How to Use
Cobb Crossing is a small farming settlement. The heroes can stumble upon this place while they travel somewhere else. This can also serve as a resting spot for the heroes after a dangerous mission. Either way, Cobb Crossing is full of colorful NPCs that might require the help of newcomers. The possible hazards and dangers presented here are intended for a group of level 2.
Cobb Crossing used to be a military outpost. A long time has passed since the last drop of blood was shed here. The times of war ended and the soldiers stationed here thought of this location as a punishment for nothing ever happened during their week-long shifts. A couple of decades of calm have allowed for the outpost to grow and become a thorp, and then a small village.
The place owes its name to the leader of the army that conquered this hill. Commander Cobb was ordered to stand his ground and impede the enemy from trespassing this region. The military outpost and its walls were built for Cobb and his men. They succeeded in defending the place. Soon after, the war ended. The commander left this world many years ago. A war hero that shall always be remembered.
Today, the fortified outpost on top of the hill overlooks dozens of residences, farms, and houses. Cobb Crossing is the home of almost two hundred people. They work hard to make ends meet. But they are happy to be part of this. They consider themselves pioneers of the land.
The crown is aware of the healthy growth of Cobb Crossing. The time of transition has come. Lord Castilla has been appointed as the new major of the village. He is to take over the outpost which shall be his new home. Sergeant Geoffrey, the current military authority stationed here, will be rewarded for his time and given a post somewhere else. The presence of a lord and his rulership are certain to improve the economic growth of the place even more.
When the heroes arrive at Cobb Crossing, this transition and the major’s arrival are scheduled to happen in one week.
The following descriptions of areas 1 through 10 correspond to the map of Cobb Crossing.
Terrain. Cobb Crossing is an 80-feet-tall hill surrounded by miles of farmland. The land becomes more irregular the closer one gets to the hill. Farmers have plowed and worked the land around it for years and have made it more even.
Smells and Sounds. The smell of apple from the Ritters’s orchard fills the entire village. It is stronger at dawn.
Demography. Cobb Crossing is the home of nearly 200 people. 90% of the population are humans. The rest is a mix of various races. They are mostly farmers and ranchers.
Main Exports. Hay, wheat, and corn are the things they export the most. Ritters’s apples are mainly for local consumption.
1. The Lost Piglet
This house belongs to Hailey Daraft, a peddler. She has a cute little pet. A miniature piglet that went missing a few hours ago. Hailey says that Pudding, the piglet, wears a pink ribbon. She believes the pig got lost after following a trail of mushrooms. She offers 25 gold pieces for its rescue.
If the heroes accept to help the woman, a good tracker (DC 13 Survival) can easily follow the small piglet’s hoof tracks even in the forest. If the heroes succeed in tracking the piglet, they find it right on time to save it from a constrictor snake. Otherwise, the snake has already eaten the pig when they get here. Even if they kill the snake, Pudding died from asphyxiation.
Chaotic good human (age 34)
Hailey is used to traveling to neighboring towns to sell her wares. She wears a short, grey mohawk, and she has brown eyes. Her skin is white and she has a sharp build.
Manner. Puffy eyes from crying. Blows her nose every thirty seconds.
2. The Tiefling Organization
The town’s locksmith lives here. He is the son of a big family. Ten people live in the large building. People in town are fond of Xalvador but everyone agrees that the local locksmith can be a bit of a looney sometimes. Right now, the young half-elf is convinced that he is being followed, stalked, and chased by a tiefling organization. He asks the heroes for their protection if they meet.
If the heroes are willing to listen to him, he explains that there is a tiefling organization called “Demons Among Us”. He claims he crossed them in the past and they remember. He moved to Cobb Crossing a year ago but he has a hunch that he is being tailed and observed. The paranoid half-elf offers the heroes 50 silver pieces if they can protect him for two days. He is certain the tiefling mafia will attack soon.
If the heroes agree, Xalvador asks the heroes to camp outside his home to show the attackers he is not alone. The first day, nothing happens. But the second night he heroes spend at Xalvador’s, an attack indeed happens. A group of six horned humanoids (commoners) attempt to ambush the heroes and kidnap Xalvador. The attackers are armed with clubs and staves. They surrender if any of them drops to 0 hit points. If the heroes look closely (DC 13 Perception) they notice the attackers are human farmers disguised as tieflings.
After the confrontation, the disguised farmers confess they were hired by Xalvador. The locksmith told them that a group of bullies was sleeping outside his house and he wanted them out. When Xalvador is cornered to explain, he says that he paid the farmers to impersonate tieflings so the rest of the town would believe him about the tiefling organization. He apologizes for what he did but in his defense, he says that he paid both parties, and no one (hopefully) was harmed.
Chaotic good half-elf (age 26)
Xalvador has short, wavy hair and blue eyes. He has rough pink skin and has a fat build. However, he has an oval, attractive face with two piercings on his lower lip.
Manner. Paranoid stare. Looks behind him as a precaution every few seconds.
3. The Ill Horse
This building belongs to Tanye, a couch woman. She is very sad because one of her horses is ill. She asked the horse master to check on the horse. He did what he could and failed. She doesn’t know what to do anymore. She asks the heroes for their help in a last attempt to save the poor equine.
If the heroes accept to take a look at the horse, she starts crying with joy and rushes home for something to pay them. The horse has a grave infection on one of its hind legs. A fever has taken over. If the heroes wish to help the horse, a lesser restoration spell heals it.
Tanye gives the heroes an ornate soapstone tiara, in poor condition (20gp). She apologizes and says that is everything she can give them.
Chaotic neutral human (age 34)
Tanye has short, braided hair, and brown eyes. She has a soft, ordinary face. She is missing her left pinky finger. She loves animals and spends more time with her horses than with people.
Manner. She always ends her sentences in whispers.
4. The Outlaw
Glasha is an orc that abandoned her tribe. People at Cobb Crossing welcomed her with open arms when she said she wanted a fresh start. Her brewing skills made her friends quickly and she settled and opened her tavern a couple of months ago.
However, Glasha did commit a crime in the past. A few months before she reached Cobb Crossing, a couple of travelers who were just attacked by orcs bumped into her on the road. Thinking she was there to finish the job, they didn’t leave her any choice but to defend herself. The heat of combat didn’t allow her to hold her blows and she killed both men. Unluckily for her, there were witnesses of what happened.
The heroes meet Glasha at her tavern and share drinks with her. However, right when Glasha goes to the back of the store for another keg of ale, the tavern’s doors open and four armored men (guards) enter. They identify themselves as members of the guard and demand the orc living here to show herself. They have an order to arrest such orc. The heroes can lie or even fight the guards if they want. But if the heroes allow the men to explain themselves, they tell the story of the men killed on the road. The witnesses helped them make a drawing of the orc in question and many people talk about an orc with good brewing skills in here. The drawing does look like Glasha, but with more masculine features.
Glasha takes a minute to return. If a confrontation hasn’t ensued, Glasha confirms what the guards said and accepts her fate. The guards tell Glasha that her trial is in two weeks, she is to be arrested if she isn’t capable to pay her bail of 200 gold pieces. She says she doesn’t have the money and extends her arms. Glasha looks at the floor to hide her tears but the sound of them falling betrays her.
If the heroes decide to help Glasha and pay her bail, she gives them free ale for the rest of their stay at Cobb Crossing. She tells them she knew this day would come and that she has been planning her defense in court since the day that happened. The heroes’ involvement with Glasha’s trial and its outcome or the consequences of fighting the guards are not within the scope of this module and left to the DM’s discretion.
Lawful good orc (age 23)
Glasha is quite a celebrity in Cobb Crossing. She left her orc tribe at a young age. She thought the ways of the tribe would end her life sooner than later. She traveled for months until she found a peaceful small town miles away from her homeland. She has a gift for brewing and she makes the best ale around, including neighbor towns. Her tavern is popular.
She has a bald head and gray eyes. She has smooth gray skin. Her face is square and she has a muscular build. Her face has several piercings across her face but the one on her nose stands out.
Manner. She barely blinks. Her stare is intimidating and penetrating even when she’s calm and friendly.
5. Bad Weed
This part of the village is dominated by an apple orchard. The Ritters family is popular in Cobb Crossing for the juicy red apples their orchard gives. A member of their family knows a bit of druidic magic and this has always boosted their harvests’ quality. However, they are having trouble with bad weed now. Something went wrong the last time they attempted the ritual to make their crops larger.
Evil weed monsters roam their orchard now and Rosa Ritters, the one responsible, offers 100 gold pieces to the heroes if they can get rid of the plant monsters. Ten violent fungi took over the orchard.
Neutral human (age 31)
Rosa has cropped, curled, black hair. She has rough, dirty, brown skin. She is courageous, to a fault. But she has a good heart. She learned a bit of druidic magic thanks to a book her family has always had.
Manner. She chews a twig at all times.
6. Secret Vigilante
Arabella is a fine leatherworker. She likes her life and her job. However, she is tired of injustices and evil things happening in the world she lives in. She is aware that she is no adventurer, but she likes to think she can at least make a small difference in Cobb Crossing and make it a better place. A few nights a week, she goes out at night dressed as a protector of the weak, a vigilante. Since she was little, she has admired Commander Cobb and his exploits. She calls herself “Cobb Justice”.
When she learns that a group of heroes is in town, she attempts to meet them in person. She doesn’t hide her excitement to be with them besides saying that she is a simple leatherworker. However, after a few minutes, her impatience gets the best of her and she tells them who she is at night.
She tells them that she usually saves cats or stray sheep. On rare occasions, she has beaten a bully to protect the weak. But this time, provided they agree to help her, she wants to get rid of the bandits on the road. She explains that a group of criminals has been robbing travelers but she cannot face them alone. If the heroes agree, she screams with joy and asks them to meet her at midnight.
Arabella looks ridiculous. She wears a cloak with several colors and her fancy spectacles. Feathers sprout from her head and two lines of mud decorate her cheeks. Lastly, a double leather belt with daggers draws an “X” on her chest. Pieces of leather armor can be seen under her heroic garments. Her story is true though, right after sunset, a group of bandits takes over the road and terrorize travelers.
Arabella (scout) maintains her distance and lets the heroes handle melee combat. There are four bandits and one thug on the road. They flee if three or more of them drop to 0 hit points. There are 125 gold pieces and a few other articles like shovels and ropes that belong to the people they robbed among their things. Arabella wants to deliver everything to the authorities. She won’t keep any of it, and she tries to convince the heroes to share her take on this. If the heroes refuse, she gets angry and leaves. She doesn’t speak to the heroes anymore but doesn’t rat them out.
Lawful neutral human (age 27)
Arabella has rugged, sunburned golden skin. She has a tall and athletic build. She always smells of leather and her hands and fingers are usually stained due to her job. She wears fancy spectacles and believes in destiny.
Manner. She sporadically squints.
7. The Egg
This part of town has a small market between the few buildings. Stands with all sorts of vegetables and other farm edibles along with itinerant merchants fill the small square. One of them is named Kimer. This merchant has a particular object to sell when the heroes meet him at his cart. Kimer has many wares and his prices are fair but one of his trinkets stands out. A large gray and blue egg.
He claims it is the egg of a dragon. He cannot disclose any information on how he got it, but if the heroes are interested, Kimer says they should be the ones to keep it. Any other owner wouldn’t have the skill to keep and care for it, he insists. If one of the heroes has read or learned about eggs before (DC 16 Nature), they notice it isn’t a dragon’s egg, but a cockatrice’s. If the heroes confront him about this, he denies anything they say about the egg and tells them to leave if they won’t buy anything.
If the heroes agree, Kimer asks them for 300 gold pieces and tells them they won’t regret it. The merchant leaves town and never returns. He doesn’t even live in Cobb Crossing. A day after the heroes buy the egg, the first time they step outside with it, they are attacked by the egg’s parents. A pair of cockatrices attack them unless they leave the egg and flee. The male flees if it’s reduced to half its hit points. The mother won’t leave until she is gotten her egg back or dies trying.
Chaotic evil human (age 35)
Kimer is a merchant. He is charismatic and he knows how to get his message across. He has a way to convince people into buying his stuff. He has pockmarked skin, and he has long braided hair.
Manner. He has a slight lisp.
8. The Duel
Angmar the dwarf lives in this house. He is in a dire dilemma. He lost a bet and couldn’t pay. He agreed to be Frank’s buffoon after he lost against him. And now, besides feeding him, his next task in a long list to pay his debt is to challenge one of the heroes to a fistfight. Angmar must do his best to make one of the adventurers accept if he is to pay part of his debt. Frank watches from Angmar’s window to verify that he fights.
Angmar swears, spits, and insults to provoke the heroes. If that doesn’t work, he throws a rock or something near them. He tells them he could beat each one of them in single-handed combat in a second. If one of them agrees, Angmar (thug) screams, rips his shirt, and then raises his fists in a menacing position.
The dwarf says it is a battle for honor regardless of the outcome. If he wins, he helps the loser stand on his feet and says it was a good fight. If he loses, he accepts his defeat honorably and bids them farewell. Either way, the dwarf accomplished his goal and paid a bit of his debt.
Chaotic neutral dwarf (age 117)
Angmar has short, blond hair. He stands 4’2’’ tall and has a muscular build. He has an oval cute face and a gigantic beard. He has four piercings on his right ear and three on his left.
Manner. He gestures profusely during a conversation.
9. Rat Problem
This is the house of the town’s ratcatcher. Gretiem’s hobbies and experiments have gotten out of hand. She has a weakness for all the rats she catches. She lures them out, traps them, and does her job so well that no one says a thing. What no one knows is that she keeps the rats. She has never killed any of them.
Gretiem’s home is severely infested. If the heroes approach this home, they do so right at the boiling point of the ratcatcher’s dilemma. When the door opens, a middle-aged woman is trampled and thrown to the ground by a swarm of rats. The sea of rodents seems to be never-ending. Two swarms of rats come out of the house and attack the heroes. Gretiem lies on the ground screaming for her rats. Two rounds after this, a dire rat emerges from the house.
The ratcatcher calls the giant rodent Fangy and tells it to run, to run for its life and live! The rat doesn’t listen and attacks. She cries in pain if the heroes kill the beast. She has no bite marks or injuries. The rats were indeed her friends and pets.
Neutral good human (age 41)
Gretiem is a ratcatcher. She has cropped, wavy, auburn hair, and gray eyes. Her face is somewhat repulsive. She smells like rain and she sees insults as an art.
Manner. Fidgets occasionally.
10. A Man’s Ambitions
If the heroes visit the military outpost on top of the hill, they are received by Sergeant Geoffrey’s men. They were ordered by the sergeant to welcome the heroes and ask them to step inside for a reunion with him. Once inside, Sgt. Geoffrey shares a meal with the adventurers.
He explains to them the current situation regarding his station. He tells them about the newly appointed major, Lord Castilla, and how he will be relocated somewhere else. He continues by saying that at the beginning the news startled him and stressed him. He rejected change and reacted negatively. But he has made peace with life and himself and welcomes this change now. However, he confesses to the heroes that in his moments of darkness he did something that, today, he regrets.
He went to see a witch in the woods to ask her to kill Lord Castilla somehow. The witch agreed to help him for a price, but she wouldn’t do it alone. She provided Geoffrey with a small puppet. She gave him instructions to bathe it in blood, burn it, and some other paraphernalia, but in the end, he couldn’t do it. He tells the heroes that he couldn’t go on with the evil ritual and taint his soul.
He decided to keep the doll safe, away from the wrong hands. And he stored it at home, in the basement. But the day after, the doll turned into a monster, a demon from hell. Sgt. Geoffrey locked the thing in the basement when he heard the grunts and growls and hasn’t entered since. He pays the heroes 300 gold pieces if they can kill it and get rid of it. He specifies that the high pay is because he trusts he buys their silence with it too. He promises never to deal with dark magic again.
If the heroes accept, they must descend to the basement and fight a dretch demon.
Chaotic good human (age 53)
The sergeant has short, brown hair. He has an athletic build. His face is edgy and awful, with a long, braided beard. He has a scar on his neck and another one on his nose.
Manner. He speaks slowly and often sighs.