Land of Vampires Adventure Three
The Land of Vampires series continues with “The Seed of Corruption,” a four-part level 4 adventure for one GM and one player! In what follows, we’ll cover part two of this duet adventure where the party finds and begins to explore Renwick’s Manor, a haunting locale on the edge of the Fetid Fields!
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“The Seed of Corruption” is the third in a series of duet adventures set in Steymhorod that point to an ultimate confrontation with a sinister vampire that has been targeting children. The party has pursued him from the world of Azuria to this strange land. In adventure one, the party arrived in Steymhorod, got their bearings, and attempted to aid the small settlement of Willowhold with their strange illness. In adventure two, they chose between two competing settlements and forged an alliance, granting them allies in this difficult landscape.
Part Two: Unhallowed Grounds
The edge of the Fetid Fields is a flat, treacherous swampland. Biting and stinging insects abound.
Optional Mechanic: The Swarm that Keeps on Giving
At GM’s discretion, either the PC or a randomly selected party member must roll a DC17 Constitution saving throw after being attacked by a vicious swarm of insects. On a success, they withstand the onslaught of the voracious bugs. On a failure, they suffer 1d4 piercing damage. Additionally, they become cursed by a poison the bugs carry and must roll on the short-term madness table at unfortunate moments every other day. This condition persists until lifted with a greater restoration or similarly powerful spell.
After traversing across the fields for two hours, a successful DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check allows the PC to spot the site in the fields Lazarus had described, where the Witchwood protrudes into the swampland. Against the dark outline of the trees, several ruined chimneys stretch up toward the dreary sky like skeletal fingers reaching out of a grave.
The following areas describe Renwick’s Manor. In the next portion of the adventure, we’ll explore the Vile Vault. The party starts outside manor on the grounds and then proceeds in to the manor.
Thick vines climb the massive cut stone walls of the manor house in their eternal attempt to drag them down into the swampland. A low ruined wall and gate struggle against the grasping onslaught of the swamp. Two grotesque statues flank the gate.
Many of the windows that could have permitted ingress into the building have sunk below the ground as the years have worn away at Renwick’s Manor. Characters with digging tools can access any exterior room of Renwick’s Manor with 1d6 hours of digging. Otherwise, the gate offers the most direct route to the door in R1.
Characters approaching the gate for the first time who have a passive Perception greater than 15 note that the gargoyle statue on the left is missing its head, while the one on the right is intact. The gargoyle on the right remains still and waits for the party to pass until it becomes clear that they are going to enter the ruined estate. Then, it animates and non-verbally pleads with them not to continue. The gargoyle resorts to trying to pull PCs out of the ruins if its first attempts aren’t successful. If the party attacks the gargoyle, it fights for a round or two but quickly retreats and hides.
Clouds pass before the moon and cause light and shadow to dance in waves across the swampy ground. The movement lends a physical form to the darkness around the imposing ruins ahead. A light briefly flickers and disappears in the cavernous mouth of the front entrance.
As the party nears the ruin, 3x shadows begin tracking them. They follow the party into the ruin, biding their time until the characters separate or another opportune moment to attack presents itself.
Renwick’s Manor House
The following areas describe the layout and rooms of Renwick’s Manor.
When the Master of the Treasury succumbed to the twisted energy of the precious green jewel he believed to be just another gemstone, he allowed his beloved estate to fall into disrepair. With this chance, the swamplands started to reclaim the territory that had been lost, and the weight of the stones pulled the manor deeper into the sludge.
- The roof caved in long ago leaving the house exposed to the elements.
- There is no light in the manor except what comes in from the gray sunless sky during the day and the moon and stars by night.
- Areas 1, 2, and 5 rest above the slime of the swamp, but the other areas have between one and six inches of sucking mud and sludge on the ground rendering it difficult terrain.
R1. Sunken Receiving Room
The exterior door hangs open to reveal a dank, musty interior. Ruined tapestries and toppled plinths are the only remains of what must have once been a grand entryway.
The door is swollen with moisture and hangs precariously from its hinges. A successful DC 15 Intelligence (Investigation) check allows the PC to deduce that the door was forced open as evidenced by the doorknob resting in the middle of the room amid the debris.
Mold has devoured the tapestries beyond recognition. Double doors on the northern wall are slightly ajar.
R2. Squalid Hall
The magnificent double front door is locked with an ornate lock that requires either a knock spell or a successful DC 20 check with thieves’ tools.
The walls in this hall reach 20 feet into the air, pinching the barely visible sky except at the junction where a stair sweeps up toward a non-existent second floor.
The door to R3 is stuck and requires a successful DC 17 Strength check to force open.
Though the stairs ascend to a nonexistent second floor, the prints and mud on the steps seems to have been recently disturbed. A successful DC 15 Intelligence (Investigation or Survival) check reveals that an inhumanly long, dirty foot is responsible for these tracks. This is where Juma Ratstretcher (a mad troll squatting in the ruins) keeps a paranoid lookout over his domain. At the top of the stairs, the PC can peer out over the Fetid Fields.
Any character with a passive Perception exceeding 15 hears muffled shifting and squirming coming from the alcoves to the north. The sound originates from one of Juma’s traps. Inside the trap is a swarm of rats. A speckled mouse with a pack and traveling stick stands outside the cage. His eyes open wide when he sees the party, and he dashes away to hide.
The swarm of rats is frenzied and hostile, but if the party seems ready to help or shows kindness to any of the creatures, the mouse calms them. This mouse is actually a fae creature from the Green Vale named Rutoh. Rutoh uses the sprite stat block with the following changes: they have 20hp, they do not have the invisibility ability, and they look like a mouse. Rutoh’s small stature makes them hard to hear. The fae is here to gather intel about Juma the Ratstretcher, free the captured rats, and determine what should be done about the large, evil being’s threat to the small creatures of the manor.
The door to R6 is slightly ajar.
R3. Dining Hall
The wooden floorboards squish as you step into this hall. A massive hole descends into darkness before a pair of double doors. A handrail to the east overlooks a rotting library.
The floorboards here are completely rotten and treacherous. To cross, the PC must succeed on a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw or step through the floorboards, becoming trapped and suffering 1d4 piercing damage. Success on a DC 13 Strength check frees a character trapped in this way.
Any loud noise in this area attracts the swarms of rats in R5 to attack.
The hole in front of the northernmost double doors leads 30ft down into area V6 (on the Vile Vault map). The door to area R4 is stuck and requires a DC 10 Strength (Athletics) check to force open.
R4. Rat Lab
An insane carnival of rat misery greets your eyes and ears. Miniature torture devices line the walls and tables of this horrifying room, many of them hosting suffering or dead rodents. Two suits of rusted armor lurch toward you with jerky movements as you enter.
Inside the suits of armor, rats run on wheels and operate levers to direct the armored bodies. These suits of rats use the skeleton stat block.
If Rutoh is with the party, this room of horror is quite enough to prove that Juma has gone completely mad and must be dealt with. If the party agrees to bring low the mad troll, Rutoh promises them a gift from the fae: one common or uncommon magical item each. They are certain the fae can locate it for them, lickety split.
R5. Rotting Library
Stacks of decaying, waterlogged books reach floor to ceiling. A foot of stagnant muck covers the ground.
6x swarms of rats grow fat eating the paper and binding agents of these books. They attack when they see the party in hungry desperation for meat.
Success on a DC 15 Intelligence (Investigation) check uncovers a book that has survived the ravages of time and rot. This is a spellbook containing three 1st-level spells and two 2nd-level spells.
R6. The Grand Ball Room
Two walkways on either side of this once gilded and glorious ballroom end in stairs that lead down into filth and muck. Three battered, rusty suits of armor hang around the room. A massive table floats atop the thick liquid, supporting a snoring green troll during his nap.
Juma the Ratstretcher (a troll) is a relatively light sleeper and does not roll Perception checks against Dexterity (Stealth) with disadvantage even while asleep. If he detects the party, he flies into a rage and attacks. He doesn’t, however, have any interest in dying needlessly. If he gets seriously injured, he flees up the stairs in R2 and uses them to vault out of the manor’s ruins.
The imposing suits of armor are another part of Juma’s project. Corrupted zombie rats power the suits by running on wheels and operating pulleys. These suits of rats use the skeleton stat block with the following changes: they have an AC of 16.
The stairs leading down to where Juma sleeps are incredibly slippery and require a DC15 Dexterity saving throw to navigate safely. Failure on the save results in 1d6 bludgeoning damage and falling prone.
Broken furniture and shelving has been piled into a downward-leading stairwell in one corner of this gross room…An uncanny sense tugs at your heart. Something’s down there.
Juma was frightened of the contents of the vault and erected this barricade to protect himself. It takes an hour to clear the debris and gain passage down into area V1. PCs clearing the rubble must succeed on a DC 10 Strength check or become exhausted for the next hour.
Land of Vampires is a serial adventure created under the OGL with 5e SRD resources. The support of our patrons makes this campaign possible. If you’d like to receive a new adventure PDF each month and support our creation of a full duet campaign, join us on Patreon! Alternatively, you can now purchase the first five adventures in this campaign in the DnD Duet shop! (Patrons receive the compiled adventures as part of their patron rewards.)
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