720 The Ephemeral Spirits Cult

In the sprawling metropolis of Eldoria, the kingdom’s capital, a clandestine organization known as the Ephemeral Spirits Cult has taken root. This enigmatic group is shroud­ed in secrecy, their intentions and beliefs obscured. The Ephemeral Spirits Cult is an esoteric gathering of indi­viduals united under a mysterious leader, known only as the High Priest. They believe in the transcendental pow­ers of the spirit realm, seeking to bridge the gap between the mortal world and the ethereal plane. Their doc­trine speaks of enlightenment and spiritual ascendance, achieved through mystical, ancient rituals.

Beneath the bustling streets of Eldoria, hidden away from the prying eyes, lies the secret sanctuary of the Ephemeral Spirits Cult. Accessible through a labyrin­thine network of ancient sewers, this dungeon is a place of great evil. At the heart of the sanctuary is the Room of Prayer, a sacred chamber where the cult’s signature ritu­al is performed. The High Priest burns rare pink orchids, harvested from a hidden grove. These flowers are said to be blessed by the spirits themselves, possessing other­worldly properties. As the orchids are placed upon the braziers and set aflame, they emit a thick, intoxicating smoke that fills the chamber. This smoke is believed to be a conduit to the spirit world, used during initiations to break the minds of otherwise reluctant neophytes. The inebriating effect of the smoke subdues them and makes them susceptible to the High Priest’s suggestions. Most subjects have joined the cult after this ritual.

Adventure Hook

Rescue. The daughter of a wealthy merchant, Anna, is missing. Her father, Ilaryo, believes that the culprits are Anna’s friends, as a few of them are connected with an obscure organization known as the Ephemeral Spirits Cult, based in the sewers. The characters must find the cult’s lair and rescue the abducted girl (4 XP, 450 gp).

Suspicion. Bailiff Olarg has tracked the devious orga­nization to a labyrinthine section of the city sewers. He has no evidence but believes that the cult is guilty of sev­eral abductions over the past few months. The bailiff of­fers the characters a reward for rooting out the cult and finding out if the missing people are connected to the cult. He provides a map and a list of fifteen missing peo­ple connected with the cultists (2 XP, 450 gp).

Level 3 Adventure

  • Danger. Unsafe. Check for a Random Event every 3 crawling rounds and after loud noises (4-in-6 chance).
  • Light. Some areas have braziers with permanent light spells. The undead denizens are dark-adapted.
  • The Smoke. The stench of burnt pink orchids smells like rotting corpses. It can be detected from anywhere in the dungeon. The smoke in the Room of Prayer causes a stronger effect when inhaled during the encounter there.
  • Secret Doors. Hidden passageways connect some ar­eas by finding the buttons to access them (DC 14 WIS).

 

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