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11/09/2018 11:01 pm  #21


Re: The Dark Treasury

Lemurian Fragments

Not to be confused with the Lemurian Remnants, an island chain along the edge of the world, the Lemurian Fragments are somewhat akin to the aforementioned Pnakotic Manuscripts.  Fashioned of some long lost ancient metal, these curious shards were allegedly graven by the snake-man in the elder days.  This race, also long lost to time and space, reputedly dwelt in Lemuria in aeons past, hence their moniker.  The contents of the fragments are not fully known for obvious reasons, but certain other texts, as well as some debased cults, provide hints as to what might be found in the fragments.

Though also associated with other texts in the Dark Treasury, it is believed that the so-called Scarlet Verses were first scribed in the Lemurian Fragments.  It is unclear if these verses were so named for their color or their content, but it was likely both.  The fragments also contain the Libram of Pain, a guide to torture.  Certain diabolic cults would pay a handsome price to find even this work on its own.  Again like the Pnakotic Manuscripts, the fragments contain much history of the world before the rise of humanity.  In this case it is primarily a history of the elder days from the perspective of the snake men.  In some cases this correlates or contradicts statements in the manuscripts pertaining to the Great Race of Yith.

The fragments are written in the tongue of the snake men.  Those who worship Set or another deity associated with reptiles have a base chance equal to twice their intelligence score to understand the language of the fragments.  In their complete form they are small metal plates that fit into a metal box.  The box can only be opened by uttering the phrase "I slither by the grace of Yig" under candlelight.  Finally, the fragments contain spells related to reptile summoning and control, including over giant specimens.  It is believed that the Starry Wisdom Sect, based in Valakant, currently has possession of the most complete edition of the fragments.  They are highly sought after by the Union of the Snake, as might be expected.

Last edited by Spider of Leng (11/09/2018 11:03 pm)


"Behind closed eyes,realize your sight."--Blue Oyster Cult
 

11/09/2018 11:18 pm  #22


Re: The Dark Treasury

At last, the final piece of the Dark Treasury, the Book of Keeping....

At one point there were four Books of Keeping, but it is believed that only one complete copy remains.  The work is a comprehensive and ever changing manual of lore on the denizens of the Infernus.  It contains all manner of spells pertaining to summoning and control of infernal beings, including quite a few unique spells concerning daemons.  But most significantly, it contains a large number of true names of powerful, unique fiends including dukes and lords of Hell and demon princes.  The originals were compiled by a coven of night hags who used the knowledge therein to barter for souls and larvae.  Over the centuries they were stolen and scattered.  At times one or more volumes would briefly re-surface, only to disappear once it attracted too much attention.  At these times it is believed that other works were incorporated into the Books of Keeping, one such text being the infamous Demonicum of Iggwilv.  At least one of these copies was destroyed by a band of mortal heroes led by a paladin named Merlon, but the means of its destruction is not recorded.

The sole remaining copy is bound in the leathery skin of nycadaemon.  Its cover is decorated with askeletal hand, that appears to have been from a human.  This copy of the book once belonged to the mighty lich Vecna.  His followers kept it for some time after the lich's disappearance but its present whereabouts is unclear.  One persistent rumor puts it in the mysterious floating dungeon of Highfell. 

As indicated above, The Book of Keeping contains detailed information on the Infernus and its denizens, including sections on geography, personalities, factions, and strengths and weaknesses of powerful personages.  It is most accurate in its coverage of daemons.  In game terms this means that anyone reading the book will have the basic information on such entities covered in the standard rulebooks.  As might be expected, virtually any fiend would kill to get the information in this book.  So would most night hags.  The language of the Book of Keeping is High Infernal.  It is neutral evil in alignment and any mortal that reads the book must make a wisdom check each month or be afflicted with a randomly determined form of insanity.  Evil readers gain 1 level of experience and +5 to any proficiency or skill checks related to Infernal Lore.

 


"Behind closed eyes,realize your sight."--Blue Oyster Cult
     Thread Starter
 

12/11/2018 7:18 pm  #23


Re: The Dark Treasury

*standing ovation*
¡BRAVO!


...before fatidic silver pools on a auspicious night stood a Hyperborean Xathoqquan priestess; stripping naked like a beast crawling in on all fours in supplication...
 

12/15/2018 9:12 pm  #24


Re: The Dark Treasury

Spider of Leng wrote:

As promised, I'm going to start uploading my write-ups on the Dark Treasury.  Feel free to crib/steal whatever you'd like. 

Hi Spider!  I'm late to the game, but found your work very inspiring -- i.e. I might just crib a thing or two! http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/cute.png
  And in the interest of open discussion, I hope you don't mind if I share a few thoughts of my own.

Spider of Leng wrote:

The Seven Cryptic Scrolls of Shan 

I noticed your change to the traditional spelling of "Hsan" to "Shan" and wondered, is there any connection to that other Shan, aka the insects from Shaggai?  Many works of art and writing could actually be the product of Shan infesting the human authors, particuarly works that celebrate chaos, depravity, suffering, Azathoth, or the pursuit of extreme sensation/hedonism.  But the Seven Cryptical Scrolls seem to be more on the systematic and comprehensive end of the scale, so perhaps they don't fall into this category. 

I do enjoy your correlation between the men of Leng and Tibetan mystics, who by some accounts have a powerful connection (or opposition) to Mythos forces. 

 

12/16/2018 6:08 pm  #25


Re: The Dark Treasury

The reason for my spelling of Shan is linguistic accuracy.  I speak Chinese and Japanese and Hsan is not an accepted Romanization.  In the old Wade-Giles system of Romanizing Chinese, you might see hsing, or hsin, or something like that, which would be Xing, Xin, etc. in pinyin.  But there is no hsan/xan.  So I went with Shan, which is correct.  I know it shouldn't matter in a fantasy setting, but it irked me.

As for Leng (冷), I modeled my own empire after an amalgamation of Imperial China and Tibet, with an emperor advised by the lamas of several monasteries.  But the state's name is derived from the elder days and the Leng of the Cthulhu Mythos.  So when I bolted Hyperborea onto my homebrew world as the north pole region, I allowed for gates from the "Asian" Leng to the Hyperborean Leng Plateau.  These are in the ruined city of Sarkomand.

Incidentally, the "Asian" lands in my campaign are west, rather than east, of the pseudo-European/demi-human realms.  But that was largely because I mapped the latter first and just decided it fit my geography better because I wanted Leng to be surrounded by huge mountain ranges.


"Behind closed eyes,realize your sight."--Blue Oyster Cult
     Thread Starter
 

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