Monday, January 19, 2015

Otum's Tower

Otum's Tower

The Tower is a two+ level tower on the outskirts of town.  It has played the role of a watchtower, storehouse, and gaol in the past.  Currently, it is occupied by a slightly eccentric extended family and their retainers, and is primarily used as an observatory.  The eponymous resident of the tower, Otum, is a seer and sage of some local renown, who has a mysterious method to his auguries.

Three-quarters of the tower interior is occupied by the tower structure, with the remaining space open from top to bottom, allowing light into the courtyard and through windows in the tower interior.

The interior of the tower architecture is dominated by a wide spiral staircase connecting from the ground floor to the battlements.   A second, smaller staircase descends to the family crypts underlying the tower.

1st level:
The Tower gate opens to a small courtyard with a small stable.  A pig pen sits under an overhang to the right, and the large oaken double doors providing access to the tower interior and the entrance hall is on the facing wall. Within the first floor are the a) kitchen/larder, b) barrack areas c) staff quarters, and d) access to the family crypts.

The tower is staffed by six men-at-arms (AC 7/12 (studded leather)/6HP, Light crossbow/Axe) and three household servants (non-com).

2nd level:
Hall, a) master bedroom and sitting room, b-d) family rooms, e) library

Otum's family resides on the second floor:

His son, Liam (Ftr 3, 14 HP, AC 5/14 (Chain), Greatsword (1d10)), has no interest in in his father's pursuits, and appears outwardly to be a bit of a lout. However, no matter his apparent disinterest, he is loyal to his father. He tolerates visitors and solicitors to the Tower, knowing that Otum provides the family livelihood, but is quietly observant and wary of potential thieves and grifters. (family bankbox hidden behind stones in fireplace (290 GP, gems worth 110, 80, 13, 10, 9 GP)

Liam brusquely runs the household with his wife, Sayla. She is somewhat more solicitous to visitors, and is often found in the courtyard, entrance hall, or kitchen, puttering about, helping the staff or attempting to dissuade Ruprect (below) from preparing more 'adventurous' dishes for guests.

Two daughters (Imelda and Esmerelda) mostly hang about and roll their eyes. Imelda (the more gothy of the two) keeps exotic pets on the roof of the tower (see below).  Esmerelda mostly borrows her grandfather's spyglass (300 GP) and keeps watch for trade caravans and barges, hoping that they might bring new and interesting shoes from the capital.

Otum's nephew, Hoult, is heir to Otum's practice, and acts as his assistant and acolyte. If Otum is not around, Hoult is anxious to prove his worth.  His identify skill is 66%, but he has not been made privy to Otum's augury methods at this point. He makes the nightly star observations, since Otum's sight is beginning to fade.  Hoult also keeps up the records, including a book of all objects identified with brief notes on distinguishing characteristics (this volume is hidden under Hoult's mattress).

Otum's brother-in-law Ruprect (Ftr 2, 10 HP, AC 6/13 (Ring), +1 Short sword (1d6+1, grants bearer darkvision when drawn)) fancies himself a chef, and is usually found in the kitchen or in the gardens surrounding the Tower. Ruprect is happy to prepare experimental dishes for guests (25% unpalatable, 70% passable, 5% best thing you've ever tasted). (if cooking, AC 9/10, cleaver 1d4+1)

The library (e) contains approximately 100 volumes, a veritable treasure trove, for those who can read.  Otum keeps many reference volumes here, as resources to assist in his identification practice and astronomical observations.  2d12 of the volumes are worth approximately 50 GP apiece to the right buyer, and 1d10 are worth 100 GP.  1d4 volumes are very rare to unique, and damage or loss will cause the family to pursue the vandal, or put a reward out for their capture and return of the volume.

3rd level:
The top of the tower is occupied by battlements, Otum's observatory, and a coop.

Otum lives in the observatory, a wooden structure on the tower's top level. The observatory has an iris opening in its roof. Otum and Hoult will ascend through the iris in a basket on a scissor-lift to make their observations and fore-tellings.

Otum is a sage, providing information at the cost of GP or a task.  He will identify a magic item or other unknown items for a minimum fee of 200 GP. Under the effects of the pond gas (Cavern, below), he can perform Augury as per the spell.  He will also know 1d3 rumors of an area of interest to the PCs (each 66% chance true).

A small coop on the rooftop houses Imelda's prized show and racing flying snakes (4) (HD 1, AC 4/15, Atk: bite 1d3+ poison (save or paralysis 1d4 hours), Move 6 (fly 20) Save 17; CL/XP 2/30; Special: Poison).  Otum keeps his personal treasure in a locked box (poison needle save or 2d12 dmg) under the floor of the coop (784 GP, 605 SP, gems worth 60, 11, 7, 6 GP, silver dagger (100 GP)).

Four rooms are carved into the bedrock basement of the tower, housing ossuaries and sarcophagi of deceased family members.  A family ghost (Great-aunt Tilda, or perhaps Cousin Rolf, Otum has forgotten) haunts the crypts (25% chance of encounter per room entered).  It is benign to any family members, following and murmuring, but will attack intruders (HD 3; AC 5/14; Atk: 1hp + Con drain; Move 9; Save 14; AL L; CL/XP 6/400; Special: all must save vs fear on 1st contact.  Temporary (1 week) drain of 1d4 pts Con per hit; incorporeal - hit only by magic weapons or spell effects. Dispelled for 2d4 days upon reaching 0 HP).

A secret door is hidden under the flagstones of the southeast crypt room...

A cavern system underlies the crypts.  It was discovered during crypt excavation, explored, and sealed up below a secret door as a bolt-hole or secret place.  An inundated tunnel extends southwest from the caverns, but no one has successfully penetrated past it to determine if it exits.  One of Otum's uncles lost his life attempting to explore past the water.  A lifeline he was tied to went taught, and assistants in the cavern were unable to pull him back.  It is not clear if he was caught in a cave-in, or something living got hold of him.  In any case, no one else has attempted to find out.

In a side room of the caverns lies a subterranean pond.  Strange gasses periodically bubble up from the pond, and will affect anyone in the room:

Pond Effects: (roll 1d6, adjust for CON bonus, if applicable)
1. Asphyxiation (1d4 HP)
2. Unconscious (1d4 rounds)
3. Nausea (1d4 rounds)
4. Hallucination (see subtable) (1d4 rounds)
5. Augury (per spell)
6+. No Effect

1. you ever just think about how weird fingers are?
3. Catatonic
4. Screams, "Heretic!" and attacks PC/NPC to immediate left
5. "Is it hot in here? I think its hot in here. Do you think it's hot in here..." (removes all armor and clothing)
6. Double vision, everything tinged blue. (-2 to hits, -4 for missile fire)

Otum has become generally unaffected by the deleterious effects of the pond, using it as a catalyst for his visions and far-seeing.

In the farthest corner of the cavern lives (exists?) a large pink ooze (4HD, AC 7/12, atk 2-16 acid x 2 rounds (destroys armor/weapons in 1 rd), Move 1,Special: cold does 2x dmg, heat/fire heals). The family knows of it, but avoids it, knowing that it is slow and generally passive, although they do feed it the occasional pig...

(ooze thanks to Richard LeBlanc)

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