Title: Shargrailar’s Resurgence
“Shargrailar’s Resurgence” is a Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition adventure designed for four to six characters of levels 8-12. In this adventure, the heroes must thwart the Cult of the Dragon’s latest scheme, led by Severin Silrajin, to resurrect the powerful dracolich Shargrailar and bring about the Draconic Apocalypse. The players will face dangerous foes, explore ancient ruins, and unravel the secrets of an age-old prophecy.
Severin Silrajin, the ambitious leader of the Cult of the Dragon, has uncovered an ancient prophecy which foretells the return of Shargrailar, a fearsome dracolich who once terrorized the lands of Faerûn. Believing that the resurrection of Shargrailar will grant the cult unparalleled power and hasten the Draconic Apocalypse, Severin has mobilized the cult’s resources in a bid to locate Shargrailar’s phylactery and the means to restore the mighty dracolich to life.
- A prominent sage who has been researching the Cult of the Dragon’s activities contacts the heroes, imploring them to investigate the cult’s interest in ancient ruins located in the treacherous Stonelands.
- The heroes are approached by a member of the Harpers or the Emerald Enclave, who have intercepted messages hinting at the cult’s plans and require a capable group to thwart Severin’s ambitions.
- The players hear rumors of valuable treasures hidden within the ancient ruins, guarded by deadly traps and powerful magic.
Chapter 1: The Trail of the Cult
The heroes must follow the trail of the Cult of the Dragon, gathering information about their plans and locating the ancient ruins where the resurrection is to take place. Along the way, the party will face cultists, treacherous terrain, and potentially forge alliances with other factions interested in stopping Severin’s plans.
Chapter 2: The Depths of Despair
The ancient ruins are revealed to be the long-lost Tomb of the Dracolich, where Shargrailar was laid to rest. The heroes must delve into the depths of the tomb, navigating deadly traps, solving cryptic puzzles, and battling the cult’s guardians to reach the phylactery before the cult does.
Chapter 3: The Shadow of the Dracolich
As the heroes uncover the secrets of the tomb, they learn about the dark rituals required to resurrect Shargrailar. With this knowledge, they must prevent the Cult of the Dragon from completing the rituals and confront Severin Silrajin himself in a climactic battle.
Chapter 4: The Final Gambit
In the adventure’s final chapter, the heroes must race against time to destroy Shargrailar’s phylactery and defeat the emerging dracolich. The outcome of this conflict will determine the fate of Faerûn, and whether the Draconic Apocalypse comes to pass or is averted by the heroes’ valor.
This adventure can be adapted to suit various Forgotten Realms settings, and offers numerous opportunities for role-playing, combat, and exploration. The players will face a challenging and thrilling campaign as they combat the Cult of the Dragon and strive to save the world from the terrifying power of Shargrailar.
Chapter 1: The Trail of the Cult
In this chapter, the heroes will follow the trail of the Cult of the Dragon, gathering information about their plans and locating the ancient ruins where the resurrection is to take place. The heroes will need to overcome various encounters and interact with key NPCs to progress.
Encounter 1: Cultist Ambush
As the heroes make their way through the wilderness, they are ambushed by a group of Cult of the Dragon members who have been alerted to their presence. The cultists consist of a mix of low-level spellcasters, fighters, and dragonborn, all wearing the cult’s purple robes. The players must defeat the cultists in order to continue on their path.
Encounter 2: Wyvern Nest
While traversing the treacherous terrain of the Stonelands, the heroes stumble upon a wyvern nest. The wyverns are aggressive and will attack the party to protect their eggs. The heroes must either defeat the wyverns or find a way to bypass the nest without disturbing the creatures.
Encounter 3: The Stone Giant’s Riddle
The heroes encounter a stone giant named Thrummok, who guards the entrance to the valley leading to the ancient ruins. Thrummok is not hostile, but he will only allow the heroes to pass if they can solve his riddle. If the players answer correctly, Thrummok will provide them with additional information about the dangers ahead.
Encounter 4: Cultist Outpost
Before reaching the ancient ruins, the heroes discover a Cult of the Dragon outpost. The cultists are excavating and studying the surrounding area, attempting to find clues to the Tomb of the Dracolich’s entrance. The heroes can either infiltrate the outpost or launch a direct assault to gain information about the cult’s activities.
- Ariana Swiftfoot: A Harper agent disguised as a traveling merchant. Ariana can provide the heroes with crucial information about the Cult of the Dragon’s movements and their interest in the ancient ruins. She may also have useful supplies and equipment for sale.
- Tarkon Blackscale: A dragonborn lieutenant of the Cult of the Dragon who leads the outpost. Tarkon is a cunning and resourceful enemy, who will attempt to escape and warn Severin Silrajin if the heroes attack the outpost. If captured, Tarkon may reveal valuable information about the cult’s plans in exchange for his life.
- Yoreth the Wise: An elderly sage who has been researching the Cult of the Dragon and Shargrailar’s legend. Yoreth has deciphered part of the prophecy and believes the heroes are the key to stopping the resurrection. He can provide vital information and guidance throughout the adventure.
- Elira Moonshadow: An elven scout from the Emerald Enclave who has been tracking the cult’s activities in the Stonelands. She can assist the heroes in navigating the dangerous terrain and may be willing to join the party if their goals align.
By overcoming the various encounters and interacting with key NPCs, the heroes will gain valuable information about the Cult of the Dragon’s plans and the location of the ancient ruins. This will set the stage for the heroes to delve into the depths of the Tomb of the Dracolich in Chapter 2.
The Stone Giant’s Riddle:
Thrummok, the stone giant, stands tall and imposing at the entrance of the valley leading to the ancient ruins. When the heroes approach him, he speaks in a deep, rumbling voice:
“I am the guardian of this pass, and only those who can solve my riddle may continue. Listen carefully, for I shall ask you only once:
I am not alive, but I can grow; I don’t have lungs, but I need air; I don’t have a mouth, but water kills me.
What am I?”
The answer to Thrummok’s riddle is “fire.” If the heroes answer correctly, the stone giant will nod approvingly and step aside, allowing them to pass. Thrummok may also offer additional information about the dangers that lie ahead, warning the heroes of the treacherous terrain and the Cult of the Dragon’s presence in the ancient ruins.
If the heroes fail to solve the riddle, Thrummok will not allow them to pass and may become hostile if they try to force their way through. The heroes will need to find another way to reach the ancient ruins or try to persuade the giant to let them pass with a successful Charisma (Persuasion) check, though the DC for this check should be relatively high due to the importance of Thrummok’s task.
Chapter 2: The Depths of Despair
In this chapter, the heroes delve into the ancient ruins, now revealed as the long-lost Tomb of the Dracolich, where Shargrailar was laid to rest. The heroes must navigate deadly traps, solve cryptic puzzles, and battle the tomb’s guardians to reach the phylactery before the cult does.
Encounter 1: The Guardian Statues
Upon entering the tomb, the heroes are faced with a large chamber lined with seemingly innocuous statues of dragons. However, when the heroes attempt to pass through, the statues come to life and attack. The players must defeat these animated dragon statues or find a way to deactivate them in order to proceed.
Encounter 2: The Hall of Traps
The heroes come across a long hallway filled with a variety of traps, including pressure plates, swinging blades, and magical wards. The heroes must use their skills, abilities, and teamwork to safely navigate this treacherous passage. Some traps may be disarmed or bypassed, while others may require creative problem-solving to overcome.
Encounter 3: The Crypt of Riddles
In this chamber, the heroes find a series of inscriptions on the walls that serve as riddles, the answers to which are necessary to unlock a hidden door leading to the inner sanctum of the tomb. The heroes must solve these riddles or find an alternative means to access the hidden passage.
Encounter 4: The Lich’s Servants
As the heroes draw closer to the phylactery, they encounter a group of powerful undead creatures, including wights and wraiths, which were once loyal servants of Shargrailar. These undead foes will do everything in their power to protect their master’s resting place and prevent the heroes from reaching the phylactery.
- Lorakas the Shadowed: A long-dead wizard whose spirit haunts the tomb. Lorakas was once a member of the Cult of the Dragon but turned against them when he realized the full extent of their nefarious plans. His spirit now seeks redemption and may offer guidance or assistance to the heroes, though he may also be somewhat untrustworthy due to his past affiliations.
- Kaela Moonwhisper: A young elven rogue who became trapped in the tomb while seeking treasure. Kaela can provide valuable information about the tomb’s layout and the challenges the heroes will face. If the heroes assist her in escaping, she may offer her services as an ally for the remainder of the adventure.
- Valdor the Revenant: A once-noble paladin who was slain by Shargrailar and now seeks vengeance as a revenant. Valdor has a wealth of knowledge about the tomb and may provide the heroes with crucial information, though his single-minded pursuit of revenge may cause him to be reckless and endanger the party.
By overcoming these encounters and interacting with the key NPCs, the heroes will make their way through the treacherous Tomb of the Dracolich, drawing ever closer to the phylactery and the climactic confrontation with Severin Silrajin and his cultist followers. As they progress, they will uncover more about the dark rituals required to resurrect Shargrailar, setting the stage for the events of Chapter 3.
Chapter 3: The Shadow of the Dracolich
In this chapter, the heroes uncover the secrets of the tomb and learn about the dark rituals required to resurrect Shargrailar. Armed with this knowledge, they must prevent the Cult of the Dragon from completing the rituals and confront Severin Silrajin himself in a climactic battle.
Encounter 1: Ritual Chamber Ambush
As the heroes approach the ritual chamber, they find that the Cult of the Dragon is already there, preparing the dark rituals necessary to resurrect Shargrailar. The cultists, led by a powerful spellcaster, attempt to stall the heroes while the rituals continue. The heroes must defeat the cultists and disrupt the rituals before they are completed.
Encounter 2: Severin Silrajin’s Trap
After stopping the initial ritual, the heroes discover that Severin Silrajin has set a trap for them. As they investigate the chamber further, they trigger a glyph of warding or another powerful magical trap, which summons a group of powerful monsters, such as dragonkin or even a dracolich servant, to keep the heroes occupied while Severin attempts to complete the ritual himself.
Encounter 3: Confronting Severin Silrajin
In the heart of the tomb, the heroes face off against Severin Silrajin, the ambitious leader of the Cult of the Dragon. Severin is a powerful spellcaster and is accompanied by his elite bodyguards, including Tarkon Blackscale (if he escaped earlier in the adventure). The heroes must defeat Severin and his minions to prevent Shargrailar’s resurrection.
Encounter 4: The Partially Resurrected Dracolich
Although the heroes have defeated Severin, the dark rituals have partially succeeded, and Shargrailar has begun to awaken. The heroes must battle the partially resurrected dracolich while it is still weak, preventing it from reaching its full power and escaping the tomb.
- Serris Moonshadow: A member of the Emerald Enclave who has infiltrated the Cult of the Dragon. Serris can provide the heroes with information about Severin’s plan and the rituals required to resurrect Shargrailar. If the heroes can convince her of their intentions, she may switch sides and aid them in their fight against the cult.
- Mordekai the Exiled: A former member of the Cult of the Dragon who has become disillusioned with the organization and its goals. Mordekai can reveal weaknesses in the cult’s defenses and may offer to help the heroes in exchange for protection from Severin’s retribution.
- Lady Alindra: A powerful cleric of Bahamut who has been tracking the Cult of the Dragon’s activities. Lady Alindra can provide the heroes with valuable support in the form of healing and divine magic. She may also be able to provide guidance on how to permanently defeat Shargrailar.
By overcoming these encounters and interacting with the key NPCs, the heroes will have prevented the resurrection of Shargrailar and dealt a significant blow to the Cult of the Dragon. However, the heroes must still destroy Shargrailar’s phylactery and deal with any remaining cultists in the final chapter of the adventure, setting the stage for the ultimate showdown in Chapter 4.
Chapter 4: The Phylactery’s Destruction
In this final chapter, the heroes must locate and destroy Shargrailar’s phylactery, ensuring that the dracolich can never be resurrected again. They must also deal with any remaining cultists and escape the collapsing tomb.
Encounter 1: The Phylactery’s Guardians
The phylactery is hidden in a secret chamber deep within the Tomb of the Dracolich, guarded by powerful undead creatures and constructs. The heroes must defeat these guardians, which may include undead dragons, bone golems, and spectral guardians, in order to reach the phylactery.
Encounter 2: The Phylactery’s Puzzle
The phylactery is encased within a magical barrier that requires solving a complex puzzle to dispel. The puzzle may involve manipulating arcane runes, aligning magical crystals, or even answering riddles posed by the spirits of long-dead cultists. The heroes must work together to solve the puzzle and gain access to the phylactery.
Encounter 3: Destroying the Phylactery
Once the heroes have access to the phylactery, they must find a way to destroy it. This may involve using a powerful artifact, casting a specific spell, or performing a ritual provided by an NPC, such as Lady Alindra or Lorakas the Shadowed. As the heroes work to destroy the phylactery, they may face resistance from the lingering essence of Shargrailar or other magical defenses.
Encounter 4: The Tomb’s Collapse
As the phylactery is destroyed, the Tomb of the Dracolich begins to collapse, and any remaining cultists mount a desperate, final attack. The heroes must defeat the cultists and escape the tomb before it is destroyed, navigating a treacherous series of collapsing tunnels and chambers.
- Daelin Stormrider: A powerful wizard from the Arcane Brotherhood who has been studying the Tomb of the Dracolich and the Cult of the Dragon. Daelin can provide the heroes with valuable information about the phylactery’s defenses and may be able to assist them in solving the puzzle or casting the necessary spells to destroy it.
- Grimnir Ironfoot: A dwarven engineer who has been tracking the Cult of the Dragon’s activities and the Tomb of the Dracolich. Grimnir can help the heroes navigate the collapsing tomb, using his knowledge of engineering and architecture to identify safe passages and shortcuts.
- Nissa Greenbough: A half-elf druid who has been observing the heroes throughout their adventure. Nissa can provide the heroes with healing and support during the final encounters and may be able to use her druidic magic to help them escape the collapsing tomb.
By overcoming these encounters and interacting with the key NPCs, the heroes will destroy Shargrailar’s phylactery and put an end to the Cult of the Dragon’s nefarious plans. The heroes will have saved the Sword Coast from the looming threat of the dracolich and earned the gratitude and respect of the region’s inhabitants, setting the stage for future adventures in the Forgotten Realms.