Three: Into the Nest
By Andy Collins
of Corruption" is a short D&D adventure for four 7th-level
characters. The party may consist of any mix of classes. The adventure
is a reasonable challenge for 6th- to 8th-level characters and may be
set in any campaign world.
uses the "Old Tower"
map found in the October section of the Map-A-Week archive.
People have been
disappearing from the town of Brindinford. At first, no one noticed
or gave it any thought. But lately, the disappearances have grown more
noticeable. Indeed, only a few days ago the eldest son of a wealthy
merchant family went missing.
are the work of a small band of yuan-ti led by a most unusual creature:
a vampiric medusa named Kalivilya. This baneful monster "adopted"
the yuan-ti that now serve her, treating them as wayward children despite
their differing origins. For their part, the yuan-ti see Kalivilya as
a kindred serpent soul and powerful ally.
In the first episode,
the PCs tracked down a yuan-ti responsible for many disappearances and
found out that she was bringing her kidnapped victims to a location
called the Crumbling Tower, a few miles southwest of the town. In the
second episode, they made their way to the tower and encountered the
medusa's guardians and outer defenses. Now they stand at the door to
the Tower itself.
The yuan-ti keep
this door unlocked and unbarred, though they block it with a heavy table
if they fear intruders. The windows next to the door are boarded up
(though someone inside could peer out between the boards).
The yuan-ti keep
this door barred (DC 25 Strength check to break down) whenever any of
them are inside the building. The window around the corner is boarded
up (though someone inside could peer out between the boards).
Room (EL 7)
Two pureblood yuan-ti named Vethek and Tyrra, keep guard in this room.
In addition to normal gear, Vethek wears a ring of protection +1
(granting AC 17) and Tyrra wears a pair of slippers of spider climbing.
Each carries a potion of cure moderate wounds.
(2): hp 29, 24; see Monster Manual.
If they see any unfamiliar individuals approaching (through the windows),
or if the shadow mastiff's baying alerts them, the two yuan-ti block
the door with a table (DC 18 Strength check to open) and move to area
7. Vethek takes up a defensive position in the doorway, while Tyrra
uses her slippers to perch above the doorway and attacks anyone coming
If surprised, the
yuan-ti fight defensively, falling back to area 7 if possible.
If a fight occurs in area 6, the residents of the lower level may hear
it (DC 15 from area 9, DC 20 from area 10). Reduce these DCs by 5 if
the fight occurs in area 7. Though the residents won't come to the aid
of their guards, they will be ready for the PCs when they approach.
If the vampire spawn
are currently residing in area 7, they will assist the yuan-ti as needed.
The two-story tower
is largely unused. Chunks of rubble and piles of rotting planks and
timbers lie about the chamber. A stone staircase leads up along the
south wall to a landing, though the upper floor has completely collapsed
(the rubble has been cleared and removed). The roof above is in disrepair
but relatively intact.
During daylight hours, the vampire spawn detailed at area 3 reside here
in their coffins, which are concealed under a pile of rotting timbers
along the north wall. They can operate normally anywhere within the
Crumbling Tower during daylight, since all windows are boarded up.
(2): hp 28, 25; see Monster Manual.
Trap Door to Cellar (EL 4)
The trap door leading
to the cellar area -- a simple stone plug with an iron pull ring --
is hidden beneath a pile of rocks, but a Search check (DC 15) reveals
stone plug allowing access to the cellar is trapped with a contact poison
on the iron pull ring. Bypassing the trap is simple -- simply lift the
plug using one of the fragments of metal lying about. This requires
a DC 12 Strength check to open (two characters can work together if
root paste): Type contact DC 16; initial damage 1 Dex, secondary
damage 2d4 Dex; Search (DC 20); Disable Device (DC 20).
As they open the
trap door, the characters get a whiff of brimstone, mixed with the unmistakable
smell of snakes. Many, many snakes.