Thursday 7 December 2017

Encounters In the Forbidden Library

In my setting the university library is a sprawling palace, with multiple levels, secret chambers and other strange things. Frequently adventurers are hired to remove vermin or extract books for forbidden book vaults. The libraries are as vast as a city itself with levels lost and sealed off long forgotten. Some of the oldest vaults contain clay tablets which very few can read. The library is clearly out of control and magic students surviving is part of getting extra credit towards graduation. Safer students take years longer or hire adventurers to help.

d10 Librarian Missions 

1 Exterminate a type of vermin plaguing the books
2 A race of non humans have taken up residence and need exterminating
3 Find a particular book requested
4 Guard a scholar in a deep stack retrieval assignment
5 Find a unauthorised intruder entering the library
6 Guard repair crews mending shelves and doors
7 Recover obscure book long lost in the stacks
8 Find the cipher to translate a book found in code or a lost language
9 Find books now catalogued as forbidden and relocate them
10 Find unauthorised students sleeping and living in library

d10 Book Types

1 Cloth bound printed on paper with woodblocks 10gp xd10 value d6lb
2 Leather bound illuminated books on vellum and cloth 100gp xd10 value 3d4lb
3 Wooden cover with birch bark leaves 100gp xd10 value 4d4lb
4 Wooden slats affixed together into a book  100gp xd10 value  4d5lb
5 Bound hide with text burned or painted in barbarian style 30gp xd10 4d4lb
6 Tube scroll case with collection of scrolls inside 30pgx10 d8lb
7  Case with multiple scroll tubes 100gp xd10 4d4lb

8 Clay seal often printed from cylinder in clay 1gp xd10 d4lb 100 words
9 Clay tablet often a bit chipped  10gp xd10 3d4lb 300-1000 words, often sets incomplete
10 Clay tablet collection in box or carry case 100gp xd10 d4x100lb 1d10 x100 000 words

d10 Language

1 Modern common from the last century
2 Vintage common but still readable to most 100-400 years old
3 Old common difficult to read and understand 400-1000 years old
4 Imperial the language of the great ancient empire and scholars
5 Foreign contemporary work from last few centuries
6 Foreign antiquated language over a thousand years
7 Demi human work at least hundreds of years old
8 Humanoid work at least hundreds of years old
9 Pre human language of the monster empire still spoken in the underland
10 Languages of the outer planes alignments or inner planes elemental tongues

d10 Security

1 List in front of authorised persons permitted to see book often with hundreds of names over years
2 Book cover is lockable with  a high quality clasp 1in6 are trapped also with poison needle
3 Book pages drugged, poison or covered in spores making it hazardous to read
4 Book has a curse to protect it often featured prominently
5 Book has had enchantment to preserve it for so long
6 Book is a treasure with semiprecious stones and famous art +1d10 x1000gp

7 Book bound with a spirit or minor entity of protection
8  Book chained to shelf or lecturn
9 Book has own will and is difficult to destroy, possibly for a specific alignment
10 Book is inhabited by dangerous creature or is a shapeshifted creature

d10 Quick Subjects

1 Geography d6 1=local 2=historic 3=foriegn 4=geology 5=cave exploring 6=exploration
2 History d6 1=ancient 2=historic 3=prehuman 4=demihuman 5=humanoid 6=geneology
3 Natural History d6 1=botany 2=zoology 3=astronomy 4=sea monsters 5= dragons 6=monsters

4 Sciences d6 1=mathematics 2=geometry 3=lenses 4=alchemy 5=engineering 6=mechanics 
5 Occult d6 1=phrenology 2=astrology 3=mesmerism 4=necromancy 5=demonology 6=elements
6 Humanities d6 1=art theory 2=literature 3=music 4=poetry 5=diaries 6=philosophy
7 Reference d6 1=recipes 2=farmers guide 3=common law 4=tax law 5=almanac 6=travel guide
8 Medical knowledge d6 1=first aid 2=anatomy 3=apothecary 4=herbalism 5=poison  6=diseases
9 Business ledger d6 1=accounts 2=orders 3=clients 4=debits 5=trade records 6=stock records
10 Magic knowledge d6 1=alchemy 2=cults 3=religion 4 =druids 5=wizard 6=sorcerer
Many monsters in the library are peaceful and quiet and not very threatening.

d10 Strange Feature
1 Strange library guardians stop anyone leaving with property
2 Observatory chamber with giant astrolabe, star chart library and zodiac themed artwork
3 Sealed Vault: d4 1=forbidden books 2=to be sorted books 3=magic books 4=magic scrolls
4 Crypts of past scholars, former students and faculty some serve library as undead librarians
5 Portals to other planes often elemental plane or outer planes like hell
6 Doorway to the secret black school that teaches evil wizards for cost of soul by devil teachers
7 Gateway to secret alien library level full of strange pre human things
8 Library is haunted and gets an additional undead encounter when checks made
9 Map room with charts from many lands and times including treasure maps
10 Special Collection of books, maps and records on specialist possibly dangerous topic in vault

d100 Strange Encounters
01 Wounded apprentice was left by master to starve wounded and alone
02 Pale feral long lost students eating a rat or a cat
03 Insect men band have attracted some goblins, gremlins. animals and students
04 Forest Animal comes from haunted books and artworks wander about confused
05 Cloud of book and cloth eating moths are disturbed
06 See a bookworm munching on a book happily
07 Cobwebs covered in dust choke area with several giant spiders
08 Book gremlin and shelf rat colony up to mischief
09 Paper Wasp nest eat threats to books but use paper to make nests
 Shelf rat swarm, slower and more ponderous looking than sewer rats

11 Stray cat comes close to be friendly
12 Hellcat looking for scholarly types it can corrupt

13 Imp possibly invisible or spider or toad or baby goat form
14 Book Tarantula crawling on a shelf or floor 
15 Swarm of book tarantulas blocking passage 
16 Stirges live in the loft hungry for blood
17 Owl sitting on a shelf lives off rodents
18 Giant owl lives off vermin and reads books
19 Ravens, often know a single phrase and pick at books on shelves
20 Bat swarm blot out light and confusing when hundreds around
21 Giant bat hanging from ceiling and hungry
22 Giant toad likes to live here and eat smaller students
23 Giant hedgehog wanders about and likes to read
24 Giant doormouse likes reading and has own prefered filing system
25 Giant pigeons like food and talking about books over your shoulder but cant read
26 Titan Rat size of cave bear, angry and hungry
27 Giant rats in a swarm of 4d6
28 Centipedes 2d4 giant ones
29 Badgerman looking for books to read in his lair
30 Mimic pretending to be row of books
31 Mini Mimic or baby pretending to be a book but only a d4 bite 1HD
32 Shadow from a former student or book hunter
33 Phantom apparition of a librarian often make shhhh sound or give angry looks
34 Dwarf adventurer out checking engineering and condition of the place
35 Halfling looking for good fiction and recipies, lost for a few years now
36 Giant Moth often startled and spray choking dust everywhere
37 Yellow mould patch
38 Shrieker mushroom make annoying noises
39 Mushroom men whose civilization evolved here 
40 Ghost librarian will possess or age bad visitors
41 Spectral librarian disapproves of your choice of books and eats souls
42 Wraith of long lost book hunter now a life eating horror
43 Zombie students wandering the stacks mostly just looking
44 Skeleton student will be reading a book and tries to ignore intruders
45 Skull on a tabletop chatters as a alarm or is a talking one
46 Small race of hobbit sized ratmen have evolved here
47 Large race of rat beastmen exploring from sewers, possibly eating books
48 Goblin reading a book or trying to get high enough to reach one, placid sort
49 Elf librarian from the secret catalogue only rumoured to exist by normal librarians
50 Gnomes sitting about reading often in a group
51 A gentleman crow man in a suit is reading while smoking against the rules
52 The dragon librarian in human form that nobody knows in a dragon away from secret lair
53 A group of elderly librarians and militia guards reshelving books from a trolley 
54 Homeless students have built shelter in shelving have squatted a section
55 Giant Constrictor Snakes with hypnotism are said to lurk on tops of shelves
56 A homeless old man reading while boiling a tea pot on a fire he has built
57 A  elderly wizard who has been lost here for years probably cursed
58 Four apprentices out looking for a book for their master
59 A haughty master with apprentices and thugs here looking for a book, expects respect
60 Dark elves reading, will flee back to underland through a hole if chased
61 A wizened elder mystic troll looking for books they haven't read yet quietly 
62 A living oak tree fused into shelving, home of a dryad and her 2d4 charmed guests
63 A hellmouth opens and a horned devil puts some books back then leaves
64 A moody eccentric master looking for books like they own the place
65 A serpentfolk wizard is here reading peacefully of the lost continent
66 A wooden golem with shelves in chest cavity reshelving books
67 A bone golem part of a failed over zealous security system cancelled years ago
68 A giant swollen caterpillar man munching on books while smoking a hookah
69 Gremlins messing with the filing system
70 Kobold carpenters fixing shelving and painting over graffitti
71 Bored kobold teenagers writing gang graffiti and threats on walls
72 Carrion crawler dragging a paralysed kobold to lair
73 Buffalo sized purple worm baby out hunting
74 Octopus wizards have entered through the drains to plunder magical secrets
75 Charismatic evil wizard offers his help and betray everyone at some chance
76 Students making out in piles of books
77 Wildmen lost in the stacks chasing magical animals that came out of paintings
78 Magical Artwork d4 1=dream gate 2=magic portal 3=dungeon entry 4=magic people inside
79 Cultists in robes entered in secret must kill witnesses who see them
80 Knight and comic servant on a quest in library for a gosh awful long time
81 A bard is giving a reading to students,magical creatures and demihuman guests
82 Necromancer and his undead guards is pretty sure nobody who sees him should live
83 A white wizard of a secret order comes and offers aid and possibly a book as a gift
84 Brotherhood of bards on a mission for knowledge about a great crisis
85 Cultists seeking clues to the apocalypse all who see them must die
86 Guards on patrol looking for monsters or book thieves or trouble check your papers
87 Spectral minions patrol from long ago who dont recognise modern dating system
88 Spectral minion students reading and looking for books
89 Spectral minion librarians actually helpful can call spectral guard to evict troublemakers 
90 Golem carrying d4 1=brain in a jar 2=mummified corpse 3=old wizard 4=glass eyeball
91 Invisible Spirit bored and likes pranks, will try haunting at first then friendly then anoying
92 Succubi or incubi looking for nerdy gullible wizards to drain of souls
93 Students with donkey load of books to return after finishing course 
94 Chaos heretic seeks to join party and try and instill chaotic philosophy of cosmic entropy
95 A agent of Cosmic Law offers to teach you arcane skills if you serve pure order
96 A lich in all his glory with skeleton apprentices holding his robe and palanquin
97 A devil in human form sliping works of diabolic occult into the collections
98 Angelic being searching for holy records for some  reason
99 Sphynx with some cherubim servants invite you to dine and riddle with them
100 Dragon sleeping on pile of books, change into human mostly if awake

d100 Hazards and Wonders
01 Books fall from someone up high
02 Loose book stacks ready to collapse in avalanche if disturbed
03 Bookshelf ready to collapse if disturbed
04 Shelf will collapse like dominoes sending
05 A mass of dust is disturbed and falls causes choking
06 Whole are choked in spider webs and dust
07 Scattered corpses of robed students all seeking something called extra credit
08 Stoner drug cult of students meeting to get high invite you to join them
09 A fabulous fountain pouring fresh water out with pull of a spring lever
10 Book repair station featuring desk and various scribe supplies and craft tools

11 Magical Instruments playing ancient music all buy themselves
12 Story reading golem needs a audience who doesn't die so easily or want to leave

13 Nanny golem forgotten what her children look like adopts party and torments
14 Walking suits of armour patrol area on the hour
15 Animated talking weapons on wall mounts will attack if you don't have library ID
16 Invisible person reading book in lectern
17 Lectern with book chained on in a locked case lid, some important work inside
18 Deadfall of books made as deliberate messy noisy trap
19 Piles of books blanked out left by some word eating creature
20 Young necromancers trying to raise a dead spirit from corpse creating a shadow
21 A skeleton apprentice still trying to impress his lich master by bullying strangers
22 Crypt Thing here to teach you valuable life lesson by teleporting you deep into library
23 Collection of comfortable sofas d4 1=tea and cakes 2=corpses 3=students 4=mummies
24 Nanny Binks the goat messiah is here on a mission with some sons and a human party
25 Goblins selling snacks fresh from the sewer like rat on a stick and mushroom beer
26 A gathering of lost familiars will question party about missing masters
27 Fountain of wine d4 1=drunk students 2=satyrs 3=old drunk wizards 4=several corpses 
28 Fountain of water d4 1=elven attendant 2=water weird 3=water elemental 4=holy water
29 Fountain d4 1=healing water 2=fresh milk 3=tea 4=chilled water
30 Fountain strange rainbow potions with a tin cup chained to valve
31 Someone has built a tiny fort out of books 1in6 inhabited by children or kobolds
32 Representatives of the Kobold kingdom (three library levels) welcomes traders 
33 Student performers practicing their play would really enjoy a audience who would get us
34 Student wizards asleep with a keg, an imp familiar will negotiate on their behalf
35 Old person with poor eyesight and hearing looking for book, is d6+4 lv wizard
36 Wizards old and young playing chess or illusion wargames or other magic games
37 See a figure avoiding you crumble into mass of bookworms and disapear
38 See devils licking up words from a book to learn some useful torture skills
39 Young wizards making familiars battle for money, poor things look unhappy
40 See eyes from cracks between books where dark creeper and dark stalkers lurk
41 See a secret door open and a student steps in after saying some devils name 
42 Sealed water elemental in bottle sworn to put out a fire when lid opened
43 Strange robed man seems to be drinking words from book into him then vanishes
44 A book falls out of shelf in front of you, "How to serve Hell", includes soul contract
45 A black wizened hand offering you to take a book then it vanishes
46 Find a sealed letter addressed to you from hell offering you a wish if you sign
47 A lamia has established a lair where her charmed lovers read poems to her
48 A demonic looking floating head trailing dripping mass of organs behind it in the stacks
49 A banshee in the books likes to kill young handsome wizards
50 Chaos frogmen demons looking for archons and modrons to battle
51 Adorable goofy modrons on patrol for chaos frogmen demons that vex them so
52 Find dumped collection of corpses all killed same way such as headless or poisoned 
53 Grell wandering around stacks looking for smart guys to eat
54 Squid man mind wizard ans cultists looking to feed and find elder evil books
55 Wizard spy eyeball watching party for a while
56 Guardian Familiar in cat form guarding a relic or important book in display cabinet
57 Floor collapses into sub level weighed down by all the books
58 Hole in floor leading to burrow complex lined with shredded books lair to some creature
59 Displacer beasts on the hunt for humans or roaring for territory
60 Leucrotta walks the library tries to lure "lovers" up close to eat them or just their faces
61 Naga coiled up with some books and servants
62 Doppelganger students try to get close for ambush
63 Gargoyles guarding a collection of treasure on display
64 Vampire out for a read will be interested in meeting a new lover to eat
65 Incomplete golem on a slab surrounded bu books and occult symbols
66 Medusa lives in wing of library in area with lots of statutes
67 Stymphalian birds roosted in a area will shoot wing feathers at enemies on territory
68 Satyr scholar quite happy to talk with party and hang around, carries sandwiches
69 Archway with armed living statues ready to attack
70 Students listening to a scholar give a lecture
71 Secret society of wizards meeting in robes and masks not expecting strangers
72 Students discussing outlandish theory, totally alienated from common life
73 Tutor trying to convince student to try joining a cult for careerism
74 Students whispering about the secret black wizard school and where it is hidden
75 Rows of desks for students, scribes or copyists to work from mostly unused
76 Artwork exhibited in area with wine and cheese and artists
77 Noble person with armed guards with scholar looking for something
78 A book falls out of the shelf and open to a spread of significant pages
79 A group of assassins out to kill a student or anyone who sees an assassin ever
80 Students performing a ritual from a book they found and improvising a go
81 Cultists about to murder someone on portable altar and shrine in ritual
82 A book launch with scholars here for free wine and cheese and possibly a free book
83 Summoner diagram with trapped planar being d4 1=elemental 2=devil 3=demon 4=angel
84 Witches up to some research don't want any funny business while on a caper
85 Time traveling wizard just visiting and passing through
86 Gateway in artwork to another dimension such as the nightmare world
87 Magic Mirror makes evil clones who attack originals
88 Elemental djinn are meeting here to discuss dividing up the multiverse for the next aeon
89 Lonley spirit from a painting seeks a lover
90 Old scholar, farm boy and pirate on a quest and a bit paranoid
91 Pixies polymorphed into dancing books put on a show for a furious librarian
92 Wizards playing a game with illusions and a small crowd has gathered
93 Sorcerers here to pick on wizards for having to read books and study 
94 Young apprentices flirting for creepy teacher's attention
95 Gremlins throwing books at students for fun
96 Gremlins taunting librarian with noise making games
97 Golem has been reading silently for over 2000 years
98 Students looking for a missing friend came to library a few days ago 
99  Crawling zombie hand dragging a book somewhere
100 Black robed students on way to secret school for evil wizards

Might need more forgot about
Cave fishers
Sheet phantoms and ghouls

1 comment:

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