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Wandering Wasteland: Ravine, City of the Sands

Ravine
Built into the crust of Aventyr in the central portion of the Scorched Lands is the city of Ravine, the largest settlement of the region. Hovels and dwellings crowd the sides of the busy canyon walls, while the surface level is left almost completely barren save for the sheltered guard posts and canyon lifts.. At the lowest level a stream of fresh, cool water runs throughout the canyon floor, created from a natural aquifer deep underground that runs south and west into the fissures. Pilgrims of all sorts have lived and survived here for centuries, each generation building dwellings closer and closer to the surface as space becomes more limited. The most prized and ancient of dwellings near the canyon floor are sought after and conspired for, often in the nearby market level’s giant lifts (spaced sporadically throughout to ferry goods to and from the surface on giant rock-counterweight scales). RavineSilver plated reflectors set up along the sides of some of the canyon walls reflect sunlight into special cutout terraces that, with irrigation from the stream, provide food for the citizens.

Ravine is run by an elected mayor that serves a five year term and all positions of power within the city are elected officials or appointed by the mayor.

RAVINE
N metropolis
Corruption +4; Crime +1; Economy +7; Law +5; Lore +6; Society +6
Qualities notorious, prosperous, rumormongering citizens, strategic location, superstitious, tourist attraction
Danger +20

DEMOGRAPHICS
Government autocracy
Population 75,000 (48,000 humans, 7,000 half-orcs, 6,000 half-elves, 14,000 other)
Notable NPCs
     Mayor Wells Sunprince (N Male half-elf rogue 13)
     Kara the Sun Flea (NG Female human investigator 5/bard 4) [this week’s Statblock Sunday! MM]
     Master Pilgrim Sandra Waster (LN Female half-orc ranger 8)

MARKETPLACE
Base Value 35,692 gp; Purchase Limit 225,000 gp; Spellcasting 8th
Minor Items *; Medium Items 4d4; Major Items 3d4

[Ravine by Scorched Lands writer Lance Keppner!]

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Mohbka Mania: Prattling PRANKSTER

[This sidequest uses the special size rules from Meta Thursday: Little Characters, Big Adventures! —MM]

Prattling PRANKSTERS

After the PCs arrive in Mohkba (inside the Red Palace’s hunting dog den), a DC 16 Knowledge (geography) check confirms they are in the Carpenter’s District. Though they are unfortunately still vastly reduced in size from the partially suppressed teleport that brought them into the city, the magics of the Sanctioned Arcane Practitioners did do the adventurers a boon—this is very near the location of the last P.R.A.N.K.S.T.E.R.S. shipment from the Scorched Lands.

When the royal canines have been dealt with it seems like the party is no longer in danger, but 1d4 minutes after the encounter ends a storm of hail begins raining down on the city—at their reduced size, the weather may be a deadly hazard for the PCs! Taking cover in the nearest building brings the PCs to a large common hall for palace workers, a 40 ft. by 60 ft. hall with a large table surrounded by tree-stump stools and supplies lining the far wall.

A cursory search of the barrels and crates with a DC 14 Perception check reveals that one of the containers is a contraband cypher, a sure sign that the P.R.A.N.K.S.T.E.R.S. are nearby! Any PC that exceeds a check result of 25 also finds a piercing needle stuck in the crease between the floorboards and the wall. Though the adventurers might want to immediately track down the nearest criminal agent, a DC 12 Intelligence check deduces a few reasons not to; with their reduced mobility the adventurers won’t be able to search very quickly or effectively and moreover, at their reduced stature, the chances of being overwhelmed by the ne’er-do-wells are much greater than normal.

1d4 hours after finding this room, a servant appears with bowls, cups, and spoons in hand, setting the huge table for a meal attended by eight palace workers. A DC 20 Sense Motive check notices that one of the individuals—a woman named Vesra, a menial laborer in the Red Palace—is acting slightly out of sorts. If the PCs fail this check there’s a 50% chance she accidentally drops a PRANKSTERS coin onto the floor for a few seconds; while it is unlikely any regular-sized folks see its face, the party instantly recognizes the criminal token for what it is.

Today happens to be Vesra’s turn to clean up after the meal and after the rest of the workers file out of the room, she makes several trips with used dishes before approaching the contraband cypher. The party has ample time to try and block the doorways out of the chamber and with no means of escape, a criminal they can interrogate to learn more of the cabal’s plans in Mohkba—provided they can subdue the prattling PRANKSTER! [Tomorrow’s Statblock Sunday, folks! —MM]

 

5E Rules

A DC 13 Intelligence (Geography) check confirms the party’s location in Mohkba.
A DC 11 Wisdom (Perception) check notes the presence of a contraband cypher.
A DC 9 Intelligence check deduces that waiting for a moment to strike may be a better tactic.
A DC 16 Wisdom (Insight) check notices Vesra’s out-of-place demeanor.