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This is the thread that will contain the plaintext draft(s) of the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide.

This space reserved for Adventure B.

How to Use This Guide:

The Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Adventure Guides are a completely fan-run project to inject a deeper sense of narrative into the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game (PACG). While each PACG Adventure Path takes players on an epic campaign, through which they'll develop their characters, choose a specialization, and refine their decks with new allies and equipment, the story text on the cards is disappointingly brief for people who haven't played the corresponding RPG Adventure Path. Who are these villains and why are we fighting them? What is this legendary loot I just received? What is this location, and why am I here? The Adventure Guide has the answers.

Previous Adventure Guides were written in a narrative style that some players loved and others loved less. In those guides, the story was developed in blocks of text to be read before and after each scenario, with dialogue and direct references to the actions of the player characters. The Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide is different. Following the modular format of the Adventure 1 and the tomb-exploring theme of the campaign, this Adventure Guide is written in the style of a field journal belonging to an archaeologist or ethnographer. It leaves the action to the players and focuses more on expanding the setting.

The Adventure Guide is split into two major sections: the Adventure Companion and the Glossary. In the Adventure Companion, you will find text to read before and after each Scenario, and you will also find depictions of the scenario-specific Villains, Henchmen and Boons. One major change is that the text is now set up to be read while you play. Each "entry" in the field journal has instructions on when to read it, usually when first encountering or after defeating/acquiring a certain Bane or Boon.

The Glossary contains entries for specific Banes and Boons that might appear at any point in your campaign. When you acquire or defeat a card, if you'd like to know more about it, check the Glossary for an entry. The Glossary also has more information on the setting of Mummy's Mask.

Now dust off your whips and get ready for some action archaeology!


Adventure Path: Mummy's Mask prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)

Land of Forgotten Pharaohs
As one of the oldest civilizations on Golarion, Osirion is a land of extremes. Near the life-giving River Sphinx, culture flourishes. Sothis, built around a colossal beetle husk where the great river meets the Swells of Gozreh and the Inner Sea, has been the seat of Osirian rule for millennia and is now the home of the progressive Pharaoh Khemet III. In the flood plains along the river’s western tributary, the Crook, can be found Ipeq, seat of Osirion’s standing military. Tephu hides among the reeds of the Sphinx Basin and is home to Osirion’s greatest scribes and historians. And Wati, located where the waters of the Crook and Asp mingle to form the great river’s wellspring, sees to the desert nation’s bustling funerary trade, for none living in Osirion are honored as highly as their dead.

Away from the river, however, all is burning dust and death. In the vast desert wastes and salt hills that characterize most of northeastern region of the wild continent of Garund, survival is far from guaranteed. Camel-trains and pyramidal tombs are among the only traces of civilization to be found in Osirion’s deserts. They are not, however, devoid of life, for monsters thrive among the dunes, from the lesser spawn of Rovagug, sire to Festering Ulunat whose slaying at the dawn of the Age of Destiny gave rise to the great Pharaonic dynasties, to elementals of influence and ferocity unknown in any of the other lands of Golarion. Reptiles and great insects creep in the shadows or burrow beneath the dunes, dripping with venom, while the well-preserved dead and tomb guardians stand sentinel over the untold riches that ever draw adventurers to the Scorpion Coast...and to their anonymous deaths among the shifting sands.


God-Kings of Osirion
The rulers of Osirion, called in Osiriani Pharaoh or God-King, are believed to be half-divine scions of the ancient Osirian gods and of Nethys, who was a contemporary and companion of Azghaad the All-Seeing, the First Pharaoh and slayer of the colossal beetle Ulunat, prior to Nethys’ ascension to divinity. Both Azghaad and his successor, the Naga Pharaoh, were granted power and prescience by the all-knowing Nethys, although what Azghaad used for the good of Golarion drove the Naga Pharaoh to madness and destruction. The First Age of Osirion gave rise to the Jetrieti and An-Hepsu dynasties and came to an end under the reign of Djederet II, a devotee of Nethys who founded the cities of Tephu, Wati and An. The First Age of Osirion lasted from -3470 to -1498 AR.

The Second Age of Osirion began with the rule of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension, who held the then-divided desert nation together with the power of an unbreakable pact. During their reign, Osirion enjoyed its apex of wealth and power. The Pharaoh of Numbers used the mystical art of numerology to design arcane monuments and tombs, the Radiant Pharaoh Ankana was a conjurer to rival the rune-mages of Thassilon, the Fiend Pharaoh Hetshepsu was a shrewd strategist with purported ties to the Infernal House Thrune of Cheliax, and Anok Fero, the Cerulean Pharaoh, was said to be in possession of all the secrets of past and future.

An era of decadence followed the sudden deaths of the Pharaohs of Ascension, and in 1532 AR Osirion was absorbed into the militant Empire of Kelesh. The Keleshite Interregnum lasted over 3,000 years and was a period of aggressive erasure of Osirian culture, such that there are few now who still worship the Old Gods of Set, Horus and the like. Despite the defacing of some monuments, however, the proud Osirians have endured, and the revival of the pharaonic line in 4609 AR with Khemet I has triggered a resurgence of the old ways with an eye toward the future.

When discussing the ancient Pharaohs of Osirion, it is often impossible to separate history from mythology. For example, it’s told that the Cerulean Pharaoh Anok Fero once transformed into a thousand blue snakes to devour some tax collectors who had angered him. This same pharaoh is said to have developed such a fondness for a blue dragon hatchling, Tukanem-Hanam, that he had the creature slain and mummified to be his protector in the afterlife. Another popular story describes a ruler known only as the Sky Pharaoh (the name and reign of this pharaoh vary depending on who is telling the story, with the Sky Pharaoh’s identity often attributed to the local favorite or bogeyman; some accounts maintain that the Sky Pharaoh’s rule was so fearful that his true name has been deliberately erased from history). According to this colorful history, the Sky Pharaoh was insanely jealous of tomb robbers and, to protect his grave goods, had himself interred in a magically flying pyramid. The moment the tomb was sealed, it rose above the sands and took its place among the clouds, untouched for six millennia. There are even those who claim that the Sky Pharaoh never truly died but that he still waits, secure in his flying fortress, for his chance to retake the throne of Osirion. The veracity of this tall tale can be tested with a simple glance skyward, as nowhere in the blazing vault above Osirion can be seen any kind of floating pyramid, but this doesn’t prevent people from believing in their magical sky king.


The Ruby Prince
In 4707 AR, the Ruby Prince Khemet III of the Forthbringer dynasty, current Pharaoh of Osirion, instituted a visionary economic policy that put the newly independent nation back on the map. His reasoning followed a simple pattern:

1) A common belief among Ancient Osirians was that anything interred within a person’s tomb would be available to that person in the afterlife. Anubis, the Osirian judge of the dead, and Pharasma, Lady of Graves, would judge the deceased’s station in the afterlife based on the material trappings of their tomb. As a result, Osirion’s tombs are among the wealthiest in the world, filled with expensive jewelry, antiques, powerful artifacts, and mummified guardians.

2) In such conditions, tomb-robbing will always occur.

3) Most items procured in tomb-raiding expeditions are not kept by the adventurers who found them. Many adventurers keep only the few most powerful artifacts and immediately sell the rest as loot. There is much profit to be had for historians, antiquers, and the common merchant if these transactions occur out in the open instead of on the black market.

Realising this, the Ruby Prince issued a formal decree opening up all of Osirion’s tombs to exploration, and adventurers, Osirionologists and financiers have flooded into the desert nation as a result. Not all of the native Osirions support this policy, particularly the Church of Pharasma, but Khemet III is seen as a divine authority in the realm; his word is law.

One of the most highly anticipated tomb-openings is the Necropolis at Wati, the remains of an entire city destroyed by the Plague of Madness and consecrated in the name of the Lady of Graves in 2953 AR. Entire city blocks are treated as tombs, untouched for thousands of years, and can now be explored. In a few days, the Church of Pharasma will be hosting a lottery to fairly distribute buildings in the Necropolis among registered explorers, and all the adventurers in Golarion are crossing the nation’s deadly sands to get a crack at the Half-City’s buried secrets.



Adventure B: Cross the Pharaoh’s Land prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Through the Desert
For those who would visit Wati the Half-City, a long, grueling westward journey awaits. Those travelers lucky enough to join a caravan face days of burning sun, scouring sandstorms, capricious elementals, and deadly predators. Those who wander from the established routes face certain death amongst the parched dunes. But for many, Wati’s riches--and its secrets--are worth any risk.


Now read the Adventure card….


Scenario B-1: All That Glitters Begets Gold prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Shining Mountains
The gold and jewels enriching Osirion’s tombs had to come from somewhere, and as it turns out, there’s great wealth to be found in the inhospitable desert. The oldest and most prosperous of Osirion’s mines can be found in the Shining Mountains, located between the Underdunes and the Salt Hills west of the Scorpion Coast.


Now read the scenario card….


Mining Construct (read when encountering)
The chief form of labor in the Shining Mountains mines is automaton. Mining constructs are tireless, easily replaced, and immune to the potent venoms employed by most of Osirion’s native flora and fauna. The best thing about them is that they will follow their controller’s orders without question, even if those orders send them into suicidally unsafe working conditions. They can even be modified to act as sentinels, protecting the mines from would-be thieves.

Unfortunately, it appears that these particular constructs are either too stupid to distinguish friend from foe or have had their loyalty swayed. They now attack anything living that wanders into their vicinity; the only sensible thing to do is recycle them for scrap.


Giant Sand Eel (read when encountering)
Sand eels are similar to normal desert snakes except in one regard: while snakes slither along the surface, sand eels are equipped with special cilia that allow them to dart straight across and even through their sandy environment. This makes them particularly hard to corner, giving rise to the popular phrase “slippery like a sand eel.” While smaller sand eels devour birds, eggs, and rodents, similar to their serpentine cousins, the largest of their kind prey on dhabbas, porcupines and humanoids. This specimen appears to have descended into the mines to escape the heat of the surface and, while it has taken advantage of the chaos to feed on some of the bodies of the miners, is otherwise unrelated to the goings-on in the mine.


Bonecrusher Master (read after defeating)
Gnolls, also known as hyenafolk, are among the most irritating of Garund’s intelligent races, leading aggressive slave-raids and scavenging expeditions along all major travel routes. The Bonecrusher pack are the largest and most vicious gnoll community to be found between Wati and the Scorpion Coast. It appears their leader found a way to redirect the loyalty of the Shining Mountain mining constructs and used them to slaughter their human overseers. Since then, he’s used them as soldiers and servants, using this newly acquired slave labor to elevate his own status as a leader. The filthy dog had to be put down.


Falsin Deek and Hadden Hoppert (read after acquiring)
The Aspis Consortium is an infamous (re)seller of Osirian “artifacts and antiquities,” many of which bear a striking resemblance to the cheap, common knick-knacks sold in bulk to tourists at any port of note along the Scorpion Coast. With the official opening of Osirion’s tombs, the Consortium has branched out into the buying and selling of legitimate tomb-goods. No matter how rare or powerful an item actually is, there’s always someone willing to buy it for more than it’s worth.

Falsin Deek oversees the Consortium’s mining and smuggling operations across Osirion. As an earth-wizard, he is an expert at squeezing the maximum of profit a mine has to offer. He travels alongside the gnomish scribe, Hadden Hoppert. Hoppert, unusually for a gnome, has almost no innate magical talent, but he makes up for it with an impressive collection of scrolls from all over Golarion. His shrewdness as a trader is matched only by his complete ineptitude as a cataloguer.


Scenario B-2: A Sandstorm of Malevolent Will prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Divs of the Desert
The term “div” can describe any one of a number of fiendish creatures drawn to the desert climate of Osirion and northern Garund. Many divs are believed to be corrupted genies. They are easily identified by their grotesque appearance and the feline enjoyment they derive from playing with their prey. For instance, the doru div takes the appearance of a floating, horned head and delights in spreading false rumors, while the aghash div wears tattered robes over its goat-like legs and possesses a fang-encircled red eyeball in lieu of a face, the embodiment of the evil eye. Servants of the div demigod Ahriman, who hand-shapes each div to become the perfect embodiment of its twisted nature, they are tormentors with an unquenchable hatred for the works of mortals, but all divs are driven by a compulsion and can be entrapped by the cunning, those versed in Garundi lore. Nevertheless, they are not to be underestimated, and should you encounter a div in the wilds of Osirion, you would be advised to pray to your favored deity for a swift death.


Now read the scenario card….


Sandstorm (read when the card first appears)
In a sandstorm, the ceaseless howling of the dry wind will leach the moisture from one’s very bones while the rough embrace of the flying sand bites into one’s flesh, flaying and abrading. Dehydration and exposure are very real threats. The force of the wind can pry open one’s mouth and fill one’s lungs with burning sand in a matter of seconds. However, the greatest danger a sandstorm brings is blindness, for the wall of dust (up to a mile high) blots out the sun and the corrosive effect of the sand makes opening one’s eyes nearly impossible.

Many who die during sandstorms are slain by the elements themselves, but many more perish by foolishly wandering into scorpion burrows, acid pits and other environmental hazards. The screaming of the wind masks the baying and howling of hungry predators until it is too late. It would be wiser not to move at all, except that to wait out a sandstorm without cover is tantamount to suicide. Seek a cave, burrow or overhang and pray that it is not already occupied.


Aghash (read when encountering)
Sometimes called the “terrible old crone” for their hunched-over, staggering gait and tattered robes, aghash divs wander the desert searching for the beautiful and innocent to lay low. They are insanely jealous of mortal beauty and prefer to exert their evil influence from a distance, cursing all those who meet the gaze of their evil eye.

Many aghash divs will conjure up a supernatural sandstorm to hide their workings and to disorient their prey. Combined with the weakness, disorientation and foul luck deriving from their evil gaze, these scouring sands can make short work of the unprepared.


Tukanem-Hanam (read after defeating)
Travelers in the region of deep sandy trenches known as the Underdunes have, on occasion, reported freak sandstorms, as though the land itself were rising up to protect some ancient secret. This characterization might not be far off, for the source of these storms is near to the rumored burial site of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension, ancient Osirian rulers with an uncanny mastery over the secrets of creation. Those who have survived such storms have reported the silhouettes of great pyramids rising from the sand beyond the dust wall and, deep within the storm, the crackling of lightning illuminating a skeletal, winged shape....

If the Underdunes truly are the final resting place for the Four Pharaohs of Ascension, then the figure often spotted in the heart of the storm can be none other than Tukanem-Hanam, favored cohort of the Cerulean Pharaoh. Legend tells that the juvenile dragon was slain and mummified to serve as guardian of Anok Fero’s vast riches. If this is true, then the dragon may be in possession of artifacts of great power and antiquity.


Scarab Buckler (read after acquiring)
Among the ceremonial items draped over the neck and shoulders of the mummified dragon was this enchanted silver buckler in the shape of a scarab. These small, black-shelled beetles are a sacred symbol in Osirian tradition. Because Ulunat, the great beetle whose husk forms the foundation of the Osirian capital in Sothis, resembles a scarab in overall form, the icon of a scarab composes the bottom part of the official Osirian seal, underneath a serpent-flanked disk symbolizing Ra, ancient Osirian god of the sun. Scarabs are also commonly associated with the afterlife, since the necrophagous insects can often be found within tombs and other burial sites, and as a psychopomp of Pharasma, they guide the souls of the dead in their migration along the River of Souls. As the diet of the smaller varieties consists almost entirely of dung, their virulent bites can be quite deadly, giving rise to the myth that swarms of scarabs serve somehow as tomb guardians, cursing would-be tomb-robbers. In reality, the beetles are just as likely to defile the tombs themselves in their hunger for decomposing flesh, and any “curses” are merely manifestations of infection and disease.

In an ironic twist, the previous owner of this buckler--possibly Anok Fero himself--had it enchanted to resist poison and serve as a bane against swarming insects. It’s also warded against multiple elements and contains a weak restoration spell to be used once per day as its wielder chooses.


Scenario B-3: Desiccated Delirium prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Dangers of Dehydration
No mortal can survive long without water. A human will die after three days. Dwarves can last a little longer; elves and halflings a little shorter. Even snakes and camels will eventually perish. The sands of time run short. Lack of water dries out the brain, disrupting judgment. Those in the extreme throes of dehydration can spend their final hour wandering without aim, chasing after that mirage on the horizon, or they can rupture their innards trying to squeeze liquid out of sand, rocks, scorpion stings, and acid baths. Water is the desert traveler’s most precious possession, and when the supply runs low, those who have it become arbiters of life and death. Hope that they look upon you kindly.


Now read the scenario card….


Mirage (read when first encountering)
Everybody experienced the vision differently. Some saw an oasis of date palms and lush grass. Others saw a caravanserai with offerings of tea and stronger stuff. Still others saw marids splashing and cavorting in a glimmering pond. A mountain of jeweled casks; a plump she-camel overflowing with milk; whatever the vision, it would inevitably resolve into just another grouping of desiccated scrubs or heap of ceaseless sand.


Mirage (read after defeating)
Except this time, the vision did not disappear. It was a tower, an impossibly human shape in the rolling monotony of the desert, but it was real. For a few paces surrounding the tower, greenery thrived, fed by a deep, stone-walled well. We fell upon it like hyenas and drank greedily until we were sated, paying no heed to the eyes staring haughtily from the tower’s highest window....


Acid Pool (read after defeating)
In Osirion, the elemental planes lie closer than usual to the plane of mortal existence. This can be witnessed in a variety of phenomena: the burning sun, the sudden and vicious sandstorms, the fire-belching volcanic vents, and the gems that glitter beneath unyielding stone. The great furrows of the Underdunes themselves mark the trails used by the desert's countless elementals. It is also apparent in Osirion’s hot springs, pools of naturally heated water that serve as a welcome balm to wanderers of the desert. Except in those moments when the hot springs are not water at all, when the steam rising from their surface carries the putrid stench of dissolving flesh....


Game of Afterlife (read after acquiring)
At some time in our ceaseless wanderings, Falsin Deek shared a genuine Osirian antiquity he called the Game of Afterlife. It’s a type of board game representing the passage of a soul into the afterlife, marked by great reversals of fortune: those for whom victory appears hopeless suddenly surge into the lead while the leaders plummet into despair. Deek claimed that it was a one-of-a-kind rarity, but he was kind enough to part with it for only a few sips from the buyer’s waterskin.


Scenario B-4: The Tainted Tower prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


A Taste of Poison
Within minutes after drinking from the tainted well, the poison began to set in. Hadden Hoppert was the first to feel it. Sweat poured from his brow; his pupils dilated to blankly staring black disks; he collapsed to the sand, clawing at his stomach as though to peel it open. Other members of the caravan followed. The world grew bright, distorted and sluggish, as though drowning in honey.

With our thirst slaked, certain details of the oasis that had gone unnoticed previously were now more apparent. The plants were exotic, in some cases carnivorous strains, not all of them native to the region. Those that could be easily identified, like ginger, poppy and belladonna, were well-known alchemical reagents. And the stone tower featured the clean lines characteristic of Thuvian architecture. This was the abode of an alchemist.


Purveyors of Life and Death
The independent nation-state of Thuvia in northern Garund, once a holding of Osirion, houses some of the most powerful alchemists on Golarion. It is the only known source of sun orchid elixir, a rare alchemical distillation capable of extending the imbiber’s natural lifespan indefinitely. Due to the elixir’s rarity and power, Thuvia has its political and economic prosperity for millennia despite the arid region having little else to offer the world save the scourge of divs that pour forth from the black House of Oblivion, a structure constructed by a foolishly vain pharaoh of ages long past that forges a link between Golarion and the divs’ home realm of Abaddon.

In the underground Citadel of the Alchemist, guarded by alchemical traps and constructs, the legendary alchemist Artokus Kirran distills his sun orchid elixir and, with his many disciples, seeks to uncover the other alchemical secrets of the universe. But what’s a Thuvian alchemist doing this far east?


Now read the scenario card….


Paracletus (read after defeating)
The paracletus, like the alchemist, seeks to understand the driving forces of the universe, but they have chosen mortalkind as their test subjects. Appearing in the form of a floating cloud of gems and living lightning, paracleti embody the dualistic relationship of logic and emotion: the swirling lights at the core of the creature correspond to capricious emotion, which the hard, faceted gems orbiting the central mass embody unyielding logic. A paracletus is able to “broadcast” a field of influence, boosting the logic or emotion of nearby mortals, and it is drawn to the extremely intelligent and the extremely impulsive, whose responses to the paracletus’ broadcasts can be observed and studied.

It seems likely that the Thuvian alchemist adopted this paracletus as a familiar. It appears to have developed some mastery over the elemental forces that the alchemist came to Osirion to study. However, the Thuvian was evidently unprepared for the strength of the paracletus’ emotional broadcast and has been driven homicidally insane, poisoning any who intrude upon his studies.


Alchemical Golem (read after defeating)
The alchemical golems, grotesque amalgams of biological and mechanical parts, clarify the Thuvian alchemist’s purposes in coming to Osirion. Apart from functioning as an unquestioning servant, each golem is driven by the interplay between one or more elemental forces. The elemental natures of plants, minerals and souls have long been a topic of fascination to alchemists, so it is no surprise that the Thuvian has come here, where the elemental planes are nearest, to conduct her research.


Thuvian Alchemist (read after defeating)
The Thuvian alchemist took a little persuading but eventually agreed to cleanse the caravaners of their “impurities.” “We have a saying in Thuvia,” she explained, “that only fire can extinguish fire. Like forces repel; the deadliest poisons cannot be cured, but a more powerful toxin of matching aspect can neutralize the effects of the original. Specifically, you call for an emetic solution. I believe I have some blue vitriol lying around somewhere....” The potion in question induced severe bouts of cramps and vomiting as enthusiastic as our initial thirst, and before long the entire caravan was once again feeling the effects of dehydration, but the Thuvian was kind enough to share her own triple-distillation, “pure elemental water.” She seemed so relieved to have an intelligent audience--more intelligent than the golems, that is--with whom to discourse that she presented each of her “guests” with a small “trinket,” items of great rarity and worthless junk chosen seemingly at random. Or maybe it was our data, not our discourse, she was truly after, for she bubbled over with questions about our physiological and psychological reactions to whatever alchemical compound had tainted the well-water, chattering and scribbling long into the night as our bodies recovered from their tortures.


Scenario B-5: Forged in Flames prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Wishmasters
In northern Garund, it is taught that one should always show kindness to strangers, for one can never know when one is in the company of a disguised genie. The genies of Osirion, Kelesh and Qadira are among the most powerful creatures known to frequent the material plane. Those who please a genie with gifts or acts of benevolence are rewarded with the granting of a single wish. One can also secure a genie's services by physically overpowering it or binding it to one's will, but those who seek power by that route should take great care, for the geniekind are shrewd, cunning creatures and will inevitably find a way to wreak vengeance on those who wronged them. Those who perish with a hatred for mortalkind are reshaped by Ahriman into divs to torment their former masters and brethren.

The four principal varieties of genie each exhibit a strong affinity to a particular elemental plane. Ifreet or efreet are native to the plane of fire and are the only among their brethren to have a natural animosity toward mortals. They can be bound or allied, but their tempers run hot, and an enraged efreeti is not to be trifled with. Marids are native to the plane of water and often appear to mortals in the form of dancers or storytellers. Shaitans belong to the plane of earth and are particularly fond of making bargains. Finally, the djinn belong to the plane of air and are masters of magic; the noble djinn are honor-bound to grant three wishes to any mortal who captures them. The jann, comprising a mixture of all four elements, are the lowest of the genie race and take the form of lonesome wanderers.


Now read the scenario card....


Conflagration (read when the card first appears)
The fire spread with unnatural hunger, devouring all it encountered. The dry, hot air of the desert certainly contributed to the ferocity of the blaze and made it all but impossible to extinguish, but climate alone cannot explain the way it danced from roof to roof independent of any wind.


Fire Spirit (read after defeating)
The enraged ifreeti called up many lesser elementals in the form of imps that leapt mockingly through the dancing flames. Although they appear to be merely a nuisance, such creatures pose a far greater danger if not dealt with immediately, for when left to their own devices, they will gleefully kindle a new blaze before dancing off to another hidden corner.


Ifreeti (read after defeating)
The efreeti is the embodiment of rage. The dwarven smiths who bound this one thought that it would provide them with an undying forge, but they were not powerful enough to contain the genie for long. Needless to say, they have learned their lesson. The smithy district now lies in ruin, but as the saying goes, "Wati endures," and with the economic boost of the impending lottery, it will be rebuilt before long.


Smiths of Wati (read after acquiring)
Although the fire has nearly destroyed their forge, the dwarven blacksmiths are profusely grateful and offer a lifetime discount on their wares. When asked how they came upon the efreeti in the first place, or the spell to bind it, they knit their bushy eyebrows and speak vaguely of a garundi man who passed through a few days previously, tattooed with white hieroglyphs, including an icon on his forehead of a serpent devouring its own tail. He did not offer his name, nor did the smiths ask it, but it appears the efreet-bound forge was his idea--and that he performed the ritual himself “as an act of kindness.” Was this truly a misguided attempt at charity, or did the mysterious arcanist intend the destruction all along? And if the latter, why? The smiths have no answers to these questions--only iron and steel.


Adventure B: Cross the Pharaoh’s Lands epilogue (read the following entries after finishing the Adventure)


The Tooth & Hookah
The caravan has arrived none too soon, for the lottery will be held in a mere two days, just long enough for some recuperation at the Tooth & Hookah, Wati’s most colorful inn and tavern.

The Tooth & Hookah’s floor plan appears exotic to the non-Osirian eye. Rather than traditional chairs or benches, the common area appears to have had a Keleshite brothel’s worth of pillows, cushions and silk dumped haphazardly around a number of low tables, each with its own hookah or water-pipe. The sweet yet acrid smoke billowing from these globular devices is shared by all the patrons as they swap rumors and advice in preparation for the opening of the Necropolis. Off-duty members of the Voices of the Spire, the Church of Pharasma’s law-enforcement branch, occasionally break in to remind overenthusiastic adventuring groups that the Necropolis is consecrated ground and, despite Khemet III’s decree, any actions seen as disrespectful toward the restful dead will result in that team’s immediate disqualification from the proceedings.

It’s fascinating to observe the diversity of the competition. As part of the lottery process, each adventuring party has selected a name and an icon for itself. The Sand Scorpions, led by the half-elf alchemist Black Kiss, is composed almost entirely of rogues of differing specializations. Their table is silent as the tomb, while the Dog Soldiers, a halfling band of Katapeshi dog-trainers, keep bursting into raucous laughter as they drink themselves into a coma. Regardless of their composition, each group looks with barely contained anticipation toward the opening ceremony, save for a group of Nethys-worshippers calling themselves the Scorched Hand. Their mood is sour after Sebti the Crocodile, high priestess of Wati’s Grand Mausoleum, has repeatedly declined their request to explore a specific site, a Nethysian temple said to be as old as old Wati, claiming that the sanctity of the proceedings in Pharasma’s eye dictates that exploration sites be allotted by chance and no special favors be given. The Scorched Hand are evidently displeased with this rebuff and have not made themselves popular with the other adventuring parties, started several altercations before storming off in a huff to find a tavern that’s “more selective concerning its clientele.”

Few groups have thought to seek the advice of the bartender and proprietor of the Tooth & Hookah, Farhaan Jebeya. An ex-adventurer with a scarred face and an easy smile, Farhaan is one of the few men to have entered the Necropolis and lived to tell about it. Something--whether the lingering psychic residue of the Plague of Madness or the sheer quantity of uninterred dead--has made the Necropolis the site of many necromancers over the centuries, and it was Farhaan who killed the last one eight years ago. This inn is his reward from the Church of Pharasma for restoring peace to Wati’s dead.

While trading gossip with Farhaan, visitors to the Tooth & Hookah are encouraged to feed a few scraps to Toothy, the inn’s mascot, a dwarf freshwater crocodile that lives in a deep well behind the bar.
  • [+] Dice rolls
Byron Campbell
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 1.

Adventure 1: The Half-Dead City prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Wati, the Half-Dead City
Wati. Jewel of the Sphinx River. City of Graves. The Half-City. Of these epithets, only the last quite does the place justice, for Wati is a city eternally split between the worlds of the living and the dead.

Built at the cradle of the Sphinx River, where the rivers Asp and Crook meet to form Osirion’s life-giving waterway, Wati began as a thriving trade hub devoted to Nethys and the Old Gods of Osirion: Set, Wadjet, Ra, Bastet, Horus, and the other strange, beast-headed deities worshipped by the ancient Osirians. Established in -1608 AR by Pharaoh Djederet II, Wati enjoyed many centuries of economic prosperity.

In 2499 AR, for reasons still not fully understood, Wati became the epicenter of a deadly plague conjured by the chaos-loving followers of Lamashtu, mother of monsters. From the perspective of staid, ancient Osirion, it only took the blink of an eye for the Plague of Madness to reduce this city of wealth and life to a ghost town. The few who survived fled, and Wati’s countless dead were left to rot in the street or in the homes and shops where they had barricaded themselves.

Then, in 2953 AR, Wati was reborn thanks to the efforts of a Pharasmin priest, Nefru Shepses. Shepses and his followers consecrated the entirety of the old city to Wati, finally granting rest to its dead and walling off the dead city, now known as the Necropolis. The Needle of Pharasma that rises from the heart of the Necropolis is a testament to their efforts.

New Wati grew up around the old one, centered on the opulent Grand Mausoleum of Pharasma. The construction of an entirely new city and the work required to properly inter all of the plague-dead fed into new Wati’s economy, and when that effort was done, the embalmers, sarcophagus-makers and canopic jar-potters put down roots, giving Wati a new identity as the heart of Osirion’s funerary trade.

Today, for the first time since Shepses, old Wati will be reopened under order of Pharaoh Khemet III, the Ruby Prince. Adventurers and scholars from throughout Golarion have congregated at Wati’s Sunburst Market, where the Church of Pharasma will conduct a lottery to distribute the right to explore the Necropolis, from the lowliest trader’s shop to the gaudiest tomb. The half-dead city thrums with life it hasn’t seen since its plague days.


The Necropolis Lottery
The local Pharasmins do not support the Ruby Prince’s decree, but they are powerless to resist the word of their god-king. The best they can do is conduct the reopening of the Necropolis in the way that is most respectful to its dead and to the Lady of Graves who watches over them.

Sebti the Crocodile, high priestess of the Grand Mausoleum, conducts the opening ceremony with poise unusual in one of her small years. She begins with a short speech in praise of Pharasma and the efforts of Nefru Shepses, then moves immediately into the business of the day. She stands before two urns. In the left urn can be found the names and icons of the adventuring parties who have registered for the lottery; in the right urn are the names of sites to be explored. The Pharasmins will conduct three drawings, ensuring that each group receives equal access to small and large sites. Once a group has its three assignments, they can tackle the sites in the order of their choice over the next several days. Despite special requests, Sebti emphasizes, the process must be left to luck so that the Lady herself can decide. This pronouncement earns a scowl from the purple-hatted leader of the Scorched Hand.

The exploration will be overseen by the Voices of the Spire, who will patrol the Necropolis and deal with parties straying beyond their allotted sites. In addition, the adventuring parties must follow three laws or face disqualification. “These three laws will govern the proceedings: First, Remember How This Came to Pass. The Necropolis is holy ground, and conflict between adventuring parties is absolutely prohibited. Second, Every Slave’s Hut is a Memorial. Vandalism of any structure, no matter how insignificant it seems, will not be tolerated. Third, Honor the Departed. Under no circumstances may the dead be disturbed. Undead, of course, may be put to rest. May the Mother of Souls guide you.”

There is much excitement as the teams receive their allotments, although there is no way to know yet which sites hide wealth and glory and which have already been cleared out by illegal tomb-robbers. Our assignments are relatively promising. One is an actual tomb from before the Plague of Madness in honor of a Wati general named Akhentepi. The second is the estate of a wealthy landowner named Pentheru. The third, earning a dagger-like glare from Velriana Hypaxes, Taldan leader of the Scorched Hand, is an old temple of Nethys called the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye.

This will be interesting.


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 1-1: Akhentepi's Legacy prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Tomb of Akhentepi
From the exterior, Akhentepi’s tomb is a large but unassuming stone structure in the midst of a pre-Plague of Madness cemetery. Ancient Oririani hieroglyphs above the doors praise Akhentepi’s prowess and strategic mind in battle and date his death to 2488 AR, a mere 11 years before the plague hit, making him one of the last citizens of Wati to receive a proper burial. The stone doors show signs of forced entry but evidently haven’t been disturbed in some time.

In the tradition of pre-Keleshite Osirian tombs, Akhentepi’s burial place is heavily trapped, and the would-be tomb-robber did not make it far. Her skeleton rests at the bottom of a simple pit trap. Amid images of Pharasma and the jackal-headed Osirian god Anubis, Guardian of the Tomb, the walls are decorated with murals honoring Akhentepi’s deeds in life. He is often depicted leading great armies in battle, though some pictures show a glimpse into the man’s family life and political achievements. In all the battle scenes, Akhentepi is shown driving a golden chariot and wearing padded linen armor appropriate to Osirion’s hot deserts.

As befits a man of his station, Akhentepi was interred with many of his servants, pets and possessions, and the mummified remains have attracted vermin and other necrophages. Nevertheless, the structure stands as a testament to ancient Osirion’s deep respect for the dead and fascination with the afterlife.


Now read the scenario card….


Sand Thief (read after defeating)
A type of earth elemental, sandmen are common nuisances in desert climes. Made of living sand, they can change form at will and are fond of playing mind games with their prey. This one took the form of a statue of Akhentepi and was almost indiscernible from a sandstone carving. Even when it animated, it continued the ruse, claiming to hold the trapped ba or personality of Akhentepi, one of the three parts of the soul according to ancient Osirian custom. After tiring of this game, the sandman transformed into a hideous betentacled beast and attacked. A particular danger when dealing with sandmen is not their attacks themselves but the soporific nature of the sand composing them, which can cause the victim to fall into a magically induced sleep. Once its foes have been dispatched, the sandman will rob them of their possessions and hide them among the sand that makes up its home.


Warrior Dolls (read when encountering)
In addition to the murals and carvings, Akhentepi’s battle prowess is depicted in dioramas spread throughout the many rooms of his tomb. These function not only as recommendations for his soul to Pharasma but also as tomb-guardians. When an intruder passes, the tiny wooden dolls depicting warriors serving under Akhentepi animate and attack, pursuing their prey relentlessly. Being tiny, they are not terribly dangerous on their own, but they synchronise their attacks perfectly and will break ranks when bested, scurrying off to arm some new deathtrap deeper in the tomb. Of course, being made of wood, the dolls are easily destroyed by fire.


Trapped Sarcophagus (read when examining or encountering)
The “false tomb” was a favored theft-deterrent in ancient Osirion, featured heavily in pyramids and other monuments to the fabulously wealthy. What appears to be the deceased lying in state among his rarest possessions is actually a mummified servant surrounded by cheap replicas. A hidden passage leads to the authentic burial chamber. Often, these false tombs are trapped to prevent greedy intruders from ever discovering their mistake.

This version is particularly ingenious, as the gold-lined sarcophagus itself acts as both trap and bait. When anybody attempts to disrupt its contents, it animates and attempts to swallow the intruder whole. Simultaneously, the false burial chamber begins to flood with filthy water while four stone pillars surrounding the sarcophagus arc with conjured electricity. Fortunately, in the millennia that have passed since its construction, the deathtrap has become slightly less deadly than it once was, but it still must be dealt with before the entrance to the actual tomb will open.


Akhentepi’s Armor (read after acquiring)
This appears to be the same armor worn by Akhentepi in the murals and tableaux depicting him. Although it is inferior to metal armors when it comes to stopping blows, the padded linen design is ideal for stanching the flow of blood and absorbing toxins before they enter the bloodstream. Being non-conductive, it’s naturally superior to metal armor when it comes to preventing electricity-based attacks. Most pertinently, the armor has been enchanted with a transmutation spell that gives its wearer limited knowledge of impending danger, which may explain its original wearer’s renown as a tactician and ability to survive so many large and bloody battles.


Scenario 1-2: Ahead of the Competition prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


House of Pentheru
Before the Plague of Madness hit, the House of Pentheru was an estate belonging to two generations of a Wati noble family. The estate was outfitted with all of the amenities possible at the time, including an ingenious indoor bath supplied by conjured water, which magically evaporates between uses. The walls are painted with beautiful murals depicting animal life and rites of passage of a noble Osirian girl. The Pentherus were apparently landowners who collected tithes from the farmers who worked their fields, and based on the space allotted, upwards of ten servants resided on the property with them. Unfortunately, all of that wealth has lapsed into decay in the years since the Plague of Madness.

All appeared normal until we reached the dining hall, where a ghastly display awaited us. At least a dozen headless corpses in varying states of decay sit posed around the table as though to enjoy a banquet, though little remains of the meal that must have been in progress when the plague struck. Strange crashing noises filter down from the upstairs bedrooms, attesting to some other presence within the house.


Now read the scenario card….


Beheaded (read when encountering)
Without warning, a new person burst into the room, screaming wild accusations at our new acquaintance, who seemed utterly baffled by the situation. The person’s bloodshot eyes were sunken and unfocused, as though from days without sleep, but they glittered with rage. The stranger produced a hidden kukri and charged for our acquaintance’s throat, and we could not help but cut them down. Then, a remarkable thing happened. The stranger’s head separated from its shoulders and rose into the air, wreathed in an elemental aura, cackling and chattering.


Blightwing (read when encountering)
It’s a well-documented fact that the cult of Lamashtu unleashed several vargouilles upon the city during the Plague of Madness, and these fast-breeding outsiders have never been completely eradicated. Resembling a disembodied, inhuman head sprouting bat-wings and tentacles, vargouilles are far from what most races would consider beautiful, making their virulent “kiss” particularly horrifying. A humanoid host “kissed” by the vargouille undergoes a rapid, grotesque physical transformation, its hair and ears sloughing off and being replaced with tentacles and wings. At the culmination of this metamorphosis, the newly formed vargouille pops off of the now-lifeless body of its former host.

It appears that the doru div Imanish, exhibiting the malevolence and love of irony typical of its kind, has been rounding up vargouilles like this one and encouraging them to “kiss” unwitting trespassers, turning this once noble house into a ghoulish menagerie of flying heads.


Imanish (read when encountering)
Doru divs appear as floating, bestial heads with curling horns and constantly whipping, animal-like hair. Tiny and unseen, they whisper ruinous rumors and false secrets in the night. When not flying, they can be seen rolling wildly along the ground, bouncing erratically. Like all divs, dorus live to wreak ruin on mortalkind, and their weapon of choice is misinformation. This doru, Imanish, used its powers of suggestion to lure young lovers and orphans into the Necropolis to be transformed into vargouilles or into floating heads using an enchanted headband it found one day. It has established a nest here in the House of Pentheru. Imanish’s death will bring great relief to the tormented people of Wati.


Tablet of Languages Lost (read after acquiring)
This stone tablet was displayed prominently in the anteroom of the House of Pentheru, where distinguished guests would wait to be announced to the master of the house. Its original purpose was to prove Pentheru the Elder’s fealty to the Keleshite emperor of the time, a requirement for noble families to retain their lands and titles at the time of the Keleshite Interregnum. Now, however, it serves a much more valuable purpose, for the vow of loyalty has been repeated in three languages: Kelish, Modern Osiriani, and Ancient Osiriani, which was on its way out at the time but still understood by some older families. By comparing the three texts, one can unlock some of the mysteries of Ancient Osiriani syntax and hieroglyphics. This should make it much easier to decipher the warnings on these old tombs, allowing a shrewd mind to locate hidden caches and disarm or at least detect traps before they’re sprung. It might also make it easier to interact with the locals.


Scenario 1-3: The Pharasmin Lottery prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Modern Wati
From floating Bargetown to wealthy Morning Sun, new Wati’s six districts hold a variety of cultural sites to intrigue the connoisseur. Smugglers, traders, fishermen, farmers, nobles, devotees, and artisans all live in noisy harmony just yards away from the silent, dusty dead.

The Midwife district, so named because it housed the priests and other workers who consecrated the old city and finally ushered its souls into their next life in Pharasma’s Boneyard, houses some of Wati’s most impressive sights. The Grand Mausoleum is Osirion’s second-largest temple and doubles as a city hall, since Pharasma runs the city for all practical purposes. Its high priestess, Sebti the Crocodile, ascended to her position from the rank of a common crocodile handler, and her brother Neb-At still cares for the sacred white crocodiles in the adjacent Golden Lake (while smuggling the occasional egg or hatchling). Only the relatively docile crocodiles know what else lurks under the fine layer of gold dust that covers the surface of this manmade pool. Just across the lake from Pharasma’s temple, the open-air Sunburst Market is a confusion of colors, smells and sounds as the locals and visitors haggle indiscriminately over rare spices and chipped, rusty armor. Midwife also houses Wati’s temple of Abadar, the Sanctum of Silver and Gold, and a small shrine to Wadjet, the old Osirian serpent-headed goddess and embodiment of the Sphinx River in its life-giving aspect.

In the winding Asp district, the Hall of Blessed Rebirth is the guildhall for the city’s embalmers, morticians and other funerary workers, led by the halfling Bahjut Everhand. Named for her own shriveled, mummified left hand, Everhand has transformed the guild into a prestigious academy of medicine and alchemy. Other notable industries in Wati include the Rising Phoenix dye market in Mender’s Row, famed Osirion over for its proprietary reddish-purple color, and the dwarven-run Getwahb’s Tarworks, Wati’s largest supplier of fuels and flammables.


Now read the scenario card....


Voices of the Spire (read when encountering)
Another prominent, but less cheerful, feature of the Midwife district is the Precinct of Left Eyes, the headquarters of the Church of Pharasma’s own police force. Law enforcement in Osirion is notoriously merciless, and in the old days, any serious crime in Wati was punishable by immediate death without trial. Less serious crimes carried a lighter punishment: gouging out the right eye, hence the sobriquet. The Voices of the Spire are more permissive than they once were, but only barely; you still do not want to get caught violating Pharasma’s law.


Sunburst Market (read after acquiring)
Sunburst Market in Wati’s Midwife district sells anything an adventurer might need and more. An orderly grid of painted columns provided some structure to the chaos of banners, stalls and merchants shouting their wares. Dishonest practices are strongly dissuaded by the Pillar of Second Thoughts, a central pillar decorated with the hands of thieves and pickpockets caught by the patrolling Marketwives.


Scenario 1-4: Tomb Raiders Gone Rogue prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Old Wati
Old Wati is a literal ghost town, but not all its ghosts rest easily. Along Acrid Street, clans of ghouls that have existed since the Plague of Madness wage a neverending turf war amidst the abandoned perfumeries and incense stalls. On Vizier’s Hill, where Wati’s nobles once lived, a band of dark folk have taken up residence, studying the secrets of the mummified dead. Shadowy meetings occur at the Dust Parlor, allips babble in the Archives of the Ibis, while in the crypts of the Dry Veins lurk vermin, mummies and coffer corpses. The psychic echoes of the violent plague still haunt the dead streets. Rising above it all is Pharasma’s Needle, a towering obelisk topped with a black stone that fell burning from the sky on the day of the old city’s consecration, said to be a gift and blessing from the Lady of Mysteries herself.


Fighting in the Necropolis
The terms of the lottery are clear: the Church of Pharasma will tolerate no unnecessary fighting in the Necropolis. Yet most of the adventuring parties favor a loose interpretation of these rules, if they think they can get away with it. After all, the treasures one site holds may be immeasurably more valuable than the dross remaining at another, and some groups believe it’s “only fair” for the wealth to be distributed evenly.

It isn’t clear who ambushed whom, as every group has a different story. The golden reliquary may have been discovered by the Dog Soldiers in an abandoned tannery, or it may have been found by the Sand Scorpions in an old incense shop. The Cryptfinders swear that they pulled it from the tomb of a high-ranking official. The Scorched Hand seemed happy for any excuse to take out their frustration on the other adventurers. What’s certain is that once the fighting began and it became clear that the Voices of the Spire weren’t going to intervene, every party wanted a piece of the prize, and they were all willing to fight to get it.


Now read the scenario card....


Scorched Hand (read after defeating)
The Scorched Hand is a diverse group of Nethys-worshippers led by Velriana Hypaxes, a wizard and scholar from Taldor in the northern continent of Avistan. Among the desert-equipped adventurers with their drab tan and white cloaks, Velriana is quite striking in her purple aristocratic garb and wide-brimmed hat. The split-faced icon of Nethys prominently hanging from her neck proclaims her devotion. She is the group’s de facto leader by force of personality. The other members of the Scorched Hand are native Osirians and fill out the traditional roles of a well-balanced adventuring party: Khelru, a cleric of Nethys, offers healing spells and magical support to the group; the half-elf Idorii is a lithe and agile fighter bound to the group by her mercenary nature; and Azaz Arafe, Khelru’s lover, is a somewhat redundant mage with kohl-darkened eyes and a passionate soul.

Amidst the confusion of the melee, one thing is clear: the Scorched Hand came prepared for a fight. In addition to their own numbers, they appear to have hired mercenaries from Wati’s criminal underground, from trappers and raiders to more monstrous allies charmed into temporary service. The moment she saw us, her accidental rivals, Velriana’s eyes flashed with hatred and she ordered the attack.


Cryptfinder (read after defeating)
The Cryptfinders follow Falto, a human rogue from the great city of Absalom on the Isle of Kortos, but their members hail from places as far-flung as Infernal Cheliax to the northwest, rich Qadira to the east, and arcane Nex to the south. Bravoes and narcissists, they’ve come to Wati in search of new stories to tell, true or not, and are easily swayed to lay down their arms in favor of tankards of ale.


Daughter of the Desert (read after defeating)
The Daughters of the Desert are unusual in that the entire adventuring party is female. Their group is fascinatingly eccentric, if not always combat-effective. They have a cleric of Iomedae from the atheist nation of Rahadoum on the west coast of Garund, veiled twins who claim to be witches, and a Thuvian barbarian. Their leader, a woman of the hardy, seafaring Ulfen people, is a genuine geniekin and a talented bard. A fellow scholar, she is collecting stories from her group and others in the lottery to fill up a book to be published back home. The Daughters appear to have made quite the haul from their assigned sites.


Dog Soldier (read after defeating)
The halfling Dog Soldiers prefer to hang back from the fighting and let their Katapeshi fighting dogs do the heavy lifting, although they will contribute with crossbows, slings and, in the case of their leader, “Mad Dog” Marrn, a greataxe nearly as big as he is. Their dogs have been trained to sniff out traps and valuables with their sensitive noses. The Dog Soldiers have come to Wati chiefly for financial gain and plan to immediately sell any artifacts they recover.


Sand Scorpion (read after defeating)
The Sand Scorpions are a group of rogues led by a half-elf alchemist named Black Kiss. As their name suggests, their primary method of defense is poisonous, and it’s in the hopes of discovering some forgotten Osirian formula or reagent that they have volunteered to explore the Necropolis. They are a reclusive group and refuse to share any more information regarding their discoveries.


Voices of the Spire (read after defeating)
The worst kind of police are those motivated by genuine faith, for there is no chance of them looking the other way or falling lax in their duties. Such is the case with the Voices of the Spire, the peacekeeping arm of the Grand Mausoleum of Pharasma. Constant vigilance must be exercised within the Necropolis to ensure one is always following the letter of the law...at least, while the Voices are within earshot.


Velriana Hypaxes (read after defeating)
Proud to a fault, the Taldan aristocrat was mortally wounded in the scuffle but refused the aid of her allies. Tucking a loose strand of hair into her floppy purple hat, she looked with disdain upon our group. “The temple is ours to explore by divine right,” she spat. “What have you done to earn it? Picked a ball from an urn? I spent years poring over Osirian lore. I discovered the site before the Pharasmins knew it was there. I deserve to be the first to uncover its secrets. And I will use them to bring glory and strength back to the Taldan Empire. Well, Nethys gives power to those who take it. If you decide to explore the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye, come prepared for a fight.” With those words, clutching her bleeding side, she fled into the maze of dusty alleyways making up the Necropolis.


Ghoul Market (read after acquiring)
Not all of the undead that roam the Necropolis are aggressive. The Gulla Market provides protection to those who would venture within, although a cynic might say that they’ve merely discovered a more efficient way to dispose of their leftovers, since these armors are scavenged from the same corpses they devour.


Scenario 1-5: Sanctum of the Erudite Eye prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Sanctum of the Erudite Eye
This temple to Nethys, god of magic, is as old as the old city itself. By some arcane secret, it is incredibly well preserved, and red curtains still hang from the walls, dusty but whole. The large central nave is dominated by a star-shaped fountain and pool decorated with the image of Nethys in his aspect as the All-Seeing Eye. The auxiliary rooms were designed to house or feed priests and acolytes or their books. A 15-foot statue of Nethys, half-white and half-black, looms over the great cathedral, arms thrown open to welcome his adherents. The echoing, high-roofed chambers are unsettling in the silence of the dead city. Ancient crypts quest like roots beneath the temple proper, and it’s here that treasure is most likely to be found.

Like all Osirian tombs, the crypts are protected with cunning traps kept in working order by the same magic that keeps the curtains hanging. However, something is not right. Traps already sprung, secret panels left open and empty, and scuffed footprints in the dust betray the presence of others who passed through here recently. Some chests and locked cabinets have been smashed open, their contents strewn about wildly as though someone were impatiently searching for a specific object. In one of these cabinets is a faded papyrus scroll containing a decree from Pharaoh Djederet II, who oversaw the construction of the original city of Wati. The decree mentions a “relic of unimaginable power and temptation” that “must never be discovered.” The rest of the scroll talks knowingly of some sort of scandal or blasphemy, but without historical context it’s as good as gibberish. Pools of wet blood can be spotted here and there among the empty pews, with a larger pool beside the blessed fountain.

A pack of skeletal jackals ambushed us in the temple’s courtyard. Oddly, they had the aura of freshly risen undead.


Now read the scenario card....


Graven Guardian of Nethys (read when encountering)
The Nethysians built this construct to watch over their most sacred catacombs. Although it has limited intelligence, it will provide safe passage to those who display the holy icon of Nethys or those wearing the robes of the temple’s priests. Otherwise, it attacks without mercy or regard for its own safety, deftly handling its ornately carved quarterstaff.


Senenmerek (read after defeating)
When we encountered the skeletal temple guardian known as Senenmerek, he was on his hands and knees before a small shrine to Nethys, praying for guidance. As it turned out, he had retained far more of his intellect and empathy than is usual among the undead. After verifying that we were not “with those golden-masked thieves,” he told us his story: how he was orphaned by gnoll slavers, ages before the Plague of Madness; how he was adopted by the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye and raised as a temple guardian; how, when his time came, he asked the high priest if he could continue to serve the temple beyond death. The process of mummifying favored servants to serve as tomb guardians was quite common in ancient Osirion, but it is not often the dead are given the chance to watch over the living. Tragically, the Plague of Madness left Senenmerek utterly alone, and he spent the following millennia in an eternal half-slumber. He was awakened, he said, when a dark-skinned man covered in white hieroglyphs and carrying a strange, squawking bird in a covered cage stole into the temple and made off with an artifact the skeletal guard had never seen before, subduing Senenmerek with some psychic hold over the undead. Then, a new set of trespassers arrived around the same time that we did. We agreed to help the skeleton rid the temple of these new intruders, and in exchange, he promised to help us circumvent its traps.


Forgotten Pharaoh Cultist (read when encountering)
The man was clearly mad. He wore a dark red, hooded robe, and his face was covered with a gold-painted wooden mask designed to resemble a Pharaonic funerary mask, complete with a headcrown and striped goatee. “You!” he shouted when he caught sight of our party, his booming voice echoing strangely inside the wooden mask. His outstretched finger trembled. “You are the ones who have stolen it! Deceivers! Blasphemers! The Master’s soul must be reunited! The Forgotten One will rise again!” After that, his babbling became unintelligible, heavily seasoned with Ancient Osiriani religious terms and the names of unknown figures.


Velriana Unborn (read when encountering)
Velriana Hypaxes, erstwhile leader of the Scorched Hand, must have died shortly after reaching the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye, for when we encountered her again, she was already a ravening ghoul. Judging from the barely intelligible epithets she hurled as her rational intellect faded, she seemed to believe that we were responsible for the despoilment of the temple. In death, as in life, she was fiercely loyal to Nethys and would not rest until the perceived perpetrators of this insult were brought to justice.


Spear of the Watchful Guardian (read after acquiring)
This is the traditional spear of a Nethysian temple guardian. It once belonged to Senenmerek, the skeletal defender of the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye in the Wati Necropolis. He gifted it to us as a token of gratitude for helping him clear out the temple of its masked looters, along with some of the less precious items the looters had stolen. It’s been enchanted with a transmutation spell that improves its wielder’s competence, allowing it to be used more effectively than normal spears.


Adventure 1: The Half-Dead City epilogue (read the following entries after finishing the Adventure)


A Deathly Touch and a Missing Mask
What secret was the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye constructed to hold? We found many treasures in the arms of the golden-masked looters, but none that would justify the tone of urgency and conspiracy of Pharaoh Djederet II’s decree. It is clear that there are forces at work in Wati beyond the excitement of the lottery. What was the secret that “must never be discovered”? Who is the man covered in white hieroglyphs who is sowing discord throughout the city? Who is the “Forgotten One” referred to by the masked cultists? And what necromantic force revived Velriana Hypaxes as a ghoul?

The answers to these questions may never be known, but one room in the temple’s crypts may have held a clue: In a hidden reliquary, its door left ajar, a stone figure stands with upraised arms as though lifting some heavy object into the sky. The figure is anatomically detailed but clearly different from the other representations of Nethys; it could be an Osirian god or pharaoh forgotten by time. Its face is scuffed and unfinished-looking, making its identity is impossible to pinpoint. The notches around its ears and jaws suggest that another piece, now missing, was intended to rest on the figure’s face, and the absence of dust on the statue’s head indicates that something was removed recently. Osiriani hieroglyphs on the wall give the usual warning of divine wrath for those who would tamper with the contents of the crypts, but they also mention the “ka of the Forgotten One” and identify the room as the “Reliquary of the Thrice-Divided Soul.”

It can’t be coincidence that both the cultists and the etchings in the reliquary refer to the “Forgotten One” and the concept of a divided soul. In ancient Osirian ontology, the soul can be divided into three parts: the ib, which represents one’s will and emotion and is embodied in the heart; the ba, which represents one’s uniqueness or personality; and the ka, which represents the vital, animating spark. Separated from the other parts of the soul, a powerful ka would hold untold necromantic properties. Could such an artifact have been hidden in this seemingly ordinary temple of Nethys? If so, who has it now, and what do they plan to do with it?

Hopefully, this is the last we will hear of such things. An auction is being held in two days to sell and trade the artifacts acquired in the Necropolis; somebody there might know more about this “thrice-divided soul.”
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Byron Campbell
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 2.


Adventure 2: Empty Graves prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Street Gangs of Wati
Wati presents a nice exterior with its Pharasmin temples and hillside estates, but like any major city, its wholesome upper crust pulses atop a writhing nest of smugglers, murderers and other criminals. Wati itself is like one of its well-preserved dead, pretty on the outside but churning internally with vermin.

In floating Bargetown, smugglers like the androgynous Dredge and the semi-respectable Mahga Threefingers take advantage of their river-top position to move illicit goods in and out of the city under the noses of the Voices of the Spire. But Wati’s most thriving criminal enterprise is grave-robbing, and all gangs of any standing have secret tunnels in and out of the Necropolis, bypassing the well-guarded wall separating the dead city from the living one.

The fortunes and turfs of these street gangs ebb and flow, but the two most prominent, currently, are the Silver Chain, which has its headquarters in the canal-ridden Veins district, and the Fading, which does a bustling drug-trafficking business out of an unassuming incense shop called Threshed Souls Fragrances. While the Silver Chain prefers to smuggle grave goods out of the Necropolis--and the occasional corpse, to be dismembered and rebranded as one of various “miracle curatives”--the Fading is single-mindedly focused on the distillation of mumia, a highly addictive drug derived from the flesh of mummies. For this reason, they are by far the more dangerous (and the more successful) of the two gangs. Informants report that the Silver Chain’s fortunes are on the ebb, and some say that their leader has been deposed by a masked foreigner.


Auction at the Canny Jackal
The rapid influx of new relics following the opening of the Necropolis has had a dilutive effect on the local economy, and many frustrated adventuring parties are finding their loot selling for less than a quarter of its worth. To keep adventurers from turning to foreign merchants or the black market, a Pharasmin priest named Ptemenib has invited all participants in the Necropolis lottery, as well as the rich and influential of Wati society, to an auction to be held at the Canny Jackal, a prestigious auction house and art gallery adjacent to Sunburst Market in the Midwife district. The auction is to be held this evening at dusk; it will be an excellent opportunity to acquire not only new relics and gear but also information and rumors concerning the mysteries of the past few days: the missing artifact from the Sanctum of the Erudite, the golden-masked cultists, and the “Forgotten One,” who seems to be the thread binding it all together.


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 2-1: Evening at the Canny Jackal prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


A Most Unusual Auction
The auction, like the city, was an exercise in contrasts. It was quite surreal to see scarred, heavy-drinking adventurers, some of them still caked with Necropolis grave-dirt, schmoozing it up with Wati’s rich and famous over stuffed figs and honey-drizzled onion bread. The Pharasmin priest Ptemenib was there, lost in thought and mumbling distractedly to himself, as well as the coffee baron Basif Iosep, the provisioner Tehrk Fourwinds, Anok Tejuht of Abadar’s Sanctum of Silver and Gold, and even Wati’s haty-a, the personal representative of the Pharaoh, Oshep Kahmed. Representatives of Wati’s foremost noble families, the Mahfres and the Okhentis, were both present, keeping carefully to opposite sides of the auction hall, as well as new money like Meehr Zet, whose father owns the prosperous Getwahb’s Tarworks. Apart from speculation as to the artifacts up for offer and grousing over the effects of inflation, a major topic of discussion centered on the adventurers who had never returned from their assigned sites, including the Scorched Hand’s leader, Velriana Hypaxes, and a local group called the Sunrise Fellows who were assigned an old spice shop, Windward Wend Oils Company. Did they encounter some insurmountable evil in the Necropolis, or were they defeated by their own greed? The gossip is as juicy as the onion-stuffed squid.

The auction itself was as such things usually are, long stretches of unsaleable knickknacks punctuated by feverish bouts of bidding over the few items of real value. One such item was an ornate sarcophagus discovered apparently empty in the spartan tomb of a noble family called Amadjawet. The mystery surrounding the lavish but apparently unused sarcophagus had piqued the fancy of the Wati elite, and they were in the midst of a fierce bidding war when there came an impatient pounding on the Canny Jackal’s enormous double doors, which seemed to echo strangely off of the sarcophagus on the auction block. Minnothet, the Canny Jackal’s owner, gave an order for the doors to be opened, but before her servants could act, the ancient hardwood splintered and a horde of undead poured into the auction hall, inciting a panic among the distinguished guests...and more sensible reactions among the adventuring parties present.


Now read the scenario card….


Natron Zombie (read after defeating)
The undead were varied in appearance, from clearly decrepit mummies to the recently deceased. Most were dried in natron salts, the first step of a traditional Osirian mummification ritual, making their dead skins unnaturally tough and leathery. They poured in from every door and window, a rising tide of undead.


Crawling Hands (read when encountering)
Sunburst Market’s Pillar of Second Thoughts is a central fixture, a reminder to potential thieves and pickpockets of the consequences of being caught by the Marketwives Rekitre and Khipa Yannanza. Moments after the undead attack began, a strange squirming noise started coming from the direction of the market’s central square, and a minute later the first of the severed hands made its way into the auction house. They apparently retained some memory of their former crimes, for some skittered straight to the throats of the merchants who had punished them, while others took advantage of the chaos to make off with any unsecured valuables in their vicinity.


Amadjawet (read after defeating)
Amadjawet’s sarcophagus had only seemed empty, protected by an illusory blessing that was undone by whatever dark force reanimated the city’s dead. While the auctioneers were distracted by the chaos at the front doors, the heavy sarcophagus swung free and a centuries-old mummy staggered out. The desiccated former Amadjawet, bewildered by her sudden return to life, attacked all nearby, thinking herself besieged by tomb robbers.


Auction House (read after acquiring)
The Canny Jackal’s proprietor, Minnothet, was overjoyed to have her auction house restored to safety, and she offered us a permanent invitation to all future events. However, the moans and screams drifting through the hot night air served as a reminder that Wati was not out of danger yet....


Scenario 2-2: Panic in the Streets prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


A Plague of Undead
It was clear immediately that the undead attack was not contained to the Midwife district. Howls and screams echoed from across the city, and the hollow thudding of thousands of undead fists reverberated from the direction of the Necropolis gates. Whatever had occurred, it had simultaneously reanimated every corpse in the city--and Wati has many corpses, most of them remarkably preserved.

Those willing to help congregated at the Grand Mausoleum, where they could coordinate their efforts with the Church of Pharasma and the Voices of the Spire. A special task force of civilians, Pharasmin priests and town guard, led by the young acolyte Bal Themm, currently holds the Necropolis gates against the innumerable horde of ghouls, zombies and mummies that have gathered there, but as long as the structure stands, there is no way in and out of the Necropolis to investigate the source of the disturbance. Ptemenib has a theory that involves the missing relic from the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye; he became quite excited when he heard about the “ka of the Forgotten One.” Though he has no more clues than we do as to the identity of this “Forgotten One” or the true nature of the missing artifact, he speculates that an article imbued with a sufficiently powerful ka, united with a living sorcerer or necromancer, could unleash a “ka pulse” that could conceivably imbue every body in a two-mile radius with that “vital spark,” reanimating them as zombies. Bodies that already contain a ka would be unaffected. This would also explain the extreme aggression of the undead. Whoever unleashed this ka pulse is probably still hiding somewhere within the Necropolis.

With no way to search the Necropolis for the time being, the church’s orders are to minimize the panic in the living portion of the city. Wild stories and pleas for aid have filtered in from all over Wati. The Hall of Blessed Rebirth, which houses the local embalming guild, is one hot spot of undead within the living city, but reports have also come in of an undead judge holding grisly mock trials in the Precinct of Left Eyes. Sebti the Crocodile’s wishes are clear: do whatever possible to minimize the panic.


An Outside Chance
Unfortunately, in this extreme situation, the lines of authority in the Pharasmin church are called into question. Nakht Shepses, a descendent of the Pharasmin priest who consecrated Wati thousands of years ago, believes that it is his responsibility as commander of the Voices of the Spire to restore order by any means necessary. In this case, his solution is to call up an army of psychopomps to swiftly defeat the undead.

Psychopomps are intended as guides for departed souls as they make their way along the River of Souls to Pharasma’s Boneyard, but the ones Nakht Shepses has in mind, flying vanths and crocodile-headed esoboks, are even more terrifying than the undead they are meant to contain, and there are already reports of them attacking civilians who have wandered too close to the fighting. Sebti the Crocodile believes the Voices’ actions are only exacerbating the panic, while Shepses maintains that swift, decisive action is the only solution and that it is shameful for the church to be recruiting tomb-raiding adventurers to aid in the protection of the city. If any adventuring party can best his vanth lieutenant, Ajin Ra Baqa, in a show of strength, he will reconsider unleashing the full force of the psychopomps upon the city.


Now read the scenario card….


Old Eye-Taker (read when encountering)
In life, Magistrate Sotenre was the most feared judge in Wati, infamous for meting out corporal punishment. It was largely due to the efforts of “Old Eye-Taker” that the Precinct of Left Eyes got its current name. So great was his hold over the legal system that he was interred in a private crypt beneath the courthouse. Now, the undead judge and his skeletal bailiffs are rounding up local civilians and putting them up on mock trials. His bench is already decorated with a dozen fresh eyeballs, and enucleated corpses lie slumped in the viewing gallery. This “streak of justice” must be stopped, but the only chance to attack Old Eye-Taker comes when he allows his victims to approach the bench after successfully defending themselves against his absurd allegations.


Ajin Ra Baqa (read after defeating)
Vanths are the soldier class of Pharasma’s Boneyard. They fly on enormous raven wings and wear black, polished vulture masks atop their skeletal bodies, but the vanth’s most recognizable feature is its scythe, both a weapon to defend the souls under its care and a tool to harvest those who do not go willingly. This vanth has been a personal guardian of the Shepses line since the consecration of Wati under the priest Nefru Shepses.


Widow and Dearly Departed (read when encountering)
Sehhosep Naahn is an instructor in embalming at the Hall of Blessed Rebirth, and as such, she was able to personally oversee the funerary preparations for her husband Bentu, who passed away last week. She and Bentu had been closer than lovers, but caressing his body with oils and washing it in the Sphinx had brought her some measure of comfort and closure, all of which was undone when his body rose as a mindless zombie. Now, she is convinced that Pharasma has reunited them. Unfortunately, the terrified townsfolk don’t see things the same way, but the half-elf sorceress is willing to fight them all to protect her zombie lover.


Esobok (read after defeating)
The esobok is a terrifying creature, as large and leathery as a hippopotamus, wearing a lion-like mane of black feathers and sporting a half-eldritch crocodilian skull in lieu of a face. They are the most feral of Pharasma’s psychopomps, driven not by martial discipline or respect for the souls of the dead but rather by an insatiable hunger. The unholy spark animating undead corpses is their preferred meal, and their jaws are able to tear a soul forcibly from its vessel, but in the tantalizing presence of undeath, they are often driven into a frenzy, snapping at the souls of living and undead alike. They are the junkyard dogs of the Boneyard, a brute force that can only be mastered by the flying vanths, but they have some fear of their mistress Pharasma and can be cowed into submission by presenting the holy spiral of the Lady of Graves.


Hand of the Honest Man (read after acquiring)
In grudging recognition of our restoration of order, Nakht Shepses presented us with another family heirloom, the Hand of the Honest Man. This mummified member belonged to an innocent man wrongfully accused of thievery by the Marketwives. Worn on a simple string around the neck, the hand serves as a testament to the honesty of its wearer; it detests liars and visibly writhes in the presence of falsehoods. But the hand’s status as a martyr also serves to protect its wearer against curses, willingly absorbing any curse cast upon its owner for as long as the hand is worn.


Scenario 2-3: Chains of Silver prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Infiltrating the Silver Chain Gang
Now that new Wati has been restored to order, it’s time to find a way into the Necropolis to hunt down the source of the ka pulse. The Pharasmin priest Ptemenib has some ideas on that.

In this time of crisis, he revealed a church secret: when Nefru Shepses consecrated the Necropolis, he also installed twelve mystical devices known as Elegiac Compasses. These complex, delicate machines detect necromantic energies, and over the centuries, they’ve allowed the Voices of the Spire to track down and stop any dark forces tampering with the old city’s dead before they became a large-scale problem. The parts used are exceedingly rare, and over the years many of the Compasses have needed to be stripped down to repair the most important ones, so finding enough functional devices to triangulate the necromancer’s whereabouts might be a problem, but it’s far better than searching every house, shop and tomb in the dead city.

Getting into the Necropolis is another issue. Ptemenib suggests employing the smuggling tunnels used by the city’s criminal underworld. The location of these tunnels is a secret closely guarded by the criminal bosses, and old tunnels are frequently trapped or collapsed to prevent the competition or the Pharasmins from making use of them. Luckily, Ptemenib is part of a special task force within the church designed to root out and punish grave robbers. For months, he has been spying on the Silver Chain, one of Wati’s two prominent gangs, with the aid of his nosoi psychopomp Qasin. The little masked bird arrived at the auction last night, fluttering and squawking excitedly, to inform Ptemenib that she had discovered the location of the gang’s hideout, the abandoned Bright River Brickworks amid the mazelike canals of the Veins district. That’s why the priest was so distracted before the auction started; when he appeared to be talking to himself, he was really conversing with his invisible informant.

The Silver Chain have been mostly tolerated by the Grand Mausoleum until now because, unlike their rivals the Fading, they have kept their hands clean of the ghoulish drug mumia, which is distilled from mummified flesh and thus an abomination in the eyes of Pharasma. The church’s interest was piqued when the Silver Chain reportedly set up a mumia laboratory of their own several weeks ago. In the time since, another intriguing development has occurred: their previous leader was mauled to death by his own trained hyenas and replaced by a mysterious foreigner.

Last night, while watching the brickworks entrance, Qasin observed a man in a golden funerary mask enter, issuing orders to the smugglers. Ptemenib believes this may well be the necromancer we are looking for; after all, the artifact missing from the Reliquary of the Thrice-Divided Soul matches the description of a pharaonic mask. Even if it is not, the Silver Chain’s leader will surely know a secret way into the Necropolis.


Now read the scenario card….


Silver Chain Smuggler (read after defeating)
It was clear that a major operation was going down. Silver Chain smugglers swarmed the brickworks, some collecting gear for a big expedition into the Necropolis, others poring over ledgers containing details of sales and clandestine meetings, and still others fighting to contain smuggled bodies--and some body parts--brought to aggressive life by the ka pulse. Apparently believing us to be the forward arm of a full Voices sting, they scrambled to hide or destroy contraband even as their brethren distracted us with poison-tipped daggers. Silver Chain ambushers choked every hall and doorway, making forward progress nearly impossible and giving their leaders ample time time to escape or to activate booby traps.

Many, however, were less willing to risk their lives for the good of the gang. When the tide of combat turned in our favor, many Silver Chain smugglers threw down their daggers and turned themselves in or simply fled. They would murmur vague complaints, such as: “Those golden-masked lunatics think they run the show now.” Or: “I don’t care how valuable the mask is; I’m not trading my life for some nameless pharaoh’s hat.” However, they would not elaborate beyond these broad themes, maintaining some vestige of honor among thieves, or at least an inbred surliness toward figures of authority.


Ekram Iffek (read after defeating)
We discovered Ekram Iffek, the new leader of the Silver Chain gang, in the gang’s mumia laboratory among the volatile remains of various failed attempts to concoct the drug. However, he showed no signs of ghoul fever or even of having used the substance, and it’s more likely he chose that room to receive some privacy from the increasingly alienated older members of the gang. He preferred diplomacy to bloodshed, willing to trade in any number of the gang’s smuggled artifacts in exchange for his freedom, but when cornered, he fought theatrically, betraying his past life as a renowned gladiator.

Apart from his distinctive pink khopesh, Iffek carried on him a bright blue quill and several parchments detailing his activities in Wati; the quill seems to be some sort of long-distance communication device, transferring a copy of its writing to a remote recipient. It seems that, for the past month, Ekram Iffek has been utilizing the Silver Chain’s resources to search for a particular artifact hidden in the Necropolis. They had hoped to discover it prior to the lottery, but with precise knowledge of its location, they had been unsuccessful. Judging from Ekram Iffek’s garb and other context clues, these must have been the golden-masked cultists we encountered in the Sanctum of the Erudite Eye. The most recent missive details his suspicion that the item was stolen by an unknown third party and is now being used in a necromantic ritual: the ka pulse. In this most recent note, Iffek notes that he has his people combing the Necropolis for the stolen article and concludes by asking for further guidance. This is followed by a brief note written in another hand: “Remain there. I will handle this personally. The Pharaoh is not pleased.” It is signed “Meret-Hetef.”


Meret-Hetef (read when encountering)
Meret-Hetef is clearly well versed in the art of survival. When confronted, she activated every trap at her disposal to effect her escape. When truly cornered, however, she waxed loquacious, brimming with boasts and threats. “You are fools,” she announced plainly. “Can’t you see that he has already returned? All that is left is to reunite his ka and his ba. Then, her transformation complete, the Sky Pharaoh will rain destruction upon all you unbelievers!” With those words, she fought to her death.


Natron Fang (read after acquiring)
It appears that Ekram Iffek, the new leader of the Silver Chain gang, anticipated tangling with undead, undead this colorful khopesh is a souvenir from his gladiatorial days. Carved from a single chunk of natron, the pink mineral salt used in Osirian mummification rituals, the Natron Fang is bane against all manner of undead and can easily slice through a mummy’s leathery wrappings.


Scenario 2-4: Those Who Dwell In Darkness prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Living in the Necropolis
While Wati”s Necropolis is mostly home to ghouls, vermin and the occasional div, the Grand Mausoleum knows of at least three additional groups who call the dead city home. Should the plan with the Elegiac Compasses fail, any of the Necropolis’ living residents might have information concerning the source of the ka pulse…if the asker can afford the price.

A tribe of dark folk calling themselves the Xotl have taken up residence atop Vizier’s Hill, the aristocratic district of old Wati. Though they mostly keep to themselves, the Xotl remain on good terms with the Church of Pharasma and can be relied upon to keep the vermin population in check. It’s believed that they originally emerged from the Darklands via a bottomless well in old Wati known as the Umbracene Well. The Xotl leader, Unwrapped Harmony, is on speaking terms with the priest Ptemenib as they share a common fascination: he with the soul’s journey after death, and she with the “immortal,” mummified corpses those souls leave behind.

A less friendly group are the lamia Amushet sisters dwelling in the structure known as the Cenotaph of the Cynic. Originally a tomb for those who had fallen to the Plague of Madness, it was repurposed by Nefru Shepses to house the bodies of those who did not ascribe to any god. The atheistic lamias moved in some centuries later and have taken great pleasure in painting the walls with blasphemies and defiling the shrines to Pharasma and Anubis that survived from the original structure. While they harbor a predictable enmity for the Grand Mausoleum, they are surprisingly gracious hosts for lamias, particularly the youngest sister Hepsushep, and will happily swap rumors with any who venture into their “Nihilibrium” willing to denounce their gods.

Finally, the church knows of a juvenile crystal dragon who recently established a nest in the basement of a glassblower’s shop called the Shiny Bauble. The dragon, Shardizhad, is still young and pompous, but she shares her kind’s fascination with shiny objects and pretty jewels and may be willing to swap information or supplies for a few choice knickknacks


Now read the scenario card….


Bheg (read when encountering)
The Sunrise Fellows weren’t killed by monsters, as the rumors believed. In fact, they were secretly agents of the Fading, Wati’s foremost producer of the mummy-derived drug mumia. Their plan was never to explore the Necropolis, but instead to set up a new mumia lab closer to the source. Unfortunately for the Sunrise Fellows, their alchemist, Bheg, was a little too fond of sampling his own product, and he experienced its worst side effect firsthand: transformation into a flesh-eating ghoul. His “Fellows” were his first victims.


Gaunt Cadaver (read when encountering)
The dark folk do not leave corpses behind when they die, exploding in a flash of brilliant light. For this reason, the Xotl of Vizier’s Hill are obsessed with the well-preserved mummies in the Necropolis below and are convinced that the Osirian rituals of mummification somehow hold the key to everlasting life for the dark folk. While Unwrapped Harmony views the mummies with almost religious reverence, though, her apprentice Gaunt Cadaver has grown impatient with merely observing the restful dead and has taken a more direct approach to achieving eternal “life” using a grisly, modified juju ritual to turn his followers into zombies, a process he refers to, ironically, as “enlightenment.” The Xotl leader, Unwrapped Harmony, has promised to help repair the Elegiac Compasses if Gaunt Cadaver’s cult of “enlightenment” is put to an end.


Dark Slayer (read after defeating)
Sometimes called the caligni, the dark folk are among the most enigmatic of Golarion’s civilized races. They are believed to be descended from the Aztlanti, the great human civilization that was destroyed in the cataclysmic event known as Earthfall. The survivors that fled into the subterranean Darklands eventually evolved into the diminutive, shadowy dark folk. Although considered a single race, the dark folk are a highly polymorphic, caste-based society dominated by the taller dark stalkers, who use the smaller and more numerous dark creepers as willing slaves. Even the six-foot dark stalkers boast negligible mass, and it is rumored that they have no corporeal substance beneath their dark wrappings. Their diet consists primarily of light, which they can only handle in small amounts before succumbing to “light sickness”; fungi; and rotting flesh. The dark slayers are roughly four feet tall and serve as lieutenants to the dark stalkers, directly overseeing the three-foot dark creepers.

In an effort to achieve “immortality,” a Xotl cult led by the dark slayer Gaunt Cadaver has broken off from the main group and is being systematically converted to juju zombies. Unwrapped Harmony believes that the dark slayers and creepers currently following Gaunt Cadaver can have their loyalties swayed, and for every convert we return to Vizier’s Hill, she has pledged her assistance in repairing the Elegiac Compasses.


Elegiac Compass (read when encountering)
Most of the Elegiac Compasses have been smashed by cave-ins, disassembled by looters, or worn down by the elements to the point of irreparability. This one is in rather good shape and should be useable after some repairs. Each Compass can only detect the necromantic residue of the ka pulse along a single vector; it will require three of them to triangulate the necromancer’s position with any accuracy.


Shardizhad (read after acquiring)
Native to the Elemental Plane of Earth, crystal dragons are a variety of primal dragon covered in scintillating, gemlike scales. They are meticulously orderly and very vain; the easiest way to offend a crystal dragon is to disrupt or question the careful arrangement of its hoard. If angered, young crystal dragons like this one can exhale a dazzling color spray or coat the environment in a disorienting glitterdust, but if befriended, crystal dragons make useful allies, willing to trade items of great value for shiny, pretty trinkets.


Ushabti of the Willing Servant (read after acquiring)
In many Osirian tombs, the most trusted servants of noble or important figures were interred with their masters to serve them in the afterlife. This small fetish contains the soul of a humble man who pledged eternal service to the noble family he served. Once per day, the holder of the fetish can call upon its inhabitant to perform simple tasks or feats of strength. Found in a family tomb on one of the Vizier's Hill estates, this was one of the tools used by the dark slayer Gaunt Cadaver in his twisted juju rituals.


Scenario 2-5: The Gilded Mask prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Sepulcher of the Servant
One of the dark creepers rescued from Gaunt Cadaver’s juju cult spotted a man in a golden mask arguing with something in a gilded cage outside of an observatory just a few hours before the ka pulse went out. This, along with the data from the Elegiac Compasses, allowed us to pinpoint the necromancer’s position as the Observatory of Truth and Wisdom in the southern half of the Necropolis. This simple structure, dedicated to observing and cataloging the movements of celestial bodies, was built in honor of the Osirian gods Thoth and Maat, deities associated with the moon and stars, respectively, though Thoth is also the patron god of scribes, recorder of days, and father of mathematics, while his wife Maat oversees the cosmic order and the procession of seasons. The observatory’s name derives from their respective epithets, “Lord of Divine Wisdom” and “Feather of Truth.”

Unfortunately, a thorough search of the structure’s single story and observation tower turned up no sign of the necromancer’s presence. However, a prominent spiral worked into the floor merited further investigation, as one would not normally expect to see Pharasma’s divine symbol in a structure devoted to the older Osirian gods. As it turned out, a hidden lever transformed the spiral into a set of stairs descending into a secret tomb. Osiriani hieroglyphs proclaimed this structure, larger by far than the observatory above it, to be the “Sepulcher of the Servant,” constructed by none other than Nefru Shepses to protect his corpse and that of his line, particularly those who had served Pharasma as priests or through their works.

The elaborate tomb was built to mirror the journey of the soul to Pharasma’s Boneyard. A pathway of stars painted on the walls and ceiling guides the way from chambers designed to house lesser servants of Pharasma to the burial chamber of Nefru Shepses himself. Along the way are rooms intended to preserve the history of Wati, including a scale map of the city and all its structures (now hopelessly out of date), a collection of mummified animal specimens, and detailed registers of births and deaths intended to mirror Pharasma’s Catalogue of Last Days. Chanting echoes from the direction of the tomb’s most sacred chamber, the Sanctuary of the Goddess’ Hand, where Nefru Shepses himself has been interred.


Now read the scenario card….


Forgotten Pharaoh Cultist (read when encountering)
As we closed on the necromancer, we were ambushed by more of the golden-masked cultists. Unaware of the deaths of their leaders, they had been dispatched into the Necropolis hours before our raid on the Silver Chain headquarters. One of them was apparently bright enough (unusual in a low-ranking cult member) to follow us from a distance as we repaired the Elegiac Compasses and tracked the necromancer to the Sepulcher of the Servant. “Thank you for leading us to the mask,” she said in her oddly hollow voice. “You have unwittingly done the Master a service. But we can’t allow his ka to be tarnished by the touch of unbelievers. It’s bad enough that necromancer is twisting the Master’s divine spark in service of his obscene ritual. But what you have witnessed here is nothing compared to the power he will wield when his soul has been reunited.”


Nebta-Khufre (read when encountering)
Painted in white hieroglyphs and wreathed in a dark aura, the necromancer was busily defiling Nefru Shepses’ tomb, smearing it with gore, feces and blasphemous symbols in the hopes of undoing the powerful consecration laid over the sarcophagus and raising Nefru Shepses, Wati’s once-savior, to lead his undead army. A serene golden mask, complete with a blue-striped headcrown and twin sculpted cobra heads, hid his face. Though single-mindedly devoted to his purpose, he had the foresight to surround the room with alarm spells, giving himself ample time to flee or prepare offensive magicks as we approached. When forced to fight, he surrounded himself with a horde of loyal undead servants and floated above the fray, raining down balls of red lightning while a disembodied head in a gilded cage screamed and ranted apocalyptic prophecies.


Neferekhu (read after acquiring)
The desiccated head in the gilded cage is a pitiful sight. Mind broken by oracular visions of destruction, floating triangles and the return of a “golden-faced god,” the head’s ravings are an indecipherable mix of past, present and future. With some care, though, the shape of her story--and that of her grandson, the necromancer Nebta-Khufre--becomes clear. Neferekhu was the matriarch of a noble family in Tephu famed for their gift of clairaudience, the ability to hear the voices of the dead. Nebta-Khufre, born without this ability, was shamed and cast out by his family. Driven by ambition and pride, he turned to the study of necromancy, but he was never able to gain his grandmother’s approval. After her death, the drug-addled necromancer determined that he would claim her gift for himself, so he stole into her tomb, chopped off her head, and reanimated it, trapped in a gilded cage like an obscene bird.

Guided by Neferekhu’s prophecy, Nebta-Khufre found his way to the Necropolis and to the hidden reliquary below the temple of Nethys. Believing himself to be the “god-king” of which she spoke, he concocted a plan to raise an army of undead and march upon Wati and eventually Sothis, dethroning the Ruby Prince and turning Osirion into a kingdom of the dead.

Happy to see her failure of a grandson laid to rest, Neferekhu has calmed somewhat, although she is still apt to bite anyone foolish enough to stick their fingers near her cage. If would be the merciful thing to end her undeath, but for those without moral qualms, her inspired wisdom could be quite useful in tracking down the true identity of the Forgotten Pharaoh. If nothing else, her cage could serve as a makeshift flail in a pinch.


Mask of the Forgotten Pharaoh (read after acquiring)
The headcrown, twin cobras and golden color identify this funerary mask as belonging to a pharaoh, but the dead leader’s identity can’t be ascertained from the expressionless face. The two-headed, winged cobra, known as a uraeus, is a symbol of Wadjet and proof of the life-giving river goddess’ blessing of rule, and the uraeus design can be seen in all royal articles of Osirion, including the nation’s official seal and the headcrown worn by the living pharaoh, Khemet III.

The funerary mask is intended to protect its wearer and identify his soul to Pharasma, and the enchantments laid on this mask are still active. Symbolizing the wisdom of rule, the mask imbues its wearer with divine knowledge, particularly as it pertains to the once-great Osirian empire and the afterlife. Furthermore, it protects its wearer from curses and poisons, as it would have protected the pharaoh’s immortal body from decay. Finally, the necromantic energies of the mask can be used to communicate with the dead or animate them, if so desired, or cow a corpse that has already risen.

Nakht Shepses, commander of the Voices of the Spire, would like to see the mask in the Grand Mausoleum’s custody, but Ptemenib argued that, should the cultists continue their attempts to claim it, it would be safer outside of the city. They would both like to see it destroyed, but doing so would be an affront to Pharasma and an insult to the pharaohs’ divine rule. Besides, under the conditions of the lottery, the mask rightfully belongs to those who retrieved it from the Necropolis. However, high priestess Sebti the Crocodile strongly cautions against attempting another ka pulse: not only is it an abomination, but the backlash of the pulse would very likely demolish the wearer’s own ka, preventing her soul from reaching Pharasma. A sad fate for Nebta-Khufre, if this is true.


Adventure 2: Empty Graves epilogue (read the following entries after finishing the Adventure)


Who Is the Forgotten Pharaoh?
Nebta-Khufre has been slain, and his undead army is slowly being put to rest by the Voices of the Spire, but it seems that he was merely a distraction in the mystery surrounding the Forgotten Pharaoh. It’s unlikely that the cultists will stop searching for the mask, which they believe contains a part of their master’s soul. If Neferekhu’s ravings are to be believed, allowing them to succeed in their scheme would be disastrous, but one cannot combat knowledge from a place of ignorance. The cultist Meret-Hetef referred to the “Sky Pharaoh,” but this is ultimately no more revealing than if the term “Chosen One” had been used. More likely than not, the cultist was simply playing on the popular tall tale to make her mysterious ruler seem more intimidating and impressive. Even more perplexing was her use of the pronoun “her.” While Osirion has been graced with many female god-kings, the Sky Pharaoh of legend is almost universally imagined as male, and the cultists operating under Meret-Hetef all referred to the wrath of their “Master,” not “Mistress.” The only sensible course of action is to journey to Tephu, City of Reeds, whose Great Library houses the combined knowledge of centuries of Osirian scribes. It is only there that this “Forgotten Pharaoh” has any hope of being unmasked.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 3.


Adventure 3: Shifting Sands prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


City of the Reed People
In circa -1600 AR, Pharaoh Djederet II established three sister cities along the confluence of the Asp and Crook Rivers to celebrate the geographical origin of Osirion’s most important natural resource, the Sphinx River, without whose seasonal flooding civilization could never have existed in northeastern Garund’s unforgiving deserts. These cities were An, Tephu and Wati.

Djederet II, in the tradition of pre-Keleshite Osirian rulers, was a devout Nethysian. While fate conspired to transform Wati into the center of Osirian Pharasma-worship, An and Tephu were spared such metamorphoses, and the All-Seeing Eye still dominates religious life in the latter two cities. In fact, Tephu’s waty-a or governor, Deka An-Keret, doubles as Tephu’s High Priestess of Nethys, running the city from within the imposing Sanctuary of Nethys in Tephu’s Old City.

Even that structure, however, is dwarfed by the turquoise dome of the Great Library of Tephu, the most extensive depository of knowledge in all of Garund. The city’s early settlers made the fortuitous discovery that the Sphinx’s west bank provides the ideal environment for the cultivation of papyrus, and Tephu now manufactures scrolls and parchments for all of Osirion. The locals say that “papyrus does not keep secrets” and that “all knowledge returns to Tephu,” and that knowledge resides within the labyrinthine stacks of the Great Library. As the library’s collections grew, Tephu attracted scribes, scholars and historians, and Tephu became a cultural and scholastic hub for southern Osirion, with the desert-facing Gate of the Moon just outside the Old City serving as a particularly popular site for philosophical debate. In the nearby Academy of Scribes, scholars and apprentices dream of the day when their own exegeses find their place among the stacks. The Old City also houses the luxurious hammam of Jebel and the old twin temples to Thoth and Maat, the Houses of Order and Wisdom, whose priests have an ongoing rivalry with the unflappable curators of the Great Library.

The wealth of the papyrus trade inevitably attracted other merchants to Tephu. The city guard, led by the stern but fair Commander Abdallah, restricts peddlers and blasphemer from entering the Old City, but the devout Abadaran encourages their mercantile practices in the rest of the city, and one cannot walk a step in the New City without being assaulted by offers of every conceivable commodity, from camels, dates and spices to magic carpets and companionship. The merchants of Tephu live to haggle and won’t ever back down from what they perceive as a potential sale; in the medina, the haggling gets so aggressive that local orphans hire themselves out as guides, ostensibly helping shoppers avoid pickpockets and swindlers, but in actuality these street rats are paid by the merchants to guide travelers to just the right stalls.

Wadjet’s Walk, flanking the long canal of the same name, is Tephu’s wealthiest district, navigated daily by emissaries and rich caravans from across the continent. Here, the Palace of Gentle Reeds is the pharaoh’s personal estate in Tephu, though it is more often occupied by one of his visiting courtiers. Currently, the pleasure barge of Her Excellency Muminofrah of Sothis is docked nearby, and the sounds of gay revelry can be heard day and night.


The Great Library of Tephu
It’s said that even the curators of the Great Library of Tephu don’t know the extent of the knowledge contained within, and looking at teetering stacks that fill the building’s expansive blue dome, you would believe it. In reality, however, the vast, old structure only houses the library’s public collections. The scrolls, clay tablets, tomes and etchings of the Outer Stacks and the vertiginous Upper Stacks compose what’s known as the Outer Sanctum. Information deemed too esoteric or dangerous for public consumption is held in the Inner Sanctum, which spreads beneath the city like some arcane root system. Even now, it’s not unusual for a merchant to tear down a basement wall, hoping to expand his storehouse, and uncover a long-forgotten wing, requiring the immediate intervention of the haty-a, who must oversees all access to the Inner Sanctum’s many stacks and chambers. Even with permission from the governor, researchers in the Inner Sanctum must be prepared to contend with the traps, guardian beasts and clockwork automatons put in place to safeguard and maintain these dangerous depositories.

So long as visitors respect the library’s restrictions on access and appear to have a genuine scholarly purpose, the curators will offer any assistance possible. Even with their help, however, our research in the Outer Sanctum was unable to turn up any additional information on the Forgotten Pharaoh or his cultists. In fact, many relevant scrolls seem to have been hastily removed or relocated to more restricted wings. Some scribbled marginalia left by modern researchers hints at a “lost” pharaoh named Hakotep. All that remains of Hakotep’s legacy are the 17-square-mile earthworks known as the Slave Trenches of Hakotep. None living know the true purpose behind the strange geometric patterns and shattered obelisks of the Slave Trenches. It appears, however, that the pharaoh who oversaw their construction was also associated, in some older scrolls, with a hieroglyph showing a winged triangle--the flying pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh.

The marginalia point to other works contained within three of the Inner Sanctum’s collections: the Spiral Archive that winds beneath the Great Chamber of Knowledge; the Dark Depository, which lies at the bottom of a 450-foot shaft; and the Vault of Hidden Wisdom, the entrance to which has been lost to time. These collections are only accessible at haty-a Deka An-Keret’s discretion, but the governor was strangely reticent. After forestalling a meeting for three days running, she summarily dismissed our entreaties, stating that nothing could be gained by digging up old myths about the Sky Pharaoh.


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 3-1: Muminofrah’s Amusement prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Her Excellency Muminofrah of Sothis, Fan-Bearer on the Right Side of the King
As luck would have it, Deka An-Keret is not the highest authority currently dwelling in Tephu. For this entire month, the city entertains a visiting courtier from the court of the Ruby Prince, Pharaoh Khemet III. As a representative of the pharaoh, Muminofrah can overturn any of the haty-a’s rulings, and she is said to treat generously with those who amuse her. Those who fail in this task will amuse Her Excellency in another way: by being fed alive to the river’s black crocodiles.

Her Excellency has just announced a chariot race through the streets of Tephu, and she has promised a “special favor” to the winning team. A local camel souk has provided beasts of burden for the event, and entry is open to all. Though the camels are ornery and smell like overripe cheese, winning this race may be the only way to secure access to the Great Library’s Inner Sanctum and the secrets of the Forgotten Pharaoh.


Now read the scenario card....


Cultist Charioteers (read when revealed)
The raceway weaved in and out of alleys, down cobbled stairs, under washing lines and through the crowded, smoke-filled medina. At the end of the first block, a new chariot barreled out from a blind alley, trampling some spectators in the process and establishing a clear lead. It was hard to see through the dust and the commotion, but the drivers of the offending chariot appeared to be wearing golden masks....


Cameltrops (read when revealed)
The masked cultists were not the only racers willing to engage in a little skullduggery to get ahead. As the leading chariots emerged from a covered market into the blinding sunlight, they found their path strewn with caltrops. Camels’ hooves are exceptionally soft, and the beasts lack the intelligence to avoid such traps, buying some time for the trailing racers to regain the lead.


Camel Race Finish Line (read when encountering)
The camel race began and ended within view of Muminofrah’s pleasure barge. Jugglers, fire-breathers, bards and other entertainers cover every inch of the vessel, and it wallows noticeably low in the waters of the canal. Reclining on a pile of pillows in the center of the action, barely contained by her tight-fitting, wine-colored silks, Her Excellency Muminofrah cheered on the racers while a half-naked, well-oiled slave fed her grapes on the vine. In a babylike hand she clutched a single white ostrich feather, the symbol of her official station in the Ruby Prince’s court. The finish line was within sight!


Muminofrah’s Favor (read after acquiring)
Welcoming the winning chariot team onto her barge, Her Excellency Muminofrah treated the racers to her “special favor”: a big, sloppy kiss on the mouth. Quivering with laughter, she proceeded to extend an open “invitation” to join her for dinner every night during her stay in Tephu. Finally, her slaves hauled out the race’s official prize, a massive chest containing whatever goods and valuables caught Her Excellency’s eye as her litter was carried through the medina. These included a soapstone lion, carved on the bottom with her seal, that Her Excellency assured us would open doors throughout Osirion. To open the doors to the Inner Sanctum, however, we will have to continue playing to the whims of the capricious courtier.


Scenario 3-2: Quiet, Please prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Inner Sanctum
After composing an impromptu ballad in Her Excellency’s honor over a monstrous repast of fermented crocodile tongue and pickled dates, we had amused Muminofrah sufficiently to convince her to grant us another favor. With a single clap of her soft, long-nailed hands, Her Excellency summoned the haty-a and ordered the governor to open access to the Great Library’s Inner Sanctum. The priestess of Nethys was powerless to refuse the noble’s desire, but she was only willing to issue a single day’s pass to one collection at a time, an arrangement that pleased Her Excellency the Fan-Waver greatly, as it would require us to continue our daily visits to her pleasure barge and remain in her good graces for as long as our research should last.

The chambers of the Inner Sanctum are as diverse and dangerous as the collections they house. The Spiral Archive’s main collection is essentially a deep pit lined with shelves and ladders, criss-crossed by twisty, slender bridges; both the ladders and the bridges are constructed from magically strengthened papyrus. The Dark Depository houses tomes so forbidden that they have spawned nameless things that stalk its trapped corridors. The Vault of Hidden Wisdom’s location was initially forgotten, but research in the other chambers revealed a trick door on an otherwise nondescript bathhouse wall; the mechanism to open it is only visible when the long shadow of the Tower of Ra’s Glory in the New City strikes the wall at dawn at the height of midsummer. Although it has been many long ages since the vault was visited by living scholars, its stacks are still patrolled by clockwork soldiers, wound every day by the clockwork menial who keeps the forgotten shelves free of dust. Somewhere in this vault is said to be a fresco celebrating the life and accomplishments of Chisisek, the famed Osirian architect who designed Hakotep’s floating tomb.


Now read the scenario card....


Great Library of Tephu (read when permanently closed)
Behind a hidden door decorated with a bisected eye--one of the symbols of Nethys--were a few scrolls describing the life of Hakotep I, whose feats contributed to the legend of the Sky Pharaoh. The scrolls describe a war with the neighboring Shory people of the Mwangi Expanse, who were said to travel the skies in magnificent flying cities, subjugating those beneath. Unwilling to let the great Osirian Empire fall to these foreigners, Hakotep somehow (the scrolls are unclear on this) stole the Shory’s secrets and used them to construct a vast weapon to be used against them. The conclusion of this story isn’t told, but another scroll tells how Hakotep hired the architect Chisisek to design a floating pyramid to house the pharaoh’s sarcophagus, ensuring that the secrets of Shory magic died with him. As soon as the structure was completed, Chisisek himself was slain so that the Sky Pharaoh’s pyramid would forever be his greatest achievement.


Vault of Hidden Wisdom (read when permanently closed)
A trapped false ceiling in the central Rotunda of the Vault of Hidden Wisdom hid a frescoed ceiling dome dedicated to the architectural prodigy Chisisek, designer of the greatest wonders of ancient Osirion--including the “winged” pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh. In addition to the intricate tombs and enigmatic statues the architect created, the fresco points to the location of the architect’s own tomb in a region known as the Parched Dunes. The fringes of the illustration are cluttered with confusing geometric patterns that at times appear to depict winged cities waging war against an impossibly large weapon topped by a winged triangle.


Voices of the Spire (read when encountering)
Note: Despite the name, this card represents the curators of the Great Library.
The curators of the Great Library are exceedingly courteous when dealing with authorized visitors, but they do not hesitate to use force when the library’s rules are broken--for example, when the noise of a scuffle with a theletos aeon threatens to disturb the other patrons’ concentration.


Tephu Librarian (read when encountering)
Clockwork constructs are the ideal overseers of a library as vast and dangerous as that in Tephu. Requiring neither food, water nor sunlight, they can keep the shelves organized and the reading tables clean for centuries without outside intervention. At the same time, they are immune to coercion and other forms of mental dominance, and with their superhuman strength and hardened metal frames, they can easily transport unauthorized visitors away from sensitive areas without causing undue damage to the fragile tomes.


Theletos (read when encountering)
Just as the paracletus aeons study the duality of logic and emotion, theletos aeons safeguard the duality of free will and prophecy. Following an unfathomable code, they grant knowledge of future events to some and purge them from the minds of others. With their crystalline tentacles, they can drain their victim of his sense of destiny or overwhelm him with knowledge of unavoidable fates. A theletos dwelling within the Great Library’s Inner Sanctum seemed to believe that the balance of fate depended on the secrecy of the scrolls contained therein, attacking any who attempted to gain their knowledge.


Deka An-Keret (read when encountering)
With each appearance before Her Excellency Muminofrah, the haty-a became noticeably more hostile toward us, and it became clear that she had personal reasons for wanting to keep us from completing our research. Waiting times became ever longer and the day passes became ever more restrictive, sometimes requiring us to keep a log of every scroll perused or perform some other mind-addlingly arbitrary task. On some occasions, the haty-a herself accompanied us on our research, hovering like a vulture, waiting for one of us to slip up and unwittingly violate some obscure code of conduct.


Udjebet (read after acquiring)
In the Spiral Archive’s small, uncharacteristically mundane reading room, we encountered this medusa researching magical rings. Her slender fingers were already buried beneath dozens of rings made of iron, gold, turquoise, bone, and even twists of reed and twine. Clearly obsessed, she offered to escort us past the archive’s more dangerous guardians in exchange for a pretty silver ring she spied on one of our fingers. Although Udjebet had not gained access to the Inner Sanctum through official channels (medusas don’t care much for social niceties), she turned out to be quite friendly and eagerly offered her future assistance, should we encounter any unneeded trinkets on our quest.

With the medusa’s help, we were able to locate the Scrolls of Inquiry, a series of interrogations carried out by Pharaoh Djederet II against a secret cult known as the Sacrosanct Order of the Blue Feather. The cultists, a Nethysian sect, were obsessed with the accumulation and preservation of arcane knowledge. Most of them refused to speak, even under the most terrible tortures the pharaoh could devise, but one young member of the sect broke under the Trial of the Seventy-Seven Scarabs and confessed to an unforgivable sin: breaking into Hakotep’s tomb before it took flight and performing an occult ritual to split the pharaoh’s soul with the aim of questioning his spirit and learning its secrets. The ritual divided the pharaoh’s soul into three parts. His ka was bound to his golden funerary mask; his ib was contained within his heart; and his ba remained trapped within the pharaoh’s mummy, unable to proceed to the afterlife until the three parts of his soul were reunited.

Outraged by this blasphemy, Djederet II, himself a priest of Nethys, had the known cult members put to death and the mask sealed away in a secret reliquary beneath a temple of Nethys in the newly constructed city of Wati. The heart, containing Hakotep’s ib, had already been secreted away by the Sacrosanct Order somewhere in the capital city of Sothis. To discourage others from blaspheming against the pharaoh, Djederet had Hakotep’s life and accomplishments purged from the historical records. Over time, the legend of the “Sky Pharaoh” gained a life of its own in Osirian folklore, even as Hakotep himself was forgotten. The scrolls suggest that the Sacrosanct Order of the Blue Feather was not completely wiped out and that, while their attempts to communicate with Hakotep’s soul had failed, they still sought ways to access its secrets. Whether there is any correlation between this Nethysian sect and the fanatical masked cultists remains to be seen.


Scenario 3-3: Sting Operation prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Thriae
The thriae are a hivelike, caste-based race of insectoid humanoids who inhabit hexagonal mounds in the rocky desert. They are best known for their production of merope, a honey-like substance with potent psychotropic effects that vary based on the individual. Thriae dancers who consume merope are able to channel their connection with the natural world into performances of literally stunning beauty, while thriae soldiers use the substance to enhance their martial prowess and the rare thriae seers consume merope to gain access to prophetic visions and hidden truths of the universe. Non-thriae humanoids usually fall into a blissful stupor, and it is in this state that the hive’s queen keeps her consorts until they die and are consumed by her larvae. Thriae are universally female, and only the queen is capable of reproducing, but the entire hive participates in the rearing of the larvae, with the role of “mother” granted to a senior member of the larva’s caste.

Though much rarer than the worker and soldier castes, the thriae seers are renowned for their gifts of prophecy, and it was a great relief when we spotted the entrance to a thriae mound on the outskirts of the Parched Dunes, thinking that the seer could divine the precise location of Chisisek’s tomb and save us days of dangerous wandering. Though secretive, Thriae are normally diplomatic with outside races, offering their addictive merope and visions in exchange for healthy male consorts for their queen.

It was a shock, then, when we arrived to find the hive in shambles, littered with the corpses of thriae soldiers and workers, with great holes torn in the wax-like walls where the developing larvae are normally kept. We were immediately surrounded by angrily buzzing soldiers and marched before a thriae general named Xerippe, who accused us of stealing the hive’s larvae and participating in the murder of their queen. The bodies of a few human cultists wearing golden pharaonic masks hinted at the true picture of what transpired, but Xerippe refused to believe that we were not allied with the masked murderers and thieves, insisting that we prove our friendly intentions by recovering the stolen children ourselves.


Now read the scenario card....


Stolen Larvae (read when encountering)
The Forgotten Pharaoh cultists clearly underestimated the ferocity of a thriae hive in full swarm. Rather than stay to fight the merope-wild, venom-wielding warriors, the cultists stashed the bulky, grublike children and ran, hoping to return with greater numbers to complete the subjugation of the hive. Fortuitously, whatever sinister plan they had for the larvae required keeping them alive, and the thriae offspring are still relatively unharmed. Unfortunately, a thriae search party happened upon us at the moment we uncovered the grubs, leading to another misunderstanding.


Thriae Dancer (read after defeating)
Thriae dancers are imbued with inhuman beauty and grace. They spend most of their lives isolated from the rest of the hive, dancing in one another’s company with an almost religious fervor. Occasionally, they are asked to perform for the queen, seers or other high-ranking thriae, but their merope-inspired dances are seldom witnessed by outsiders, who (it is rumored) would be driven mad by the sheer beauty of the spectacle.


Thriae Soldier (read after defeating)
Tough, agile thriae soldiers prefer to fight from a distance with bows and arrows, which they tip with poison from their own stingers. They fashion their own intricately carved weapons, which are often decorated to resemble insectoid limbs or masses of crawling wasps. Far more populous than the seers and dancers, they form dangerous swarms in combat, each soldier willing to sacrifice her own life to draw a troublesome foe within range of her sisters’ stings.


Xerippe (read when encountering)
Xerippe is the general of the thriae hive, ably commanding the other soldiers. While some of the other castes are willing to listen to reason, Xerippe and her cohort are still riding a merope-fueled rage from their battle with the masked cultists and so distraught over the loss of their queen that they leave combat the only option. They will only lay down their bows to avoid harming their larvae, the future of their hive.


Zizzira (read when encountering)
Zizzira is the sole surviving seer of this thriae hive. After the death of their queen, she is the highest-ranking member of the hive and will ultimately be responsible for rallying together the survivors and guiding them across the desert to merge with a stronger hive, for without the royal merope of a living queen, they cannot rear a fertile queen from the larvae, and their bloodline will end with the current generation. As the oracle of her people, Zizzira knows all this, and if she bears herself with a certain sadness, it’s combined with the resolve of a true seer. She knows that whatever must be must be; for now, she cares only for the safety of her hive’s younglings.


Scarab of Mummy Defense (read after acquiring)
After all the stolen larvae had been recovered, the seer Zizzira emerged from her meditation chamber, flanked by the surviving dancers and soldiers. “Our hive was weakened, and you did not have to aid us,” she said in her sonorous, buzzing voice. “We will do what we can to return the favor. We will need all of our remaining merope to endure the upcoming trek to join with the hive to the east. Perhaps, though, we could offer a gift of knowledge.” With that, she told us that, in her meditations, after inquiring about the fate of her hive, she looked into the location of Chisisek’s tomb and found a small pyramid nestled in a valley to the north, beyond a section of desert known as the Dunes of Death. “The dung beetles who attacked our hive even now make their way there, but they are unaware of the hunger that dwells below. They are led by a human sorcerer and a winged lion, both with skin as black as night. In the hidden pyramid, a nest of serpents lurks, coiled to strike. But I sense these are only thrall to a far greater darkness that stirs in the distant north, within the face of the faceless.”

To supplement these cryptic clues, Zizzira presented us with a small golden brooch in the shape of a scarab. Belonging to one of the hive’s merope-addicted male drones, a former adventurer, the brooch provides protection against the undead guardians frequently found in Osirian tombs. The ruby, representing the solar disk pushed across the heavens by the celestial scarab Khepri, glows faintly in the presence of mummies, and the brooch is also enchanted to absorb curses and disease on behalf of its wearer.


Scenario 3-4: Devouring Dunes prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Dunes of Death
The Dunes of Death are an otherwise unremarkable patch of white sand desert with a menacing history. For centuries, caravan routes across the desert have mysteriously disappeared, leaving no trace of their passing. The sultan at the time of the first disappearances dispatched an official military convoy to investigate, thinking that the merchant caravans had run afoul of gnoll slavers or irate elementals, but when they also failed to report back, he declared the region a No Man’s Land and returned his attention to economic and political matters. After the Khemet bloodline regained the throne, the pharaohs wisely continued this policy of non-interference, reasoning that the will of the desert will always hold dominion over the will of man, and any travelers foolish enough to attempt the crossing deserved whatever mysterious fate befell them. Speculations of the desert’s dangers range from an enormous roc capable of lifting an elephant in each talon to the hidden entrance of a subterranean palace of opulent crystal, but nobody knows for certain. For better or worse, the mystery is about to be solved, as according to the seer Zizzira, Chisisek’s tomb can only be accessed by passing over the Dunes of Death. Overhead, a shrill screech pierces the air as a black leonine silhouette wheels against the blinding sky.


Now read the scenario card….


Forgotten Pharaoh Cultist (read after defeating)
The cultists attacked us from two directions at once, a tactic reminiscent of a scorpion’s pincer crushing its prey. Some, judging from the inflamed welts on their bodies, appeared to be the survivors of the raid on the thriae hive, fleeing north across the open desert. Others seemed to have tracked us from Tephu, no doubt under orders to recover the Mask of Hakotep. When killed, these cultists did something new: tearing open their desert robes, they revealed a cartouche of a winged pyramid carved painfully into their chests, the pyramid’s capstone dominated by a massive staring eye. Beginning from the eye, the scarred cartouche began to glow with white, cleansing flames, which quickly spread across the cultists’ bodies, consuming them, their clothing, and their belongings, including the golden masks. The remaining pile of white ash was soon scattered by the desert wind, becoming one with the dunes.


Sand Kraken (read when encountering)
Though rare, the sand kraken is one of the deadliest forces in the desert. This octopus-like creature spends most of its life entirely buried beneath the sand, seldom straying far from its lair. When it senses the vibrations of prey, it extends its ten pillar-sized tentacles from the sand, grasping and crushing. After disabling its prey by squeezing the life from his body, the sand kraken pulls its victim beneath the sand to be swallowed by its massive, beaked maw. While its tentacles can be severed, they will regenerate within a week’s time, and the sand kraken cannot be truly killed until its body is unearthed and destroyed. This bloated beast is the one responsible for the desert’s deadly reputation.


Akitar (read after defeating)
The falcon-headed hieracosphinx is the least intelligent and most brutish of the four primary breeds of sphinx, the others being the beautiful, riddle-loving gynosphinx, the proud, philosophizing androsphinx, and the greedy, ram-headed criosphinx. Hieracosphinxes can seldom be tamed, and when used as pets or mounts, it is often the result of some magical compulsion. They tend to disorient their prey with ear-splitting shrieks before swooping down to attack, pinning their foe beneath their leonine mass and tearing relentlessly with great hooked claws. The spiked, metallic mask on this hieracosphinx shows it to be the charmed pet of the sorcerer Khabekh-Shu.


Khabekh-Shu (read after defeating)
The cultist sorcerer Khabekh-Shu was nearly a force of nature himself, lashing out with storms of conjured lightning and acid splashes, then flying away whenever he found himself at a disadvantage. He seemed to have formed some special bond with his golden funerary mask, using the mask itself as focus for his sorceries and drawing upon it to heal wounds that would have felled a normal human. Twice he collapsed to the sand, and twice he rose to do battle again, determined to claim the Mask of the Forgotten Pharaoh as his prize. Were it not for the insatiable hunger lurking below, we would probably be battling him still.


Agymah (read after acquiring)
North of the Dunes of Death is a small oasis where a merchant had stopped to rest and water their camels. The head of the caravan, Agymah, offered us coffee, honeyed locusts and other refreshments. Their relief at our presence was palpable; it appears the caravan was travelling to Tephu to sell some arcane scrolls acquired at the port in Sothis to the Great Library. Wishing to avoid the expensive fees associated with hiring a riverboat to journey up the Sphinx River, the caravan foolishly chose to cut across the Parched Dunes, and have since narrowly escaped no fewer than three bands of gnoll slavers, a pack of hungry basilisks, and a mummified gynosphinx and are beginning to reconsider their travel arrangements. Noticing that we appeared well-armed and well-provisioned, Agymah fronted the idea of merging our caravans until we should return to civilization. In exchange for our protection against bandits and desert vermin, he offered us first pick of his scrolls...for a fair price, of course.


Scarab Brooch (read after acquiring)
The masked sorcerer Khabekh-Shu wore this simple decoration on his throat, a stylized scarab with wings outspread and a polished emerald inset. Drawing upon the beetle’s spiritual role as psychopomp of Pharasma and guide to the souls of the dead, the brooch has been enchanted to aid in navigation and survival, especially when the time comes to sally forth toward new horizons. Although their purposes differ, it makes a nice set with the one we received from Zizzira.


Scenario 3-5: In Search of Chisisek prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Chisisek’s Tomb
Nestled in a hidden valley, surrounded on three sides by sheer sandstone cliffs, Chisisek’s tomb is surprisingly spartan considering the architect’s renown. It gives the impression of being designed and built in a hurry; lathes and loose stones still litter the site. In the heart of the valley, a temple has been erected to honor Chisisek’s architectural accomplishments, although no mention is made of his work on behalf of Hakotep I. A nearby cave overlooking the valley is meticulously carved with detailed figures and verse in Ancient Osiriani hieroglyphics. The poetry praises the changing nature of the dunes and is interspersed with riddles that appear unsolvable; more likely, their solutions only make sense to those fluent in Ancient Osiriani. The tomb itself was built high on a cliff face, but rather than work through its requisite traps and guardians, someone has blown a hole straight through to the burial chamber using blast stone or some similar alchemical compound. A large sarcophagus there is decorated with Chisisek’s cartouche, an owl inside a house, but the lid has been cast aside and the sarcophagus is empty. Sounds issuing from deeper within the tomb suggest that the graverobbers are still present, searching for the hidden treasure chamber.


Now read the scenario card….


Forgotten Pharaoh Cultist (read after defeating)
The cultists seemed unsurprised by our arrival; it was clear that the sorcerer Khabekh-Shu had somehow dispatched a warning to his masters before his death. Taking advantage of their earlier arrival, they arranged themselves on the narrow bridges overlooking the valley and high on the cliff walls, where they could harass us without immediate repercussion. There was one good thing about their presence: the tomb’s guardians seemed to recognize those who had defiled their crypt and, as we eliminated the masked interlopers, permitted us a sort of grudging respect.


Warrior Dolls (read after defeating)
The architect in charge of Chisisek’s tomb must have attended the same classes as the one who designed Akhentepi’s in Wati, for this one, too, had a complement of doll-sized defenders. Rather than spear-wielding warriors, however, these were tiny slaves waving miniature picks, chisels and hammers.


Lamia Sisters (read after defeating)
The lamyros are a cursed race, all women, of myriad form. The lesser, more common lamias, like the Amushet sisters in Wati, have the upper bodies of beautiful women and the lower bodies of lions, while the more powerful lamia matriarchs have the form of enormous serpents from the belly down. Lamias of either variety are driven by petty greed and lust and can charm other humanoids with a touch. Lamyros of even more monstrous forms have been spotted in the lands once belonging to the decadent Thassilonian Empire, their ancestral home. All lamias descend from a single oracle of Pharasma, Lamia of Avalos, who was blessed by true sight but chose instead to deliver false prophecy in exchange for coin. As punishment for their blasphemy, the seer and her offspring were cursed to take on monstrous forms more befitting their slimy natures. The matriarch Jamirah has appointed her sisters, Bekutenre and Inihete, as lieutenants of the cult, and they enjoy lording over and seducing the human cultists while stashing the best loot for themselves.


Theletos (read when encountering)o
Theletos aeons, as guardians of the duality of fate and freedom, are naturally attracted to world-changing events, where the actions of one individual can shape the course of history. This might explain why the theletos appear drawn to sites associated with the Forgotten Pharaoh, whose accomplishments were so terrible that they had to be expunged from history. Knowledge of the buried past is itself a kind of prophecy, and the aeons may have judged these secrets unfit for the minds of men. It could also be that Hakotep’s true role in history has yet to be enacted.


Jamirah (read after defeating)
Jamirah, a lamia matriarch, is the leader of the cult’s activities at Chisisek’s Tomb. Taking full advantage of her serpentine form, she was fond of slithering away when faced with danger, effortlessly navigating crags and narrow passes no human could traverse. When her strength began to sap, however, Jamirah embraced death like the coils of a constrictor. Rushing her attackers, with a shout of “For Hakotep!” she tore open her breastplate, exposing the Sky Pharaoh’s cartouche, and immolated herself in a white-hot explosion that shook the walls of the valley.


Tetisurah (read after acquiring)
For millennia, the gynosphinx Tetisurah has stood sentinel over this valley. When the cultists arrived in the valley, they managed to ambush her and held her imprisoned in a stasis field in the temple’s ground floor. Unable to move or even cry out in pain, she was the object of countless abuses at the hands of the lamias and the human cultists, who spat on her, insulted her race, and used her as a living dummy for weapons practice. She is grateful for being freed from the spell, which dissipated upon the death of the lamia matriarch Jamirah, but she is also ashamed at her failure to protect Chisisek’s tombs from ransackers. Her reasons for protecting the architect’s tomb are hers alone, but now that the cultists have removed the architect’s mummy from its rightful resting place, she considers it her sworn duty to recover it and return it to this valley of repose.

Under the stasis spell, Tetisurah overheard the lamia cultists mention taking Chisisek to the “Sightless Sphinx” for questioning. “I know naught of this sightless one,” she hastened to add. “I know only the sky, the dunes, and the solitude of my cave. It is possible that she is a new arrival to these lands, or that she has only recently lost her vision and once went by another name. It is a riddle stronger than any I know--and I have unraveled many. But I pledge to accompany thee until we’ve uncovered the true face of this enigma.”


Sun Falcon Pectoral (read after acquiring)
Tetisurah is a worshipper of Horus, the old Osirian god of the sun and sky. The Osirians knew him as a falcon-headed man, but Tetisurah the god in his more primal aspect as a blazing falcon. This pectoral necklace, intended to rest high on the chest against the wearer’s collarbone, depicts Horus in this aspect, great wings outspread as he carries the sun and moon in their cycles across the sky. It can be used to call upon the Sun Falcon’s wrath to cast down any adversary, particularly those undead abominations, children of Set, who wander the Dark Desert.


Adventure 3: Shifting Sands epilogue (read the following entries after finishing the Adventure)


Riddle of the Sphinx
The Cult of the Forgotten Pharaoh has absconded with the mummy of Chisisek, an ancient Osirian architect who constructed Hakotep I’s flying tomb. This can mean only one thing: the cultists are seeking the location of the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb so that they can reunite the three parts of the pharaoh’s soul. They presumably already have his ib, contained within the pharaoh’s heart, which was hidden somewhere in the capital city of Sothis. Hakotep’s ba is trapped within his mummy, which rests in a floating pyramid somewhere in the skies above Osirion. Since all records of the flying tomb were destroyed, the cult must be planning to communicate with the mummy of Chisisek to ascertain the tomb’s final location. Do they wish to revive the pharaoh, or are they merely following in the footsteps of the Sacrosanct Order of the Blue Feather, the Nethysian sect that split the pharaoh’s soul to begin with in a bid to learn his secrets? In either case, they will not succeed without the pharaoh’s ka, contained within his golden funerary mask. To stop the cultists, we must locate the Sightless Sphinx. Could this have something to do with the “face of the faceless” mentioned by Zizzira, the thriae seer? If so, then our destination lies somewhere to the north. For now, our search for answers takes us deeper into the Parched Dunes.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 4.


Adventure 4: Secrets of the Sphinx prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Rumors on the Wasting Wind
Although the gynosphinx Tetisurah knows nothing of the Sightless Sphinx, to whom the Forgotten Pharaoh cultists have carried the architect Chisisek’s mummy for “interrogation,” her meditative roves have occasionally brought her into the northern half of the Parched Dunes, so she has some familiarity with the landscape. With a sphinx’s predilection for riddles and poesy, she found only frustration in talk of mundane details such as dangerous fauna, hazardous terrain and indigenous tribes, frequently lapsing into blank verse exegeses on the desert’s timeless beauty and its many enigmas. What follows is a summary of pertinent information painfully extracted from many long hours of wandering conversation.

The sentient population of the northern dunes primarily comprises half-beast races like the winged, lion-legged maftets--most decidedly not relatives of the infinitely more cultured sphinxes--and girtablilus, also known as “scorpionfolk.” Gnoll slavers, merchant caravans and nomadic herders also make occasional forays into the region, but they are not permanent residents. Elementals, genies and man-sized insects are as frequent here as in any other part of Osirion’s primeval deserts, but notably, a band of genies--mostly efreet accompanied by one shaitan--have been making frequent treasure-hunting expeditions into the nearby tombs and ruins, stirring up trouble with the desert’s more peaceful residents.

Gynosphinxes tend to live hermetic lives, but Tetisurah is on good terms with one other of the desert’s inhabitants, a royal naga named Zereletan. Assuming the form of a weathered human explorer, Zereletan has taken up residence in a deconsecrated temple of Sarenrae, the Dawnflower, whose worship was popular during the Keleshite Interregnum. He is as prideful and privative as the sphinx, which explains their mutual respect, and like Tetisurah, Zereletan has appointed himself guardian of the desert’s ancient secrets. He has a penchant for finding treasures long buried, but she is certain he knows nothing of the Sightless Sphinx.

Tetisurah’s reminiscences frequently returned to the topic of a labyrinthine structure not far from Chisisek’s valley of repose. Composed of bleached, polished stones that are unsettlingly reminiscent of human skulls, it could be the foundation to some destroyed or never-completed temple, but the purpose of the structure and the nature of its demise remain a mystery. Whatever its history, the labyrinth exhibits perfect radial symmetry, clearly visible from the air (which was the vantage point of the winged sphinx when last she saw it). She has never investigated the site closely, but she frequently gazes on it from afar as inspiration for her poetry.

In the same general area stands a black stone obelisk. Tetisurah claims that it is perfectly smooth, unmarred by any markings that would indicate its purpose or dedication to a particular Osirian god. The air near the obelisk hums with energy, like the sky immediately before a thunderstorm, and the sand at its base is littered with charred bones. On the subject of storms, she claims that lightning strikes have a way of finding the obelisk as though it “drinks the light of the heavens.”

Tetisurah also mentioned a “sleepwalking giant” that resides near the enigmatic labyrinth. Although she describes it as a living thing, it is more likely some sort of statue or memorial built by the ancient Osirians--the sphinx appears confused by mortal distinctions between life and sculpture. She mentions that the giant’s skin “glows like a second sun,” indicating that it might be composed of bronze or a similar metal; that it wears a “circlet of serpents, an icon of Osirian royalty; and that it “walks without motion,” suggesting a statue carved in an aggressive posture. Since Tetisurah has never seen the giant’s features up close, she believes it may be the “Faceless” mentioned in the thriae seer’s prophecy, or that it might be prevailed upon for further information regarding the Sightless Sphinx.


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 4-1: The Dragon’s Garden prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Sentinel of the Sands
Having no other leads, we headed first for Tetisurah’s “sleepwalking giant.” The first glimpse of the muscular, humanoid bronze form looming over the dunes confirmed my suspicions that the “giant” was in fact a statue of some kind, likely modeled upon some forgotten pharaoh--not the Forgotten Pharaoh but another, lesser ruler. Closer inspection, however, revealed a square hatch hidden high on the statue’s back, and opening this secret door unveiled a small room filled with levers, switches, gears and pedals. Not a mere statue at all, then, but an ancient automaton intended to accept a human pilot! Unfortunately, the gears and levers were inert and unyielding, with several oddly shaped depressions indicating that key components had been removed, perhaps to discourage thieves.

Seeing the mechanical workings, however, spurred another memory in the gynosphinx, who now claims that she has seen strange glints in the sand while flying over this area of desert. Sandstorms and the constant shifting of the dunes have scattered the components far and wide, but a keen eye and a strong arm should be sufficient to unearth the missing parts. The towering automaton should prove invaluable in crossing the vast stretches of desert that lie before us.


Now read the scenario card….


Sentinel Part (read after defeating)
The burnished bronze components were awkward and heavy, but even outside of the mechanical colossus, they had their uses--as a club, for example. Some animating principle still guided them, causing them to grasp and swipe at their surroundings, and they had a weird affinity for other forms of machinery, able to interface with locks and gadgets in surprising ways. Whatever arcanists created the massive bronze golem were very clever indeed.


Keferuzagra (read when encountering)
The desert-dwelling blue dragons have a logical, calculating disposition and are obsessed with mathematical order. In retrospect, it should have been obvious that a blue dragon laid out the “labyrinth” of polished, rounded stones, the symmetrical beauty of which can be fully appreciated only from the air. Unfortunately, we did not even notice the juvenile dragon camouflaged against the blue expanse of the sky until he was already upon us, wreathed in a crackling electrical aura that stunned our nearest allies. Although they like to consider themselves masters of their base emotions, in reality, most blue dragons are prone to fierce rages when their carefully arranged environs are disrupted.


Volatile Sentinel (read when encountering)
The sentinel seemed inert when we first examined it, but as we carried the missing components to their rightful housing, both they and the golem began to writhe with purpose. It wasn’t aggression, per se, but the erratic thrashing of the bronze creation’s massive limbs was no less dangerous for that. Before we could return the automaton to full operation, we would need to subdue it.


Bronze Sentinel (read after acquiring)
The inner workings of the bronze sentinel are without qualification unlike any other technology I have seen. Its makers were clearly geniuses in their day, but not genius enough that their designs were ever copied. Large as it is, it is capable of subtle manipulation using its finely articulated, lifelike limbs. In fact, it is more than sufficient for use in combat, its thick metal exterior totally shielding its inhabitant. Unfortunately, the seal on the hatch is airtight, and the automaton can only be piloted for short bursts before its interior becomes unliveably hot and close.


Efni Raan (read after acquiring)
The village of Safani on the bend of the Crook River has an unusual defense strategy against the tribes of gnoll raiders that patrol Osirion’s sands. Too small to survive by show of force and too remote to seek the protection of neighbors, the Safani villagers opted instead to disappear. Its buildings have been constructed to blend seamlessly into the dunes. This tactic has been remarkably effective so far, but apparently the gnolls have finally seen through the ruse.

Efni Raan, Safani’s leader, became very animated when one of us mentioned we sought the Sightless Sphinx. “It has a black reputation around here,” she said. “I have just departed a pride of maftets who claim to have once lived in the Sphinx’s shadow. They said that they could be of no help in Safani’s defense, as they were enmeshed in a siege of their own, and they recently lost half of their tribe to some cult. I cannot guide you to the Sphinx, but I can take you to the maftets.”


Scenario 4-2: Pride of the Dispossessed prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Maftets, Guardians of Antiquity
Often found living among abandoned ruins, maftets are a race of winged, lion-legged humanoids. While they share with sphinxes general anatomical features and an instinctive love of forgotten places, maftets are bipedal and closer to mankind in both physiology and temperament. With a social structure similar to that of lions, maftets are proud, honor-bound hunters, and in Osirion, they are associated with the lion-headed goddess Sekhmet, Lady of Slaughter. As a rite of passage, adolescent maftets must track down and slay a lamia, with whom their race has a timeless rivalry.

In a typical maftet pride, the adult females hunt while an elder, usually male, rears the cubs and leads the tribe in spiritual and strategic matters. This pride’s leader is Erayu. His hair and wings are white, his face is creased with age, but his keen eyes still burn with the will of a hunter. “My people once dwelled in the shadow of the Sightless Sphinx,” he confirmed. “But tragedy has driven us from our ancestral home. Though it is called the Sightless Sphinx, what you seek is a structure, a site with evil sunken into its every stone, in the shape of a six-legged, faceless abomination. It has been abandoned for as long as we have known it, and I know not what its original purpose might have been. Some of the young of the pride, led by that arrogant fool Userib, broke our taboos and entered the Sightless Sphinx. They emerged corrupted, some of them twisted into monstrous forms, others distorted in spirit, raving about the return of some demon king. They sought the blood of their kin, and to protect our young, I made the decision to flee.

“We eventually found our way to this walled oasis. It is newer than we would like, but there is fresh water, shade and a shrine to Sekhmet. Unfortunately, our troubles have followed us. Soon after we arrived at the oasis, we were attacked by a roving band of genies with red skin and curling horns. We beat them back, but they returned with the dawn and have beset us every day since our arrival. They want the treasures left behind by the outpost’s former inhabitants. We have no need for treasure, but we must protect this site from those who would defile it. Our strongest were lost to Userib’s foolhardy expedition or the battle that followed. We have been praying to the Mistress of Red Linen to grant us the strength to defend our new home. Maybe you are her answer. Repel the attackers, and I will personally guide you to the Sightless Sphinx, where you can lay Userib’s twisted soul to rest.”


Now read the scenario card….


Kixexa (read after defeating)
The leader of the genie invasion force, Kixexa, was a malikah, a type of noble efreeti or fire genie. She was clearly arrogant but also tactically shrewd and serious, less boastful than one would expect from one of her fiery kind. Fire simply glanced off of her blood-red skin while she tossed fireballs with precision, aiming them to get the most out of their splash damage.


Picasi (read after defeating)
Earth-aligned genies are called shaitans. Their skins are often crusted with fine gems, and the genies themselves appear to be carved from precious rock. Shaitans love treasure, and it’s likely that Picasi, as the shaitan lieutenant was known, was the driving force behind her band’s treasure-hunting expeditions. Normally, they are mortal enemies of the hot-blooded efreet, but these genies appear to have seen the wisdom in joining forces for mutual benefit. Picasi mostly fought using sneak attacks, blending into the stone of the walls then bursting forth and charging us with her five-thousand-pound mass.


Warrior Dolls (read after defeating)
Having a shaitan on your team has its advantage in a siege. Aligned with the Elemental Plane of Earth, the purple-skinned genie animated the very stones of the walls to fight against us. Though tiny, the minuscule warriors were numerous enough to keep us more than occupied.


Scenario 4-3: Shadow of the Sphinx prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Sphinx’s Shadow
We found the Sightless Sphinx in the far north of the Parched Dunes. It’s easy to see why this place has an evil reputation among the locals; there is something wordlessly malevolent about the massive sandstone structure with its crumbling, featureless visage. A dozen smaller statues of blank-faced sphinxes flank the broad avenue leading to the Sightless Sphinx’s feet. From its east flank, a long, inky shadow stretches across the sands, pinned in place with no regard for the position of the sun. To the south, is a small grove of bone-white, serrated palms. Their bleached, spear-like fronds sway gently, but the air beside the Sphinx is as still as the grave. When we neared the grove, Tetisurah reared back in horror, recognizing the jagged “fronds” as skeletal sphinx ribs mounted on the petrified trunks in some bizarre, forgotten ritual. A small outbuilding beside the larger structure houses an unusual forge lit by smokeless, silver flames that are continuously, infernally hot.

The Sightless Sphinx appears from the distance to be modeled after a gynosphinx or androsphinx, but on closer inspection certain incongruities become apparent. It has six legs, not four; its wings are leathery like a dragon’s, not feathered like a hawk’s; and its “tail” ends in a viper’s head, fangs bared. Hieroglyphs in ancient Osiriani identify the structure as a likeness of Areshkagal, the demon lord of portals, riddles and greed. A set of sandstone doors between the sphinx’s feet allows entry into the structure; a strong abjuration aura prohibits accessing the sphinx by magical means. Unfortunately, the single entrance is guarded by an encampment of scorpion-bodied girtablilus.


Girtablilus
Girtablilus, also known as scorpionfolk, are native to Osirion’s deserts. Among the hazy dunes, they could be mistaken for insect-mounted warriors, but their bare-chested, humanoid torsos are actually fused with the nearly complete form of a massive scorpion. Able to grapple with club-sized pincers and lance foes with their spearlike, venomous tails, they are formidable in close combat, though they typically prefer the reach of longspears treated with their own venom. The sting of one girtablilu, delivered with a surgical strike to the heart, can hospitalize a human man, but they are far deadlier when fighting as a swarm alongside their domesticated colossal desert scorpions. Stealth and caution are tantamount if one wants to avoid becoming a living pincushion. Like maftets and sphinxes, they are typically found guarding ancient, forgotten places, and they consider themselves the stewards of lost gods, honoring deities and rituals long ignored by their original adherents. By performing these services for the forgotten, the girtablilus believe they are helping to stave off invasion of the material plane by malevolent beings from beyond.


Now read the scenario card….


Girtablilu (read after defeating)
The scorpionfolk encampment is dominated by a long pavilion tent painted red and gold. Every hour, a pair of girtablilus enters the tent, replaced a moment later by a fresh contingent. The precision and discipline of their movements suggests a military operation: they are actively guarding the entrance to the Sightless Sphinx, not merely dwelling in its shadow as the maftets once did. Some of them patrol alongside their giant scorpion pets while others check on steel scorpion traps (a steel jaw-style trap with a poisoned metal “stinger”) half buried in the sand. For some reason, they wear talismans warding them against magical attack, suggesting that they expected to find supernatural resistance within the Sphinx. The talismans are painted with the cartouche of Hakotep, the Forgotten Pharaoh.


Orchamus (read when encountering)
The girtablilu lieutenant was a brawny man named Orchamus. He seemed almost apologetic as he swung a heavy bardiche in our direction. “Our war is not with you,” he said, snapping his pincers pensively, “but I will cut you down if I must. None may enter the Sightless Sphinx without her say-so.”


Rathos (read when encountering)
At some point during the fighting, a massive, misshapen monster burst through the doors at the Sphinx’s feet, driving a scorpionfolk warrior forward at the end of each stony fist. Unleashing a bellow of rage and pain from his crocodilian jaws, he slammed the scorpion-men into the ground, pummeling them with a fury of blows until they had been reduced to a paste of ichor, carapace and bone. Then he turned his pain-racked eyes on the closest living thing. The abomination strained to form words but gave up with a howl of anguish. Areshkagal, demon lord of greed, is known to grant the avaricious wishes of her followers in twisted ways that leave them begging for the release of death. This warped warrior clearly wished for greater strength, and his mistress delivered.


Rubila (read when encountering)
The leader of the girtablilu mercenaries was a dark-skinned scorpionfolk woman named Rubila. She was clearly a proud veteran of many battles: her skin was painted with tribal warpaint, and humanoid bones decorated her hair and clothes. Her sharp, merciless eyes missed nothing. “The Masked One warned us that you would be coming,” she said. “Her cloth-wrapped seer misses nothing. Our contract with her is only to clear the site of these feathery fiends….” She inclined her head at the maftet elder, Erayu. “...but I believe you have an item of great value to my client. Removing this thorn from her side would bring great honor to my clan.” So saying, she bared a vicious-looking falcata and tautened her sting, ready to strike.


Erayu (read after acquiring)
At the door of the Sightless Sphinx, the maftet elder, Erayu, lowered himself in a deep gesture of obeisance. “You have proven yourselves able warriors. My plan was to take you as far as these doors, but I now know where my duty lies. The corruption of Userib and his followers ultimately falls to me, so I must see to it that they are dealt with. I am no longer much of a hunter, but it would be an honor to fight at your side. My wisdom is at your disposal, as it is for all children of my pride.”


Scenario 4-4: Cult of the Sightless Sphinx prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Within the Sightless Sphinx
The interior of the Sightless Sphinx is every bit as unsettling as its exterior. From within, its purpose is clear: it is a temple to the demon lord Areshkagal, and its myriad rooms house the echoes of obscure violence and obscene rituals carried out in the sphinx-like demon’s name. The interior is primarily decorated with white stone pillars and carvings of snarling, six-legged sphinxes with dragon wings and viper tails. Sconces, bowls and columns at regular intervals hold everburning green flames. In the Grand Temple, a statue of a broad-winged demonic sphinx forms a bloodstained altar before thirteen skeletons pinned upside-down to the wall. In several rooms, the sunflower-like holy symbol of Sarenrae, the Dawnflower, have been painted on the walls beside smashed altars or bloodletting tables, but these holy images have been recently defaced, likely by the young maftets who have resumed the dead cult’s work.

More pits of silver, smokeless flame can be found throughout the temple, where the cultists forged their weapons and bloodletting implements, but these are the least of the structure’s strange features, indoor pyramids and baths arranged asymmetrically to create disturbing juxtapositions of scale and geometry. Some high-ceilinged rooms glow with artifical sunlight or glitter with false stars. An enclosed hot spring features an ominous tentacle motif, with lifelike stone tentacles rising from the steaming water. One hallway is filled from floor to ceiling with crackling lightning emanating from no visible source. In another room, blank easels surround a pile of shredded canvases; the wails of a banshee echo through this chamber. Certain doors and hallways lead nowhere, ending in incongruous walls of stone emblazoned with Sarenrae’s holy symbol. Other hallways show evidence of a great clash between the original cultists and the paladins of Sarenrae who cleansed the Sphinx of their presence. A ghostly paladin wearing a blue-and-gold tabard of Sarenrae wanders these sites, searching eternally for the demon who slew her.

One of the most important rooms in the temple is the Altar of Riddles. A pitch black, horned altar stands before a wall mural depicting the phases of the moon. Here, the devotees of Areshkagal renewed their vows to their demonic mistress by carving their own flesh with verses from the 23 Riddles of the Flesh, a text sacred to Areshkagal. Some of these riddles have been inscribed into the sides of the altar, and a bone knife carved from a child-sized rib rests on the depthless black surface, stained with ancient blood.

In the Chamber of Purification, the Areshkagal cultists once prepared their dead for burial. Now, the mummification table is stained with blood, and two blood-stained, golden masks lie on the ground beside it. The maftet cultists led by Userib were already dwelling within the Sightless Sphinx when the Forgotten Pharaoh cultists arrived. After the maftets captured two of the Forgotten Pharaoh cultists, tortured them, and sacrificed them in a demon-summoning ritual, the Forgotten Pharaohs retreated toward the Sphinx’s tail, while the maftets hold the areas nearer the entrance. Now, the two cults wage war within the temple, a twisted revival of the siege once carried out between the original inhabitants and the paladins of Sarenrae.


Now read the scenario card….


Cultist of Areshkagal (read after defeating)
The maftet cultist’s wings, once a golden color, are now charred and tipped with rusty red as though dipped in blood, and its leonine flanks have been dyed a midnight blue. Using the temple’s hidden scrying channels and their patron demon’s gift of teleportation, the corrupted maftets are able to set up bloody ambuscades, taking full advantage of the high ceilings to execute raptorial strikes on their prey. Each drop of blood they spill is a sacrifice to their demon mistress, opening the way for fiendish outsiders to enter our reality. Nor do the cultists’ own deaths go unnoticed by the shadowy demons that lurk within the Sightless Sphinx.


Heqet (read when encountering)
Once a high cleric of Areshkagal during the previous regime, Heqet has risen as an undead lord, commanding the zombies and other undead abominations left behind by the defeated demon cult. She draws strength from the undead around her, and they from her; slaying the undead cultist is as certain to enrage the lesser zombies as it is to weaken them.


Userib (read when encountering)
The leader of the corrupted maftets, Userib has fully embraced his demonic lord, and the blackness of his soul is reflected in his black, tattered wings and sable haunches. He fights with two golden sickles and the unholy magic his patron has granted him. The prideful maftet always believed himself destined to rise to rule his pride, and although he has much greater plans now, his thirst for power left him with a taste for mental domination, which he has used to spread his own zeal to the other cultists. The runic tattoos on his bronze skin glow with a noticeable heat, as though barely containing a flame raging within him.


Half-Fiend Sphinx (read when encountering)
This half-sphinx, Areshkhesbed, has been “blessed” by Areshkagal to take its mistress’ form and serve as a divine guardian of the temple. Her six feline legs are covered in soft, midnight-blue fur, and her feathery wings are blood red. Where a typical gynosphinx’s features would be those of a beautiful woman, the half-sphinx’s face is a flat, blank surface housing two beady red eyes and a slit-like mouth filled with black fangs. Her demonic patron has granted her the ability to see all that occurs within the temple’s walls and teleport at will from room to room. In addition to her razor-like claws, her very form spews contagion, and each slice into her flesh releases a cloud of noxious vapors in lieu of blood. She has been a devoted servant of Areshkagal since before the temple’s construction, and it was her guidance that led to the maftets’ indoctrination into the demonic cult. Slaying her will go some way toward preventing the demonic cult from ever rising again.


Naheeba (read after acquiring)
Before the Forgotten Pharaoh invaded their temple, the maftet cultists captured this nomad chieftain and had planned to use her in a painful summoning ritual. Luckily for the woman, Naheeba, the maftets were distracted by the arrival of the golden-masked cultists, and she has been ignored since the siege began. Naheeba has no interest in joining the fight against the Forgotten Pharaoh, but she is willing to share the esoteric bits of knowledge her tribe has gathered.


Scenario 4-5: A Woman of Entwined Souls prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Return of the Forgotten Pharaoh
At the end of Osirion’s First Age, Pharaoh Hakotep I waged an impossible war against the Shory, a legendary empire whose vast cities floated among the clouds, subjugating those below. Somehow, the pharaoh stole the Shory’s secrets, turning them against their creators by building a massive weapon of unimaginable power with the aid of the genius architect Chisisek. Upon his death, Hakotep had himself interred in a flying pyramid, also designed by Chisisek, taking his knowledge and his treasure beyond the reach of the mortals on the ground. This would have been the end of the story were it not for a Nethysian sect called the Sacrosanct Order of the Blue Feather, who performed a profane ritual to divide the pharaoh’s soul and trap it in three objects: his ka or vital spark in his golden funerary mask, his ib or will in his preserved heart, and his ba or personality in his mummy. Although the mummy ascended with the pyramid, the sect was able to smuggle out the other two parts of the pharaoh’s soul out in an unsuccessful attempt to communicate with Hakotep’s spirit and learn his secrets. When the new pharaoh, Djederet II, got wind of the sect’s blasphemous activities, he had Hakotep’s names and deeds stricken from the historical record so that the horrible deeds would never be repeated. He his the mask below an unassuming temple of Nethys in the newly built city of Wati, while the heart had already been hidden somewhere in the capital city of Sothis.

All was well until a few months ago, when a new cult arose, wearing golden funerary masks and claiming devotion to the Forgotten Pharaoh himself. In Wati, in the smuggling tunnels of the Silver Chain gang, the Forgotten Pharaoh lieutenant Meret-Hetef made the chilling announcement that the Forgotten Pharaoh had “already returned” and sought only the ba and ka to be returned to full power, suggesting that the cult already has control of the pharaoh’s heart and ib. We possess the mask, taken from the corpse of the mad necromancer Nebta-Khufre, and the remaining piece of the soul is still within the pharaoh’s floating pyramid. Only its builder, Chisisek, knows its precise location, which is why the cultists have stolen Chisisek’s mummy and brought it here.

In the belly of the Sightless Sphinx is a glowing pool exuding a rippling green light. Unbeknownst to the Forgotten Pharaoh cultists, this scrying pool can be used to see through the eyes of the snarling, white stone sphinx statues arrayed throughout the temple. Using them, we were able to overhead a conversation between cultists indicating that the Forgotten Pharaoh him/herself is in residence to oversee the interrogation of Chisisek’s mummy and the battle against the demon-worshipping maftets. The time has finally come to uncover the shadowy hand behind this masked cult.


Now read the scenario card….


Disciple of the Forgotten Pharaoh (read after defeating)
The strongest and most devoted of the Forgotten Pharaoh cult can be found here within their headquarters. Under their Master’s tutelage, they have mastered a variety of ancient curses to heap upon their foes’ heads.


Thmei (read when encountering)
Thmei is an oracle belonging to the cult of the Forgotten Pharaoh. She wears the linen wrap of her long-deceased ancestor to aid in her communication with the spirit realm. Drawing on the strength of her ancestral ally, she peers invisibly into the space between planes and strikes at foes with spectral serpents.


Forgotten Pharaoh (read after defeating)
It was immediately clear why Meret-Hetef referred to the Forgotten Pharaoh as a “she,” for the person claiming to be Hakotep was clearly female beneath her stern pharaonic mask. It’s possible that the cult lieutenant knew the person beneath the mask before her transformation into the Forgotten Pharaoh. However, by the time we encountered her, that person was no more, and the body of a Nethysian cleric now housed two souls battling for dominion. At times, her voice and mannerisms were clearly feminine, and she referred to the Forgotten Pharaoh in the same way as the other cultists, as some entity of great power for whom she served as a willing pawn. At other moments, her bearing became more regal, her voice masculine, and she spoke as though she were Hakotep. Mostly, she existed as a confused blend of both personalities, her voice issuing in dual, harmonious tones as if from a pan pipe.

When the Forgotten Pharaoh sensed danger, the more powerful soul of Hakotep rose to the surface, an indomitable force equipped with a dazzling array of offensive and defensive spells. If caught unawares, Hakotep’s ib was less strong, and it was even possible to parley with Serethet, the Nethysian cleric now trapped within her own body, and convince her to resist the pharaoh’s will.

At the end of the battle, a glowing cartouche appeared on the cleric’s skin, and it appeared she was going to burst into flame, as the lesser cultists had. Instead, a phantom heart composed of pure light emerged from her chest. On tiny wings, the heart rose up through the vaulted ceiling of the room, passing through the solid stone and out of sight. A faint tugging came from Hakotep’s mask, as though the piece of the pharaoh’s soul trapped within yearned to join its complement.

In a thin, reedy voice, the pharaoh’s influence now departed from her failing body, the cleric Serethet told her story. Driven by a passion for forgotten knowledge, the priestess spent many of her days exploring the secret archives beneath Azghaad’s Spire in Sothis, which is where she discovered Hakotep’s heart. Without thought, she reached out and touched the artifact and was instantly overpowered by the embedded fragment of the pharaoh’s soul. Although Hakotep’s ib contained many of the pharaoh’s memories, it had no knowledge of his body’s final resting place or the location of his ka.


Golden Serpent Armband (read after acquiring)
Apart from serving as a bracer, this armband in the shape of a golden serpent has been enchanted to assist in spellcasting. When its wearer casts a combat spell, the armband comes to life, unfurling from the wearer’s arm and channeling the magic into a vicious strike with its golden fangs.


Adventure 4: Secrets of the Sphinx epilogue (read the following entries after completing the Adventure)


Legacy of Hakotep
In a room within the jagged, shapeless face of the Sightless Sphinx, we found the architect Chisisek’s sarcophagus, apparently undisturbed. It’s likely that the Forgotten Pharaoh was forced to put off his “interrogation” until she had dealt with the Cultists of Areshkagal. Now that both cults have been wiped out, we can return the sarcophagus to its rightful place in Chisisek’s tomb and conduct our own ritual to commune with his spirit.

The Forgotten Pharaoh has been destroyed, but the Sky Pharaoh’s shadow still looms on the horizon. Killing Serethet seems only to have freed Hakotep’s ib from its vessel. Although we are no closer to finding Hakotep’s tomb, the fragment of his soul that rests within the golden mask can detect his presence, somewhere in the skies above Osirion. His ib and ba reunited, the Sky Pharaoh is now powerful enough to act on his own behalf instead of through puppets like Serethet. If Ptemenib is correct, placing the mask on Hakotep’s mummy will reunite his divided soul and allow it to depart this plane. But first, the pyramid must be found....
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 5.


Adventure 5: The Slave Trenches of Hakotep prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Interview with the Dead
The dead are famed for their silence. However, there are certain spells and rites designed to animate long-dormant tongues and pry secrets from spirits who have departed this plane. The nomad leader, Naheeba, knew one such ritual, and before we returned Chisisek’s sarcophagus to his tomb, we communed with his mummy to see if it had any information that might help us locate Hakotep’s floating tomb.

The upside to a pictorial alphabet such as that found in Osiriani hieroglyphics is that it one need not be fluent in its spoken language to decipher its written form, and in fact Ancient Osiriani, as written, is not that different from its modern counterpart. It is still, however, for all intents and purposes a dead language, and comprehending its spoken form is another matter entirely. Luckily for us, sphinxes have long lives and longer memories, and though she herself had not lived through Hakotep’s reign, Tetisurah knew enough Ancient Osiriani to translate for the desiccated mummy. Rituals such as this are usually limited in their effectiveness, since they cannot force the dead to divulge secrets they do not wish to, but this turned out to be a non-issue when the legendary architect was concerned. A rough translation follows:

“Stop! Stay away! You’ve come to kill me at last! I knew that adder of a pharaoh would try this...I should never have agreed to design his tomb. Ah, but it’s a thing of beauty, isn’t it? In truth, I would not take it back. The Khepsutanem and the flying pyramids...they’re my greatest works, the things for which my name will be remembered.

“You’re not them, are you? His Akhumen. No, I can see that. He calls them his Akhumen, the pharaoh’s personal guard. More like jackals! They’re the ones he sent to infiltrate the Shory cities and steal the secrets of the Aeromantic Infandibulum. They came for his generals in the week after he died, in the time it took to prepare the Khepsutanem to send his tomb into the clouds. Sixteen generals in all, in sixteen pyramids, with sixteen cores to harness the Aeromantic Infandibulum. I knew then the mistake I had made in serving that paranoid dung-beetle. I’m dead already, aren’t I? Long life to the Sky Pharaoh! Ha! I would spit, but my throat is quite parched.

“Why do you disturb my slumber? Hakotep’s tomb? There’s no way to find it. It rides invisible currents of aether, never staying in one place for long, and it’s warded against divination magic. There is one way, though. The Khepsutanem! It’s a sort of weapon designed to pluck Shory cities straight from the sky. The mad fool I was! Such power should never have existed. And it never shall! The project was never completed, you see. There’s still power there, though: enough to launch the Sky Pharaoh’s pyramid into the clouds, and enough to bring it down again, should you go about it correctly.

“Attend well: to call down the pharaoh’s tomb, you must first activate the Sekrepheres. These are great obelisks containing the power of bound elementals. Among hundreds of smaller obelisks, there are 11 built in dedication to the gods above and below. These are the ones that you must activate. You must then obtain the Pharaoh’s Key from the Akhumemnet, built to house and honor his Akhumen. Insert the Pharaoh’s Key into the central stone of the Sun Disk plaza. This will focus the power of the Sekrepheres on Hakotep’s tomb, and the Khepsutanem will perform the task it was designed for.

“That should do it, but after many years, other parts of the Khepsutanem may have fallen dormant. You might seek the aid of the shaitan Tef-Naju, whom Hakotep appointed as guardian of the Khepsutanem until such day as it could be used. Of course, the genie could not have known that the terms of his service would be so greatly extended. If you fear a confrontation with an irate genie, seek out the Hall of Crawling Thoughts, where Hakotep has imprisoned the memories and intellect of those in his service. At least I was able to escape that fate.”


Rise of the Pyramids
As we were concluding our interview with Chisisek, the nosoi psychopomp Qasin fluttered into the room, bearing an urgent message from the Pharasmin priest Ptemenib. It seems that Wati is under siege from a flying pyramid emblazoned with a five-pointed sun. Hovering over the most populated areas of the city, the pyramid is spewing forth undead abominations. Undead harpies, barely more than flying clouds of jagged bone, have parlayed with the Grand Mausoleum and are demanding the immediate sacrifice of “those who hold the pharaoh’s mask.” Ptemenib has no plans to concede to their demands, of course, but he requests aid in repelling the attack.

Chisisek, overhearing the message, began to shake with rage or fear. “That can only be the Five-Pointed Sun, the tomb of one of Hakotep’s most devoted generals. The Aeromantic Infandibulum cores within the sixteen lesser tombs are controlled from and powered by the Sky Pharaoh’s pyramid. It means that the Sky Pharaoh has reawakened. You must make haste to the Khepsutanem before he can raise the others. I will tell you what I know....”


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 5-1: In Defense of Wati prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Five-Pointed Sun
A pyramid emblazoned with a five-pointed sun hovers over the city of Wati. This is the personal tomb of Isatemkhebet, one of Hakotep’s most devoted generals. In life, Isatemkhebet was Hakotep’s aunt and an early supporter in his rise to power. This rise was most fiercely opposed by the Sekpatras, a family of wealthy and influential merchants. Determined to secure her nephew’s fortunes, Isatemkhebet confronted the Sekpatras in their villa only to be captured, petrified and displayed as a statue in their courtyard. Though the young pharaoh eventually rescued her from this torment, the misery and humiliation stayed with her, percolating into an obsession, and her first act after being appointed Hakotep’s general was to round up every last Sekpatra and subject them to the same cruel fate. Unsated, she took the cruelty one step further by chipping away at their stone faces, leaving them jagged and disfigured so that, even if returned to flesh, they would be left scarred and broken. These deformed statues still decorate the halls of her flying tomb.

After visiting this vengeance upon her rivals, Isatemkhebet realized that she had acquired a taste for this peculiar brand of torture, and for many years her greatest amusement was subjecting slaves and enemies of the pharaoh to her pet gorgon, Kor-Ahn-Tuk, a bull-like creature as sadistic as its master. She also enslaved an entire flock of harpies, which she named the “Voices of the Sun,” and uses their weaponized voices to enforce the Sky Pharaoh’s will.

Like the tombs of Hakotep’s other generals, the Five-Pointed Sun is a flying menagerie of monstrous guardians filled with constricting, gas-filled hallways and sudden chutes leading to vertiginous drops. Its dark, cold shadow carries an aura of desecration within which these undead monstrosities thrive. Somewhere within the tomb is the Aeromantic Infandibulum focus, which serves as the pyramid’s invisible connection to the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb. Should the connection be severed, the Five-Pointed Sun should drift aimlessly along the aetheric currents, eventually coming to a rest in the uninhabited desert. This is the best way to protect Wati from harm...but how can the pyramid be reached?


Now read the scenario card….


Ossumental Swarm (read when encountering)
Isatemkhebet once commanded a flock of harpies called the Voices of the Sun. Interred with their leader, the harpies have now degenerated into an endless swarm of flying skeletons wielding old-fashioned khopeshes and oxhide shields. Even without tongues, their beguiling songs fill the sky above the city, tempting its citizens into suicidal or traitorous actions. It is not our main target, but defeating this blight would surely be rewarded by the gods.


Voices of the Spire (read when encountering)
Not every member of the Voices of the Spire supports the Grand Mausoleum’s decision not to give in to the flying pyramid’s demands. They have homes and families in the city and don’t realize the magnitude of the threat the Sky Pharaoh poses should he return to full power. For their own safety, they need to be convinced by word or deed.


Kor-Ahn-Tuk (read after defeating)
During Hakotep’s lifetime, the pharaoh’s enemies grew to fear “the Rubble-Maker,” as Isatemkhebet’s pet gorgon was known. Snorting clouds of petrifying gas from its immense nostrils, the creature resembles an enormous stone bull, but it was enhanced during the mummification process with several extra sets of “horns” curling out from its back and shoulder ridges. As a result, coming into melee range with the creature without being impaled yourself is a tricky prospect. As soon as it turns foes to stone with its petrifying breath, the gorgon delights in trampling and smashing them into rubble. Protected by armored scales even before its death, the mummified creature seems impossible to kill now, and it protects its mistress with furious devotion.


Devoted General (read after defeating)
Although she lacked the raw power of her pet harpies, Isatemkhebet’s voice did command some supernatural authority. Although delivered in barely intelligible Ancient Osiriani, her orders had a way of being followed, and there was nothing the city guard or the Voices of the Spire could do to resist her.

After we had defeated the mummified general, the floating pyramid began to shudder and shake, tilting like an over-buoyant boat in the psychic backlash of having its command so abruptly severed. We had only a few minutes to locate and destroy the Aeromantic Infandibulum focus. When we did, the pyramid calmed and began to drift gently away from the city, accompanied by cheers from the Voices of the Spire. Wati is safe for the time being, but with fifteen generals’ tombs still out there, time is of the essence.


Scenario 5-2: Activating the Sekrepheres prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Slave-Trenches of Hakotep
The Slave-Trenches of Hakotep are one of the seven wonders of Ancient Osirion, but though scholars have puzzled for milennia over the intricate earthworks dedicated to a forgotten ruler, none have uncovered its true purpose--until now. Thanks to the wisdom imparted by Chisisek, the earthworks’ original architect, we now know that the relic is actually the Khepsutanem, a massive weapon design to pluck flying Shory cities from the sky. Though never completed, the Khepsutanem contained enough elemental energy upon Hakotep’s death to launch the Sky Pharaoh’s pyramid into the clouds, and activating it again should call the floating tomb back down to Golarion.

From ground level, the Khepsutanem appears to be a labyrinth of deep trenches lined by hundreds of small obelisks. However, they are intended to be viewed from the air, from which vantage the twisting corridors resolve into a message in Ancient Osiriani hieroglyphs: “Earth shall hold dominion over Sun and Sky.” Each small obelisk binds the soul of a lesser elemental spirit, while the eleven great Sekrepheres bind more powerful creatures of air, earth and fire. Over thousands of years, the power has leached from many of the smaller obelisks, but the ones that are still active thrum with energy.

There are four notable structures within the Slave Trenches. To the north is the Tekramenet, or Lantern Vault, which houses the artifact needed to “light” the Sekrepheres and activate their power. To the west is the Akhumemnet, or Guardian Vault, which holds the Pharaoh’s Key and the souls of his most devoted servants. To the east is the Sekrephrenet, or Monument Vault, which contains the mechanisms needed to actually focus the eleven Sekrepheres upon a target. And finally, to the northwest, rising above the Slave Trenches like a dung beetle’s nest, is the perfectly spherical structure of granite that houses the trenches’ ageless sentinel, the shaitan Tef-Naju.

The first task is to activate the Sekrepheres in the order described by Chisisek. But what’s that screeching…?


Now read the scenario card….


Sekrephere (read after defeating)
Larger than the other obelisks and containing the spirits of greater elementals, each of the Sekrepheres is capped with an animal head associated with a god of the ancient Osirian pantheon. Intimate knowledge of these mostly forgotten deities and their dominion is required to achieve the elemental resonance needed to awaken the Sekrephere. What’s more, millennia of unuse have made the menhirs fickle, prone to falling dormant again without warning. Once all the Sekrepheres are active at once, the sympathetic energies coursing between them should be enough to keep them functional.


Dusk-Taker (read after defeating)
During Hakotep’s early experiments with Shory magic, something went awry, and his pet roc, Kenjutret, became imbued with the power of the Aeromantic Infandibulum. The loyal beast gained the ability to reverse the force of gravity in localized areas--and the intellect to use it. The campfire tales of the Sky Pharaoh plucking naughty children from their homes and flinging them into the endless abyss are rooted in the nightly terrors wrought on the pharaoh’s enemies by the great bird, dubbed Dusk-Taker. Now, the massive eagle dwells in a nest of mammoth bones at the heart of the Khepsutanem, spending its days admiring the work of its master from above and keeping the earthworks free from intruders.


Khai-Utef (read after acquiring)
While activating the Sekrepheres, we stumbled upon the nest of a gypsosphinx, a vulture-headed variety of sphinx known for their oracular proclamations of doom. The sphinx, Khai-Utef, had become obsessed with an enigmatic artifact known as the Amber Chronograph, a wall of amber inscribed with constantly shifting mathematical formulae in Ancient Osiriani hieroglyphics. This is just one of many such “doomsday clocks” to be found in Osirion, all of which appear to count down to some cataclysmic event, but every reckoning of the equations gives a different result, driving scholars to hysteria. Not only the puzzle itself but also its apocalyptic nature attracted the death-obsessed gypsosphinx, in addition to the plentiful open graves of slaves who died in the construction of the Khepsutanem.

A gypsosphinx has the ability to provide warnings of possible deaths, strengthening the listener’s resolve against danger. Of course, the sphinx is just as likely to issue oracular threats, causing the recipient of the prophecy to become hopelessly paralyzed when the fatal moment arrives. While gypsosphinxes are not known for their kindly manner, Khai-Utef has long competed with the mystically enhanced roc Dusk-Taker for this territory and considers himself in our debt for clearing out the competition.


Scenario 5-3: Lanterns of the Bone Fields prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Traps of the Khepsutanem
Two tasks remain now that the Sekrepheres have been awakened. The Khepsutanem houses two powerful artifacts necessary for its function. The Life Lantern must be inserted within its housing in the Lantern Vault in order to turn the awakened Sekrepheres into beacons to call down the Aeromantic Infandibulum focus within the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb. Additionally, the Pharaoh’s Key must be placed within the solar disk in the Sun Disk Plaza. This will complete the sequence and snatch the flying tomb from the sky, additionally disabling the pyramids of Hakotep’s sixteen lieutenants.

Retrieving the artifacts will not be easy, however. As might be expected of the paranoid god-king, Hakotep had many traps and guardians put in place to safeguard the keys to his great weapon. In a chamber known as the Sculptors’ Lair, endless waves of clay constructs called hanshepsus are constructed in the image of the Osirian god Khepri, animated by the trapped souls of loyal slaves. The Akhumen have also created great undead beasts they’ve dubbed kalnakas, bringing life to a fabled slave-devouring monster in order to keep the labor force in check. Imperious statues of Hakotep stand on hovering daises, pronouncing doom upon those who trespass within his Khepsutanem. Earth elementals take form as living sandstorms to rend the flesh of the unworthy. Carvings of Set, Lord of the Dark Desert, animate to impale the pharaoh’s enemies with their wicked speads. Passages covered in glowing green lichen compel passersby to taste of the poisonous weed, causing searing blindness and insanity. The power of the Aeromantic Infandibulum is put to diabolical uses to enact the ages-old punishment of enucleation, plucking out the eyeballs of those who gaze upon the Sky Pharaoh’s sculpted visage with their unworthy eyes. And older, greater dangers lurk beneath the sand....


Now read the scenario card….


Ossumental Swarm (read after defeating)
Hakotep was not known for his benevolent rule. In order to complete the Khepsutanem’s construction before his rapidly approaching death, he worked countless slaves to the death, dumping their bodies into large open graves that now appear as nothing more than a mound of bleached bones. Over untold centuries, the power and life force of the lesser elementals trapped within the Slave Trenches’ obelisks have leached into these bones, creating elementally infused abominations known as ossumentals. Though they lack true intellect, something within the creatures is aware that the Khepsutanem is being turned against its maker, and they have risen in defense of their master.


Sensuret the Tribe-Eater (read after defeating)
Knowledge of the Aeromantic Infandibulum isn’t the only advantage the Shory people held. The keepers of the flying cities once domesticated dinosaurs, using them to subjugate the ground-locked people below. During his long war with the Shory, Hakotep captured one such beast, a spinosaurus called Sensuret the Tribe-Eater. As an insult to his enemies, the Sky Pharaoh had the colossal creature mummified and revived as a loyal guardian, and it now protects his Akhumen in their final resting place. Its mighty talons shake the earth.


Pharaoh’s Key (read after acquiring)
Reverse-engineered from Shory technology, the Pharaoh’s Key acts as an ignition switch for the Khepsutanem, but it is also a powerful artifact in its own right. It commands the souls of elemental creatures, such as those bound to the Sekrepheres, negating their natural resistances and empowering the bearer’s attacks made against them.


Life Lantern (read after acquiring)
The Life Lantern is shaped like a golden ankh inset with a large sapphire. Although its primary function is to ignite the beacons of the Sekrepheres so that they can triangulate on a specific Aeromantic Infandibulum focus, the Life Lantern also has strong necromantic properties. The ankh is the Osirian holy symbol of life, death and rebirth. When held by a pure soul, it emits a healing light that enhances the effects of any curative magic cast within its radiance, and it can even resurrect the fallen. An artifact of rare power, indeed.


Elemental Trenches (read after location is created)
Inserting the Life Lantern into its housing in the Lantern Vault awakened parts of the Khepsutanem that have long lain dormant. Arcs of pure elemental energy shot between the obelisks, gathering in orbs of annihilating plasma above the Sekrepheres. All that remained was to reach the Sun Disk plaza and insert the Pharaoh’s Key. But all of the Slave Trenches’ guardians lay between us and our goal.


Elemental Trenches (read when closing)
As the Pharaoh’s Key sunk into its receptacle in the Sun Disk plaza, the orbs of plasma atop the Sekrepheres burned brighter. The ground shook, and a bestial howl filled the air as the power of a thousand elementals became focused on a single point beyond the horizon. And then, the spectacle of light and sound began to fade. Seconds went by, then minutes, and still the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb did not appear. The Khepsutanem had failed. But why?


Scenario 5-4: Hall of Crawling Fears prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Tragic Tale of Ptenoneph
Ptenoneph was a sorceror in the service of Hakotep. While Chisisek had a hand in the design of the flying tombs and the Khepsutanem, it was ultimately Ptenoneph who was responsible for the Sky Pharaoh’s greatest accomplishment: the theft and reverse-engineering of Shory magic. For a while, this was enough to placate the vain sorceror, but as he grew old and frail, he saw a terrible vision of the future, one in which the Sky Pharaoh and his accomplishments--Ptenoneph’s life work--became forgotten. His immortality no longer assured by his deeds, Ptenoneph obsessively sought other paths to life eternal.

At this time, Hakotep had adopted a practice of preserving memories and bits of personality in cenovaths, another idea stolen from the Shory. Literally meaning “crawling thought,” a cenovath is a centipede-like manifestation of pure knowledge. When a later scholar wishes to access the stored knowledge, he opens his jaw and allows the cenovath to crawl inside, at which point the creature melts away and the insight it contained dissolves into its new host. A lacerated esophagus is a small price to pay for wisdom.

Ptenoneph, jealous of his approaching death, sought to improve upon this practice, and he altered the procedure to store his entire will and conciousness within a cenovath. The alteration failed, however, and the sorceror succeeded only in imprisoning his soul within the jar for all eternity. Hakotep considered this a fitting punishment for the sorceror’s disturbing lack of faith, and the man’s soul is still trapped somewhere within the compound’s Hall of Crawling Thoughts, driven slowly insane by his self-imposed incarceration. If anybody retains enough knowledge of the Khepsutanem’s function to understand why the procedure failed to bring down Hakotep’s pyramid, it would be poor Ptenoneph.


Now read the scenario card….


Sky Pharaoh Guardian (read after defeating)
Within the halls of the Akhumemnet, Hakotep commissioned statues to commemorate his six most trusted advisors and guardians, his Akhumen. Each statue has been given the head of a different animal, for during his reign, Hakotep demanded that his guardians be shown the respect owed to the gods of the Osirian pantheon. However, the statues are more than mere decorations; each has been imprinted with the personality of the Akhumen it represents and given the ability to possess weapons and artifacts in its proximity, in keeping with the guardian’s original area of focus. Duatseti, the priestess of Set, possesses blessed and holy items; Harkhofre, commander of the pharaoh’s guard, targets armors; Iphenkaphri, Hakotep’s favored negotiator, prefers items and jewelry; Nebtuway, the pharaoh’s executioner, favors weapons; Thutnesret, a master wizard, haunts spellbooks and magical foci; and Sifrukhenmen, the Sky Pharaoh’s assassin and spy, haunts the trespasser’s allies and companions, sowing dissent and distrust. Haunted equipment becomes intelligent and loyal to the Sky Pharaoh, turning against its wielder, and is unusable until the statue itself is destroyed.


Memory Cenovath (read after defeating)
The Shory used cenovaths as a means of preserving knowledge, but Hakotep was able to twist the ritual to other uses. In the Hall of Crawling Fears, rows of canopic jars contain the nightmares, manias, and other negative aspects of Hakotep’s followers’ personalities. As it turns out, the Shory avoided this practice for good reason, and over time, this superconcentration of negative psychic energy has manifested as a cloud of bad thoughts hovering over the room. Even the benign cenovaths were corrupted by this negative influence, and they now contain traumas rather than beneficial knowledge.


Canopic Soul (read after defeating)
The trapped soul of Ptenoneph had been driven quite mad by millennia of imprisonment, lashing out with blasts of psychic energy whenever it sensed living souls nearby. We had to subdue it with magical weaponry to prevent the spirit from forcibly inhabiting a new, living body. Using the mechanisms within the Sculptors’ Lair to channel the sorcerer's soul into a clay hanshepsu, we were able to learn many secrets about the Khepsutanem, although the sorcerer was full of vitriol for his master and kept lapsing into raving fits of lunacy and paranoia. We learned that each Aeromantic Infandibulum focus has a unique energy signature that requires a different activation sequence for the Sekrepheres. The sequence given to us by Chisisek was for the Shory city of Kho, which has long since been destroyed. To learn more about the energy signature of the Sky Pharaoh’s pyramid, we will need to interrogate somebody who was present when the tomb was launched: the shaitan Tef-Naju.


Scenario 5-5: Tef-Naju’s Bastion prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


Prisoner of Stone
A shaitan is a genie native to the Elemental Plane of Earth. Eleven-foot beings of living stone, they are obsessed with the accumulation of wealth in the form of precious minerals like gold, silver and gemstones. While binding the souls of countless elementals in the construction of his Khepsutanem, Hakotep knew that he would need a powerful, immortal creature to watch over his weapon, and so he sought out the shaitan magus Tef-Naju. In exchange for a vast trove of riches and knowledge, the greedy shaitan entered into a foolish bargain: he would be bound to the Slave Trenches as their guardian until such time as the weapon could be used, at which point he would receive his payment and be free to go.

What should have taken only a few years became millennia of imprisonment as the Khepsutanem project was abandoned after Hakotep’s death. Shaitans love to make bargains, but they are physically and spiritually bound to their word, and there was nothing Tef-Naju could do to escape his contract.

The genie still dwells within the spherical bastion that rises above the earthworks to the northwest. Only he knows the activation sequence that will focus the Sekrepheres on Hakotep’s pyramid. Unfortunately, the genie is prone to rages and may not give up the information without a fight. And there is another complication. Over the dunes, a familiar shape has appeared: a hovering pyramid emblazoned with a five-pointed sun....


Now read the scenario card….


Warrior Dolls (read after defeating)
Tef-Naju has decorated his bastion with stone minions. They appear to be furniture or abstract sculpture until trespassers come near, at which point they change form into miniature copies of Aiveria, Tef-Naju’s stone maiden companion.


Aiveria (read after defeating)
Aiveria is a stone maiden, a fey creature of elemental earth in the shape of a beautiful human female. She arrived in the Slave Trenches a few centuries ago and has been Tef-Naju’s constant companion ever since. An adept of the ancient Dance of the Seven Veils, she knows how to use her feminine wiles to disarm her opponents...or to soothe her lover’s rage.


Tef-Naju (read when encountering)
The genie Tef-Naju was conflicted. On the one hand, volunteering the information needed would allow the Khepsutanem to be used and his contract to be fulfilled. On the other hand, while that contract held, he was bound by his nature to do battle with all trespassers, especially those who were enemies of the Sky Pharaoh. Readying a spell of chain lightning, he apologetically donned his combat gear. “I must fulfill my bargains,” he said, readying his axe. “It is who I am. Do your best to incapacitate me, and then we will talk.”


Trove of Tef-Naju (read after acquiring)
By calling down Hakotep’s tomb, Tef-Naju has finally fulfilled the terms of his foolish contract. After thousands of years, he can return to his beloved home in the Opaline Vault. As thanks for freeing him from this obligation, and to get back at the mortal who tricked him, Tef-Naju has offered to share one or two trinkets from his great trove. Of course, he would not be a genie if he did not attempt to bargain....


Adventure 5: The Slave-Trenches of Hakotep epilogue (read the following entries after completing the Adventure)


The Sky Pharaoh’s Descent
Arcs of elemental energy shot between the obelisks. Balls of plasma grew above the Sekrepheres. The ground shook. And this time, something happened. A shadow appeared over the horizon, blotting out the sun. A colossal pyramid, over 800 feet long at the base and nearly 600 feet tall, drew ever closer, its limestone sides gleaming, unworn by the sands of time. A great howling erupted from the Slave Trenches, and the souls of its bound elementals flew out from the obelisks and ossumentals, gathering in a vortex around the airborne structure. The divine heads of the Sekrepheres exploded in a shower of rubble. The Khepsutanem had worked.

With an ear-shattering boom, Hakotep’s tomb buried itself in the desert sands beside the ancient earthworks. However, the pyramid of his general, the Five-Pointed Sun, remained airborne. Apparently, the Khepsutanem has only disabled the main pyramid. Although he is bound in place, Hakotep can still pilot the lesser pyramids remotely, using them to reclaim his former kingdom from the Ruby Prince, current pharaoh of Osirion.

The only way to truly end the Sky Pharaoh’s threat is to venture within his pyramid and defeat the mummy lord. Then, placing the Mask of the Forgotten Pharaoh onto his face, we can reunite his divided soul and send it to the afterlife. But who knows what traps and horrors lurk within the pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh?
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for Adventure 6.


Adventure 6: Pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh prologue (read the following entries before starting the Adventure)


Most Beloved Son of Set
The Great Pyramid of Hakotep crashed to the earth, burying its lower levels in the dunes, but the smaller attack pyramid, the Five-Pointed Sun, remained airborne. The Khepsutanem, built by Hakotep to pluck flying Shory cities from the sky, had succeeded in grounding the Aeromantic Infandibulum focus in his own tomb, but the Sky Pharaoh was still capable of channeling energy to the sixteen tombs of his undead generals. These tombs overflow with undead abominations and wield stone-shattering lances of unholy magical light; as long as they remain aloft, the Sky Pharaoh’s threat is far from ended. The only way to truky defeat Hakotep is to return him to his sarcophagus and rest the Mask of the Forgotten Pharaoh upon his shriveled face, reuniting the three parts of his soul and finally sending it on its journey along the River of Souls to Pharasma’s Boneyard.

The limestone faces of Hakotep’s 6,000-year-old tomb remain as polished and smooth as the day it was constructed. Its base is a square 800 feet to an edge, and its lateral faces are equilateral triangles climbing 600 feet into the air. The only features of note are four sets of stone stairs, each leading to a balcony high on one face of the pyramid. Except in the vicinity of these staircases, black metal rods extend from the pyramid’s sides, arcing with electricity, some arcane aspect of the Shory design that has also helped protect the tomb from the ravages of the elements.

As we stared at the monument, a blast of horns sounded, and a small figure emerged from one of the four balconies, clad in a flowing, white tunic. As it drew closer, the figure resolved into that of an attractive female with kohl-rimmed eyes, a golden pectoral necklace, and a shoulder-length, black ceremonial wig. There was something vaguely offputting about the woman, something predatory lurking beneath her perfect skin.

“I am Ain-Mekh,” the woman intoned, “Herald of the Most Illustrious Sky Pharaoh, Lord of the Sands, Vanquisher of the Shory, Hakotep, Most Beloved Son of Set! Rejoice, for your eternal god and pharaoh has returned to cast out the pretenders to the throne and, with His divine strength and wisdom, return His kingdom of Osirion to its former glory!” She turned her attention to us. “You seek an audience with the most glorious Sky Pharaoh, He who wields the Crook and Flail of Kings, He who wears the Khepresh of Refuge, placed upon His immortal throne by Horus, Ra and Wadjet themselves.” It was not a question.

“The Eternal Sky Pharaoh, blessed by the Lord of the Dark Desert, Conquerer of Death Itself, will meet with his unworthy supplicants only if they prove their devotion by traversing the Fourfold Path.” She went on to explain, in her obsequious way, that each of the pyramid’s four entrances opens onto a separate crypt, each representing an element over which Hakotep claimed dominion. Only by enduring the trials of the four elements could we gain entry into the the pharaoh’s inner sanctum at the base of the structure.

“These are the words of the Immortal Sky Pharaoh,” Ain-Mekh concluded. “He awaits your arrival. Farewell...for now.” With those words, the herald retreated up the steps into the foreboding tomb.


Now read the Adventure card....


Scenario 6-1: Crypt of Air prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Crypt of Air
The Crypt of Air extends from the capstone of the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb all the way to the pharaoh’s Inner Sanctum at its base. It was constructed to memorialize Hakotep’s mastery over the sky and to serve as the final resting place for his only heir, Hakmothes, known also as the Ibis Prince. Hakotep’s only offspring by his queen Neferuset, the scholarly Hakmothes died young in a tragic hunting accident. The Crypt of Air also houses an accursed memorial to a man who plotted with the Shory against Hakotep. Remembered only as “Netheshuun,” an Ancient Osiriani word that means “betrayer,” the man was kept alive supernaturally while his body was racked by hideous curses, and now even the sight of him is enough to visit such a scourge upon the beholder. Hakotep had many enemies, and countless such Netheshuuns litter his pyramid.

The majority of this crypt is a deep, vertical sandstone shaft running the length of this pyramid. Other rooms are accessible from balconies situated at intervals along the shaft walls. Buffeting gales howl up and down the shaft, making attempts to navigate it perilous at best, and the electrified atmosphere is guarded by such creatures as giant wasps and thunderbirds. The very base of the shaft is obscured by four elemental storms that prohibit passage. The only way to calm these storms is to disable the four crystalline control pyramids that are used to channel power and issue orders to Hakotep’s fleet of flying attack pyramids.


Now read the scenario card….


Sandstorm (read when triggered)
A blast of wind howled up the shaft, questing through the rooms of the crypt like a pack of baying hounds, clawing at our party and flinging us into walls and pillars. With each collision, the entire crypt groaned as thick cracks spread along the limestone masonry. The intelligence of the storm is alarming. Shendakut, the bitter guardian of this crypt, must have conjured the unnatural wind in a bid to destroy the structure from within and thus escape his obligation.


Shendakut (read when encountering)
The androsphinx Shendakut guards the emerald control pyramid that commands the four attack pyramids hovering high above the capital at Sothis. However, he is an unwilling servant of Hakotep. A cleric of Set, he initially welcomed the Set-worshipping pharaoh’s ascension with great jubilance and became a general in one of the Sky Pharaoh’s armies. After leading a triumphant battle against the Shory, Shendakut was promised a great reward, but to his dismay, the “reward” Hakotep had in mind was serving eternally as a mummified guardian in the Sky Pharaoh’s flying tomb. In a small act of rebellion, the androsphinx offers safe passage to those who can solve his riddle...and the dark embrace of Set to all others.


Thundercloud of Set (read after defeating)
The androsphinx guardian Shendakut commands these lightning elementals, whom he has dubbed the Thunderclouds of Set. The sha-headed Osirian god is the patron of murderers, undead, and ravaging storms, so it is fitting that the tempestuous Crypt of Air be guarded by his devotees.


Scenario 6-2: Crypt of Water prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Crypt of Water
Located near the base of Hakotep’s pyramid, the Crypt of Water consists of a series of wide canals navigated by funerary barges. Although the skeletal ferrymen demand a hefty toll, it is worth paying, since the water itself has the smell of death and saps the life from those who touch it. The various pools and swamps that make up the rooms of this crypt are occupied by mud elementals called Furies of the Drowned Desert, representing lives lost in the Sphinx River’s annual floods, and by the spirits of those who betrayed Hakotep, forced to spend eternity in this mockery of the River of Souls instead of joining Pharasma’s embrace.

In the Hall of the Crocodile Kings, the skulls of countless baby crocodiles litter the water before two crocodile-headed statues labeled “Ptember” and “Ptembas.” These are the names of two brother generals who led a coup against Hakotep but failed, largely because they could not agree on who should replace the Sky Pharaoh on his throne. Queen Neferuset’s adopted sister, Nailah, was also involved in this plot, and she and her handmaidens are imprisoned in another chamber of the crypt, turned to drowned banshees. Ancient Osirian hieroglyphs invite visitors to “crown the rightful Crocodile King,” but placing the khepresh on either statue’s head only causes polymorph gas to pour from their eyes and mouths, transforming the room’s inhabitants into baby crocodiles, ill-equipped to survive the caustic, waist-deep waters. However, there appears to be no way to bypass this trap to gain entry to the rooms beyond.


Now read the scenario card….


Nailah (read when encountering)
The elf Nailah was the adopted sister of Neferuset, queen to Hakotep. After she allied with two of Hakotep’s generals in a failed coup, however, Nailah was put to death along with her handmaidens. Their white linen-wrapped bodies float in shallow pools throughout the Water Crypt, mouths wide in silent screams. In fact, their spirits have been trapped within the crypt as incorporeal banshees, bound to the acidic water that surrounds them. The only way to bring them peace is to neutralize the corrosive waters that constantly gnaw at their preserved flesh, either with an equally strong alchemical compound of the opposing nature or through electrolytic conversion.


Handmaiden of Nailah (read after defeating)
The traitorous Nailah’s handmaidens rose as lesser banshees. Like their mistress, their bodies are suspended in the pools dotting the Crypt of Water. However, their tortured souls are less closely tied to this medium than Nailah’s. While they can also be laid to rest by counteracting the caustic nature of the pools, they can also be banished, like lesser spirits, using divine or arcane magic. Even locating their linen-wrapped corpses and bringing them to the surface should be sufficient to put an end to these malevolent haunts.


Keshenepek (read when encountering)
The sapphire control pyramid commanding the four attack pyramids assaulting the coastal city of Totra is guarded by Keshenepek, a ghawwas div who was once admiral of Hakotep’s fleets. Ghawwas divs are 12-foot-tall creatures that marry the more monstrous aspects of deep-sea fish with a powerful humanoid stature. In their home plane of Abaddon, they dwell in a murky, poisoned sea, and on Golarion, they take a sadistic glee in causing shipwrecks and tormenting sailors. All divs have a weakness birthed of their compulsive nature, and ghawwas are no different: they are tormented by the tolling of bells. Lurking among the dark, writhing sea weeds the line the floor of the Water Crypt’s canals, Keshenepek is largely responsible for its caustic nature, for the ghawwas have the capability to turn any body of water into a boiling pit of acid.


Shrine of the Infinite Void (read after creating)
As we stood before the sapphire control pyramid, the shadows in the corner of the crypt deepened, and the shimmering outline of a door appeared in the wall. It was hazy and indistinct, the normal walls of the crypt still visible behind it, but a cold breeze carried from the immaterial opening, creating wide ripples in the languid water of the crypt. A woman’s voice, echoing strangely, carried on the breeze. “We have witnessed the indescribable beauty of the void and those who dance within its depths. Join us in our chamber, and we will share with you such arcane secrets that trouble the dreams of kings and madmen.” A broad, green tentacle curled across the perfect darkness beyond the indistinct opening.


Queen Neferuset (read after defeating)
Hakotep’s queen towered over us, wearing a red deshret crown and purple leopardskin robes over her wrappings. Her eyes and clawed hands radiated pure evil. “Fools!” she bellowed. “You may have released our sister from her torment, but you have not seen the last of us. Our eyes have beheld the Dreaming Dark and the oblivion between worlds, and we have prepared for this eventuality. Mere death can no longer contain us.” With that, her image dissolved into a cloud of glowing, red smoke, as did the inky chamber in which we stood.


Scenario 6-3: Crypt of Earth prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Crypt of Earth
The topaz control pyramid that commands the four attack pyramids above the city of Ipeq on the Crook River, seat of Osirion’s martial power, is watched over by a handmaiden devil named Eshen Theba. However, she spends most of her time in the Eternal Arena, a temporally displaced gladiatorial stadium in which the spirits of the tomb’s artisans have spent millennia fighting and dying for their overseers’ amusement.

During the pyramid’s construction, the bloodsports served as a punishment for recalcitrant slaves and were presided over by Mentu-Nebef, the head overseer. To secure the devil Eshen Theba as a guardian, Hakotep made the arena a permanent fixture in his tomb, trapping the entire crypt within a temporal loop that can only be escaped by emerging victorious from the fray. Within the time loop, the plaster on the walls is fresh and unfinished, the arena rings with the shouts of bloodthirsty nobles, and the slaves labor endlessly under the whips of their masters.


Now read the scenario card….


Brass Golem (read when encountering)
Among the most fearsome arena combatants were the brass, bull-headed golems. Their wicked, long horns shone in the magically conjured sunlight, and they snorted gouts of superheated air from their flared nostrils. Animated by some sort of infernal engine, their reflective metal hides turned aside fire and arcane energies alike.


Mentu-Nebef (read when encountering)
The overseer Mentu-Nebef sat on a throne overlooking the arena. The seat beside him was empty, but the shimmering outline of a clawed, many-tentacled devil phased in and out of existence. Due to the temporal anomaly, the Eternal Arena existed in many iterations simultaneously, and Eshen Theba flitted between them according to her whims.

“I don’t recognize you,” he yawned. “But no matter. The only way out of the arena is over a mound of your enemies’ bodies.” He touched a golden, oblong cartouche worn around his throat, and several monstrous combatants blinked into existence. “Fight, slaves! If you are victorious, you will have the pleasure of dying by my hand,” he concluded, casually gesturing to the poison-tipped khopesh strapped to his thigh.


Cartouche of Protection (read after acquiring)
This golden, winged cartouche was worn by the overseer Mentu-Nebef and used to summon monstrous combatants within the Eternal Arena. Outside of the temporal loop, its application is restricted to magically relocating the wearer a short distance. Beyond this, the cartouche functions as a more mundane warding artifact, providing the wearer a small degree of protection against dangers of all kinds. There is, however, a hidden power of the cartouche: by inscribing the cartouche with the true name of a foe, the wearer temporarily becomes impervious to all hostile actions by that foe.


Eshen Theba (read after defeating)
After sating her lust for pain and suffering by defeating waves of arena combatants, we were invited to meet with the “true” Eshen Theba. The handmaiden devil, guardian of the Earth Crypt’s control pyramid, had disguised herself as a priestess of Osiris, Lord of the Living, imprisoned and tortured at the hands of the Set-worshipping Sky Pharaoh. She covered herself with the illusion of welts and weeping pustules and offered to treat our injuries if we promised to undo the pharaoh’s unnatural resurrection. Of course, this was only an excuse to get us within range of her raking, pestilent claws and tentacular grasp.


Scenario 6-4: Crypt of Fire prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Crypt of Fire
The central level of Hakotep’s pyramid is dominated by an enormous forge. The heat within the Fire Crypt is insufferable, and movement is precarious, as the floors if several workshops have been entirely subsumed by the rivers of lava that belch forth constantly from the kilns and furnaces. Some rooms within the crypt burn with the heat of a thousand suns, thoroughly immolating all intruders.

Somewhere within this infernal madness is the ruby control pyramid that commands Hakotep’s forces targeting the sister cities of An, Tephu and Wati at the confluence of the Crook and Asp rivers. This is also the key to calming the firestorm sealing off the pharaoh’s Inner Sanctum. However, it is protected by one of Hakotep’s most trusted assassins, a nosferatu named Inhetef. His bloodlust has gone unsated for thousands of years; the Sky Pharaoh’s Fang is not likely to provide a warm welcome.


Now read the scenario card….


Conflagration (read when triggered)
A massive black furnace in the belly of the Fire Crypt keeps the air heated to a degree that is only steps away from deadly. Thick iron pipes feed the flaming-hot air to the kilns and crucibles, stoked by boilers in the shape of salamanders and efreeti. The valves and cranks controlling these mechanisms sear the flesh, but turning them should cool the rooms to a more liveable temperature.


Mockery of Ra (read when encountering)
What appeared to be a statue of a hungry baby bird suddenly came to life, a shriek of steam escaping from its wide beak. These constructs were built to mock the falcon-headed Ra, Osirian god of sun and sky, and to protect the crypt from intruders. Anybody who comes within their grasp is scooped up and deposited in their spacious, iron bellies, at which point the mockeries of Ra plop down in a pool of lava, cooking their captive prey like an oven.


Sky Pharaoh’s Fang (read when encountering)
Nosferatus exhibit a crude form of vampirism and are easily identifiable as wretched, rat-fanged creatures of impossibly advanced age. Inhetef’s accursed bloodlust made him a willing and effective assassin in the service of Hakotep, earning him the epithet “the Sky Pharaoh’s Fang.” He worships Sekhmet, the lion-headed Osirian goddess of fire and slaughter, and has imbued his weaponry with her annihilating flames.


Scenario 6-5: The Sky Pharaoh’s Sanctum prologue (read before starting the Scenario)


The Inner Sanctum
Now that the four elemental storms at the base of the windswept shaft have been calmed, the pharaoh’s Inner Sanctum is now accessible. Here, the pharaoh resides with his most sycophantic followers and his undead queen, Neferuset. The Fourfold Path turned out to be quite the gauntlet, but even so, descending into the Sky Pharaoh’s lair in possession of his only weakness somehow feels like walking into a trap.

Here, the Aeromantic Infandibulum engines still grind and whirr, maintained by a Shory engineer named Sehela whose spirit Hakotep has imprisoned within his tomb. The ridiculously redundant layers of traps, curses and mummified guardians protecting the Sky Pharaoh’s personal crypt and that of his queen, Neferuset, speak eloquently of the royal’s narcissism and paranoia. However, his gilded sarcophagus and hers, composed of some green, meteoric starstone, are already empty. Traditionally, pharaohs’ pyramids contain a replica throne room so that Anubis, judge of souls, will be aware of the deceased’s stature, and this is where Hakotep now resides, communicating with his generals and his queen via an enchanted clay tablet called a scrivener’s wall. Neferuset is elsewhere, communicating with dark things from between the web of stars.

There are smaller crypts to the few relatives that did not plot against Hakotep and to Tabes, the dwarven jester favored by the pharaoh. Hakotep had his most trusted allies interred alongside him, and many have already been awakened in undeath thanks to the actions of his queen, Neferuset, a priestess of Set. But fewer than half of Hakotep’s Akhumen survived the ritual, and dark, fresh stains on the altar in the crypt’s Temple of Set suggest that the queen was unable to resist offering their souls to the hungry, eldritch beings she reveres.


The Life and Death of Hakotep I
Due to the successful erasure campaign carried out by Djederet II following the Sacrosanct Order of the Blue Feather’s blasphemous theft of the pharaoh’s ib and ka, contained in his heart and funeral mask, the hieroglyphs and murals decorating this crypt represent the most complete extant history of Hakotep I, the Sky Pharaoh. Of course, the architects of his tomb were so obsequious or terrified of the pharaoh that the veracity of these details can’t be taken for granted. Nevertheless, the various catalogues of his deeds, genealogies and land-holdings represent a significant find for students of ancient Osirian history.

Hakotep ascended to the throne at a young age following the unexpected death of his father, Djederet I, in -1653 AR. So young was he, in fact, that he was popularly known as “the boy pharaoh” for much of his early reign. During those years, Osirion experienced a period of unusual prosperity, so the people quickly came to accept their new ruler despite his devotion to the dark god Set. All of that changed, however, after his marriage to Neferuset, a priestess of Set and an oracle of the Dark Tapestry, unfathomable paradeities from the void between stars. Many say that she bewitched him with whispered secrets beyond mortal ken. Despite the protests of his advisors, and although she bore him only a single heir, who died before he reached maturity, Hakotep vowed to take no other wives, and he placed the words of his queen above those of his entire court.

After his marriage, Hakotep’s style of rule changed. He became more brutal toward his own subjects, and goaded on by Neferuset’s whispered promises, he embarked on a long and bloody campaign of military expansion. Eventually, Osirion’s borders met those of the flying Shory to the south, and Hakotep’s obsession with conquering this magically and technologically superior civilization nearly ruined his kingdom. Those who objected to the war were silenced by Hakotep’s many assassins, and all lived in terror of the self-dubbed Sky Pharaoh and his unhinged queen.

Eventually, Hakotep’s obsession with the Shory led to the capture of several of their engineers and the construction of the Khepsutanem, an unprecedented weapon designed to pluck Shory cities from the sky. Before the weapon could be used, however, Hakotep was struck by the wasting illness that had been the death of many of Osirion’s pharaohs, and his attentions shifted to the construction of this lavish, flying tomb. After Hakotep’s death, his queen drank poison, to the immense relief of all, and having no heirs, he was succeeded by a nephew, Djederet II.


Now read the scenario card….


Forgotten Pharaoh Cultist (read when encountering)
Hakotep’s Akhumen, his personal retinue of guards, advisors and assassins, were interred alongside their pharaoh, and many of them have been resurrected as intelligent mummies using an ancient ritual of Set. Slavishly devoted to their god-king, they will lay down their lives once more on his behalf.


Ain-Mekh (read when encountering)
Ain-Mekh, the Herald of Hakotep, appeared much as she had when she had greeted us outside of the pyramid: a small Osirian woman with flawless skin, kohl-rimmed eyes, and a black ceremonial wig. Except now her face and much of her white tunic were stained with blood and other viscera. “I knew that she would meet again,” the herald said with a wry smile. “Have you come to pay your respects to the Most Illustrious Sky Pharaoh?” Noticing our gaze, she looked down, apparently noticing her blood-stained tunic for the first time. “Oh, I’ve gone and soiled my costume. I suppose it’s time to change.” So saying, she reached down and tore both tunic and skin from her frame in a single motion, coating the walls with a wide spray of blood. She stretched her limbs, now nothing more than naked muscle and bone, revealing herself to be much larger than she had previously appeared. Her entire form was hideous to behold, and it was all we could do to keep from retching. “Your skins will do nicely,” the ecorche said, reaching toward us with long, rending claws.


Queen Neferuset (read when encountering)
Raised in a temple of Set, Neferuset was no stranger to dark forces. But after she inherited her grandmother’s gift as an oracle of the Dark Tapestry, the endless void between stars and the malignant, god-like beings who dwell in that frozen nothing, her parents began to worry for her future. They needn’t have; Neferuset’s prophecies, delivered in tongues unknown to even the most learned of scholars, soon drew the attention of a young prince of the royal family. Singling him out in the crowd, she whispered something in his ear, and mere years later, the two were wed: the Set priestess Neferuset and Hakotep, now pharaoh of Osirion. Many of Hakotep’s actions as pharaoh were initiated by his queen’s suggestion, including the war with the Shory and the construction of the Khepsutanem. Meanwhile, she sought new avenues to grow her own power, kidnapping children from Osirion’s cradles and sacrificing them in rituals recorded only in a tome bound in dwarf skin, the Secrets of the Dreaming Dark.

“You have spirit,” she said, curling a long-nailed finger while her wicked eyes flashed red. “But spirit can be broken. You oppose us now, but in death, you can be made to obey.”


Khepresh of Refuge (read after acquiring)
A two-meter-tall statue of the Sky Pharaoh as he appeared in life decorates the throne room of his tomb. Mostly composed of rich marble, the statue held a golden crook and flail in its crossed arms and wore a blue leather khepresh, or war crown, on its head. This turned out to be the Sky Pharaoh’s own crown, known as the Khepresh of Refuge. Enchanted against fire and cold, the khepresh can also enhance the reflexes of its wearer, allowing one to deftly avoid otherwise lethal attacks.


The Sky Pharaoh (read when encountering)
Desiccated by the process of mummification, Hakotep’s noble face was still a perfect match for the Mask of the Forgotten Pharaoh. He towered above his throne, clasping a golden crook and flail in his arms, eyes glinting gold. “Ah, the fools who deprive us of our ka,” the pharaoh intoned, his voice somehow both sneering and disinterested, as though addressing cockroaches. “Abase yourselves before your god.”

Try as we might, we could not resist the tone of command in his voice, and we found ourselves crawling on our bellies toward him. “Why try to oppose our righteous rule?” he wondered aloud. “Surely it is clear to you that the gods have seen fit to return us to our throne that we might bring Osirion back to her former glory.

“We have slumbered for many years, yet when that woman awoke our ib, our eyes were opened. How small and weak our kingdom has become! In our day, all lands between the two oceans paid tribute to their god-king. Now, the people worship foreign gods, and that pretender of a pharaoh allows foreigners to defile our tombs. It is clear that the so-called Forthbringer Dynasty is of impure blood. They consort with genies and elementals, lesser beings whose power we once enchained. They bring shame and ruin to our ancestors.

“No more! Even now, our generals besiege the great cities of Osirion. We will reclaim our throne, and by blood and sweat, we will reclaim the lands that Osirion has lost. All that we require is the mask so that our sundered soul can be united and we can leave the confines of this tomb-prison. Bring it forth!” The head of his crook glowed white, and forked lightning jumped between us, shocking us free of his glamour.


Adventure 6: Pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh epilogue (read the following entries after completing the Adventure)


Fall of the Sky Pharaoh
The once-great Sky Pharaoh fell. His khepresh toppled from his head. The Crook and Flail of Kings clattered to the floor. His desiccated throat release a final death rattle and went silent.

But our work was not finished. With his soul sundered, the Sky Pharaoh would rise again. To end his threat for good, we would need to reunite the three parts of his soul and send them to their final judgment in Pharasma’s boneyard. We lifted the mummified royal, surprisingly light in death, and carried him back to his gilt sarcophagus, where the cushions still retained his outline. Then we placed the mask upon his face.

There was a moment’s silence, then green flames erupted from the mask, spreading to cover the pharaoh’s mummified form. His dry lips opened in a howl of silent protest, and sand-colored smoke began to pour from his mouth, coalescing into a stern but regal figure: Hakotep as he had appeared in life. A fell wind arose, emanating from the sarcophagus itself, buffeting the pharaoh’s spirit until it was but a hazy outline of a man. His ghostly eyes met ours, seething with hatred, before the wind picked up in force, tearing the imperious form asunder, carrying the pharaoh’s soul in scraps and pieces to the eternal reward awaiting it. As soon as no trace of the figure remained, the mysterious wind fell silent, and the pall of evil that had enveloped the crypt was lifted.

The Sky Pharaoh’s Tomb still represented an unprecedented historical find, and there were rooms we had not yet explored. In one, a tomb for Neferuset’s grandmother Neferisis, we found a disturbing sight. We opened a sarcophagus to discover an unsettling green fungus had taken root within, sprouting from a shattered canopic jar. Although the outline was vague and indistinct, the fungus’ form was unmistakably human, with arms, legs and a partially developed face that was eerily reminiscent of Neferuset’s. We destroyed it with fire, along with her altar to the elder things of the Dark Tapestry.

In our journey through the four elemental crypts, we had temporarily disabled the crystalline control pyramids commanding Hakotep’s flying fleet, but the Shory engineer Sehela showed us how to ground the generals’ pyramids safely and permanently. The generals themselves will still need to be dealt with, but the Ruby Prince has already dispatched troops to the cities under siege. The size and mobility of Osirion’s standing army would be suspicious in any other time, but for now, the people are grateful for the help.


Adventure Path: Mummy’s Mask epilogue (read the following entries after completing the Adventure Path)


A Royal Welcome
After departing the Sky Pharaoh’s grounded tomb, we followed the Crook River route back to Wati, where a sizeable welcome party awaited us. News of the “Conquerors of the Mummy Pharaoh” had spread quickly, and we were harangued by historians and Osirionologists hungry for details of the long-lost pyramid, bards wishing to immortalize our exploits in song, and of course merchants wishing to barter for relics of Osirion’s First Age. We headed straight for the Tooth and Hookah, where we found meals, drink and lodging on the house...and a message from the Ruby Prince himself requesting the honor of our presence in Sothis, capital of Osirion.

No matter how famous you are, it does not do to disappoint royalty, so after a few days’ recuperation, we boarded a barge north to the Sphinx River Delta. Sothis, constructed under the glittering dome of a monstrous beetle, is both far older and far wealthier than any of the cities inland, but there was no time to gawk at the Necropolis of the Faithful, Azghaad’s Spire, or Malhitu Bazaar. We were ushered quickly to the Palace of the Forthbringer, where the pharaoh awaited.

The Ruby Prince was surprisingly young, appearing little more than a boy, despite having ruled Osirion for over three decades. He was surrounded by his Risen Guard and some members of his court; from one corner of the room, Her Excellency Muminofrah winked lasciviously, sprawled on a divan. The Ruby Prince spoke a few words to a man on his left, who repeated them as though issuing a proclamation, never meeting our eyes, his voice reverberating off of the marble walls.

“Osirion owes you a great debt. For uncovering the intentions of the Sky Pharaoh and putting an end to his threat, the Ruby Prince welcomes you to remain in Sothis for as long as you would like, where you will be treated as a member of his own court. Should you desire financial compensation, know that no request will be denied you. And, as the rightful discoverers of the Sky Pharaoh’s tomb and the other sixteen flying pyramids, you will be granted right of first refusal to explore each of them as you see fit...or, should you choose to cede exploratory right to the Osirian government, one-tenth ownership of any treasures recovered from within.

“All these things shall be yours by the favor of the Ruby Prince. The Ruby Prince only requires that, should Osirion or one of her allies once again fall into danger, you be ready to once again take up arms in her defense. So it is proclaimed, and so it shall be.” We were ushered from the pharaoh’s sight as quickly as we had entered, without a word to say on the matter.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
This space reserved for the Glossary.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
I'm taking requests for Glossary entries. Which cards from Adventures B and 1 would you like to read more about?
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
If anybody is active on the Paizo community forums and would like to share this text, you have my blessing. I would love to have a wider audience for this. Just please attribute the text to Byron Campbell a.k.a. "kittenhoarder" on BoardGameGeek.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
kittenhoarder wrote:
I'm taking requests for Glossary entries. Which cards from Adventures B and 1 would you like to read more about?


i would like to know more about several allies: ubashki, mahga threefingers, miau pakhet, nefti the bard, dredge, terhk fourwinds, meehr zet, marianix karn, aunty, &c. mainly, every unique ally.

thanks!
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Well done !

I stopped playing this set a bit earlier in order to wait for the story guide development and I see that I can now continue with the whole B scenario and adventure 1.

Well done, keep the good work going !

- K.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
I sent

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a few questions about the forum posts. I should have a text-only draft PDF available in a day or two.

I'll post something up on paizo.com once there's something available to download.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
I went ahead and resolved the questions I could answer on my own. I submitted Draft 1 for admin approval. There's a todo (to do) list of outstanding items, indicating issues I'm aware of that still need to be done besides the obvious work item of the remaining Adventure Decks. Barring any hideous errors, major oversights, or a major rewrite by Kittenhoarder, I will add corrections to the next version of the draft guide - which would most likely happen when Kittenhoarder completes Adventure Deck 2.

One change users should be aware of is this version of the Adventure Guide encourages players to read the Adventure Path and Scenario card flavor text; previous versions of the Adventure Guide told players to skip those cards.

I will make an entry on Paizo.com's Community Use Registry and create a forum post about the guide as soon as I have a file entry here on BGG to link to.

Don't forget to thumbsup and Byron's posts on this thread. It's what keeps him motivated to prioritize writing the guide in between his freelance gigs.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
calpurnio1973 wrote:
kittenhoarder wrote:
I'm taking requests for Glossary entries. Which cards from Adventures B and 1 would you like to read more about?


i would like to know more about several allies: ubashki, mahga threefingers, miau pakhet, nefti the bard, dredge, terhk fourwinds, meehr zet, marianix karn, aunty, &c. mainly, every unique ally.

thanks!


I know most of these. Don't know much about Miau Pakhet. That is the promo character, right? I haven't seen her in the adventure modules.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
kittenhoarder wrote:

I know most of these. Don't know much about Miau Pakhet. That is the promo character, right? I haven't seen her in the adventure modules.


yes. she has cat head. i'm only know the pathfinder universe by the acg games, so, a lot of background is hide for me. may be she belongs to a race?

the card of miau pakhet is here:

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/210675/pathfinder-advent...

obviously, all your data about pathfinder stuff is a great addition to me.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Excellent suggestions Calpurnio.

I use PathfinderWiki sometimes when working on the guides if that helps:

http://www.pathfinderwiki.com

It's what motivated me to pull together the Meet the Heroes guide and the Golarion Deities (Blessings) guide because I was frequently consulting it for information about the heroes and deities.

The unnamed allies and monsters are generally easy to consult in the wiki, although it's much harder if you aren't familiar with Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, or fantasy computer games (solo or Massive Multiplayer Games.)

With some familiarity, you might just need to look up minor things like the difference between a witch, wizard, and sorcerer because the differences are subtle if you aren't already versed in it. You also might know some of the monster archetypes, although their specific history varies depending on the campaign setting - an orc or drow elf in D&D's Forgotten Realms has a different history than the same monsters in Pathfinder's Golarion setting. I've generally found with the monsters it's best to pick it up as I go along. The information isn't vital for the card game. If there's something distinct that affects the story, Kittenhoarder and I try to call it out in the guides.

Lore knowledge - city names, nation states, history, how specific fantasy races like elves or halflings fit in the Pathfinder universe - only comes with exposure. Clicking hyperlinks in the PathfinderWiki entries, reading official Paizo RPG materials, or reading a few Pathfinder Tales novels (or the web fiction on Paizo's web site) will get you up to speed pretty quickly.

Some quick take-aways I got in an afternoon of reading when working on the Rise of the Runelords Guide:

1.) Pathfinder takes place on the world of Golarion.
2.) Halflings are often enslaved (probably because of their small size)
3.) Forgotten Realms was often Good vs. Chaotic Evil (demons) while Pathfinder seems to be Good vs. Lawful Evil (the devil-worshipping nation of Cheliax).
4.) There's a nation of atheists in Golarion which I found very interesting for a setting where deities and divine miracles are part of every day life. The atheists don't deny the gods exist, but choose not to worship them or request their aid.
5.) There some mapping between cultures on Earth (Europe, India, Africa, Far East, etc) and the Pathfinder setting. Once you learn the mapping, there's a lot of implicit information you can derive. For example, Osirion refers to Ancient Egypt while Qadira has more of an Arabic culture. You might not know specific information about those places in Golarion, but knowledge about Earth's culture's provides a reasonable frame of reference.

Information about specific named allies is generally only included in the modules the card game is based on or the short entries on PathfinderWiki.com. It's the whole reason many of the previous versions of the Adventure Guides had a long-winded story format, to introduce important NPCs and set the action for each of the scenarios so people didn't need to purchase and read the modules to enjoy the card game.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
thanks, Neil. very interesting things in your comment.

i wish the pathfinder tales were translated to spanish (my mother tongue) by devir publisher, but i'm afraid that will not occur.
 
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
The guide is live and, as promised, I made the required Community Use Registry entry and posted about the guide's availability on Paizo.com
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Miau Pakhet is a Catfolk character custom created by the MM ACG team specifically for the ACG, evoking the Gambling aspect of Bastet and because certain members of the team really love cats and being fun and silly.

You won't find her in any hidden area of Pathfinder Tales or wiki.

--

Glad to see the awesome work going into this endeavor. Thanks to Byron and Neil for everything they do and have done to support the game!
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
For Neil and anyone following along in this thread: I made a small but important edit to the Senenmerek text. I won't repeat it here to avoid spoilers, but if you are already past 1-5, you might want to reread that bit as it now sets up Adventure 2 a little more.

Speaking of Adventure 2, expect to see it this week!
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
And in case there is any confusion, there are glossary entries coming for the NPC's mentioned earlier in the thread. I am trying to get the main adventure guide done first because I know some players are already ahead in the campaign. Briefly:

Mahga Threefingers is a former adventurer and the unofficial leader of Wati's Bargetown district.

Dredge is a genderless halfling fixer/fence in Bargetown.

"Aunty" Anjet Jehuti is the proprietor of Insula Mater, a home for expectant mothers in Wati.

Tehrk Fourwinds is the proprietor of Tehrk's Fine Expeditions, Wati's adventurer's guild and provision shop.

An Ubashki is an undead, mummified housecat.

The others are not covered in Adventure Module 1 or 2.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
I had forgotten my login info, but I rediscovered it in order to offer my congratulations on a great guide! Looking forward to Adventure 2, thanks for the hard work!
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Okay, I've copied down Scenario 1-5 and I'll review the whole entry for any changes. You should see them in the next file upload, which will most likely happen when Adventure Deck 2 is completed.
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Re: Mummy's Mask Adventure Guide draft thread for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
In addition to the adventures (including MM0 Player's Guide), our primary sources for allies in Mummy's Mask came from Osirion Legacy of the Pharaohs then from some PFS scenarios (many Aspis agents).
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