Adventure: Church of Eternal Life [BTS / Nightbane Adventure]:
This adventure is designed or can be modified for either Beyond the Supernatural or Nightbane. The adventure is designed for a small to moderate group and the adventure can be easily modified for various power levels but making the Villains more powerful or more numerous. The setting of the adventure may also be varied to represent where the parties active adventuring area is near. When referring to player characters, also include NPCs that are part of the main group as well. Non combatant NPCs with the group such children should not be included. Characters with astral domains and really high powered characters may be too powerful for this adventure and may be disallowed
It is suggested to use the Vampire from Nightbane as opposed to the one from out of Beyond the Supernatural. This is due to the fact that vampires are better defined and organized. Use rules for vampires in the Day from Rifts: Vampire Kingdoms for information not covered in Nightbane. Also, the following small modifications to the Vampires are useful:
- Not just crosses will effect vampires but any good holy symbol in general. Evil holy systems should be decided by the Game master due to the fact that many evil Deities do not oppose vampires. Holy symbols from evil religions that oppose vampires should work. The problem is that the person must have faith in whatever holy symbol they are using or it is useless. An atheist waving a cross is a pitiful sight. This requires honesty out of the players and discretion from the game master. Some vampires will have the problem that they think the cross will effect them and that is why a cross even held by a person who does not have faith will not effect them.
- Normal Water will not effect Vampires the way listed in the Nightbane RPG book but they still cannot cross bodies of water on their own. Holy water inflicts damage as listed for normal water in the Nightbane game book. As and addition, vampire bites may be cleaned with holy water. When at least one pint of holy water is used to clean a bit for either the slow kill or the cleaning bite, the effects of the bite will be gone. The cleaning does cause intense pain (as if being burned by acid) and the character must save vs pain or pass out.
Adventure Beginning (Middle of the Night Breakdown):
The adventuring group is traveling and run into vehicle problems. This can be an engine overheating, belt going, or anything else that will disable the groups transportation. The group will be at or near a small city. If the traveling vehicle is a small aircraft, allow the group to land at a local aircraft. If it is a automobile, van, or other ground vehicle, have the vehicle break down right next to a mechanics shop.
The city location is somewhere in Pennsylvania (Can be changed to any area as long as it is hilly). The city should be large enough to have a few shopping strips and a down town but no malls and a population of less than 20,000. Buses only run to the city once a day to get to a larger city and the city only has a small airport used by private aircraft and no commercial flights on a regular basis so the ways out of the city are limited. The group will get there in the middle of the night and there will be a presence that makes any members of the group who are sensitive nervous. Other than this, it will seem to be a standard nice looking small city. The group will break down in an area that there is a small strip mall, a grocery store, a older looking but nice cafe, and a hotel. No mechanics shops will be open but they will be able to find a hotel that they can stay for the night. It will be a decent but not extravagant hotel (Motel 6, Econo-Lodge, or another similar hotel chain). The manager will look at couples that wish to use the same room strangely unless they seem to be married. The night will go on uneventfully, This is a good change to give the party a chance to role play, worry about transportation, and pass a subtle clue to the players. If a member of the group turns on a TV, have it go to a news channel and have it about a local incident of someone being ripped apart. The group will be able to communicate out via phone, internet, cellular, or any other means but very little information will be able to be found out about the town.
The First Day:
When the group gets up in the morning, it is assumed that they will go somewhere to get something to eat. If needed, mention that they have not eaten since the following day and that the mechanic shop does not open until.
When the groups goes to either a grocery store or at the local cafe, they will hear two people discussing the fact that there seems to be lights and strange noises near the church on the hill in the middle of the night. Also have them discuss a few recent disappearances. If a group member tries to get closer to listen or comes up to ask them a questions, they will stop talking and not answering any questions. In the store or at the cafe, there will also be missing person signs, far more than might be expects from a city of this size. The food will be good and inexpensive at the local cafe.
When 10 am rolls around, the mechanic shop (either auto or aircraft) and the group (or at least one member) should go to check on their vehicle. The mechanic is older and seems both friendly and honest. He will get to work on the vehicle right away and within a hour will tell what they problem is. It will be a part that will moderate costing but not in stock and will need to be ordered from out of town and will require about three days to get. Aircraft repairs will by general nature be more expensive then automotive repairs will will b reasoable for an aircraft. If asked about the situation with all the disappearance, he will give the answer that he does not know bt will also warn them not to ask too many questions. He will be very nervous through all of this.
If the group is short on funds to stay at the hotel or to get the vehicle repaired, arrange for them to see that work is available to load trucks or other type of labor. The money will not be great but will be enough to pay for the repairs and/or food and hotel bills. This should not be a major problem is the group is traveling by aircraft. Various items can be used to keep the group busy and entertained as well. In the Strip mall there is an interesting clothing store, a video store, sporting goods shop, a pet store, a book store with some new age material, an esarteria shop, to keep the group busy. Have several people also talk about going to evening mass at the Church of Eternal Life but make some reason for the group not to be able to attend this night.
The Second Night (The Mummy and Zombie Attack):
Have the group prepare to go to bed from the night when they hear a pounding on the door and some strange noises. At this point in time, they will discover that they are under attack by mummies and zombies. Have one to two mummies or zombies for each relatively normal character and two to five mummies or zombies as needed for each supernatural (Nightbane for example) character in the party. Zombies can be armed with pistols but should be cheap weapons in general. The party should be capable of defeating them but it should make a lot of noise and damage. Any surviving zombies or mummies will attempt to drag the parts of their pak away so that there is no evidence to be found. The police will not come unless a member of the group calls and the police officer will try and convince the group that nothing occurred. The manager of the Hotel will apologize about teenagers attacking them and if their room is damage, he will offer to change them to another room for free.
The Second Day:
The rest of the night will go on without incident. When the group goes to breakfast, either through going to the cafe or arrange a meeting in the hotel. The person they will be met by will a very distinguished looking gentleman with grey hair and eyes wearing a grey business suit.. He will great the group warmly and after having a long and interesting conversation with the group will tell the group that he is a Deacon at the Church of Eternal Life and that they are invited to come to the church. He will also give them a business card with a phone number so they can catch a ride to the church if needed.
After they get moving, try and get the group into the bookstore or the esoteria store. If there is an NPC in the group, have the person have remembered a book they want to get and drag one or several members of the group into the bookstore. A different attendant will be there that day. An older strange looking lady that dresses in unusual robes and beads much like a gypsy fortuneteller without the hat. If a member of the group is Wiccan or similar religion, this is the best person to have the lady talk to. She will grab this person by the arm and try to get them to go to the back of the store. She will also warn them that they are in danger and that she needs to tell them something to save their life. If she can get them into the back, they will discover that the area is a hidden secret sanctum and has mystical tomes lining the wall and a crystal ball in the center of the room. The floor is a deep carpet and the walls are of dark wood.
She will then tell a story "About two years ago, a preacher came and established the church of eternal life. Where the church is now used to be the house of the richest man in the town. Thomas Jones was very sick and was on his death bed from cancer when he said that he could heal him if he would convert to the Church of Eternal Life. Thomas accepted and three nights later he left the hospital fully healed. The house was rebuilt into a church over the next few months and a flock was quickly gathered for the church. The preacher has said that he guarantees eternal life and he will even give prove of it. Vast donations were given and people were converted that would seem unlike to ever become members of the church. It seems that any person who goes into the church comes out as a true believer or never comes out again. It does no good to tell the police because they seem to not care. Many have and they seem to all disappear within a few days. The only things I can figure is that some type of creature tat has powerful abilities to control has been taking many citizens under its control and I believe it is living in the mansion. Expect danger if you go to the mansion. I have a final area that might interest you. A women from outside the town has joined the church. About eight months ago, in fact. Soon after she arrive in this city and joined the church, I saw some things that are very disturbing to be. It started when some fresh graves being dug up and I have seen wandering dead creatures. She appears to be some type of powerful mage with the dead. This women has black hair with almost black eyes. While men might consider her attractive, I have been near her once and she stunk of the grave."
The Third Night:
If the group decides not to go the Church, attack them with another group of Zombies and Mummies but increase the number of attackers or increase the ratio of Zombies to mummies. Also, arm the Zombies slightly better. Two of the Zombies should be armed with TEC-9 automatic pistols. The resolution should be much like it was the second night. Each night additional that the group is in the town, attack the group with more powerful groups of Zombies and mummies.
The Church of Eternal Life:
Map of Church of Eternal Life
Eventually the group will end up going to the church, either invited at night or during the day to investigate the church. The "gentleman" that gave the group the business card will drive them out to the church at dusk but during the day, it is harder to get to the church. The group can attempt to steal a car or hitchhike. The church is about two hours walking if they go that route. The church itself is a handsome granite mansion the looks to have been constructed in the late eighteen hundreds. The building does look to be a church but does not have any holy symbols on it. The church has a few hundred acres of land that were original the owner's of the mansion. The church itself is close to a ley line and there is a nexus point on the church property. This area is used by the mage to boost her magical energies to create mummies and zombies.
The Master Vampire does not allow wild vampires and will punish secondary vampires if they produce another secondary vampire without his permission. In the case of Wild Vampires, the master has them destroyed due to the fact that they are too disruptive. If a secondary vampire angers the master vampire, he will lock them up for several days without being allowed to feed. As might be expected, Thomas Jones is a secondary vampire. Many of the other secondary vampires are important members of the community. There are two night police officer and a coroner that are secondary vampires.
The number of vampires in the game is decided by the player group size. There will be only one master vampire but there will be one secondary vampire for each “normal” player character and two to four secondary vampires for each "Supernatural" player. The numbers should be judged by the power level of the characters. In addition, the master vampire has two female human servants (twins) that are his lovers which they hope in the future he will turn them into vampires as well. They are very attractive (PB 20), tall with blond hair and blue eyes, and innocent looking although they will try and harm the group as well. They do not have hand to hand skills so their combat skills are limited but they are easy to misjudge. They will pretend to be in need of rescue but try and trap the group. The female mage is actually a Necromancer and specializes in the controlling of the dead and she has collected quite a group of Zombies. Mummies, and animated dead. While she is also attractive, she does not have the innocent look of the twins. She has a very ruthless way of using animated dead. She straps them with explosives and has them pull pins on grenades that they have strapped around them when they grab people. When used in this fashion, they have a horror factor of 12.
The church is in virtual complete control of the town. The master carefully uses his and his secondary vampires ability to create bonded human servants. These include the city's mayor, chief of police, several other police officers, a lawyer, and many others. The managers of the hotel that they group is staying on are also included on this list. In combat with the party against vampires, if minions are present, the minions will attept to help the vampires by trying to remove holy symbols from player charcaters. Through careful selection, people going through the town and people who are not likely to be noticed are selected as victims to feed the church.
During Night time:
This is when the church is at its most dangerous. All of the Vampires will be awake along with many of their servants. The whole church will be well lit up and look very cheery but characters who are sensitive will be very nervous. The main hall will be fairly full and the people will be a mixture of Secondary Vampires, Bonded Human Servants, Humans who wish to become vampires themselves, and victims. Sometimes the third group will become the fourth. They 'acolytes' of the church will try and break up the group into seating in various places so that they cannot work togther but will not force anyone. The church services will begin (if the group stays there) praising their lord (while the words are unusual, the words are enough like what might be expected in a normal church service not to raise suspicion. They will refer often to the Lord which they are not referring to the Christian God but in fact referring the vampire intelligence. The master vampire will then arrive in what looks like holy robes but with no holy symbols. He will refer to everyone having a feast after the sermon and will begin a sermon (no bible passages though) about how his lord will give eternal life. The sermon will end with a meal prayer thanking the 'Lord' for the bounty that the church will receive and the vampires will unmask themselves. The master vampire might select attractive females for himself and try to take them to his personal lair. The players will be out numbered by vampires and human minions and they will have two options. The first is to run. There will be some fighting but the Vampires are also occupied by their other victims. As they retreat, attack them with some vampires and zombies, mummies, and animated dead but allow them to get away if the players are intelligent about trying to get away. The other option is to fight them. Players that are good tacticians and well equipped may be able to survive but the odds will be against the group in most cases standing and fighting. The best option in most cases will for the group to make a retreat and come back.
If the group does survive the encounter and get away, they will discover that their vehicle and rooms was destroyed while they away from them. The mechanic will be very frightened and found cowered in the bathroom his shop due to the fact of being attacked by Zombies and Mummies. The group will find that all weapons and ammunition that they left will either be destroyed or taken. Holy symbols and anything else that would be useful against vampires will be taken as well. The attendants will not be at the Hotel and if the player characters try and stay at the hotel, they will be continuously attacked by mummies, zombies, and animated dead. The vampires will not risk themselves unnecessarily.
While going into the Church during the daytime is safer, there are still dangers. Any shots or other loud noises will put everybody in the church on alert and minions outside of the church will begin to arrive as soon as 15 minutes and all minions will be at the church within 30 minutes. Depending on how the situation is going, the minions in the police force will also bring in other police officers. The Master Vampire posts several human servants to defend them while they are sleeping. The servants will be armed with firearms and one of them will be one of the Police Officers that they have under control. He/she will also be of fourth level and will have his firearm skills higher than the others. The women Necromancer while she normal sleeps during the day, she can operate normally during the day as well.
Rooms of the Church:
Most of the room are fairly standard and are bedrooms and classrooms. The classrooms are there to make the building look like it really is a church. The floors of all the rooms are hardwood and the building internally is well constructed. All windows are either boarded up or are covered with very thick curtains to prevent sunlight from entering although the vampires do not wander around the rooms during the day and it is mainly a precaution. Some of the bedrooms will be occupied by human minions and the number will be based on the party size as listed. The amount of human minions that stay at the "Church" should be about 1/4 to 1/3 of the human minions that the vampires have. Only one vampire sleeps outside of the basement area and that is the Secondary vampire Thomas Jones.
Back Storage Room:
This room is entered though a door behind the curtains that are themselves behind the altar. The room is filled with all sorts of items including carpeting, religious decorations, and all sorts of identifiable and unidentifiable items. The stuff is put in the room haphazardly and it is impossible to see the area of the trap door from the entrance. The room is dusty but the floor is swept which will keep people form being able to see if there are tracks. A success tracking roll will reveal that there is a large amount of traffic going through this room.
The Master Bedroom:
This is the only room that a Vampire sleeps outside of the basement areas. This is the room that the secondary vampire Thomas Jones sleeps at. It is expensively decorated in black fur and silk. Much of the furniture is antique and is worth a fortune. In his room, he also has some Jewelry and old coins of high value (about 200,000 market value). While this upstairs room had windows, they are covered on the inside with boards that are painted black. It will take a person without supernatural strength about 10 minutes to pry the windows open with a crowbar. If given a chance to escape, he will retreat to the buildings basement with the other vampires.
This upstairs room has bare wood floors and the walls are lined with book shelves. The room has various tables around the room. There are no books in this library that are magical tomes and no book in the library dated after 1979. Mr Jones was not a big reader and book the books to decorate his library and make himself look like a learned man.
The Rooms of the Necromancer:
The necromancers rooms are also upstairs. She had a door made between two bedrooms and uses one as a bedroom and the other as her Lab. All of the doors to her rooms are enchanted with mystic alarms so she will be warned if anyone tries to enter her room. None of the human minions or vampires are allowed in her rooms.
Her bedroom is done in black silks and there are no items to suggest necromancy in the room. She has a large wardrobe of clothing and she also has several thousand dollars worth of Jewelry. These were taken from the various bodies she has animated and chopped up for other uses. The room is scented by incense but a creature with acute smell will be able to smell death from the next room.
He lab looks very different that most of the rooms in the house. It looks much like a coroners room. The walls are white painted and the floor is terrazzo. The room contains several stainless steel tables and in the back of the room are two large freezers. Her lab contains many body parts (which is what the smell is coming from) as well as spell components lining tables and shelves. The room contains books which includes both magical tomes and books about anatomy and similar subjects. The floor has several magic circles inscribed on the floor. As might be expected, the freezers are full of human body parts.
Main Basement Area:
Upon entering the stairs to get to the basement, two smells will assault the groups sense of smell. One is of the rotting of flesh and the other is of acid. The basement is actually several rooms without doors dividing them and as soon as the main room is entered, it can be seen that the room is filled with dead bodies with many being in various stages of decomposition. This room is the main storage area for the necromancers dead and animated dead. The mummies and zombies that attacked the group came from here. The floor of the room is concrete but is covered by a lot of dust and decayed materials from the dead body. There is also a small chance of finding pieces of jewelry from dead bodies that were missed when they were pulled from the grave. The smell of acid comes from several vats of acid used to destroy bodies. Also located in the same area is the mansions water heaters.
Some of the dead bodies are in reality Zombies and Mummies. Have one zombie and two mummies for each normal player character and two zombies and four mummies for each player character that is supernatural. The were given instruction that even if the Necromancer has been killed or disabled, the zombies and mummies will attack the group. If the necromancer is still alive and knows what is going on, the group will also be attacked by animated dead with one in four being strapped with grenades. The attacks should be made in stages because the Zombies and Mummies are scattered through the rooms and will take time to get to the player character and they can retreat to the trap door so they only have to deal with a few at a time. Animated dead will come last due to the fact that the necromancer needs time to animate them.
In on corner of the center room is an area of floor which is not covered by bodies or body parts. If looked at carefully, it will be noticed that there are cracks all around one area of concrete. Through more careful looking, the group will find a lever on one side of the door which opens the door a crack. The door will then require a strength of 20 supernatural or 50 non supernatural strength (several people can combine) and will loudly shreak when opened.
The trapdoor opens up into a long tunnel that seems (and is natural). These tunnels were used by the original owner of the house as wine storage and both whole and broken bottles and casks of wine can be found. The unbroken containers have long become vinegar but the bottles are old with some dating from the 1890s and the newest being around 1920. The tunnel winds into the hills for about eight hundred feet.
Near the end of the tunnel, coffins can be seen to line the walls. Most of them are very new and of high quality. If the coffins are stripped of their decorations, the fixtures would be worth about 40,000 dollars. These are the resting places of most of the secondary vampires. If the vampires have been warned and it is during the day, all of the secondary vampires will be ready for a fight although lethargic. They will use firearms and other weapons as well although most will fight in hand to hand combat. During the night, the room will be empty. If they have not been warned, this will be a good chance for the party to catch the vampires as they are sleeping. Some of the coffins also contain valuables the vampires owned while they were alive.
At the end of the tunnel is a door that seems to go to a very unusual corridor.
This is the rooms the master vampire sleeps at. What will be noticed first by the group is an octagon corridor with stone walls that simply goes from the entrance and them back to the entrance. In fact, the corridor surrounds a room that is also octagon in shape. The way into this room is through one of four secret doors. These doors can be found by noticing the slight cracks in the wall. The group will then enter into the main room. The floor is lined with black and red marble tiles and there are two large coffins made of white marble with silver fittings in the center of the room. The two coffins are about four feet away from each other. Lining the outside walls of the room are stone statues. Four of them are guardian stones that will attack anyone entering into this room. The coffins are in reality decoys or they may be planned for the two women if he decided to turn them into vampires. The coffins are well decorated in silk and satin but neither contains a body.
The real resting place of the master vampire is under the floor between the two coffins. There is a very well concealed secret door (-20% to detect) in the floor which leads to a relatively large room which is the sleeping location of the master vampire. During the day, both he and his twin human lovers will be down here. This is incase his secondary vampires do not succeed and he does not expect this chamber to be discovered. His plan is to escape in the night to find a new place to go. If found, he will try and fight and so will the two women. They will use 9 mm Barretta pistols but do not have hand to hand or weapon skills so the main danger will the master vampire. The room wall are covered by dark oak paneling and the room looks for the most part like a standard master bedroom.
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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).
Copyright © 2000, Kitsune. All rights reserved.