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Dissolution Notes Malady

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The Malady (10-12)

Background

Shortly after the Vallis moon returned, Aggah-Shan sent Team Evil into the Banewarrens looking for three items: the malady lock, the osseous redoubt and the book of inverted darkness. They found the first two in the outer vaults, but never discovered the inner vaults. Knowing that the redoubt contains the remnant crown, Kaliu, one of the more ambitious members of Team Evil, opened it to get at the crown. Unfortunately for her, Aggah-Shan anticipated this betrayal, so reversed the descriptions of the two boxes when briefing the team. In fact, Kaliu opened the malady case, releasing the Malady and destroying her body completely. While some of the other members of the team are immune to disease, others were infected without realizing it.

Aggah-Shan used them to infect selected victims at both the White House and the Cock Pit, before telling them of the disease and allowing them to heal themselves. The new victims were selected specifically to transfer the disease to as many people as possible. In the case of the White House, most of the prostitutes were infected through sex and, in turn, have been passing the disease onto their customers, assisted by lowering of rates "in honor of the city's salvation".

Even while Ptolus was celebrating the Unlikely Six as its saviors, the disease was slowly spreading through the city. Team Evil carefully managed the infect prostitutes in the White House, sequestering them under the brothel once they fully turned, and replacing them with fresh (similarly infected) prostitutes (leading to even more rate reductions and "specials" on "new, fresh faces"). But, by the time the Six were meeting Cassiadora, Team Evil was getting sloppy, and several prostitutes fully turned while with customers, then ran amok in the White House. Team Evil did little to stop this, knowing that something like it was inevitable sooner or later. They allowed customers to get bitten, then run away, knowing it would carry the disease even further. They threw those killed into the alley, knowing they would soon animate and search for flesh.

As they day progressed, Team Evil launched the next phase of Aggah-Shan's plan: they visited the safe houses Aggah-Shan provided to the remaining chaos cultists left over from his earlier Night of Dissolution plans. Having previously infected some of these cultists, and also throwing turned prostitutes into the safe houses, they locked the safe house doors and let the zombies rampage until nightfall, infecting everyone inside. At night, a similar scene was carried out at the Cock Pit. Several gladiators were forced to drink the blood of the infected "to help them in the arena". Their transformation into undead, therefore, occurred more rapidly. Team Evil orchestrated a very crowded night in the Cock Pit, then barred the doors and unleashed the infected gladiators. Though numerous patrons managed to make it out alive, few escaped getting bitten or scratched by the infected, and now carry the disease into the city. A few hours later, they opened the doors to the chaos cult safe houses, flooding hundreds of zombies out into the night.

Aggah-Shan, meanwhile, had finished the last act (and true purpose) of the chaos cults' thrall program by infecting dozens of gestating venom-shaped thralls with the disease. These hatched at about the same time the infected cultists were released, and were unleashed on the streets as well.

Stories about the outbreaks at the White House and the Cock Pit make a couple of special edition broadsheets, but by then the city is in turmoil. Zombies actively roam the city, biting any they find. Victims rise shortly after and begin to hunt as well. People infected at the White House and the Cock Pit transform as well, attacking family members and infecting them in turn.

By the time the Six return from the Banewarrens, the city is in chaos. Oldtown is the worst hit by the infection, but most neighborhoods have at least some infected, and several parts of the city are on fire. Pythoness House is compromised when one of Cassiadora's employees, having been infected in his secret trips to the White House, turns and infects most of the staff. One of them surprises Cassiadora, biting her while she is in human form. After blowing her Fort save, the disease starts to transform her immediately, and she winds up in dragon form in the courtyard, writhing, her dragon nature dueling with the disease, which is where the players will find her.

Team Evil

Working for Aggah-Shan, trying to find the book of inverted darkness (which turns out to be fruitless, since it isn't in the Banewarrens). Perhaps in room #16 when the Shuul started fighting Slaadi? Or maybe in room #24?

  • Ostler Nackle: male dwarf deathknight (CR9, ranger 7, rogue 5). Fire-giant hide armor can make him big. Will also try to flank to use sneak attacks.
  • Anaralas: nimblewright (CR 9)
  • Blenvan: male gnome (CR 8, sorcerer 8)
  • Curuk: male hobgoblin (CR 8, cleric 8)
  • zombie giant octopus (CR 6, animated by Curuk from the outer vaults)
  • spectre (CR 7, controlled by Curuk's feat)
  • 3 gnoll skeletons (CR3, animated by Curuk from the outer vaults)
  • Ghost of Kaliu?

Team Evil hold the Banewarrens Key, and it is they who opened the Banewarrens in the first place.

Reactions

  • Inverted Pyramid has hands full with sealing Banewarrens. Convinces themselves that the release of the infection is related, so double their efforts to do so. These appear to restore the seals, even though Saggarintys is really responsible.
  • Knights of the Pale - probably running riot control, trying to organize people.
  • Quaan -
  • Shuul -
  • Ironworker's Guild - probably some kind of resistance movement, trying to save civilians
  • Temple of Teun - Shull-related.
  • Order of Iron Might
  • Keepers of the Veil

Use some characters:

  • Vendarlik, the mind flayer
  • The Iron Mage
  • The Surgeon in Shadows (who teleported away).

Neighborhoods

  • Posh section: One manor house infected due to resident frequenting the White House.
  • Fort into posh section: on lock down, using magic to scan people going in and out.
  • Oldtown: Arena turned into a corral of sorts, but this backfires.
  • Necropolis: Focus of wrath of populace, even though innocent of the Malady. Strife within as some use the plague as excuse to venture out, others make a point of staying in to calm the population.

Realities

  • Disease related magic items nearly impossible to find.
  • Looters.
  • Paranoia.
  • Barricades.


If phylactery put in box, then if lich is killed by a non-evil character, regeneration is faster and increases the lich's power.

If zombies botch a save against positive energy, they take double damage. If they die from this, they explode with a chance to infect people.

Oddly, recently infected who have remove disease cast on them come back to life, cured. If someone controls the malady case, remove disease can cure the infection in any within 100'. With control, can also make the disease globally non-contagious.

People killed don't rise as quickly during the day.

Scenes

  • Saggarintys greets players. Still tinkering. Knows the Nap Sack spell. Needs "neutrality" of the players to "better seal the warrens this time". Tells them to keep an eye out for the Banewarrens Key. "Someone must still have the hand of the Dark One. Keep it quiet, though, because in the right place, the key will also get you into Jabel."
  • Coming out of the portal. Grab the other end of the dimensional gate.
  • Abandoned rooms. One person with back turned making odd sounds. Hears group and turns, revealing zombie.
  • Cassiadora in court yard.
  • Dragons and Viridian Lords quarantine the city by force. (This might cause some to want to use the Commisar's Guns against them.)
  • Team Evil in PC's house, trying to find ledger (which is really a magically concealed journal).
  • Reading broadsheets and making link to Aggah-Shan
  • Dealing with sword? Maeda Von Rustal at Temple Teun. Shuul will be at temple. Perhaps Team Shuul survivors? Were there any? Some sort of situation where the party can get in the good graces of Maeda Von Rustal (though she is predisposed to help them for past actions).
  • What's happening at the Order of the Pale?
  • Dealing with the spectre box.
  • Walking the streets. Maybe some undead or demons from from the Reliquary out causing mayhem?
  • White House: Team Evil initial confrontation.
  • Catacombs under the White House. This is mostly a trap for the Six. Aggah-Shan needs his ledger back because, in reality, it contains notes of how to access Guhl Whatever. Writing appears when special talisman touches book. Talisman is with a bunch of similar journals (from further in the past) in Aggah-Shan's main lair. Any time the talisman is used, Aggah-Shan knows and can teleport the book it enchants to his hand. His plan is to get killed at the hands of the Six, leaving the journals for them to find. As they read through the journals and figure out how the talisman works, Aggah-Shan will be regrowing in the osseous redoubt, far from his lair (maybe in the wreckage of the chaos machine). Probably some undead/chaositech experiments in the lair. Eropodi in the "false" throne room.
  • End with large chaos bomb?