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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Shrine of Kwathogga

This short adventure seed is inspired by this map posted by Matt Jackson on G+

After being attacked by a vicious mutated, toothed duck as they camp by a remote stream, the adventurers can track it back to its lair if they so desire.   They come upon a shallow, musty cave, reeking of duck droppings and littered with bones and scraps of clothing, apparently from other victims of the mutant duck.  If a torch is used and a careful search is performed, the adventurers can note a partially chewed femur protruding from what appears to be the base of the rear wall.

Closer examination will reveal the faint outlines of a secret door carved into the rock wall.  The ground in front of the door shows semi-circular grooves in the dirt and what appear to be webbed foot prints, some the size of a normal duck, such as the one which attacked them, and more disturbingly, some as large as a man’s footprint.

Removing the bone from under the door, it can be easily pulled open, revealing a rough stairway leading down into the dark.  An odor reminiscent of chicken coops, mixed with the smell of damp and mildew, overlain with a pervading scent of rotted meat, blasts forth from the depths, causing all but those of the strongest stomachs to gag from the smell.  A dim, flickering light, as from a torch, can be seen at the bottom of the stairs, and a rhythmic sound of what seems to be waterfowl can be heard echoing through the darkness.

If the adventurers proceed quietly, they may find that the rooms to either side at the bottom of the stairs are empty of living creatures.

The room on the right appears to be a sleeping room of sorts, but instead of cots or beds, there are half a dozen large ‘nests’ around the room.   Two of them, if investigated, have large eggs, the size of a small keg, covered under the straw.

The room on the right seems to be some type of mess hall and kitchen combination, but the fare is none that sane men wish to sup from.  On the preparation table lies the remains of a dismembered human corpse, and on one of the plates, a partially eaten hand.   

Searching this room may reveal another secret door, this one cleverly disguised as a pantry shelf, triggered by pushing down on the one broken shelf that sits at the bottom.

Descending into the damp darkness that the secret door leads to, reveals a large, underground water source, the far reaches of which cannot be revealed by torchlight.  (this may lead to additional adventures if the referee so desires.)

In the final room of the complex, as the adventurers approach the door, the rhythmic quacking, for it cannot be denied to be anything but, grows to a frenzied pitch.  Behind the door, which is a heavy stone affair, carved with what appears to be ducks, but with tentacles coming out of their beaks; lies the foul temple of Kwathogga, god of the Anatidae (waterfowl).  A dozen beastmen, with duck visages and feathered bodies, are chanting (quacking), as another of their number, robed in multicolored feathers and adorned with what appears to be human scalps, begins to pour oils upon the freshly severed heads of four human males, each adorned with a wild, scraggly beard.

If the Adventurers are noticed, they will be in for a fight to the death with the duck people, the leader of whom is a shaman/cleric/witchdoctor type of equal ability to the most powerful member of the adventuring group.

Should the Adventurers survive the encounter, the two statues on the right side of the temple are covered in a layer of hammered gold and have eyes of precious gems.  Beneath the altar is a cache of weapons, coin and items that have been taken from those unfortunate enough to blunder near the duck people’s lair.       The leader of the duck people also possessed a magical amulet that allows the wearer to speak and understand any language he hears, and a magical dagger that ignores half of a target’s armor protection.

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