DOKK Library

The Laughing Giant’s Secret

Authors Matthew W. Schmeer

License CC-BY-SA-3.0

                                                                                                        The Laughing Giant’s Secret
The western hills of Vlarkenden are some of the most beautiful untamed lands in all the realms. If you plan to head out this way to adventure, be sure to look
for The Inn of the Laughing Giant, the last bastion of civilization before the wildlands begin. As far as I’m concerned, no trip to Vlarkenden is complete
without a quick stop to say hello to Hogarth, the innkeeper—a friendly rucksack of a man who loves to hear adventurers’ tales, and often spins a few of his
own. The savvy traveler will stock up on last minute provisions and grab a night or two of rest before heading out on the untrampled trail. Be sure to order a
pint of his special Adventurer’s Amber Ale, brewed and aged on the premises! Of course, you might have trouble finding the inn, as this regional treasure is a
secret the locals would love to keep to themselves. But persistent inquisitors will be richly rewarded with a visit they won’t soon forget!
                                                                                                                             —Stik Reeve’s Guide to Vlarkenden

About the Inn
No one knows or remembers when The Inn of the Laughing Giant first appeared or how long it has existed in the valley. The Inn is tainted by powerful
residual magic (detect magic spells & magic items make everything, including PCs, faintly glow) which affects every living thing that stays too long, until
the point that escape is futile and the characters must remain in the inn forever or risk dying upon setting foot off the property. The magic blanketing the inn
is so powerful that PCs will permanently lose 5% of accumulated XP for each night spent at the inn if they do not settle their tab before dawn of each day.
Hogarth, the halfing-giant proprietor, cannot leave the the inn’s property, else he will immediately turn to dust. Other other NPCs—including Sarae &
Bükan, serving wenches, Sir Norris, the bouncer, Gwark Nithal, a petty thief, Tenk Ekralc, a wizened ranger, and Bob, the tavern drunk—suffer from the
same malady. Hogarth, driven mad by knowledge of his fate, often kills his guests, using their blood to brew his ale, and serving their flesh to unsuspecting
patrons. None of the other NPCs know this.
RTT = roll on Djerv's Random Treasure Table                                                              11. The Ferret. An Orc cutting his toenails.
Ground Level                                                                                             12. The Raccoon. An Orc eating a mincemeat pie.
1. Tavern main. Bob, Sir Norris, Gwark Nithal, Tenk Eklarc, & Bob                                        13. The Rabbit. An Orc reading a book entitled The War on Art.
   lounge around the room, playing various tavern games.                                                 14. The Mouse. A Dwarf polishing his axe.
2. Bar. Hogarth & the wenches; Hogarth has a Club +6 hidden under the                                    15. The Rat. An Orc stacking 1,000gp worth of coins by size.
   bar.                                                                                                  16. The Owl. A random Harlot, sleeping.
       a. Pass-through. Empty.                                                                           17. The Raven. A random Harlot and a Halfling thief.
       b. Taproom. The keg has a false bottom, and holds a Flask of                                      18. The Crow. Empty.
          Never-ending Ale.                                                                              19. The Vulture. RTT.
3. Kitchen. Various kitchen implements. 18 iron rations in a cabinet. The
   fireplace holds a Laughing Kettle.                                                                    Cellar/Dungeon Level
4. Pantry. RTT.                                                                                          1. Storeroom. The floor is covered with straw, and scattered about are
5. The Doublet. Empty.                                                                                      goat bones, humanoid bones, and odd articles of clothing. The room is
6. Stairs to Cellar Level.                                                                                  blood-splattered, and smells strongly of dung and urine. Each of the
7. Mudroom. Empty.                                                                                          tables contains 2d6 cheeses and 1d6 sausages of various size.
8. The Wren. Sir Norris' room; 200gp under bed.                                                          2. Mathilda's Lair. Mathilda is Hogarth's daughter, polymorphed into a
9. The Swallow. Bob's room; RTT.                                                                            Piassa Bird by The 3 Weirds. Killing Mathilda will immediately throw
10. The Nuthatch. Gwark Nithal's room; RTT.                                                                 Hogarth into a blind rage, and he will rally all of the inn's patrons to
11. The Bluejay. Bükan's room; assorted knickknacks, plus a golden                                          attack the adventurers. The floor is littered with straw & bones, and the
   katana +1.                                                                                               bales of straw throughout the room contain 1d20sp and 1d30gp worth
12. The Catbird. Sarae's room; assorted knickknacks and 17sp.                                               of jewelry & trinkets.
13. Indoor outhouse. An Orc reading an upside down book.                                                 3. The 3 Weirds. The door to this room is protected with a Glyph of
14. The Starling. Empty.                                                                                    Warding. Inside are 3 1,000 year-old blind albino 15th-level witches.
15. The Finch. Tenk Eklarc's room; RTT.                                                                     Upon being discovered, the Weirds will immediately cast Symbol of
16. The Redwing. A friendly Gnoll invites the PC to play Dragon Chess.                                      Pain, Waves of Fatigue, and Inflect Critical Wounds. Killing the
17. Yard. 6 goats, 400sp, 200gp at bottom of well.                                                          witches will break the spell on the inn (turning all NPCs to dust) & the
18. Stable. 2 elderly Centaurs, 3 Griffins, 2 Warbeasts, a War Pig, & 2                                     spell on Mathilda. Upon the witches' deaths, the PCs will find
   Wyld Stallions.                                                                                          themselves standing in an empty field with the un-polymorphed
19. Hitching Posts. 2 Mules, a Zedonk, and a Quarter Horse. 35sp, 75gp,                                     Mathilda, a thirtyish quarter-halfling/quarter-giant/half-elf maiden, and
   and 2 trivels (could be a trident, could be shovel) distributed among the                                a two-horned unicorn.
   packs.                                                                                                4. The Cistern. Filled with blood; throwing in a gold piece removes the
                                                                                                            Glyph of Warding on #3. There are 3,000 gold pieces at the bottom of
Upper Level                                                                                                 the cistern.
1. Hogarth's Bedroom. 1,600gp hidden in a false bottom drawer of the                                     5. Cask Room. Each of these casks holds the bodies of two adventurers
   dresser, plus two long swords hanging on the wall above the bed.                                         fermenting in Hogarth's Adventurer's Amber Ale.
2. Hogarth's private storage. Two suits of Leather Armor +3, a Dagger of                                 6. Cold Storage Room. The naked bodies of sixteen adventurers (mostly
   Double Stabbing +2, and a set of thieves tools missing its pouch.                                        dwarves, gnomes, and goblins) in various states of dressing &
3. The Badger. RTT.                                                                                         processing dangle from giant hooks embedded in the ceiling and walls;
4. The Black Bear. RTT.                                                                                     RTT.
5. The Marmoset. RTT.                                                                                    7. Cold Storage Room. This area is packed floor to ceiling with bales of
6. Dormitory. RTT.                                                                                          straw. A wooly mammoth skeleton lies buried under the straw in the far
7. The Fox. Empty.                                                                                          end of the area, a Spear of Piercing +3 under one of its tusks.
8. The Hound. Empty.                                                                                     8. Cold Storage Room. the naked bodies of twenty human adventurers in
9. The Wolf. A drunken Hobgoblin snoring loudly, passed out on the bed.                                     various states of dressing & processing hang from giant hooks
10. The Jackal. An Orc polishing his sword.                                                                 embedded in the ceiling and walls; RTT.
Tavern maps by Tim Hartin, used under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License                                                                       Created for the OPD 2011 Contest by Matthew W. Schmeer @
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License