Out of the Abyss

(Jeff_L) #1
wearing inside his collar. Though adornment for
adornment's sake is something duergar society frowns
upon, the guards' violent response was unnatural- a
hint of the growing madness festering inside the City
of Blades.

A female deep gnome named Ariana and her earth
elem ental bodyguard approach the party. Ariana aims
to deliver a cargo of gemstones, but she can't find the
duergar merchant she's supposed to meet. She assumes
the characters are smugglers and tries to unload her
goods: ten sparkly garnets worth 100 gp each. Ariana
keeps the gems in a bag of holding, which isn't for sale.
The merchant whom Ariana is looking for was
recently arrested and executed for selling stolen
jewelry. You can decide whether Ariana's interest in the
characters attracts the attention of a duergar patrol.
Subsequent occurrences of this encounter are with
other deep gnome merchants who ignore the characters
unless approached. They carry nothing of value.

A mob of derro (see appendix C) rampages through the
streets. Five of them detach from the mob to attack the
characters. Four duergar patrols (see "Duergar Patrol'')
arrive when the characters kill the last derro, but they
simply nod at the characters before repressing the rest
of the mob. Word quickly spreads that the characters
helped the city guard control the unruly derro scum. At
your discretion, give the characters advantage on checks

The gray dwarves are dour, joyless, and all business. They
live by a simple but exacting code of law, honor, hard work,
and seeing all non·duergar as lesser creatures. Duergar
are ruthless but not unnecessarily cruel, and pragmatism
drives their every decision. Though they treat the
adventurers with contempt, their first thought is to enslave
them or use them rather than kill them.
The duergar of Gracklstugh are beginning to suffer the
effects of the arrival of the demon lord s-and specifically
the influence of Demogorgon. Many are developing t ics,
habits, and behaviors that fly against t heir core beliefs,
including guards flaunting their corrupt behavior, the
use of adornment for adornment's sake, and disloyalty to
their clans. Of late, the folk of Gracklstugh have become
increasingly more violent, abandoning their characteristic
cunning and stoic pragmatism for wanton malice and
petty displays of self-entitlement.
Unlike the disciplined duergar, the derro are sloppy,
erratic, and utterly insane. Their temperament is fickle,
and their speech hard to follow. The one guaranteed
emotion they have when interacting with others is seething
hatred, and they make no effort to hide it. Their eyes are
shifty, their teeth grind, and they look as though they
would rather be somewhere else. They hate everyone and
everything, but surface-dwellers are particular targets of
their loathing.
Their inherent insanity means that the derro suffer no ill
effect from the demon lords' presence, their minds already
too volatile and mercurial.


made to interact with any duergar in the city until such
time as the benefit no longer seems appropriate.

A drow proudly wearing the insignia of a drow house
travels with an entourage of ld4 + 1 quaggoth slaves.
The drow is in Gracklstugh to retrieve a cargo of
duergar metalwork and knows nothing about the recent
events in Velkynvelve. Roll a d6 and consult the Drow
House Loyalty table to determine the house to which the
drow is affiliated.

d6 House
1- 2 House Baenre
3-4 House Faen Tlabbar
S- 6 House Xorlarrin

House Faen Tlabbar and House Mizzrym are bitter
rivals. If the drow emissary belongs to House Faen
Tlabbar and the characters divulge that they are
enemies or former prisoners of House Mizzrym, the
drow warns the party about Xalith (see "Signs of
Pursuit" later in the chapter).
House Baenre and House Xorlarrin are current allies
of House Mizzrym. A drow emissary allied with House
Mizzrym who knows that the characters are escaped
prisoners from Velkynvelve seeks out Xalith and warns
her that the characters are in G racklstugh.

A patrol consists of ld 4 + 2 duergar, all but two of
whom are invisible. Invisible duergar can sneak up on
a character by making a Dexterity (Stealth) check with
advantage, contested by the character's passive Wisdom
(Perception) score.

The characters encounter a duergar afflicted with a
form of indefinite madness. Roll a dlO and consult
the Mad Duergar table to determine what the party

1-2 A merchant desperate to sell his wares, convinced
that his life depends on it.
3-4 A street sweeper who hounds the characters while
accusing them of being spies working for the drow.
S-6 A cloaked guard who thinks he's Deepking Horgar
Steel shadow V drafts the party to help him s lay
Themberchaud, convinced that the dragon is
possessed by a demon lord.
7-8 A merchant who accuses the characters of theft and
calls out for a duergar patrol to arrest them.
9-10 A weaponsmith convinced that one of the
characters is a long-lost member of her clan and
who insists on giving the party food and shelter.
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