Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Ogress of Anubis (Introduction)

I'm going to postpone (until tomorrow) the encounter key promised for today in Monday's map post. Today I'm posting the introduction/background and I'll post the encounter key tomorrow.

Hearing of the reknown of the PCs, a man named Ako and his brother Azibo seek them out to enlist their aid in ridding the world of a growing evil.

The following may be read directly to the players, or may be re-interpretted by the DM to fit an ongoing campaign:

For years, the high priest Kemosiri ran the Temple of Ptah in the lower plains region. He was a sober and serious man. Many considered his devotion to the gods his greatest asset. He was as understanding as a priest could be, but no more than was absolutely necessary. He sacrificed only those that gave themself willingly, and only when tradition and ceremony dictated it. The wealth accumulated by the temple was modest, as was Kemosiri’s lifestyle. His daughter Azeneth, however, is another story.

Azeneth believed the life of the high priest (or priestess) should be as comfortable as that of the kings and the gods. She spoke her contempt for her father’s “weakness” loudly and publicly, almost from the time she learned to talk. As she neared her teens, she made it known her plan was to supplant her father and become high priestess of the temple, sometimes claiming it was her place as the incarnation of the goddess Nekhbet.

Many say Azeneth has the power to command serpents, and it was she who sent the asp that killed Kemosiri. Regardless, she siezed her position as high priestess of the temple and set about her accumulation of power and wealth.

Recently, children from the villages around the temple have begun to disappear. Rumors abound that Azeneth is sacrificing them and cannibalizing them because she believes this will make her wealthier, more powerful, and more divine. The people of the villages have begun to refer to the temple as the temple of the “ogress of Anubis,”—believing Anubis himself made this woman a monster and commanded her to consume the children she sacrifices.

Ako’s children Femi and Tumaini have recently disappeared, as has Azibo’s daughter Mandisa. The men fear it may be too late to save any of them. They both know that Azeneth is too powerful for either of them to face without help. They beg of you to help end this reign of fear and terror, and try to return their children alive... if it is in the will of the gods.

They have nothing to offer you as a reward, but know that Azeneth has treasure; surely, the gods will not hold it against you for taking Azeneth’s wealth. They also believe her father’s tomb is below the temple and that it contains considerable wealth. However, they both believe that Kemosiri was a righteous man, and robbing his tomb may bring a curse upon you.

Ako and Azibo will join you should you choose to accept their request. If you decline, and the only chance they have to save their children is to go it alone, they will do that... even if it means their own death.

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