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Warlock’s Apprentice: Phosus, Dread Wyrm of the Falls

Warlock’s Apprentice: Phosus, Dread Wyrm of the Falls

In the belly of the Dragoncoil Mountains lies an ancient and spectacular set of magma falls. The falls have many names but are most commonly known as the Firefalls of Ghoss. The story tells of a young dragonfolk sorcerer who, fleeing through the mountains from an angered nest of wyverns, discovered a wide tunnel leading to the falls. After descending into the mountain, he spied a ledge that looked out over the great flow of magma, and walking upon it, discovered a thinning of the veil between Midgard and the Eleven Hells. The sorcerer began to plot immediately.

Near the ledge in the heated stone walls around the magma flows, Ghoss built himself a fortress—hiring all manner of mercenaries, builders, and madmen to assist in its construction. The fortress housed Ghoss’ greatest hope—a magical focus built to harness the raw elemental energy that emanated from the falls and the infernal magic cast by the gateway on the ledge. But unbeknownst to the sorcerer, a great malevolence slumbered in the deep places below where the firefalls flowed into darkness. On the eve of the celebration of the fortress’s completion, a great wyrm imbued with magma and flame awoke to the sound of carousing and victory. Phosus, the dread wyrm of the falls arose and incinerated most of the celebrants in a single breath. “IT IS MINE,” the beast roared and with that took up residence in Ghoss’s fortress. The dragon found the focus and wrapped its fiery length around the stone and crystals, feeding on the stored magic.

As for the sorcerer, his life was spared, and he made a bargain with the wyrm. In exchange for five great magical treasures stolen from the temples of the gods, Ghoss could have access to the smoldering focus that Phosus now coveted. The dragon smiled and agreed, but upon the delivery of the final treasure, Phosus turned the sorcerer to ash.

Some of Ghoss’s Offerings

Phosus prizes the following treasures above all others in its horde. Each was brought to the dragon by Ghoss, who acquired them through treachery, gall, and murder. The elders and high priests from whom the items were stolen are eager to have them returned. Fortunes await adventurers willing to risk the magma, smoke, and teeth of Phosus’ lair.

Is and Suw, the Knives of Boreas

Weapons (Is [rapier], Suw [shortsword]), very rare (require attunement)

These twin swords are made from iced steel in the cold forges of the Northlands. Their blades are pale blue and translucent and when unsheathed shed dim white light in a 20-foot radius around their wielder. Their pommels are freezing to the touch to any save those who are attuned to them. The blades become shrouded in strange runes when exposed to temperatures below freezing; the runes float away from the swords and fade from sight after a few feet.

Each of the blades is a +2 weapon. The wielder may freely choose to have the swords do cold damage instead of their normal damage type. Once each day, as a bonus action, the wielder may invoke the following:

Frozen Wrath of Boreas. For one minute, creatures who take damage from both blades in the same round must make a DC 14 Constitution save or be restrained until the end of their next turn.

Visios, the Blindfold of Charun

Helm, very rare (requires attunement)

This length of shimmering black silk is adorned with small skulls embroidered in silver thread and tiny pearls. Unless wrapped around the eyes of an attuned creature, Visios whispers incoherently to creatures within 60 foot of it. The whispers are both menacing and soothing. The first time a creature hears the whispers, it must make a DC 10 Wisdom save or be frightened for 1d4 hours, after which it is immune to this effect.

A creature who is attuned to Visios and wraps the blindfold around its eyes gains Devil’s Sight (as per the warlock’s Eldritch Invocation). Once each day, as a reaction to the death of a creature within 60 feet, the bearer of Visios may open their spirit to the following:

Truth in Death. Learn one secret about the dying creature from its spirit as it dies. The GM determines the nature of the secret learned.

Ales, the Mighty Stein of Ninkash

Wondrous item (beer stein), very rare (requires attunement)

Made from lacquered sandstone and cherry wood, this festive-looking drinking stein fills the space its bearer occupies with pungent alcoholic mist. Anyone adjacent to the bearer can smell the aroma. The handle of Ales is carved wood and portrays a dwarven fertility symbol with lustrous yellow hair. The cap is made from sandstone and gold and does not flip open for any save Ales’s bearer. The stein is ever-filled with high-quality beer, and provided they drink from the stein each midday, the bearer gains +1 to Strength. The bearer of Ales may drain the stein once each day as a bonus action to gain the following:

Might of Nakash. For one minute, the bearer gains advantage on all Strength and Charisma ability checks. Additionally, creatures who take damage from a weapon attack of the bearer must succeed a DC 14 Strength save or be pushed 10 feet away from the bearer or knocked prone—bearer’ choice.

Read more on the dragon Phosus and Ghoss’s offerings—and read other great articles—in the upcoming Warlock, only on Patreon!


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