When I first set foot in the Valley of the Red Apes it was seeking out the Ziggurat of Rhissel the Morning Lord. However it is a good thing we set up a base of operations nearby. We got word from back home that the Hubert the Elder, the sage we had hired to get background information on the region, had made some other interesting discoveries in the libraries, and he sent along a series of letters describing the hiding places of Jen “the Rose” – one of which was almost certainly nearby. Jen “the Rose” was a human adventurer during the last great war, a freebooter who exploited the chaos to make her fortune and acquire great interesting treasures from the various worlds of the Kale – worlds that are difficult if not impossible to find now. This particular lead was to a hall of some mystical power (and possibly treasure) that she had built or found (the stories are vague and contradictory – one even indicates that the hall was brought here from another world). This exploration was deemed less dangerous than our main focus towards the Ziggurat, and thus we sent four of our companions of levels 5-6 to investigate.
The area around Jen’s Hall is rough hills on the edge of heavy jungle forest. The entrance to the hall is a cave cut into the side of a mountain, about a hundred feet above the floor of the Valley of the Red Apes. Getting here, just like anywhere in the valley, probably involves at least one encounter with the red apes (using the stats for Albino Apes). Around the actual entrance to the caves that contain the hall are the signs of intelligent workmanship – or at least something approximating intelligence. There are skulls stacked on each side of the entrance and blood and entrails smeared about the area. Someone with the right knowledge or background may even note that the entrails have been spread out in a specific blasphemous design, on associated with foul creatures from beyond the edges of this world.
Albino Apes are used to represent the Red Apes of their namesake valley. Ogres and Ogre Magi are Apes that have been perverted by the otherworldly forces that have come through to the Hall since it was first placed here. Ogre Magi are those apes that are actually possessed by foul entities from other worlds, while Ogres are their children and those they have invested with magical powers by feeding them their blood. Not all apes accepted the curse of these foul beasts however, and some Shadows of their former selves still wander.
1 in 6, check every turn – Each encounter except the Albino Apes can only occur once, ignore them if they are indicated again.
- d4+1 Albino Apes (the Red Apes of the valley) ( AC: 6, Mv: 120 (40), HD: 4, Att: 2, Dmg: 1d4/1d4, Sv: F2, M: 7 )
- d4 Shadows ( AC: 7, Mv: 90 (30), HD: 2+2, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d4 + Strength Drain, Sv: F2, M: 12, Special: Magic Weapons to hit )
- d3 Ogre Magi ( AC: 4, Mv: 90 (30), Fly: 150 (50), HD: 5+2, hp: 18, 25, 30, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d12, Sv: M5, M: 9, Special: Fly 12 turns; At Will: darkness 10′ r., invisibility, polymorph self, 1/Day: charm person, gaseous form, sleep, 8d6 cone of cold; Regenerate 1 hp / round )
- d4 Ogres ( AC: 5, Mv: 90 (30), HD: 4+1, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d10, Sv: F4, M: 10 )
1 – Into the Depths
Down the natural stone stairs from the cave entrance the cave becomes wider and taller, with roughly 20 foot ceilings. Debris from the valley and a significant amount of ape droppings litters the floor. The smell of something cooking comes from the cave to the south, along with a slight glimmer of firelight.
2 – Ogrish Delights
Four ogres ( AC: 5, Mv: 90 (30), HD: 4+1, hp: 21, 19, 29, 17, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d10, Sv: F4, M: 10 ) are cooking up a pair of jungle halflings. A third hangs from his intestines wrapped around a hook on the wall, semi-conscious and slowly bleeding out. Scattered about the fire pit (and really only noticeable if the the fire is put out) are a collection of five 150 gp rubies.
The secret door to area 6 is very difficult to find from this side – the fact that a halfling is dangling by his entrails off the door also makes it less likely to be inspected closely.
3 – Food Storage
The corpses of a pair of red apes are stuffed into the back of this space, slowly rotting. The mutant apes and their kin would rather eat just about anything else than the stringy meat of their own kind. The red apes are more than just rotten, they have become infested with rot grubs ( AC: 9, Mv: 10 (2), HD: 1 hp, Attack: special – burrow. Fire burns them out, but deals 1d6 damage to the host ). A total of 17 of the foul little grubs infest the corpses.
4 – Someone’s Poisoned the Watering Hole!
Approaching this cave the characters will be able to hear water dripping into a pool. The far end of the cave is depressed and filled with clear, cold water. However the water bears the taint of other worlds where it was originally drawn from, and any creature with 1-3 natural Hit Dice drinking from it (including all humans and demi-humans, regardless of level) must save versus poison after ten minutes or begin taking damage at a rate of 1d12+1 hit points per round until either remove curse or neutralize poison is administered. Creatures with 4 natural Hit Dice or more must instead save versus spells or slip into a coma for 1d6 days. They must make a saving throw versus poison each day or die. Survivors awaken changed and twisted… Like the ogrish albino apes.
5 – Guards
Three Ogre Magi ( AC: 4, Mv: 90 (30), Fly: 150 (50), HD: 5+2, hp: 18, 25, 30, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d12, Sv: M5, M: 9, Special: Fly 12 turns; At Will: darkness 10′ r., invisibility, polymorph self, 1/Day: charm person, gaseous form, sleep, 8d6 cone of cold; Regenerate 1 hp / round ) live in the tight quarters of this cave, guarding the sanctum of Jen the Rose. They will initiate combat with charms before going invisible and scattering around the area to make the battle as awkward as possible.
6 – The Favoured & Escape Route
Once just another red ape, the favoured companion of Jen the Rose is kept in bondage here. A powerful Ogre Magi in his own right ( AC: 4, Mv: 90 (30), Fly: 150 (50), HD: 5+2, hp: 38, Att: 1, Dmg: 1d12, Sv: M5, M: 9, Special: Fly 12 turns; At Will: darkness 10′ r., invisibility, polymorph self, 1/Day: charm person, gaseous form, sleep, 8d6 cone of cold; Regenerate 1 hp / round ), he cannot leave this chamber because he is bound in cursed cold iron chains. He bears the many brands and injuries of his love for the creature that keeps him here, and if she is threatened, he will fight to the death for her.
The bed to which he is chained is actually a massive locked chest, the key for which is held by Jen the Rose. Within the chest are a collection of six silver potion bottles (worth 50 gp each without the potions within them) sitting atop 11,000 gp and a collection of gems of all sorts (19 gems totaling in value at 9,550 gp). The potions are:
- Potion of Mischief (grants the drinker the thief skills of a thief of level 1d6, or increases the effective level of a thief by 1d6 for all skills for the duration)
- Potion of Battle (grants the drinker a +1 bonus to AC, attack rolls and missile and melee weapon damage rolls)
- Potion of Revival (removes paralysis and grants immunity to sleep for 24 hours)
- Angel’s Tears (treat as holy water with four times the potency)
- Draught of Otherworldly Voices (treat as if the drinker had cast Contact Other Plane – roll d6+2 to determine the number of questions the caster must ask)
- Delusion (drinker believes it to be a potion of healing)
7 – The Hall of Jen the Rose
This hall seems radically out of place within these caves. Although the floor is as messy and debris-strewn as the rest of the caves, the walls are of a strange almost translucent green stone, and heavy black pillars support the ceiling 60 feet overhead.
Claiming to be Jen the Rose, this foul (but beautiful) Succubus ( AC: 0, HD: 6, hp: 35, Mv: 120 (40), Fly: 180 (60), Att: 2 claws or bow +2, Dmg: 1d3/1d3 or 1d6+2, Sv: F6, M: 7, Special: magic weapons to hit; kiss drains a level; at will spells: charm person, clairaudience, ESP, ethereal form, shape change, suggestion; Gate: 65% success – Balor ) wears a pair of golden bracers with platinum inlay (1,500 gp each), and bears a short bow and a small quiver of 5 arrows +2. She wears the key to the chest in area 6 and the crates in area 9 around her neck.
If seriously threatened, she will attempt to escape via area 6, leaving her playmate as rear-guard. (Obviously, if the party arrived via area 6, she’ll try to escape via area 5).
8 – Vile Mess
The bodies of three red ape ogres, twisted and seemingly torn apart from within, lie on the floor of this cave. The succubus is keeping them here to feed the Otyugh in area 9 should she have nothing else for him.
9 – The Trash Heap
The succubus’ Otyugh ( AC:3 HD:7, hp:39, Mv:60 (20), Att:3, Dmg:1d8/1d8/1d4+1, Sv:F7, M:10, Special: bitten victims save vs poison or disease deals d3 dmg / day ) lives in the reeking hole in the depths of the caves. In the trash heap where it lives (composed mostly of rotten flesh and its own excrement) are many of the treasures of the succubus that she keeps here where she knows they are safe since she can command the otyugh to let her through to them. In the mess are four small cases containing:
- 80,000 sp (divided between two cases)
- 10,000 gp
- Potion of Poison, Scroll of Ward vs Lycanthropes & 4 Gems (100 gp each)
Coming soon to Dyson’s Dodecahedron: A map of the Valley of the Red Apes to go with these adventures!