The Lady Sleeps

James's incoherant rantings, part 1: Into the eyes of madness

Tallarn says: All this stuff below is brilliant. I’m not sure what the next step is, but I certainly want to follow up on this and see if we can sell the idea to a publishing company.

I'll give you the notes I've made for myself. They're very rough and inconsistent at this stage, I hope you can make some sense of it!

Hook:
A mysterious tower has appeared atop a hill outside of town, the site of a burnt out ruin. The tower is wreathed in mist, and ghostly lights can be seen in the upper windows. Furthermore, a ghostly figure on horseback has been seen riding around the church on some nights. The adventurers have to discover how these events are linked, and what they have to do with a terrible night twenty years past. What happened to Lady Ashgate the night her husband returned from war? What happened to Sir Trios, the Regent, that same night?

Adventure synopsis:

The PCs are drawn into a mystery in the sleepy hamlet of Ashgate when, on the night of the annual Reaping Fair, a ghostly rider gallops through the crowd, heading for the church. He circles the churchyard, crying out the name "Dahlia!", then makes to ride through the gate. The apparition disappears into smoke as it passes the gate. The next day the town is rife with theories as to the nature of the apparition. The Lord of Ashgate hires the PCs to investigate.


He explains that the tower which has appeared is on the site of the property of the treacherous Sir Trios, Lord Ashgate's previous Regent. He explains that twenty years past when Lord Ashgate went to war, he left Sir Trios in command. Lord Ashgate returned a year later, and found evidence of Sir Trios plotting to usurp him. He had the man killed and his residence burned to the ground. At the same time his wife, Dalhia Ashgate, was taken ill and quickly died.

The PCs discover the truth of the business by talking with several locals; the local priest, a previous serving lady of Lady Ashgate, and the "witch in the woods", as well as the Crown Prince Tarram. They are also the target of an assassination attempt. In time the following becomes apparent:
The Regent, Sir Trios, and Lady Dalhia Ashgate were involved in an affair that resulted in the birth of Prince Tarram. When Lord Ashgate returned from war to find his Lady wife pregant, he had Sir Trios murdered and his grounds razed before returning to his senses. Lady Ashgate became inconsolable and afraid of her husband, though he would never harm her. He employed a witch to erase his wife's memory of Sir Trios, but something went wrong and Lady Dalhia lost all memory. The grieving Lord Ashgate had her placed in the care of the local church, and had it advertised that she had died of poison adminstered by his treacherous regent, Sir Trios.

Now, Lord Ashgate wants the haunting stopped, no questions asked. The young lord Tarram wants the issue left alone, lest his illegitimate birth (which he has discovered for himself) be brought to the attention of the public. Perhaps he sends assassins after the PCs?

The key to the mystery is Lady Dalhia, who is now an acolyte of the local church going by the name of Sasha. Her memories must be unlocked with the aid of the "witch in the woods", an elven warlock, whose services must be paid for in blood…

A tale of love, betrayal, revenge, murder and black magic…
When ghost sightings stir the memories and imaginations of the people of Ashgate, adventurers are called in to investigate the mysterious, ghostly tower that has appeared upon the moor. They must discover the truth of an affair twenty years dead, and a falling out between two brave knights before they themselves are murdered!

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