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City Museum Free 60×40 Battlemap & Adventure

City Museum Free 60x40 Battlemap & Adventure featuring a horrific lovecraftian tale sure to disturb your players. VTT ready!
City Museum Free 60x40 Battlemap & Adventure featuring a horrific lovecraftian tale sure to disturb your players. VTT ready!
City Museum Free 60×40 Battlemap & Adventure featuring a horrific lovecraftian tale sure to disturb your players. VTT ready!

City Museum Free 60×40 Battlemap & Adventure

Monolith of the Deep

While staying at a tavern, your meal is interrupted by an out of breath man stumbling through the front door. His clothes are tattered and his right arm looks broken. In his left hand he is carrying a heavy iron hammer.  The man frantically screams for help, claiming that some type of abomination is trying to kill him. As he moves further into the tavern, he collapses to the ground and begins crawling. Looking back toward the door, the man screams again that it’s here and pleads for someone to help him. Rolling onto his back, he raises a hand in what appears to be an attempt to defend himself, but you can’t see what he might be reacting to.

Before you can even blink the man’s left arm is raised and he smashes the hammer into his face. Gurgling blood, the man continues to scream for help as he smashes the hammer into his head again and again with his left hand, as his right hand attempts to fend off some imaginary beast from atop. Then the screaming suddenly stops and his body goes limp revealing his caved in head, his blood pooling on the wooden planks of the tavern’s floor.

The other patrons turn pale and a silence falls over the tavern which is only interrupted by the tavern owner returning to the room with his hands full of the patron’s dinners, which are dropped as the tavern owner in bewilderment asks what the fuck happened.  The guard’s are called and everyone is told to stay where they are until they’re asked to move so that the guards can get everyone’s story of what happened. The guards in question are polite but disturbed by your story, they insist on organizing alternative accommodation for you and you’re told not to leave the city until everything is sorted as they may need more from you.  The next morning when you go downstairs from your newly appointed tavern you find a lithe modest woman with black hair and wearing a long flowing dress with silk gloves, covering all of her skin except her face, where she wears a pair of librarian spectacles. She approaches you, asking if you were part of the group who saw the death of a man named Gren last night? She describes the man, who to your recollection fits the bill.  If you ask why she wants to know, the woman sighs sadly, explaining that her name is Dr.Elara Briggs and that Gren was an employee of hers at the city’s museum working as a caretaker over the night. Elara continues that recently Gren became convinced that one of their newly released exhibitions which feature a series of ancient blackstone artifacts have something wrong with them.

Elara says that she caught Gren in the museum last night when she was staying late to catalog some new arrivals, when she found him in the blackstone exhibition room standing in front of one particular large blackstone obelisk, with an iron hammer in his hand. He said he was going to destroy the artifact but when he raised his hammer to it he instead just screamed in terror before hitting his arm with the hammer instead and running off.

Elara claims she attempted to follow him but he was simply too fast. That was the last Elara saw of him until receiving news this morning of his untimely death from a friend in the guard. Elara explains that her friend couldn’t divulge much information due to the ongoing investigation but they were able to point her toward you without breaking the rules. As such Elara asks you what happened last night in the tavern with Gren?  Disturbed by what you tell her, Elara questions if perhaps Gren might have been correct in his theory. Noting your garb, Elara asks if you’re available for hire for a few days while she closes the museum to investigate the black stone artifacts. With concern, Elara explains that even with Gren’s theory she can’t just destroy priceless artifacts without proof and that hopefully either you find something and you can dispose of the artifacts or you find nothing and life can continue as normal.

If you agree, she tells you to meet her at the museum later that day. The Museum is large and Elara greets you at the door before telling you to just take your time and explore at the museum as you see fit and she’ll be in the back cataloging if you need anything.  Exploring the museum you find trinkets and weapons from all around the world. However, when entering the blackstone exhibit something feels off, almost ominous, the reflective black stone mirroring your face but almost distorted. Nothing else of note happens on the first day making it seem like a regular old museum, unless you approach the largest obelisk with malice or the thought of destroying it.  If that occurs you must make a will save or you feel the urge to get closer to it, once you’re right next to it it’s almost like a portal opens up and you see visions of abominations from the depths of the sea within the stone which reach out their arms to grab you, pulling your head into their underwater realm, making you drown.

Anyone not influenced by the stone will see you instead smashing your head against the stone, in what looks like an attempt to kill yourself. On the second day, those of weak will might experience brief visions, reflections of the briny depths in mirrors or glass, incredible itching which when itched reveals scales under their skin, text within any tome changing into an unknown language, etc.  If you talk to Elara about any of this she grows concerned, explaining that she has heard enough and the artifacts must be destroyed before what happened to Gren happens to you. If you ask if she’s being a little hasty and how she knows it’s the black stone artifacts causing the visions and not anything else in the museum, she explains that the black stone’s were found under the sea off the coast by a trawling vessel and the visions you’ve experienced all seem to focus on the ocean.

Elara collects some heavy tools that are used to open crates and asks for you to follow her. Upon arriving at the black stone exhibition, nothing seems out of the ordinary. Elara requests you assist her in destroying the artifacts but as she moves to strike the obelisk she pauses noticing briny water that has begun to pool under the obelisk, pouring from the very stone even though there appears to be no openings.

Elara backs up in shock before a sudden wave of water flows through the black obelisk like a tidal wave, knocking over Elara and sweeping her back into the museum’s corridors. For those perceptive, they might notice a portal similar to the one in an early vision filled with abominations from the depths of the sea has truly opened up on the black obelisk causing the museum to begin filling with water at an astounding rate. In addition, you notice the horrible dark shadows of deformed fishfolk now appearing within the briny ocean waters within the museum who move to assail you.  Once the black obelisk is broken and the fishfolk defeated, the waters recede like magic, disappearing as if soaking into the stone floors. Elara returns, shocked, soaked and bewildered, thanking you for saving her and who knows what else before collapsing into your arms.

GM’s Notes:

Those attempting to strike the black obelisk directly, will, just like Gren be subject to the visions which caused himself to end his own life if they fail a will save, each round the player will attack themselves with whatever weapons they can find while believing they’re being attacked by horrible monstrosities. Each round however, they will get another chance for a will save to break this effect. Once broken they cannot be affected again for a time.

The Black Obelisk is a remnant of an ancient city that worshiped the god of the deep. Crafted and imbued by master craftsmen from blackstone pulled from the greatest depths of the sea, with the entire construction taking over 100 years. The visions that stone gives were seen as blessings to the people who built it but its ultimate design was to function as a gateway to the depths, being used to flood the city and bring them closer to their god.

If you’d enjoy more TTRPG resources like this City Museum Free 60×40 Battlemap & Adventure, Luke and I have released our newest Hardcore GM’s bundle of 520 large, 40×30″ battlemaps (double the size of those in the Quarantine Bundle) with 255 fantasy adventurefor $39. It’s your chance to have a great deal on some of our most beautiful maps! We guarantee that is something here for every GM—no matter what setting you prefer, from large cities to underwater seascapes.

Paying just $39 rather than full price saves you over 98%! Take a look at all the extra maps you can download with one click in the Hardcore GM’s Bundle here

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