Friday 20 October 2023

Hex Crawl 23: Eryptos 3, Alchemy and Sorcery

Eryptos is also a hub of many different approaches to science and the supernatural. The sorcerous scene is dominated by two rival wizards. Both of them were apprentices of Kul-Gattur the Mahal, and feel very keenly that they have not yet reached the cosmic heights of their master's understanding.

Syrioth, level 9 - A gaunt woman about 40, dark skin and dyed golden hair, antique garments that almost form a costume, eyes hollow and staring from madness, nonetheless attentive and prone to insightful if paranoiac observations. She has few if any boundaries, and casts spells with a vulture-headed golden crook.

Abru the Obscurer, level 10 - A tall, muscular man about 45, light olive skin, bald with henna-dyed braids on the side. He wears heavy dark robes cut from foreign cloth, and has a hairless pet cat (a familiar, perhaps?) who is always under his feet. Abru's reputation is aloof and secretive with sparks of curiosity. He projects a forceful gaze, and a no-nonsense manner. His spellcasting uses a ponderous ring of lead and silver that spans the first three knuckles of his left hand.

The influence of these two is such that other would-be wizards, warlocks, and dabblers have either left town or keep their profile very low. Each of them has selected favorites in the court intrigue but sees no profit in pursuing it.

It is also worth mentioning the clandestine shop of magical artifacts that can be found behind a door round the back of a shop that sells discs of dried meat. Knock five times rapidly; a door opens, a wary eye looks out. The shop itself is lined with dusty shelves in a richly appointed miniature salon whose air is gummy with perfume. It's run by an effusive Dwarf of Yagan known as Vinnit. The shop will have 2d4 minor magic items and d4-1 major magic items for sale at standard prices plus a 20% markup. Vinnit will also buy wondrous objects, to the limits of his treasury, which is about 5000 gold. 

Finally, there is a Street of Alchemists filled with various quacksalvers and only two or three of the real deal. One of these is Zagum, who is secretly connected to the Scarab Society, and is constantly on the lookout for new substances and recipes. He certainly found these in abundance when the Band of Bronze opened up the dank halls of the Sinister Shroom, and even voyaged to those caverns to pick up samples of biomass and tantalizing glimpses of the Shroom's own records on the matter of the creation of semi-vegetative life through various serums and oozes.

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