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LostSoul
Pie
(12/5/02 6:28:48 pm)
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What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
Here's something I wrote up to answer that question for my campaign. This explains why they killed Karlun and their future plans for setting up a secret base.

Warning: this is Vile. It also uses the CofC spell Consume Likeness (it lets you take the form of your victim, in a Vile ritual).

Hommlet cultist plot hook: Elmo, Rufus, and Burne are off investigating a recent hobgoblin raid on a nearby farming Hamlet. Desina is the name of Karlun's wife. Karlun meets Dunrat and falls to a Charm Person spell. Karlun offers his millhouse to the cult for the gold. The cult sets up and begins to buy equipment. Desina meets Chenashi and Dunrat. The two cultists are attracted to her. One night, Dunrat lets his urges get the better of him, and the cult takes Desina to the mill. Desina is tortured and raped. Karlun finds out; Dunrat casts another Charm Person spell (which Karlun saves against) and threatens to torture Karlun if he talks. Karlun sneaks out, tries to find Elmo, Rufus, or Burne, but can't. The cult hears about this, and during the next day/night, the cult forces him to watch what they do to Desina while torturing him; but, during an escape attempt, they end up killing Karlun.

Timeline for PCs:
Night one in Hommlet: The PCs see Karlun enter the inn, out of breath, looking for Elmo. Vesta tells him that they left to investigate a hobgoblin raid on a nearby hamlet. Karlun looks dejected and leaves (the PCs can do something here). Just after he leaves, Meridosen fakes some kind of illness or slips out somehow and goes to tell Dunrat. Dunrat grabs Karlun.
Day two: The cult tortures both Desina and Karlun. Their equipment is already gathered up; now they are just going to finish "playing" with their victims.
Night two: The cult finally kills both Desina and Karlun, and Chenashi, Toridan, and Grune slip out to the moathouse. Dunrat takes Karlun's body and casts Consume Likeness on it, while Vacra casts Change Self to appear like Desina.
Day three: Chenashi and Toridan arrive at the moathouse. Toridan is killed, and Chenashi beats feet back to Hommlet, leaving the equipment in the moathouse.
Night three: Chenashi arrives back in Hommlet. She tells Dunrat what's going on, then sleeps.
Day four: Chenashi casts Consume Likeness on Desina. Vacra heads back to the hidden cult HQ in the Kron Hills to warn them about the dragon.

To get the PCs to the moathouse if they foil Dunrat's plans too early, they can either question one of the cultists or, if they kill them all, they can find Dunrat's journal. If Dunrat, Chenashi, or Vacra escape a fight, they will flee to the moathouse and the PCs might be able to track them.

Dunrat's journal: full of mad ravings, a list of mining equipment, food for many people (much of it in live chickens, for the gnolls), etc., and a map that leads to the moathouse (use the Hommlet and Environs map in the module for this, with an "X" on the moathouse). Also contains the CofC spell Consume Likeness.

Notes on the personality "quirks" of the cult:
Dunrat is a sadist. He has a bunch of metal rings pierced into his flesh; he hangs by hooks placed into these (like the guy in the Cell) instead of sleeping. He is impotent. Dunrat often Charms Grune and Toridan and convinces them to "rape" Chenashi (she is willing, although she struggles in order to get a beating) while he watches.
Chenashi is a masochist. She flagellates herself, cuts herself, and lets Dunrat do the same. She's covered in piercings (except her face).
Toridan doesn't like these people he's fallen in with, but fears them more. He plans to escape if he can, but every so often Dunrat Charms him, so he forgets about it (for a while).
Grune is a homicidal maniac with large appetites.
Vacra is a demon and delights in anything vile or distasteful. She also dislikes Dunrat and wants to see him dead, but is taking her time. She wants Chenashi for her own.

Andorax
Orc
(12/9/02 7:29:19 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
I'm at a tossup here. On the one hand, this is pretty dark and heavy stuff. On the other hand, for those DMs who do use the "dark and heavy", it's very good material.

I'm wondering if we need two Best of the Boards...one standard, one reserved for "vile" content.

Thanks for reminding me, btw...most of the CoC spells behave a lot like Corrupt spells...I need to reread my CoC book and assign D&D levels to the spells within.

"Whadda ya mean, Orcs get levels too?!?"

Todariche
Pie
(12/9/02 9:56:05 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
Andorax: The work that you wish to take on has already been done for you. Page 284-288 of the CofC book details, in an appendix, information on 'Lovecraftian D&D campaigns'. In the middle of it is the list of the spells in the CofC book, complete with school, level, and other little things that need to be added or changed. :) Tis all good, really.


Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside the dog, it's too dark to read.

Siobharek 
Orc
(12/10/02 6:20:13 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
I see what you mean, Andorax. The work put into the personality descriptions is very good. Although one might certainly argue that the same work ought to be done (and posted!) for the rest of the adventure, I honestly think it would become too much for everyone to read - including myself. Used sparingly, I think it's great, but if Dunrat & Co are that bad, how depraved must then the masters of the Fanes be? And how gross their descriptions?

I think I'll add it to the BoVD post in 24-36 hours. It'll be an example and an inspiration to other BoVD fans (of whom I'd like to repeat I consider myself one). All who care about the inclusion of Vile in the BoB, please let your views be known before then :) .

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Thrommel
The DM
(12/10/02 6:48:49 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
One BoB thread = better. I think three is about as many sticky threads as I care to see on any one forum.

-Thrommel, Queen of the Demonthread Pits.

Siobharek 
Orc
(12/10/02 6:53:55 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
Oh, the point as I see it is not how many sticky threads we want - and you're right, BTW: 3 is definitely enough. IMHO the point is whether a detailed vilification of RttToEE is really desirable on a family-friendly board such as this.

Let me just add that I think I'll add a Parents' Advisory note on the BoVD post. Just in case.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Thrommel
The DM
(12/10/02 7:07:58 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
{I think I'll add a Parents' Advisory note on the BoVD post. Just in case. }

Good idea - especially if we are going to go beyond just 'swap in this BoVD spell' type advice.

I guess I personally don't need to have descriptions of each and every cultist's sick peccadillos, the game mechanic information is much more useful and I would rather make up my own sick stuff to suit the specific tolerance of my players. As Monte points out in the book, 'vile' is a very different and personal thing for each and every group.

But if the rest of the board is interested then we should definitely have a warning.

-Thrommel, who's apparently more lawful neutral than chaotic evil. Do I still get to keep my fiendish bat?

Siobharek 
Orc
(12/10/02 7:18:07 am)
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Re: What are the cultists doing in Hommlet?
Do I still get to keep my fiendish bat?. What?! And be able to beat us upside the head with something that can cast darkness 3/day? No way, I figure a regular Louisville Slugger is good enough for ya.

Ducks

And yeah, I agree: It's nice to get some inspiration, but in the end, I'd probably have to rewrite most of the sick-iness for my particular group. So personally, I'd be happy to add the Hommlet writeup and leave it at that.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

LostSoul
Pie
(12/10/02 2:00:42 pm)
Reply
more Vile goodness
I'm planning on doing the whole of the module like this. (And I'll put some "Vile" or "Mature" warnings in the subject line.) Hopefully anybody who wants some more ick-factor in the game will be able to pick and choose what to use. So far I've finished the Moathouse and Nulb, but there really isn't that much stuff there (except for some relationships between the gnolls, the humans clerics, and Ysslansh).

As far as the depravity of the guys in the Fanes... that should be some pretty disturbing stuff. ;)

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