Chamugra Oil (inspired by the real life Chaulmoogra)
Chamugra Oil comes from a plant of the same name, which grows exclusively in humid, dusky environments. They can be found in most dense jungles of any world, but grow in surprising abundance in the Umbral Fens. Small to medium-sized bush-like trees, the Chamugra sprouts plump grayish fruit, which resemble oranges in shape and size, feels like peaches in the hand, and taste disturblingly sour, more so than lemons. The fruit of the bush-tree has neither beneficial nor harmful properties of any mention, but many stubborn souls have mistakenly focused on the fruit over the years when investigating the peculiar nature of the plant.
The acrid oil from the Chamugra bark-like roots, however is another matter entirely. If properly harvested, the syrupy substance yields a yellowish oil, which coats the bark-root, and allows it to burn like a candle of pale greenish flame, when lit. Visitors who need to make their way among the fogs and shadows of the Umbral Fens and City of Shadow, might well find the 'Chaulmoogra Sticks' useful torches in essence. They would also find themselves quickly attracting the wrong kind of attention, for fire is taboo to the Silhouettes, a dangerous element best left forgotten.
The Oil has another property, of which scarce few are aware. Chamugra Oil is a near perfect cure for leprosy! The whys and hows of how it fuctions are unknown by even those few that no of the Oil's power, but eight out of ten lepers who smear the oil on themselves would be cured of the dreadful affliction over a period of several weeks to a month.
Finally, Chamugra Oil has a baneful effect on the malevolent shadows of the city. Smeared on weapons and fired up, the feint greenish flames which flicker along the blade, cause grievous wounds to the creatures of shadow-essence. (extra damage)
A handful of Silhouettes, including several in Vars' Liberation Front, Vars' Luminous Faction, or the VLF as they also call themselves, are aware that during the glorious Luminous Years, one of the Queen's apellations was Hydhealer, 'Hyd' meaning leper, in the language of the City. These Silhouettes (and Vars) are also aware of how she acquired that title, as it was this much-loved queen herself, who first discovered the plant's extraordinary properties, sharing her wisdom with her subjects. They are also certainly aware that the Chamugra Oil does great harm to their enslavers, all but the Haints and SS himself, feel its burn. Vars has sent several sorties into the Fens over the years, but only several even came back, and those that did, brought back only limited amounts of the plant. To further complicate matters, the Sils fear the flickering green flames the oil causes, it is as equally harmful to them as it is to the true shadows.
Side Note:Having the PCs interact with or team up with Vars and the Silhouettes against the Swollen Shadow is certainly not an absolute necessity in this adventure, but the initial role-playing pains can certainly yield some fruit later on!
Their is one other potentially dangerous way for the PCs to discover the secrets of the Chamugra. Somewhere in the Umbral Fens, twitter and flutter the Shadow-Lepers
Abroin's Great Favor This gold and moonstone ring, can be found on the remains of Abroin, below the Umbral Fens, in the secret tunnel, now inhabited by Fairhog the Shadow-Spectre. The ring allowed Abroin to temporarily bestow magic-using abilities on those he deemed worthy. One did not have to be a spellcaster to enjoy the short-lived, but powerful boon and benefits of acqiring the ability to cast Abroin's spells Go to Comment
Well, the first part begins rather like a sketch and we are presented with mundane scene after mundane scene in a rapid fashion.
The real ingeniuety dwells in the reference to the swollen shadow plot: Most intense and an excellent read. Nearing the end the sub is a true 5 and with honours to boot, but alas: Not all of the post is of such high quality.
I like this character. Even without the shadow stuff, he is still a valid addition, and an NPC that should exist - who is better to remind heroes of world's dangers, than a member of a legendary group, now old, weak and practically homeless, atoning for his cowardice which was the only way to survive. And he is still marked by the evil he tried to escape... good work. As said, I like this one, with or without the plot.
(Note: include why he is called 'Sleep-Eye' also here. It is a neat, defining detail.) Go to Comment
This is a good character, with nice depth and good dramatic hooks... even if you are not specifically using the plot. The story, which is important to their plot, is interesting and a nice addition. (Of course, the moment you show them a completed story, the PC's will have an alarm go off in their head and they will know that this is insanely important). Extra .5xs for being part of a greater whole and the storyhook. Go to Comment
A tale within a tale... A lot of good imagery given with plenty of detail. This is probably my favorite section of his tale.
The wind flutters no banners in that city, carries no scents away from it. The sun shines but the gloom cannot be washed away by such simple light. The rains fall, but the stones of the houses remain cracked and dry, the mortar splintering and weakening until the towers toppled to the earth. The locals, now prisoners of fear lived under the rule of Swollen Shadow and his seven Haints. Go to Comment