The Cage of Thorns, Introduction

Introduction to: The Cage of Thorns
a Realms of Edeos D&D 4E adventure for 3-6 PCs Level 7-10 (Heroic 3 tier) written by Andy Schiller
The Cage of Thorns: A Realms of Edeos Adventure
If you are playing a character in The Cage of Thorns, DO NOT READ THIS unless you want to spoil all the surprises, and take all the discovery out of your game.
Playtested at Total Escape Games, Broomfield, CO, June-August 2011.
Written by: Andy Schiller
Original Edeos Concept by: Josh Robillard and Andy Schiller
This game can be played in 4 sessions, with each ses- sion being 3-4 hours. It is a great way to introduce new party members to each other, and makes an excellent story seed for an ongoing campaign.
“Each of the four foes holds the key to the other’s demise.”

This adventure provides a great premise to start a new group, and to introduce the PCs to each other. It also provides a recurring theme that will take Level 1 characters nine more levels to complete.
Each PC spends the night at a different inn. In the morning, they all regain conciousness in a jail cell. Having never met each other, the PCs are forced to form an alliance. “Who teleported us here, and why?”. “How do we escape?”.
The party finds themselves in the lair of a quartet of ill-tempered outlaws: a disgraced knight, a necromancer, an assassin, and a shadow priest. The ‘four foes’ have plenty of minion guards. These four evil-doers are capturing unwitting travelers through teleportation as they sleep, and siphoning their essence into a “death gate”. When 1,000 souls are captured and stored, the outlaws intend to summon an other-planar being to do their bidding.
Of course, none of the brigands trusts each other. The shadow priest has a magic item that will immobilize the assassin, if the need arises. The assassin has a chisel that negates the wizard’s arcane spells, that he keeps hidden. The wizard has an instrument that stuns, then weakens the fighter, in case of confrontation. And the fighter has an item that will blind and silence the shadow priest, that he keeps on him at all times. If the PCs can learn this, they can use it to their advantage to take on the ‘four foes’ one at a time.
Inside the cell with the party is a skeleton. A brief search of the corpse reveals a diary. In this book, the deceased adventurer writes about being teleported into this jail cell numerous times, with his comrades. He describes escaping this dungeon by climbing through a pit of sand, and making plans to defeat “the 4 foes”. Of course, it doesn’t say how, except for some cryptic clues about a glass shattering ritual, and an harmonic hammer. The diary warns against “taking the southern corridor”, which resulted in losing his entire party. It also eludes to a giant cage, which he escapes by shrinking to the size of a mouse, and fitting between the bars. He talks about escaping a second time through a labyrinth of blades. After escaping, he was teleported into the jail cell again. On his third abduction, he escaped the jail cell by playing a ruse on the guards. In his wanderings through the dungeon, he came across a chasm filled with a river of molten lava. It does not say how he crossed it. Across the chasm he stumbled upon a huge, glowing glass cylander. It seemed to radiate dark magic. Perhaps his mind was just playing tricks on him, but the thought he saw the faces of his friends inside the jar.
The PCs can smell food as they sit in the jail cell. However, the guards do not bring the party nourishment. The party has no food, and keeps getting a -2 for each 8 hours spent without eating…

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