Domain of the Month
The Shadow Rift
Now the feared land of feys hiding in this strange fissure ...
Third edition: RL3E / RLPH, Gaz 5, plus VRGttSF for its denizens
Other selected interesting source: Book of Sorrow and Book of Secrets (Lesser Breeds of the Arak, I and II) Appeared during the Grand Conjunction (year 740).
After being saved by the mists Jander finds himself lost in the shadow rift suffering from mild amnesia and is discovered by a group of Sith. Taking in his white hair and elven features the Sith being believing that Jander is in fact the reincarnation of their lost king Arak. He is quickly placed in a position of power and even gains the fancy of Maeve.
Loht however is not so easily fooled. He don't believe his father has returned in any form and wants very badly to punish this interloper. His hands are tied as Jander for all purposes seems to be a shadow fey and untouchable under Loht's own laws. Loht hatches a plan to bring in outsiders to be his personal spies and assassins if needs be. In return he will grant the PCs his full protection while in his realm and when they finish their task he will even allow them one boon (be it returning a friends soul, Arcane knowledge, Fey crafted goods or any things the PCs wish for). Jander this whole time has slowly regained his memories and feels trapped. He knows that he is not Arak but if he tells anyone he faces the wrath of thousands of angry fey. Even with his vampire powers he is no match for a army that powerful. He will seek out the PCs and offer a plan. If they help him fake his own death and escape the shadow rift he will in turn help them escape as well.
Just a quick adventure idea.
A few very powerful unique fey are slowly forming out of the shadowstuff in the Shadow Rift. The shadow fey are at first baffled by the fact that the births of these fey don't seem to coincide with the deaths of any other fey, then increasingly frightened as they realize that the new fey are beginning to study the workings of the Obsidian Gate. Could Gwydion's influence be reaching beyond the gate to rip new fey out of the fabric of the Rift--fey who, unlike his first misbegotten creations, are completely loyal to him?
Nathan of the FoS
I have to say that the Shadow Rift is hard for me to work with. For one thing it requires high-powered characters; for another, it seems to me that a lot of the atmosphere of Faerie would be most effectively used with a single person. Those of you who have read "Smith of Wotton Major" can think of that; it would hardly have been the same story if Smith could have gone into Faerie with someone else to talk to and observe with.
I like the idea of the shadow fey very well, and Gwydion is one of my favorite darklords, but I confess I'm at a loss as to what I would do with them in a campaign.
It's very tough to get the feel of the SR right. The other 10 VRG topics are pretty ingrained in pop culture and gothic movies/books. Gypsies, Demons, Vampires, etc pop up all the time. Shadow Fey are unique to RL in execution, and their inspiration is lesser-known to most players and DMs. Yes, if you do the research, you can find all about the Seelie and Unseelie Court, and such, but if you weren't raised with that kind of folklore, it's tough to get a grip on the feel. VRG Shadow Fey and Gaz V did a lot to get me in the right mindset, but so far I've used the Rift only very sparingly for fear of doing a disservice to the feel.
I wondered about using it in conjunction with the Tome of Terrors and the Bogey Men from Dark Tales and Disturbing Legends. After all they are related to the fey and their stories have a folk / faerie tale quality to them.
I wondered about the possibility of having an old crumbling gothic manor that was built on a dormant sinkhole of evil from whence the Bogey Men were borne. The sinkhole is located deep beneath the manor in underground caverns, through which a river flows. Go deeper into the caverns and eventually lead into the Shadow Rift.
I was also thinking about using the Sinister Gallery dread possibility from Gaz 3. But instead of producing a painting the Scottmatter’s wrote and illustrated a book of faerie tales based on local folk tales. Amongst them were unwitting references to Lord Sithington and his lair. As part of the punishment he cursed the book and hid it in the manor house to wait for inspecting victims. Enter one of the PC’s who inherits the house from his dead (missing) relatives...
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