Redolent with evil the foul acts of veneration perpetrated in a fane of evil irredeemably leave their mark upon the fabric of the place. The design and decoration of such a locale mirrors its patron’s abhorrent proclivities.
Use the table below, to add depth and flavour to the PCs’ visit to the fane:
- Two large, vividly painted stone statues of devils or demons flank the fane’s entrance. The beasts are depicted in the act of striking at those entering the shrine. Beyond, a veritable forest of slender pillars holds aloft the ceiling. Carvings of lurid scenes of slaughter and sacrifice decorate each pillar.
- Small iron candle sconces jut from the walls. Wrought to look like grinning skulls each sconce has a hinged lid—the skull’s forehead opens—to enable the changing of the candle within. When lit, the candle’s light flicker in the skull’s eye sockets and gaping jaw.
- Purple and red tapestries depicting disturbing geometric shapes hide the wall behind the altar. The tapestries hang in a peculiar, unsettling way; their folds hint at deeper, perhaps non-Euclidean, mysteries hidden in their decorative patterns.
- Thick, viscous blood-like liquid oozes down the shrine’s walls into deep channels running around the room which funnel the liquid into a central pool. (Iron in the rock is responsible for the water’s blood-red hue).
- Six 20-foot deep pits pierce the chapel’s floor. Each is barely five-foot square and is used to hold prisoners and sacrifices. Nearby, a ladder crafted from leg bones lies on the floor next to a wall.
- Nauseating bas relief carvings of foul otherworldly creatures pursuing and killing humans in horribly graphic ways decorate the walls.
- As #6, but perceptive PCs discover a hidden niche opened by slipping a small blade into a jagged belly wound in one of the carved dying humans.
- A three-panelled brass screen wrought into terrible scenes of devilry and suffering partitions off part of the room. The bulky screen weighs 200 lbs.
- A huge statue depicting the fane’s patron stands fully 20-foot high on a dais in a shadowy alcove. Large chunks of green stone (malachites) glimmer in the statue’s eye sockets. A flaming brazier stands in front of the statue, cloaking it in shifting shadows.
- A wrought iron cage with jagged bars stands behind the altar; big enough for four humans (at a squeeze) the cage is where the priests keep their sacrifices. It reeks of despair.
- Yellowing bones fill deep precisely cut channels hacked into the floor. From above, it is obvious the channels form a gigantic, unholy symbol.
- Complicated arrangements of bones—mostly leg, arm and rib bones along with many skulls—decorate the walls. Stuck in place with some kind of adhesive, the bones come from scores—perhaps hundreds—of individuals.
- Two pyramids of skulls—as high as a grown man’s shoulders—flank the chapel’s main entrance. Carefully stacked, the piles can be knocked over with a strong push. Doing so, scatters the skulls across a wide area.
- Two huge iron braziers filled with coal and other foul things belch noxious smoke into the air. Each brazier is large enough to hold two bodies. Black sludge, soot and fragments of bones around the braziers’ bases hint at what is burnt within.
- Some sections of the chapel’s walls are crumbling, as if being eaten away by something inside. (The horrible influence of the fane’s lord is at work on the very fabric of the place). The stone crumbles at anything but the gentlest touch.
- An oppressive gloom—the manifestation of all the evil acts committed herein—fills the shrine. Nonmagical light is only half as effective as normal. The gloom does not dissipate until the shrine has been reconsecrated to a good-aligned power.
- Wrought iron cages—barely large enough for a human to crouch in—hang from the ceiling. Skeletons lie within most of the cages. A clever sets of wheels and pulleys enable the raising and lowering of the cages.
- A ten-foot wide cleft in the rock pierces the floor and cuts the shrine in twain. A narrow stone span bridges the gap, and faint sounds drift up from below. Beyond the chasm, a thick black curtain, decorated with unsettling, otherworldly patterns, hangs from the ceiling all the way to the floor obscuring sight of what lies beyond.
- The floor comprises dozens of gravestones stolen from nearby graveyards. The inscriptions on each are vandalised or effaced. Filled with burnt and splintered bones a six-foot long, three-foot wide and seven-foot deep hole in the floor may be nothing more than a bone pit. However, the bones could also hide a secret burial crypt or reliquary.
- Alcoves pierce the walls. Inside each stands an upright sarcophagus with an ornately carved lid. Each sarcophagus holds the remains of a worshipper. Some might animate, when the chapel is threatened.
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