Shattered Star #24: Realm of Madness

At the end of last session, we left the party after they decided to turn back from exploring the strange, noisome lake below the lair of Arlend Hyve.

The Shattered Star


The party returned to the rain-drenched streets and briefly debated what to do next. They quickly decided—low as they were on healing—that they should return to their ship to rest and recuperate. As they trudged back through the rain, the ground began to shake and the confused cacophony of falling stone and snapping timbers came from what had once been the church on Elm Way. Quickly they dashed back to the site to see the building collapse seemingly destroyed from within.

Realising they were in no shape to fight the monster—which was undoubtably responsible for the destruction—they did not interfere with the building’s collapse and instead retreated to brief Mayor Heggry on their progress and recent events.

Mayor Heggry urged them to continue their efforts to destroy the creature and they promised to do so…after they rested.

The night passed without notable incident, but in the morning Narfu observed the rain seemed slightly more intense. Certainly the omni-present rain clouds hung lower over Kaport Bay’s sagging, huddled rooftops. Sensing this might mean something the party hurried through the rain to the ominous, squat bulk of the town’s asylum.

Discovering the front door open, they entered. Immediately, three trussed up inmates on the floor started wailing and screaming. As the party tried to communicate with the obviously mad men four guards burst forth from deeper into the complex. What happened next was predictable, bloody and brief. However, the party noticed each of the guards had an identical scar on their heads. Grooble and Nok—particularly—seemed keen to know what this meant and tried to cut into the skulls of the men to learn more. Zaniess wondered aloud why the two folk least skilled in healing would try such a thing, but no one listened. They learned nothing.

After this bloody debacle, the party searched the rest of the above ground portions of the asylum. It quickly became apparent the inmates had escaped—or been released—and the party had to deal with—or avoid—several other groups of inmates and guards. After an hour or so of sneaking about the upper floor, it became apparent Keeper Crove was probably in the cellar.

However, each set of stairs leading to the cellar was guarded by a chained up maniac who screamed loudly when the party approached. This alerted yet more maniacs and guards below, but the party quickly dealt with them.

A set of double doors led to a torture chamber. A small blue-skinned dwarf was within—hard at work flaying another inmate. Two other inmates hung from chains nearby. The dwarf—quickly identified as a derro—dropped a sound burst on the party before releasing one of the maniacs. However, the party were numerous and the derro and his insane minions were quickly defeated.

Further explorations uncovered the large size of the cellars below the asylum. Eventually, however, the party discovered a plush office…



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Creighton is the publisher at Raging Swan Press and the designer of the award winning adventure Madness at Gardmore Abbey. He has designed many critically acclaimed modules such as Retribution and Shadowed Keep on the Borderlands and worked with Wizards of the Coast, Paizo, Expeditious Retreat Press, Rite Publishing and Kobold Press.

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