A23: Twin Crossings

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Maps

Act One Flowchart Part One_full-page portrait Act One Flowchart Part Two and GM Chase Cards_for Print-PDF_full-page portrait Act One Flowchart Part Two-Web Layout_half-page portrait Act Two-Three Flowchart_full-page portrait Chase Cards GM Version_Web Layout Chase Cards Player Version_Full Page Portrait Encounter 4-E GM Map Encounter 4-E Player Map Encounter 4-E VTT Encounter 5-A One Eye's Vengeance GM Map Encounter 5-A Player Map Encounter 5-A VTT Encounter 5-C Bugbear Raiders GM Map Encounter 5-C Player Map Encounter 5-C VTT Encounter 5-D Ambush GM Map Encounter 5-D and 7-C Player Map Encounter 5-D and 7-C VTT Encounter 7-B Player Map Encounter 7-B Shipwreck GM and Player Map Encounter 7-B VTT Encounter 7-C Boar Attack GM MAP Encounter 8-F Insurance Claims GM Map Encounter 8-F Player Map Encounter 8-F VTT Encounter 8-H The Burned Mill GM and Player Map Encounter 8-H VTT MA overland map v3 Players Handout 1 Players Handout 2 Klavek Kingdom eastern region overland map Chase-Cards-Player-Version_Full-Page-Portrait-750x964

 

Audio

Horse Sounds

 

 

Twin Crossings cover v1

Adventure Background

Embroiled in a struggle between two rival merchant houses, the party races to assemble and escort a valuable load of cargo to a commerce-starved city.

Each year a trading caravel braves the strong currents and sea monsters around Vladen Point, making its way from Cherr's Landing to bring supplies and pick up the year's silk production from the isolated settlement of Svest. The normal trading routes over a mountain range, The Knee, make it difficult to carry goods in bulk into the Vladen Peninsula; the ship is a critical lifeline. Svest celebrates its arrival each spring with a festival.

Klavek Kingdom eastern region overland map

This year's celebration promises to be the best ever. The discovery of elven ruins in the unexplored wilderness of the peninsula has attracted a number of adventurers, and the town is braced for a boom time. The two competing merchant houses in town each look forward to greater prosperity—along with more opportunities to frustrate their rivals.

Sadly, disaster has already struck—in the eye of a late winter storm, the yearly caravel was attacked by a colossal sea monster. Much of the ship's crew was lost to the beast's great tentacles; the survivors could not save it as the storm broke once again on the hapless vessel.

The town receives word of the tragedy from a lone survivor, blown hundreds of miles by the storm. The race is on to get word to the far side of the mountains and assemble a relief caravan to cross back over. The loss of the ship means that any goods that do make it over the hump will yield great profit. The survival of not only of the merchant houses but the very town itself is dependent on those willing to brave the journey.

 

Adventure Summary

After an overland journey that crosses the mountain range at the neck of the Vladen Peninsula known as The Knee, the PCs arrive at Svest with the spring festival in full swing. The exuberance with which they join the celebration determines how much information they collect, and what shape they are in the following day. News that the supply ship has been sunk arrives the following morning. The PCs find a merchant patron and make hasty preparations to leave town, immediately becoming aware that a rival group has been engaged by the competition. The PCs must balance time spent in preparation with getting on the road swiftly; all while the competition seeks to disrupt their plans.

A flexible encounter sequence allows the characters a choice of paths to beat their rivals to Cherr's Landing. Side encounters offer opportunities that harm or hinder their success. These encounters include attacks by roving monsters, a chase sequence to get ahead of their rivals, as well as traps and an ambush set by the same. The exploration of a hidden tunnel uncovers helpful magic. The shipwreck of the trading vessel yields valuable salvage, and an encounter with a homesteader provides advantage to the PCs' pack train. The party may bypass or ignore these side encounters at their discretion.

In Cherr's Landing the PCs assemble their caravan, adding any enhancements they can afford. Roleplaying encounters with the caravan leaders, town officials and merchants—as well as moves by their rivals—put pressure on the party. Their competitors attempt to block their moves with assassination, economic and legal pressures, and outright attack as the PCs leave town for the return trip. As before, time is limited: tasks must be chosen carefully for maximum return.

The return trip provides an opportunity for the PCs to complete the side encounters bypassed on outward leg of the trip. Back in Svest, the PCs take their profit and their rewards.

An adventure flowchart is included to track the PCs progress, as well as player handouts to ease in tracking the caravan's cargo and end profit calculations.

 

 

Adventure Hooks

  1. The PCs have heard the rumors of elven ruins discovered in the Vladen Peninsula.

  2. A half-elven smith named Talenthal Bridaran resides in Svest. He is known to use ancient elven techniques to craft mithral arms and armor.

  3. The young settlement of Svest and the unclaimed tracts of wilderness in the Vladen Peninsula provide opportunities for adventurers who wish to carve out their own territories.

 

 

 

Getting Started

The PCs arrive in Svest while the Festival of the Ship is in full swing. Their journey into the Vladen Peninsula took them over the low pass through The Knee.

A journey of many weeks comes to close as you arrive in the town of Svest. An earthen rampart and log palisade surround the town, but the front gates are thrown wide open. Banners, flags, and kites fill the air, and the sound of unadulterated celebration reaches your ears as you pay the gate toll into town.

Reynauld (the gate guard) sizes the party up and correctly identifies them as adventurers. He comments that the town is getting lousy with fortune hunters, and warns PCs looking to buy supplies or items to do so at this time. The craftsmen and merchants of the town are winding up the work day to join in the celebration.

SVEST

CG small town

Corruption +0; Crime -4; Economy +0; Law +2; Lore -1; Society +6

Qualities insular, superstitious

Danger +0

DEMOGRAPHICS

Government council

Population 297 (280 humans; 2 gnomes; 1 half-elf; 4 halflings; 10 half-orcs)

Notable NPCs

Councilman Mishka Edeernald (LN male human expert 6)

Matron Kipya Mulberry (CG female halfling druid 4)

Forgemaster Talenthal Bridaran (CG male half-elf wizard 3/expert 5)

MARKETPLACE

Base Value 1,000 gp; Purchase Limit 5,000 gp; Spellcasting 2nd

Minor Items 3d4; Medium Items 1d6; Major Items —

 

 

Act One - The Race Begins

Act One Flowchart Part One_full-page portrait

Adventure Flowchart

 

1. A Raucous Night

The festivities are in full swing as the yearly trade caravel is due any day. The townspeople speak of the supplies they will lay in for the coming year, and look forward to the luxuries the ship will provide.

During the celebration the party learn clues useful in assembling a profitable cargo, as well as information about the town itself. PCs succeeding on a DC 11 Gather Information/Diplomacy or Knowledge (local) check may roll on the Celebration Events Table once (plus one additional roll for every 5 they exceed the skill check by). Failure by more than 5 results in a random piece of information from the Town Background Table. PCs who fail by 5 or less may earn a roll by making a successful DC 15 Skill check on a random skill (representing being drawn into conversation, game or competition). If possible, relate the rumor earned to the skill check rather than rolling randomly on the Celebration Events Table. A PC may seek to test a specific skill by increasing the DC to 20. Some examples of skill check challenges are included, but are by no means comprehensive.

Party All Night Long? PCs should indicate how recklessly they throw themselves into the celebration. PCs simply enjoying a night on the town gain no bonus to gathering rumors. PCs who celebrate until the wee hours gain a +3 circumstance bonus and must make a DC 14 Fortitude save to avoid suffering the effects of overindulgence the following day. Partying all night long requires a DC 18 Fortitude save and grants a +6 circumstance bonus to their information check. A PC who fails the Fortitude save awakens worse for the wear and gains the fatigued condition.

 

Scaling - Small Groups

For groups of 4 reduce the initial Gather Information/Diplomacy check DC to 9.

Town Background Table

d10Information
1The two premier merchants in town are Mishka Edeernald and Ghraeme Kolder, both members of the town council.
2Of the original adventures who founded the town, only the mage still resides here.
3The local mage, Hirst Grannen, is a drunk—townsfolk distrust his magic.
4Not even priests can be trusted—they leave the temples as much as any foolish fortune hunter.
5The Festival of the Ship celebrates the arrival of the yearly trading vessel. Most of the town's commerce relies on its arrival.
6Elven ruins have been discovered in the wilderness. At least one band of fortune hunters has come to town on the strength of these rumors.
7There is a second pass over the The Knee, a high pass. It is difficult to find and dangerous to negotiate, but it cuts the travel time over the mountain in half.
8The town still relies on imported foodstuffs—although each year the lands cleared around the town increase in size.
9The One-Eye Blind Inn and Tavern draws its name from the Cyclop's Raids, which took place in the region a century ago.
10Bugbear raiders based in the mountains are one of the region's primary threats.

Celebration Events Table

D20

1. A horde of children gather around a puppet show. Edging closer, you see that the performance is composed of tiny animals on a small stage. A halfling woman with a mischievous twinkle in her eye directs the tiny menagerie. GM Info - Kipya Mulberry (NG female halfling druid 4) can provide magic to aid in crossing the mountains.

2. A bonnie lass named Shayla pulls you into a festive folk dance, all the while keeping her eyes on a straw-headed boy on the edge of the crowd. At the dance's end she whispers, "that ought to make him jealous." GM Info - Encouraging the romance between Shayla and the stableboy may provide the PCs with better horses for their journey.

3. A pair of burly men carry bolts of silk out of a shop. The weaver pleads with an elegantly dressed third man who replies, "the contract says payment is due today. It is not my concern that the ship is late and you have yet to sell your wares. It is all in the fine print my lad." GM Info - The merchant, Ghraeme Kolder, is one of the PCs' possible patrons and uses any means to gain advantage in his dealings (even against his allies).

4. In the common room of the One-Eye Blind tavern, the bartender refuses to serve a man in a crooked wizard's hat. The mage unsteadily gets to his feet and cries out, "just you wait, you heartless duckfoot. When the ship comes in I'll sell my scrolls and pay my cursed tab," before staggering out into the street. GM Info - The mage discounts his scrolls drastically when the ship is declared lost.

5. Fey in the nearby woods were particularly aggressive this spring. Fortunately, the smith had a large store of cold iron and now the town guard is well equipped with weapons to counter the nasty sprites.. GM Info - Cold Iron imports lose profit.

6. Two seamstresses sit on their stoop, putting the finishing touches into a set of quilted silk armor. When asked why they are not celebrating, they inform you that every suit they complete sells for great profit in Cherr's Landing and they work until the trading vessel arrives. GM Info - The quilted silks (see new magic items) are a high profit cargo the PCs might carry over the mountain to increase their stake.

7. A pair of town guards square off in a test of arms. Partway through, one of their spear blades snaps in half. The guardsman curses, "damn Bieltog forge! That's the second spear this winter gone in the crapper". GM Info - Simple weapons imported to Svest are profit losers.

8. A round bellied man throws his arms around you and exclaims, "You must come to the wedding. Nothing but the finest food and most delicate wines for my daughter—and wait till you see her wedding present from her da—the finest furniture on the continent." GM Info - Fine furniture and fine wine are now produced locally - these items lose profit if imported.

9. A half-orc with ink-stained fingers approaches, "I heard there were adventurers in town. Come see me if you have need of maps - I'm one of the only ones here brave enough to explore the lands nearby." GM Info - The maps provide the PCs advantages in selecting their route.

10. A crowd at the Smokehouse Taproom draws your eye. The back of the waiting line sighs in disappointment. A waiting lass bemoans, "that's the last of the Jansen hams they've taken down off the hook. No more until the ship come in." GM Info - Imported Jansen hams have a high profit margin.

11. You overhear a pair of goodwives gossiping over a mug of ale, "Aye, that Hendriks—he surprised me too. Thought he was daft buying all that sheep fleece off me. But Jayla Silker says his weave is as tight as some of the silk her looms produce. I bought some fine wool broadcloth from him this morning—it will make a glorious cloak." GM Info - Hendrik's recent industry has softened the market for imported wool cloth.

12. A pair of heavily bearded trappers who stink to high heaven boast of their recent triumphs. Never have the animals been more plentiful on the trapping and hunting routes. They have laid in quite a supply of smoked meat and furs. GM Info - Profit on smoked meats is down.

13. "The forgemaster is full of himself now that those adventurers showed up with a few mithral bars. All he works on is that blasted suit of elven armor." GM Info - Mithral earns high profit.

14. "Speaking of apprentices, the old apprentice of Garmin Yeng, the furniture maker, is on about practicing a higher art. Since marrying the poor sod's widow last fall you can't get a simple bench made in this town. GM Info - Simple imported furniture finds a ready market in the town.

15. A quartet of strong farmers process through the streets, a huge wheel of cheese on their shoulders. A gnome balances on top, juggling a trio of heavy knives. The cavalcade stops and stands the cheese up against an upended table after the gnome springs down. "Its the last of the gnomish cheese lads, try your luck to slice off a wedge of the greatness." GM Info - Gnomish cheese is a prized commodity.

16. A grumpy acolyte complains when a wrestling match gone bad results in a broken arm of one of the competitors. She mutters that since the priest of the town perished trying to relive his adventuring days, she can barely keep up with the healing duties of the town. GM Info - Healing kits are in high demand.

17. A brewer discusses his plans for the coming year, excited about the new vats he has on order with the smith, who is simply awaiting a shipment of copper to complete. GM Info - Copper profit is up.

18. The local cooper is not enjoying the festival at all, but putting the finishing touches on a load of barrels for export. He tells you a murrain slew all of the cattle and oxen in the town last fall and the settlement is heartily sick of salt beef, although it has meant even more empty casks for him to sell to the Swiftsure. GM Info - Salt beef profits are down, cooper's supplies are down.

19. "Those new adventures in town tell the strangest tales. I heard em say they had a hard time changing their coin in Cherr's Landing. They had some bank drafts from a Mohkba trader, and had to sell em’ short. Heh, they musta not known whose palm to grease. GM Info - Cash or Trade Scrip is king Cherr's Landing—bank drafts suffer a high surcharge.

20. "That Mishka Edeernald...he is alright. I heard he ordered new armor for the town militia and paid for it himself. Not like that skinflint Ghraeme Kolder. I'll shop at Mishka's shop any day—he drives a fair deal." GM Info - Mishka Edeernald is a possible patron for the PCs. Imported light armor loses money.

Skill Check examples to earn a Celebration Events Table roll

 

Tumble/Acrobatics - participate in an obstacle course race

Knowledge (any) - settle an argument

Perform - entertain some townsfolk

Sense Motive - that guy in the corner looks lonely—he just needs someone to talk to

Listen/Perception - let me just see if I can hear this conversation a bit better…

Appraise/Craft -  strike up a conversation with a shop owner

Bluff/Disguise -  hobknob with the better off citizens

Survival - recognize and commiserate with other wilderness explorers

 

2. Patronage

The mood in the common room of the One-Eye Blind Inn is subdued. Perhaps it is the pounding in your head, but the porridge is tasteless. Indeed, on closer inspection, it is simply boiled oats, without a even sprinkle of salt to season it. Quite unlike the fare from the evening before. When asked for bread, the innkeeper replies, "no flour for bread mates!"

News of the trading vessel's loss arrived in town while the PCs slept—a sailor from The Swiftsure drifted into town on a waterlogged hatch early in the morning. The settlement is already on short commons in anticipation of a hard year.

PCs who failed their Fortitude saves during the celebration begin the day fatigued.

As the PCs collect their wits, they are approached by each of the town's principal merchants. Both lost significant cargoes on the ship, and must reclaim not only their own fortunes, but those of the townspeople as well. They both seek to hire a band willing to assemble a relief caravan via the overland route, but the character of each man is decidedly different.

Mishka Edeernald approaches the party directly, seeking them out in the inn. He is a thoughtful, soft spoken man who truly cares about the future of the town (Sense Motive DC 15). He can provide the PCs with a 10,000 gp letter of credit for the task, and promises 500 gp each on completion of the mission—plus 50 % of any profit.

Ghraeme Kolder sends his bodyguards to fetch the adventurers (although if they refuse to come, he grouchily seeks them out)—PCs recognize him if they saw him shaking down the silk weaver the previous night. Kolder is falsely ingratiating and concerned solely with his own profit (Sense Motive DC 15). He holds a letter of credit for 12,000 gp, and promises the party 400 gp each on their return plus 60% of any profit.

Kolder's contract includes tricky legalese: PCs who fail a DC 18 Decipher Script/Linguistics check miss an important clause that causes them to forfeit their profit share at the conclusion of the adventure. If they succeed on the check Kolder sputters about it being standard language (+11 Opposed Bluff check) but changes the contract to a guaranteed 40% profit share.

Skill Check - Klavekian Trade Scrip

Knowledge (Local) DC 10. Trade scrip is often used by merchants to fund agents representing their interests. It is easily traceable and used primarily for bulk commerce, thus providing a safeguard against would-be thieves tempted to run off with a cash stake. On the black market, trade scrip is worth 10-15% of its face value—if one can even find a buyer. Most dealers in bulk goods accept trade scrip, avoiding fees and surcharges from other forms of payment like foreign coin or letters of credit.

Both merchants seek to steal a march on the competition and suggest the PCs balance their preparation time with a swift start to their journey—the first caravan to reach the beleaguered town will surely yield the best profits. They answer questions as best they can and offer some guidance on the possible preparations the party might make in Encounter 3.

A DC 15 Spot/Perception check informs the PCs that the merchants are each courting another band of adventurers—it is clear they will have rivals in their task.

Sidebar - The Rivals

The adventuring band hired by the competition ultimately stops at nothing to win the race (including violence). If the PCs elect to work with the noble Mishka Edeernald, the rivals have been instructed by Kolder to succeed at all costs, including murder. If the party is working with Kolder, the rivals' violent actions are unsanctioned by the soft-spoken Edeernald, and if presented with evidence of their wrongdoing at the conclusion of the adventure, he makes reparations by selling one magical item of up to 500 gp in value to each of the PCs at half price.

 

3. Preparation

The party’s success (profit) is determined by two factors: how quickly they return with a cargo and the total trade value of the cargo. Throughout the course of the adventure, the PCs may earn or lose speed and trade points.

By the time the adventurers have found a patron it is mid-afternoon. The party may leave immediately, or may take up to three blocks of time to make preparations (afternoon, evening and night). Each PC may attempt one task (or aid another) per block. Reminder: Both merchants speak knowledgeably about these preparations in Encounter 2 above. The players should be clear what preparations they may make.

The rival adventurers seek to confound the PCs in certain tasks.

Players Handout 1

Players Handout #1

Obtain Original Cargo Manifests: This document (see Player Handout 1) gives the party an overview of possible cargoes. Obtaining the manifest earns the PCs 1 trade point.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night

Rivals: A DC 19 Spot/Perception check keeps the rivals under observation so they are unable to steal the documents before the PCs can get them. If the documents are stolen, an extra time block is required to compile a new list from notes and journals.

 

Validate Insurance Papers: A successful insurance claim in Cherr's Landing provides additional funds. A DC 20 Diplomacy check (-1 for every 100 gp in bribes) is required for the notary to expedite the process—if not, the claim takes two time slots to validate.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night (completion of papers only)

Rivals: If this task is not accomplished in the afternoon, the rivals bribe the notary to delay other claims, increasing the starting DC to 23.

 

Change Money: The merchant's letters of credit can be exchanged for Klavekian Trade Scrip here in Svest.

Availability: Afternoon

Rivals: Their rivals hand out bags of coppers to a dozen teens to exchange into silver. Unless the PC convince the teens (DC 15 Diplomacy check) to let them trade out the copper (adventurers pay 50 gp and get back 2,000 cp), the teens gum up the line, and the money changer closes shop before the PCs can make the exchange.

 

PCs may attempt to break into the vault during the night (but not evening) with a DC 16 Hide/Stealth check followed by a DC 25 Open Locks/Disable Device check to enter the bank. The vault's lock is tougher (DC 30), and trapped. The vault contains 12,000 gp in Klavekian Trade Scrip and 1,500 GP in assorted coin. Removing more funds than the PCs have a note for is an evil act, and may have repercussions if the PCs are identified as the thieves.

RAY OF EXHAUSTION TRAP     CR4

XP 1,200

Type: magic; Perception DC 28; Disable Device DC 28

Trigger mechanical; Reset none

Effect spell effect (ray of exhaustion; +6 ranged touch results in target gaining the exhausted condition; a DC 18 Fortitude save reduces the exhaustion to fatigue)

 

Hire Horses: The party must make a DC 16 Handle Animal or Survival check to obtain the best horses on offer. PCs pay market rates to purchase the horses, although the hostler says he will buy them back when they return (minus 10%). The party might wish to purchase additional horses in case of loss or to carry extra gear or food—there are enough horses to purchase one remount or pack animal for each PC, and the purchaser may select a combat trained animal if he desires. Obtaining the best mounts earns the party one speed point.

Warriors-on-horsebackAvailability: Afternoon, Evening

Rivals: As the PCs make their way to the stables, one of their rivals rolls a barrel into the street and shouts "Last of the Firehouse Ale mates! It’s on me!" A DC 15 Escape Artist or Intimidate check permits a PC to move through the crowd swiftly—if not, they lose the race to the stables, allowing their rivals to obtain the best mounts. Adventurers that track down Shayla with a DC 12 Gather Information/Diplomacy or Knowledge (local) check can distract the stableboy during the evening or night and make off with the best mounts, turning the tables on their rivals.

 

Collect Information on Profitable Items: Roll again on the Celebration Events Table as per Encounter 2 (although no second chance skill check applies). The GM may need to reword the boxed text to reflect the ongoing anxiety in town.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night (-4 to skill check)

Rivals: No Opposition

 

Carry Sample Cargo or Quilted Silks on Outbound Leg: A sample of goods produced locally weighs 50 pounds and helps convince the Caravan Masters to make the trip to Svest. Their patron also has 5 quilted silks (15 lbs. each) in stock. If the PCs can sell them in Cherr's Landing they can add the money to their caravan stake.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night; it takes a separate action to prepare either the samples or the quilted silks.

Rivals: The rivals sabotage the pack containing the quilted silks or the sample case, requiring a DC 16 Handle Animal or Knowledge (engineering) check to keep the animals from panicking when it slips off or fix the problem before it comes to light—if not, the PCs lose one speed point.

 

Visit the Mapmaker: The party may buy maps of the area from the half-orc mapmaker. A DC 15 Knowledge (geography) or Survival check indicates the PCs purchase a complete set of maps—if not, their 50 gp spent yields them an incomplete set.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening

Rivals: If the PCs wait until evening to purchase the maps, their rivals have stashed the hogtied mapmaker in a closet and Brint impersonates an apprentice (Spot/Perception DC 36 vs Brint's disguise or Sense Motive DC 24 to realize he is hiding something—a DC 12 Will save is allowed following a successful Sense Motive check to penetrate the disguise; if successful the Spot/Perception check is reduced to 26) and sells the PCs a set of false maps for 50 gp. If unmasked, Brint jumps off the balcony of the mapmaker's third floor apartment. He wears a snapleaf, which cushions his fall and turns him invisible to make his escape.

 

Visit the Mage: The drunken mage is desperate to sell his supply of scrolls at 50% of their market price. PCs may resell them in Cherr's Landing for 70% (or more) of their market price, or simply keep the well-priced scrolls for themselves. The wizard has two 3rd-level scrolls, four 2nd-level scrolls, and six 1st-level scrolls (all CL 5th, market price 125 gp) available. There is a 75% chance per scroll a PC may specify the arcane scroll desired, otherwise roll randomly to determine the spell.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening

Rivals: No Opposition—but if the PCs arrive in the afternoon, it takes a lesser restoration or through the evening time slot to sober the wizard up enough to do business. He is totally insensible at night.

 

Delay or Sabotage the Competition: The GM may allow a creative player latitude to come up with a plan to delay their rivals—turnabout is fair play, after all. Using the above examples guidelines, allow a PC to make an appropriate skill check (DC 16-19) based on her role playing to gain one speed point. Note: Directly attacking their rivals will bring the law down on the party (Knowledge, local DC 5) and may result in total failure of the mission—even at night there are too many possible witnesses. If the players are bent on this course of action, a Knowledge (geography) check DC 5 informs them that if they get out of town, there may be a better place to ambush their rivals on the road (the first opportunity is after they cross the ferry).

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night

Rivals: PCs must make a DC 19 Hide/Stealth check to find an unobserved moment in the afternoon and evening to make an attempt; at night they must merely succeed on the appropriate skill check.

 

Rest: PCs may spend a time block resting to recover from fatigue. Each block spent counts as 4 hours of complete rest.

Availability: Afternoon, Evening, Night

Rivals: No Opposition

 

Developments Once the PCs have timed their exit the race begins. Speed points and fatigue are applied as per the table below. The party may also earn or lose a speed point based on their average speed. Exhausted PCs move at half speed (or half their mounted speed as they struggle to keep in the saddle).

PC Exit Timing and Preparation ActivitiesSpeed Point Rewards and Encounter Effects
Exit town immediately after securing a patron+4 Speed Points | Advance to Encounter 4-C
Exit town after the afternoon time block+3 Speed Points | Advance to Encounter 4-B
Exit town after the evening time block+2 Speed Points | Fortitude save DC 18 or FatiguedAdvance to Encounter 4-A
Performs activity other than rest during night time blockFortitude save DC 18 or Fatigued
Leaves town after the night time block+1 Speed Point | Fortitude save DC 18 or Fatigued; Requires a DC 20 Diplomacy check or the guard refuses to open the gates. PCs must return to town and may gain up to 4 hours of rest before morning. A DC 15 Hide/Steath check allows a PC to exit over the walls (Climb DC 10), but unless magic is used there is no way to get horses over the palisade.Advance to Encounter 4-A
Morning exit From townPCs may sleep in or continue preparations at a cost of 1 speed point per 4 hour block, although their patron begins to complain after the first block of time passes. Advance to Encounter 4-A
Average Speed of Party when leaving town
35 feet or greater+1 Speed Point
30+0 Speed Points
Less than 30 feet-1 Speed Point

Sidebar - Remounts and Fodder

Horses, ponies and other riding animals require 10 pounds of grain (or other food) per day. Scattered thorps and hamlets supply fodder for a small party of mounted travelers, but 70 pounds of grain per animal must be carried to cut down on grazing time and maintain speed. This may require the PCs to lead a pack animal bearing additional fodder, or invest in masterwork pack saddles.

A PC may lead a single remount or pack animal in addition to their personal mount, taking a -2 circumstance penalty to Ride, Handle Animal and Survival skill checks while doing so.

Animals bearing a medium or heavy load suffer a reduction in speed from encumbrance.

 

4. Race to The Knee

The first part of the journey sees the PCs race to the mountain passes at the neck of the Vladen Peninsula. Use the flowchart to track progress. The party should be aware that diverting from their path may cost them time. Some encounters include time for the adventurers to rest and recover from fatigue.

 

4-A The Wine Merchant

Preceded by: Exiting Svest in the evening, night or morning

Adjust the read aloud text for the time of day.

Smoke from [the flames of] a small fire is visible a few hundred yards from the trail. Its source is partially obscured by small grove of trees. A high pitched keening carries on the wind to your location.

The high-pitched keening is recognizable as a very off-key rendition of a local tavern song with a DC 22 Listen/Perception check, otherwise it echoes eerily. Bill Vintner celebrates in the small grove and welcomes the PCs to dinner, a drink and song, or breakfast as the case may be. He is slightly tipsy, and if questioned about his good mood he tells the PCs that this day he sold his wine. No longer will he be known as Blackstrap (a nickname for cheap red wine). After the festival, he left town dejected, but a few hours later a messenger arrived with an order for the year's production for a local wedding. Soon all in town will know that he has at last crafted a fine vintage.

PCs catch 4 hours of rest after speaking with Bill Vinter, or if approaching in the morning, 4 hours prior to reaching the jolly craftsman.

 

Development: Advance to 4-B.

4-B. The Ferry Chase

Preceded by: Exiting Svest in the afternoon or 4-A.

Following the Vladen River upstream, you estimate you are within a short distance of the ferry that will provide transport to the far side. As you round a bend, a trio of horsemen just upstream note your appearance. They spur their mounts and race ahead toward the ferry landing.

A DC 14 Wisdom check informs the PCs that four rivals hounded their moves in Svest; one is unaccounted for. Once the winner of the chase reaches the finish line it ends and all remaining racers advance one card at a time until a complete team is ready to depart. If the PCs visited with Bill Vinter (4-A), their competitors start the chase on Card 2.

horse-pictures-24

The team containing the initial winner of the chase may convince the ferryman to wait for any laggards. Opposed Diplomacy or Intimidate checks are required each round as party members continue to advance one card. A complete party gains a +2 bonus each round the ferry is delayed by slowpokes. The ferryman refuses bribes, saying it is no great loss to wait one's turn. Intimidation impacts the boatman's actions in The Ferryman's Revenge.

The GM's version of the chase cards includes the competition's skill check (including speed bonus) and dismounted options for PCs on foot if applicable. If skill modifiers for both checks are included, the NPC attempts to advance three cards. Mounts and led animals advance on the strengths of their rider's effort, using the PCs skill bonuses. The base distance per card and baseline speed of this chase is 40 feet.

Chase Rules

At the start of a chase, each participant makes an Initiative check to determine the order in which he moves.

While a character's actual speed doesn't directly affect how often he moves between cards, it does affect how quickly he navigates obstacles. For each 10 feet slower than the chase's baseline speed a character moves, he suffers a cumulative –2 penalty on any check made to navigate obstacles. Likewise, for every 10 feet faster than the baseline speed he moves, he gains a cumulative +2 bonus on these checks.

Significant mobility advantages over the baseline speed type (such as flight) grant an additional +10 bonus on checks made to avoid obstacles, simulating the character's use of enhanced movement to bypass obstacles entirely. Used properly, extremely powerful effects (such as teleportation) allow a character to instantly move forward a number of cards (use each card's distance to determine ranges).

It takes a move action to advance through a single card. When a character exits from a card, he must choose one of that card's two obstacles to face as a standard action before continuing to the next card. Success means the character advances to the next card, while failure means the character must face the obstacle again on the next round. Instead of exiting a card, a character can choose to take another action not directly related to navigating the chase's course, such as casting a spell or drawing a weapon.

A character who wants to attempt to advance three cards during his turn can do so by taking a full-round action. That character must overcome both obstacles on the card he is leaving. In this case, if a character fails either obstacle check by 5 or less, he only moves one card forward and his turn ends. If a character fails either obstacle check by more than 5, he cannot move at all that turn. A character unfortunate enough to fail two obstacle checks in a turn becomes mired in his current chase card. A character who is mired must spend another full-round action becoming unmired and effectively loses his next turn in the chase.

A character can also choose to make a ranged attack or cast a spell during his turn in a chase. If the action is a full-round action, he can't move at all. Use the number of cards and their established distances to determine ranges as necessary. The terrain where the chase takes place might provide the target partial or even full cover or concealment, as the GM sees fit. A character can only choose to make melee attacks against targets that are on the same card as they are.

Development: Winning the Ferry Chase advances the PCs to 4-C. Losing the chase advances the PCs to 4-D, as once across the river, their rivals sever the rope that drives the ferry, and the raft begins to drift downstream.

Note: If the PCs initiate combat with their rivals, statistics for the competition are provided in Encounter 5-D. Any violence witnessed by the ferryman adjusts his attitude during The Ferryman's Revenge as if he had been intimidated by the PCs.

GM CHASE CARDS
 Chase Cards GM Version_Web Layout

 

PLAYER CHASE CARDS
Chase-Cards-Player-Version_Full-Page-Portrait-750x964

4-C. A Head Start

Preceded by: Immediate exit from Svest or 4-B

Crossing the river is a simple matter. After negotiating with the ferryman, you and you beasts are loaded on a flat-bottomed raft. He and his son pull the raft across the river by hauling on a thick hemp rope that stretches from bank to bank. Once across the water, you realize that cutting the ferry rope will delay any who wish to use it until the rope is re-rigged, although it might be hard on the ferryman.

Development: Award the PCs one speed point for beating their rivals across the river.

Cutting the rope earns an additional speed point, but the ferryman will have his revenge on the return trip.

 

PCs may rest after this encounter.

Development: A few miles up river, the PCs find a likely spot to set an ambush for their rivals. If they do so, the statistics for Brint, Jillak and Freya are found in Encounter 5-D. PCs who successfully stop their opponents should advance to Scene 5 - Over the Knee. If one or more rivals escapes the trap, advance the PCs to 4-F. The PCs lose one speed point waiting in ambush.

 

If no ambush is set, advance the PCs to 4-E.

 

4-D. The Ford Crossing

Preceded by: 4-B.

After their rivals sabotage the ferry, the ferryman yells across the river that there is a ford half a day's ride upstream.

Finding the ford requires a DC 16 Survival or Knowledge (geography) check. PCs with a set of complete maps from the half-orc mapmaker gain a +4 circumstance bonus to the check while an incomplete set gives a +1 bonus. PCs with a false set suffer a -4 circumstance penalty to the check.

Failure on the skill check puts the party at risk as they attempt to navigate the river at a false crossing. A DC 15 Handle Animal or Ride check is required to prevent a mount or pack animal from being swept into the current (DC 15 Balance/Acrobatics check for dismounted PCs). Any creature in the water must succeed on DC 15 Swim check to make progress against the current—failure by 5 or more means being dragged under. Remember to apply the -3 and -6 check penalties for medium and heavy loads. Ponies have a Swim skill of +1, riding dogs, +2, light horses +3 and heavy horses +4. An animal that fails three consecutive swim checks is drowned —PCs (and animal companions) should play their struggle out round by round.

Crossing Safely

Two successful DC 15 Swim checks cross the river, although after the first accident, the PCs realize that this crossing is not safe, and at the cost of one speed point may elect to search again for the correct ford.

Development: Advance the PCs to 4-E.

Encounter 4-E GM Map

Encounter 4-E Player Map Encounter 4-E VTT

4-E. Helping a Halfling (CR 6)

Preceded by: 4-C, 4-D, 5-B or 15.

Blood stains the trail ahead. A large number of tracks mingle with patches of drying gore.

Retreating from an ambush by a pair of bugbear teens out to make a name for themselves, the druid Kipya stumbled upon a bear trap and is now caught; the monsters are closing in.

PCs identify the footprints as a single halfling and three goblinoid creatures mixed in amongst various woodland animal tracks with a DC 15 Survival check; faiure by 5 or less does not allow the PCs to identify the creatures, but does reveal that two creatures stalked a small humanoid as it fled into the woods. A DC 15 Spot/Perception check discovers the corpse of a slain red fox in the scrub near the edge of the initial ambush site. The fox has green ribbons woven into its fur—any PC who watched Kipya's menagerie perform at the festival recognizes the fox as one of the diminutive performers, although the corpse is now normal sized.

The party must dismount to follow the trail under low hanging branches. They come upon the trapped druid surrounded by the three youths after 30 minutes travel. A DC 17 Listen/Perception check means the PCs hear taunts in both goblin and common (the bugbears are telling the halfling what they will do to her family while they make her watch) prior to reaching the confrontation. Forewarned adventurers may approach with Stealth.

There is a 30% chance a PC (roll for each character) will stumble upon one of the bear traps during their approach, although adventurers looking for traps or an ambush (or who have the trapspotter rogue talent) may make a Search/Perception check to avoid the trap. Springing a trap alerts the bugbears.

Bear Trap CR 1 (3)

Type mechanical; Search /Perception DC 15; Disable Device DC 20

Trigger location; Reset manual

Effect Atk +10 melee (2d6+3); sharp jaws spring shut around the creature's ankle and halve the creature's base speed; the creature can escape with a DC 20 Disable Device check, DC 22 Escape Artist check, or DC 26 Strength check.

During the fight, the bugbears attempt to draw the PCs over any remaining bear traps using the Bluff skill (they have a -1 to their check); adventurers that fail to see through the ruse with their Sense Motive checks do not realize the danger. If a PC succeeds on the Sense Motive check, allow them to make a free Search/Perception check to avoid a trap (although the DC to locate the trap is increased to 20 due to the distractions of combat).

Scaling the Encounter For APL5 parties, add one bugbear and one additional bear trap to the encounter.

bugbear2__bruno_balixa

(2) Bugbears (3.5)

Bugbear

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (Goblinoid)

Hit Dice: 3d8+3 (16 hp)

Initiative: +1

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)

Armor Class: 17 (+2 Dex, +3 natural, +2 leather armor, +1 light wooden shield), touch 12, flat-footed 15

Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+4

Attack: Morning Star +5 melee (1d8+2) or javelin +3 ranged (1d6+2)

Full Attack Morning Star +5 melee (1d8+2) or javelin +3 ranged (1d6+1)

Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., scent

Saves: Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +1

Abilities: Str 15, Dex 12, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 9

Skills: Climb +3, Hide +4, Listen +4, Move Silently +6, Spot +4,

Feats: Alertness, Weapon Focus (morningstar)

Environment: Temperate Mountains

Organization: Solitary, gang (2-4), or band (11-20 plus 150% noncombatants plus 2 2nd-level sergeants and 1 leader of 2nd-5th level)

Challenge Rating: 2

Treasure: Standard

Alignment: Usually chaotic evil

Advancement: By character class

Level Adjustment: +1

(2) Bugbears (Pathfinder)

Bugbear       CR 2

XP 400 each

CE Medium humanoid (goblinoid)

Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +8

Defense

AC 17, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+2 armor, +1 Dex, +3 natural, +1 shield)

hp 16 (3d8+3)

Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +1

Offense

Speed 30 ft.

Melee morningstar +5 (1d8+3)

Ranged javelin +3 (1d6+3)

Statistics

Str 16, Dex 13, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 9

Base Atk +2; CMB +5; CMD 16

Feats Intimidating Prowess, Skill Focus (Perception)

Skills Intimidate +7, Perception +8, Stealth +10; Racial Modifiers +4 Intimidate, +4 Stealth

SQ stalker

Languages Common, Goblin

Special Abilities

Stalker (Ex) Perception and Stealth are always class skills for bugbears

Development: If the PCs ignore this encounter, they gain one speed point (and Kipya makes a series of brutal concentration checks to entangle the bugbears and summon aid—eventually driving them off). Advance them to Scene 5. A second chance at this encounter follows Encounters 5-B and 15. Ignoring these second chances earns a speed point as above, but means the PC lose out on the treasure.

Once rescued, Kipya hurries with the PCs to her grove where she finds her children safe. Kipya knows the location of the high pass, and warns that although it cuts the travel time over the mountain in half, the terrain is hazardous and difficult for mounted parties to negotiate without taking precautions to assist or handle four-legged creature in difficult spots. She rewards the PCs with magic from her stores worth 1,500 gp—she is an accomplished potion maker and also scribes magical scrolls to create her miniature animal circus. Her scrolls of reduce animal are unique, allowing two or more castings can be stacked on a single creature (details are provided in Encounter 5-B). She has the following items:

 

wand of endure elements (35 Charges) 525 gp

potion of barkskin (2)                             300 gp each

potion of bull’s strength (2)                     300 gp each

potion of cat’s grace                                        300 gp

potion of spiderclimb                              300 gp

potion of jump (2)                                  50 gp each

scroll of lesser restoration (2)                 150 gp each

scroll of speak with animals (2)              25 gp each

scroll of reduce animal (2)                      150 gp each

 

Kipya sells any of these items to the PCs at standard prices.

Development: If proceeding from 4-C or 4-D the PCs may rest in the Druid's grove, then advance to 4-F.

 

4-F. A Fork in the Road (CR 5)

Preceded by: Ford Crossing, Sabotage the Ferry

The road ahead forks. The more traveled path to the north takes you to the low pass over the mountains, with which you are familiar. A disused trail leads to the west, where rumors say a quicker way over The Knee may be found by those willing to brave the high pass. On a hill next to the fork, stacks of cut timber from a nearby logging camp are covered in a thin layer of late winter snow.

The rival band has set a trap in an effort to slow down the PCs as they reach the fork. Their intent is to kill, cripple, or lame the adventures or their mounts.

A DC 20 Search/Perception check notes a set of small booted tracks leading to the stack of logs, and that some of the snow is disturbed on top.

ROLLING LOG TRAP       CR 5

XP 1,600

Type: mechanical; Perception DC 20; Disable Device DC 20

Trigger location; Reset manual

Effect Atk +15 melee (6d6); multiple targets (all targets in a 40-ft. line), Mounted PCs avoid damage. Any creature knocked unconscious is lamed and moves at half speed, requiring a DC 20 Heal check or 10 points of magical healing to clear the condition.

Development: After a night’s rest, advance to Scene 5.

 

5. Over The Knee

Act One Flowchart Part Two-Web Layout_half-page portraitPCs attempting the high pass gain one speed point if they got directions from Kipya Mulberry. Otherwise they may earn a point by making a DC 16 Survival or Knowledge (geography) check. PCs with a set of complete maps from the half-orc mapmaker gain a +4 circumstance bonus to the check, an incomplete set gives a +1 bonus. PCs with a false set suffer a -4 circumstance penalty to the check.

PCs following the low road advance to Encounter 5-C.

Encounters in this scene should be run in the course of a single day, even if the adventurers end up doubling back. If the party rests, warn them that there is still plenty of ground to cover; if they insist, deduct one speed point and move on the following day.

PCs also have a chance to earn a speed point for this scene based on their current average speed.

 

Average Party Speed

35 feet or greater+1 Speed Point
30 feet+0 Speed Points
Less than 30 feet-1 Speed Point

 

Encounter 5-A One Eye's Vengeance GM Map

Encounter 5-A Player Map Encounter 5-A VTT

5-A. One-Eye's Vengeance (CR 6)

Preceded by: PC traveling the high pass.

The trail hugs the mountains into the heights. Its left hand side of the path keeps you close to the uphill slope. A mere 5 feet away to your right, the mountain falls off just as steeply. An occasional pile of loose rubble and dirt indicates erosion from the slopes above, although the roots of pines strengthen the bank—no major slides appear to have occurred on this stretch of trail in some time.

An alcove in the mountainside provides a lone cyclops a spot to ambush those intruding on his domain. The last of a line of giants descended from the Cyclops Raids a century past, it is bitter in his solitude and seeks vengeance on all who come within reach.

A large dead tree masks the alcove and tilts to expose the entrance. A DC 20 Search/Perception check calls attention to the tree, allowing action in the surprise round (the cyclops uses his action to tilt the tree).

If possible, the cyclops waits until half of the party has passed by his hiding place before striking, using Power Attack and Great Cleave to savage as many creatures—including horses—as he can. He uses his Flash of Insight special ability to "roll" a 20 on his initiative, netting a 19 after applying his negative modifier. When staggered and under the effect of his Ferocity quality he attempts to bull rush creatures off the trail onto the downhill slope.

Hazard: Animals untrained for combat must be handled to stay calm. Failure results in the beast panicking and moving away from the cyclops. A panicked creature attempting to squeeze past another on the trail (or a creature flung off the trail) must make a DC 16 Reflex save or tumble down the slope ten feet per round, taking 1d6 damage per round until it rights itself by making the Reflex save (taken once a round) or is knocked unconscious.

Any unconscious or slain creature on the mountain trail converts its squares to difficult terrain.

Encounter difficulty

The tight quarters of this fight makes strung out parties particularly susceptible to Great Cleave; the CR has been adjusted to reflect this. Consider only using Power Attack against parties of 6 or more and spreading the damage out (the giant gets tired and unfocused in his old age when he exerts himself too much).

cyclops__bruno_balixa-trans

Cyclops (3.5)

Cyclops

Size/Type: Large Giant

Hit Dice: 10d8+20 (65 hp)

Initiative: -1

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)

Armor Class: 19 (+4 armor, –1 Dex, +7 natural, –1 size), touch 8, flat-footed 19

Base Attack/Grapple: +7/+16

Attack: Greataxe +11 melee (3d6+7/×3) or Heavy Crossbow +5 ranged (2d8/19–20)

Full Attack: Greataxe +11/+6 melee (3d6+7/×3) or Heavy Crossbow +5 ranged (2d8/19–20)

Space/Reach: 10 ft./10 ft.

Special Qualities: Ferocity, Low-light Vision

Saves: Fort +9, Ref +2, Will +4

Abilities: Str 21, Dex 8, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 13, Cha 8

Skills: Intimidate +7, Listen +8, Profession (soothsayer) +9, Sense Motive +5, Spot +8, Survival +5; Racial Modifiers +4 to Listen and Spot

Feats: Alertness, Cleave, Great Cleave, Improved Bull Rush, Power Attack

Environment: any temperate or tropical

Organization: solitary or conclave (2–6) or tribe (7–18)

Challenge Rating: 5

Treasure: Standard

Alignment: Usually chaotic evil

Advancement: By character class

Level Adjustment: +3

Special Abilities

Ferocity (Ex)

A cyclops is such a tenacious combatant that it continues to fight without penalty even while disabled or dying.

Flash of Insight (Su) Once per day as an immediate action, a cyclops can peer into an occluded visual spectrum of possible futures, gaining insight that allows it to select the exact result of one die roll before the roll is made. This effect can alter an action taken by the cyclops only, and cannot be applied to the rolls of others.

Cyclops (Pathfinder)

Cyclops CR 5

XP 1,600 each

NE Large humanoid (giant)

Init –1; Senses low-light vision; Perception +11

DEFENSE

AC 19, touch 8, flat-footed 19 (+4 armor, –1 Dex, +7 natural, –1 size)

hp 65 (10d8+20)

Fort +9, Ref +2, Will +4

Defensive Abilities ferocity

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee greataxe +11/+6 (3d6+7, Crit ×3)

Ranged heavy crossbow +5 (2d8/, Crit 19–20/x2)

STATISTICS

Str 21, Dex 8, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 13, Cha 8

Base Atk +7; CMB +13; CMD 22

Feats Alertness, Cleave, Great Cleave, Improved Bull Rush, Power Attack

Skills Intimidate +9, Perception +11, Profession (soothsayer) +10 Sense Motive +5, Survival +6; Racial Modifiers +8 Perception

SQ flash of insight

Languages Common, Cyclops, Giant

ECOLOGY

Environment any temperate or tropical

Organization solitary or conclave (2–6) or tribe (7–18)

Treasure standard (hide armor, Large greataxe, Large heavy crossbow, other treasure)

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Flash of Insight (Su) Once per day as an immediate action, a cyclops can peer into an occluded visual spectrum of possible futures, gaining insight that allows it to select the exact result of one die roll before the roll is made. This effect can alter an action taken by the cyclops only, and cannot be applied to the rolls of others.

Treasure: The cyclops wears a solid gold torque worth 2,000 gp. A DC 20 Knowledge (history) check identifies the torc as one warn by cyclops raiders from a century ago. The cyclops were defeated in part by a skilled mage-engineer, whose battalion of special troops was known to bridge terrain obstacles almost in the blink of an eye.

Development: Advance the PCs to 5-B, or if the cyclops is encountered on the return journey, to Encounter 16: The Ferryman's Revenge.

 

5-B. The Rope Bridge

Preceded by: 5-A

A 50-foot chasm was once bridged by a solid stone overpass, but the ancient structure has crumbled away. A flimsy looking bridge consisting of a single foot rope connected to two hand ropes with crisscrossing support cables spans the gap.

Crossing the bridge requires a DC 9 Climb check. Winds whipping through the chasm prevent a PC from taking 10. Overburdened PCs may suffer a weight check penalty. Falling into the chasm results in a 60-foot drop to the bottom. Scaling the walls of either side is a DC 15 Climb check.

Four-legged animals may not negotiate the rope bridge or the cliffs. PCs have the option to abandon their animals, turn back to the lower pass, or use magic to get across the bridge. Spells such as spider climb or levitate allow a creature to negotiate the chasm, ignoring the bridge. Animals (and their equipment or cargo) may be affected by the reduce animals spell, allowing them to be carried across the bridge. If using the special scrolls from Kipya's cache, two reduce animal spells may be stacked on the same creature with a DC 17 Spellcraft check. PCs may carry up to two reduced animals at a time by creating a harness with a DC 12 Use Rope/Disable Device or Profession (sailor) check.

Development: Crossing the bridge advances the party to 5-D. Turning back costs the PCs two speed points. If they have already rescued Kipya Mulberry (4-E) advance them to 5-C. If they have not encountered Kipya, run encounter 4-E. If they end up rescuing Kipya and return to the chasm armed with magic to bypass the rope bridge, they earn back one of the lost speed points; otherwise advance to 5-C.

 

Encounter 5-C Bugbear Raiders GM Map

 

Encounter 5-C Player Map Encounter 5-C VTT

 

5-C. Bugbear Raiders (CR 5)

Preceded by: PCs choosing the low pass over The Knee or if turned back from 5-B.

Three bugbear raiders seek their overzealous sons. A DC 26 Spot/Perception check winkles them out from behind their cover as they launch their Javelins, allowing action in the surprise round. The bugbears start the combat with a +2 bonus to Hide/Stealth from cover, and +4 for distance, as they lie in wait 40 feet off the main road.

bugbear1__bruno_balixa

(3) Bugbears (3.5)

Bugbear

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (Goblinoid)

Hit Dice: 3d8+3 (16 hp)

Initiative: +1

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)

Armor Class: 17 (+2 Dex, +3 natural, +2 leather armor, +1 light wooden shield), touch 12, flat-footed 15

Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+4

Attack: Morning Star +5 melee (1d8+2) or Javelin +3 ranged (1d6+2)

Full Attack Morning Star +5 melee (1d8+2) or Javelin +3 ranged (1d6+1)

Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., Scent

Saves: Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +1

Abilities: Str 15, Dex 12, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 9

Skills: Climb +3, Hide +4, Listen +4, Move Silently +6, Spot +4,

Feats: Alertness, Weapon Focus (morningstar)

Environment: Temperate Mountains

Organization: Solitary, gang (2-4), or band (11-20 plus 150% noncombatants plus 2 2nd-level sergeants and 1 leader of 2nd-5th level)

Challenge Rating: 2

Treasure: Standard

Alignment: Usually chaotic evil

Advancement: By character class

Level Adjustment: +1

(3) Bugbears (Pathfinder)

Bugbear CR 2

XP 400 each

CE Medium humanoid (goblinoid)

Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +8

DEFENSE

AC 17, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+2 armor, +1 Dex, +3 natural, +1 shield)

hp 16 (3d8+3)

Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +1

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee morningstar +5 (1d8+3)

Ranged javelin +3 (1d6+3)

STATISTICS

Str 16, Dex 13, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 9

Base Atk +2; CMB +5; CMD 16

Feats Intimidating Prowess, Skill Focus (Perception)

Skills Intimidate +7, Perception +8, Stealth +10; Racial Modifiers +4 Intimidate, +4 Stealth

SQ stalker

Languages Common, Goblin

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Stalker (Ex) Perception and Stealth are always class skills for bugbears

Development: If encountered on the outbound leg, advance the PCs to 5-D. If encountered on the inbound leg, for every round after 3 that the combat continues, roll once as per Stolen Cargo on the Random Caravan Events Table as additional raiders hit the caravan while the PCs are distracted, slipping past the guards and cutting some of the animals out of the pack.

 

Encounter 5-D Ambush GM Map

Encounter 5-D and 7-C Player Map Encounter 5-D and 7-C VTT

5-D. Ambush (CR 6)

Preceded by: 5-B or 5-C

The trail widens ahead to a fair sized overlook. Stalled in the road are a number of horses, a human, a half-orc, and a half-elf. They are your rivals. The half-orc turns his head to you and says, "roight I say, that's enough of that!" before going for his bow.

Tired of delaying tactics, the rivals resort to direct force. The three are well schooled in hit and run tactics, and use whatever means they can to create a diversion in the first round (Freya casts obscuring mist or entangle, Jillak and Brint spook the horses to provide cover to make Hide/Stealth checks, taking to the wooded hills. The trio then uses stealth and sniping to split the PCs up and concentrate on single targets when possible. They come to each other's aid when cornered and are not above using an action to buff up rather than making an attack.

Freya (3.5)

Freya

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (half-elf) Cleric 4

Hit Dice: 4d8+4 (18 hp)

Initiative: +0

Speed: 30 ft.
Armor Class: 17 (+5 armor, +2 Dex) touch 12, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+2

Attack: Trident +2 melee (1d8–1) or Shortbow +5 ranged (1d6/×3)
Full Attack: Trident +2 melee (1d8–1) or Shortbow +5 ranged (1d6/×3)

Spells Known: Cleric Spells

Level 0 (5) DC 13 - bleed (2), guidance, light, resistance

Level 1 (4) DC 14 - cause fear, cure light wounds, obscuring mist, entangle,

 Level 2 (3) DC 15 - barkskin, hold person, summon monster

Special Attacks: Spells, Rebuke Undead

Special Qualities: Aura, Half-elf Traits

Saves: Fort +5, Ref +3, Will +7 (+9 vs enchantment)
Abilities: Str 8, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 16, Cha 12
Skills: Concentration +4, Heal +4, Hide +3, Knowledge (nature) +2, Knowledge (Religion) +1, Listen +3, Sense Motive +3, Spot +9
Feats: Light Armor Proficiency, Medium Armor Proficiency, Combat Casting, Shield Proficiency, Simple Weapon Proficiency

Challenge Rating: 3
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral

Languages: Common, Elven, Sylvan

Domains

Plant

Rebuke or command plant creatures as an evil cleric rebukes or commands undead. Use this ability a total number of times per day equal to 3 + your Charisma modifier. This granted power is a supernatural ability.

Water

Turn or destroy fire creatures as a good cleric turns undead. Rebuke, command, or bolster water creatures as an evil cleric rebukes undead. Use these abilities a total number of times per day equal to 3 + your Charisma modifier. This granted power is a supernatural ability.

Combat Gear+1 human-bane arrows (2), +1 orc-bane arrow, potion of cure moderate wounds; Other Gear+1 chain shirt, shortbow with 20 arrows, trident, bird feather token, wooden holy symbol, 256 gp

Jillak (3.5)

Jillak

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (Half-Orc) Fighter 1/Ranger 3

Hit Dice: 1d10+3d8 (23 hp)

Initiative: +3

Speed: 30 ft.
Armor Class: 17, Touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+4 mwk chain shirt, +3 Dex)

Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+6

Attack: Mwk Falchion +6 melee (2d4+3/18–20) or Mwk Composite (+2) Longbow +7 ranged (1d8+2/×3)
Full Attack: Mwk Falchion +6 melee (2d4+3/18–20) or Mwk Composite (+2) Longbow +7 ranged (1d8+2/×3)
Special Attacks: Favored Enemy (human +2)

Special Qualities: Half-orc Traits, Wild Empathy, Track

Saves: Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +0
Abilities: Str 14, Dex 16, Con 10, Int 11, Wis 8, Cha 10
Skills: Climb +3, Handle Animal +7, Intimidate +1, Knowledge (geography) +2, Knowledge (nature) +7, Ride +11, Spot +9, Stealth +3, Survival +7
Feats: Alertness, Armor Proficiency (heavy), Armor Proficiency (light), Armor Proficiency (medium), Endurance, Martial Weapon Proficiency, Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot, Shield Proficiency, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Tower Shield Proficiency

Languages: Common

Challenge Rating: 3

Alignment: Chaotic Neutral

Combat Gear+1 flaming arrows (3), potion of cure moderate wounds, potion of divine favor, potion of shield of faith; Other Gear masterwork chain shirt, masterwork composite longbow (+2 Str) with 20 arrows, masterwork falchion, elixir of hiding, 26 gp

Brint (3.5)

Brint

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (human) Rogue 4

Hit Dice: 4d6 (17 hp)

Initiative: +3

Speed: 30 ft.
Armor Class: 16, Touch 13, flat-footed 13 (+3 armor, +3 Dex)

Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+2

Attack: Mwk Rapier +5 melee (1d6–1/18–20) or Light Crossbow +6 ranged (1d8/19–20)
Full Attack: Mwk Rapier +5 melee (1d6–1/18–20) or Light Crossbow +6 ranged (1d8/19–20)

Special Attacks: Sneak Attack +2d6

Special Qualities: Evasion, Trapfinding, Trap Sense +1, Uncanny Dodge

Saves: Fort +1, Ref +7, Will +2
Abilities: Str 8, Dex 16, Con 10, Int 13, Wis 12, Cha 14

Skills: Bluff +10, Diplomacy +10, Disable Device +9, Disguise +12, Heal +2, Hide +9 Knowledge (local) +1, Listen +5, Move silently +5, Ride +4, Sense Motive +4, Sleight of Hand +4, Spot +8, Tumble +7, Use Magic Device +10
Feats: Armor Prof Light, Combat Expertise, Improved Feint, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Weapon Finesse

Languages: Common

Challenge Rating: 3

Alignment: Chaotic Neutral

Combat Gear potion of cure moderate wounds, scroll of bless, scroll of burning hands, scroll of cure light wounds, scroll of magic missile, scroll of disguise self (2), snapleaf, alchemist's fire (2), holy water, thunderstone; Other Gear masterwork studded leather, light crossbow with 10 bolts, masterwork rapier, masterwork disguise kit, everburning torch, healer's kit, masterwork thieves' tools, wooden holy symbol, 129 gp

Freya (Pathfinder)

Freya CR 3

XP 800

Female Half-elf cleric 4

N Medium humanoid (elf, human)

Init +2; Senses low-light vision; Perception +9

DEFENSE

AC 17, touch 12, flat-footed 15 (+5 armor, +2 Dex)

hp 25 (4d8+4)

Fort +5, Ref +3, Will +8; +2 vs. enchantments

Immune sleep

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee trident +2 (1d8–1)

Ranged shortbow +5 (1d6/×3)

Special Attacks channel positive energy 4/day (DC 13, 2d6), wooden fist (+2, 7 rounds/day)

Domain Spell-Like Abilities (CL 4th; concentration +8)

7/day—storm burst (1d6+2 nonlethal damage)

Cleric Spells Prepared (CL 4th; concentration +8)

2nd—barkskin, hold person (2, DC 16), summon monster

1st—cause fear (DC 15), cure light wounds, obscuring mist, entangle (DC 15), entropic shield 0th (at will)—bleed (2, DC 14), guidance, light

Domains Plant, Weather

STATISTICS

Str 8, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 10, Wis 18, Cha 12

Base Atk +3; CMB +2; CMD 14

Feats Deadly Aim, Martial Weapon Proficiency (shortbow), Skill Focus (Stealth)

Skills Heal +8, Knowledge (nature) +2, Knowledge (religion) +5, Perception +9, Sense Motive +8, Stealth +7

Languages Common, Elven

SQ aura, elf blood

Combat Gear+1 human-bane arrows (2), +1 orc-bane arrow, potion of cure moderate wounds; Other Gear+1 chain shirt, shortbow with 20 arrows, trident, bird feather token, wooden holy symbol, 256 gp

Jillak (Pathfinder)

Jillak CR 3

XP 800

Half-orc ranger 4

NE Medium humanoid (human, orc)

Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +8

DEFENSE

AC 18, touch 14, flat-footed 14 (+4 armor, +4 Dex)

hp 30 (4-D10+4)

Fort +5, Ref +8, Will +2

Defensive Abilities orc ferocity

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee mwk falchion +7 (2d4+3/18–20)

Ranged mwk composite longbow +9 (1d8+2/×3)

Special Attacks favored enemy (humans +2)

Ranger Spells Prepared (CL 1st; concentration +2)

1st—resist energy

STATISTICS

Str 14, Dex 18, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 13, Cha 8

Base Atk +4; CMB +6; CMD 20

Feats Endurance, Point-Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot

Skills Climb +10, Handle Animal +7, Intimidate +1, Knowledge (geography) +5, Knowledge (local) +2, Knowledge (nature) +7, Perception +7, Ride +11, Stealth +8, Survival +7

Languages Common, Orc

SQ favored terrain (plains +2), hunter's bond (companions), orc blood, track +2, weapon familiarity, wild empathy +3

Combat Gear+1 flaming arrows (3), potion of cure moderate wounds, potion of divine favor, potion of shield of faith; Other Gear masterwork chain shirt, masterwork composite longbow (+2 Str) with 20 arrows, masterwork falchion, elixir of hiding, 26 gp

Brint (Pathfinder)

Brint CR 3

XP 800

Human Male rogue 4

CN Medium humanoid (human)

Init +2; Perception +8

DEFENSE

AC 16, touch 12, flat-footed 14 (+3 armor, +2 Dex)

hp 21 (4-D8)

Fort +1, Ref +6, Will +2

Defensive Abilities evasion, trap sense +1, uncanny dodge

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee mwk rapier +3 (1d6–1/18–20)

Ranged light crossbow +5 (1d8/19–20)

Special Attacks sneak attack +2d6

Rogue Spell-Like Abilities (CL 4th, concentration +5)

3/day—prestidigitation

2/day—disguise self

STATISTICS

Str 8, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 13, Wis 12, Cha 18

Base Atk +3; CMB +2; CMD 14

Feats Combat Expertise, Deceitful, Improved Feint

Skills Acrobatics +7, Bluff +10, Diplomacy +10, Disable Device +9, Disguise +13, Heal +4, Knowledge (local) +8, Perception +8, Ride +4, Sense Motive +9, Sleight of Hand +10, Stealth +10, Use Magic Device +11

Languages Common, Elven

SQ rogue talents (major magic, minor magic), trapfinding +2

Combat Gear potion of cure moderate wounds, scroll of bless, scroll of burning hands, scroll of cure light wounds, scroll of magic missile, snapleaf, alchemist's fire (2), holy water, thunderstone; Other Gear mwk studded leather, light crossbow with 10 bolts, masterwork rapier, disguise kit, everburning torch, healer's kit, thieves' tools, wizard's spellbook, wooden holy symbol, 129 gp

Treasure: In addition to their gear, the trio has 4 light riding horses with full harnesses.

Development: Noticeably missing amongst their rival's gear is any coin or bank drafts from the opposing merchant house. The fourth member of the band, a gnome named Hippertook, has sped ahead of his companions in an effort to make it to Cherr's Landing to secure the best deals on shipping and cargo.

Advance the PCs to 5-E.

 

5-E. Landslide

Preceded by: 5-D

A significant landslide blocks the path ahead. After testing the stability of the rubble, you pick your way through to the far side of the blockage. Halfway across the debris field an opening in the side of the mountain catches your eye—a tunnel has been revealed by the fallen rocks.

The tunnel bores through the mountain itself. It slopes slightly uphill, but PCs entering 200 feet into it see a small speck of light far off in the distance. Two halves of an iron casing (shaped like a three-foot long torpedo) lie discarded in the rubble. The casings are inscribed with arcane glyphs and are identifiable as an expended tunnel bore (new magic item) with a DC 20 Knowledge (arcana) check. This item was invented by the skilled mage-engineer Midya Merochek, a hero of the Cyclops Raids a century past. The wizard led a battalion of special troops instrumental in winning the war of maneuver against the enemy; the mage had a solution for every terrain obstacle. His troops were known to bridge chasms and rivers in the blink of an eye, clear roads through forests at the pace of a man's walk, and haul supplies far in excess of standard loads. The mage and the battalion were reported lost just as the final victory was at hand.

The tunnel clearly leads back into the mountain range the PCs have just crossed, away from their destination of Cherr's Landing. It exits into a hidden vale, deep in The Knee.

Development: PCs who elect to follow the tunnel through the mountain advance to Scene 6 - The Salt Mine. PCs who stay the course to Cherr's Landing advance to Scene 7 - Two Trails to Take and earn one speed point.

Bonus content available!

For a side quest that reveals the entire history of the last stand of Midya Merocheck's Lost Battalion, check out the AaWBlog! to explore the Vale of the Spider Eaters, where they met their doom.

 

 

6. The Salt Mine (CR 4 or 6)

Once on the far side of the original tunnel the tattered remnants of half a dozen lost battalion uniforms lie buried in some disturbed rubble. Mixed amongst the human bones are the skeletal structures of three spider eaters, identified with a DC 17 Knowledge (arcana) check. Examining the remains of a skeleton wearing a mage's garb reveals that the deceased creature's ribcage was shattered—likely from within. Though aged, scorch marks on the cave entrance and rubble are identifiable as burns from magical damage.

A Search/Perception check DC 15 reveals a scroll tube containing a scroll of remove paralysis (3.5) or delay poison (Pathfinder).

Midya Merocheck and her followers tunneled right into a nest of spider eaters. A brief firefight ensued and a misdirected spell brought down the tunnel behind them (erosion and time eventually cleared this end of the tunnel in the same fashion as on the far side). The mage then succumbed to the venom of the spider eaters and without her arcane support, the survivors fled. Impregnated with a spider eater egg, the mage perished when the hatchling exploded from her chest some weeks later. A DC 15 Knowledge (arcana)  or Knowledge (history) check gives the likely identity of the mage and her troops. A DC 12 Knowledge (nobility) check indicates that it is likely any survivors from this battle retreated to a more defensible position—a series of caves in the mountainside on the far side of the vale is a likely spot (a few hours march away).

From within one of the caves the final survivors of the lost battalion attempted to flee the valley by boring a new tunnel through the mountains. Their first tunnel drove into a vein of salt, and as they set up a second tunnel bore, a nest of salt worms burrowed out of the vein and attacked. The dried husks of the nine victims remain preserved in the dry air of the tunnel (along with their equipment).

A tunnel similar to the one accessing the valley drives into one of the cavern walls. 120 feet into the passage the walls shift from solid stone to a white mineral: solid salt—white gold. 60 feet ahead a dozen humanoid forms are visible at the blank face of the tunnel.

Hazard: After four hours in the salt mine a DC 16 Fortitude save prevents dehydration. A dehydrated creature takes 1d6 non-lethal damage and gains the fatigued condition. Consuming one gallon of fresh water (which takes 5 minutes) cures 6 points of non-lethal damage, but 8 hours of rest is required to remove the fatigue.

Treasure: The remains of the magical cache of the mage-engineer contains:

10 tunnel bores

2 stone spans

3 heavyload saddles

6 masterwork pack saddles

10 wooden barrels (can store 100 pounds of salt each)

Midya Merochek's travelling spellbook

6th-level spells: greater dispel magic, move earth; 5th-level spells: transmute mud to rock, transmute rock to mud; 4th-level spells: dimension door, stone shape; 3rd-level spells: beast shape I, lightning bolt, shrink item; 2nd-level spells: gust of wind,  fog cloud, rope trick, whipsering wind; 1st-level spells: enlarge person, expeditious retreat, jump, magic missile, mount; Cantrips: all core; Total Value (3.5): 5,200 gp; Sale Value: 2,600 gp Total Value (Pathfinder): 6,900 gp; Sale Value: 3,450 gp

Treasure: Salt

PCs may mine white gold to ship on their caravan. 100 pounds of salt is equal to one cargo unit.

A martial pick (weapon) mines at a rate of 150 pounds per 8 hours work plus 50 pounds for every +1 enhancement bonus.

Using a miner's pick a creature can mine 300 pounds of salt every 8 hours.

A masterwork tool increase this output to 400 pounds. If the PCs specified they wanted to stock mining equipment on their caravan, they are assumed to have masterwork tools.

 

Salt-Worm

Creatures: Mining the salt attracts salt worms after four hours. Gauge how many creatures to include (1-3) based on when the PCs choose to mine salt. If the PC mine salt at the end of the day after a long day of combat, only one worm appears. If the PCs are mining salt on their return trip and this is the only encounter for the day consider sending 2 (CR 6) or even 3 worms (CR 7) at the party.

Salt Worm (3.5)

Salt Worm

Size/Type: Large Aberration

Hit Dice: 4d8+8 (26 hp)

Initiative: +1

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares), burrow 15 ft.

Armor Class: 15 (+1 Dex, +5 natural, -1 size), touch 10, flat-footed 13

Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+10 (+18 when attached)

Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d8+3 plus attach), Tailslap +5 melee (1d8+1)

Full Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d8+3 plus attach) and Tailslap +5 (1d8+1)

Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.

Special Attacks: Attach, Blood Drain, Sensitive Tail

Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., Regenerating Maw, Tremorsense 60 ft., Scent

Saves: Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +6

Abilities: Str 16, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 3, Wis 14, Cha 5

Skills: Climb +10, Spot +10, Stealth +7 (+15 in rocky terrain); Racial Modifiers +8 Stealth in rocky terrain

Feats: Alertness, Dodge

Environment: any underground

Organization: solitary or cluster (2–5)

Challenge Rating: 4

Treasure: none

Alignment: Always Neutral

Advancement: 5-9 HD (Huge)

Level Adjustment:

Special Abilities

Attach (Ex) When a salt worm hits with a bite attack, it latches onto its target and automatically grapples. The worm loses its Dexterity bonus to AC but holds on with great tenacity and automatically inflicts bite damage each round. A salt worm has a +8 racial bonus to maintain its grapple on a foe once attached. An attached worm can be struck with a weapon or grappled itself—if its prey manages to win a grapple check or Escape Artist check against it, the salt worm is removed. The front segment of the worm, including its maw, may also be sliced from the body of the worm by dealing 10 points of slashing damage in a single hit, freeing attached prey

Blood Drain (Ex) A salt worm sucks salt and water from its victim at the end of each turn it is attached, inflicting 1 point of Strength and Constitution damage.

Regenerating Maw (Ex) A saltworm regenerates its maw in 1d4 rounds. While the wound regenerates, it may make bite attack with a -2 penalty but loses its attach special ability.

Sensitive tail (Ex) A salt worm may attack with its tail while attached to a victim.

Salt Worm (Pathfinder)

Salt Worm   CR 4

XP 1,200

N Large aberration

Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft.; scent, Perception +10

DEFENSE

AC 15, touch 10, flat-footed 13 (+1 dex, +5 natural, -1 size)

hp 45 (6d8+18)

Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +7

DR 5/slashing

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft., burrow 15 ft.

Melee bite +7 (1d8+3 plus attach), tailslap +7 (1d8+1)

Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft.

Special Attacks blood drain, sensitive tail

STATISTICS

Str 16, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 3, Wis 14, Cha 5

Base Atk +4; CMB +7; CMD 18 (can't be tripped)

Feats Power Attack, Multi-attack, Toughness

Skills Climb +10, Perception +10, Stealth +7 (+15 in rocky terrain); Racial Modifiers +8 Stealth in rocky terrain

Languages Aklo (cannot speak)

SQ regenerating maw

ECOLOGY

Environment any underground

Organization solitary or cluster (2–5)

Treasure incidental

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Attach (Ex) When a salt worm hits with a bite attack, it latches onto its target and automatically grapples. The worm loses its Dexterity bonus to AC but holds on with great tenacity and automatically inflicts bite damage each round. A salt worm has a +8 racial bonus to maintain its grapple on a foe once attached. An attached worm can be struck with a weapon or grappled itself—if its prey manages to win a grapple check or Escape Artist check against it, the salt worm is removed. The front segment of the worm, including its maw, may also be sliced from the body of the worm by dealing 10 points of slashing damage in a single hit, freeing attached prey

Blood Drain (Ex) A salt worm sucks salt and water from its victim at the end of each turn it is attached, inflicting 1 point of Strength and Constitution damage.

Regenerating Maw (Ex) A saltworm regenerates its maw in 1d4 rounds. While the wound regenerates, it may make bite attack with a -2 penalty but loses its attach special ability.

Sensitive Tail (Ex) A salt worm may attack with its tail while attached to a victim.

Development Mining salt costs one speed point for every day spent on site. Any mined salt not removed from the caves is consumed by salt worms unless stored in wooden containers. If the PCs have to mine salt a second time because salt worms ate their previous efforts, the aberrations may make a second appearance.

 

7. Two Trails to Take

Once over The Knee, the party must choose whether to take the inland road or the coastal road to Cherr's Landing. From what they know of the area, the coastal road is shorter than the inland road and skilled riders can travel it even more quickly. The inland road meanders and often requires good survival skills to avoid getting lost.

PCs choosing the coastal route advance to 7-A: Shipwreck. Taking the inland road advances them to 7-B: Boar Attack.

The party also has a chance to earn a speed point for this scene base on their current average speed.

Average Speed of Party
35 feet or greater+1 Speed Point
30 feet+0 Speed Points
Less than 30 feet-1 Speed Point

 

7-A. The Sailor

Travel on the coastal road provides occasional glimpses of sandy beaches at the base of steep bluffs, but often detours inland for stretches of a few miles. After one such detour you come upon a body lying in the middle of the road about a quarter of a mile away from the cliffs and beaches below.

The corpse is that of a sailor from the Swiftsure, the trading vessel lost at sea. After the monster attack, the waterlogged vessel floated on the current for some weeks before washing ashore nearby. The sailor was one of a handful of survivors who grew weaker and weaker from wounds, exposure, and lack of water. By the time the ship broached the rocks, all but this man had perished. The lone survivor stumbled up the bluffs before his condition overwhelmed him.

The sailor has a tattoo of the ship's name on his back (which the PCs might recognize from the tales of its loss) and his torso is covered with huge red and black circles (giant sucker wounds—identified with a DC 15 Heal check). His tracks (found with a DC 10 Survival check) lead back to the cliff edge and beach below .

If they ignore the trail, award one speed point and advance the PCs to Act Two: Cherr's Landing, and treat this encounter as if they refused to investigate the ship (see 7-B below). Otherwise advance to 7-B.

Encounter 7-B Shipwreck GM and Player Map

 

Encounter 7-B Player Map Encounter 7-B VTT

7-B. Shipwreck (CR 5 or 6 plus hazards)

From the clifftops the party spies the ship on the rocks. The vessel is in imminent danger of being bashed to pieces by the surf, but PCs willing to risk it might find decent salvage in the cargo hold.

The adventurers may also think to take the ship’s bell (which weighs 15 pounds) as proof of its destruction for an insurance claim later on if they’re wise to business dealings in the area—known to any PC that succeeds a DC 15 Knowledge (local) check.

It takes 10 trips to recover 60 Units of Cargo from the wreck. A DC 15 Profession (sailor), Use Rope/Disable Device or Knowledge (engineering) check permits a PC to reduce the number of trips by one by crafting floats from wreckage (each PC may make one check) to a minimum of 5 trips. For each trip, roll once on the Salvage Random Event table. Treasure (including the bell) can be carried out as part of any remaining trips.

 

Salvage Random Events

Percentile DieEvent
01-25No Event
26-35Ship Rolls in surf—Reflex save DC 14 or be slammed into bulkhead for 2d6 damage
36-45Falling Rigging on deck smashes into 1d3 random PCs—Drop and lose cargo or take 4-D6 damage Reflex DC 14 for half damage
46-55Huge wave washes PCs into surf—DC 15 Swim check to make it to shore or go under. Lose any cargo carried as you struggle in the surf.
56-65Collapsing bulkhead buries 1d6 CU of remaining salvage
66-75Ship's Log discovered floating in the hold—see Developments
76-85Collapsing bulkhead reveals 500 gp of silver ingots (50%) or 200 gp of copper ingots (50%)
86-90Shifting cargo reveals 1d3 1-lb. bars of mithral (25%), 1d4 1-lb. bars of adamantine (25%), or 10 lbs. of cold iron (50%)
91-00Encounter triggered while PCs are in the hold—see below

 

Lacedon-Jacob-Blackmon

Creatures The other sailors who perished while Swiftsure drifted to landfall drank not only of seawater (driving themselves mad), but of each others' blood once the madness set in. Putrefying in the lower hold where the last man standing had stashed their bodies, they rose as powerful lacedons. The undead attack when the party completes their salvage, or in the cargo hold itself if indicated by the Salvage Random Events Table. If the battle takes place in the hold, increases the CR by one, as the ghasts can use the half-flooded chamber to drag paralyzed PCs under (and even into the lower hold) to drown. The stench of the ghasts is evident as they make their way stealthily through the waters (DC 18 Spot/Perception check) but does not affect the PCs until the creatures rise up out of the depths.

Scaling the Encounter The undead attack once half the salvage has been removed rather than engaging the PCs on the beach. They attempt to drag paralyzed PCs under water to drown them.

(3) Ghasts, Lacedon (3.5)

Ghast, Lacedon

Size/Type: Medium Undead

Hit Dice: 4d12+3 (29 hp)

Initiative: +3

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares), swim 30 ft.

Armor Class: 17 (+3 Dex, +4 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 14

Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+5

Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d8+3 plus paralysis)

Full Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d8+3 plus paralysis) and 2 Claws +3 melee (1d4+1 plus paralysis)

Special Attacks: Ghoul fever, Paralyisis, Stench

Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., Undead Traits, +2 Turn Resistance

Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +6

Abilities: Str 17, Dex 17, Con —, Int 13, Wis 14, Cha 16

Skills: Balance +7, Climb +9, Hide +8, Jump +9, Move Silently +8, Spot +8

Feats: Multiattack, Toughness

Challenge Rating: 3

Treasure: Standard

Alignment: Always chaotic evil

Special Abilities

Ghoul Fever (Su) Disease—bite, Fortitude DC 15, incubation period 1 day, damage 1d3 Con and 1d3 Dex. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Paralysis (Ex) Those hit by a ghast’s bite or claw attack must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or be paralyzed for 1d4+1 rounds. Even elves can be affected by this paralysis. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Stench (Ex) The stink of death and corruption surrounding these creatures is overwhelming. Living creatures within 10 feet must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or be sickened for 1d6+4 minutes. A creature that successfully saves cannot be affected again by the same ghast’s stench for 24 hours. A delay poison or neutralize poison spell removes the effect from a sickened creature. Creatures with immunity to poison are unaffected, and creatures resistant to poison receive their normal bonus on their saving throws. The save DC is Charisma-based.

(3) Ghasts, Lacedon (Pathfinder)

Lacedon (Ghast) CR 2

XP 800 (each)

CE Medium undead

Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +9

DEFENSE

AC 18, touch 14, flat-footed 16 (+4 Dex, +4 natural)

hp 17 (2d8+8)

Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +7

Defensive Abilities channel resistance +4

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft., swim 30 ft.

Melee bite +5 (1d6+3 plus disease and paralysis) and 2 claws +5 (1d6+1 plus paralysis)

Special Attacks paralysis (1d4+1 rounds, DC 15), stench (10-foot radius)

STATISTICS

Str 17, Dex 19, Con —, Int 17, Wis 18, Cha 18

Base Atk +1; CMB +4; CMD 18

Feats Weapon

Skills Acrobatics +6, Climb +8, Perception +9, Stealth +9, Swim +5

Languages Common

ECOLOGY

Environment any water

Organization solitary, gang (2–4), or pack (7–12)

Treasure standard

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Disease (Su) Ghoul Fever: Bite—injury; save Fort DC 15; onset 1 day; frequency 1/day; effect 1d3 Con and 1d3 Dex damage; cure 2 consecutive saves. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Improved Paralysis (Su) A ghast's paralysis even affects elves.

Stench (Ex) The stink of death and corruption surrounding these creatures is overwhelming, granting them the stench extraordinary ability (10-foot radius, Fort DC 15 negates, sickened for 1d6+4 minutes).

Treasure Fighting the undead in the hold knocks loose 1 mithral and 2 adamantine 1-lb. bars.

Developments PCs who recover the ship's log will more easily prove the loss of the ship for the insurance claim. A small cave on the beach provides a safe place to stash the salvaged cargo until the party returns.

If the PCs discover the wreck but do not proceed inside, the ship is totally smashed to pieces and all its cargo is lost. Use the encounter with the ghouls in Cherr's Landing as the party goes about their business (perhaps while negotiating purchases in the docks districts).

 

Encounter 7-C Boar Attack GM MAP

Encounter 5-D and 7-C Player Map Encounter 5-D and 7-C VTT

7-C. Boar Attack (CR 5)

Dire BoarAs the PCs lead their horses through the inland forest (where low handing branches make riding difficult) they come upon a pile of fly-covered offal pulled off to the side of the trail. A DC 15 Knowledge (nature) check identifies the eviscerated organs as pig's guts. Tracking blood trails 10 yards into the forest (DC 9 Survival check) lead the party to wild boar carcasses hanging and draining from tree branches overhead. There are 6 such "gifts" scattered amongst the PCs’ route. The last three carcasses radiate a faint aura of transmutation.

Red Jansen (a local homesteader) sells the most succulent hams on the eastern coast. He does so by feeding his pigs apples laced with potions of bull's strength, cat's grace and bear’s endurance then slaughtering them while under they are under the spells’ effects. The magic interacts with the adrenaline, fat, and muscle of the beasts to provide Jansen’s hams a distinctive taste.

Jansen is experimenting by trying the process on wild boar that roam the woods near his farm. His experiment goes horribly wrong; a huge dire boar happens upon the tasty treats the farmer left in the woods, and is now far more powerful than Jansen's usual game.

The PCs spot Jansen ahead in a small clearing with a spear braced for a charge (pointing in the PCs direction). With a huge roar and rustle of brush the beast bursts out of the forest and charges the hapless PCs, caught between the creature and the farmer.

Transmuted Dire Boar (3.5)

Transmuted Dire Boar

Size/Type: Large Animal

Hit Dice: 7d8+35 (66 hp)

Initiative: +2

Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)

Armor Class: 17 (+2, Dex, -1 size, +6 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 15

Base Attack/Grapple: +5/+19

Attack: Gore +15 melee (1d8+15)

Full Attack: Gore +15 melee (1d8+15)

Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.

Special Attacks: Ferocity

Special Qualities: Low-light vision, Scent, bulls strength, cat’s grace, bear’s endurance (included in stat block. Duration: 10 rounds remain)

Saves: Fort +8, Ref +5, Will +8

Abilities: Str 31, Dex 14, Con 21, Int 2, Wis 13, Cha 8

Skills: Listen +8, Spot +8

Feats: Alertness, Endurance, Iron Will

Challenge Rating: 5

Treasure: None

Alignment: Always neutral

Special Abilities

Ferocity (Ex)

A dire boar is such a tenacious combatant that it continues to fight without penalty even while disabled or dying.

Transmuted Dire Boar (Pathfinder)

Transmuted Dire Boar (Daeodon)        CR 5

XP 1,600

N Large animal

Init +4; Senses low-light vision, scent; Perception +12

DEFENSE

AC 17, touch 11, flat-footed 17 (+2 Dex,+6 natural, –1 size)

hp 52 (5-D8+30)

Fort +7, Ref +6, Will +2

Defensive Abilities ferocity

OFFENSE

Speed 40 ft.

Melee gore +10 (2d6+12)

STATISTICS

Str 27, Dex 14, Con 17, Int 2, Wis 13, Cha 8

Base Atk +3; CMB +10; CMD 20

Feats Improved Initiative, Skill Focus (Perception), Toughness

Skills Perception +12

SQ bull’s strength, cat’s grace, bear’s endurance (included in stat block. Duration: 10 rounds remain)

ECOLOGY

Environment temperate or tropical forests

Organization solitary, pair, or herd (3–8)

Treasure none

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Ferocity (Ex) A creature with ferocity remains conscious and can continue fighting even if its hit point total is below 0. The creature is still staggered and loses 1 hit point each round. A creature with ferocity still dies when its hit point total reaches a negative amount equal to its Constitution score.

Development Jansen explains why the dire boar was so dangerous and invites his rescuers back to his farm for a meal and rest. If the PCs accept his request, advance them to 7-D. If they turn down his invitation, they gain one speed point and arrive in Cherr's Landing.

If the PCs bypass 7-D on the outbound journey be sure to give them a chance to make a detour on the return trip (Encounter 11).

 

 

7-D. The Homestead

Preceded by: 7-C

A snug homestead rests in a small dell surrounded by low hills and forest. Smoke rises from other farms nestled in the valley.

A small community of homesteaders develops the land here, and Jansen relates their good fortune—a bumper crop of grain graced the valley last fall, so even with winter just ending, the barns and haylofts are full to overflowing.

Fodder and foodstuffs may be purchased at the homestead, allowing PCs to top off their cargoes on the return trip.

Jansen's wife is a 4th level adept who brews up potions for those in the valley. She has 2d4 potions available at standard prices from the adept spell list with a base price of no more than 500 gp. A PC is able to specify the desired item 75% of the time.

Development On the outbound leg advance the PCs to Act Two Cherr's Landing. On the inbound leg, return to Encounter 11 for details on topping off the caravan's cargo load.

 

 

 

Act Two - Cherr's Landing

Act Two-Three Flowchart_full-page portraitAfter two to three weeks of travel the PCs arrive in Cherr's Landing. If they took the coastal road, award them one speed point. If more than half the party makes a DC 16 Ride check (or DC 16 Fortitude save if dismounted) award them an additional speed point as they hustled most of the way along the easy trails.

If the PCs traveled by the inland road, a DC 19 Survival check avoids getting lost (and losing a speed point). PCs with a set of complete maps from the half-orc mapmaker gain a +2 circumstance bonus to the check, an incomplete set gives a +1 bonus. PCs with a false set suffer a -4 circumstance penalty to the check. Failure by 5 or more on the check results in the loss of an additional speed point before the PCs find their way.

Cherr’s Landing                      
LG Large Town
Corruption 1; Crime 1; Economy 1; Law -1; Lore -2; Society 5
Qualities prosperous
Danger 5

Demographics

Government Council (merchants)
Population 3,500 (58% human, 18% halfling, 12% half-orc, 8% gnome, 3% half-elf, 1% dwarf, 1% other)
Notable NPCs
Council Member Anerall Vyru (Female elf expert 7/aristocrat 1)
Council Member G’hyllei (Male gnome expert 6)

 Council Member Theodore Green (Male human expert 4/aristocrat 2)

 Master of Caravans Renaldo Vasilly (CN male human rogue 7)

 Master of Courts Nachek Pimonov (LE male human rogue 3/wizard

5/arcane trickster 5)

Marketplace

Base Limit 1,300 gp; Purchase Limit 7,500 gp; Spellcasting 5th;
Minor Items 3d4; Medium Items 2d4; Major Items 1d4

At the mouth of the Shilmur River the deep harbor of Cherr's Landing provides a safe haven for the ships of the eastern ocean. Located at the end of an overland route to the Klavek interior, Cherr's Landing is the premier fishing and trade center of the eastern shore. The confluence of trade in the city has even drawn small trading communities of demi-humans from across the globe in search of profit and prosperity.

*Note - If your group is familiar with Adventure A18 - Storm's Wake, the events of this module occur after Storm is slain and the town is on its way to recovery. Otherwise, the events occur prior to the dragon's depredations, and the rest of the Saatman's Empire adventure path saga.

The PCs may make one attempt to learn about the recent goings on in the town as they make their way into the city center. The information yielded from a Gather Information/Diplomacy check is delineated below:

DC 8 Caravans from Mohkba arrive at the end of midsummer—about six weeks away. Until midsummer, the only transport animals to be had in the city are those being bred to replace losses suffered on the yearly caravan route.

DC 13 There are three breeders of caravan animals in the city; Lev Valiery, Ivan Rostovak and Konstantin Grigiorovich. Each specializes in a different type of animal and have been known to run small trading missions along the coast in the off season.

DC 13 All merchants of the city pay the Master of Caravans Renaldo Vasilly their respects, especially if they wish to avoid any unpleasantness while going about their business.

DC 18 The spring court session is welcomed after the ennui of long winter nights. Seating is standing room only as the townsfolk watch the judge, Nachek Pimonov, skewer attorneys on both sides of the aisle. There are some who say Pimonov's delight in hanging a case on the most obscure technicality is a bit unseemly, but no one has ever suggested that the Master of Courts is corruptible.

 

8. Negotiations, Preparations, Assassination

The encounters below describe the preparations PCs make for the return to Svest. Reveal the speed points earned thus far: it costs one speed point to attempt a task. Certain tasks may be attempted more than once, and some require multiple attempts to complete. Unspent speed points provide a bonus to the success conditions at the conclusion of the adventure. Speed points may dip into the negatives to complete needed tasks. The group may not split up to attempt more than one activity at a time .

The competition's final agent, the gnome sorcerer Hippertook, arrives in town with a total of 5 speed points. Any speed points earned by the PCs in excess of 5 may be spent prior to Hippertook's arrival with no chance of interference from the arcanist. Once the party’s speed point total reaches 5 the gnome and the PCs alternate the spending of speed points until the adventurers leave town or the gnome spends all of his five speed points. A straight D20 die roll determines who goes first. Once the gnome's speed points are consumed, his caravan leaves town (PCs may continue to spend speed points if they desire).

Hippertook accomplishes his activities in the following order: Paying Respects, Hiring the Caravan, Enhancing the Caravan, and Haggling for Cargo. He spends his final speed point gathering mercenaries to attack the PCs on the road.

If the PCs do not pursue an insurance claim (8-F), use the encounter with the assassins some time after Hippertook arrives in town.

Bonus content available:

For an additional encounter at the Burned Mill where the PCs may salvage mill gearing, check the AaWBlog! (adventureaweek.com) where you can find it for free. Search for the tag "Burned Mill" to find the post.

 

8-A. Paying Respects

Painter_Paul_CezanneIncoming merchants count on Renaldo's sage advice when it comes to the inner workings of trade expeditions. Local custom is to provide Renaldo with a gift, something a PC that succeeds on a DC 13 Knowledge (local) check will be aware of. For every 100 gp in value, the party may apply a circumstance bonus of +1 on any preparation activity (to a maximum of +5 on any single check) as Renaldo repays the gift by influencing merchants and officials in town.

Failure to pay their respects in a timely fashion hampers the PCs activities. A cumulative -2 circumstance penalty applies to each preparation activity in turn. The first time the PCs fail, the NPC they are dealing with informs them that it has gotten about that they have insulted Vasilly. The urbane Master of Caravans shows no annoyance with their tardiness when the PCs do appear before him, but the insult done to him can only be reversed by a gift that matches or exceeds the current circumstance penalty (at an exchange of 100 gp per -1 penalty). A lesser gift may offset some of the penalty and at the least keeps it from worsening in subsequent actions.

Regardless of the state of their gifts, Renaldo is generous in his advice. He gives a fair opinion (see Reputation and Risks in Encounter 8-D) of the breeders who can assemble a caravan (see Player’s Handout) and can speak to the various activities the PCs may indulge in Cherr's Landing. He can identify the tunnel bore or the torc worn by the cyclops—both items initiate a recounting of the tale of Midya Merochek and his lost battalion. Renaldo states that finding the final resting place of the lost battalion would surely provide magical artifacts for traversing the mountains. He does not accept this magic as a gift, saying that the party would do well to hold it close until they have completed their mission.

Renaldo suggests the PCs rely on the advice of their caravan master to select their cargo but advises them to use any rumors or information they may have picked up to fine tune their cargo selection.

 

8-B. The Money Changer

Bank drafts drawn on Svest merchant houses may be converted to trade scrip here. If the PCs neglect to do so, the cost of their caravan is increased by 10% and the value of their cargo is reduced by 10% to reflect the less negotiable letters of credit they bear from their patrons. The party may also change personal coin or treasure into Klavekian coin at an exchange rate of 80%. PCs increase the exchange rate on treasure by 1% for every point above 10 on a DC 10 Appraise check (to a maximum of 95%). Attempting to sell the cyclops torc reveals its history if the adventurers have not already discovered it.

 

8-C. Sell Quilted Silks

The party may sell quilted silks at full value and add the funds to their caravan stake. They may also sell any imported magic (including found treasure) during the same action. The purchase limit (7,500 gp) of the city applies to all transactions. Sold magic yields 70% of its market price with a DC 25 Appraise, Spellcraft or Profession (merchant) check. The sale price is increased (or decreased) by one percent for every point of difference from the base DC. There are no buyers for the unique items from the lost battalion's cache, although the broker promises to make inquiries and send word to Svest in care of the PCs' patron if he locates any.

 

8-D Hiring the Caravan

The three breeders of caravan animals in the city—Lev Valiery, Ivan Rostovak and Konstantin Grigiorovich—can each assemble a caravan from animals currently being trained to replace losses from the inbound Mohkba convoys and agree to serve as caravan master for the trip to Svest.

Player's Handout #2 gives the caravan's mechanical statistics. The PCs learn this information by interviewing each breeder in turn, or the Master of Caravans can illuminate them in one shot. Other than general reputation and risks, the party must discover each breeder's agenda and possible advantages through interaction.

It costs one speed point to interview and negotiate a potential contract with a specific breeder. A DC 15 Sense Motive check reveals his agenda. If the PCs have brought sample wares from Svest, they add a +2 circumstance bonus to this check. Exceeding the check allows the PCs to discern the agendas of the other breeders from information revealed in the ongoing interview. For every 5 points exceeding the DC provide the agenda of one of the competitors.

Regardless of whether additional agendas are revealed, more speed points are required to negotiate a contract with a different breeder. It costs no speed points to return to a breeder and close on a previously negotiated contract.

The total travel time to Svest is four weeks by mule and three by horse. Consumption of grain and fodder by each caravan has already been factored into the statistics.

Development If the party have not closed on a contract by the time Hippertook assembles his caravan, the gnome makes a deal with Konstantin Grigiorovich, removing Caravan 3 from the PCs' options. Once a caravan is selected by the adventurers, deduct the cost from the funds available for the caravan stake. The remaining coin is invested in cargo. PCs may hold back some reserves, or use the fund to hire additional guards or improvements, but their caravan leader reminds them that they only make a return on investment, not on overhead expenses.

 

Caravan Mechanical Benefits and Leader Agendas.

Caravan 1 - Lev Valiery's Mule Train: This caravan receives a +2 circumstance bonus on the Injured Animal and Grain Spoilage events on the Random Caravan Events Table.

Agenda: Lev is desperate to recoup his losses on the mill. Selling his animals early allows him to pay off his creditors and provides a small stake for him to invest in personal cargo to carry south. If the route is proven viable, Lev intends to set up a regular route which means he will be in the market for animals (as well as personnel). GM Info: Lev not only buys back his caravan (minus any adjustments for losses) at full price in Svest, he also picks up the second month's pay for personnel. PCs earn 2 trade points if they hire Lev's pack train.

 

Caravan 2 - Ivan Rostovak's Courier Horses: This caravan earns an extra speed point whenever a caravan speed check is made and receives a -2 circumstance penalty on the Injured Animal and Grain Spoilage events on the Random Caravan Events Table.

Agenda: Rostovak is certain he can make it to Svest and back in time to place his animals on the outbound Mohkba route and will organize his couriers to ship fodder to speed the way. GM Info: PCs gain one free extra feed enhancement. Rostovak lowballs the party when purchasing back his animals in Svest—the quality of horses mean buyers in Svest are uninterested. PCs lose 2 trade points as a result.

 

Caravan 3 - Konstantin Grigiorovich's Draft Horses: This caravan receives a +2 circumstance bonus on the Stolen Cargo event on the Random Caravan Events Table.

Agenda Konstantin has enough stock to service both his Mohkba caravan commitments, as well as providing a relief train to Svest; he is also willing to provide capital in the venture. GM Info: Award the PCs 2 trade points. The PCs may earn this investment even if they don't hire his horses as long as they discover Grigoioravich's agenda.

Players Handout 2

8-E Enhancing the Caravan

One speed point is required to locate, purchase, and assemble each upgrade type, although any quantity may be purchased for the expenditure of the speed point.

Masterwork packs: One set of 6 masterwork saddles allows lamed animals to continue to carry cargo when injured. Cost: 300 gp

Replacement animals: Four horses or mules to replace those lamed or slain enroute to Svest. Failure to have replacement animals may result in abandoning cargo on the side of the road.

Heavyload pack saddle: This magical saddle increases cargo capacity as per caravan statistics. Cost: 2,000 each

Extra Feed: Based out of Cherr's Landing these smaller pack trains deliver fodder and return to the city. This improvement allows the caravan to ignore the Grain Spoilage event on the Random Caravan Events Table.

 

Encounter 8-F Insurance Claims GM Map

Encounter 8-F Player Map Encounter 8-F VTT

8-F Insurance claims (CR 5)

The insurer Fydor Skioroski does everything in his power to deny, delay and otherwise wriggle out of the terms of the policy. This encounter has the potential to burn off many of the PCs' speed points; after they commence, the GM should indicate that the wheels of bureaucracy turn slowly.

One speed point is required to file a claim. PCs must present one of three items: the notarized affidavit from Svest, the ship's bell or the ship's log (from Encounter 7-A the Shipwreck) for the claim to be recognized. If they are unable to present any of these, the claim is denied outright. If they are able to present only one item, the insurer informs them there is a three-month waiting period before the ship is legally declared lost (and any claims paid).

If they present two out of three of these items the claim is acknowledged, but Skioroski agrees to pay only 5,000 gp in trade scrip up front. The remainder of the funds are provided in the form of Mohkba Caravan Shares, which are fungible only when the caravan arrives from Mohkba in 6 weeks time.

If the PCs are unhappy with any of these results, they may take Fydor to court. The Master of Courts, Nachek Pimonov is a legal sadist, and delights in skewering both plaintiff and defendant with arcane bits of legal knowledge and watching them twist in the wind. His court is well attended by the city folk; there is not a better free show to be found in the city limits.

Petitioning the court consumes one speed point for each petition and improves the PCs standing by one step. The PCs wage a legal battle with the defendant and the judge to advance their position with each petition until they are satisfied—the order below is presented from worst to best.

  • The party use the court process to validate an un-notarized affidavit. This begins the three month waiting period to have the ship declared legally lost.
  • The three month waiting period may be waived; Skioroski offers payment as stipulated above to settle the claim.
  • PC may argue for better payment terms. For each petition, Nachek Pimonov forces Skiorski to pay out an additional 5,000 gp in Trade Scrip. PCs may make this petition twice. On the third attempt, Skiorski admits he is out of funds until he can cash his Mohkba Caravan Shares. The judge rules that the insurance broker must pay interest on the outstanding debt, increasing the PCs' trade points by 1.

PCs may attempt to push two or more petitions past the court with a single action, but they risk angering the judge. As they begin to trade legal barbs with Pimonov, they should be warned that failing this check may set them back. A DC 26 Diplomacy check is required to improve their standing as per the standard petition sequence. Each 5 points exceeding the check allows them to win an additional petition. Failure indicates that the party makes no progress for the expenditure of their speed point. Failure by 5 or more points results in the Judge dismissing the entire claim for three months (when it can be resubmitted if the ship has not appeared).

Creatures: If the PCs take Skioroski to court he engages the services of two halfing assassins to disappear his legal troubles. The attempt takes place on the way to court.

Tactics A duo of expatriates from Picollo hide on opposite balconies as the PCs make their way down a 20-foot wide street. From their perch 10 feet above, they snipe at the party (opposed Stealth vs Spot/Perception—the assassins take a -20 modifier to remain concealed on this check). Jennya has blanketed the area with silence and if unspotted, the team waits until the party enters the silent zone before attacking. Jennya uses her metamagic feat or rod to animate rope, entangling the party and makes obscene gestures to inspire courage and other bardic feats in the silence while Simeon hurls daggers until his foes close with him. The halflings jump off their balconies and retreat down the alley once the PCs reach them. They then work in tandem to defeat their foes. A DC 10 Climb check scales the walls to reach the assassins' hiding spots.

Jenya Birckerbat (3.5)

Jennya Brickerbat

Size/Type: Small Humanoid (Halfling) Bard 4

Hit Dice: 4d6+4 (18 hp)

Initiative: +2

Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares)
Armor Class: 17 (+4 armor, +2 Dex, +1 size), Touch 13, flat-footed 15

Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+0

Attack: Mwk Shortsword +7 melee (1d6+1/19–20) or Sling +7 ranged (1d4+1)
Full Attack:

Spells Per Day 3/3/1

Spells Known: Bard Spells

2nd (1/day) DC 15—misdirection, silence

1st (3/day) DC 14—animate rope, cure light wounds, lesser confusion,

0th (3/day) DC 13—daze, detect magic, flare, ghost sound, mending, read magic

Special Attacks: Bardic Performance 4/day (Countersong, Distraction, Fascinate, Inspire Competence +2, Inspire Courage +1), Spells

Special Qualities: Halfling Traits

Saves: Fort +3, Ref +7 , Will +5 (+7 vs fear)
Abilities: Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 8, Wis 10, Cha 16
Skills:, Bluff +7, Climb +3, Concentration +1, Diplomacy +4, Jump +4, Listen +2, Hide +13, Move Silently +4, Perform (comedy) +10, Tumble +9, Use Magic Device +5
Feats: Silent Spell, Weapon Finesse

Challenge Rating: 3
Alignment: Neutral Evil
Languages: Common, Gnome, Sylvan

Combat Gear potion of cure moderate wounds, silent metamagic rod (lesser), tanglefoot bag; Other Gear masterwork chain shirt, masterwork shortsword, sling with 20 bullets, 100 ft. silk rope (in 25 ft. lengths), 30 gp

Simeon Crulsticker (3.5)

Simeon Crulsticker CR 3

Size/Type: Small Humanoid (Halfling) Fighter 4

Hit Dice: 4d10+8 (30 hp)

Initiative: +3

Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares)
Armor Class: 19, (+5 armor, +3 Dex, +1 size) Touch 14, Flat-Footed 16

Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+1

Attack: Mwk Dagger +11 melee (1d3+3/19–20/x2) or Dagger +11 ranged (1d3+3/19–20/x2)
Full Attack: Mwk Dagger +9 melee (1d3+3/19–20/x2) and Mwk Dagger +9 melee (1d3+2/19–20/x2) or Dagger +9 ranged (1d3+3/19–20/x2) and Mwk Dagger +9 ranged (1d3+2/19–20/x2)
Special Qualities: Halfling Traits

Saves: Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +2 (+4 vs Fear)
Abilities: Str 12, Dex 17, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 12, Cha 8
Skills: Climb +3, Jump +5, Listen +3, Hide +18 (base +8), Move Silently +5, Tumble +5
Feats: Armor Prof Heavy, Armor Prof Light, Armor Prof Medium, Martial Weap Prof, Point Blank Shot, Shield Proficiency, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Tower Shield Proficiency, Two-Weapon fighting, Weapon Focus (dagger), Weapon Specialization (dagger)

Languages: Common, Halfling

Challenge Rating: 3

Alignment: Chaotic Evil

Combat Gear feather token (whip), elixir of hiding*; Other Gear+1 chain shirt, daggers (6), masterwork daggers (2), 24 gp

 

* expended—included in stat block.

Jennya Bickerbat (Pathfinder)

Jennya Brickerbat CR 3

XP 800

Halfling bard 4

CE Small humanoid (halfling)

Init +3; Perception +1

DEFENSE

AC 17, touch 13, flat-footed 14 (+4 armor, +3 Dex)

hp 25 (4d8+4)

Fort +2, Ref +8, Will +4; +2 vs. fear, +4 vs. bardic performance, language-dependent, and sonic

OFFENSE

Speed 20 ft.

Melee mwk short sword +8 (1d4/19–20)

Ranged sling +7 (1d4)

Special Attacks bardic performance 14 rounds/day (countersong, distraction, fascinate, inspire competence +2, inspire courage +1)

Bard Spells Known (CL 4th; concentration +8)

2nd (2/day)—misdirection (DC 16), silence

1st (4/day)—animate rope, cure light wounds (DC 15), lesser confusion (DC 15), ventriloquism (DC 15)

0 (at will)—daze (DC 14), detect magic, flare (DC 14), ghost sound (DC 14), mending, read magic

STATISTICS

Str 11, Dex 16, Con 10, Int 12, Wis 8, Cha 18

Base Atk +3; CMB +3; CMD 16

Feats Silent Spell, Weapon Finesse

Skills Acrobatics +11 (+7 when jumping), Bluff +11, Climb +1, Diplomacy +8, Intimidate +9, Knowledge (local) +9, Perception +1, Perform (comedy) +11, Sense Motive +4, Spellcraft +6, Stealth +14, Use Magic Device +7

Languages Common, Halfling

SQ bardic knowledge +2, versatile performance (comedy)

Combat Gear potion of cure moderate wounds, silent metmagic rod (lesser), tanglefoot bag; Other Gear masterwork chain shirt, masterwork short sword, sling with 20 bullets, 100 ft. silk rope (in 25 ft. lengths), 30 gp

Simeon Crulsticker (Pathfinder)

Simeon Crulsticker          CR 3

XP 800

Halfling fighter 4

CE Small humanoid (halfling)

Init +4; Perception +6

DEFENSE

AC 20, touch 15, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +4 Dex, +1 size)

hp 30 (4-D10+4)

Fort +6, Ref +6, Will +2; +3 vs. fear

Defensive Abilities bravery +1

OFFENSE

Speed 20 ft.

Melee mwk dagger +11 (1d3+3/19–20) or mwk dagger +9 (1d3+3/19–20) and mwk dagger +9 (1d3+2/19–20)

Ranged dagger +10 (1d3+3/19–20) or dagger +8 (1d3+3/19–20) and mwk dagger +8 (1d3+2/19–20)

STATISTICS

Str 12, Dex 18, Con 12, Int 13, Wis 10, Cha 10

Base Atk +4; CMB +4; CMD 18

Feats Deadly Aim, Two-Weapon Fighting, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (dagger), Weapon Specialization (dagger)

Skills Acrobatics +10 (+6 when jumping), Bluff +4, Climb +3, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +5, Stealth +21 (base 11)

Languages Common, Goblin, Halfling

SQ armor training 1

Combat Gear feather token (whip), elixir of hiding*; Other Gear+1 chain shirt, daggers (6), masterwork daggers (2), 24 gp

 

* expended - included in stat block.

Development If the gnome Hippertook is in town, the insurance man attempts to pin the assassination on him by using middlemen to hire the assassins. This information can be revealed with an appropriate Intimidate or Diplomacy check from the diminutive duo, but a DC 18 Sense Motive check indicates that the sequence of events doesn't quite add up. If the PC discover that the story does not check out and turns the pair into the town guard they receive a +4 circumstance bonus during their court appearance. If the party does not pursue an insurance claim, use this encounter some time after Hippertook arrives in town—in this instance the gnome does engage their services.

 

8-G Haggle Haggle Haggle (Buying Cargo)

Working with their recently hired caravan master, the PCs spend one speed point to assemble their cargo.

After engaging a caravan any remaining trade scrip and coin is invested in cargo. This investment is known as the Cargo Value and factors in determining the party’s success.

The adventurers can give specific suggestions (Player’s Handout #1 for reference) on what cargo to purchase based on the rumors they have collected along the way. Directing their caravan master to focus on the following cargoes earns the PCs one profit point for each item identified.

Profitable Items

copper ingots

exotic woods and timber

mithral

martial weapons

medium and heavy armor

simple furniture

healer’s kits

associated aventuring gear

flour

gnomish cheese

cured ham

Unprofitable Items

The following items are unprofitable—PCs earn a profit point for every item they direct their caravan master to avoid. 

 

leather

cold iron

simple weapons

light armor

wool cloth

cooper’s supplies

oatmeal

vintage wine

smoked meats

salt beef

Getting it Wrong: If the PCs interpret their information incorrectly and focus on unprofitable items or specifically avoid profitable ones, penalize them one trade point per error.

Space to record Cargo Units Loaded and Total Cargo Value are included on Player’s Handout #2.

Additional speed points may be spent to locate the best bargains. A DC 15 Appraise, Diplomacy, or Profession (merchant) check rewards the PCs with 1 trade point. Every 5 points exceeding the DC earns an additional trade point.

This skill checks may be attempted multiple times—each attempt costs one speed point.

Player Investments

PCs may use personal treasure to purchase cargo for the caravan. Any funds invested are returned at the conclusion of the adventure. The party adds this capital to total Cargo Value.

Development If the PCs ignored Encounter 7-A en route to Cherr's Landing, this is a good place to insert the ghoul combat—the undead rise up from the harbor as the PCs negotiate in the docks district.

 

 

Act Three - Return to Svest

The return trip provides an opportunity for the PCs to complete the encounters or side quests bypassed on the outward leg of the trip (see the adventure flowchart to set the order of these opportunities.) The two key events—the Shipwreck Salvage (7-A and 7-B) and the Homesteader (7-C and 7-D) occur roughly one week and two weeks out of Cherr's Landing respectively. The events are detailed below and reference the appropriate encounters from Act One.

Some encounters require the party to make a roll on the Random Caravan Events Table. When a skill check is required, one PC should make the check—the remaining adventurers may aid another. Taking 10 is not permitted on these checks.

 

Random Caravan Events Table

d100Event
01-05All Quiet—Subtract 10% from the next Random Caravan Events Roll.
06-20No Event
21-30Rich GrassDC 15 Survival check ignores next Grain Spoilage Event.
31-40ShortcutDC 15 Knowledge (geography) or Survival check earns 1 speed point.
41-50ThorpeDC 15 Profession (merchant) or Appraise check earns 1 trade point selling cargo to an isolated settlement.
51-60Stolen Cargo—4d6 cargo points stolen by deserters. A DC 20 Perception check halves the loss.
61-70Injured Animals—1d6 animals lamed. A DC 16 Handle Animal or Heal check halves the loss. Lamed animals may not continue—cargo capacity of the caravan is reduced for each lamed animal unless replacements exist. Ignore this event by expending one Masterwork Saddles Upgrade.
71-80Grain SpoilageDC 15 Knowledge (nature) or Survival check or lose one speed point foraging for fodder. Ignore this event by expending one Extra Feed upgrade.
81-90Scouts Slain—Scouts are slain by monsters. Add 5% to the next Random Caravan Events Roll. PCs must act as scouts from this point forward. The party must pay 250 gp to benefit the slain scouts’ families or future Stolen Cargo events incur a -2 circumstance penalty.
91-00Monster Attackd100
01-15
    1d4 dire bats
16-30     1d6 boars
31-40     1 owlbear
41-50     1 tiger
51-65     1d4 dire wolves
66-80      1 ettercap and 1d6 giant spiders
81-100    2d6 wolvesFor each round of combat in excess of 3, apply the effects of the Injured Animals event.

If the PCs are acting as scouts, failure on a DC 20 Perception check leaves them 2 rounds away from the battle at the start of combat.

Development: Exit Speed - PCs earn one speed point if their caravan is composed of heavy horses (two if they are using Ivan Rostovak's light horse caravan).

Development: Extra Cargo - PCs who visited Jansen's' Homestead (7-D) know that they can resupply their pack trains with grain and fodder at that waypoint, and use the available space to load more cargo in Cherr's Landing. Caravan #1 ships 60 extra cargo units, Caravans #2 and #3 ship 90 extra cargo units. Add this cargo to the Cargo Unit total on Player’s Handout #2.

 

9. Roadside Ambush (CR 6)

Hippertook the gnome prepares an ambush a few days beyond the outlying villages and farms of Cherr's Landing. He lies in wait on a small hill as the caravan approaches the plains road to the south.

Hippertook initiates combat by as far as 640 feet away from the caravan (the maximum range of his fireball). If the PCs left town before the gnome completed his preparations, this range is reduced by 100 feet for every task unfinished in his list of activities. Hippertook places 4 bandit henchmen half way between him and the PCs (or a minimum of 100 feet from the caravan). It is almost impossible to spot the ambush at the outset except at close range—the Spot/Perception DC is 17 plus 1 for every 10 feet of distance at the outset of the encounter. Once combat is initiated, the enemy attempts to snipe at their targets, reducing all DCs by -20. Even if the party cannot spot their foes initially, they can determine the direction the missile and spells are coming from. The grassy plains are clear of enough obstacles to permit mounted or dismounted PCs to run toward the attackers, closing the range quickly to get within sighting distance.

Hippertook's intent is to cause as much damage to the PCs' caravan as possible and then flee. He targets the caravan with fireballs, only switching to the party if they are within 100 feet of him and aware of his position. He uses the buffer of his bandit archers to slow down the adventurers while targeting the caravan with magic. The bandits snipe with arrows until their foes close then engage in melee, hurling thunderstones at spellcasters, and tanglefoot bags at foes wearing heavy armor.

Hippertook (3.5)

Hippertook

Size/Type: Small Humanoid (Gnome) Sorcerer 6

Hit Dice: 6d4+18 (33 hp)

Initiative: +2

Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares)
Armor Class: 14 (+1 armor, +2 Dex, +1 size), Touch 13, flat-footed 14

Base Attack/Grapple: +3/-2

Attack: Mwk Spear +4 melee (1d6+1/×3) or melee Touch +3 or Light Crossbow +6 ranged (1d6/19–20/x2)
Full Attack: Mwk Spear +4 melee (1d6+1/×3) or melee Touch +3 or Light Crossbow +6 ranged (1d6/19–20/x2)

Spells Per Day 6/7/6/4

Spells Known:

Level 0 (7/day) DC 13 - acid splash, daze, detect magic, mage hand, message, read magic, touch of fatigue

Level 1 (4/day) DC 14 enlarge person, obscuring mist, shield, shocking grasp

Level 2 (2/day) DC 15 - alter self, ghoul touch

Level 3 (1/day) DC 16 - fireball

Special Attacks: Spell-like Abilities, Spells

Special Qualities: Low-Light Vision, Gnome Traits

Saves: Fort +4, Ref +4, Will +6 (+2 vs illusions)
Abilities: Str 8, Dex 14, Con 15, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 16
Skills:, Bluff +4, Concentration +12, Jump -6, Listen +3, Hide +10, Tumble +5, Spot +4, Use Magic Device +4
Feats: Acrobatic, Combat Casting, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Toughness

Challenge Rating: 5
Alignment: Neutral Evil
Languages: Common, Gnome, Sylvan

Special Abilities

Spell-Like Abilities: 1/day—speak with animals (burrowing mammal only, duration 1 minute, 1/day—dancing lights, ghost sound, prestidigitation (Caster Level 1st; save DC 13)

Combat Gear, potion of spider climb, potion of invisibility (2), scrolls of cat's grace (2), scroll of slow, flask of acid, tanglefoot bag; Other Gear cloak of resistance +1, light crossbow with 10 bolts, masterwork spear, bracers of armor +1, caltrops, 28 gp

Hawk Familiar (3.5)

Hawk Familiar

Size/Type: Tiny Magical Beast

Hit Dice: 6 (16 hp)

Initiative: +0

Speed: 10 ft. (2 squares), fly 60 ft. (average)

Armor Class: 20 (+3 Dex, +5 natural, +2 size), touch 15, flat-footed 17

Base Attack/Grapple: +0/-10

Attack: Talons +8 melee (1d4-2) or Touch +8 melee

Full Attack: Talons +8 melee (1d4-2) or Touch +8 melee

Space/Reach: 2.5 ft./0 ft.

Special Attacks: Deliver Touch Attack, Improved Evasion

Special Qualities: Empathic Link, Low-light Vision, Share Spells, Speak with Master

Saves: Fort +2, Ref +5, Will +6

Abilities: Str 6, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 8, Wis 14, Cha 6

Skills: Hide +15, Listen +4, Tumble +6, Spot +16

Feats: Alertness, Weapon Finesse

(4) Bandits (3.5)

Bandit

Size/Type: Medium Humanoid (Human) Warrior 2

Hit Dice: 2d8+4 (13 hp)

Initiative: +1

Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
Armor Class: 13 (+2 armor, +1 Dex), Touch 11, flat-footed 12

Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+3

Attack: Longsword +3 melee (1d8+1/19–20) or Sap +3 melee (1d6+1 nonlethal), or Longbow +3 ranged (1d8/×3)
Full Attack: Longsword +3 (1d8+1/19–20) or Sap +3 (1d6+1 nonlethal)
Special Attacks:

Special Qualities:

Saves: Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +1
Abilities: Str 13, Dex 12, Con 11, Int 9, Wis 10, Cha 8
Skills: Hide +6, Intimidate +4
Feats: Armor Prof Heavy, Armor Prof Light, Armor Prof Medium, Martial Weap Prof, Shield Proficiency, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Skill Focus (hide), Tower Shield Proficiency, Toughness

Languages: Common

Challenge Rating: 1/2

Alignment: Chaotic Good

Combat Gear potion of cure light wounds, masterwork arrows (5), tanglefoot bags (2), thunderstone (2); Other Gear leather armor, longbow with 20 arrows, longsword, sap, 48 gp

Hippertook (Pathfinder)

Hippertook   CR 5

XP 1,600

Gnome sorcerer 6

CE Small humanoid (gnome)

Init +1; Senses low-light vision; Perception +3

DEFENSE

AC 13, touch 12, flat-footed 12 (+1 armor, +1 Dex, +1 size)

hp 39 (6d6+18)

Fort +5, Ref +2, Will +8; +2 vs. illusions

Defensive Abilities defensive training (+4 dodge bonus to AC vs. giants)

OFFENSE

Speed 20 ft.

Melee mwk spear +6 (1d6+1, Crit ×3), melee touch +5

Ranged light crossbow +5 (1d6, Crit 19–20/x2)

Special Attacks +1 on attack rolls against goblinoid and reptilian humanoids, long limbs (+5 ft.)

Spell-Like Abilities (CL 6th; concentration +10)

7/day—acidic ray (1d6+2 acid), 1/day—dancing lights, ghost sound (DC 15), prestidigitation, speak with animals

Sorcerer Spells Known (CL 6th; concentration +10)

3rd (4/day) —fireball (DC 17)

2nd (5/day)—alter self, ghoul touch (DC 16)

1st (7/day)—enlarge person (DC 15), obscuring mist, shield, shocking grasp

0 (at will)—acid splash, bleed (DC 14), detect magic, mage hand, message, read magic, touch of fatigue (DC 14)

Bloodline aberrant

STATISTICS

Str 12, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 8, Wis 10, Cha 18

Base Atk +3; CMB +3; CMD 14

Feats Eschew Materials, Iron Will, Toughness

Skills Acrobatics +16 (+12 when jumping)* (base +6), Bluff +8, Perception +3, Stealth +6, Use Magic Device +9

Languages Common, Gnome, Sylvan

SQ bloodline arcana (+50% duration on polymorph spells), gnome magic

Combat Gear elixir of tumbling (2) (1 expended—included in stat block), potion of spider climb, potion of invisibility, scrolls of cat's grace (2), scroll of slow, flask of acid, tanglefoot bag; Other Gear cloak of resistance +1, light crossbow with 10 bolts, masterwork spear, bracers of armor +1, caltrops, 28 gp

(4) Bandits (Pathfinder)

Bandit          CR 1/2

XP 200

Human warrior 2

NE Medium humanoid (human)

Init +1; Senses Perception +0

DEFENSE

AC 13, touch 11, flat-footed 12 (+2 armor, +1 Dex)

hp 15 (2d10+4)

Fort +4, Ref +1, Will +0

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.

Melee longsword +3 (1d8+1, Crit 19–20/X2) or sap +3 (1d6+1 nonlethal)

Ranged longbow +3 (1d8, Crit ×3)

STATISTICS

Str 13, Dex 13, Con 12, Int 9, Wis 10, Cha 8

Base Atk +2; CMB +3; CMD 14

Feats Point-Blank Shot, Skill Focus (Stealth)

Skills Intimidate +4, Stealth +6

Languages Common

Combat Gear potion of cure light wounds, masterwork arrows (5), tanglefoot bags (2), thunderstone (2); Other Gear leather armor, longbow with 20 arrows, longsword, sap, 48 gp

Developments

Hippertook's fireballs deal 15 damage per hit to the beasts of the caravan, but this damage is not applied individually (and saves have already been factored into this damage). At the conclusion of the combat for every 10 full points of damage from the sorcerer's spellfire, 1d6 animals are lamed or too wounded to continue. A separate DC 20 Handle Animal or Heal check halves the result of each 1d6 die roll. Animals that are still wounded after these checks may be made fit for travel with 10 points of magical healing each. Otherwise, lamed animals may not continue—the cargo capacity of the caravan is reduced for each lamed animal unless replacements exist. Any cargo the animals were carrying is assumed lost.

Roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table. The event takes place on the same day, as the sun begins to set.

 

10. Return to the Shipwreck

One week after leaving Cherr's Landing, the PCs pass the beach where the Swiftsure ran aground. If the party did not trigger this encounter on the outbound journey, run Encounter 7-A (and 7-B if they investigate the ship). Their pack train has consumed enough fodder that they may easily carry the 60 units of salvage that awaits them at the wreck. After completing the encounters, roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table and advance the party to Encounter 11. If they do not follow the trail to the ship, award one speed point.

If the PCs already completed these encounters they retrieve stored salvage from the beach cave. If they ignored the sailor (or declined to examine the wreck on the outbound trip) the ship is destroyed and the cargo lost. Roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table and advance the PCs to Encounter 11.

 

11. Return to the Homestead

If the PCs took the coastal road on the outbound journey, run encounter 7-C and 7-D now. If they turn down Jansen's offer to visit his farm after defeating the boar, award them one speed point and advance them to Encounter 12.

If the party did not accept Jansen's invitation on the outbound journey, they may still detour to the farm now at a cost of one speed point.

If the adventurers visited the farm previously, they have already been penalized for speed and find it easily on the return trip to take care of any planned business.

After topping off their fodder, the PCs may load additional foodstuffs as cargo from the well supplied dale. Jansen's Homestead can supply 30 unit of cargo. By spending one speed point, the PC may collect an additional 30 units of cargo from Jansen's neighbors. This cargo fits on space previously occupied by fodder and grain that has been freed up now that the caravan is more than halfway to Svest. No additional funds are required to obtain this cargo - most of the goods here are foodstuffs that are relatively inexpensive, and the homestead has enough need for finished goods from the caravan's supplies that the profit on those items covers the additional cargo purchases.

If the party mentions purchasing Jansen hams, award them one trade point. PCs may buy potions from Jansen's wife as detailed in 7-D.

Once loaded, the adventurers leave the farm. Roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table and advance the party to Encounter 12.

 

12. Return to the Vale

By the time the PCs reach the tunnel leading to the Vale, their train will have consumed enough fodder that they may load up to 30 cargo units of salt. Add any mined salt to the total cargo load and award the party one trade point.

Details on mining salt are presented in the Treasure section of Encounter 6: The Salt Mine. Roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table as the convoy approaches the tunnel in the mountainside.

If the PCs have not explored the tunnel, their caravan master asks them about it and strongly encourages them to do so—relating the tale of the lost battalion and eager for possible magic left behind. If they do so, subtract one speed point and advance to Scene 6; the caravan remains on the far side of the tunnel until their return. They may then troop the whole assembly into the Vale to mine salt as above.

Once the PCs have completed all activity in the Vale advance them to Encounter 14: A Wizard's Legacy.

If the party ignores the Vale a second time roll once on the Caravan Random Events Table and advance them to Encounter 13: The Washed Out Trail.

 

13. The Washed Out Trail

Taking the low pass over the Knee, the caravan encounters a washed out chunk of trail from a late spring avalanche. An entire section of the roadbed has broken away from the mountainside—there is no way to get the pack train to the far side. The caravan master spots a difficult but possible route along the coast, however the caravan must backtrack to within easy reach of the Vale at a cost of one speed point. If the adventurers again decline to explore the hidden valley, they make their way along the coast at a cost of 4 speed points and two rolls on the Caravan Random Events Table. Advance to Encounter 15: No Monster Left Out.

PCs who negotiated the high pass on the outbound leg know that the rope bridge awaits them and there is no way to get such a large group of animals across except for magic. If the group took the low pass on the outbound leg and attempts the high pass here, instead of a washed out trail they encounter the rope bridge and must turn back as above.

 

14. A Wizard's Legacy

The washed out trail or the rope bridge are easily spanned by using the two stone spans discovered in the magical cache of the lost battalion.

The PCs also have a chance to earn one or two speed points and treasures by utilizing the tunnel bores from the wizard's tool kit. The caravan master curses the winding paths and points out a likely spot for a tunnel through the mountain to create a shortcut. A DC 10 Knowledge (geography) check is sufficient to locate the tunnel, and the use of 8 of the tunnel bores chews through the dirt and rock earns the PCs one speed point.

Alternately the PCs may attempt to site the tunnel perfectly—this requires a DC 22 Knowledge (geography) check. Failure by 5 or more on this check requires using all 10 tunnel bores to complete the excavation and yields only one speed point. Failure by less than 5 consumes all 10 bores but yields 2 speed points. Success consumes 8 bores and grants 2 speed points, and success by 5 or more results in a pile of gold ore worth 1,600 gp being left behind in the excavation process.

If the PCs do not carve a tunnel through the mountain, they have a chance to sell the tunnel bores at a vastly reduced price at the conclusion of the adventure.

Development: Roll once on the Caravan Random Events table and advance the party to Encounter 15: No Monster Left Out

 

15. No Monster Left Out

The PCs, scouting ahead of the caravan for the final leg of the mountains, encounter either bugbear raiders (5-C) or the cyclops (5-A): whichever encounter they did not face on the outbound leg of the journey.

After the combat, if the PCs have already encountered Kipya Mulberry (4-E) advance the party to Encounter 16: The Ferryman's Revenge. If they have not yet come upon the blood trail leading to Encounter 4-E, run the encounter as written with the option for them to bypass it and earn a speed point. If they have already bypassed the blood trail, run just the combat portion of Encounter 4-E (the PCs hear the taunts as they head back to the main caravan). In this case, if they skip following Kipya to her grove (and lose out on the reward) they gain a speed point. Advance to Encounter 16.

 

16. The Ferryman's Revenge

If the PC lost the race to the ferry (and their rivals sliced the rope to delay them) the ferryman seeks his revenge on their rivals. After repairing the rope, he constructed a second ferry; he and his son work through the night getting the PCs’ caravan across the river in record time, earning them a speed point.

If the party sabotaged the ferry themselves or intimidated or committed violence in front of the ferry owner, he takes his revenge on the PCs. The boatman waits until the first load of animals is en-route to the far side. He then signals his son to cut the hauling rope and dives in the river as the ferry drifts downstream. 3d6 cargo points are ruined in the "accident" (a DC 20 Search/Perception check halves the loss).

Additionally, the PCs must now find another way to cross the river. Repairing the ferry costs the party 3 speed points, or they may search for a ford (Encounter 4-D The Ford Crossing). The PCs need not swim the entire caravan across, they must simply prove it is safe to cross by making the crossing without incident themselves (with their mounts).

If the party crosses the river to talk to the ferryman they may attempt to Intimidate him for the location of the ford. A DC 14 Intimidate check reveals its location—failure on this check by 5 or more results in the ferryman sending the PCs to a false crossing.

Once across the river the rest of the journey into Svest is uneventful.

 

Conclusion

If the PCs arrive in Svest with a positive speed point count, they beat the caravan assembled by the competition. On a negative count they lose the race, although the needs of the town still provide ready markets for their goods.

The party rendezvous with their patron and calculate the profits from the venture. Follow the steps below to make these calculations.

Locate the Column containing the Value of the PCs’ Cargo. For every 4 trade points (round down) earned, shift one column to the right.

Locate the Row containing the number of Cargo Units delivered by the party. For every two speed points earned shift one row down. For every two negative speed points, shift one row up.

Cross reference the selected column and row to find the final profit in gold pieces. The adventurers earn 50% of this total as an additional reward from Mishka Edeerneld, or 40% from Graehme Kolder (or nothing if they failed to detect the hidden clause in the latter’s contract.)

 

Final Profit in Gold Pieces

Cargo Value (gp)
Cargo Units Delivered< 5,0005001 -8,5008,501 - 12,00012,001 - 15,50015,501 -19,00019,000 - 22,50026,000 - 29,500> 29,500
<1002,0002,4003,0003,7004,4005,1006,0006,000
101-1502,5002,7003,4004,2005,5006,5006,5006,500
151-2003,0003,3004,1004,6006,1007,2007,5007,500
201-2503,5003,9004,7005,2006,7007,9008,2008,500
250-3004,0004,5005,3006,0007,4008,8009,1009,500
301-3504,5005,1005,9007,0008,2009,40010,00010,500
>3505,0006,0007,0008,0009,00010,00011,00012,000

 

After the profit is calculated and shared out a few minor items of business remain.

If the PCs broke into the Money Changer’s and took more funds then they had bank drafts for, Reynauld and the 4 town watchmen arrest them once the profit is calculated. If the PCs resist use Jellik's statistics (encounter 5-D) for Reynauld, and the Bandits (Encounter 9) for the guardsmen. If the party kills any of the guards, they will become outlaws in the region. If they go along quietly, criminal charges are waived because of their service to the town but they must repay any extra funds taken (even if they invested it in the caravan cargo) plus a fine of 750 gp. If they took just the coin they had bank drafts for they must pay only the 750 gp fine (which pays to have the trap reset on the money changer's vault).

Evidence of wrongdoing by the hirelings of the PCs' competition may result in Mishka Edeernald compensating the party as per the Sidebar: Rivals in Encounter 2. Ghraeme Kolder disavows any action taken by his employees—his influence in town is sufficient enough to survive the accusations, but the resulting scandal causes the selfish merchant to mark the adventurers as enemies worthy of vengeance at a later date.

The PCs may be in possession of 2 or more tunnel bores. Up to two may be sold at 50% Market Price. Fix the price of any remaining tunnel bores to bring the party’s wealth by level in line (It is likely the adventurers will level at the conclusion of the adventure). The total treasure awarded in the scenario varies depending on the success of the expedition. If the PCs come up short, the sale of the tunnel bores may make up the difference. If the party ends up over their wealth by level, any remaining tunnel bores are damaged and worthless.

 

Future Adventures

A reckoning with Ghraeme Kolder may be required (especially it the PCs scandalized him with accusations of wrongdoing) or if the merchant cheated the party of their reward. PCs might agree to provide some service to the town to work off the 750 gp fine for breaking into the money changer’s.

The discovery of the salt mine in the hidden Vale in the crook of The Knee and the improvements to the routes over the mountains spur regular overland travel into Svest. The party may find adventure on the new routes, or even begin to carve a homestead out of the wilderness for themselves. The recently discovered elven ruins also promise adventure, and the island across the Stillborn Straights will not hold its secrets forever.

 

Experience Awards

Award the PCs experience based on the creatures and traps encountered.

The following additional experience awards are available.

100 xp        Encounter 3 : Each preparation activity attempted

1,200 xp     Encounter 4-B: PC s Win Chase to Ferry

1,200 xp     Encounter 4-D: Crossing the Ford

1,200 xp     Encounter 5-B: Transporting 4 or more horses or mules across the rope bridge

500 xp        Encounter 7-A: Salvage at least 30 Cargo Units

500 xp        Encounter 7-C: Purchase hams or magic from Jansen's Homestead

300 xp*      Encounter 8-F: PCs force payment of insurance claims

100 xp        Encounter 8-G: Per Profit Point Earned

*300 xp per 5,000 gp in Trade Scrip collected plus 300 xp if the PCs earn profit points.

 

New Magic Items

Heavyload Saddle

Price 2,000 gp; Aura faint transmutation; CL 1st; Weight 3 lbs.

This finely crafted saddle comes with a cloth bearing the insignia of an elite military unit. An animal saddled with a heavyload saddle is affected as though subject to a permanent ant haul spell.

Construction

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, ant haul; Cost 1,000 gp

Tunnel Bore
Aura moderate transmutation; CL 9th
Slot none; Price 4,200 gp; Weight 10 lb
Description

This torpedo-shaped iron device bores through earth and rock (but not worked stone), creating a tunnel 10 feet wide by up to 180 feet long. The magic in the device crafts stone supports as needed to shore up the tunnel. Once used, the device splits in half and becomes useless.

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, stoneshape, transmute mud to rock, transmute rock to mud,; Cost 2,100 gp

Stone Span
Aura moderate conjuration; CL 12th
Slot none; Price 3,000 gp; Weight 10 lb
Description

This miniature bridge is carved from granite. When activated, the bridge transforms into a 12-foot thick span 10 feet wide and up to 30 feet in length. The span melds into existing rock or creates it own abutment on either end in loose or packed dirt. It is fully arched and buttressed with a low stone rail on either side. Up to two stone spans may be chained together. To build a larger bridge, one stone span for every additional 60 feet of length must be used to strengthen the arch and buttress, or drop a support shaft to the terrain below. Once placed, the bridge is permanent.

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, transmute mud to rock, wall of stone; Cost 1,500 gp

Quilted Silks
Aura faint transmutation; CL 3rd
Slot body; Price 1,000 gp; Weight 10 lb
Description

This silk garment can be worn as outerwear or under armor and has internal layers specifically designed to trap arrows, bolts, darts, shuriken, thrown daggers, and other small ranged piercing weapons. When these kinds of weapons strike you, they tend to become snagged in these layers and fail to harm you. Wearing quilted silks gives you DR 3/— against attacks of this kind. The special layers of the silk have no effect on other kinds of weapons.

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, creator must have 5 ranks in craft (clothing); Cost 500 gp

 

 

 

Credits

Author - Michael Allen

Creative Director - Michael Allen

Art Director - Michael Allen & Jonathan G. Nelson

Cover Artist - Darran Caldemeyer

Interior Artists - Bruno Balixa, Jacob Blackmon, Public Domain Artwork

Cartographers - Todd Gamble & Michael Allen

Editor - Mike Myler

Playtesters - Chris Pearce, Dixie Landoe, Jesse Riggs, Nick Toptine, Bobby Nichols

Publisher - Jonathan G. Nelson

 

 

Twin Crossings OGL Section 15 Citations

System Reference Document. Copyright 2000, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.; Authors Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams, based on material by E. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Player's Guide. © 2010, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Jason Bulmahn

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document. © 2011, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Paizo Publishing, LLC.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook. © 2009, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Jason Bulmahn, based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary. © 2009, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Jason Bulmahn, based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 2. © 2010, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Authors Wolfgang Baur, Jason Bulmahn, Adam Daigle, Graeme Davis, Crystal Frasier, Joshua J. Frost, Tim Hitchcock, Brandon Hodge, James Jacobs, Steve Kenson, Hal MacLean, Martin Mason, Rob McCreary, Erik Mona, Jason Nelson, Patrick Renie, Sean K Reynolds, F. Wesley Schneider, Owen K.C. Stephens, James L. Sutter, Russ Taylor, and Greg A. Vaughan, based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 3. © 2011, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Authors: Jesse Benner, Jason Bulmahn, Adam Daigle, James Jacobs, Michael Kenway, Rob McCreary, Patrick Renie, Chris Sims, F. Wesley Schneider, James L. Sutter, and Russ Taylor, based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game GameMastery Guide. © 2010, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Cam Banks, Wolfgang Buar, Jason Bulmahn, Jim Butler, Eric Cagle, Graeme Davis, Adam Daigle, Joshua J. Frost, James Jacobs, Kenneth Hite, Steven Kenson, Robin Laws, Tito Leati, Rob McCreary, Hal Maclean, Colin McComb, Jason Nelson, David Noonan, Richard Pett, Rich Redman, Sean K reynolds, F. Wesley Schneider, Amber Scorr, Doug Seacat, Mike Selinker, Lisa Stevens, James L. Sutter, Russ Taylor, Penny Williams, Skip Williams, Teeuwynn Woodruff.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game NPC Codex. © 2012, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Authors: Jesse Benner, Jason Bulmahn, Adam Daigle, Alex Greenshields, Rob McCreary, Mark Moreland, Jason Nelson, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Patrick Renie, Sean K Reynolds, and Russ Taylor.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Equipment. © 2012 Paizo Publishing, LLC; Authors: Dennis Baker, Jesse Benner, Benjamin Bruck, Ross Byers, Brian J. Cortijo, Ryan Costello, Mike Ferguson, Matt Goetz, Jim Groves, Tracy Hurley, Matt James, Jonathan H. Keith, Michael Kenway, Hal MacLean, Jason Nelson, Tork Shaw, Owen KC Stephens, and Russ Taylor.

 

 

Twin Crossings

A mercantile endeavor for four to five 4th level PCs.

Embroiled in a struggle between two rival merchant houses, the party races to assemble and escort a valuable load of cargo to a commerce-starved city.

The loss of the yearly supply ship to a late winter storm places an isolated town in peril. A lone survivor, clinging to a hatch cover and blown hundreds of miles by the tempest, brings the disastrous news. Two premier merchant houses make plans to attempt the overland route. The race is on to get word to the far side of the mountains and assemble a relief caravan to cross back over. The loss of the ship means that any goods that do make it over the hump will yield great profit. The survival of not only of the merchant houses but of the very town itself is dependent on those willing to brave the journey. Monsters, difficult trails, and unscrupulous behavior by the competition stand in the way of success—and profit.

Also included in this adventure:

  • A flexible encounter sequence that allows the PCs to chart their own course over the mountains.
  • Rich roleplaying opportunities and skill challenges that impact the party’s final success.
  • Three new magic items including magical engineering equipment from a hidden cache.
  • A new monster—the Salt Worm—that leaves naught but the desiccated husks of its victims behind.
  • Notes on scaling the encounters for parties of six or more.