- The adventurers are hired by the mayor of a town to infiltrate a deserted Dwarven stronghold to destroy a lich's phylactery. The lich has stashed his phylactery in the attic of the stronghold and is wreaking havoc in the town.
- The stronghold is deserted, yet still filled with traps and dangers, as well as various critters that have taken up residence therein. The adventurers should be fairly well-known in the area, having accomplished many good and heroic deeds.
Unfortunately for the adventurers (although fortunate for the townspeople) most of their heroism has been to thwart many of the lich's plans, albeit unwittingly. The lich is now fed up with their meddling ways and will go to just about any lengths to stop them. However, he has gone not only slightly insane, but also slightly senile. These factors, together with his ego, lead him to believe that he is invincible, even if the adventurers were to learn the whereabouts of his phylactery.
- Unbeknownst to the adventurers -- or the townspeople for that matter -- the mayor is actually the lich. He has held the mayor's office for over a generation; with the onset of senility he has started doing his best to destroy the town. He is also fed up with the meddling of the adventurers and has determined that the best way to destroy them is not from a direct assault (which may reveal his identity) but by leading them into a fatal trap built into the stronghold by the original inhabitants. He believes that they will be killed long before they manage to find and destroy his phylactery. As for the adventurers, they likely have confronted the lich (or vice-versa) on at least one occasion, however his spells have, up until now, kept them from connecting him with the person they see as the mayor.
Upon reaching the attic, the adventurers find a heavy iron door set firmly into the stone walls. The attic itself is comparitively small in relation to the rest of the floors; the inner room itself measures only fifty feet square. The door is locked with an impressively complicated lock (DC 40). There is a narrow, flickering beam of light that shines through the keyhole onto the floor in front of the door. The beam of light is actually part of a trap on the door; when the light beam is broken (key, lockpick, etc.) withouth the trap beind disarmed, a fusillade of spears springs up from the floor dealing damage to all those in a 10-foot by ten-foot area in front of the door. The floor is filled with small holes from which the spears spring forth.
Once the adventurers reach the inner room -- the attic proper -- they see a room lined with metal walls, floor, and ceiling, between which rolls an enormous ball of lightning. On the opposite side of the room from the door is a long 2-level table that runs the full length of the far wall. On both tiers of the table rest over 100 sealed canopic jars. Each jar is identical to every other, except in one way: each jar has the name of the lich written on the seal in a different language.
Only one of these jars is the actual phylactery; the lich's name is printed in his native tongue on the seal. Whether the adventurers know the lich's true native tongue is up to the DM's discretion (or prior campaign knowledge). All the other jars are filled with flour. Each time one of the flour-filled jars are opened or broken, the air is filled with highly-flammable flour and dust, which -- due to the highly-charged atmosphere in the room -- will immediately ignite into a 2d6 fireball (as the spell). The flour detonations will not break any other canopic jar, although a PC-generated fireball will break them. The lightning ball will also not damage or break open the canopic jars.
- Fusillade of Spears: CR 7; mechanical; proximity trigger; timed reset; Atk +21 ranged (1d8+5, spear); multiple targets (1d6 spears per target in a 10 ft.-by-10-ft. area); Search DC 26; Disable Device DC 35
- Lightning Ball: Treat as the flaming sphere spell, with the following changes: the sphere of electricity is a 10-foot-diameter sphere and deals 3d6 electric damage to anycreature it strikes. A successful Reflex save saves for half damage.
- Canopic Jars: (Tiny) Hardness 5, AC 8, 3 HP
This is the fifth of 26 adventures that I will be sharing over the month of September. They are designed for use with edition 3.5 of the world’s most popular fantasy RPG, although they can be easily dropped into any fantasy setting (or modern/sci-fi setting with a little work). These posts are a part of Asshat Paladin’s OSR Short Adventure Challenge , and utilize his Get Ready, Get Set, Go! Format.