Players who read though Lost Omens Legends might find that they want to learn more about just what kind of deals Baba Yaga can offer them or the cool alchemy techniques that Artokus Kirran saves for only his most important students. GMs who read through the book might see that Queen Abrogail Thrune has contracts that can offer great power (with an obviously high price) or that Runelord Sorshen can teach a new, enchanting spell. These cool new options are easy enough to hand out, but we want tables to do more than just snag a new feat or magic item. We want you to meet these legends in the flesh! At least, as best as one can with a roleplaying game.
To help out with that, I’ve put together a brief little encounter in Qahir Palace, home of Satrap Xerbystes II, his wife Shahiyan Deena al-Parishat, and his vizier Hebizid Vraj. The palace is located in Katheer, capital of Qadira. For this encounter, the PCs have earned the right to visit with Satrap Xerbystes. Perhaps the PCs are here for a diplomatic endeavor to win the satrap’s favor. Maybe the vizier called them to the palace to task them with an important mission. It could also be that the PCs won Deena’s attention after a notable horse race. Whatever the case, the PCs are now in the royal palace and, of course, things are about to go wrong.
The encounter below is for 9th-level Pathfinder characters. First, let’s take a look at the map. The map is of a large Qadiran palace that has lots of room for intrigue, stealth, and of course, combat. Feel free to use this map as you like in your own game, sprinkling in encounters, traps, and more as you see fit. Today’s encounter takes place in the throne room, but could totally spill out into the rest of the palace!
This luxurious palace serves as the home for Xerbystes II. The palace itself is relatively small compared to others throughout the Padishah Empire of Kelesh, but remains impressive nonetheless. The palace is lit with bright light throughout the day and the guards that patrol the palace use personal torches after dark. The palace ceilings rise to a height of 20 feet on the first floor and are only 10 feet high on other floors.
- Palace Stairs: These fine, marble stairs lead up to the palace.
- Bazaar: Shahiyan Deena al-Parishat allocates this space for local merchants to sell their wares. She specifically selects merchants with unique or high-quality items in an attempt to showcase Qadiran crafting skill.
- Entryway: This grand domed arch serves as the palace entrance. The pair of guards posted here make sure to only allow expected guests inside and also keep an eye on the bazaar.
- Barracks: The palace guards sleep here between shifts.
- Stable: Deena keeps a number of her prized mounts here as this stable offers better defenses than the stable on the palace grounds. The staircase leads down to the armory landing (room 23).
- Meeting Chambers: Xerbystes and Hebizid use this chamber for meetings with diplomats and other guests.
- Courtyard: This open-air garden offers a break from the cramped quarters of the palace.
- War Room: Xerbystes uses the table’s illusion magic to discuss battle strategy with his advisors.
- . Storage: Palace staff keep food and other supplies here. The staircase descends down to the additional storage (room 26) and the rest of the basement.
- Throne Room: Xerbystes holds court in this large chamber. A secret door on the back wall allows Xerbystes to slip away to other floors in times of danger. Spotting the door requires a successful DC 25 Perception check, though a specialized mechanism prevents immediate use for the door. Xyrbestes, Deena, and Hebizid all know the required method of using the door and can do open it with a single Interact action. Anyone else will need to succeed at three total DC 30 Thievery checks to Disable the Device that locks the door. The secret passage leads up to the secret chamber connecting the royal bedroom (room 19) and the basement tunnel (room 29).
- Servant’s Quarters: This are the resting quarters for the palace staff.
- Kitchen: The palace staff are available at all hours to make a meal here.
- Dining Hall: Xerbystes holds regular dinners here for guests. The palace staff use the smaller tables as serving tables during meals.
- Bathing Room: This is Deena’s personal bath.
- Shahiyan’s Chambers: This are Deena’s personal quarters.
- Office: Deena uses this office when writing letters and other messages.
- Vizier’s Chambers: Hebizid stays in these chambers and uses the connected office for his work.
- Vizier’s Office: Hebizid uses this office for his work.
- Royal Bedroom: This are Xerbystes’s personal quarters. A secret door connects to hidden chamber. Locating and using the door uses the same rules as the secret door in the throne room.
- Lounge: Xerbystes relaxes here during evenings, usually with Deena or Hebizid as a companion.
- Bathing Room: This is Xerbystes’s personal bath.
- Stairwell: This staircase leads down to the main hallway between the servant quarts and the kitchen, allowing the staff quick access when tending to royal needs.
- Armory Landing: This small landing contains a staircase that connects to the stable (room 5) upstairs.
- Armor: The palace guards keep their equipment and extra gear in this room.
- Guard Lounge: The palace guards relax here when off-duty or taking breaks. Extra beds are kept here to support additional guards during important events.
- Additional Storage: The rest of the palace storage is here and connects with the storage upstairs (room 9).
- Library: Xerbystes keeps notable reading material and important documents such as financial records here.
- Royal Treasury: This room holds the palace’s treasure. A guard stands at the entryway at all times of the day.
- Basement Tunnel: This secret tunnel connects to the other secret chambers on the above floors. Locating and using the doors that connect to this tunnel uses the same rules as the secret door in the throne room.
Palace Attack Severe 9
“You have a chance to meet with Qadiran royalty. Upon being ushered into the palace, you make your way into the grand throne room.”
A local pro-slavery group, the Burning Sands, has grown upset at Deena’s continued abolitionist stance and have decided to put an end to the abolitionist decrees coming from the palace. The group recently learned of the PC’s visit to the palace and recognized that it would serve as a perfect distraction for their attack on the palace so they can put an end to Xerbystes and Deena.
Creatures: The members of the Burning Sands are disguised as staff and roaming the throne room. A servant notices one of the assassins drawing their blade. Her scream alerts the room and Xerbystes (or the appropriate person) immediately slips into the secret chamber behind the throne room, escaping to safety. It’s up to the PCs to fend off the assassins! 1d4+1 rounds after the combat begins, a squad of palace guards join in to assist the PCs.
Burning Sands Assassins (4) — Creature 8
Assassin (Gamemastery Guide 211)
Initiative Deception +12
Qahir Guards (4) — Creature 5
Elite Palace Guards (Bestiary 6, Gamemastery Guide 211)
Initiative Perception +14
Treasure: Once the PCs deal with the assassins, they earn the satrap’s thanks. In addition to a hefty gold reward of 900 gp, Xerbystes offers the PCs a particularly unique gift. His palace spellcasters have developed a method that can infuse an animal companion with elemental power, converting the animal companion into a genie-touched companion. He is willing to have his spellcasters use this technique on the PC’s companions or grant them one of these companions as a gift.
To learn more about Xerbystes, Deena, and Hebizid as well as the power that a genie-touched companion holds, check out Lost Omens Legends when it releases on July 30th!
A Night in Katheer
Friday, July 24, 2020