Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Freya Encounters, Part III

Quests of Freya
Love can bring both battle and magic. Whatever the case, Freya is there in the end, ready to receive her faithful in the halls of Folkvang. Roll 1d12.

1. Spread love (Gef): Filled with a sense of adoration, a random party member is moved to become matchmaker, pairing the next available person they spot with another who would be fitting. 
2. Enjoy all that life has to offer (Horn): Pleasures abound at a place rumored nearby, with fetching maidens, flagons of mead, and magic to resolve all ails. Those who seek it may find the real challenge is leaving (requiring a save vs. spell/ Will save DC 15) instead.
3. Master the arts of passion (Mardoll): A very attractive woman walks up to a random party member and kisses him passionately. If he allows, she will then instruct him in her very talented romantic arts for the rest of the evening, though he will be (happily) at +1d3 to his mental rolls and -1d3 to his physical rolls the following day, due to all the exertion. The scent of forest fires will be a present reminder too.

4. Master the arts of magic (Galdor): Unless uttered well, the next spell cast by a party member may go awry. He or she must make a Charisma check (DC 15) or the spell will do the opposite of what it's intended to do. Still, if they succeed, then all its effects can be doubled. What is more, if the spellcaster so wishes, the spell may continue to abide by those rules from now on, along with the spell's usual magical side-effects, if he or she is blessed by a priestess of Freya by the next full moon.
5. Master the arts of battle (Hild): A valkyrie descends from Asgard, shimmering with Nordic light. She will become a faithful companion to the nearest faithful of Freya (or Odin) around. To seal the arrangement, she will of course battle them (see Volume I for stats). If they fall, she will then whisk them off to be together in the afterlife. If she falls, then she will resurrect to serve them in this world. 
6. Bring beauty into your life (Skjalf): Stunningly comely and enticing, a woman enters the area. Whether she's a huldra, valkyrie, landvaettir, or simply mortal, all men fall over themselves in her presence. Roll 1d6 to see how each is affected (a save vs. spell/ Will save DC 15 negates): [1-2] is simply quite taken with her, [3-4] is somewhat overwhelmed (0 to -2 to all rolls: 1d3-1), [5] must save vs. spell/ make a Will save DC 15 or stare and drool at her until she moves away, [6] must save vs. death/ make a Will save DC 10 or do whatever it takes to have her for himself!
7. Totemic focus: cats, falcons, or boar: Evidence of destruction is obvious in this area: torn vegetation, disturbed earth, and mostly eaten meals. Close examination will suggest that is done more out of craving desire than any special malice though. If tracked down, the pursuers find either a boar totem (link), falcon totem (link), or a cat totem barbarian follower of Freya, and her cravings will then be directed squarely at them.
8. Practice witchcraft/ shamanism (Seidr): A volva is rumored to fallen on dark ways, forsaking the worship of Freya. Those who encounter her will have trouble telling whether she's simply quite occult or actually follows Hel, for she is grim and quiet, but also quite captivating.
9. Anglo-Saxon, Gothic, or other Germanic tradition (Freo - link, Hretha- link): The quests of similar goddesses can be incorporated too. With minor modification, they can reflect some of Freya's various aspects, or her followers would like them investigated as written. 
10-16. Multiple Quests: reroll twice.

Maiden Beautiful
a Freyan Encounter
An amazingly fetching woman has come to be with a local man, Vigfus. Though passably handsome, few can understand why she chose him, a commoner, nor where exactly she came from. Dubbed the Maiden Beautiful, all they can tell is the happiness and beauty she embodies, and the desire of such that can be greatly enticed in some other men. Unfortunately, a group of giants has gotten wind of her too. Though the Maiden Beautiful has pleasantly declined all other men who would woo her so far, the giants have not taken too kindly, seemingly immune to her charms, and have abducted her. 

Apple orchards in the north give way to a flowing river to the west and boreal forest to the south. A quant thorp lies nestled in-between. Beyond the river is a forested island connected by a bridge. 

(Each square = 10') 

Location 1
The village, Apple Oar, is small and simple. Most basic goods and even some makeshift lodging can be found here. The townsfolk are Norse commoners: pleasant, yet frugal; well abiding, but will fight if need be. They make much of their living from apples and the river and of course are rattled at the recent giant incursion. The party will likely get wind of the Background even before they venture into the only tavern in town, the Tasty Trout (the large building to the west near the bridge). Those interested will be directed to Location 3 where Vigfus now dwells alone. 

Location 2
A quiet and seemingly uninhabited house stands here. In fact, it is still secretly occupied by Hlif, a volva who has turned from worshipping Freya and now follows Hel. She is the one who notified the giants of the Maiden Beautiful and even gave them a charm to resist her power.

Lvl 3 Norse volva of Hel, 
AL: C, MV: 40’, AC: 9, HD: 3, HP: 15, Atk: 1 (whip), Dmg: 1d4, SP: volva abilities, spells prepared (1st: Cure Light Wounds (reverse), Create Water (reverse), Sleep* (filled with nightmares), Spider Climb*, 2nd Level: Hold Person (petrified with fright), SV: C3, Mor: 6, Items: holy symbol, robe, whip, 13 silver pieces. Main Emphasis: There is also a time for sloth, it slows life. Appearance: fair complexion, platinum blond hair, slender. 

Location 3
This simple, yet pleasant dwelling holds Vigfus, dishonored and heartbroken that he could not protect the Maiden Beautiful from the giants. The arrival of the party will galvanize him into action- he will slay the giants or die trying! Experienced members will realize that if he attempts this on his own, the result will most certainly be the latter.

unclassed Norseman,
AL: L, Mve: 40’, AC 8, HD 1, HP: 5, Attk: 1 (axe); Dmg: 1d6; SP: none, SV: F1, Mor: 11, Items: axe, leather armor, 7 silver pieces. Appearance: medium complexion, brown hair, slender

Location 4
Spanning a good 70' across the river, is a wooden bridge. Though relatively new, it looks like it has endured a heavy load recently, hopefully remaining upright for those who wish to traverse it now...

Location 5
Within the woods, three giants have the Maiden Beautiful held captive, tied to a tree. Though her powers of beauty (as described in Freya Quest #6 above) may effect party members who get a good look at her, the giants will remain immune. 

Hill GiantsAlign: C, MV: 40’, AC: 5, HD: 8, Atk: 1 (club), Dmg: 2d8, SP: boulder throwingSV: F9, Mor: 9, Items: club, 1d3 boulders, 1d20 x 10 gold pieces in loot in their bags, one will also have a token that allows them to ignore her powers.

Next week: our series on divinity encounters continues with Hel!