Into the Forsaken Temple's Crypt
By Ramon Arjona
Four: The Silent Guardians
the Forsaken Temple's Crypt is a short adventure for four 10th-level
characters. The adventure takes place in a buried temple crypt, which
has been sealed for centuries. Dungeon Masters can adjust it for higher-level
characters by widening the dead magic areas and increasing the number
and power of constructs and undead that inhabit the complex.
have entered the Forsaken Temple's crypt and started exploring a bit.
They had the opportunity to work with some drow, who warn of some clay
golems ahead. Now they face the very golems that killed a drow cleric.
move deeper into the crypt, perhaps with their newfound drow "friends."
They know they're going to confront a pair of clay golems who guard the
Traitor's final resting place. The crypt holds other dangers, though,
and they are probably not yet aware of the statue of Corellon Larethian
that also serves to dissuade would-be tomb robbers.
6 (EL 9)
characters enter Area 4, read the following boxed text.
a raised dais in the northeast corner of this room stands a statue
of a tall elven man in chainmail. His right hand rests on the pommel
of his longsword, which is sheathed. He holds a large round shield
up, as though defending himself against an attacker. More ancient
writing decorates the shield and the steps of the dais.
characters recognize this immediately as a statue of Corellon Larethian.
The writing on the dais steps is a final warning to turn back. If the
characters succeed in reading it, they gain the message below. The "writing"
on the shield is in fact an intricately carved symbol of persuasion.
Tolth is aware of this, and if the PCs look like they might try to read
the writing on the shield, she warns them to stop. She makes up whatever
lie she thinks will keep the PCs from triggering the symbol, probably
trying to convince them that it is actually a symbol of death.
Message: The golden thread binds the great evil. Turn back lest
it unravel or entangle you.
Symbol of Persuasion: CR 9; once read, all creatures
in 60-foot radius become neutral good for 1d20x10 minutes and fall
under a charm person spell as if cast by an 18th level wizard
-- see spell description; Will save negates (DC 26); Search (DC
33); Disable Device (DC 33).
or looking at the symbol will not trigger its effect, only attempting
to read it will. Characters affected by the symbol of persuasion
are much more receptive to the warnings posted here and elsewhere in the
crypt, and they heed them immediately to the best of their ability. If
the PCs have only partially understood the messages, they try to heed
what they believe the messages mean rather than what they actually do.
herself is unaffected by the symbol, a likely outcome with her
high Will save and spell resistance, she encourages Surya and the PCs
to use dispel magic spells to counter the effect of the symbol,
or she waits until the effect wears off.
is affected by the symbol, her sudden change of alignment gives
her a completely new perspective on her situation. She immediately tells
the PCs everything she knows about the Traitor, and then she confesses
that she and her companions came to the crypt to free her. She deeply
regrets this, and now she is committed to destroying the Traitor so no
other misguided souls can attempt this again. She is now even more committed
to getting past the clay golems. Surya and Turizz, if unaffected by the
symbol, both assume that Tolth is playing a clever ruse. Once the
effect of the symbol wears off, Tolth may continue to play along
as if her "change of heart" were permanent, if this serves her
simple for any Medium-size or smaller creature to squeeze past the statue
of Corellon and get through the door he is guarding. This door is slightly
ajar from the drow's hasty escape from the golems.
7, 8, 9 (EL 12)
characters enter Area 7, read the following:
temperature rises sharply as the stench of burning tar fills the
air. A stone bridge stretches across a boiling tar lake. At the
other end of the bridge stands a pair of tall elven statues formed
out of brown clay. They begin to move slowly toward you.
guardians have a more elegant shape than the average clay golem because
of their elven manufacture, but otherwise conform to the statistics listed
in the Monster Manual. They cross the bridge and attack characters
in Area 7, but they do not pursue characters back to Area 6. If the golems
engage in melee while on the bridge (Area 6), they shift their tactics
somewhat. Instead of trying to pummel their opponents, they sometimes
try to trip them. Player characters who fall into the tar take 1d6 points
of damage the first round. They must then make a Swim check (DC 20) to
avoid sinking. A character who has sunk into the tar takes 10d6 damage
each round and must make a Swim check to struggle back to the surface.
A character at the surface may escape the tar with a successful Climb
or Escape Artist check. Due to the sheer heavy and clinging consistency
of the tar, those attempting to pull characters out of the tar must make
successful Strength checks (DC 20) to do so.
should be expecting the golems and have likely had opportunity to discuss
strategy beforehand. One possible plan of attack is to collapse the bridge
while the golems are standing on it, then use some other means, perhaps
magical, to get across the boiling tar. There is a weakened section of
bridge near the middle, which PCs might notice, that would be the ideal
target for this tactic. Use the rules for causing a cave-in on page 114
of the Dungeon Master's Guide. If the clay golems fall into
the tar, either because the bridge was destroyed under them or through
some other means, they sink like, well, large lumps of clay and are not
heard from again.
normal circumstances, Tolth is not above sacrificing the PCs or her own
followers (with Surya being the only exception) if it will get her past
the clay golems and into the Traitor's tomb.
Golems(2): hp 60; see Monster Manual, page 110.
Hoc XP Adjustment
of the bridge, the golem encounter decreases by 20%. Additionally, if
the drow help the PCs, you should award the resulting XP from the encounter
to the group plus the drow.
to the Traitor's tomb lies ahead. The final secrets of the crypt may be
uncovered, but will the PCs withstand the evil they are about to encounter?