When the curse of the Naga Reborn was revealed to be creeping through the regions around the Black Mire, sages and dwarves alike brought out the archives of the Ghost King – the warrior-lord who sacrificed even his name in order to end the curse last time.
The problem in replicating his feat, however, is that his ancient palace is lost, his bloodline destroyed, and his tomb lay ever empty.
But Helbret, apprentice to the local sage, is sure that he’s figured out where the Ghost King originally found the means to end the curse. Further, he believes that the Ghost King had only figured out part of the process which is why the cost he bore was so great. But who would believe Helbret, a mere apprentice? So he took the map and his ideas to his friends who had gone on to more interesting and less sagely pursuits – the party.
According to Helbret, the Vault of the Ghost King was recently being used by a clan of dwarven brewers to store their kegs. Not knowing how to activate the descending chamber, they sealed off the door to the stairs into the deeper areas and have happily piled the rest of the space up with now leaking barrels of stale brew. So Helbret figures the more charming of the party can convince the dwarves to let them hang out in their storage space for a bit, and he can activate the descending room to explore the lower chambers where he believes the ritual the Ghost King used is inscribed into the walls themselves.
The Vault of the Ghost King was originally drawn as part of the Mapvember challenge. The theme for the day was “Elevator” and I was reminded of the dungeons of old when elevator rooms were a fairly common “strange trap” to insert into a dungeon. The rooms would rise and descend on their own schedules, dropping characters into deeper areas than they intended to travel to and then refusing to rise again for hours or even days.
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