712 Cursed Gems of Ramlaat – Lv2 Shadowdark Adventure

The bane of mages, they call them. The seven gemstones contain a figment of the Pillager’s rage. They promise power but at an unattainable, ruinous cost…

Eroded Inscription

In the ancient, whispered annals of the Sha­dowdark, the Cursed Gems of Ramlaat hold a notorious place. Legend tells that Ramlaat, a deity shrouded in mystery and darkness, once walked the realms of mortals. Displeased with the burgeoning arrogance of human sorcerers, Ramlaat sought to teach them a lesson in humility and fear. The deity forged seven gems, each imbued with a fragment of Ramlaat’s shadowy essence. These gems were gifts to the sorcerers, veiled in benevolence but cursed with in­sidious, corrupting power. Over time, the sorcerers were driven mad, their realms collapsing into chaos and ruin.

Resting Place

Beneath the murky waters of the Fevermist Swamp lies the final resting place of these accursed relics. It was once a grand temple dedicated to Ramlaat but now stands dilapidated, its glory lost to time and neglect. It is a twisted labyrinth, its chambers connected by narrow, treacherous passages. What makes it uniquely perilous are the lava canals that snake through its chambers. These molten rivers emit a hellish, eerie glow.

At the heart of the dungeon lies the Sanctum of Fire, a vast chamber dominated by a deep lava pond. In a stone pedestal among the lava rests a gilded goblet, eternal­ly wreathed in ghostly flames. The cursed goblet is said to be as old as Ramlaat itself. It cradles the seven gems, their malevolent aura palpable even from a distance. Many have sought Ramlaat’s favor in the past by attempt­ing to wield the gem’s power. Alas, they lost their sanity and identity and became slaves of the dark deity.

Adventure Hooks

  • Seeking the Artifacts. The characters hear of great treasures hidden in the depths of Fevermist Swamp. Ad­venturers brave or foolish enough to seek the Cursed Gems of Ramlaat must not only navigate the dungeon and its fiery hazards but also contend with the curse it­self. There are rumors of a ritual to purify the gems, in­volving an ancient incantation. Successfully lifting the curse could yield immense power, or perhaps, an audi­ence with the shadowy deity Ramlaat (0 XP).

Ramlaat’s Curse

The curse of the gems is multifaceted. Those who gaze upon them feel an overwhelming sense of dread and despair. Touching a gem directly results in a soul-binding curse, linking the victim to Ramlaat’s shadowy realm. This connection drains the life force of the afflicted, slowly transforming them into wraith-like beings, forever bound to guard the Sanctum of Fire.

Level 2 Adventure

  • Danger. Risky. Check for a Random Event every 2 crawling rounds and after loud noises (3-in-6 chance).
  • Light. Areas with lava are dimly lit; the rest are in pitch darkness. The denizens are dark-adapted.
  • Lava. The 10-foot-deep ponds and canals deal 3d6 damage upon direct contact. It is too thick to sink in it.
  • Hidden Paths. Observant characters notice debris hiding broken paths between chambers (DC 14 WIS).
1 A sudden collapse in the dungeon corridor reveals a hidden chamber filled with ancient, cryptic murals portraying Ramlaat.
2 The party encounters two shadows, tormented souls bound to protect the gems. They utter cryptic warnings.
3 Lava from the canals unexpectedly erupts. It floods the nearest chamber for 3 crawling rounds. This forces the adventurers to find an alternate path across or to find a way to walk or cross over the dense lava and hope for the best.
4 In the dim light, the adventurers find a weathered tome, its pages containing forbidden knowledge about the elusive Ramlaat.
5 A ghostly melody echoes through the halls, luring the characters towards four skeletons readying an ambush.
6 The adventurers stumble upon an ancient ritual circle, pulsing with dark energy and remnants of a forgotten ceremony. A wizard knows that it has the power to summon the rage and raw power of the orcish deity Ramlaat but the incantation is unknown.

1. Cave Under the Swamp

The dungeon entrance is found under the ominous trunks of two leafless elms. The opening slants down into a slithering tunnel that leads to area 1.

The cavern walls, awash in an ominous glow, cradle rivers of molten lava that snake across the floor. The bleached bones of unknown creatures lie scattered throughout, a stark foreshadowing of perilous fauna.

  • The Arachnid. A giant spider inhabits the dark ceil­ing of this chamber. It has killed many creatures; their bones litter the southern end of this chamber.
  • The Bones (1 XP). A healer who inspects the re­mains learns that half of them belonged to humanoids and finds an intricately-carved gold bracelet (20 gp).

2. The Dilapidated Chamber

Time and neglect have left their mark on the crum­bling, fractured walls. By the north wall lies a fore­boding lava pond fed by the flow of a fiery canal.

  • The Vases. The two gilded containers that flank the pond are filled with treated coal dust. If it comes in con­tact with a spark, it ignites and causes a fiery explosion that deals 4d6 damage within 20 feet (DC 15 DEX).
  • A swarm of scarabs emerges from count­less cracks and orifices on the walls. The ravenous in­sects disband and flee when attacked with fire.

3. Columbarium of Priests

In the shadowed recesses of the columbarium, three ancient clay urns stand solemnly on aged stone ped­estals. A faint, ethereal whisper seems to emanate from them, as if the spirits yearned for deliverance.

  • The Urns. Each clay urn contains the ashen remains of countless priests and acolytes of Ramlaat. Ramlaat’s sigil is etched on them. If perturbed, three shadows emerge from within and attack living creatures nearby.

4. Noxious Fungi

A pungent stench pervades this cavern where clus­ters of noxious fungi thrive in the damp crevices. The bio-luminescent caps emit a sickly green glow.

  • The Spores. Breathing the poisonous spores causes creatures to retch, vomit, and take 1d6 damage (DC 13 CON). Breathing them for over 1 hour causes death.
  • The Farmer. One mushroomfolk farmer sits by a corner. He cares for the fungal growth. His demeanor to­ward the characters may vary (Reaction check).

5. The Secret Vault

The once-secret vault is now connected to the spore-filled tunnel to area 4. It contains three stone coffers.

  • Treasure (3 XP). The coffers contain 250 gp, 1,700 sp, two potions of healing, one potion of vitality, a set of three ornate daggers (10 gp), and a silver ring (5 gp).

6. The Eastern Pond

When the characters arrive at this chamber, they experi­ence a vivid vision of the elusive deity Ramlaat:

In the flickering torchlight, the air shimmers, giving way to a vision of Ramlaat, the Pillager. Ramlaat stands amidst a battlefield, his hands dripping with the blood of his enemies. The vision fades swiftly, leaving an aura of raw power lingering in the air.

  • The Mosaic. A dust-ridden mural by the north wall can be cleaned to reveal the faded image of Ramlaat. The spell detect magic reveals an aura of illusion on it.

7. Hall of the Chosen Ones

Four standing sarcophagi adorned with ornate, myth-laden carvings, dominate this chamber. Each a silent sentinel, they exude an air of ancient valor and forgotten deeds, their secrets sealed in time.

The remains of four champions of Ramlaat are interred here. In life, they enacted despicable deeds and caused countless deaths. A scholar knows that through their ac­tions, they earned Ramlaat’s favor and stand by his side.

  • Treasure (4 XP). Within the easternmost enclosure, lies one of the chosen ones’ weapon, a +1 javelin.

8. The Broken Columbarium

A caved-in, collapsing chamber opens abruptly into a network of natural, winding tunnels, the rough walls echoing with the distant drips of unseen water.

The network of slithering tunnels slants downward and connects to the greater Shadowdark below; unchart­ed and dangerous. One of the nearest paths meets the southeast corner of area 9 and can be used to enter it.

9. Sanctum of Fire

The vast sanctum houses the cursed goblet on a dark pedestal floating over a menacing lava pond. Over­head, a fresco of the deity Ramlaat looms, infusing the air with a palpable sense of ancient, divine power.

  • The Cursed Gems. Touching the gems causes the person to die immediately and become a shadow in the service of Ramlaat (DC 17 CON). Hirelings or common­ers within 20 feet feel a terrible urge to touch the gems (DC 17 CHA). Handling or moving the cursed goblet is safe. The characters can remove the gems but they re­main a constant threat to the commonfolk in towns.
  • Cleansing. Accessing the raw power of the seven Gems of Ramlaat requires the characters to exorcise the deity’s presence from them. It can be done in the temple of a fair deity by a level-8 priest. Or the cursed gems can be bathed in the tears of a unicorn. Cleansing the gem­stones shall incur the wrath of the followers of Ramlaat. Alas, doing so is an adventure for another day.

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