This week’s map started out as a doodle on a post-it note and a player getting ahead of himself and rolling to detect secret doors instead of letting me do it. Since he succeeded so handily, I pulled out the doodle as a small sidequest. And a convenient money-burner for the party.
Ochre Rock is on the shore of the lake containing the Lizard Cairn that I posted last month. It is named because of it’s distinct colouration, which also drew the attention of some ancient and evil elves many years ago.
The entrance to Ochre Rock is a secret door. Being just another boulder in the wilderness, it is unlikely that it will be found accidentally – it is best used as a destination for a randomly discovered treasure map at some point in a game. Underneath the rock are challenges, as well as hefty rewards.
Upon opening the secret door, the dirt and stone tunnel leading under the rock looks muddy and potentially unsafe. However there is also light shining from ahead and below. Half way down into the tomb under Ochre Rock is a small shrine with a candle that never burns out. If extinguished, it will relight itself after d4 days. The shrine is surrounded by a pair of tapestries that describe in ancient elvish that whoever attends a solitary vigil here and makes a sacrifice of the equivalent of 1,500 gp per character level will gain great wisdom. In game terms, it requires that a person enter the area beneath the rock alone, deal with the shadows who dwell here without help, and then keep a 12 hour vigil watching the candle burn while sacrificing the indicated value of incenses and perfumes and other overpriced sacrifices in exchange for gaining 1 permanent point of Wisdom (to a maximum of 18 Wisdom – if the character already has 18 Wisdom, then roll a d6 to determine what stat is increased instead 1 – STR, 2 – INT, 3 – DEX, 4 – CON, 5 – CHA, 6 – CHA.)
The tunnels are always inhabited by a pair of shadows, +1 shadow for every 2 character levels a solitary entrant has above level 3. Once slain, they will not reform until 1d4 days later.
However, at the bottom of the tomb is another monster waiting on his visitors. A sealed elven sarcophagus holds a Wight, an amulet of protection from iron (reduces the damage of any non-magical metal weapon attacks against the wearer by 1) and 11,000 silver pieces