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Molcrum and the Mage
Author: Keven Simmons
System: AD&D 2nd Edition
Requirements: characters level 6-10
Many years ago, in the duchy of Gersot, a wizard was exiled by the duke for what were documented as "blatant acts of cruelty and evil". Exactly what these acts were was not recorded although the peasants who farmed the Duke's lands believed it involved demon worship.
Graphic: Second Floor
Graphic: First Floor
This module is designed for use with the AD&D(tm) game from TSR, Inc. and contains references to trademarks
and/or copyrighted material owned by that company. The original portions of this works are (c) copyright 1994 by
Keven Simmons and is being offered free of charge under the following conditions:
- You may not sell this material for your own profit.
- If this material is redistributed, either electronically or in printed form, it must include this copyright notice.
- You may modify details of this material for your own purposes, but only the original can be redistributed.
Correspondence regarding this material can be sent via U.S. Post to:
Keven Simmons, POB 351, Sherburne NY 13460 or via the internet to: email@example.com
This material may contain references to non-TSR monsters, spells and magic items. If you would like information on
non-standard spells or items used in this module, write or e-mail me at the above addresses. I will be happy to
share whatever information I can.
Feel free to make modifications as you deem necessary in order to make the module playable in your campaign.
If the GIF-format maps for this adventure were not included, or you are unable to read them, I will provide paper
copies free of charge to anyone who sends a self-addressed, stamped envelope to the address above. Please mention
the module name (and version number if applicable) when requesting maps.
abbreviations and other notations used:
- th or thaco = to hit armor class 0
- hd = hit dice
- hp = hit points
- ac = armor class
- d = damage
- mr = magic resistance
- str = strength
- con = constitution
- dex = dexterity
- int = intelligence
- wis = wisdom
- chr = charisma
- pp = pick pockets
- ol = open locks
- frt = find / remove traps
- hs = hide in shadows
- ms = move silently
- hn = hear noise
- cw = climb walls
- rl = read languages
Some spells, magic items or monsters may have a notation following them similar to this: find familiar [P 134].
The information in the brackets is a book and page number reference for locating the item's description. The following
are the book abbreviations used in these references:
- P = Player's Handbook (2nd edition, first printing)
- T = Tome of Magic
- D = Dungeon Master's Guide
- A = Unearthed Arcana
- M = Monster Manual
- F = Fiend Folio
- S = Monster Manual II (first edition)
- C = Creature Catalog Supplements
- K = my own compiled reference manuals
If you eventually use this module, I would like to hear how it turned out.
Many years ago, in the duchy of Gersot, a wizard was exiled by the duke for what were documented as "blatant acts of cruelty and evil". Exactly what these acts were was not recorded although the peasants who farmed the Duke's lands believed it involved demon worship. Filantis, the wizard, swore an oath that he would return one day to take out his vengeance on the Gersot family for the shame inflicted upon him. More than 150 years have passed since that time and the story of Filantis has passed into local legend. There are even some who question the truth of the story, at least that is, until now.
About a month ago, Evan Gersot, the current duke, granted audience to a messenger (a polymorphed ogre mage) who said he bore greeting from an old acquaintance of the Gersot family. When he was brought before the duke, he said that his master, the great and powerful arch-mage Filantis, intended on arriving in three days time to claim the duchy of Gersot as his own and that the duke and his family will at that time bow down before him and beg for undeserved mercy. The duke had the messenger locked in one of the seldom used dungeon cells until the truth of his message could be verified, but when the door was later opened, the messenger had vanished (via gaseous form) without a trace. Rather than take any chances, Evan set more guards on duty and sent the castle staff into the village. After being warned of the possible threat, many of the villagers left the area, or sent the women and children away to the safety of nearby towns.
Exactly three days later, a large band of ogres appeared out of the bordering woods and started to sack the village. They set fire to the buildings and killed any peasants that were brave (or foolish) enough to stand against them. The Duke immediate sent his men to deal with the attack and mounted his faithful companion Greldenarganshaum, a young brass dragon he had befriended during his adventuring days. As they took to the air, they saw a terrible sight. Rising from the trees was huge monstrous beast standing nearly 20' tall. It resembled a centaur, with the body of a horse, a human torso and the head of a bull. In place of arms were whip-like tentacles which it used to flay attackers, or to grab and crush them. The creature swept aside the Duke's men with hardly a second thought, and those that were not crushed beneath its hoofs were killed with bolts of energy which shot from the creature's glowing red eyes.
The Duke and Greldenarganshaum fought the beast as best they could, but it moved with unnatural speed and gave them no quarter. Evan fell to the ground when Greldenarganshaum was finally killed, and as he rose, the beast lashed out and captured him in one of its tentacles. A man dressed in the robes of a wizard then appeared on the scene and apparently commanded the beast to follow him. Carrying a glowing scepter in one hand, the wizard walked to the gates of the castle while the beast followed behind with the now limp form of the Duke wrapped in its tentacle.
Enter the Party
The adventurers are approached by a young man claiming to be Lav Gersot, son of the Duke of Gersot. He says that he has heard of the adventurers previous exploits and believes that they might be able to regain his castle and lands for him. The adventurers will have heard rumors of the trouble at Gersot but the tales had been wild and unbelievable. Lav will relate the story to them as he heard it from one of the peasants who escaped the slaughter that day. He also knows the story of Filantis' banishment and threat made so many years ago, but whether this is indeed the evil wizard or some pretender he does not know for sure. Neither does he care, for whoever it is, they have taken over his lands and castle and probably killed his father. The only reason he escaped the same fate was that he was away attending school in a nearby city when it happened. He cannot promise the adventurers anything other than hope of whatever reward he can give them after he reclaims his castle and whatever is left of the treasury.
The time it take to get to Gersot depends on where in the campaign world it has been placed, and what modes of transportation are available to the party to use. Wherever it is, as the party gets closer, the rumors concerning the Duchy become more and more frequent. About 15 miles from Gersot lies the small village of Locklear. While at the inn at Locklear, which is called The Black Cock, the adventurers will be able to hear eyewitness accounts of the sack of Gersot and the current state of affairs there. Shortly after Filantis took the castle, he came to Locklear with several ogres and demanded that a wagon load of food be brought to the castle every week. He then showed them what would happen if they "forgot" to follow his orders by holding aloft a glowing rod and speaking a few words in a strange language. Suddenly, the huge beast which Filantis called Molcrum appeared through the trees, trampled a cottage into a pile of mud and sticks and then killed all the livestock with blasts of energy which shot from his eyes.
Filantis has never been back to Locklear since that first visit and yet the mage somehow knows what is going on in the village and has twice retaliated when the villagers attempted to short-change their weekly delivery. The villagers attributed his knowledge to his magical powers, when in fact it is a spy that Filantis has planted that is supplying him with information. The spy appears to be a young boy about 12 years old by the name of Rald who works in the stables of the Black Cock and cleans up the tavern when necessary. He is actually a polymorphed ogre mage and reports anything of interest to Filantis, usually traveling in gaseous form to avoid detection. He appeared in the village shortly after the raid, claiming to be the orphaned son of one of the Gersot villagers. He will definitely report the advent of adventurers to his master, especially if Lav Gersot's identity is revealed. It is highly unlikely that the party will be able to divine Rald's secret and thus it is very likely that Filantis will be aware of the party's presence and possibly their intentions as well.
When the party approaches Gersot castle, the first thing they will notice is Molcrum. Regardless of whether Filantis has been warned of the party's approach, Molcrum will be standing at attention outside the castle gates. His current orders are to prevent anyone from entering the castle. There are eight ogres on the battlements (two per wall) who are standing watch and will raise the alarm should they spot anyone approaching. If Filantis has been warned of the party's presence, the ogres will be more alert and the response to an alarm will be quicker (about 7 rounds), otherwise it will be closer to 12 rounds before Filantis and the other ogres respond to an alarm.
Filantis' plan of defense vs. a direct assault is to command Molcrum and cast support spells from the battlements while the ogres hurl spears. He might also send an ogre mage or two out (flying and invisible) to attack the party from behind but will keep most of his nasties inside the walls. Should Molcrum be defeated or bypassed and the outer walls breached, Filantis will fall back to the castle proper accompanied by two ogre magi and Grelda, the annis. They will set up a line of defense in the main hall (area #5) and wait for the intruders to enter. Should he need to retreat further, he will move upstairs with Grelda.
If the PCs manage to infiltrate the castle, either by stealth or cunning, without alerting the inhabitants to their presence, (e.g. sneaking over the walls at night, hiding in the wagons delivering food, polymorphed as some unobtrusive creatures, etc.), then there will be eight (8) ogres and one ogre mage on duty on the battlements. The other ogres will be found scattered throughout areas 10-14, the ogre magi will be in areas 6-9, and Grelda will be upstairs with Filantis.
Filantis has waited a long time to claim the Gersot castle and he will not give it up without a fight. Unless the odds are overwhelming (3 to 1 or more), he will continue to fight, even unto death. If a member of the Gersot family is involved with the battle, he will fight to the death regardless of the
odds and will direct most of his efforts toward killing them.
When (if) the party is successful in their struggle to reclaim the keep, they will find Duke Evan Gersot in the dungeon, very near death from torture. As their reward for helping them, the Gersot family will give to the party a small chest of high quality gems worth a total of 35,000gp. If the Duke's sword is recovered from the ogre mage he would like it returned, but the party is free to keep any of Filantis' other belongings. If any of Filantis' minions escaped, it is unlikely that they will return to bother either the Gersot family or the PCs. If Filantis somehow escapes the adventure alive, he will definitely come looking for revenge, both on the Gersot family, and on the PCs that thwarted his plans.
(1) Main Gates
The portcullis in front of doors are opened from a small winch closet just off the entryway. It will take one person 5 rounds to open completely, half that if two people work together. There is not enough room in the closet for more than two people. The portcullis could be raised from outside if two people both make their "bend bars/lift gate" roll simultaneously. The large double doors are 1 foot thick and reinforced with horizontal iron bands. The walls are 20 feet high, plus merlons. Wooden stairs allow access to the walls from inside the compound. The portcullis is kept down, the doors shut and barred, and the battlements are patrolled by 4 ogres and 1 ogre mage.
(2) Smithy / Armory
Unused since Filantis arrived, the smithy hold a forge, anvil and various metal working implements. Several wooden crates hold a dozen average quality short swords packed in straw.
Houses Filantis' horse as well as several draft horses. The ogres do not ride horses, although they have been known to eat one on occasion.
(4) Entry Hall
Stone benches line the walls, and the busts of former Gersot Dukes once stood on pedestals in between the benches. Filantis has done nothing to damage the castle or its furnishings (it is his after all), but all of these busts, as well as any paintings of the Gersot family found elsewhere in the house have been destroyed.
(5) Great Hall
Long tables run the length of the room with the royal table at the far end. This is where Filantis will retreat to should the walls be breached. Otherwise there may be several ogres and an ogre mage or two here.
(6-9) Guest Rooms
These comfortable rooms now serve as the home of the ogre magi.
(10a-j) Servants' and guards' quarters
These small rooms now house Filantis' ogre troops and thus are in terrible condition. The beds are far too small to accommodate the ogres' bulk and many have collapsed.
(11) Dry Storage
This storage room hold the supplies sent by the village of Locklear such as flour, meal, spices, dried vegetables, potatoes, wine, etc.
The kitchen is in a state of considerable disarray. The ogres have ransacked the place in an effort to uncover any food or wine.
(13) Servants' entrance
This small entryway holds ransacked cloaks, boots, saddle bags, etc. This is where the food deliveries are brought into the castle.
(14) Servants' dining
Because this now serves as the ogres' common room, it is also in a bit of a shambles.
(16) Filantis' library
This room, which was once a study, has been converted into a library and is where Filantis conducts his research for the time being. Stacked on tables and chairs are books on magical theory, use of components, rules for research, etc. all of which are of great value to a wizard. Many have (explosive runes) on them and many others have (Nystul's aura). A considerable number of them deal with the summoning and control of demons.
(17) Filantis bedroom
The door is Fire Trapped. There is a (fire trapped) chest that contains his monetary treasure (17,500gp). A second, larger chest, which has been (wizard locked) contains his spellbooks (or at least a complete copy). All of these book have (explosive runes) placed in them at random pages. Another book which does not appear to be a spellbook is a treatise written by Filantis which documents his knowledge of the beast, Molcrum, and of the rod that commands him. This book does not have Explosive Runes on it, but there is a (secret page) which looks like an illustration of the rod. Concealed by the spell are the instruction for the destruction of the rod of Molcrum.
This room is still a shambles following Filantis search for the castle treasury. He plans to eventually straighten it up again but has not had the inclination recently to do it.
This room contains books on various mundane topics such as weather, philosophy, religion, etc. as well as a very good set of maps of the local area. This room shows evidence of being thoroughly searched, although Filantis has put most of the furnishings and books back into some semblance of order. After sorting through the books and maps more carefully, he plans on getting rid of the useless items, and moving his own books into it the room.
(20) Master bedroom
The room has been ransacked, but the castle treasury has miraculously escaped detection (which has galled Filantis to no end). The valuables and heirlooms of the Gersot family are hidden in a secret 5'x5' cache which extends into the outer battlement wall. The door to this is accessible from inside one of the two large, standing wardrobes. The treasure is stored in several unlocked chests and consists primarily of gems and platinum totaling 175,000gp. There is also a large selection of jewelry with a total worth of 75,000gp. None of the items are magical.
(21) Royal bedroom
Now the room of the annis Grelda.
(22) Royal bedroom
This room used to be Lav Gersot`s but is currently unoccupied. It has been searched thoroughly by Filantis and Grelda as they attempted to find the Gersot treasury and so most of the furnishings have been left scattered about the floor.
(23) Greldenarganshaum`s former lair:
Evan Gersot had a significant portion of the second floor of the castle modified to accommodate Greldenarganshaum. The southern section has no roof, which allowed the dragon to bask in the sun. The western section is covered by a wooden frame and thatch roof which provided shelter when necessary. A narrow stone stair allows access to the battlements.
Deserted except for Evan Gersot who lies unconscious in one of the cells
The ogres are Filantis` hirelings. They have no particular loyalty to him, but they all fear his power, including the ogre magi. He pays them little, but keeps them clothed and fed and allows them free reign during any raids. It is primarily this last item, and the fact that he can protect them from any consequences of their pillaging that keeps them working for him.
Grelda, the annis has agreed serve him in the hopes that she might learn some of the ways of magic. She is particularly interested in Filantis` ability to make contact with the outer planes and hopes someday to be able to summon creatures from there to do her bidding. Her loyalty to Filantis is not very strong, and she will not sacrifice her life to protect him. If things start to look bad for her, she will attempt to escape the battle with her life.
||damage: 1-8 + 2 (spiked clubs) or 1-10
||Ogre Magi (6):
||damage: bw + 2 or 1-12
||use 2 handed sword (1-10/3-18)
||at will: fly (12 turns/day), invisibility, darkness 10 foot radius, polymorph to humanoid, regenerate 1 hp/r
||1x/day: charm person, sleep, gaseous form, cone of cold damage: 8d8
||Two of the Ogre Magi serve as Filantis` bodyguards and he has given them each some special items.
||1) [+1] broadsword of sharpness (originally the Duke`s), oil of fiery burning, potion of fire resistance
||2) grounding oil, potion of missile protection, dagger with 6 uses of poison (-2 save, convulsions for 1-6r)
||damage: 1-8+8 / 1-8+8 / 2-8+1
||oil of immobility, dust of forgetfulness
||strength of a hill giant (effective 19)
||if all 3 attacks hit then she has grappled and does automatic damage next round, must have a greater strength to break free.
||100% mr vs. illusion/phantasm magic
The origins of the beast known as Molcrum are shrouded in mystery. The most common belief is that he was once the steed of one of the ancient demon lords, but for which is not know. Molcrum is considered to be a true demon; his home plane is the Abyss and when he is killed on the prime material plane, his body turns to noxious gasses and his spirit returns to the Abyss where he must spend 7 years reforming a body. At some point in his distant past, his truename was discovered and his spirit was bound to a rod made of dark wood about 3 feet long with a glowing bone tripod-like attachment at the top. Any creature of at least low intelligence and evil alignment can use the rod to summon Molcrum from the Abyss and command him to perform whatever task they so desire (unless he is in the stages of reforming after being destroyed on the prime material plane). The rod can also be used to send him back to the Abyss at any time. Any creature of neutral alignment who attempts to use the rod will be struck for 2-12 points of damage, and any good creature will suffer 4-24 points (these alignments may touch the rod, they just can`t use it).
The rod is considered to be an artifact and as such can only be destroyed in a specific manner. It must be broken into three pieces in the Abyss by a chaotic evil (demi)human. Each piece must then be carried to one of the three outer planes of Good in the hands of a (demi)human of the same alignment; the head must be taken to the plane of Lawful good, the middle to the plane of neutral good, and the bottom to the plane of chaotic good. When this is accomplished, Molcrum will be forever destroyed as will the pieces of the rod. Should the rod be broken and the pieces not all transported to the proper plane, Molcrum will be released from his bondage until either destruction of the rod is completed, or until the three pieces are reunited.
||damage 1-12 / 1-12 / 4-24 / 4-24 (arms & hooves)
||attacks: arm-whip 1-12 / 1-12 or constrict for 1-8 / round (17 strength to break free)
||butt vs. large only 6-36 or 6pt. structural damage (no other attacks possible)
||eye blast 4-32, 30" range, save vs. breath for half, extends into ethereal plane, must roll a hit
||mr: 70% - half damage from cold, fire, electricity, gasses
||can see invisible, ethereal, out of phase, displaced creatures (but not successfully hidden thieves)
||hit by [+1] or better
||move: 36" / can teleport and travel ethereally
|Filantis 11th level Magic User half-elf chaotic evil
||armor: [+3] leather
||weapons: staff sling (2-8/3-9), 8 [+2] bullets, staff
||wand of illusion (28, command word: ingidat)
||figurine of wondrous power, elephant(asiatic)
||3 beads of force
||scroll written at 18th level of effect: prot. normal missiles / tongues(reversed) / vanish / maze / monster summoning VI / wish
||number per day: 4
|alarm [P 131], balance [K 35], color spray [P 132], enlarge (r) [P 133], friends [P 134], hypnotism [P 135], lasting breath [T 19], Nystul`s magic aura [P 136], phantasmal force [P 137], shield [P 147], spectral ears [K 37], spectral eyes [K 37], taunt [P 138], ventriloquism [P 139]
||number per day: 4
|alter self [P 139], clear sight [K 60], hypnotic pattern [P 142], insatiable thirst [T 21], know alignment (r) [P 143], locate object (r) [P 143], Melf`s acid arrow [P 144], plague [M 14], scare [P 145], skeletal hands [K 37], stinking cloud [P 145], summon swarm [P 146], Tasha`s uncontrollable laughter [P 146], vocalize [A 54]
||number per day: 4
|alacrity [T 24], blink [P 147], dispel magic [P 148], explosive runes [P 148], fireball [P 149], flame arrow [P 149], Leomund`s tiny hut [P 151], lightwall [K 54], monster summoning I [P 151], numbness [K 29], protection from evil 10` (r) [P 152], slow [P 153], spectral force [P 153], vampiric touch [P 153]
||number per day: 3
|acid rainstorm [K 55], confusion [P 154], detect scrying [P 155], dimension door [P 155], fire charm [P 158], fire trap [P 158], fumble [P 158], illusionary wall [P 159], massmorph [P 160], monster summoning II [P 160], plant growth [P 161], shout [P 163]
||number per day: 3
|advanced illusion [P 164], avoidance (r) [P 165], Bigby`s interposing hand [P 165], cloudkill [P 166], contact other plane [P 167], incantation of elemental domination [K 57], magic jar [P 169], monster summoning III [P 170], projected image [P 180], sending [P 171], summon shadow [P 171], vampiric dagger [K 62]