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The Horn of Nimraug
Part I - Fire and Ice

The adventure

Copyright ©1999 Craig Pay
Edited for The Guild Companion by Joe Mandala, August 2000

First Impressions (Day 1)

As the PCs approach the village they see figures dashing into their houses and then as they move closer four figures re-emerge grasping strange barbed spears in a defensive manner. One of them, the only woman in the group, steps forward. As well as the ornate bone spear in her right hand she holds in her left hand a long, straight, thin white horn, unlike any that any of the PCs will have ever seen before. She bows slightly, and then speaks to the PCs in accented Westron (level 3).
"Why are you here Big Southern Men? Our mothers have taught us that your kind have always brought trouble."

The others mumble their approval.

Alaric eventually persuades the woman that he and the PCs mean no harm. She then invites everyone into a nearby snow-house, whilst the other three Lossoth wait outside.

Inside the snow-house it is surprisingly warm and the PCs may be a little worried at the burning fire in the center of a house made from snow! The woman sits down on a wooden platform on the floor, and then beckons Alaric and the PCs to sit on other platforms around the edge of the snow-house.
"I am Lumijalat, that means Snow-foot from your mouth. This place is Mulkan Kaupunki and I am their viisas."

Alaric introduces himself and beckons for each of the PCs to do likewise. He then launches straight into his trade negotiations, which start badly with Lumijalat saying things like "We need nothing from you and we have nothing to give you. What then to trade?" and "Southern metal sticks fingers outside. Ivory, bone and sealskin is strong and does not stick…" but Alaric persists. Eventually Alaric strikes a deal that, in exchange for some Arthedain clothing, the Mulkan will provide enough food for the return journey as well as accommodation for the next two nights, when they will have rested enough to return south. Lumijalat then bids them farewell.
"You stay here in pyöreä talo and we will make one more for you, and one other for Southern animals. But you may not go into Mulkan. Our Henkinimittäjä who is called Unipyydystäyä, which in your tongue is dream-catcher says two nights ago she dream of strangers with bad luck following. So I say that you may not go into Mulkan or you leave on end of spear."

Lumijalat then stands and leaves the snow-house. After briefly talking with the three other men, Lumijalat strolls off into the village (to see Unipyydystäyä). The three Lossoth men then start building two more snow houses. The snow-house for the ponies is larger, with a large opening and a central post to which the ponies are tied. Both snow-houses are built within the hour, something the PCs may marvel at. One of the men brings some fish for the PCs’ supper and as night falls the village falls silent.

A Perception roll from each of the PCs will reveal that, strangely enough, Alaric seems little bothered that the negotiations have gone so badly.

Negotiations (Day 2)

Although the PCs are not allowed within the village, the Mulkan Lossoth soon take an interest in them. At any time during the following days there will be D10-1 spectators hanging around the PCs snow-houses, usually youngsters. The PCs can now start interacting with the Lossoth people, should they wish.

Alaric continues with his trade negotiations with the Mulkan Lossoth.

Koiramies Returns (Evening)

That evening, as the sun is setting, Koiramies returns to Mulkan Kaupunki and causes much excitement with his story of “The giant beads in the belly of the frozen, wooden bird”.

Have each of the PCs make a Perception roll to hear him ‘swoosh’ past on his sled and the excited chatter of the villagers.

A Better Welcome (Day 3)

The following morning Lumijalat visits the PCs in a much better mood and grants them access to the village. If asked why, they have just received unexpected good news and the spirits have told Unipyydystäyä, their Henkinimittäjä, that this is a sign that the PCs are good people. If asked what the good news is, Lumijalat pauses, and then says, "That story belongs to Koiramies, you must ask him".

Koiramies’ Tale

At Mulkan Kaupunki Koiramies continues to cause excitement with his story. The PCs can now enter the village, track down Koiramies’ house and persuade him to tell them his story. As the PCs arrive, Koiramies is just getting ready to leave for a special day’s hunt on the coast and in very poor Westron (rank 1) says, "You want story, you hunt with me" .

That evening the PCs witness a song duel between two villagers over a broken spear.

The Hunt

The PCs are invited by Koiramies on a seal hunt (as per p.96 Northern Wastes sourcebook). This could be an ideal opportunity for the PCs to question Koiramies about his story.

When the PCs bring back Koiramies’ tale, Alaric tells the PCs the story of King Arvedui and the palantíri. Could these ‘spell beads’ be the lost palantíri? Alaric then tries to persuade the PCs to set out to visit the wreck the following day to investigate.

Journey To The Wreck (Day 4)

Alaric, the PCs, Koiramies and 3 other Lossoth depart on dog sleds (maximum of 3 people per sled) bound for Arvedui’s Wreck.

Roll random encounters throughout this journey (Lódalf, Wash Tundra: p.178-179 Northern Wastes sourcebook).

Arvedui’s Wreck (Day 5)

By evening Alaric, the PCs, Koiramies and the 3 Lossoth arrive at Arvedui’s Wreck, only to discover that a hole has been smashed into the boat and the ‘spell beads’ have gone. Deep sled tracks lead out across the ice and a broken Verinen Metsästäjät ice axe lies on the floor of the boat’s cargo hold.

On From The Wreck (Days 6 - 8)

Alaric, the PCs and the Mulkan Lossoth may now wish to leave Arvedui’s Wreck. From here they may either follow the tracks towards Nimraug’s Cave (3 days) or return to Mulkan Kaupunki (2 days).

Roll random encounters throughout this journey (Lódalf, Wash Tundra: p.178-179 Northern Wastes sourcebook).

Nimraug’s Cave (Day 8)

If the PCs are tracking the Verinen Metsästäjät then they arrive at Nimraug’s Cave in the evening, three days after they left Arvedui’s Wreck. The remains of several Verinen Metsästäjät can be seen lying near to the cave. Nimraug is inside the cave (Hard Perception roll to hear a faint snoring) and will poke his nose out if he hears anything (further Hard Perception roll to notice that the snoring has stopped), but will only attack if provoked, he’s feeling full and sleepy!

If the PCs circle the Cave they will find two sets of tracks (Routine Perception rolls): a Light (+10) Tracking roll reveals that the first set come towards Nimraug’s Cave (from the Verinen Metsästäjät village): a further Light (+10) Tracking roll reveals that the other set lead away from the Cave for about a mile, where some kind of camp was made and then on towards Mulkan Kaupunki (this will worry the Mulkan Lossoth). Both sets are of many people and several sleds. A Success in either Tracking roll will reveal that there are less tracks in the second set (leading to Mulkan Kaupunki) and that neither set of tracks includes the deep sled tracks that were present in the tracks from Arvedui’s Wreck to the Cave.

The PCs may correctly guess that the palantíri are now with the Icedrake in the cave. The PCs must now decide what to do and where to go from here. Their Mulkan Lossoth companions would prefer to return to Mulkan Kaupunki, but will accompany the PCs if they insist on continuing to the Verinen Metsästäjät.

To Verinen Metsästäjät (Day 9)

The journey to Verinen Metsästäjät takes 1 day. Roll random encounters throughout this journey (Lódalf, Wash Tundra: p.178-179 Northern Wastes sourcebook).

The PCs follow the tracks to the Verinen Metsästäjät village and arrive this evening to a hostile welcome. The Verinen Metsästäjät will think that they have come for the Horn of Nimraug and there could be some confusion as to who wants what. The Verinen Metsästäjät obviously outnumber them and the Mulkan Lossoth wish to return to Mulkan Kaupunki.

From here the PCs have little choice but to return to Mulkan Kaupunki.

Return To Mulkan

Returning to Mulkan Kaupunki the PCs arrive to find the village in disarray after the Verinen Metsästäjät attack. Lumijalat meets the PCs, her left arm is now in a sling and she is using her spear more for support than as a weapon. Many of the Mulkan villagers have obvious injuries and that evening the PCs witness the sad sight of an injured elder ‘going for a walk’ (p.58 Northern Wastes sourcebook).

That night Nimraug, sensing the disappearance of the Horn and possibly smelling blood on the wind, attacks the village. Several more villagers are killed as well as both of Alaric’s ponies.

The next day Lumijalat visits the PCs and asks for their help in journeying to the Verinen Metsästäjät to retake the Horn of Nimraug. Due to her injuries Lumijalat cannot go with them, but Koiramies and 20 other Mulkan villagers will accompany them.

The journey to the Verinen Metsästäjät village takes 1 day; roll random encounters throughout this journey (Lódalf, Wash Tundra: p.178-179 Northern Wastes sourcebook).

Verinen Metsästäjät, In Force!

After a possibly violent encounter with Rautakäsi and the 15 remaining villagers (10 injured), the PCs discover that Riimulaulaja, Kylmyyskala and a group of the Verinen Metsästäjät have already left for Nimraug’s Cave.

Back To Nimraug’s Cave

The PCs and the Mulkan Lossoth chase after Riimulaulaja and Kylmyyskala to Nimraug’s Cave. They arrive in time to see Riimulaulaja scare away Nimraug with the Horn. The PCs and the Mulkan Lossoth do final battle with the final remaining 15 uninjured Verinen Metsästäjät. During this battle Kylmyyskala uses Leaving III and Invisibility spells to get to the cave. She then slips the smaller of the two palantíri (Annúminas) into her furs and using another Leaving III spell jumps to where her White Warg is waiting for her and then sprints away to the East.

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