The Mystery of Far Tragin
The village of Far Tragin is deep within the dangerous Northen wastes. Yet somehow it has avoided destruction by the monsters who dwell there. The PCs discover that it is a deal with an unlikly ally that protects this town. However, this deal may be failing and Far Tragin is in jeoprady.
The land around Far Tragin is full of dangerous beasts and monsters of the north. Yet somehow Far Tragin has avoided destruction when there are surely enough monsters to destroy the village. The Goblins and Ogres of the frozen tundra terrorize the lands and have attacked on several occasions, but never in enough numbers to destroy the village.
Upon arrival in Far Tragin the PCs notice a wounded town guard running through the streets. He bumps into them and exclaims that he must get to the mayor and them mumbles something about a great host of creatures as he hurries away. The next day, the mayor comes to the PCs and asks to speak with them in private. He says that the town is in grave danger, a kind of danger it has never been in before.
The mayor, named Gregorin, explains that when his father founded the town he made a deal with the Frost Giants of the Frost Land, six days journey to the north. Gregorin says that this is how the town was able to be built so far north. His father's name was Vehast and he possesed a powerful magical stone. Vehast was a great explorer, he journeyed far into the north lands, even into Frost Land. Previous to that, nobody had ever returned from Frost Land alive. Frost Land is ruled by Frost Giants and to enter means to incur their wrath. However, Vehast was very clever and he offered to use his stone to help the Frost Giants in exchange for free passage. Frost Giants, although violent and mistrusting of humans, are quite intelligent. They accepted his deal, and Vehast was allowed to pass through Frost Land freely, each time stopping to help the giants with his stone. Gregorin states that the stone was difficult to use and simply killing Verhast and taking it would do the giants no good becuase they did not know how to use it. Gregorin also says that he has no idea what exactly the stone did.
Verhast returned to visit the giants many times and, they developed a mutual respect for each other. As he was getting old, Verhast decided that it was time to settle down. However, his love of the north did not fade, so he saught to build a town in the Northern wastes where he could retire. The problem was that the wastes are very dangerous, full of Goblins and Orges. He returned to the giants to speak with Hrekdinprenal, their chieften. Verhast offered to give the stone to the giants and show them how to use it if they would prevent any army from attacking his town. Hrekdinprenal agreed, and Verhast was able to trust him because Frost Giants are actually quite noble and Hrekdinprenal was especially so. Verhast departed and founded Far Tragin where he later died in peace.
Gregorin says that since then the Frost Giants have kept their word and no army of any considerable size has attacked Far Tragin. However, he tells the PCs that his scouts have found a large army of Goblins forming and no sign of the Frost Giants taking any action. Gregorin says that he has never actually spoken with the giants himself but trusted in them as his father did. He says that the town has no hope of defeating this forming army, only the Frost Giants can defeat them. He beseaches the PCs to go to Frost Land and speak with Hrekdinprenal to determine why the giants do not destroy the army and to remedy the situation.
This plot has many potential directions from here. After a rough journey through the Northen Wastes in which the PC are attacked by many groups of Goblins and Ogres, they arrive at Frost Land and meet the giants. From here there are a number of potential scenarios depending on the level of the PCs. One scenario is that a White Dragon has stolen the stone and the giants are unwilling to attpemt to retrieve it. If the PCs retrieve the stone from the dragon, the giants will stop the Goblin army. In another scenario, Hrekdinprenal has been usurped by another giant and the PCs must convice him or help Hrekdinprenal regain his power. In the end, the giants defeat the Goblin army and renew their pledge to Far Tragin. Hrekdinprenal may form a bond with the PCs and invite them to return to visit him, which could lead to many more adventures.
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? Responses (10)
Why do we not shower accolades on good plots and keep posting how much we hate some of the bad ones?
*Cue showers of accolades*
I like this one because it is flexible and functional.
What if some wizard/other powerful NPC traced the stone here, and managed to steal it?
The giants know the stone has returned to the humans, and now they have lots to debate. Is it a human way to say 'The deal is over!' ? Is the cooperation simply ended, shall they defend them anyway or can they attack now? Or should they attack outright, if it is an insult? And while the giant elders talk and talk, the stone may be gone and the city too...
Ironically, the mage can be still in the town. So after the PC's almost die at the claws of local monsters, and manage to persuade the giants of humans' good intentions(partly), they have to make the dangerous journey back, get the stone (not an easy task), then travel back again to the giants, and watch the little war as they are trying to catch their breath.
The wizard could be anything between a simple ignorant, considering giants simply another group of monsters, and the standard villain wanting to conquer the world, or destroy the town, or whatever.
Oh, and yes. It IS a good plot.
Great plot because it allows multiple options depending on how far you want to take it. As I read it I came up with the same plot split offs that Almar wrote so I was happily surprised when they were mentioned.
While not a great fan of cold weather campaigns, this one can be easily modified to fit with any giants in any scenerio.
A refreshingly outstanding submission!
....what does that damn stone do???!!! (I mean that in a good way) It is a rather important point especially if the PCs get a hold of it by rescuing it. You know they are going to HAVE to use it.
As I originally wrote the plot, the power of the stone was not all that important. If you want to use the story this way, the power would be something like creating food or materials. Perhaps the ability to cause good trees for lumber to grow, or create food. The stones powers would be constructive and thus the stone would not be used by the PC's. However, if the DM wanted a plot in which the stone is used it could do something like control the weather in a small area. This allowed the Forst Giants to have an advantage over their enemies, or protect their lands. The PCs could then use this power to aid in retrieving the stone from the dragon etc.
That idea about the wizard stealing the stone is very interesting. That would certainly cause the giants to be angry at humanity, thus the PCs may have to convince them not to destroy the village or them. They might have to battle the giants themselves. Convincing the giants to let them get the stone back would be no easy task, and they would certainyl have limited time before the giants got mad and destroyed the village. Perhaps Hrekdinprenal gives them 8 days to return the stone and they have to act fast as time is an issue. They could have to track the wizard across the land, or through the streets of Far Tragin itself. In addition, the identity of the wizard could add plot twists and even exapand the adventure if for some reason he is determined to destroy Far Tragin.
And... (one more option) what if the stone is supposed to be used in something even bigger?
Not necessarily for saving the world, but it could be a holy relic a deity or church wants back. It gets even more complicated if it was done by a priest. Help the priest and possibly leave the town to its doom, or take the item from him and cause something still worse?
Ideally, read this in conjunction with the associated setting, Far Tragin.
More interesting could be the fact that the whole story was a wild yarn concocted by Verhast, and there were no frost giants, just superstition and an inhospital region.
This is an excellent post that needs to see the light of day again!
This, and the linked Far Tragin, are great submissions. I especially love the mystery of the magic stone, which could be any number of things, and the honorable Frost Giants. I can use this with very few variations. Solid stuff.
I approve of this plot. It is a fully completed idea which can be stripped down to more basic elements (the idea of monsters protecting a town for some reason). While I like the twist Scrasamax put on it that still leaves the question of why they were not attacked by a large army before, which could be an entirely different plot in itself.