Cats Have No Lord

A Tomb of Twins

INTRODUCTION

A shadow looms over Dreklow.

The tomb of the twin necromancers that once terrorized this region stands as an affront to all who knew their names. Although they were defeated centuries ago, their tower torn down stone by stone, although everyone would prefer to forget their existence, priests enter the tomb once a month to conduct a ritual kept secret upon pain of death.

Where there is mystery, there are rumors. Here, the talk is of great treasure held in the burial chamber, waiting only for the right people to plunder it. There are also rumors of danger and dark magic placed on the tomb to ward off those lured by treasure, but even those trials may be overcome for the right price.

ABOUT THIS TEXT

A Tomb of Twins is a system-ambivalent adventure designed for old-school-style play. The Referee may decide if saves or ability checks are required for particular actions taken to overcome the challenges in the dungeon, but none are stipulated in the text, which makes no reference to specific game mechanics. Every challenge may be overcome by creative problem-solving alone. Dungeon room descriptions are provided for the Referee only (no read-aloud text) with bolded text indicating actionable or important items. Creatures, indicated by italicized text, are all unique to this adventure with stats provided in the bestiary section. Creature stats are provided for CRACK! (compatible with B/X-based games), Cairn, and Mörk Borg.

This adventure is intended for lower-level play (i.e. 1–3 in B/X-based games). All combat is potentially deadly but avoidable, and careful and creative play will be more rewarding regardless of level.

The dungeon was originally written as a standalone one-shot, and is perhaps best played as such, but it could also be fit into an ongoing campaign with the understanding that releasing the liches from the tomb could have major consequences in your campaign world. If intending to complete the dungeon in a single session, the Referee may start the players at the entrance to the tomb rather than in the village of Dreklow. In that case, provide players the standard history of the tomb, roll once on the rumors table for each player, and roll for a hook that lured them to the tomb.

HISTORY

Most in the village know a simple history of the tomb:

For more than a century, the twin necromancers Drezis and Woxis ruled over the area from a tower atop the seaside cliffs. They commandeered food and supplies to support their wicked followers, kidnapped villagers for necromantic experiments, and crushed any who dared oppose them.

When their bodies grew too old and frail to continue, a mob of villagers seized their chance, tearing down the tower and slaying the followers of the dark lords.

The more powerful in the village, for unknown reasons, built an elaborate tomb for the necromancers. It remains standing to this day, visited monthly by the priests for their cryptic ritual. Rumors have spread of the treasures within the tomb, in particular a set of crystal vials once viewed in the burial chamber by a thief shortly before she was captured. They are said to be of great arcane value, and many have offered a queen’s ransom for them.

FORGOTTEN HISTORY

Only the Priesthood of Zorander remember the full history, and they are generally unwilling to share their secrets:

suspecting that the twins had already begun a transformation into liches, a group led by the wizard Zorander arranged to stop their plan. They constructed a tomb of magical stone that can block the passage of spirits, with magically sealed doors at the entrance and burial chambers. The soul vials of the liches are kept within an anti-magic shield in the burial chamber to prevent resurrection. The shield must be renewed at each new moon; a ritual conducted by the priests.

UNKNOWN HISTORY

One aspect of the history is unknown even to the priesthood, but may be revealed through the diaries of the necromancers:

Drezis and Woxis had grown foul of each other in their final days. What began with differing ideas on the transformation to liches stewed and morphed over months into complete disagreement about everything. Neither died a natural death. Both secretly poisoned the other with small doses of arsenic in their tea over the course of a year. They will continue to hold a grudge against each other in un-life, which could be used to the advantage of any unfortunate enough to raise them.

DREKLOW

stone huts with turf roofs clustered around the long Moot Hall. Tucked at the end of a fjord below looming cliffs. Docks line the shore; a forest of masts on fishing boats. Overshadowed by the tomb atop the cliffs. The Priesthood of Zorander hide in their sanctum on the edge of the village, seeking to protect the secrets of the tomb. The Thieves Assembly and Arcane Academy keep agents in town hoping to get their hands on the treasure of the burial chamber.

THE PRIESTHOOD OF ZORANDER

An order established at the downfall of the necromancers. The descendants of the original builders of the tomb. They reside in the sanctum of Zorander, a 60 ft. tower of polished black stone. Entrance is forbidden to outsiders, and the tower is protected by powerful magical wards. They perform the monthly ritual to renew the anti-magic shield in the burial chamber. They monitor incursions to the tomb, expecting most to fail. They clean the tomb monthly, removing the corpses of dead adventurers and resetting traps and puzzles. They may attempt to dissuade capable-seeming adventurers from entering the tomb. Galduz, one of the oldest priests, has become corrupted by the magic of the tomb, and now secretly seeks to raise the necromancers as liches.

THE THIEVES AssEMBLY

A group of ne’er-do-wells from the nearest city, interested only in obtaining whatever treasures lie in the tomb. Most interested in the allegedly valuable vials in the burial chamber. Their operatives have failed several times in the past. Bogumila, their agent, is now tasked with finding outside help to plunder the tomb and passes the riches back through the assembly.

THE ARCANE ACADEMY

A school of magic along the coast to the north. They have no interest in any treasure except the vials in the burial chamber. They are unaware of their purpose, but are certain they are the pinnacle of the magic arts of Drezis and Woxis, and they hope to unlock their secrets by studying them. A novice is sent each year and tasked with securing the vials. Marzena is the unfortunate novice this year.

THE MOOT HALL

A long stone hall with a roaring fire in a central hearth lined with tables. All gather here at the end of the day to share in roasted fish and dark ales. Bogumila plies her trade as a fence for stolen goods at a secluded spot near the end of the long tables. Marzena spends her time keeping warm by the fire. Galduz lurks around the edges of the room. The rest of the villagers know little of interest to adventurers, but may share rumors in exchange for a drink.

Bogumila

Large, red-faced, and boisterous.

Once the finest cat-burglar in the city, but now happy to settle down for steady work. Outside the city and with easy access to boats, she helps move hot items far away. she shares her profits with the villagers, who in turn direct any capable seeming adventurers to her.

Wants: The vials from the burial chamber and is willing to pay 10,000 gold for them.

Knows: There are secret doors in the second room of the tomb, but not how to open them.

Marzena

Bookish, timid, and annoyed.

Doesn’t want to be here. Tried several times to enter the tomb but never made it far. she just wants to wait out her last months on this assignment, but she will try to convince anyone capable to retrieve the vials from the burial chamber.

Wants: The vials from the burial chamber and is willing to trade the services of the finest enchanters at the academy to enchant equipment.

Knows: There is a key to puzzles in the dungeon etched above the first doorway.

Galduz

Greasy, grizzly, and shifty-eyed.

Corrupted by decades of rituals in the tomb and convinced the vials must be removed from the tomb to allow Drezis and Woxis to rise. Terrified to do the task himself and seeking adventurers to do it instead.

Wants: The vials from the burial chamber, and claims they can provide immortality if adventurers bring them to him to conduct the proper ritual.

Knows: Everything about the tomb but is wary of being caught by the priesthood and unwilling to spend time talking. sparse on details, urging adventurers only to recover the vials from the burial chamber. At the referee’S discretion, Galduz may share details about one room of the tomb and how to overcome its challenges.

RUMORS

May be learned from talking with villagers at the Moot Hall. One may be learned for each hour spent buying drinks for villagers:

  1. Drezis and Woxis did not die and are trapped within the tomb waiting to escape and conquer the world (partially true)

  2. The tomb traps the spirits of anyone who dies inside and it is full of ghosts (true)

  3. There is a secret door on the roof of the tomb that leads directly to the burial chamber (false)

  4. Two men volunteered to guard the tomb when it was built and underwent a ritual to multiply themselves into fourteen guardians (true)

  5. There is a source of eternal life in the burial chamber (partially true)

  6. Most of the treasure in the tomb is unguarded but hidden behind secret doors (true)

  7. Those who wish to enter the tomb must stand outside naked and shout “Drezis and Woxis” three times in order to open the doors (false)

  8. There are secret doors behind the painted carvings in the second room of the tomb (true)

  9. The Priests of Zorander conduct a human sacrifice inside the tomb each month to appease the spirits of Drezis and Woxis (false)

  10. A purple potion found within the tomb may heal all wounds (true)

HOOKS

The following hooks may be used to lure players to the tomb. The GM may roll randomly or select from this list:

1.Bogumila sends a child to bring the party to her. she attempts to convince them to retrieve the treasure at the heart of the tomb with the promise they may keep anything else they find and a payment of 10,000 gold for the vials.

2.Marzena approaches the party and promises them the service of the finest enchanters at the Wizard’s College to enchant their equipment if they retrieve the vials from the burial chamber.

3.Galduz approaches the party and tells them they can become immortal if they recover the vials from the burial chamber and bring them to him to conduct the proper ritual.

4.The party overhears two new members of the Priesthood of Zorander discussing the wealth they have seen inside the chests in the tomb and how valuable they have heard the vials in the burial chamber are.

THE TOMB

OUTSIDE

Perched on a cliff overlooking Dreklow and the crashing waves of the sea. A well-worn trail leads from the village to the tomb. A featureless black dome of polished stone. Large, mirror-like, silver doors set in a square section protruding from the dome. Doors are closed but unlocked and open easily.

INSIDE

The interior is all the same polished black stone as the exterior, undecorated except where noted. There are two paths through the tomb splitting at Room 2 and rejoining at Room 9. Either path may be taken in any order. The rooms on each path were originally mirrors of each other, but swampkins recently wrecked the central room of the western path and tried and failed to get past the other rooms on that side.

A TOMB FULL OF GHOSTS

The tomb traps spirits, which cannot pass through the walls or the doors of the entrance or burial chamber. Few humans have died in the tomb, but thousands of insects and rodents have snuck under the doors only to die within the walls of the crypt. In every room except the burial chamber, there are dozens or hundreds of ghostly bugs and small rodents scurrying across the floors, walls, and ceilings.

Ghosts can pass freely through wooden doors and have knowledge of all rooms in the tomb except the burial chamber. The referee may decide what information ghosts share if they interact with adventurers. some ghosts are friendly and will share information, perhaps for a price, while others are hostile and interested only in causing harm.

The spirits of any characters killed in the tomb will also become trapped. Players may continue playing their dead characters using the ghost statblock from the bestiary. The referee may also instead play their ghost as an NPC, or they may go into hiding in the ethereal plane and no longer appear during the session.

There is a 2-in-6 chance a ghost will appear every other time characters enter a different room or if they linger too long in a single room. This may instead serve as the random encounter table for the Referee’s preferred dungeon-crawling procedures. Roll on the table to determine the nature of the ghost. All ghosts use the ghost statblock in the bestiary.

1-Villager: Wants to be free of the tomb to pass to next life. Will trade information in exchange for help escaping tomb.

2-Wizard: Wants to know the secrets at the heart of the tomb. Will trade information for help reaching the burial chamber.

3-Goblin: Enjoys being a ghost and wants to pull pranks. May provide information if coerced.

4-Priest: Intends to keep the secrets of the tomb even in death and seeks to kill anyone trespassing.

5-Thief: Despondent about being dead and doesn’t want to interact with the living. May share information if enticed.

6-Rat: Wants to skitter around and bite things. Cannot and will not communicate information about the tomb.

ENTRANCE ROOMS

Room 1: Entrance

5 x 10 ft. | dim light | doors to 0 & 2

Cramped space between entrance and inner set of dark, wooden doors (Unlocked; Room 2). Cryptic glyphs carved in unlit space above doors. Poorly made tripwire strung across entryway through exterior doors. Lightweight objects float slightly weightlessly. All who enter feel sense of unease, questioning their choice to enter the tomb.

Doors: swollen shut from moisture.

Cryptic glyphs: Cannot be seen without intentionally looking with a light source. No meaning in any known language, even through magical means of understanding unknown languages or scripts.

Tripwire: Poorly made and easily visible except to the most unobservant. Connected to cowbell in upper corner. Ringing the bell alerts swampkins in Room 7. Most who follow the tripwire to the bell will also notice the cryptic glyphs.

Room 2: Painted Scenes

10 x 10ft. | no light | doors to 1, 3, & 6

Higher ceiling curving upward and inward. Unlit brass sconces line walls. No doors deeper into tomb immediately apparent. secret doors on east (Room 3) and west (Room 6) walls. Elaborate carvings on north, east, and west walls.

sconces: Full of oil and may be lit. One on east wall and one on west wall are actually gold, but only discernible upon close inspection with light. Tilting the gold sconces opens the secret doors.

secret doors: To Room 3 on east wall and Room 6 on west wall, each near the southern corner of the wall. Indistinguishable from surrounding walls. Faint footprints in dust on floor lead to and from secret doors and door to Room 1. Knocking on them produces a strange echo. Ghosts of small insects may crawl under tiny gap at bottom of secret doors.

Elaborate carvings: show two wizards on north wall dressing in ostentatious robes, hats, and shoes. They part, continuing through mirrored scenes along the east and west walls. Each enters a room with seven figures at a table. They take a necklace from the central figure; a moon-shaped necklace on the east wall and a sun-shaped necklace on the west wall.

EAST PATH

Room 3: Treasury

10 x 10 ft. | no light | doors to 2 & 4

Low ceiling and plain walls. Three ornate black stone chests on north, west, and south walls. Black stone basin in center. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 4) in northeast corner.

Chests: seemingly of one piece with the floor and immovable. Unlocked, but protected by a trap. Contain treasure listed below.

Basin: small basin on pedestal filled with water. seemingly of one piece with the floor and immovable. Basin and water are icy to the touch. Water deactivates trap on chests either by dipping hands in before touching chests or splashing on chests before or after touching them. Applying this magical water to a weapon allows it to harm ghosts.

Room 4: Faceless Banquet

20 x 15 ft. | no light | doors to 3 & 5

Large arched ceiling curving upward and inward from east. Floor and walls covered in shallow, intricate, interlocking knot patterns. Banquet table of dark wood in center set with a feast. seven faceless figures in dark robes sit motionless on one side of the table facing the west wall. One figure in the center wears a moon-shaped necklace. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 5) in northwest corner.

Faceless figures: Will stand and move to attack anyone who enters the room unless they are wearing the robe, hat, and shoes from Room 3. They will not pursue anyone outside of the room. If the necklace is removed from the central figure or if the central figure is killed, all faceless figures freeze in place and will no longer attack.

Room 5: Strange Glyphs

10 x 10 ft. | faint light | doors to 4 & 9

Low, flat ceiling. Grid of nine large squares engraved with strange glyphs glowing faintly. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 9) in northwest corner.

strange Glyphs: Include those carved above door in Room 1. stepping on squares in same sequence as shown in Room 1, reading either left-to-right or right-to-left, allows safe passage through room. Glyphs all glow faintly. stepping on any square releases a puff of air from the ceiling, extinguishing uncovered light sources. stepping on a correct square stops all but that square from glowing. subsequent correct squares will also glow, increasing the light in the room. stepping on an incorrect square causes all to flash red and stop glowing. The ceiling begins falling slowly, eventually crushing anyone in the room. Allow three actions per character to attempt to escape before being crushed.

Door (to 9): Opening and closing the door resets the trap.

Room 6: Treasury

10 x 10 ft.|no light|doors to 2 & 7

Low ceiling and plain walls. Three ornate black stone chests on north, east, and south walls. Black stone basin in center. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 7) in northwest corner. The trap of the chests has been activated and a swampkin grunt floats at the ceiling, seemingly resigned to this position. Anyone entering the room also begins to float.

Chests: seemingly of one piece with the floor and immovable. Unlocked, but protected by a trap. Contain treasure listed below.

Basin: small basin on pedestal filled with water. seemingly of one piece with the floor and immovable. Basin and water are icy to the touch. Water deactivates trap on chests either by dipping hands in before touching chests or splashing on chests before or after touching them. Applying this magical water to a weapon allows it to harm ghosts.

Door: If bell in Room 1 was rung, the sound of swampkins preparing an ambush may be heard through the door (shuffling feet, shoving furniture, furtive giggles).

swampkin Grunt: set off the trap several hours ago and was left by other swampkins to learn a lesson. Willing to share information about the swampkins in exchange for help getting down.

Room 7: Ruined Banquet

20x15 ft. | faint light | doors to 6, 8, &12

Large arched ceiling curving upward and inward from west. Floor and walls covered in shallow, intricate, interlocking knot patterns. Chairs, food, and pieces of broken table strewn wildly around room. Corpses of seven faceless figures in dark robes. Faint flickering light from hole (Room 12) in northwest corner. Pristina alone in room if the bell in Room 1 was not rung. six swampkin grunts preparing an ambush if the bell in Room 1 was rung. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 8) in northeast corner.

Pristina (swampkin priestess): Kind-hearted priestess of the Great Toad. Twin sister of Cestina. Fascinated by humans and convinced Juris to raid this tomb. Leading the so-far unsuccessful attempts to break into other rooms. Convinced there is a key lost in this room that will allow passage through Rooms 6 or 8.

swampkin Grunts (6): Only present if bell in Room 1 was rung. Hastily preparing an ambush and attempting to impersonate faceless figures. Two pairs of swampkins, one on the other’S shoulders, wearing dark robes and making spooky wailing sounds. 3-in-6 chance they fall over when attempting to move or take an action. Two others hiding behind pieces of table to attack with shortbows.

Room 8: Strange Glyphs

10 x 10ft.|faint light|doors to 7 & 9

Low, flat ceiling. Grid of nine large squares engraved with strange glyphs glowing faintly. Dark wood door (Unlocked; Room 9) in northeast corner. Remains of a swampkin crushed in southeast corner with blue blood smeared along wall and ceiling.

Strange Glyphs: Include those carved above door in Room 1. stepping on squares in same sequence as shown in Room 1, reading either left-to-right or right-to-left, allows safe passage through room. Glyphs all glow faintly. stepping on any square releases a puff of air from the ceiling, extinguishing uncovered light sources. stepping on a correct square stops all but that square from glowing. subsequent correct squares will also glow, increasing the light in the room. stepping on an incorrect square causes all to flash red and stop glowing. The ceiling begins falling slowly, eventually crushing anyone in the room. Allow three actions per character to attempt to escape before being crushed.

Door (to 9): Opening and closing the door resets the trap.

FINAL ROOMS

Room 9: Respite

5x15ft.|dim light|doors to 5, 8, & 9

Arched ceiling curves upwards and inwards from north. Glowing orb suspended from center of ceiling provides dim light. shallow basin of purplish liquid in center of floor. Two sets of dark wooden doors (Unlocked; Room 10) on south wall.

Glowing Orb: 2 ft. diameter orb. Glows with dim, yellowish light. Attached by rope and may be removed.

Basin: shallow basin carved in floor. Purplish liquid heals all wounds once per day. Ineffective after 1d4 hours if removed from the basin. Applying this magical liquid to a weapon allows it to harm ghosts.

Room 10: Antechamber

10 x 15 ft.| bright light |doors to 9 & 11

High ceiling. Floor and walls covered in shallow, intricate, interlocking knot patterns. Brightly lit by burning sconces lining walls. Elaborate doors (Locked; Room 11) on south wall.

Elaborate doors: Elaborately sculpted bronze doors. Indentations in the center of each, one in the shape of a moon and one in the shape of the sun. Protected by a trap. Decorated with images of bearded men raising hordes of skeletons to life. They wear the same clothes depicted in the images in Room 2.

Room 11: The Burial Chamber

20 x 30 ft.|faint light in center|door to 10

Long room with high domed ceiling. six large square columns in lines down each side. Elaborate pedestal in center with faintly glowing crystal vials. Two black stone sarcophagi at south end of room.

Pedestal: Elaborately carved black stone pedestal of one piece with floor. Hidden compartment at base hides scroll with ritual for anti-magic shield. Compartment is slightly ajar, with 1-in-6 chance of being spotted upon entering the room. Otherwise, it may only be found with a careful inspection of the pedestal.

The ritual involves painting glyphs found above the door in Room 1 in a circle on the floor with blood, pouring liquid from the basin in Room 9 in the center, and dancing around it while chanting. Players or the referee may describe the specifics of the ritual in as much detail as they desire. The Referee may make the ritual as difficult to accomplish as they feel is appropriate depending on their playstyle, events in earlier rooms of the dungeon, and their desire to see their players face Drezis and Woxis as liches. For a higher chance of failure, require a series of ability checks or saves to successfully complete the ritual. For a lower chance of failure with randomness, allow a 1-in-6 or 2-in-6 chance that the ritual fails. Otherwise, allow the ritual to be described and completed without a chance of failure.

Vials: Rough-cut crystal vials filled with a pinkish liquid and glowing faintly. These are the soul vials of Drezis and Woxis. They are currently held within an anti-magic field, preventing the necromancers from rising as liches. Removing the vials from the pedestal without casting the movable anti-magic field causes the liches to rise from the sarcophagi.

Emptying a vial kills one of the liches, but also makes it worthless to anyone interested in purchasing the vials.

Drinking the liquid from a vial has the effect of the life drain ability from the lich.

sarcophagi: Contain the corpses of Drezis and Woxis, currently suspended and unable to rise as liches.

SWAMPKIN COUNTRY

Room 12: Cave

large|bright light|doors to 7 & tunnels

Large, irregularly shaped cave recently carved by the swampkin horde. Juris (swampkin warlord) sits on a stone throne in front of a large bonfire. Cestina (swampkin priestess) stands by the fire with three swampkin brutes and seven swampkin grunts picking through spoils from Room 7. Hole in northwest corner leads deeper into the swampkin tunnels.

swampkin Horde: swampkins from the marshes south of Dreklow tunneled into the tomb shortly after the last monthly ritual and have not yet been discovered by the priests. They killed the faceless figures in Room 7 and looted the room, but they have not yet been able to solve the puzzle in Room 8 or open the secret door in Room 6. They are not inherently hostile to adventurers, and they could be persuaded to be helpful in exchange for half the treasure in the tomb.

Juris (swampkin warlord): Larger than other swampkins, deep blue skin, and forlorn face. Recently ascended as warlord and insecure. They rely heavily on Cestina and Pristina, and are eager to prove themselves to the horde by bringing back treasure from the tomb. Willing to work with adventurers in exchange for half the treasure, or if they think they have a chance to double cross.

Cestina (swampkin priestess): Mean-hearted priestess of the Great Toad. Twin sister of Pristina. Communicates with the Great Toad and provides messages to horde through Pristina. skeptical of plan to raid tomb and just wants to go home. Would prefer to kill any adventurers who come around.

Tunnels: An interconnected maze of roughly carved tunnels and chambers that are almost impossible to navigate. Roll on the table below to determine the outcome when attempting to navigate the tunnels:

1 – Return to Room 12 immediately

2 – Lost for 1d4 days before coming to surface in marsh south of Dreklow

3 – 20 ft. circular chamber with 2d12 swampkin brutes

4 – 10 ft. circular chamber with 4d8 swampkin grunts

5 – A dead end tunnel with 1d8 swampkin brutes

6 – A poorly constructed rope bridge over a chasm with 2d8 swampkin grunts

The red string (Room 3, Chest 3) allows players to return to the point at which they started using the string rather than rolling to navigate.

AFTERMATH

If Drezis and Woxis leave the tomb, they will descend upon Dreklow, slaughtering the Priesthood of Zorander and making slaves of the villagers. They will destroy the Tomb and the sanctum of Zorander and rebuild their tower using the stones. From there, they will spread over the countryside, making slaves and building an army until they are powerful enough to challenge nearby cities. Ultimately, they hope to conquer the world.

If players remove the soul vials from the tomb using the anti-magic shield, the outcome depends on what they do next:

BESTIARY

FACELESS FIGURE

Tall; slender; faceless; no voice Attacks anyone not wearing the wizard’s clothes and fights to the death

CRACK!

dAC 10 (unarmored), HP 3d8 (see Divided soul), +2 claws 1d4-2 (see Divided soul), S 15, ML 12 - Paralysis target of a successful claws attack must save or be paralyzed for 1d4 turns; Divided soul Faceless Figures are constructs sharing a soul split from one individual (wearing the necklace). Each is initially weakened, but they become stronger as more are killed. When 7 are present, each has 2 HP and a -2 modifier to damage. Each time one is killed, the others gain +2 maximum HP and regain all lost HP. This increases up to 12 HP for a single individual if all others are killed. They also gain +1 to damage, up to a maximum of +4 for a single individual if all others are killed. If the figure wearing the necklace is killed, all others die instantly.

Treasure dark robes

Mörk Borg

HP 12 Morale 12 No Armor Claws d4-2 (see Divided soul)

Specials:

Paralysis target of a successful claws attack must test toughness (DR10) or be paralyzed for 1d4 rounds

Divided soul Faceless Figures are constructs sharing a soul split from one individual (wearing the necklace). Each is initially weakened, but they become stronger as more are killed. When 7 are present, each has 2 HP and a -2 modifier to damage. Each time one is killed, the others gain +2 maximum HP and regain all lost HP. This increases up to 12 HP for a single individual if all others are killed. They also gain +1 to damage, up to a maximum of +4 for a single individual if all others are killed. If the figure wearing the necklace is killed, all others die instantly.

Treasure dark robes

Cairn

6 HP, 2 STR, 10 DEX, 15 WIL, claws (d4)

GHOST

Transparent; billowy; disposition depends upon type (see A Tomb Full of Ghosts)

CRACK!

dAC 10, HP 3d8 (12), +2 ghostly chill 1d6 (3), S 12, ML 7 - Ghostly Chill target of successful attack must save or spend 1d4 turns seeking a source of heat; Incorporeal immune to non-magical sources of damage; may pass through wood doors

Treasure ectoplasm

Mörk Borg

HP 12 Morale 7 No Armor Ghostly chill d6

Specials:

Ghostly Chill target of successful attack must test toughness (DR10) or spend 1d4 rounds seeking a source of heat

Incorporeal immune to non-magical sources of damage; may pass through wood doors

Treasure ectoplasm

CAIRN

6 HP, 12 STR, 12 DEX, 10 WIL, ghostly chill (d6)

LICH

Tall; dark; bony; low angry whispers

Kills anything in the way of world domination

CRACK!

dAC 16 (as plate), HP 10d8 (45), +8 internal flame 3d6+2 (14), S 18, ML 12 - Internal Flame target of successful attack must save or take damage internally from extreme heat

Worm Swarm conjures swarm of earthworms that attempt to overwhelm target. Target takes 1d4 damage per turn. Target must save or be held in place by worms and unable to move or take actions other than attempting to escape. May save again at the start of each turn

Life Drain target must save or take 3d6+4 (18) damage

Deathless if the lich is reduced to 0 HP, it does not die permanently so long as its soul vial is intact. It will instead be resurrected in 1d4 days.

Treasure fancy robes (75 gp); bone headdress

Mörk Borg

HP 45 Morale 12 Magical Field –d6 Internal Flame 3d6+2 (14)

Specials:

Internal Flame target of successful attack must test Toughness (DR 14) or take damage internally from extreme heat

Worm Swarm conjures swarm of earthworms that attempt to overwhelm target. Target takes 1d4 damage per turn. Target must save or be held in place by worms and unable to move or take actions other than attempting to escape. May save again at the start of each turn

Life Drain target must save or take 3d6+4 (18) damage

Deathless if the lich is reduced to 0 HP, it does not die permanently so long as its soul vial is intact. It will instead be resurrected in 1d4 days.

Treasure fancy robes (75 gp); bone headdress

CAIRN

13 HP, 15 STR, 14 DEX, 15 WIL, internal flame (d6)

SWAMPKIN BRUTE

squat; muscular; bluish-green skin; pointy teeth; nasally and mean voice

Ruthless and indiscriminate killers; rush headfirst and don’t look back

CRACK!

dAC 12, HP 2d8 (9), +1 fists (x2) 1d4+1 (3), S 13, ML 9 - Bog Acid Spray 1d6 (3) acid damage per turn for 1d4 turns unless washed off, affects 1d6 targets

Treasure Purse with 6 gp; six pieces of jerky (unknown meat); acid sac (if removed from throat) may be thrown (1d6, area)

Mörk Borg

HP 9 Morale 8 Thick skin –d2 Fists (x2) 1d4+1

Special: Bog Acid Spray 1d6 (3) acid damage per turn for 1d4 turns until washed off, affects 1d6 targets

Treasure Purse with 50 sp; six pieces of jerky (unknown meat); acid sac (if removed from throat) may be used as thrown weapon (1d6 to 1d6 creatures)

CAIRN

5 HP, 1 Armor, 12 STR, 12 DEX, 8 WIL, fists (d4+d4)

SWAMPKIN GRUNT

Purplish-blue skin; prominent ears; short and scrawny; sharp teeth; high-pitched and gravelly voice

Ambush in packs and set traps; poor attempts to disguise as other creatures; ruthless and indiscriminate killers

CRACK!

dAC 12 (as leather), HP 1d8 (5) | +0 stabbing stick or shortbow 1d4 (2), S 12, ML 7 - Bog Acid Spit – 1d6 (3) acid damage per turn for 1d4 turns unless washed off

Treasure stabbing stick (1d4); shortbow (1d4) with poorly made arrows (5); marsh reed clothes (as leather armor); pouch with shiny rocks; acid sac (if removed from throat) may be used as thrown weapon (1d6, area)

Mörk Borg

HP 5 Morale 7 Marsh Reed Armor –d2 stabbing stick or shortbow d4

Special: Bog Acid Spit – 1d6 (3) acid damage per round for 1d4 rounds unless washed off

Treasure stabbing stick (1d4); shortbow (1d4) with poorly made arrows (5); marsh reed clothes (-d2 armor); pouch with shiny rocks; acid sac (if removed from throat) may be used as thrown weapon (1d6 to 1d6 creatures)

CAIRN

4 HP, 1 Armor, 9 STR, 15 DEX, 6 WIL, stabbing stick (d4) or shortbow (d4)

SWAMPKIN PRIESTESS

Deep purple skin; prominent ears; squat and hunched; squinty eye; raspy voice with deliberate cadence

Fights from distance; clever and practical; willing to negotiate rather than fight

CRACK!

dAC 12 (as leather), HP 2d8 (9), +1 staff 1d4 (2), S 14, ML 4 - Swamp Jinx: 2d6 (7) poison damage (save for half damage). surrounded by haze of green swamp gas for 1d4 turns (1d4 (2) damage per turn)

Treasure purse with 2 gp; staff (1d4, reach) with glowing crystal (faint light) and 5 charges of swamp Jinx (recharge by rubbing with a live salamander for 1 hour); bone headdress; marsh reed armor (as leather); bone headdress; marsh reed armor (as leather armor); backpack full of dead birds and frogs

Mörk Borg

HP 10 Morale 4 Marsh Reed Armor –d2 staff d4

Special: swamp Jinx 2d6 (7) poison damage (Toughness DR10 for half damage). surrounding by haze of green swamp gas for 1d4 rounds (1d4 (2) damage per round)

Treasure purse with 30s; staff (1d4) with glowing crystal (faint light) and 5 charges of swamp Jinx (recharge by rubbing with a live salamander for 1 hour); bone headdress; marsh reed armor (as leather); bone headdress; marsh reed armor (-d2 armor); backpack full of dead birds and frogs

CAIRN

5 HP, 1 Armor, 6 STR, 10 DEX, 15 WIL, staff (d4)

SWAMPKIN WARLORD

Human sized; muscular; deep blue skin with prominent scars; low, confident voice with tinge of melancholy

Thoughtful and practical, but brutal when necessary; directs followers to surround enemies

CRACK!

dAC 14 (as chainmail), HP 4d8 (14), +3 greatclub 1d8+1 (5), S 15, ML 10 - War Cry (Once per Encounter) – Nearby swampkins gain +4 temporary HP and +1 damage for 1d4 turns

Treasure greatclub (1d8, 2H); marsh reed kilt (as leather armor); sun-shaped pendant

Mörk Borg

HP 14 Morale 10 Thick skin + Marsh Reed Kilt -d4, Greatclub d8+1

Special: War Cry (Once per Encounter) – Nearby swampkins gain +4 temporary HP and +1 damage for 1d4 rounds

Treasure greatclub (1d8, zweihand); marsh reed kilt (-2d armor); sun-shaped pendant

CAIRN

7 HP, 2 armor, 15 STR, 10 DEX, 10 WIL, greatclub (d8+d8)

CREDITS

First Edition, June 2023

Writing and Layout: Luke Simonds (https://catshavenolord.page)

Artwork and Map: Molomoot (https://molomoot.itch.io)

Editing: Allison Miller Simonds

Text © 2023 Luke Simonds. The full text of this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/). You are free to share and adapt the text for any purpose, including commercially, so long as you give attribution and distribute it under the same license.

Artwork and Map © 2022 Molomoot, all rights reserved, used with permission. The ghost illustrations (pp. 7, 8, and 27) are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) and they are available in the Weird Lil Guys Creative Commons Art Pack (https://molomoot.itch.io/weird-lil-guys).

CRACK! is an original game by Eric Mushdan and the Laminak Crew released under a Creative Commons Attribution International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

Cairn is written by Yochai Gal and released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/). Thanks to Yochai and the members of the Cairn subreddit and discord for help in creating the Cairn statblocks.

A Tomb of Twins is an independent production by Luke Simonds/Cats Have No Lord and is not affiliated with Ockult Örtmästare Games or Stockholm Kartell. It is published under the MÖRK BORG Third Party License (https://morkborg.com/license/).

MÖRK BORG is copyright Ockult Örtmästare Games and Stockholm Kartell.