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Death’s Enabler

Death’s Enabler     CR 6demon-clip-art-5
XP 
2,400
NE haunt (20 ft. by 10 ft. cliff’s peak)
Caster Level 7th
Notice Perception DC 23 (to hear the wails of tortured souls)
hp 12; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 hour
Effect When this haunt is triggered anyone within its area is compelled to hurl themselves off the cliff if they fail a DC 16 Will save, screeched at by a horde of phantasmal demons that sling the vilest of insults until they are obeyed. On a successful save the compulsion to leap off the cliff (80 feet down onto the water, taking 8d6 points of damage) is resisted, but the wicked brayings of the demons deal 3d6 points of damage. This is a mind-affecting fear effect.

Destruction No less than four true holy tomes must be thrown into a bonfire in the area of the haunt (unless these books are devoted to a god of evil or necromancy, this act begets no ill will for the owners.)

Adventure Hook The mad priest Cavraszen traveled across the land, spreading his insanity wherever he went. Droves of suicides followed his passing; for an entire decade he terrorized the coastline, appearing in different guises to succor the foolish to early, self-inflicted deaths. Eventually Cavraszen’s foul deeds came back to haunt him, and the children of a town he nearly destroyed banded together to ensure his demise. They flung his body from the peak after battering him senseless, killing the insane preacher on impact.

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Infernal Choir

infernal choirInfernal Choir     CR 9
XP 6,400
CE persistent haunt (50 ft. radius)
Caster Level 9th
Notice Perception DC 29 (to notice a barely audible unholy keen)
Hp 40; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day

Effect When the haunt manifests, a wizard in tattered robes springs from the ground. He waves a baton as if directing a symphony; he points to to the ground a group of demons appear. These demons sing to music that appears from out of nowhere. The melody and the deep baritones of the demons are not for human ears and the high-pitched shrieking of quasits do not make it anymore delightful (quite the opposite). The deep bass voice of the glabrezu lead singer (that wears a sparkling purple tuxedo) is the only thing barely tolerable. Everyone in the haunt’s area takes 2d8 sonic damage from the cacophony of off-key notes and the generally horrifying nature of demonic singing. Furthermore each round the haunt is active everyone in its area takes 3d6 bleed damage as their ears, nose, and eyes start to bleed from the unnatural assault on the senses. Fortitude DC 19 negates the bleed damage (deaf creatures are immune to the bleed damage). The haunt can manifest at different places across the land independently of Perry’s grave’s location. The only clue the haunt leaves behind is a glimmering business card with the text:

Perry Gwibbles
Singer Extraordinaire
Independent Agent for hire

The card disappears at first sunlight after a performance.

 

Destruction Summoning a celestial choir to perform the ballad of the Nearsighted Gnome on Perry Gwibbles’ grave destroys the haunt; hopefully celestials don’t find it beneath themselves to perform the lewd and rude drinking song. The Nearsighted Gnome was, according to Perry Gwibbles, the lowest form of entertainment that ever existed across the planes.

 

Adventure Hook Perry Gwibbles was a promising young wizard studying enchantments at the esteemed Academy of Magical Studies in Owlsburg. A member of the academy’s renowned choir, it was said he would become the choir’s next lead singer. One day Perry was working in an academy laboratory on a potion that would enhance one’s vocal abilities. As he added the final ingredient, it reacted explosively to the other components of the concoction. The explosion threw Perry across the room and as the smoke cleared he opened his mouth to scream for help, but only a feeble croak emerged from his lips.

A professor helped Perry over to the infirmary and all the way the afflicting mage was croaking like a frog. After days of tests Perry was given the bad news—his condition was not reversible. He would have screamed but instead he croaked much to the amusement of the people assembled around him. Perry abandoned his enchantment studies and instead started to study conjuration, but only three months after his accident, he was killed in a summoning accident (a hezrou misinterpreted his croaking greeting as an insult and ate him in front of his stunned fellows.) Perry’s remains were buried outside the city on a hill overlooking his beloved academy, but the mage’s will to succeed at singing was strong, and he is bound to his grave, doomed to perform with a passionate albeit untalented choir.

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Pool of Narcissism

Pool of Narcissism     CR 7
XP 3,200
CE haunt ( 20 ft. radius)
Caster Level 7th
Notice Perception DC 25 (to hear the faint smug laughter of a man)
HP 14Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect A pleasantly looking pool beckons the thirsty traveler with its cool, clear water. When a person approaches the pool they must specifically state that they do not look at their own reflection; if not, they are still allowed a Will save to avoid the effects (see below). Looking at one’s own reflection reveals a fantastically good-looking version staring back—a DC 19 Will save negates the effects of a smug narcissismspell, but otherwise it has a duration of 1 hour. The haunt itself has a special duration and tries to affect anyone approaching the pool and seeing their reflection within five minutes of the first person to do so. Making or failing the save renders the person immune to the haunt for 48 hours.

Škocjan_Caves_lake

Destruction The bones of Gaston Grassion must be retrieved from the bottom of the pool and buried in consecrated ground in a temple dedicated to the goddess of beauty.

Adventure Hook Gaston Grassion was a vain manan artist, a seducer, and caring for no one but himselfand considered himself above kings and priests, quickly making a fair share of enemies. On one fateful day as Gaston was fleeing yet another city after seducing the ruling duke’s daughter, he stopped to fill his waterskin in the pool. Upon seeing his reflection in the pool he stopped to admire this visage of perfection, and his enemies caught up with him. The duke himself snuck up behind Gaston while he gazed at the pool’s surface, grabbing him in a stranglehold and pushing the dilettante beneath the surface to drown. Gaston has haunted the pool ever since. 

SMUG NARCISSISM
School enchantment (compulsion) [emotion, mind-affecting]; Level bard 3, sorcerer/wizard 5, witch 5
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, M (a tiny shard of a mirror)
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Target one creature
Duration instantaneous
Duration 10 minute/level (D)
Saving Throw Will negates; Spell Resistance yes
You cause your target to become overwhelmed by its own importance, talents, and attractiveness. The target cannot help but look at itself in every reflective surface at every possible opportunity. In social situations, the target always tries to comment about how attractive it is or how ugly someone else is by comparison. The target remains constantly distracted, always looking for a reflective surface to gaze upon (such as a mirror, pool of water, a polished shield, and so on). The distraction gives the target a –2 penalty on all skill checks. In combat, the target worries about enemies damaging its appearance, and focuses on defense rather than offense (casting defensive spells rather than offensive spells, using the fight defensively or total defense action, and so on).

 

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Mime of the Troll Glade

troll mimeMime of the Troll Glade
XP 4,800
CE persistent haunt (50 ft. radius)
Caster Level 8th
Notice Perception DC 27 (to smell the faint lingering smell of vomit)
HP 42; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect A ghostly troll appears as the haunt manifests. He is dressed completely in white and his face is stark white from powder, only a single black tear upon his left chin, breaks the pale monotony of his appearance. He starts to communicate with the party by miming something unclear, and ends the miming with holding his hands to his ears—then he opens his mouth and unleashes a cone of ethereal vomit. The breath weapon is a 30-foot cone (Reflex DC 19 negates) and gives the victims the nauseated condition (a Will DC 19 lowers the condition to sickened). Any conditions obtained from the haunt lasts for 1d6+2 rounds as the ethereal vomit slowly dissipates. The mime makes three such attacks over three rounds and he moves up to 20 feet each round to get a better “barfing” position.

Destruction Consecrate must be cast in the glade by a good aligned spellcaster while a bard sings the Ballad of the Trollish Mime. All participants in the ritual must wear makeup similar to the trollish mime’s.

Adventure Hook Grobblebarf was an usual troll—instead of tearing peoples arms off, he asked them to perform a piece of music or dance for him. The unfortunate ones whom could not do so were eaten, but the fortunate ones were only eaten after their performance. A lucky few were even allowed to leave, usually because Grobblebarf had eaten their companions first. The troll grew especially fond of miming (which he considered the finest artform) and spent many nights performing for his fellow trolls. Eventually this was not enough for Grobblbarf and he wanted to perform in a town instead of in the woodlands where he had his lair.

The troll acquired a hat of disguise from a traveler who tried to avoid his fate by parting with treasure (to no avail). Grobblebarf donned the hat and set off for the nearby town of Grostburg in the guise of a half-orc. While he performed, a gust of wind blew off his hat—the villagers were horrified that a troll stood in the town square. Grobblebarf was chased out of town by torch wielding mobs and an allocation of adventurers that were passing through Grostburg.

Grobblebarf was cornered in a glade where he fought for his life and his right to perform his art, but the combined might of the mobs and the experienced adventurers was too much for a lone troll and he was killed in the glade, his body burned. A year later to the day, Grobblebarf’s spirit rose from the ground and manifested for the first time when a traveling troupe of actors made their camp there—soon the word spread of the haunted glade to Grostburg and beyond.

 

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Sanguine Avarice

Cultus Sangineus full set

Sanguine Avarice     CR 9
XP 6,400
NE persistent haunt (one creature)
CasterLevel 11th
Notice Perception DC 35 (to notice the pulsing gemstones of the items are synchronized)
hp 40; Weakness tricked by hide from undead; Trigger special (see text); Reset special (see text)
Effect This haunt is triggered when a creature dons two of the three following items: amulet of the sundered heart, cloak of the dark servant or mask of the thirst. Once the second item is donned, the creature is overcome by two overwhelming desires. The first is to never willingly remove either item, even upon pain of death (no save). The second is to do everything within their power to recover the last item, betraying, cajoling, deceiving and killing any and every person and thing that prevents them from doing so unless they succeed a DC 18 Will save once a week (at midnight on the day of rest, or its nearest equivalent). These desires continue for as long as the creature continues to wear two of the enchanted items, though they receive a save to resist the urge to seek out the third item once a week. In addition to these effects, while under the effects of the haunt the afflicted creature takes damage from positive energy and heals from negative energy.

Destruction Destroy both of the magic items (amulet of the sundered heart, cloak of the dark servant or mask of the thirst), which may only be removed once the wearer is unconscious.

Adventure Hook There are numerous examples (here on the AaWBlog under the tag “Cultus Sanguineas”!) included with each magic item (as well as several haunts, sidequest saturday and statblock sundays accompanying them)! Expect more about the history of these fell pieces on Friday!

Special Possession and wearing two parts of this set grants the abilities of both pieces and the use of comprehend languages as a spell-like ability three times per day and cause fear as a spell-like ability once per day.

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Rain of Blood

blood rain maybeRain of Blood     CR 9
XP 6,400

NE haunt (manifestation) (100 ft. radius)
Caster Level 10th
Notice Perception DC 30 (to notice the rolling rain clouds have a blood red hue)
Hp 18; Trigger special (see text); Reset 1 day
Effect     The thunder heralds rain but when the first drops fall, it becomes apparent that the skies are in fact shedding acidic blood. When this haunt manifests the dangerous precipitation lasts for three rounds damaging all organic matter (creatures and plants, but not objects), after which the rain returns to a normal, non-lethal downpour. On the first round the rain deals 6d6 acid damage, on the second round the deluge increases and deals 8d6 acid damage, and on the third round 10d6 acid damage finishes the manifestation (DC 22 Reflex saves to halve damage each round). Full cover entirely negates the damage and a creature wearing the amulet of the sundered heart, cloak of the dark servant or mask of the thirst is immune to the haunt.

Destruction      A manifestation is indestructible permanently unless the entity behind it is slain or banished back to whatever realm they came from. To read more about the Exsanguinator and how to bring an end to his malevolence, keep reading the AaWBlog as more of Cultus Sanguineus is revealed!

Adventure Hook     This manifestation represents the Exsanguinator’s desires to see the world covered in blood. His rage over imprisonment makes the rain acidic and his manifestations are increasing in power as the seals of his interdimensional cage are further weakened by the machinations of his minions.

 

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Ashen Kisses

feyglade slumber pomumsAshen Kisses CR 4
XP 1200
CE haunt (20 ft. radius)
Caster Level 4th
Notice Perception DC 19 (to smell a flowery perfume)
Hp 4; Trigger proximity; Reset 1 day
Effect: On the round entering the haunt’s glade, anyone within its radius must make a DC 16 Will save or be paralyzed for the round. On a failure, a beautiful maiden manifests and delivers a light kiss on the lips of the unfortunate character, then disappears with a smile on her lips, leaving the paralyzed character(s) free to go.
The maiden manifests in front of each creature that fails their saving throw in the same round. After being subjected to Ashen Kisses, everything the creature puts in his mouth turns to ash, making it impossible for them to eat or drink for one week. This effect can be removed with a remove curse spell.

Destruction: A generous offering of blessed food (10 pounds and well prepared or 20 pounds otherwise) and drink (a barrel of water or several bottles of fine wine) must be placed in the glade where the haunt manifests.

Adventure Hook: The sheriff of Gladeston, a small village in the Auld Forest, wants to know why travelers are showing up with their mouths and throats filled with ashes. Hopefully the party can find out what is happening before rumors of the Ashen Kisses take a toll on trade with nearby villages. Local tales of a famine some centuries ago might reach the PCs’ ears in the local tavern, and several of the farmers in the region have heard of the terrible periods of scarcity. If properly enticed (perhaps convinced by the argument that low trade means low prices), they might be convinced to contribute to ending the plight of Ashen Kisses.

 

[Submitted by Brian Wiborg Monster]

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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Bog of Sacrifices

Image_Portfolio_102_Fantasy Jason Walton 30

The Bog of Sacrifices
XP 4,800
CE persistent haunt (30 ft. radius)
Caster Level 8th
Notice Perception DC 24 (to notice the faint sobbing of doomed sacrifices)
Hp 36; Trigger proximity, (within 5 ft. of the inscribed stone); Reset 1 day
Effect Upon nearing the stone inscribed with prayers to the Bogmother, the haunt triggers and ghostly hands and spectral roots rise from the ground to grab at anyone within the haunt’s radius. Every creature within the area of the haunt is the target of a combat maneuver check made to grapple each round. Creatures that enter the area of effect are also automatically attacked. The ghostly hands and spectral roots do not provoke attacks of opportunity. The ghostly hands and spectral roots have a CMB of +16, and each grapple is resolved individually on creatures in the haunt’s area.

If the ghostly hands and spectral roots succeed in grappling a creature, that creature takes 1d6+4 points of damage on each round it is being grappled, and furthermore gains the grappled condition. Grappled creatures cannot move without first breaking the grapple. All other movement is prohibited unless the creature breaks the grapple first. The ghostly hands and spectral roots receive a +5 bonus on grapple checks made against creatures they are already grappling, but cannot move or pin creatures. Grappled creatures are pulled down into the swampy ground, on the third round of having the grappled condition the creature must also avoid suffocating as it is pulled under the earth.

After three rounds the ghostly hands and spectral roots dissipate and no new grapples will be initiated, but any ongoing grapples are maintained. For those first three rounds, the haunt’s area counts as difficult terrain. The ghostly hands and spectral roots’ CMD is 26 for the purpose of escaping the grapple.

Destruction A series of six icons of the Bogmother stands around the haunt in a distance of one mile, these icons mark the ancient site for the sacrificial rituals of the Bogmother’s worshipers, and must all be destroyed to release the souls from the bottom of the swamp. These icons are all hidden from view by centuries of plant growth or submerged in the swamp, or even protected by a tribe that knows nothing of the icon’s original purpose.

Adventure Hook Centuries ago the swamp was home to several tribes that venerated an evil diety, the Bogmother. The tribes heeded her call for human sacrifice, and many criminals, prisoners of war, and unlucky travelers ended up on the bottom of the swamp honoring the fetid queen. The paladin order of The Righteous Flame cleared the swamp of the Bogmother’s influence and with time she was forgotten. On the bottom of the bogs the sacrifices did not forget, however, and when a recent earthquake pushed a holy relic of the Bogmother to the surface, they seized the opportunity to exact their vengeance in the area around the inscribed prayerstone. The pathways through a vast swamp shift occasionally as the dynamic landscape releases built-up gas, or the soft ground causes whole passages to disappear into the watery parts of the swampfor every path that disappears, another path appears. Recently a minor earthquake destroyed the most stable route through the swamp and soon after travelers started to go missing in the area (more travelers than usual, that is). Rumors of the swamp punishing trespassers quickly surfaced—the drowned body of a local hunter has been found, and now the village elder of nearby Crannolang wants to find out why, if he drowned, the hunter’s face was frozen in fear. 

 

[Submitted by Brian Wiborg Monster though I only included it after this guy because I realize how mean jack-in-a-box-zombies are 😉 -MM]

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Ball of Decadence

medieval-clothing-2Ball of Decadence      CR 9

XP 6400

NE persistent haunt (40 ft. radius)

Caster Level 9th

Notice Perception DC 21 (to notice faint dots of light on the grass)

hp 40; Trigger automatic; Reset 1 week

Effect: When triggered (on a hill outside the small village, once a week at midnight) the haunt transforms the area into a magnificent ballroom. The haunt’s area is full of dancing nobles (their dress style centuries old) but several of the dancers look more like peasants and adventurers whose fashions are more recent, some clutching weapons or tools. Whispers of decadence, drunken revelry and seductive promises fill the heads of anyone within the haunt’s area—any PC within the haunt must take a Will save DC 20 to avoid joining the dance. On the second and third round anyone still in the haunt’s area must take another DC 20 Will save or join the ball—for those already dancing, a DC 22 Will save prevents them from fading away with the dancers after the third round, going back to the castle of the Prince of Revelry in a pocket dimension. Succeeding on the second Will save breaks the haunt’s hold over the character and they are not subject to any more Will saves while the haunt lasts.

Destruction At the exact time the haunt triggers, the still-beating heart of the Prince of Revelry must be pierced with a silver dagger by a virtuous maiden. The virtuous maiden and a silver dagger can be found in the village, but the still beating heart of the Prince of Revelry might prove trickier to procure. 

Adventure Hook The mayor’s youngest daughter has been taken back to the Prince of Revelry’s castle, and understandably the mayor wants her back. The party is hired to travel via the haunt to the castle and rescue her. Legends tell that strong-willed individuals have escaped from the haunt when it manifests; although no one can point out anyone who has done so, it is well known and therefore must be true.

Origin: Altazar Hunthar was the son of a minor noble and a dabbler in all things magical. He was a shy young man and one fateful evening he attended a ball at the local baron’s estate. Unfortunately being an awkward young man, he was easy prey for the experienced socialites at the event. A humiliating experience left Althazar in tears, running into the darkening night. The rain and the muddy road conspired against him and he stumbled from a stone bridge, falling to his end in the ravine below. With his dying breath Altazar cursed everyone at the ball—his all-consuming spite made the curse very real and the baron’s castle disappeared with everyone inside. A year to the day the haunt manifested for the first time, and since then the socialites have danced every week trying to lure more into their midst. When 101 new dancers have been added to the ball, the souls are released to the afterlife, the pocket dimension collapses and the haunt ceases to manifest.

 [Submitted by Brian Wiborg Monster]

Do you have a chilling idea for a haunt or cursed item? Send it along to us at submit (at) adventureaweek.com, but please, bear the following in mind before you submit anything for review:

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