Part XII: The Fields of Spring (Loomlurch)

The Wild Beyond the Witchlight: Reimagined

Welcome to Part 12 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!

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Introduction

As the party ventures deeper into The Shroudwood they will eventually find themselves at Loomlurch, the old hunting lodge of Oberon the Green Lord that has since been co-opted by the hag Skabatha Nightshade. There are a few potential ways the party may be approaching here:

  • They traveled from Little Oak and have partnered with the Getaway Gang to free the children in Skabatha’s workshop (see Part 11 for more on this).
    • In this case it’s likely the group may be seeking to execute Will’s plan (see The Getaway Plan below)
  • They have heard (or think) that Skabatha can help them to reach Yon
    • In this case, events may play out more peacefully, with a simple audience and discussion with Skabatha
  • They simply have stumbled into it. Who knows how this might end up!
    • If the players get into trouble (such as activating the scarecrows in the garden) without knowing what they’re walking into, consider having the Getaway Gang call them into the forest and lead them back to Little Oak
Art by tzlynart

The Getaway Plan

In the Little Oak section of the book Will lays out a fairly simple plan to free the children. It doesn’t really delve into how you as a DM might run it and also doesn’t account for all of the children either.

If the party agrees to help the Getaway Gang to rescue the children at Loomlurch then Will should share his plan to do so. I recommend to replace Will’s plan with the following. He should still sketch things out with a stick and dirt to demonstrate.

1) Scouting Mission. If the party hasn’t already met with Skabatha, the gang will recommend the party head to the goblin market (area L2) posing as travelers to arrange a meeting with Skabatha in the parlor. While Will is familiar with the layout, it’s been a long time, so there’s valuable intel to be had here too. If they have already met with her then he’ll likely suggest the “Turn in Will” plan below as well.

1B) [Optional] Turn in Will. If the players are actively seeking a Leyfi Runestone from the hag then during the meeting with Skabatha they can “turn in” Will using one of two following options so that she will agree to craft the runestone before the children are freed. The party will still need a unicorn or snark horn though of course to complete the runestone.

A) Give up Will to Granny Nightshade, but plan to rescue him along with everyone else during the escape (he will almost certainly be locked up in the kitchen grate). In this case someone else from the Getaway Gang will play Will’s role during the escape plan.

B) Create a fake Will of the Feywild for the party to turn in. If a fake will is presented to Skabatha she will make an Insight check. Determine the DC for her based on how good of a disguise it is. If the players pull off a distraction at the same time then you can potentially have her roll with disadvantage.
– DC 10: A poor disguise (e.g., someone just dressed as Will)
– DC 12: A decent disguise (e.g., a look-a-like)
– DC 14: A good disguise (e.g., the disguise self spell)
– DC 16: A great disguise (e.g., disguise self but with some attempt to mitigate the weakness where the true body can be felt through the illusion)
– DC 18: An amazing disguise

2) The Distraction. Bobi, Sloane, Zennor, and Star will creep through the woods to the west of the tree and enter the sight of the screaming scarecrows in area L5. This will cause the scarecrows to scream and cause Granny Nightshade to excuse herself from the meeting to investigate. Once she leaves have your players roll to act in initiative order.

  • The tin soldiers from areas L1 and L7 will also depart to investigate the garden

3) Moving into Position. With Skabatha gone it’s time to free the children. As soon as the players attempt to leave the parlor though it will cause the mimics to attack which will need to be dealt with.

  • By default Skabatha will return back from the garden after 1 minute (10 rounds) of Bobi, Sloane, and Zennor distracting her by throwing rocks
  • If the players saved Lamorna and/or freed Elidon the unicorns will arrive in the garden to delay Granny Nightshade. This will cause her to not return for 3 minutes (30 rounds) instead

4) The Breakout. From here it will be up to the party to free the children. Will can share that the children are typically in the workshop (area L4) and textile mill (area L12). At this point in the plan Will says he will climb into the textile mill (area L12) to save the children there while the party rescues the ones from the workshop (area L4). He warns the players to be careful of the hobs in the workshop.

  • 4A) The party will first free the children in the workshop (area L4)
    • Philomena will want to free Oink as well and will protest leaving. She can either be convinced to leave with a DC 12 persuasion check or the party can attempt to get a message to the rest of the Getaway Gang to release the pigs from their pen
    • Sung will share the locations of their friends in the dormitory (area L8), sewing room (area L9), and kitchen (area L13). Naal will proudly present his bar of soap at the mention of the kitchen (but will still want a simple trade for it)
    • The hobs in the workshop will attempt to make a run for it to the Goblin Market to alert Chucklehead
      • If successful, the party will have to deal with the goblins. However Chucklehead can be convinced to turn a blind eye rather easily (a DC 12 Persuasion check) as he would like to see Mishka freed and the party (not the goblins) would be at fault
  • 4B) In the dormitory (area L8), the party can free Brottor and Pud but will need to get past the tin solider guards either through a distraction or defeating them in battle.
    • Pud will request the party cure Brottor before they leave or Brottor might not be able to make it. If the players have no way of healing Brottor, Pud will raise the idea of using a hummingbrella mushroom from the kitchen
  • 4C) In the sewing room (area L9) the players will need to deal with Pincushion and the rug of smothering in order to free the children there. Keep in mind that Pincushion is easily deceived
  • 4D) On the way to the kitchen (area L13) in area L10 the party will be confronted by Sowpig who can potentially be convinced to step aside. If the group engages with Sowpig you can use the stat block I created in Part 4B. She will also likely call for help
    • Once in the kitchen the party will need to be sneaky or fight Cradefall before freeing Mishka (and Will if he is here as well).
    • In parallel to all of this, the children in the textile mill will be freed by Will as per the plan

5) The Escape. Once the children are set free, everyone will run back to Little Oak. However if the party does not free all of the children in time then they will be confronted by Granny Nightshade (preferably in the kitchen) and have to do battle. You may also choose to force a battle here if you think it would be a more satisfying conclusion for your group

  • If Will of the Feywild is free he will assist in the combat. The unicorns (if present) and the rest of the Getaway Gang will escort the children out from Loomlurch during the confrontation
  • If defeat looks likely the hag will seek to flee when she is low on health via plane shift or her rocking horse

Loomlurch

In this section I will only call out changes (otherwise run the book as is). Unlike the book, if Bavlorna fled from her cottage, she did not escape here.

L1. Root Bridges

As the players approach Loomlurch I combined the early descriptions to give better context to what they see.

The forest is at its darkest here. Up ahead, a colossal dead oak lies on its side. Three living trees grow naturally out of its fallen remains. Their shapes resemble towers, with candlelit windows twinkling in the gloom and wooden balconies encircling gnarled branches. On one side of the fallen tree, firelight spills from a pair of quaint storefront windows, illuminating a clearing filled with merchant stalls. A gnarled bridge formed by tangled tree roots spans a rocky, dried-up riverbed leading in that direction. A similar bridge to the west leads directly into the oak itself and seems to be guarded by two small constructs in the shape of soldiers.

Additionally, make the following changes:

  • Add two tin soldiers guarding the entrance to area L3 here. Also for all of the tin soldier at Loomlurch I would recommend using u/Phaerlax’s alternative statblock for them (link) but retain the multiattack ability to provide a more interesting foe
  • The goblins will not let uninvited members enter into area L3 but say they’re welcome to go to the market which is open to the public

L2. Goblin Market

Add the following to the end of the description. The creatures are Hobs, essentially non-violent laborers the goblins use for their bidding. There should be 3 – 5 wandering the market and you can use the goblin stat block (Basic Rules) to represent them (but remove the Scimitar and Shortbow actions).

Every so often, even smaller goblin-like creatures, but with pink skin, seem to carry supplies back and forth to the market. They look particularly downtrodden.

Hobs are cowardly as a result of the poor treatment they receive from their goblin masters. They can be easy to befriend though as a result, such as through a gift of food

Chucklehead

Unlike the book, Chucklehead and the market are representatives from the Green Keep and King Great Gark and are not in Skabatha’s employ. Chucklehead can share the additional information:

  • Loomlurch is Skabatha’s workshop. While Skabatha is a hag, Great Gark puts up with her as she is masterful at keeping a successfully running ship. She wastes a lot of time with making toys, but also constructs tin solders which Gark is interested in. The goblin king has provided her with hobs to help run the workshop
    • While Chucklehead would never share this, Gark is planning to supplement his army of goblins with Skabatha’s tin soldiers to eventually take over the rest of the Fields of Spring including Vale Crossing
  • If provided a good reason, Chucklehead will arrange for a meeting with Skabatha in the parlor (L3)
  • The goblin boss will chuckle if an audience is requested with Great Gark and recommends the party go to the Green Keep and ask themselves

Merchant Stalls

To make the market more interesting I recommend the following changes:

  • Only the red stall sells candy. I have adjusted the Candy Treats table slightly (see below) to reduce the negative impacts (most only last 10 minutes instead of an hour)
  • The blue stall seems to carry a full spectrum of low-value items, trinkets, common household goods, and some toys, all packed on huge shelves. Roll on the feywild trinkets table to see what the goblin has available
  • The green stall is manned by a goblin that seems more savvy than most of the other goblins here and appears to have the most valuable wares. The goblin has one of each of the following available for sale, but is not interested in coin. Instead only trades or fey bargains will suffice

Cabbage Warhead
Wondrous item, rare

As an action, Cabbage Warhead can be thrown at a creature of Large size or smaller up to 60 feet away. When thrown, roll a d8. On a 1, the cabbage instead targets the creature nearest to you.

The target must make a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw. On a successful saving throw, the cabbage drops harmlessly to the ground and can be picked up by anyone and used again.

On a failed saving throw, the Cabbage Warhead wraps itself around the head of the creature and begins devouring it, immediately blinding the creature and dealing 3d8 piercing damage. The affected creature is blinded and takes additional 3d8 piercing damage at the end of each of its turns until the Cabbage is removed.

A creature affected by the cabbage or any creature within 5 feet of them can use their action to make a DC 13 Strength ability check, removing and destroying the cabbage on a success.

Boblin’s Blackjack
Weapon (club), rare (requires attunement)

You gain a +1 bonus to Attack and Damage Rolls made with this Weapon.

If you score a critical hit with this weapon, the target has to make a DC 14 Constitution Saving throw, becoming stunned and gaining disadvantage on saving throws against being charmed until the end of their next turn on a failure.

Candy Treats

d8  Effect
1Your footfalls emit musical notes that can be heard out to a range of 30 feet for 10 minutes. You have disadvantage on Stealth rolls during this period.
2Eating the candy causes you to foam at the mouth, making it difficult (but not impossible) for you to speak for 10 minutes
3Bark covers your skin and roots sprout from your feet. You gain +1 to AC for 10 minutes
4Your head swells to twice its normal size for 10 minutes
5You shrink, as though affected by the reduce effect of an enlarge/reduce spell for 10 minutes
6Fireflies are drawn to you and form a persistent cloud around you, shedding bright light in a 5-foot radius and dim light for an additional 5 feet for 10 minutes
7You grow, as though affected by the enlarge effect of an enlarge/reduce spell for 10 minutes
8You are targeted by a polymorph spell and automatically fail the saving throw against it. The new form is a bunny and it lasts for 1 hour.

L3. Parlor

Make the following adjustments here:

  • Add two tin soldiers guarding the room
  • Cradlefall should not be present here (Cradefall is in the kitchen)

Bargaining with Skabatha

If the players parlay with Granny Nightshade they should meet in the parlor as per the book for tea. Skabatha will share the following information:

  • Like Bavlorna she has no qualms with admitting that she steals from the carnival. Unlike Bavlorna though she will be more helpful. If the players describe their lost things she will note that they were already sent on north to Queen Mab in Yon. Of course there’s a magical barrier protecting Yon so it would be quite difficult for the players to go and retrieve them.
  • If the players are determined to get to Yon, the hag will say that it is possible she could help them… for a price. The unseelie fey use magical Leyfi Runestones to pass through the barrier. Skabatha believes the shield was erected by her sister Endelyn, and Skabatha is confident she can make a stone herself as she is very familiar with her sister’s machinations and has made one in the past (this was for Tasha but she will not share that tidbit).
    • She will ask for the following in exchange for the Leyfi Runestone:
      • A unicorn horn as the key ingredient to make the stone. Unicorns make their home here in the Shroudwood (if the players ask about using a Snark Horn instead she will begrudgingly use that for the recipe, but won’t bring up the idea herself)
      • For the party to capture the brigand Will of the Feywild. She’s sure he’s hiding somewhere in the forest.
    • If the players inquire about one of the rewards from the posters (which are almost all bad deals), she will offer to throw one in as well. Unlike the book she doesn’t require the poster itself.
    • If the players ask about Will she will share honestly that he used to work for her in kidnapping children for her workshop (she will neglect to mention that he did so as a slave and had little choice in it). She will also tell how she casted a ritual to make Will age more slowly so he could be of use to her for longer. He unfortunately escaped and has been a nuisance ever since.
  • If the party accepted the deal to destroy Skabatha’s mirror and tell her about it instead of actually destroying the mirror, Skabatha will offer to break the pact for them (and will successfully do so).
    • Granny Nightshade will be adamant she is not plotting against Bavlorna. Instead she is convinced Bavlorna was tricked into believing this made-up plot by her sister Endelyn despite whatever the party says.
    • A successful DC 12 Insight check will reveal that while Skabatha clearly has no strong love for Bavlorna, that she is genuine in believing this is all Endelyn’s fault
  • On the note of Endelyn, Skabatha will happily discuss her vile sister who lives in Yon. She describes Endelyn as a paranoid loon obsessed with immortality and the vile theatre plays she puts on. She lives in Motherhorn, an amphitheater on top of the mountain peak of the same name and adjacent to the Winter Palace.
    • Skabatha believes that Endelyn is plotting against her but has an idea. If the party could sabotage one of her plays it would almost certainly be enough of a mental strain to distract Endelyn from any sort of plots against Granny Nightshade. The party will almost certainly be passing through anyway if they’re heading to meet Queen Mab.
    • If the players agree, she will create a fey pact with them for something of equivalent value (but not the Leyfi Runestone – she only wants Will for that one).
  • If asked about Elidon, Skabatha will simply say she indeed has a wonderful pet unicorn that was gifted by her sister (this is referring to Tasha, but Skabatha will not share which sister gifted it).
    • If asked if that unicorn’s horn could be used for the Leyfi Runestone, she will note that she already used it for another stone that she already gave away (as mentioned before this was for Tasha, but she won’t reveal this)
  • If the players inquire about the troll eye (such as if they were asked to get one by Charm in Vale Crossing), then Skabatha will admit she is indeed searching for one. She intends to modify it into a way to root out Will of the Feywild. If the players have the eye and seek to trade with her directly she will happily do so (for something equivalent to 200 gp as she doesn’t deal in money or perhaps for something else like freeing Raxivort from Nib’s Cave).

If Skabatha is overpowered or defeated in battle she will share that she knows the recipe to create a Leyfi Runestone which would allow the party to pass through the barrier to Yon and offer to create it in exchange for just the unicorn horn ingredient required (no Will of the Feywild required!).

L4. Workshop

As we removed Squirt from Little Oak, I have also taken away the boggles as they don’t serve a purpose. Instead there are three Hobs here working. As mentioned above, if the players break in they will attempt to escape and warn Chucklehead.

L5. Garden

My changes for this area include:

  • I recommend adding three hobs cultivating the plant beds. If they catch the party trespassing, they will make a run for the scarecrows to sound the alarm. If the scarecrows are destroyed they will instead to look to run to the goblin market.
  • In terms of the plants themselves, I would suggest to limit how many players get the special mushrooms (versus normal ones). Keep in mind the Hummingbrella is what Ilse is looking for back at The Enchanted Oven in Vale Crossing
  • For the pumpkin patch, go ahead and remove the snakes. This area is already very close to the scarecrows. Instead with a successful DC 14 Nature check a player can harvest 2d6 servings of pumpkin seeds here (see Spring Hollow from Vale Crossing for details)

L6. Rocking Horse

Six months ago Tasha came to Skabatha with an offer. She would gift her sister an obedient rocking horse out of a unicorn, in exchange for Skabatha using it’s unicorn horn to create Tasha a Leyfi Runestone. A deal was struck and Skabatha received the now hornless Elidon.

As a result, unfortunately Elidon’s horn is permanently gone. However he can instead be rescued from being a rocking horse with a dispel magic, remove curse, or greater restoration spell and will provide a charm of heroism in addition to other aid laid out in the book.

If Elidon is rescued while the party is actively freeing the children from Loomlurch he will immediately go to distract Granny Nightshade in the garden (see the Getaway Plan section above). I would avoid having him join the party though as to not bog things down.

L7. Tin Soldier Barracks

The only change is that Cradefall is not presently here.

L8. Workhouse Dormitory

No changes.

L9. Sewing Room

To increase the challenge here you may choose to add 1 – 2 additional tin soldiers here.

L10. Cupboards

Regardless of whether she was defeated in Chapter 1, Sowpig will be here (use the stat block provided back during the Hall of Illusions in the Witchlight Carnival). If there is a disturbance (such the party trying to free the children) then Sowping will emerge from her cocoon. She should recognize the party and may or may not try to stop them. As per the book she enjoys dark and upsetting jokes.

The unicorn horn is not here as well. As it’s become obvious now, the only unicorn horns at play in the reimagining are Elidon’s (already used by Skabatha for Tasha) and potentially Lamorna’s if stolen.

L11. Family Tree

Add the following to the end of the description as we have moved the mirror here from the study. The players may have been tasked with destroying it by Bavlorna, and if they do so then they will fulfill their bargain. However, if they are caught in the act this will be seen by Skabatha as part of Endelyn’s plots against her and she will seek to have the players killed.

A tall oval mirror in a wooden frame is built into a bookcase on one of the walls.

When the characters examine the portraits:

  • Show the handouts of the other hags as the players view their portraits. This will make showing Tasha’s portrait handout less suspicious
  • When showing Tasha’s hand-out, I suggest using the one below as it doesn’t have the chicken foot and thus is less obvious. You might also want to put her portrait in the middle so it’s not a dramatic finish
    • Unlike the book do not call out the similarities to the mannequin outside of the Hall of Illusions as this will give things away. If players make the connection themselves then fair enough though!

L12. Textile Mill

As with the workshop I’ve removed the boggles here given we are not using Squirt.

L13. Kitchen

As mentioned previously, Cradlefall should be here sleeping. As a result, players will need to sneak past his Passive Perception of 14 if being stealthy. If the party battles Skabatha here then the dragon will aid her.

Elkhorn and his items are not here as he is instead in Vale Crossing. I felt this rescue was unnecessary as the main plot hook here is already to rescue the children.As a result the kitchen cell is empty, unless you turn in Will of the Feywild (in which case he would be here). A similar issue is at play in the Green Keep though where Strongheart is locked up. Make sure to remove Elkhorn’s question about potatoes.

If the players search the room, keep in mind the hummingbrella mushroom is what Ilse from The Enchanted Oven in Vale Crossing is searching for.

Battling Skabatha

If you believe your party is likely to fight the hag, I recommend using the alternative statblock for her from the Thither Guide from Eventyr Games. That said there’s a lot of options to circumvent a battle and those are more interesting in my opinion. If a fight does take place it should almost certainly be here in the kitchen so the party can take advantage of the oven for the battle (which is also very thematic).

If Skabatha is defeated the following can be found on her person. That said, I might have her plane shift to escape as a dramatic exit (even if the party successfully loots her).

  • The recipe for crafting a Leyfi Runestone if not already found elsewhere. See area L14 for details.
  • The ring of three iron keys

L14. Study

Changes here include:

  • The mirror has been moved to area L11 where the party is more likely to encounter it
  • If the players read Tales from the Gloaming Court you can include select general information about Yon
  • The recipe for crafting a Leyfi Runestone can be found here in the desk if not already found elsewhere. If the players have met Sam Bewick at the Woodman’s Axe in Underfoot they should be able to discern that a man of his ilk could likely craft this too. The recipe calls for a slab of stone, azurite, a unicorn horn, and depicts how to draw and infuse the appropriate magical rune required.
    • While the recipe calls for a unicorn horn, Sam will be able to share that a snark’s horn could be easily substituted
    • [Optional] You might also choose to allow a player with proficiency in Jeweler’s Tools, Smith’s Tools, and/or Tinkerer’s Tools to attempt to craft the stone if they have all the appropriate ingredients. This would require a successful DC 20 Intelligence check (adding the tool proficiency bonus). One horn will be enough materials for three attempts (but only one successful creation).

L15. Redcap Patch

No changes.

L16. Granny Nightshade’s Bedroom

No changes. Some DMs may find it fun to have an adventure including the dollhouse (example), but this is completely at your discretion.

L17. Aviary

Instead of the Hither carving, it will state “Murkendraw”. We will also be changing the letters, with the third clearly having been written by Skabatha but not yet sent.

Sister,

I have not heard of any plots by Endelyn against you. Perhaps the fumes from your workshop are getting to your head again.

Instead of worrying about Endelyn, what are you doing about the jabberwock that lairs in the palace and hunts in your forest? No matter what Endelyn says, that burbling beast of a dragon is a threat to our coven and our three realms. How Titania managed to befriend it, and why our sister freed it, I’ll never know! Maybe we should ask the summer queen—ha ha.

Much love,

Lorna

Lovely Skab,

What do you know about what our dear sister is doing in that swamp of hers? I have gazed into the Orrery of Tragedies, and it is has revealed to me that she is up to no good. Something to do with royalty and… frogs? I fear she may be looking to make a move against us. Since you are closer I beseech you to keep a close eye on her movements.

I heard our sister recently gave you a unicorn horn. As you know Queen Mab is always looking for more. If I recall that Elidon’s mate still dwells in your forest. You could kill Lamorna and take her horn for the Queen of the Winter Court—assuming, of course, you’re not too busy making toys.

Your darling sister,

End

My Dear End,

Do not bother with me business about Lorna and unicorn horns. I can only assume you intend to waste it as a prop in one of your plays. Instead you should turn your mind to what the jabberwock will do after it gets tired of prowling the forest and turns its fiery gaze elsewhere – perhaps north? Gods’ bodkins, that thing gives me nightmares!

I have had some time to think and my greater concern is what our sister is up to playing with the fey courts. She has endangered all of this with freeing the jabberwock business, is not a part of our Hourglass Coven, and has not explained her plans to us. What does your orrery tell you?

Your beloved sister,

Skab

Resources

I have highlighted some of the resources I used for this portion of the campaign below.

Art

Music

What’s Next?

Loomlurch concludes our time in The Shroudwood. Next we’ll be venturing south to The Golden Fields which includes Nib’s Cave and two new locations (The Snark’s Lair and The Green Keep). As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any comments, questions, or suggestions and… see you in the Feywild!

One thought on “Part XII: The Fields of Spring (Loomlurch)

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