Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Poseidon Encounters, Part III

Quests of Poseidon
Watery adventure awaits. Will the tides cause such endeavor to become an odyssey? Roll 1d20./

1-2. Set your sails for adventure! The place the party next revisits seems different. The reason is (roll 1d4): [1] It has been occupied by followers of Athena or some of Poseidon's other rivals, [2] The tide has come in, rearranging things a bit,  [3] It is actually an otherworld (see table listed under Manannan in Volume II), [4] It is actually the same, the party has just been adventuring too long.

3-4. Respect the sea, ‘tis Lord Poseidon’s domain: Sailors speak of beautiful women arising at a certain stretch of sea. Those who seek them out will find them to be (roll 1d5): [1] oceanids (see Part II),
[2] nereids (see Part II), [3] mermaids, [4] sirens (see below & link), [5] various types- reroll twice.

5-6. 'Tis good work in avasting ye scallywags! 1d3 vagabonds are in the area, doing such vagabond things (see Volume I). 2d3 nautical types (see Part II) will soon show up too, likely doing even worse things to the vagabonds.

7-8. There’s Poseidon’s work in earthquakes too: The earth shakes, causing all structures within 1/4 mile to have a 75% chance of collapsing. Followers of Poseidon will be thankful, most others will not. 

9-10. Horses, Horse Totem: Tales speak of a swift steed, especially sacred to the sea. Those who acquire it will find that it is indeed fast, not only afoot, but swimming too, but has an unfortunate tendency to charge into any water that it spots, no matter the rider's interests.

11. Bulls, Bull Totem: Pirates are spotted in the area, bearing a strange, bull device on their flag. That their leader is actually a minotaur will likely draw more attention than their association with Poseidon, though other mariners would be grateful if they were stopped.

12. Fish, Fish Totem: Does something smell off to you? Though Poseidon may be popular in this area, things seem to be amiss. Those investigate the docks will find that those who follow his fish aspect have begun to worship Dagon instead (whether knowingly or not), and his main cult would like them netted.

13. Rivalry with other gods: A competitor sea god has become active of late (roll 1d6): [1] Glaucus (ascended mortal, friend to nautical types), [2] Nereus (old man of the sea, kind, father of the nereids), [3] Oceanus (titan of the great sea and rivers), [4] Phorcys (father of sea monsters), [5] Pontus (primordial being of the sea itself), [6] Proteus (wise at foretelling and transforming). Followers of Poseidon will pay well to have his intentions be identified to see if they be corresponded with- or subsumed.

14. Abduction of potential wives, and the resulting offspring: A local noblewoman has gone missing. Auguries suggest that she has been 'taken by Poseidon'. What that means exactly, only a quest will tell. (roll 1d6): [1] Poseidon himself, [2] strong currents while swimming, [3] pirates!, [4] a cyclops, [5] a minotaur, [6] human followers of Poseidon.

15. Archaic, Mycenean: Here Poseidon is followed much as in his earlier days. His bull cult is prominent, he is wedded to Potnia (link), and with her, he is seen the king of all. Followers of Zeus will certainly take issue with that.

16-20. Reroll twice.

See also Ocean encounters in Volume I.


The Isle of Nereids
Upon the high seas, both disaster and solace can be found. The succor of Poseidon's women can be equally as uncertain.

Map by (modified)
Each square = 5'.
Blue is ocean, Brown is rugged shoreline, Tan is sandy beach, Green is sandy forest

Location 1
Warm ocean breezes welcome this likely landing for the party. Waters drift past the otherwise rugged shoreline, allowing for easier access. Those who wish to access the island otherwise must make climbing checks for 5' to 10', or else fall back into the sea. Here though, the mood is bright, pleasant, sandy, and oceanic. An isthmus lies ahead, beckoning to the greater portion of the island. 

Location 2
The narrow stretch of beach is flanked by drops on either side. Those who are friend to Poseidon (or at least not his enemy) will pass through pleasantly. Those who aren't will be beset by 1d3 sirens who will attempt to lure interlopers back into the sea with their songs. Those who aren't as skilled at swimming might then meet a watery doom, however lovely. 

MV 40’/ swim 80', AC 9 (0 vs. those who are attracted to her), HD 3, Atk (none), SP: +1 weapons or better required to hit, breathe water, charm person at will that draws men to them (save vs. spell/ Will save DC 15 negates), SV: E3, Mor: 7, AL: C

Location 3
The sandy beaches are warm and bright. A palpable sense of Poseidon's might can be felt here too, granting a +1 to all rolls made by his faithful. 1d10 nereids can be found here too, happy to enjoy like-minded souls. Others will be given subject to their mischief (while enjoying the +1 bonus), turning back to water or even calling upon Theoros (at Location 4) if greatly threatened.

MV 40’/ 80' swim, AC 9 (0 vs. those who are attracted to them), HD 3, Atk (none), SP: allure, charm person, animal summoning, plane shift, alter self, breathe water, water form (can turn to water and back after 1d3 rounds)- all as level 7 clerics of Poseidon, SV: M9, Mor: 6, AL N

Location 4
A nexus of sand, surf, and trees occurs at this location. Emerging from the beach woods to the south is a large, bull-headed man; stalwart and calm to friends of Poseidon, belligerent and charging to others. 

Theoros the Minotaur
MV: 50’, AC: 6, HD: 8, Atk: 2, Dmg: 2d6 (gore) & by weapon (+2 damage), SP: can gore for double damage on a charge, surprised only on a 1, immune to mazes, 50% chance to track, gains 1 randomly determined bull barbarian special ability, must save vs. death/ make a Will save DC 10 to not engage in violence or other carnal appetition, bull legs, SV: F8, Mor: 12.

Location 5
Shaded from the sky, but still open to the ocean view, this sunken forest is limited in its growth by the latter's salt air (see also its real-world equivalent for a deeper description). The winding trails lends to Poseidon's chaotic ways, with encounters happening along the way, culminating near the center with the lady of this place, Iaera.

Sunken Forest Encounters
1d12: a 1 in 3 chance of an encounter every 1d12 rounds.
1. Clearing, trees giving way to saltmarsh grasses
2. Harmless animal (a bird, squirrel, or deer)
3-4. 1d6 Nereids
5. Oceanid
6. Dryad
7. Lost (but happy) sailor or other nautical-type
8. Hill, rise of 1d6 x 5'
9. Valley, dip of 1d6 x 5'
10. Clearing, path opens 1d6 x 5'
11. Split to two paths, stairs, or overlook (equal chance of any)
12. Cyclops!

Iaera the Honeyed One, Lvl 4 nereid priestess of Poseidon, Align: C, MV: 40'/ 80' swim, AC 6, HD: 4, HP: 28, Atk: none, SP: allure, charm person, animal summoning, plane shift, alter self, breathe water, water form (can turn to water and back after 1d3 rounds)- all as level 7 cleric of Poseidonspells prepared (1st Level: Create Water, Cure Light Wounds, Purify Food and Drink (making it kind of salty), Protection from Evil, Sanctuary, 2nd Level: Augury, Hold Person (a phantom plank or anchor may appear under the target), Warp Wood (D), SV: C11, Mor: 8, Items: holy symbol, robes. Main Emphasis: no special emphasis, Appearance: blond hair, stocky build, medium complexion.

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