The Wild Beyond the Witchlight: Reimagined
Welcome to part eight of The Wild Beyond the Witchlight: Reimagined, an expansion and alternative take on the The Wild Beyond the Witchlight campaign. Please check out the previous entries in the series before diving in here!
- Introduction and Table of Contents
- Part 0: Adventure Outline
- Part I: Preparation
- Part II: Lost Things
- Part III: Interlude
- Part IVA: The Witchlight Carnival (Section A)
- Part IVB: The Witchlight Carnival (Section B)
- Part V: Murkendraw (Welcome to the Swamp)
- Part VI: Murkendraw (Locations of the Swamp)
- Part VII: Murkendraw (Downfall and Bavlorna)
Ah – the Fields of Spring. The air is humming with birdsong, filled with butterflies and pollen, and the sun floats in the sky all day and night long (think summer in Iceland!). Like with Murkendraw and Hither, we will be leveraging the content from Thither for this portion of the campaign. However, this area has been expanded extensively, most notably through the addition of the town of Vale Crossing and its associated quests. Given the significant amount of my own homebrew, I especially heartily welcome any and all posts of feedback here!
A few notes on the Fields of Spring from an overall perspective:
- Given the amount of plot threads here and the fact that the overall storyline begins to ramp up, if your party doesn’t already take notes I would give a friendly suggestion for them to start to do so
- Because so much of this part of the campaign is homebrew, you should assume you can ignore most parts of the Thither chapter of the book. I will mention when you should reference the book
- Unlike Thither, Skabatha Nightshade is not the ruler of the land. She simply rules over Loomlurch
- As with Hither, the party’s lost things are not here
- Squirt the oilcan has been removed altogether (sorry little buddy!)
- As with Hither, tzlynart created a Painting Thither series with art of each the major locations. I would again highly recommend to show these as handouts to your players as they arrive to each area
- We will not be using the map of Thither provided in the book. Instead, we will leverage the map below which makes this area of the campaign much more of an open-ended sandbox like the Witchlight Carnival
- You’ll notice a lack of fairy rings on the map. These have also been removed (but are co-opted as an event later)
- Last but not least you’ll likely notice some hints of changes to come (such as certain members of Valor’s Call and The League of Malevolence being here and not elsewhere)
While the party won’t have access to the map for a while yet, see below for the locations for your reference.
- Folly Bridge
- Town of Vale Crossing
- Goblin Logging Camp
- Little Oak
- The Wayward Pool
- The Burrow
- Nib’s Cave
- Snark’s Lair
- The Green Keep
What’s Going on Here?
So what’s happening in the Fields of Spring? Quite a lot as you’ll see! To start with let’s rehash a bit of history from the Adventure Outline that will be relevant, as well as a bit of additional lore.
- In the Fields of Spring, Oberon — the Green Lord — was the unofficial ruler of the land. After the War of the Seasons 10 years ago, he disappeared and was nowhere to be found
- The Fae goblins, led by the Goblin King Great Gark, leveraged the power vacuum to seize control of The Green Keep where Oberon ruled, as well as much of the surrounding land
- The goblins formed an alliance with the hag Skabatha Nightshade who rules over Loomlurch, Oberon’s old hunting lodge. Outside of the occasional goblin raiding party, Vale Crossing has been left alone by both of these parties
- However, the goblins have begun logging operations within the Shroudwood for the magically enhanced wood from the trees there. This was strictly forbidden during Oberon’s days and is very unpopular within the town but the people of Vale Crossing have done little other than complain about the situation
- Rumors have begun to spread that both the Summer and Winter Courts are quietly preparing for a new war. It’s even said that Queen Mab has a powerful new advisor, a sorceress named Zybilna who is helping to prepare a weapon to defeat Titania once and for all. Meanwhile, the Summer Court is strangely quiet
When the players arrive in the Fields of Spring they will be seeking their lost things. The party hasn’t had much luck with this so far, striking out at both the carnival and Murkendraw. While they don’t know it yet, they’ll eventually realize that they’ve missed the mark again, and their lost things are in fact in the bitter cold confines of Yon. As a result, the ultimate goal will be for the players to leave the Fields and Spring and head to Yon.
Unfortunately, the party will find that getting to Yon is no easy task. Queen Mab of the Winter Court erected a magical translucent barrier sealing off Yon from all of the other domains after the War of Seasons 10 years ago. But where there’s a will – there’s a way! The party will need a magical item called a Leyfi Runestone to get through the barrier to Yon with three main options to do so:
- Convince or force Granny Nightshade to create a Leyfi Runestone (requires a Snark or Unicorn Horn)
- Steal the recipe for a Leyfi Runestone from Loomlurch and have Sam Bewick from Vale Crossing craft it (requires a Snark or Unicorn Horn)
- Obtain or steal a Leyfi Runestone from the goblins in the The Green Keep
Wondrous item, rare
While holding the runestone, you and up to eight willing creatures of your choice that you can see can pass through the magical barrier surrounding the land of Yon.
However that’s just the end goal! There’s a lot to that can be done along the way. Like the Witchlight Carnival, the Fields of Spring is designed as a sandbox. As a result, the players can do as much or as little as they’d like. I will warn though that Loomlurch and The Green Keep are the two most dangerous areas for the players (unless they’re just visiting to chat) and it’s recommended to try and steer your players elsewhere until they reach Level 5.
The events here will probably look something like the following:
- Flying into Spring: The players arrive on their swamp gas balloon but have to make a crash landing soon after
- Folly Bridge: Wandering from the balloon crash site, the party encounters a bridge troll blocking their way
- Vale Crossing: Having made their way past the bridge, the PCs discover the melting pot town of Vale Crossing. The town serves as a quest hub where players can learn about the area, obtain quests, and shop
- (A lot of) Side Quests: Enough said? Probably not – we’ll get into this in a bit!
- Obtain a Leyfi Runestone: See above
- The Trek North: Once the party is ready it’s time to head through the magical shield and into Yon
If I haven’t made it obvious already there’s a lot of plot threads at work in the Fields of Spring so I’ll lay them out here from a high level so they’re easy to follow.
One note is given the open-ended nature of the Fields of Spring it is a bit more challenging to determine when to give your players a level up. I would recommend something like the following:
- Level 5: Complete about two big tasks (e.g., Kill the Snark, Complete the Baking Competition, Deal with the Logging Camp, Meet Willa)
- Level 6: Obtain a method to get past the magical barrier to Yon
Without further ado – the quests!
The Bridge Troll
- When the players arrive to Folly Bridge after crashing in the Fields of Spring they’ll meet Jorgen, a troll that collects tolls for passing the bridge
- If the players kill Jorgen (as opposed to leaving peacefully) there are a few threads that open up:
- Charm, the darkling merchant, now in Vale Crossing will pay for the troll’s eye
- This will be bad news for the town who relies on Jorgen to guard and maintain the bridge and in particular for the mayor Otto Tyrick’s popularity
You Wouldn’t Kill a Unicorn?
- Charm, the darkling merchant mentioned earlier, is also looking for a unicorn horn (to sell to Queen Mab of the Winter Court)
- She knows a unicorn can be found in The Shroudwood (The Wayward Pool)
- Later the players will also learn that the horn is a potential ingredient to make a Leyfi Runestone from Granny Nightshade
The Ultimate Bake-Off
- Ser Del Goldenpetal, a knight of the summer court, is in town and is to serve as the judge for a baking competition to become one of the Summer Queen’s personal bakers
- The two frontrunners are Hansel of The Philosopher’s Scone and Ilse of The Enchanted Oven, both of whom request aid from the party to help secure a win
- Hansel wants the party’s help in sabotaging Ilse
- Ilse asks for rare mushrooms for her planned recipe that can be found at Loomlurch
A Lute if You Please
- Caesar, a bullywug outcast from Downfall, and talented musician had to flee Murkendraw without her prized lute
- She beseeches the party to ask the faeries of the Shroudwood to craft her a new one (found at Little Oak)
An Ill-Fated Rescue
- Elkhorn, a member of the adventuring group Valor’s Call needs help to rescue his leader Strongheart
- Strongheart was captured by goblins after Valor’s Call was defeated in a fight with The League of Malevolence and is currently locked up in The Green Keep
The Goblin Menace
- The players will learn either from the sheriff or the mayor that the goblins of The Green Keep have started a logging operation within the Shroudwood and are asked to put a stop to it
- Options include sabotaging the logging camp, killing all of the goblin loggers, or convincing the Goblin King Great Gark to put a stop to the effort (he can be found at The Green Keep)
To Hunt a Snark
- Through wanted posters in Vale Crossing, or the Grimm, the town’s sheriff, they will learn that Grimm has put out a bounty on a mysterious creature called a snark
- While it’s initially unclear if this creature is even real, it definitely is, and the players will be rewarded for slaying the beast within it’s lair in The Golden Fields
- Later the players will also learn that the Snark’s horn is a potential ingredient to make a Leyfi Runestone (a more moral alternative to the unicorn horn)
We’re All Mad Here
- Hazel Wester at Spring Hollow (in Vale Crossing) will mention a cat-like creature known as Willa the Grimalken that lives within The Shroudwood (The Burrow). If the players have questions, Willa can answer them, for a price
- In addition to having questions answered, the players can potentially have Hazel cured of an unfortunate feymark (whiskers on her face) by dealing with the grimalken
Think of the Children!
- As with the book, Granny Nightshade is employing children as essentially slave labor
- When the party reaches Little Oak, they can work together with Will of the Feywild to rescue them from the hag’s clutches
- Alternatively, Skabatha is also on the lookout for Will and will “reward” the party for his capture
The Trek North
- When the players learn their lost things are in Yon (from Willa or Granny Nightshade), the ultimate goal will be to head up to the land of the Winter Queen
- This will require a Leyfi Runestone, magical “keys” the Winter Court provides to unseelie fey to provide passage back and forth. As mentioned one can be procured from The Green Keep (which was stolen from Sam Bewick of The Woodsman’s Axe) or one created by Granny Nightshade or Sam Bewick
- It’s highly recommended the players leave for Yon prepared for the cold weather environment. Luckily Bailey’s General Store and Fae Fabrics by Iylana and Sebastian (stores within Vale Crossing) both sell clothing to protect against the cold
Longer Term Quests
A few quests given within The Fields of Spring can’t be resolved until later, but of course still want to call them out.
For My Next Trick… The Disappearing Magician!
- Within Underfoot in Vale Crossing, the players will meet Alicia, a magician’s apprentice
- Her mentor the magnificent Criss Silverfield has gone missing and she would be grateful if the party would help to find him
- There’s a few options to figure out where he’s gone (Charm, Willa), but otherwise the party will happen upon him at the Winter Palace in Yon
Iron for Monsters
- Sam Bewick, the owner of The Woodsman’s Axe in Vale Crossing is seeking cold iron, a rare metal that is especially harmful to fey and will craft cold iron weapons for the party if they bring enough
- Cold iron can be found within the mines of Yon
If you’re looking for even more to add on here (definitely not necessary) then I recommend the Thither series by Daniel Kahn. If you decide to use them then make at least the following changes to ensure they fit:
- Cloistered Cove
- Ignore or replace mentions of Squirt, Thither, and Prismeer
- Ignore mentions of Will’s background as an Oni. He still has an “evil past” in that he helped Skabatha (just as a human named Mugan instead). More on this when we get to Little Oak
- The Floating Isles
- Ignore or replace mentions of Thither and Prismeer
- Given the goblins under Great Gark in the Fields of Spring, it can be a nice touch to have the goblins of Tarrytown serve as “good” goblins who will not follow Gark (will need to axe that “The goblins across Prismeer were quite united”)
- Finding Fablerise (This one requires the most work to integrate)
- Ignore or replace mentions of Thither and Prismeer
- Unfortunately the Tale of Strongheart doesn’t fit and would need to be replaced altogether
- Replace Zarak with a new character (and his plot to destroy Strongheart’s book)
- Ignore or replace Lord of the Fairy Rings and Star-Crossed Lovers
Travel in the Fields of Spring
Similar to Murkendraw we will not use “random events” as pure random events. Instead I have categorized them by area within the Fields of Spring and numbered them. As your players travel within an area, go down the list of events as appropriate in numerical order. It is not necessary to use all (or even any) of these events. As an additional touch feel free to roll a d20 every time the players visit a new location. On a 1 – 8 the appropriate Will of the Feywild poster is hung somewhere from the Wanted Poster table in the book, and on 9 – 20 no poster is present.
Note that the following random events have instead been moved directly into another location:
- Grandfather Tree (Merged into Little Oak)
- Owlbear and Chariot (Merged into The Green Keep)
- Pixies (Merged into Little Oak)
The Golden Fields and General Travel
Run this event as written. If you’d prefer a more visual opening then utilize the following:
As you continue you come across a trail of monstrous claw prints on the outskirts of the path. The nearby trees are split open as if they were struck with a great force. Whatever creature left this behind was clearly enormous, as each print spans three feet from heel to toe.
- Players who succeed the Survival check should also be able to surmise that these prints belong to the creature that attacked their balloon
- Given the party’s run-in with the Jabberwock you might also consider allowing a History check here
Run the event mostly as written unless the players meet with the blink dogs. In this case the slain blink dog (named Spades) was killed by the Snark (see “To Hunt a Snark” above and more info in later entries) and thus the dogs instead warn the players of straying near the Snark’s lair instead of Loomlurch. I would also allow the blink dogs to speak Sylvan if your players don’t seem to have another way to speak to them.
They can share the following information to the players:
- The location of the Snark’s lair on the Fields of Spring map (#9)
- The Snark is extremely dangerous and often strikes when its body is invisible to the naked eye. The creature also has the ability to breathe fire like a dragon
- When their companion Spades was killed they were with their pup Otto. They’ve been unable to find Otto and are concerned Otto was taken by the Snark to be eaten later
- Shout-out to u/ZemblanityFalls Fablerise supplement for the idea for Otto the blink dog puppy (and feel free to use his stat block if needed for Otto)
- If the players agree to help find Otto the blink dogs will gift the players with their blessing that takes the shape of paw-shaped charm (see below)
Blessing of the Blink Dogs
Wondrous Item, uncommon
The charm has 3 charges. While holding this charm, you can use a bonus action to expend 1 of its 3 charges to either:
– Magically teleport, along with any equipment you are wearing or carrying, up to 40 feet to an unoccupied space you can see
– Gain advantage on one Perception check of your choice that you make within the next hour
– Gain the ability to understand and read Sylvan for 1 hour
The charm becomes nonmagical when you use the last charge.
We will need to replace all of Winterbow’s lines here. Instead he will share the following:
- Instead of the realm “fading”, he is concerned that The Fields of Spring is in a rapid decline with Oberon missing or dead, the goblins growing in power, and the hag living unchecked in the Shroudwood
- His clan members, at the direction of their leader Kalli, fled to the Summer Court but he is too old to leave the land and was left behind
- If the players seem kind he will offer to provide directions to any of the locations on the Fields of Spring map. If the players are looking for any sort of answers he will offer up a few suggestions – the treants of the Shroudwood, in particular Little Oak, and Willa the Grimalkin in the Burrow (but to be careful with trusting her)
As we’ve removed the Grandfather Tree event we’re going to use this as an alternative opportunity to introduce the players to redcaps (unless they’ve already met them at Loomlurch). Make the following adjustments:
- Use this map (Spring variant) from Czepeku to represent the event
- When Kro’ah returns he is not a goblin, but instead a redcap (chaotic evil). He is also not alone but accompanied by one to three fellow redcaps depending on your party size
- If the redcaps spot the players they will charge the party and try to kill them. Their ultimate goal is to soak their hats in the blood of the players which you should make obvious through vocalizing the redcaps’ bloodlust
- If the redcaps are defeated the players can find one intact redcap cowl (see below) and 50 gp worth of rubies. If the players don’t end up participating in this event you can have the players loot this item from a redcap at Loomlurch. Shout out to Kobold Press’ Tome of Beasts for inspiring the curse on this item.
Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)
This sturdy billowing cap is made of thick red leather. While wearing the cowl you gain advantage on saving throws against being frightened and charmed, as well as disadvantage on Dexterity (Stealth) checks.
Bloodthirsty Rage. As a bonus action you can use the cowl to gain the following benefits, which lasts for 1 minute. The benefits end early if you are knocked unconscious or if your turn ends and you haven’t attacked a hostile creature since your last turn or taken damage since then.
– You have advantage on melee attack rolls against any creature that doesn’t have all its hit points
– You have advantage on Strength checks and Strength saving throws
– Once per round when you reduce a creature to 0 hit points with a melee attack on your turn, you may immediately move up to half your speed and make a melee attack against another creature
You can’t use this property of the cowl again until you finish a long rest.
Curse. This cowl is cursed with the bloodlust of the redcaps, and becoming attuned to it extends the curse to you. Until the curse is broken with remove curse or similar magic, you are unwilling to part with the cowl, keeping it with you at all times.
Starting the day after becoming attuned to the cowl, you must soak the cowl at least once per day in the blood of a humanoid killed that same day. At the end of each day, if the cowl has not been soaked in blood you gain one level of exhaustion which can’t be removed by any means. All levels of exhaustion gained this way are removed immediately when you once again soak the cowl in freshly spilled humanoid blood.
Once the redcaps are dealt with the campestri will be disappointed that its new “friends” went to “sleep” but will share the following information with the party:
- The campestri’s “friends” are redcaps, creatures that started appearing when Granny Nightshade took over Loomlurch. While most people don’t seem to like them because of their obsession with blood, they don’t seem so bad given the nice steaming bath the campestri has been enjoying
- The redcaps said they’re from a garden outside of Loomlurch which sounds very pleasant and enjoyable
- Apparently Granny Nightshade has a toy workshop and she has a large key protruding from her back, almost like she’s a big wind-up toy herself. The campestri has never had a toy before so it sounds like quite the magical place
As written this event is very well fleshed out. We will only need to make a few adjustments:
- If a fight does break out this will be a complete pushover as written. Instead of seven awakened shrubs, reduce this to four and add in two awakened trees (Basic Rules). Assume that the dryad starts the battle with barkskin already active and double her hit points
- You can use this map by Eightfold Paper for the event
- Given the dryad’s good intentions, I would also allow another opportunity for a Persuasion check with advantage during the fight’s latter half if the party engages in combat
- Instead of urging the players to restore Zybilna to power, the dryad instead urges them to deal with Granny Nightshade
- Instead of three sycamore seeds I might only hand out one or two
Arrival in the Fields of Spring
Once you’re ready to begin the party’s entry to The Fields of Spring, start with the following.
After day or so of travel you’ve passed far beyond the fog and swamps of Downfall. The sun hangs high in the sky in an imitation of midday. It’s been hard to see much below you, but this morning the mists part, revealing an endless idyllic landscape of grassland, rolling hills, crystal blue rivers, and a sprawling primeval forest. As you take in the beauty of it all the balloon begins to sputter, a sign that you learned means your stores of swamp gas are nearly empty.
At this point have whichever guide is with the party (Clapperclaw or Morgort) share a few tidbits as well as give the party a chance to talk amongst themselves:
- The Fields of Spring is a land of endless sun, joyful celebrations, and is altogether much more pleasant than Murkendraw
- [Morgort] She believes the land is overseen by Oberon, the Green Lord, a powerful figure almost rivaling the Queens of the Summer and Winter Courts. He is known for his affinity to nature and wildlife
- [Clapperclaw] As a creation of Skabatha he knows that the Green Lord is missing so adjust the above appropriately. He will also share any general details about Granny Nightshade the player’s might ask about (not her weakness)
- It would probably be wise to start bringing down the balloon soon before it runs out of gas
Once the players or their guide bring the balloon down to about 200 feet up, any discussion is interrupted as a number of luminescent moths of incredible size surround the balloon. They seem to consider the party for a moment and then fire arcs of lighting from their wings towards the balloon. It’s time to roll initiative! I used this map to represent the balloon (with a blue sky and clouds as a background).
The combat will consist of a mix of thunder and frost moths (about 2 – 3 of each). These will be variations on the giant dragonfly stat block from the book. For each creature type make the following adjustments.
- Thunder Moths
- Reduce AC to 13
- Add: Immunity to lightning damage
- Add: Charged Body. At the start of each of the thunder moth’s turns, each creature within 5 feet of it must succeed on a DC 12 Dexterity saving throw or take 2 (1d4) lightning damage.
- Replace Bite with: Sharp Feelers. Melee Weapon Attack:+4, Reach 5 ft. Hit: 3 (1d6) piercing damage plus 4 (1d8) lightning damage
- Add Action: Electrified Wings (1/day). Electricity bursts out from the thunder moth in a 10-foot radius. Each creature in that area must succeed on a DC 12 Dexterity saving throw or take 2d8 lightning damage. On a failure of 5 or greater the creature is stunned until the end of its next turn.
- Frost Moths
- Add: Immunity to cold damage
- Replace Bite with: Sharp Feelers. Melee Weapon Attack:+4, Reach 5 ft. Hit: 3 (1d6) piercing damage plus 2 (1d4) cold damage
- Add Action: Icy Wings (1/day). Frosty air is blasted out in a 20-foot radius from the frost moth. Each creature in that area must succeed on a DC 12 Constitution saving throw be unable to take bonus actions or reactions for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.
The Jabberwock Strikes
Once you enter what you believe to be the last round of combat (perhaps only one creature is left, or the ones left are very injured), then play out the following scenario. I would be remiss not to mention that the Hither guide by Eventyr Games was my inspiration for this portion.
As you prepare to finish the creatures off, you hear a terrifying roar. They pause for a second and then scatter to the skies. You finally exhale – the battle seemingly done when a massive lanky dragon-like chimera explodes out from the clouds. It snatches one of the creatures in its maw, rending it in half and then tosses its lifeless body aside. Stricken by the sight, you can’t help but freeze for a moment as you see the monstrous shape is hurtling straight in your direction.
The creature is of course the Jabberwock which is preparing to destroy the party’s swamp gas balloon. Whichever guide is with the party should make it clear that their only hope is to escape.
With this handled, continue to play out the combat round with just the players as all of the enemies have fled or died (there’s no need to roll for the Jabberwock). Each player can take their turn as normal which is hopefully focused on figuring out a way to escape. The player’s guide (Morgort or Clapperclaw) will spend their turn to activate small inflatable emergency balloons that hang along the rim of the wicker basket to somewhat slow the balloon’s fall. At the end of the round the Jabberwock will use its Fiery Gaze to destroy the balloon itself, sending the party and the wicker basket plummeting down towards the ground.
With its goal complete, the Jabberwock will fly off. At this point give your players one final round to help save themselves with spells like feather fall or even just bracing for impact within the basket. Any players who stay within the basket at the point of impact should make a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw to try and roll out, or a DC 13 Strength saving throw to brace. These characters should take 5d6 bludgeoning damage or half as much on a success (instead of the assuredly deadly 20d6 that would have been required without the emergency balloons).
Once the party has landed and gotten their bearings, continue with the next section below.
The surrounding area is a wide expanse flat grassland dotted with the occasional flower bed. The land is exceedingly vibrant and seems to almost sparkle with the sun, a thankful contrast to the swampy duskland of Murkendraw.
Once your players head out (the direction doesn’t matter) it shouldn’t be long before someone accidentally steps on a flower bed. Any player with a passive perception of 11 or higher will hear the sounds coming from below.
As you’re walking you think you hear something and stop. “Hey!” you hear a quiet voice say but can’t quite place the source. “Watch where you’re walking!”.
You look around but don’t see anyone other than your party. “Down here!” it calls again. As you peer down you see you’ve just stepped in a flower bed. Disturbingly between their yellow petals the flowers have small beady black eyes and are frowning up at you. The one speaking has it’s leaves crossed like arms.
As you’ll find out later I’ve cut Amidor and Mudlump from Yon altogether (why is a sunflower and beekeeper in a land of snow and ice?). However, this is the perfect place for them. Play things out as follows:
- As the players realize what they’ve done, Amidor should arrive gallantly to the defense of his fellow flowers, his rapier drawn
- Amidor should quickly realize the situation was a misunderstanding and realize the players are outsiders. He’ll share that they’ll likely want to head to Vale Crossing as that’s where all the big folk live. The quickest way there is over Folly Bridge (which he’ll point out as a stone bridge close by in the distance)
- He’ll offer to guide the party there but in exchange would like help with a little problem. The bridge is guarded by a bridge troll named Jorgen (my stand-in for Mudlump that feels more location appropriate – plus we have plenty of fomorians coming up later)
- As a bachelor, Jorgen has taken up a number of hobbies including fishing from the bridge and beekeeping. It is the latter that concerns Amidor, as Jorgen has captured Pollenella, a queen bee that helps ensure the flowers of the region are pollinated. Amidor would like the players to convince Jorgen to free the bee (or sneakily free her)
- A successful DC 12 insight check will reveal Amidor left out one crucial detail – that Pollenella is in fact Amidor’s beloved
- Amidor explains Jorgen, while large and imposing, is somewhat simple minded and should hopefully be easy to trick. That said, the creature only speaks Giant so Amidor has no idea how to speak with him
If the players don’t engage with Amidor (or even worse, kill him somehow) perhaps allow your players to make a DC 10 Survival check to notice a lot of foot traffic heading in the direction of the bridge. The goal here is to get your players to Vale Crossing, but if they’re obstinate you can show them the map of the Fields of Spring and let them wander around.
Once the players agree to help Amidor they’ll come across a bridge spanning a swift flowing river gorge. Standing squarely in the middle of it blocking the path forward is a giant green creature with a squat, heavyset body and a large fishing pole in one hand. This is Jorgen the bridge troll. You can use this map by Lone Mapper to represent Folly Bridge (and this token for Jorgen).
While your players may have assumptions about Jorgen as a troll, he is in fact not a bad guy. Jorgen is quite important to the town of Vale Crossing as he maintains Folly Bridge (a fact not known to Amidor or the party at this point). It’s quite lonely work though and Jorgen’s hobbies are his way of dealing with it.
As outlined in book Jorgen will have a beehive with him, but wields a fishing pole instead of a stick. Instead of the cyclops stat block use the provided one below for Jorgen.
You Gotta Pay The Troll Toll
When the players first arrive to the bridge, Jorgen’s voice will rumble across to them. “Fa! Jorgen make folly bridge for better cross. You pay?” Keep in mind Jorgen speaks in Giant.
Jorgen is asking for a toll to cross given the hard work he puts into taking care of the bridge. That said, Jorgen doesn’t really understand the value of things traditionally and will accept any payment that he likes the look off (e.g., big things, golden things [they resemble honey], anything related to fishing or beekeeping).
- I suggest allowing for hand or body miming performances if no one has a way of speaking Giant (perhaps adding a Performance check to the mix)
- If the players refuse to pay, they can try to convince him to pass (see the Pollenella options below), but otherwise Jorgen will refuse to let them pass and get violent if they try to force their way past
After the toll is dealt with the players can move on to the topic of Pollenella if they wish. Unlike in the event, in this situation the players will be looking to convince Jorgen to free Pollenella (rather than escape from Jorgen). The players may also choose to not seek to free Pollenella which will upset Amidor but there will be no consequences (unless you had them make an actual fey pact with Amidor).
If the players request Pollenella to be freed Jorgen will scoff at the idea “Give up queen bee!? Jorgen needs queen to make honey mead! Best mead in spring!”
Assuming the players can understand Jorgen, the party can still make DC 13 Persuasion checks to accomplish their goal though. The players have the same options as in the book to convince Jorgen with the following changes:
- Honorable Duel: No changes
- Magical Deception: Remove part about escaping
- Explain Love: Dubhforgail can instead be found in the Green Keep within the Fields of Spring
- Another option is to bribe Jorgen with more things (as per the toll above)
If successful, Amidor will reward the players with the quiver of Ehlonna named in the book for their help.
If a fight breaks out keep in mind the bridge is 20 feet tall (so 2d6 worth of bludgeoning fall damage if anyone were to step or be knocked off). If Jorgen is killed the players can loot the following:
- A single intact troll eye (refer to Underfoot in Vale Crossing for more details)
- The lyre and chain described in the book (change the chain from silver to gold)
- A pole of angling (Xanathar’s Guide to Everything). I recommend using the image from The Griffon Saddlebag’s Angler’s Worldly Fisher. Or alternatively it can be a regular old fishing pole!
Into Vale Crossing
Once the players make their way safety across the bridge Amidor will bid them farewell and head back to the fields. You can disregard the “Mudlump’s Home” section in the book. From here we’ll be ready to play out the town of Vale Crossing which will be the focus of the next article.
I have highlighted some of the resources I used for this portion of the campaign below.
- Fields of Spring Handout by IndieRex
- Buttered Campestri Event Map | “Overgrown Magic Forest” (Spring variant) by Czepeku
- Doomed Dryad Event Map | “Enchanted Woods” (Part 1) by Eightfold Paper
- Swamp Gas Balloon Map by Unknown
- Folly Bridge Map | “Stone Bridge” by Lone Mapper
- Jorgen, the Bridge Troll token by IndieRex
- Location Handouts | Painting Thither series by tzlynart
- Fields of Spring Background Music
- Location Specific Music
- The Jabberwock | “Icewind Dale RotfM: Destroyer’s Light” by MAB Music TTRPG
- Combat Music
- Fighting the Bridge Troll | “Overlord Wrath” from Overlord II
I’m very excited for the next entry which will cover the entirely homebrew town of Vale Crossing. As a sneak preview see below for the town map!
As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any comments, questions, or suggestions and… see you in the Feywild!