Strange things have been happening at the king's court, and one of the courtiers is worried. Some of the king's other advisors have been making unusual recommendations of late, and the king has been taking their advice. Courtiers disappear without a trace or die under mysterious circumstances, those in power change their minds without apparent reason, and courtiers with unpopular opinions encounter personal emergencies that force them to leave the court. Can the PCs find and expose the nefarious source of these strange events? Find out in the latest miniadventure for D&D v.3.5 by Robert Wiese. Drop this free online adventure into any large city that supports a court environment. Suitable for four 11th-level characters.
The court of a ruler attracts intrigue the same way it attracts peasants looking for justice. Courtiers vie for position and favor with the ruler, and enemies plot to overthrow him and install themselves -- or at least someone more friendly to their own interests -- in his place. A veneer of civility covers this chesslike game, masking its harsh purpose and sometimes deadly import. Indeed, a modicum of pleasantry is essential, since rapidly shifting loyalties can turn enemies into allies and allies into enemies in the span of an hour. Open hostility could easily destroy any possibility of future alliances with today's enemies, so it is always better to hedge one's bets.
It is said that the real rulers of a nation rule from behind the throne. While this assertion may not be true in all cases, it is certain that when a ruler is not strong-willed, some crafty advisor almost always makes the real decisions. Such a courtier has infiltrated the court of King Ceral, and he has begun taking steps to ensure that he and he alone holds the true power.
About the Authors
Robert Wiese began playing D&D with the blue boxed set (the one after the original three small pamphlets). He has campaigned through three and a half editions of his favorite roleplaying game, and he has tried Call of Cthulhu and some other games as well. Throughout it all, he has learned that a great DM makes a great campaign. So he is happy to assist great DMs with little ideas such as this adventure. He led the RPGA Network through the tough times and now works at UNR as a biochemical researcher. Life is very full between studies, work, pets (three dogs, three cats, a fish, a frog, a toad, and two rats) and gaming, but he always puts his wife and his faith first.