2008-02-18 Samaghar

At the beginning of the session I told the party how they had rented a suite in the Freemen’s Tower. The Heyyab district is “a villainous next of deceit, corruption, poverty, and death.” The tower has thirteen floors and is built of imported wood treated with magic. It is “a squalid guesthouse of epic proportions” and sways when strong winds tug at it. The lower four levels are controlled by the Scorpion League. This is where the party has set up camp. After a few days their comings and goings no longer arouse suspicion.

One day they spot a bathhouse. How unusual! The next day they decide to go for a bath, but are rudely sent away by the human peeping through the doorway.

The party wants to look for a bar nearby. I pull the Obisidian Blade out of my hat. Inside the dark structure Fäm – the party’s dragon adept – finds a sort of lizard man drinking and starts talking in draconic. He seems to be a worshipper of Set, the god of evil and the night, favorite of all evil power-seeking humanoids and assassins. They talk a bit about the shining pyramid of set floating above the city. Apparently an ambassador of Set currently resides in the city. When asked about the bathhouse, he laughs about the weaklings that dry out so quickly. Finally he points them to Essam.

I quickly pulled Essam out of my hat. He’s a seedy inn keeper and efreet pimp of the lower city, running his own establishment called Drunken Flower. While Nanami starts ogling Sheila the thinly veiled dancer, Kubo San, Fäm, and Saito talk to Essam with Saito doing all the translations. The Efreet suggests an evil plot: For five hundred gold he’ll arrange an attack on Ephesius. The party can then “save” him and ingratiate themselves with him. They agree to this nasty trap.

The next day Ephesius is attacked by the kobolds. Too bad I didn’t realize Ephesius has stats, too, and he’s not a low-level commoner: He’s an Adp8/Ari4, CR 11. Oh well. The party rushes towards Ephesius, saves him, is taken to his mansion for coffee, talks about the city, and being recent arrivals skilled with the blade, he invites them to see some “friends”.

This is when the party gets introduced to the salamander noble Aruj Khayr. They talk about the sultan being an ursuper coming from the Eye of Fire. When it struck at last, it took every efreeti fortress, offering the efreeti the choice to join him or to die. The efreet felt that Iblis had returned from hell to lead them once again! He took salamander fortresses and slaughtered them and at the very end, he cast down the gates of the City of Brass and slew Sultan Ashur Ban. His wife and her clan, the Hawanar, resisted for a little while but were all defeated eventually.

Talk turns to Set, the apparent alliance of Set with the sultan, the spread of Set’s influence, and finally to a secret temple of set in the lower city itself that the salamanders have heard of. They ask the party to destroy it and the party agrees.

I just prepared two rooms with fights in them. The first room had several columns providing cover for rogues and I used five Black Jackals of Set (CR 8) and a Black Jackals of Set jackalwere (CR 12). That should have been an EL 14 but proved not much of challenge. The chain wielding dragon adept did not fall to their gaze attack and they failed to Hide successfully.

The second room had four nagathas (CR 4) from {MMIV Monster Manual IV} and a spirit naga (CR 9) for an EL 10, more or less. I had hoped that maybe one or two characters would have been hit by the various poisons in the previous encounters, but no such luck. The naga was quickly dispatched after it revealed itself by casting a Fireball at the archer and the mystic theurge that had used a Dimension Door to get away from the fight. Unfortunately those two were exactly the ones that had very good protection from fire. Once visible, the spirit naga did not live long…

The above based on pages 94-96 for the Heyyab district, the Samaghar Bathhouse, and the Freemen’s Tower; page 258 for Ephesius stats and salamander stats; page 149 for the Black Jackal Society; pages 275-277 for the Black Jackal stats and the kobold assassin stats; page 11 for some backstory; all of this from the City of Brass Boxed Set by Casey Christofferson and Scott Greene, Necromancer Games.


Four nagathas CR 4, five Black Jackal of Set CR 8, a spirit naga CR 9, find a way around Ephesius CR 11, a Black Jackal of Set werejackal CR 12.

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