Sunday, September 17, 2017

Cold Fae North Encounters

Fae Snow Digger [18]
 Cold Fae North
For OSR Adventures

[1] 3d6 Holes in the snow, each filled with blood. It's warm and fresh. The source of the blood is unknown. If desperate, the party could drink the blood to get some liquid and/or warm up a little.

[2] Icy winds blow down upon the party. Make an exposure/cold damage roll. (If you are already giving them out regularly, make this TWO rolls).
The wind is magic and can be sensed early with a detect magic; enough time to take cover. It's coming from [8]. If your party has agreed to a mission, the wind will pass them by without harm.

[3] 1d6 Ice Arrows lay in a shallow depression in the ground. These arrows can melt but deal bonus cold damage. Also counts as magic weapons. Fae in the area will gladly give you a favor or trade you 1 GP per arrow.

[4] Crying child in the woods. Is not fully human, but not fully fae either. The child claims to be cold and very hungry, but in truth the cold doesn't bother the child at all. If taken on as a follower or raised to adulthood; has a complete immunity to cold damage.

[5] Dead bear in the woods with 1d4 Ice arrows embedded in it. Clever players will realize that the bear must have been dead before being shot with the arrows; else they would have melted from its hot blood. 50% chance the pelt is in good enough condition to use or sell, else the bear has been torn to shreds by dogs, blades, arrow wounds, and other indescribable injuries.

[6] Small cottage up in the woods. Light comes out from the window and a small smokestack from the chimney. Looks warm and inviting. Truthfully it is a mirage, dreamed up by a mean old forest fae. Instead the illusion is;
  1. Random monster, roll on monster table
  2. Burnt out old inn. 4 Heavy cloaks.
  3. Old witch cottage. Random potion.
  4. Icy crevice- If you fail the first save you need help to get out or special abilities. If you fail again you die.
[7] The party encounters a rival adventuring party (roll on table) in a snowy field. There is a 25% chance they are hostile. If you have already sworn a quest to one of the fairy queens, then instead there is a 50% chance they are hostile and working for the other queen.

[8] The Fairy Queen of the Chilling Winds. She is in a war with her sister, the Fairy Queen of the Frozen Waters. She believes that wind is truly what creates cold, and will one day cover the world in apocalyptic freezing wind storms and blizzards.

The Queen will accept any visitors and is polite, but demands that all fire and heat producing objects be given to her guards for protection. Additionally, she will also take away any magic weapons or ice arrows she sees. These will be returned to the party when they leave only if they've agreed to at least one Fae Quest.

The party can agree to any number of fae quests, and is given rewards based on agreeing, not upon completion. Fairies believe in a promise more then the deed being done. If the quest is failed or no attempt is made at it then the fairy queen will probably send spies, assassins, and foul magics across the world to kill any offending party members and the rest of the party.

[9] Several snares and bear traps dot a small area, and will require careful watch to notice. If the party stays here more then 30 minutes (searching/making their way through the traps) or make too much noise in the trapped area, they will attract the attention of 1d6 Trappers.

Trappers (1HD, AC 11, bows d6, when they run 50% chance to run faster then a human)
The trappers are tall humanoids which, at first glance, have fluffy deer-coats and wear antlers on their heads. Closer examination reveals they are actually bipedal deer with human-like faces. They trap things and kill them with their bows.

There will be 1d4 Ice Arrows among them as a special weapon against magic or fae enemies they trap. They don't communicate in common or deer.

[10] Frozen Lake. Skirting around the edges has no issue, however going too close to the center may cause the ice to crack or break, sliding the party to their doom in the freezing cold water. If more then 6 people are walking across the thin ice, or if at least 3 are wearing heavy gear, then the ice will probably break, requiring reaction rolls to avoid falling in and getting hypothermia.

The fairy lands here mean that myth and language have started to seep into reality and the rules of nature. Any character with a name including 'fire' or 'flame', or one that is known for using flaming weapons or having an obsession with fire gets a +1 to saves involving Hypothermia from this lake.

At the bottom of the lake is the The Fairy Queen of the Frozen Waters. She is in a war with her sister, the Fairy Queen of the Chilling Winds. She believes that water is truly what creates cold, and will one day cover the world in a flood of frozen water and ice.

Like her sister, she accepts visitors and is polite, giving out blessings for accepting fae quests. Unlike her sister however she has a bit more macabre of a personality. She will offer 8 Ice Arrows for the child at [4]. Additionally; any party member that has drowned anyone on purpose or accidentally will be doted upon and flirted with for seemingly no reason.

[11] Small felled tree with a woodsman's axe still stuck in it. Nearby the felled tree are six wooden logs stacked in a small pyramid, ready to be carried and used as firewood. They are found on a small elevated patch of dirt beneath a tree, and are dry to the touch.

When used, these logs actually reduce the size and warmth of fires and slowly put them out. Each log is actually a block of ice hidden by fairy magic. Unless special track is kept of firewood, the party will need to dispose of all their firewood before finding new stuff that will burn reliably, due to the logs being enchanted to appear as normal wood. The axe is utterly normal and of decent quality, it could be used as a weapon or for sale.

[12] Fairy Merchant. Bright blue-skinned man, flying on tiny pixie wings. Drags along a dog-sled with no dogs, he drags it himself. The sled contains a large variety of useful goods for survival, as well as magical items.

The fae merchant trades in only two currencies; Ice Arrows and Thoughtstuff. He doesn't buy anything else or use anything else for trade; each Ice Arrow is equal to 1 unit for Thoughtstuff. He also offers to tell you about fae illusions in the woods for the low price of 1 Ice Arrow or Thoughtform. If this information is purchased he will warn the party about [6], [11], and [13].

As for items, he will sell anything the party would want for 1 Ice Arrow, and anything they need for 2. Anything that would save the life of yourself, a party member, or would end a curse costs 3.

Thoughtforms are memories and personality traits taken from party members by the fairies in exchange for trade. They should always be moderately, but not severely important. He will always give an offer to buy one thoughtform from each party member, giving new ones to each that accepts to sell the first, but doesn't give a new offer unless the first is accepted. These memories include things like prophetic dreams, faces of loved ones, old songs, dances of their people, trade skills, even positive personality traits like confidence, quick wits, or libido can be drained. (at the cost of relevant mental attribute. Otherwise just decrease character's save vs death by -2 permanently, or take a reasonable amount of experience as drain)

[13] The party see the silhouettes of a rival adventuring party go over a nearby hill, covered in snow. Racing after them will result in them always being a hill ahead or so, but never too far ahead to follow.

These figures are actually illusions and leave no tracks. Additionally if the party is on a fairy quest they may see something relevant to their quest objective instead, always just out of reach.

[14] You've found a rare sight, a nursing mother wolf. She is in a very shallow cave depression; nursing her pups. Each pup is snow white, except for a single black furred runt. The mother will bite and howl for help if you try to hurt her or take any of the cubs except for the black one, which she ignores utterly.

If the black cub survives, it will be a runty (coyote or dog sized) black wolf with uncanny intelligence and human understanding. It will be loyal to anyone who feeds it milk and trains it, but is extremely aggressive towards other dogs.

If the mother wolf howls or she is killed, the party will, within a day, be attacked by a pack of 2d6 white wolves. (stats as wolves, but camouflaged).

[15] Small tree among the frozen woods. The tree has several large, walnut like seeds still clinging to its branches. The seeds can be shaken out from the tree or gathered by hitting them with a thrown object.

Each seed can either be buried in the dirt or snow, even the frozen earth, and will instantly sprout a single green leaf from the ground. If broken open instead, the seed will contain a single tiny flower bud, randomly.
  1. Tulip
  2. Rose
  3. Sunflower (tiny)
  4. Cherry Blossom
  5. Lotus
  6. Orchid
Inside the trunk of the tree is a small hollow where an owl may nest. Instead inside is the diminutive form of a Spring Fairy, curled up in a ball and long since frozen to death. The poor thing is wearing a faded floral-pattern dress and has a crown of rotted flowers on its head. Anyone who buries this fairy will receive a free saving throw for the next natural poison or disease they are inflicted with.

[16] An Igloo in the middle of a field. The inside of the igloo can be used as a safe spot to rest from monsters or the weather. If the night is spent inside, outside the igloo will be one random encounter waiting for the party.

[17] The battle pit. Seemingly random dug pit in the deep snow and mud, the bottom of which has been scraped so much dirt (and copious amounts of blood and gore) are visible. Nearby the pit are several humans and animal remains, more of which are inside. Inside the pit is also fully of moderate though cold and usually damaged equipment. Roll two random encounters and somehow combine them into one force to send at the party here. If it is impossible, or they work for two separate fae queens, just have one immediately attack after another, the second one waiting for the first attack to finish or fail as to mob up the weakened survivors.

The battle starts as soon as a party members climbs down into the pit or starts to search for treasure in the remainds. Beyond what they find on the wandering encounter, there is also a large amount of gear in the pit that is still usable or salvageable. Roll 1d12 per party member; this gear will either already be in the pit or newly acquired from the random encounters.
  1. Materials for a bone spear or hatchet
  2. Tiny box; dry war-paint, random color.
  3. Leather flask; 50% chance for it to be filled with water or beer. Name Jur stitched in.
  4. Five copper piercings.
  5. Head of a flail with attached chain, broken, 10 feet away from the handle.
  6. Tiny glass vial, miraculously unbroken. Contains Vapors of Warrior spirit; grants +1 AC and To-Hit for one battle.
  7. Wooden shield, half stuck in ground.
  8. Ruined war banner. Actually enchanted; if renovated it will grant +1 to morale checks to the party if painted their colors.
  9. Mummified bird with a long cord tied around its neck as if to be worn as a penance or strange fashion statement.
  10. Curious Left-Gauntlet of a suit of plate, painted red.
  11. Almost exact duplicate of one of the party member's weapons, except it is inferior in every way. Even mimics enchantments, but they are never strong enough to be useful.
  12. Collar of a war dog, diamond studded.
[18] Multiple Fae Snow-Diggers. Strongly built and squat humanoids with pale faces barely visible through thick coats and furskins. The diggers claim they are digging snow off a road needed for business and trade, but they have started in some random pit in the middle of nowhere, and they seem to be slaking something fierce.

Each digger also has an obsession with killing people and burying them, or burying them alive. They use great bladed shovels to do this, and will wait until the party's back is turned to try and hit them with a shovel.

Snow-Diggers (1HD, AC 10, To hit +1 but damage -1. Can throw snow to blind enemies) Same number appearing as the party.

The snow diggers are not very powerful, but without a blessing from the fae queens the snow diggers will keep digging themselves up from the grave to fight the party again and again.

[19] Small cottage in the woods lived in by a small family of totally normal humans. They are terrified of any and all visitors and will treat them very well, almost unreasonably so, because they believe them to be Fae in disguise. If the party proves they are not fae the family won't treat them as well but will trust them much more, up to and including giving them a magic ice-sword stowed away in the ice under the house.

The ice-sword acts as an ice arrow and counts as 5 ice arrows for trading with fae. Any fae that see you with it however will be suspicious or hostile if you refuse to give it to them or trade it to them as it is a powerful fae-killing weapon. It adds the user's Charisma modifier bonus to the weapon's damage vs Fae creatures. But it can melt like ice.

[20] Short fat imp-like man with icicle horns. He is a minor frost Fae who needs to be colder to achieve his next form. If you help him he'll give you a golden ring that improves one stat of your choice by +2. If you kill him you'll get the ring but it curses the user as well giving -1 to every other stat. The stat can be changed by clicking the ring, but the cursed ring can't be taken off.

Random Encounters
Roll d6

(1) Witch Hunters, 1d4+1 appearing. The group will attack the party if they under any fae quests, appear to have magic items or magic users with them. Each Witch Hunter also carries a Craft Tablet; a small clay tablet with prayers and wishes from back home which grants +1 to saving throws vs spells and +1 AC against Fae. The party can use these but they only work one per person and have a ¼ chance to break during the fight. (Chance goes to ½ if party members hit the Witch Hunter with a heavy blunt weapons).

Witch Hunter (2HD, 12 AC, inscribed axes d6, 1 craft tablet each). Leader has d8 hammer and scroll that turns Fae like Turn Undead.

(2) 1d6 Gnolls. 50% for the Gnolls to be starving and ghoulishly thin and cold, or the Gnolls have white fur and have been touched by the Fae here.

The Gnolls are superstitious and can be scared off by herding them towards any of the illusions at
[6], [11], and [13]. They can smell it and will yip and run away.

(3) Starving, naked madman cannibal. Stalks the party and prefers to steal clothing or food then fight, but if cornered he will fight back as a 3rd Level Fighter and Magic User. He uses debilitating or cursing spells and has 1d20 HP.

(4) False People. Made of snow and ice, these beings don't bleed or feel pain, but their bodies are easily hacked apart by even basic weapons. They are only armed with rocks and sticks, and fight to draw blood. They drink any blood they find, then run off to 'digest' it so they can become living.

False People (Only has 1 Health each, 3d6 appearing, AC 10, basic d4 attacks. take double damage from flame and fire.)

If they find blood from another dead corpse or from
[1], they will drink that instead and become amnesiacs, cruelly most will probably die from exposure shortly after becoming alive anyway. 

(5) Spring Court Fairies. On the Wild Hunt- 1d6+1 Appearing. At least one of the appearing ones will be a Spring Shaman.

Spring Court Fae (2HD, 12 AC, 1d6 magic wooden weapons, weak to ice arrows but they melt after dealing damage).Spring Shaman (2HD+1, 14 AC bark armor, 1d8 magic spear. Can cast entangling roots instaed of attacking during the turn.)

The Spring Fairies are extremely easy to sneak up on and its very unlikely they can sneak up on anyway. This is because their steps melt ice and snow and cause flowers and grass to bloom up around them. Any tree they touch will also sprout a few leaves and dead bodies they touch or the people they kill sprout into fungal bloom.

(6) Winter Court Fairies. They use freezing cold weapons that deal 1 cold damage automatically to anyone they attack, even if blocked by AC. If the party has sworn to one of the Fairy Queens, 50% chance these fairies won't be hostile and be on the same side.

1D8 Fairies appear, typically out of snow itself.
Winter Court Fae (2HD, 11 AC, 1d6 frozen weapons, can weakened if heated up (such as with warm water or blankets.)

Rival Adventuring Parties
Roll 1d4

(1) Mimi's Misanthropes. Group of strange weirdos from other lands and places. Try to put on the image of them getting along well despite all odds but actually fight constantly.Mimi (Magic User) Long tailed naga with orange colored scales. She's nearly comatose in this cold place, and her party are getting tired of her uselessness. Using most of her magic to warm herself up, but has a spell that lets he constrict someone from a distance by using a body double.Ghoul-Eater (Fighter) Gnoll with wicked teeth. Takes pleasure in eating undead creatures, as if to 'show them what it is like'. His bite is bacterial and counts as save vs poison or contract major disease.
Vaulter (Thief) Young goblin obsessed with catapults, trebuchets, and other war machines that launch things far distances. Also obsessed with launching himself in one to go over walls and into high-tower windows to steal shit, but is just barely smart enough to know better.Fordk of Hob (Cleric) Mean old hobgolin that worships hobgoblins Gods. Sort of wants to betray his party and enslave them to hobgoblins, but needs to find a group first. Bullies Vaulter constantly.Gabbosh (Fighter) Large mountain man covered in animal pelts. Fights with bows and axe. He appears very pale and doesn't breathe, claims to be an intelligent undead. Isn't actually; his true mind is coming from the wolf pelt he wears over his head; if destroyed the body falls limp instantly. 

(2) Group lost in the North due to a fairy curse. They need to kill one of the fairy queens in order to escape, 50% chance for it to the be the one the player's allied with or the one they did not. Will trade high amounts of gold and goods for ice arrows and the Icy sword, but not more then they'd need to survive. They aren't stupid.
Xerxes (Elf) Extremely burly and strong. His connection with nature and magic means he could probably escape without his party, but he feels responsible for them. Carries a heavy box filled with jewlery from defeated foes. Will spare anyone he beats if they have a piercing or jewelry, will take the jewelry instead.Ula (Magic User) Female magic user who has created a new level 1 spell out here. The spell fires a snowball from the Wizard's hand with speed and accuracy, but deals little damage unless the snowball has a rock in it. Deals sling damage.
Fin the Longbow (Thief) Folk hero of middling fame around these areas, his legend is fading due to him being trapped up here. Skilled with a bow and crossbow, but knows several trick shots including one that makes it appear as though his arrows are coming from a different direction then they actually are.
Young Deltus (Thief) Young dishonored military solider. Still uses his old equipment, but is better at stealing then fighting. Still pretty good at fighting. 14+ strength and con, +2 to hit.

(3) The Red Armor Crew. Each holds a piece of red plate armor, colored by some kind of strange lacquer. They have split up the armor among themselves because of none of them fully trust the others with the whole set.
Galgos (Fighter) Leader, wears the breastplate of the armor and has +3 AC. Knows the most about the armor and how to use it, but loyal to his crew.
Lory (Fighter) Wields the helmet of the armor granting +2 AC, but it is somewhat hampering his vision, so he has -1 to hit.
Westson (Fighter) Has the right gauntlet of the armor and pauldrons. Uses a fast and aggressive duelist style, +1 AC and to hit. Will always accept a 1 on 1 duel, even if stupid.
Gribbles (Magic User) Crazy old witch with a lot of animated equipment. She wears the leggings and greeves of the armor, but they hang off her loosely as she levitates anyway. She releases a small army of enchanted knick-knacks that are animated and attack whoever she wishes.

The left Gauntlet is missing, it is currently stuck in the Battle Pit [17]. They don't remember dropping it there, but they did remember fighting there. They will trade or attack to get it back.

The completed set of Armor is called the Red Cloud. Anyone who wears the whole thing can march into the dreams of anyone sleeping nearby and can fight them in their dream, or potentially use their dream to travel to another person's dream. If you kill someone in their dream, you'll wake up in their place. If they kill you they will remain where they would but wake up in the armor with you missing forever. People are much stronger in their dreams then in real life, capable of super human feats and magic powers even if they are not Magic Users normally. The armored person is still bound by their normal abilities.

(4) Changelings. This entire party has been replaced by changelings, who avoid having any personality as to 'blend in better'. If any of them are revealed to be changelings by the players, they will all laugh and say 'thank goodness, I thought I was the only one!” and then attack.
They have 1d4 Fighters, 1 Thief and 1 Magic User.

Fairy Queen Quests
Both fairy queens will give you these quests, but never the same one twice. You can sneak around their palaces, but you may encounter traps.

Roll 1d6
(1) Dig 2d6 holes in the snow and fill them each with the blood of different creatures. 

(2) Kill all of Mimi's Misanthropes and bury them in individual graves with tombstones and say the vows over their corpses; give them the death of the civilized.

(3) Strategic Strike against the enemy Queen. Take the opposite queen; if Queen of the Frozen Waters you must break the ice on the lake at [10], if it is the Queen of the Chilling Winds you must capture some of the Blizzard at [2] in a bottle. When captured, the blizzard will stop.

(4) Cut down and burn the tree at [15]. Doing this quest will probably anger a party of Spring Fae as per Random Encounter (5). Additionally, for the next year and a day your party smells evil to any nature-based Clerics and/or Druids. 

(5) Drive away the family at (19). The Queen does not specify if you must or must not kill them, just simply make them leave the area. 

(6) Not a quest- instead trade with me a major memory for the blessing. This will either be a random important memory from one character, a memory such that it defines their personality, or a large chunk of their training and experience since adventuring. This counts as -2 levels of level drain, but can be shared among 2 party members.

Fairy Queen Blessings- Go in order of number of quests accepted.
[1] Blessing- +1 to all saves vs cold weather and you can permanently kill Snow Diggers.
[2] You receive a Fae Arrow. Never misses its target, but deals no damage vs Fae.
[3] Fae Title. Can be traded verbally. Worth 500gp
[4] You are given a 3inch tall, fairy servant, who follows you for a year and a day. Casts illusions.
[5] You are gifted a Fairy Steed.
[6] Gifted a magical wish. Counts as a Wish spell, but the Wisher slowly transforms into a cruel Fae over the next few years, shifting to Chaotic. Has all the weaknesses and signs of being Fae.

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