Dragon Rock Mage Guilds
This school is for use in a SpellJammer setting
and was written and copwrited by
Please send you comments to him as the author, which he richly deserves.
Dragon Rock is an asteroid city that lies in the Tears of Selune.
It is very similar to the Rock of Bral in this regard though it is an entirely
separate and independent entity. Dragon Rock is a cosmopolitan trade
center that is home numerous beings of many races. Among the other
organizations of the city have developed five distinct academies of magic
that compete with local individual teachers for students and apprentices
(students pay and are thus usually from or sponsored by wealthy families
or groups while apprentices work for their keep).
Dragon Rock Overview:
Dragon Rock is an asteroid 10 miles long, shaped
vaguely like a spear head. At its widest point it is over 2 miles
wide. It has two distinct sides though it lacks cliffside style edges
in all but one area. Instead the edges come toward each other and
meet gently enough that foot traffic can easily pass from one side of the
gravity plane to the other. In a few places there are specially rigged
ferris wheel style contraptions that allow goods to be moved from one side
to another with a minimum of fuss. Each wheel has 10 or more enclosed
platforms with weighted bottoms that spin to align with the gravity plane,
all inside the enclosed box (this allows goods to remain generally “upright”
while keeping anything from flying free during the sudden shift at the
gravity plane). Each can hold 2 horses or a cart without problem.
The asteroid has dozens of separate docks around it, each
controlled by the city. Both sides of the asteroid are covered with
habitations and warehouses, some even built outward so they form their
own docks (allowing ships to dock directly with the warehouse or possibly
even fly into it depending on the size of the warehouse and the ship).
Of course these also have port authorities stationed there at all times
to ensure the city gets its tax revenue. Dragon Rock is the most
active asteroid in the Tears of Selune, even more than its famous rival
the Rock of Bral (see F&A pg. 170 for references to the Rock of Bral
being in the Tears of Selune).
Dragon Rock is owned by 12 LG merchants who
have refused to sell any of the asteroid to others. They have arranged
numerous long-term leases, however. The city itself has uncounted
thousands of people of all species living here and trades in almost everything
imaginable. The merchants that own Dragon Rock do not actually govern
it, instead allowing a council of merchant houses, trade costers, guilds,
faiths, and a select few other organizations to act as the government.
They are absolutely trustworthy, however, and will step in to deal swiftly
and harshly with any group or individual that damages the city’s reputation
in this regard (this has caused many to speculate that the merchants are
simply fronts for the Arcane, even though the Arcane prefer to keep their
nearest outpost on the Rock of Bral instead of on Dragon Rock). In
order to encourage trade the city (as dictated by the owning merchants)
charges extremely low docking fees of only one silver piece per ton (and
without nearly as much corruption in local officials that requires bribing
as at most ports!). Additionally they started a service that is very
popular and many others have followed them into by buying up goods from
those that must move on for resale (and thus at a discount) or even selling
such goods for a commission (which is slightly better for the merchant
except that they run the risk that their goods won’t sell at all and they
will earn nothing—and still owe the merchants a slight storage fee).
Some warehouses even exist that deal in special items such as foodstuffs
that must be kept cold and the like. Naturally they charge higher
prices for their specialized services.
Combined with the large population (both permanent
and in terms of visitors) and low rental and construction costs Dragon
Rock has become very popular for organizations. As such it has an
unusually large number of guilds, temples, merchant companies, and the
like even for a city of its size and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Of
course some of these groups seek recognition so they can hold seats on
the ruling council but the large number of councilors actually means the
council rarely manages any changes (which makes merchants even happier
and promotes trade all the more).
Format of Entries:
School Name: Overview
Things of Note: Anything that makes
the school unique beyond its functioning as a magical academy. This
includes any special purposes or agendas it pursues, allies and enemies,
and the like.
Head of School: The official headmaster/headmistress
of the school is given along with any important personal notes. If
they are merely a figurehead the true power in charge of the school will
Specialty: If the school has any
special areas of expertise such as elemental or wild magic. This
may also include kits.
New Mages: Discusses some of the
basics of what a 1st level mage trained at the school will have in the
way of spells, proficiencies, etc. Note that all these schools train
higher level mages also so the DM should not consider all students to be
0th or 1st level. Finally this section will note how many new mages
can be trained at a time, if a limit is known.
Spells of Note: If the school has any particular spells of note
that it teaches or have originated here.
Other Services: Any other services
the school may offer. This could be items for sale, selling minor
wards and charms, or anything else of note.
Prices: Notes on general price
ranges for each service the school offers. This is in a 1-5 level
rating so DMs can decide their own exact figures to fit with their campaigns
(similar to a Volo’s Guide rating). One is extremely cheap, 3 is
average, and 5 is very expensive.
The Tower of Living Flame:
This school is commonly known by the name of the
tower it inhabits though the Shapers Guild, which runs it, refers to it
as the Academy of Evoked Magical Studies. The tower is a tall structure
that is built to look like a single wavy candle flame. The tower
has at least 12 above ground stories though it is tall enough to house
15 standard human stories (no one outside the Seekers really knows and
there may be additional extra-dimensional space added). Inside it
is filled with libraries, storage rooms, vaults, spell casting chambers,
apartments, dormitories, and similar areas. In addition to the above
ground areas of the tower the guild has dug two levels down (the legal
limit on Dragon Rock) to gain additional space. In the front of the
Tower is a store where components and the like are sold. Most items
that are sold are not actually kept in the store but rather lists of what’s
available are and purchases will be allowed to examine the items after
they have been retrieved from a vault before the actual purchase is made.
2 well equipped invokers are present at all times to ensure no one tries
to steal anything. Students are not required to live in the tower
and most choose not to if they have a home to go to elsewhere on Dragon
Rock (locals refer to Dragon Rock as “the Rock” and Rock of Bral as “the
other Rock” but most people call it “the Dragon” for short, it is also
know to some as the Dragon’s Tear which refers to its location in the Tears
of Selune). Apprentices, however, must live in the tower so as to
be constantly available to perform whatever tasks the resident and visiting
wizards need to have done.
Things of Note:
As a school run by the Shapers the Tower of Living
Flame has all the enemies and allies that organization does. Locally
they are contracted with the Dragon Rock authorities to train the city’s
mages and so get along well with the local officials. Because of
this contract local guard and watch forces and ships of the city’s navy
have an unusually high percentage of mages in their ranks (especially invokers).
However they are also required to break with their usual traditions and
train generalist mages and a few diviners also. A highly lawful streak
has slowly grown among the local Shapers as a result of so many of their
members serving in the government forces and several have gone on to high
stations in local law enforcement, the military, and government which gives
the Shapers an unusual amount of influence on Dragon Rock. This influence
has not allowed them to avoid local law, however, so they are registered
as a guild on Dragon Rock. This has arguably given them even more
As the clergy of Helm provide the clerical arm of
local law enforcement they work continually with Shapers and Shaper trained
mages and a close alliance has developed between the two organizations.
When the local church of Helm sponsors a voyage or one of its members is
looking for a crew there is no question that at least one Shaper will be
along to provide magical support. At the same time the Shapers and
the local clergy of Tyr have developed a lasting rivalry, partially due
to the Tyrrans’ belief that city is not as interested in justice as it
should be. This belief has led them many times to push for placing
priests of the god of justice in the law enforcement system, both on the
streets (where the Helmites are) and in the magistrates’ level. They
have been blocked every time, especially by the church of Helm who wish
to keep the position in support of the watch and guard to themselves which
has led to a political feud that includes both the Tormites (Tyr’s worship
on Dragon Rock is based out of a chapel in the temple of Torm) and the
Shapers, among others.
Head of School:
The headmaster of the Tower of Living Flame is Ardan
Sunfever (LN hm W(I)14 I17 Cn18), a strict man who performs his job well.
He is generally left to run the school freely by his superior, the local
head of the Shaper’s Guild, Guildmaster Kilathax “Firebolts” (N hm W(I)16
I18 W15 Cn17, uses war mage kit). Kilathax is best known for his
pronouncement one day during a political debate that all wizards trained
to 5th level or higher by the Tower of Living Flame would be given the
flame arrow spell if they did not yet know it and could learn it.
This was a highly unusual move as flame arrow is a conjuration/summoning
spell and thus lies in an opposition school to invocation but it was done
to rebut arguments that contracting with a school that taught only invocation/evocation
spells was bad for the city since it mages would then lack other sorts
of spells, even ones useful in battle. So far he’s been as good as
his word. Among Shapers, however, he is better known for his claim
that the Shapers were founded on Dragon Rock and that the Tower of Living
Flame is their original headquarters. Though the Tower is quite probably
one of its early guild headquarters few Shapers take this claim seriously
and instead feel Kilathax is just trying to improve his political standing
within the Shapers.
Invocation; As befits a school run by the Shapers,
invocation is strongly supported here. Due to its contract with the
local government, however, they also train generalist mages and a few diviners.
Two generalist mages (levels 10 and 13) and a diviner (level 12) are kept
on staff as the primary instructors that round out the training of any
non-invokers. The war mage (from CGR1 The Complete Spacefarer’s Handbook)
and militant mage (from the CWHB) kits are taught here and some patricians
(from the CWHB) also graduate. Note that the school will not train
non-invokers unless they are working for the city (and fall under the city’s
contract with the Shapers) and invokers that are not Shapers will pay double
the usual fees for training.
New Mages: 1st level mages trained at the Tower of Living Flame
always have the spells detect magic, read magic, and cantrip (if 1st edition
cantrips are used then they have a book of cantrips if they so desire that
contains as many useful cantrips as they have points of intelligence along
with 2-8 reversed, 2-5 legerdmain, 2-8 person-affecting, 2-8 personal,
and 2-5 haunting sound cantrips as noted on page 79 of UA, note that the
cantrips chill, color, dampen, salt, spice, sweeten, warm, dirty, dusty,
sour, belch, blink, cough, nod, scratch, sneeze, twitch, yawn, smokepuff,
creak, tap, and whistle are all evocation cantrips and thus highly appropriate).
In addition they will have at least one protective and one attack spell
along with another miscellaneous spell. DMs may allow them to start
with even more spells if they wish. Mages trained by the Tower of
Living Flame learn reading/writing (common) for free. Those mages
trained for the city are required to know spacemanship, spellcraft, and
spelljamming also. If they choose to devote additional slots to any
of these proficiencies they gain a +2 bonus (rather than the usual +1)
for each additional slot devoted to the proficiency as long as they had
the extra training at the Tower of Living Flame (this includes mages that
were not initially trained here but come here at higher levels).
The Tower keeps its numbers of students at any time secret but outside
estimates state they can clearly handle more than 30 students at a time
and that the actual limit is undoubtedly higher—especially if the students
Spells of Note:
Due to the profusion of new magic and spells that
appear on Toril many Shapers try to visit their Dragon Rock division every
year or two to try to get hold of any new invocations that the Shapers
may have acquired. Since Spelljamming society has little contact
with Realmsian society and most mages are extremely protective of their
spells the local Shapers do not get that many new spells. The addition
of a diviner to their ranks has aided them somewhat, however, in locating
new invocations. They also frequently send members to visit Candlekeep
and similar sites in hopes of gaining a copy of a new spell. The
Tower of Flame’s library contains all the PHB2 spells that have either
the invocation or evocation schools listed on them along with any additional
ones from Realms sources, the ToM, and PO:S&M that the DM desires.
This does not mean any member of the Shapers will be allowed free access
to these spells, however, though they may purchase a copy of any of them
for 1000 gp/spell level. The Shapers do not sell to those who are
not members of their organization under any circumstances, even if they
were originally trained here.
Due to their contract with the city the Tower of Living Flame
trains mages primarily in invocation/evocation, divination, and a few enchantment/charm
spells (those that are useful for disabling criminals such as sleep, hold
person, feeblemind, and hold monster). They balance this selection
with abjurations, especially for those mages they train under their contract
with the city.
The Shapers sell spell scrolls of divination
spells (only) for at least 2000 gp per spell level to nonmembers (members
pay the fee noted above). They will also identify items but nonmembers
rarely use this service as the Seekers are considered both more reliable
and better at it (since they tend to throw in any known history or the
like in addition to just simple item properties). This fee costs
at least 400 gp per item (200 gp for nonmembers) and the costs of any spells
necessary to reverse any curses or other harm that comes to the caster.
Spell components are also sold here, though those components only usable
in spells inaccessible by invokers will generally not be found here (due
to the presence of diviners and non-specialized wizards some of these components
may be found here but always cost twice the usual price). This is,
naturally a prime place to hire invokers, and the guild is willing to try
to locate (among its members only, naturally) mages to fill any specific
needs a potential employer may have for a very reasonable fee (if an employ
is located then an additional, but still low, fee will be applied).
The guild also allows members to access its libraries, spell chambers,
and laboratories, along with on hand attendants for reasonable fees (related
to the level of research, training, spell casting, etc. they are actually
going to perform). Sometimes just turning over a copy of a new spell
or potion recipe to the school (but only if successfully developed) is
cause for a full refund of all fees (and at least a partial refund).
Prices: Generally guild services are of average cost (3)
to members and at least higher than average (4) to non-members, if they’re
even offered to non-members at all. Spell components are sold to
members at a 10% discount on the price they are sold to non-members at
and include convenient packaging and non-magical preservation methods as
appropriate to the purchaser. Since the Mages’ Guild set up shop
the Shapers have had to bring down their prices for components slightly
to be competitive with the rival guild. For a 1 cp/month fee various
craftsmen and warehouses that stock items of interest to guild members
(such as specially designed robes with convenient pockets for spell components,
made to order items of various materials, etc.) are allowed to advertise
As noted above, apprentices pay for their
training with service, service that lasts 25 years for those that have
no other income. Few apprentices actually spend 25 years in the Tower
before gaining 1st level, however, as they will have some funds to help
pay for their schooling or will even earn money as best possible on the
side while here (such as using cantrip spells for a fee once they’ve learned
to cast them). In home tutoring is expensive (5), as one would expect,
but then only the rich actually take advantage of this. Also paying
with rare and powerful items and spells (and information, etc.) can cover
all or part of one’s training. Even if the guild I not willing to
make the deal an individual member might be willing to pay for the person’s
training as they find the item or spell to be more valuable to them than
it is to the Shapers Guild as a whole. Advanced training (after reaching
1st level) is somewhat expensive (4) but can be bartered for in the same
The Academy of Knowledge:
The Academy of Knowledge, or simply the Academy
as it is locally known, is run by the Seekers under license from the city.
They are allowed to train diviners and generalist mages only as, by an
ancient technicality in the law, they are not required to be a guild or
church (and are not). The center of Seeker activity on Dragon Rock
is the Library, a sprawling 5 story tall structure that has an additional
4 sublevels (special permission has been granted each time the Seekers
have asked to add another subterranean level after exhaustive review by
the government, they are only allowed to apply for such special license
due to their status as a library). The building houses cells (the
type where scribes work, not dungeon cells), spell casting chambers, storage
rooms, vaults, libraries, and the like. Dormitories are shared with
the Shrine of Savras and the Temple of Oghma that are both locate nearby.
Things of Note:
Obviously the Academy is based in a library and
as it is run by the Seekers it has their same allies and enemies.
Further, while not run by the Sages Guild, many of the local Seekers are
members of the guild and the guild helps sponsor the library and school
both. Additionally the churches of Savras, Oghma, and Thoth (based
out of and allied with the local temple of Ptah) are all firm allies of
the Seekers and often aid in training the diviners, most of whom join one
of these churches. Denier, Milil, and Gond do not have churches on
Dragon Rock though they do have worshippers, many of which are Seekers
or work with the Seekers. Nebulun, a gnomish deity, does have clergy
at the local combined temple of the Lords of the Golden Hills (the gnome
pantheon) that are closely allied with the Seekers and the same is true
of the dwarven deity Dugmaren Brightmantle. Clergy of both Savras
and Thoth train at the Academy, though some members of Thoth’s clergy train
at the Tower of the Living Flame instead due to Thoth’s directive for them
to gather as much new magical lore as possible.
Head of School: Sage and Diviner Harnas Spellsinger (N(G) hem
W(D)13 I18 W17 D15, uses academician kit from CWHB, sage specialty is human
and demi-human spelljamming and magical history) is not only in charge
of the local Seekers but he is also the local head of Savras’s church along
with his duties as head of the Academy. These duties, along with
his studies, keep him too busy to watch the school carefully but his easygoing
manner suggests he would not even if he had the time. Instead he
allows the individual instructors to oversee their students’ progress.
Harnas is a close friend of the elven ambassador and has family (that he
keeps in touch with) in the elven fleet. As such he feeds them any
information he comes across he feels they might be interested in or need
to know. Given his position that is quite a bit.
Divination; In addition to specializing in divination
magic the Academy also produces numerous geomancers, astonomers (both from
CGR1 The Complete Spacefarer’s Handbook), scholars (from PO:S&M), academicians,
and mystics (both from the CWHB). A few arcanists (from CGR1) also
learn their trades here. Note that many of the students that graduate
from the Academy are more than simple mages, they are sages.
New Mages: 1st level mages that graduate from the academy possess
the spells detect magic, read magic, and cantrip (or a book of cantrips
if 1st Edition cantrips are in use and they so desire; note that members
of Thoth’s clergy do not start with read southern magic as this distinction
does not exist above Toril) along with one other divinatory spell (usually
identify or comprehend languages) and one attack and one defensive spell
(the world is a dangerous place and many go out seeking knowledge).
They may begin with even more spells if the DM wishes. All graduates
gain the proficiency read/write (common) for free and are highly encouraged
to learn spellcraft. Any mage trained here that chooses to spend
an additional slot beyond the minimum needed to acquire spellcraft, modern
languages, read/write, reading lips, ancient languages, local history (if
the DM determines the library has information on the area desired—otherwise
the proficiency cannot be learned here at all), or ancient history (again,
only if the library has information on the area of history desired) gains
a +2 bonus rather than the usual +1 bonus to the proficiency for each additional
slot spent on it. Note that this bonus only applies if the mage was
training at the Academy when the proficiency slots were applied.
The academy can probably train over 100 students at a time though it has
never had so many that it has had to discover its limit (besides, too many
students would interfere with research rather than enhancing it).
Spells of Note:
The Seekers have access to a great number
of spells of all types, not just divinations, and the DM should take this
into account when deciding what spells can be learned here. Rare
and unusual spells would not be inappropriate. Note that the Seekers
will not allow mages they don’t trust absolutely (and with the SPs of Thoth’s
ability to detect lie at all times this should be hard to fake) to have
access to certain spells the DM determines to be repugnantly and totally
evil or world shattering. Likewise they will not destroy spells whose
only purpose is to distort or destroy information (such as erase and forget)
but neither will they allow free access to them.
Information is the major service the Seekers offer
and they offer excellent quality for a very high price. The reliability
of Seeker answers in unsurpassed (even the Arcane, on the rare occasions
they deal in information, are less direct and so less helpful than the
Seekers). Obviously simple and common information will be available
at only a moderate mark-up over street value. Thus they will charge
higher prices for a set of charts than the local cartographers. This
is done because the Seekers don’t want to become cartographers, they want
to spend their time in research. The same is true with other common
information, the Seekers don’t want to deal in all the answers to every
little thing (though they do want to have those answers and record them
somewhere). Instead, like most sages, the Seekers deal in the most
unusual, hard to find, and elite information. They are experts on
matters of all sorts and it is this expertise that they sell to fund their
operations. In addition to information, the Seekers are also willing
to perform divinations for people and are the place of choice to come for
item identifications, item histories, heraldries, and the like. Simple
identify spells cost 500 gp for non-Seekers and 300 gp for Seekers but
the item will also come back with at least hints of its history if it has
a known and unusual history (a simple history will be revealed immediately
while an important one will cost more, the hints merely serving to entice
the owners to pay). Access to the library itself is restricted, even
for members and simply examining a simple text under controlled conditions
costs at least 1 gp for 12 hours. Of course one can always pay the
Seekers to obtain a copy of a work or text though the price will vary with
the work. The Seekers allow the Scribes’ Guild to handle the copying
of texts that are other peoples’ property though a secret deal between
the two often allows the Seekers to gain a copy without the original owner
knowing (if the work is something the Seekers want a copy of). Finally
the Seekers also maintain a separate, mundane school along with tutoring
at home those who can pay in the more usual subjects. The Seekers
rarely allow non-members access to magical works (such as copies of spells)
and when they do such payment is always in the form of information, magic,
or something else they desire but not money.
Sage and other information services are expensive
(4) but usually not outrageous. When the Seekers can’t provide at
least a partial answer they will usually return some or all up-front money
they will have taken as a deposit for the information. The Seekers
always accept knowledge as payment (including spells and such) and will
pay more than market value in information as barter. If the seller
wants cash they will generally get market price at best, however (though
a mix of payments types is acceptable—in fact it’s the most common way
of paying for most items). Apprentices at the Seekers’ school must
be Seekers or members of one of their allied/cosponsoring churches to be
eligible. They usually only spend 10-15 years before reaching 1st
level. This is heavily dependent on their instructors’ free time
and how quickly they learn, however, and can be considerably shorter.
In home tutoring is also offered (and not just in magic) and its quality
is second to none. For magical tutoring the highest fees on Dragon
rock (5) apply but tutoring a common education is much more reasonable
(3). Again, only Seekers and allied churches may attend advanced
magical training here, though the costs are not quite as high (4).
Occasionally those willing to perform service in return for instruction
will find they too, despite not being Seekers, can get training here (bartering
with unique information might also be possible).
The Three Stars:
The last of the official mage schools of Dragon
Rock is the unique Three Stars Academy, referred to simply as the Three
Stars. Three Stars is based out of an old 7-story inn that went bankrupt
years ago and was bought out. Inside are believed to be storage rooms,
dormitories, apartments, libraries, laboratories, spell casting chambers
and the like though no one outside the Three Stars is allowed in so no
one knows. It is known the old inn had an extensive cellar with a
wine cellar below (the legal limit in delvings). Additionally a small
shop has been added onto the front of the inn where the guild sells items
and services. The Three Stars is run by the local Mages Guild and
is heavily fortified through magic, guards, and creatures. The Three
Stars does accept students but only on an at home tutoring basis.
Only apprentices, all of which must join the Mages Guild, are taught at
the guildhall/academy itself. Only members of the Mages Guild may
enter the school building itself also (this doubles as the guild’s headquarters).
As the Mages Guild is very hard to get accepted to and very secretive little
is known about either.
Things of Note:
The secret to all this mystery is that the school
is actually the front for Dragon Rock’s most successful and secret thieves’
guild. Unlike most thieves’ guilds (including the others present
on Dragon Rock), this guild does not have a set territory and instead preys
on the entire city (and more especially visiting ships). In fact
the Mages Guild itself was founded by Guildmistress Shareena “Firelocks”
Dresdana as a way to attain legal license to found the school (generally
only the government, a temple, or a guild can establish a school of any
sort by city law, though a master may take on as many apprentices and journeyman
as authorized by his guild—on Dragon Rock this is 4 apprentice (0th level)
mages and 2 journeyman (1st or higher level) mages). The guild has
some ties to the PoTs (Shareena abhors slavery) and the IEN (see below).
They are enemies of the other local thieves guilds (though they’d rather
avoid them and occasionally reveal one to the authorities than go to war),
the Xenos (over half of the guild is not human), and the Chainmen.
The guildhall has tunnels connecting to the city’s
sewers with secret doors concealing the ends. The guild’s members
use these tunnels to leave the guildhall and return unseen when going out
to commit a burglary (they specialize in burglaries and do little on the
streets besides entertain while gathering information). The guild
is also one of the [albeit unacknowledged] best schools of magical and
nonmagical disguise and misdirection in the sphere. Shareena believes
in being able to do without magic whenever possible, especially when it
comes to disguise, information gathering, misdirection, and thievery.
That way there is always magic held in reserve to provide an unexpected
edge and one does not become lazy or reliant on it (since it will not be
there at some point).
Head of School:
Guildmistress Shareena “Firelocks” Dresdana (CN
hef W10/T12 I18 D18 Ch16, uses the imposter kit) is the head of the Mages
Guild, Three Stars Academy, and the thieves guild they front for (which
she also founded). Shareena is rumored to be the daughter of a captain
in the IEN (she is). Some rumors even say she is the love-child of
Captain Icarus, head of the IEN’s Realmspace fleet, himself (she isn’t).
When Shareena arrived on Dragon Rock almost 40 years ago she was already
determined to set up her own thieves guild. With the absence of a
Mages Guild (the Shapers had, arrogantly enough, registered as a guild
of invokers only) it was only natural for her to immediately see the opportunity
to set up an open business and base of operations that could be legally
fortified and protected while diverting all attention from her criminal
activities. Becoming the 3rd [official] mage school on Dragon Rock
was the perfect cover. Ever since she and her guild have taken to
heavily fortifying and warding their building while ensuring none of their
activities is even remotely linked to them. They have been very successful
Enchanters, Illusionists, Transmuters; Shareena
has long known that disguise and misdirection are the keys to remaining
undetected in her business so the few mages that are actually taught here
(all members of the thieves guild, most dual or multi-classed) are taught
these magics especially. Of course thieves (and thief-acrobats if
1st edition is used) are also trained here along with a few bards and fighters.
Two cleric/fighter/thieves of Erevan Ilesere are also part of the guild
and eager to take on new acolytes. The imposter (from CGR1 The Complete
Spacefarer’s Handbook) wizard kit is practiced heavily and the thief kits
of acrobat, adventurer, burglar, smuggler (safely storing goods in the
guildhall until they are safe to move is a great advantage), spy (all from
the CTHB), and harlequin (from CGR1) are also trained in. For bards
the harlequin (from CGR1), true bard, blade, jongleur, and thespian kits
are available. Both marines (see CGR1) and myrmidons (see the CFHB)
are among the guilds guards. Demi-humans of the appropriate races
can also become mouseburglars, tumblers, buffoons, mercenaries, burglars,
smugglers (all from the CBoG&H), locksmiths, entertainers, and axes
for hire (all from the CBoD). From PO:S&P the kits of acrobat,
weaponmaster, soldier and spy are available. The guild performs burglaries
exclusively, Shareena is not interested in becoming involved in the protection
racket, muggings, picking pockets, and similar crimes. By carefully
focusing on one area they not only achieve a high level of skill in this
specialization but they also avoid possibly losing members due to bad luck
(burglary is an occupation that relies on planing rather than luck).
They do maintain other skills, however, in order to facilitate information
gathering or perform security duties.
Members of the guild are all required to learn the
tightrope walking proficiency and gain the disguise proficiency for free.
Mages learn the spells cantrip (if 1st Edition cantrips are used the cantrips
gather, color, tie, dirty, dusty, hairy, knot, ravel, tangle, tarnish,
untie, change, distract, hide, mute, palm, bluelight, firefinger, smokepuff,
unlock, creak, footfall, groan, moan, rattle, thunp, whistle, and tap are
particularly appropriate), detect magic, read magic, change self, a defensive
spell, and an attack spell. They may begin with even more spells
if the DM wishes. Mages must also learn to read/write common and
most learn spellcraft as well. Anyone trained at the guild (i.e.,
guild members) gains a +2 bonus for every extra NWP slot spent one of the
NWPs disguise, tightrope walking, forgery, rope use, appraising, gem cutting,
jumping, reading lips, tumbling, ventriloquism, running, and spellcraft.
Further the spellcraft proficiency and any rogue group NWP can be learned
at its base cost regardless of the class of the character (Shareena wants
to make sure her people can recognize magic used against them). The
guild can train an unknown number of mages (and other classes) at one time.
Spells of Note:
The thieves specialize in illusions, enchantments
like charms, sleeps, and holds that will allow them to access areas unimpeded,
and a few alterations that will give them access to areas or allow them
to disguise themselves (such as by altering their form). They have
also access to all other types of magic (divinations, abjurations, invocations,
conjurations, etc.), except wild magic.
In addition to magical training the Mages’ Guild
offers several other services. They will ward an area, building,
vessel or object against various effects and intruders as desired by the
customer. This also serves to allow them to know about many of the
protections against intruders and thieves that exist in the city so they
can operate with fewer problems. They will identify items that are
brought to them. Their identifications are the cheapest of any of
the three [known] guilds (350 gp for non-members) but also take the longest
(3 days). This is because the guild wants to know everything about
an item and may even choose to substitute a duplicate item that they’ve
created that has little or no real power if they. Such swindles are
only performed rarely and for the most powerful and useful (to them) items
to avoid the possibility of being caught. The Mages’ Guild also sells
packaged and prepared spell components at prices that are competitive with
the Shapers. Further they don’t limit themselves to spell components
used by invokers so they possess many items that are not generally available
at the Tower of Living Flame. The Mages’ Guild has a network of traders,
smugglers, and fences that they know (though these individuals generally
don’t know who their dealing with beyond an anonymous organization of thieves)
and so are willing to try to fill specific requests for items (magical
or relating to magic) for very high prices. They also purchase magical
items and components for face value or slightly less. The Mages’
Guild sells spell scrolls of certain spells, usually general purpose spells
(like light, dancing lights, and mending) or minor divinations. They
will not sell warding spells of any type, saying this cuts into their business
of casting wards for customers (and it has the two benefits of letting
them know when a mage lacks warding spells since they asked for them and
keeping such spells rarer—allowing them to operate more freely as thieves).
Further they rarely sell invocations, illusions, enchantments, alterations,
and necromantic magics though they do a small business in minor abjurations.
While guild members do not hire out in other capacities a message board
is maintained where for 1 cp/month advertisement for those looking for
mages to hire, to sell goods (such as special magical products and made
to order specialty items), and similar things can post their needs.
Mages of all sorts (you don’t have to be a member as the board is in the
open inside the shop) come by frequently to check the board when looking
for products or employment. Notably the Shapers maintain a sheet
here at all times that lists their services and the location of the Tower
of Living Flame. Some have complained that the guild does not sell
ink, pens, paper of various sorts, empty spellbooks, and the like but they
prefer not to compete with the Scribes’ Guild when it comes to such common
items (they’re actually a thieves’ guild, anyway, the rest is just [profitable]
cover). Finally the guild provides one more service in the form of
entertainment as many of their members perform as simple street entertainers
in order to gather information. Naturally these entertainers do not
seem to have any affiliation with any organization at all and work for
tips and donations. Any other services the guild offers are only
available to members.
In home tutoring is expensive (4) as are purchased
wards (4). Both services allow the guild to case a target and learn
of some of the goods its contains and weaknesses they might exploit in
a burglary and so make money at both ends. The guild only sells items
of magic for outrageous prices (5), except scrolls which they sell for
a much more manageable fee (1500 gp/spell level). The guild does
not sell scrolls of spells over 2nd level except in the most unusual circumstances
(and even then, never over 5th). The guild purchased items at a much
more restrained rate (3). Spell components aren’t cheap (4) but they
are always of the finest quality available. If the quality available
is not the best then the components will be marked so that potential purchases
will know exactly what they’re considering purchasing.
The Pragmatic Order of Thought cell on Dragon Rock
runs their own unofficial school of wizardry. This school is secret
from all but members of the PoTs and certain of their allies. Here
they train mages to help them in their cause and to earn money (some hire
out as helmsman and ship’s mages—which also helps spread their influence
and information resources). The PoTs have located their school in
their secret headquarters on Dragon Rock (they aren’t outlawed but have
been denied the right to form a guild three times). Their headquarters
is a mid-sized boarding house with only 2 above ground stories. In
violation of city law, however, it has three subterranean levels also.
The PoTs use the boarding house (which the original owners of the building
actually used it as) as a cover for moving and housing freed slaves, visitors,
and students. The upper two floors are very usual (though the occupants
aren’t necessarily—the PoTs have had minotaurs, thri-kreen, a gargoyle,
and even a giant eagle stay here before) with the laboratories, spell casting
chambers, libraries, storage rooms, vaults, and the like all concealed
behind a secret door that opens on a stairwell that is the only entrance
to the basement levels. The PoTs only train members of their organization
though they have taken on a few other students from time to time at the
request of a trusted ally.
Things of Note:
The PoTs have the usual array of enemies they do
everywhere, however they also have several allies. The IEN and the
Company of the Chalice are both allies of the PoTs and the IEN ambassador
to Dragon Rock knows of the PoTs’ school. Only a couple individuals
in the Company of the Chalice know of it and they don’t tell other members
of their order out of respect for the PoTs’ requests for secrecy.
The Seekers are also on friendly terms with the PoTs as many Seekers do
not approve of slavery but there are some who view the random acts of violence
and disruption the PoTs cause as a problem to gathering information and
refuse to aid the PoTs. Most of the local good temples, including
those of Tyr and Torm are also PoTs allies and the shrine to Ilmater (tended
by a nameless 5th level painbearer (SP of Ilmater) whose eyes and tongue
have been torn out yet he still seems to see everything clearly) acts as
one of the primary safehouses for freed slaves. The temple of Helm,
however, has no use for the PoTs as they take the law into their own hands
and often disrupt legal activities while trying to aid others. This
has also made them enemies of the local Shapers (who never had much regard
for the PoTs in general anyway). Since slavery is not actually illegal
on Dragon Rock (selling or purchasing a slave and enslaving someone—except
to the state through legal means—are illegal but owning a slave bought
elsewhere is not, also a slave’s children are slaves unless freed by their
master) the PoTs activities in this regard are looked on especially poorly.
Even without legal aid, however, the PoTs have been so successful that
except for the government (whose slaves are also convicted criminals and
prisoners) only a few ambassadors and the occasional visitor even has any
slaves on Dragon Rock.
The PoTs’ secret headquarters is located next to the Small Folk Quarter
(an area of the city mainly inhabited by gnomes and halfling along with
some dwarves, the area is formally known as the Golden Hill District after
the Lords of the Golden Hills, the name of the gnomish pantheon) and has
many allies among the small folk, most of which have been persecuted at
some time and have no love of slavery or slavers. In fact most of
the PoTs’ safehouses on Dragon Rock are located in the Small Folk Quarter
as it is easy to spot anyone out of place who might be trying to locate
As the only place on Dragon Rock where wild
magic can be learned (it is illegal to teach and to use wild magic on Dragon
Rock though it is not illegal to be a wild mage) the few wild mages in
the area are all allies of the PoTs and most have received training from
Head of School: The local head of the PoTs is Windlass Smallhelm
(NG(C) hem F5 D16, uses merchant kit from PO:S&P), an amiable shopkeeper
who has no love for slavery or its practitioners. Were his long thick
hair to be shaved one would discover the tattoo of his former neogi owner.
Windlass is especially active and sees magic as a way to help his cause
while keeping activities safe and secret from the local government.
He has chosen Two-Toes Harry (NG hm W7 I17 W18) to run the school and the
boarding house. Two-Toes is fat, jolly, balding, and spectacled but
he also possess a fine mind and excellent managerial skills. He oversees
daily things like logistics while allowing Trillif “Wildfire” Silverstar
(CG (half-moon, half-aquatic)em W(WM)9 I18 D16) to actually oversee the
magical progress of the students. Trillif has steadily progressed
in magic, even while a Chainmen slave (he was captured while 7th level,
reached 8th before he was freed, and is now 9th), and is extremely adept
at it. His unique lineage gives him a distinct appearance (however
he has all the abilities of a moon elf except he can also swim at 12” for
twice the usual time without tiring). When he was freed by PoTs agents
(one dispelled his charm) he offered to aid the PoTs in instructing in
magic, noting that nowhere else on Dragon Rock could one go to seek instruction
as a wild mage. The PoTs agreed and have not been displeased with
the results. Trillif is well aware of the disadvantages of wild magic
and explains them thoroughly and freely to any interested (especially students
who are trying to decide whether or not to be a wild mage). He prefers
it himself as he believes unpredictability in battle is the key to success
and what can be more unpredictable than the caster not even knowing what
his spells are going to do?
Specialty: Transmuters, Illusionists, Wild Mages; The school
has a high number of transmuters for unknown reasons though the number
of gnomish students is the primary reason they graduate so many illusionists.
Necromancers (white necromancers only), elementalists (especially earth,
air, and fire), abjurers, conjurers, diviners, and enchanters can all receive
training here also, however the PoTs have been unable to locate an invoker
they trust enough to inform the school even exists, let alone ask to teach.
An especially high number of multi- and dual classed mages are trained
here and instructors include half-elves, humans, gnomes, an elf (other
than Trillif), and two xixchil (who are also willing to perform nonmagical
alterations for any who desire it). The arcanist, astronomer, imposter
(all from CGR1 The Complete Spacefarer’s Handbook), peasant wizard, mystic
(both from the CWHB), imagemaker, vanisher, buffoon (all from the CBoG&H),
acrobat, merchant, mystic, peasant hero, smuggler, and spy (all from PO:S&P)
kits are all available to PoTs students.
New Mages: PoTs trained 1st level mages all possess cantrip (if
1st Edition cantrips are used the hairy and color cantrips are especially
appropriate), detect magic, read magic, one attack spell, one defensive
spell, and one miscellaneous spell. Wild mages have the spell Nahal’s
reckless dweomer as their miscellaneous spell. All PoTs mages start
with read/write (common) for free. Additionally if they choose to
learn disguise or spellcraft they gain a +2 bonus rather than the usual
+1 for every extra slot spent on these NWPs when the training was received
at the school. It is unknown (even to the PoTs) how many students
they can train at a time though Trillif estimates he could probably handle
at most 5 apprentice wild mages and 2 advanced wild mages at once if he
needed to. The school generally has a dozen or less students at any
time due to its secretive nature.
Spells of Note:
Partially due to their secrecy the PoTs have a much
more limited selection of spells available to them than the other schools
on Dragon Rock. Gnomish support has allowed them to build up a good
library of illusions and they are well stocked on alteration spells but
their greatest weakness is wild magic spells, which are limited by those
Trillif knows. He only has access to the following wild magic spells
and thus can teach only these, he desires more, however, and would be willing
to trade well for additional wild magic spells: Hornung’s Guess,
Nahal’s Reckless Dweomer, Nahal’s nonsensical nullifier, fireflow, fool’s
speech, and there/not there.
The school offers use of its facilities to members
of the PoTs and occasionally to allies. They will also sell spells
for 1500 gp/level. Other than this their main service is to help
free slaves and oppose slavery. Sometimes they even sponsor expeditions
against slaver posts, neogi, and the like. Such services are highly
valued by slaves but generally hated by the merchants that deal in slavery.
The PoTs have a much more usual apprentice period
than the Shapers as they are not interested in “getting their money’s worth”
out of the apprentices they train (or rather they don’t see a long apprenticeship
as the way to get the value they seek out of an apprentice, this value
is reached when the apprentice is casting spells in support of PoTs operations).
They offer the use of their facilities for the cost of any materials used
and repairs necessary (in other words for free if the mage causes no damage
and supplies their own materials).
The final mage school present on Dragon Rock is
also a secret though this one is official. It is run by the elven
embassy and only open to elves and half-elves that are members of the IEN
or certain allied organizations. The embassy occupies a fortified
woods much like it does on the Rock of Bral, though it does not occupy
as large an area locally. The embassy is surrounded by a 12’ high
wall of solid red stone (it looks like brick only it is all one piece,
not separate pieces put together with mortar) pierced only by 3 gates.
The gates will only open to a hadozee, half-elf (not of drow descent),
or elf (again, not a drow) and are of undamagable brass (guards will open
the gates to permit visitors of other races to enter if they are to be
allowed access). Each gate is filled with loops and curls in the
bars that make no obvious pattern but are quite pretty. The canopy
of the trees reaches down to the wall tops, forming a roof for the area
when viewed by any vessel passing overhead. Elves can see well enough
out of the canopy to note all passersby and their activities but those
outside cannot look in. The entire area is covered in a mythal-like
ward that has protected it from several attempts by local Xenos youths
to damage the forest through the use of flaming oil (these youths all disappeared
within days of their attempted arson and no sign has been found of them,
questions to the elven embassy have met with stony silence and suggestions
that local officials should worry about preventing crimes rather than tracking
down missing criminals they don’t intend to punish). The other effects
of this protection are unknown to those who are not part of the embassy
but detect magic reveals the entire area (including wall and gates—which
never seem to show age or damage) to be covered by a highly magical field
of indeterminate sort.
Things of Note:
The IEN naturally has all the same allies
and enemies here on Dragon Rock that they do elsewhere. Additionally
they have formed close ties with almost all of the local churches (even
the feuding churches of Helm and Tyr). Several of the merchant and
noble houses of the city are elven or half-elven and have close ties with
the IEN as does the Shou embassy. The IEN is also allied with Dragon
Rock itself, similar to their agreement with the Rock of Bral. Dragon
Rock has city on both sides rather than having one side dedicated to farming
but it does have an area of the docks at the rear of the asteroid designated
only for military and diplomatic vessels. Only vessels of foreign
powers here on official business with Dragon Rock or their embassy, vessels
of the Dragon Rock navy, and IEN vessels have permission to use these docks.
The elven embassy keeps at least two flitters here at all times guarded
by a contingent of at least 5 troops (elves, half-elves, or hadozee).
Dragon Rock lacks the jettisons of the Rock of Bral (instead they have
allowed some tinkers gnomes to contract to remove garbage, the gnomes salvage
what they can to use, sell what they can such as selling compostable material
as fertilizer to nearby farming asteroids, and drop the little that’s left
on useless or abandoned asteroids) but do have a few towers with catapults
and ballistae mounted on them for defense. Instead the city relies
on its navy almost completely for defense against outside threats and forces
so they also maintain a large contingent of guards that protect the entire
docks at all times. The elves on duty here will usually aid the local
troops in case of a serious problem.
As might be expected of an elven school of magic,
bladesingers, infiltrators, minstrels, war wizards, and collectors are
trained here along with other types of elven spellcasters. Additionally
many spellfilchers, infiltrators, and the like are sent here for part of
their training due to the unique opportunities an open city provides (any
profession that needs to learn to operate amid other races and in mixed
societies). The school is not actually just for mages as elves and
half-elves of all classes are trained here (though here we focus only on
the magical portions of the school). Most of the students here are
multi-classed though a few single classed generalist and specialist wizards
are also present. The exact composition of the instructors varies
often due to normal rotations of elven personnel but bladesinging in longsword
is always available and shortsword bladesinging is frequently available
also. All the elven mage kits can be learned here at all times.
It is rumored (by those who even know of their existence) that at least
one elven high mage is resident at the embassy. This suggests that
the weave is not as damaged this far from Toril itself and that High Magic
may function better here.
Head of School:
The elven ambassador to Dragon Rock is Yulanda
Greensprig (CG (moon)ef F12/W12 I18 W16 D18 Ch18 (due to ring of human
influence, actual Ch unknown but high), uses bladesinger kit—longsword)
and her husband and chief negotiator is the diplomat Kiiran Greensprig
(CG (moon)em SP10 of Corellon Larethian I16 W18 Ch16, uses diplomat kit
from CGR1 The Complete Spacefarer’s Handbook). They are in charge
of everything that goes on with the embassy but aren’t involved much with
the actual training of students other than to oversee it as one of their
areas of responsibility. Training of students is left up to individual
instructors which varies often due to operations shifts, troop rotations,
and the like. Thus most students will have more than one instructor
before they graduate. The elves see this as a good thing since the
student can learn from more than one individual and thus gain more overall
Diviners, Enchanters, Air Elementalists, Wild
Mages; In addition to these magical specialties (which are available to
elves and half-elves, half-elves can learn to be transmuters and conjurers
also and these options are open to them at the embassy) the elven kits
listed in the CboE are also available as are any kits the DM deems appropriate
from other sources (military kits are especially appropriate). The
church of Aerdrie Faenya has several air elementalists among its clergy
which is why so many air elementalists are trained here (not to mention
their general usefulness to spelljamming vessels).
Mages trained at the embassy are almost all part
of the elven fleet or some other elven organization (such as a bladesinger
or spellfilcher guild) and so receive several benefits beyond what they
would normally have access to. First they begin with the spells cantrip
(or a book of cantrips if 1st Edition cantrip rules are used and they so
desire), detect magic, read magic, sleep, one [more] attack spell, 2 defensive
spells, and 1 miscellaneous spell. They may begin with even more
spells if the DM so decides or it is appropriate to their mission.
They can all speak elvish and common and read/write common and Espruar
for free. Spelljamming, spacemanship, and spellcraft are heavily
stressed and those students that choose to spend additional slots on these
proficiencies gain a +2 bonus per additional slot spent with that proficiency
(instead of the usual +1 bonus). It is unknown how many students
can be handled by the embassy at one time and this no doubt varies due
to personnel rotations. As most training is advanced training rather
than initial training this has never been a problem.
Spells of Note:
Elven spells along with an extremely varied
array of usual and all spelljamming spells can be taught here. Elven
spells can be found in the CBoE, Wizard’s Spell Compendiums, Elves of Evermeet,
and various Realms sources. Of particular note however, is the 3rd
level moonglow spell found in VGttN which is taught to many spellfilchers
(among others). Its ability to copy runes without activating them
can be essential to elven thieves that are trying to determine the purpose
and/or powers of a rune or glyph so they can return later to deal with
it. Copy spells are also highly valued by spellfilchers for obvious
reasons. Rumors also hold that an extremely powerful elven mage resides
at the embassy. Those in the know about such things have suggested
this may be a high mage.
The embassy not only trains members of the
IEN but also provides training to some of the local elves and half-elves
on Dragon Rock (and to some of the local hadozee when it comes to nonmagical
skills). Non-IEN mages only gain one attack and one defensive spell,
however. The embassy also offers all the usual services an embassy
deals in and individual members of the embassy occasionally deal in certain
sidelines (spells, spell components, etc.). As the combined church
of the Seldarine is located on embassy grounds, religious services are
provided to those that worship the Seldarine or its members.
Prices: Tutoring non-IEN members is performed for a moderate
fee (3) though students are screened (elves living in human society and
not part of the IEN or some other elven organization are not nearly as
trusted as more usual elves). Other service fees will be set by whoever
is being dealt with.
The Path and the Way:
The church of the Path and the Way does not run
a mage school but due to their large numbers of wu-jen (whether using the
kit from the CWHB or the class from Oriental Adventures) they have been
considering establishing a school for wu-jen. There are large numbers
of Dragon Rock citizens of Shou and Kozakuran and some of Waan descent
and Shou vessels put in at Dragon Rock regularly. Most of these folk
patronize the Path and the Way’s local temple. The church is also
seen as being heavily supported by the dwarves (due to the presence of
numerous korobukuru) and they have wu-jen among their numbers (this is
recommended only if the class from OA is used and not if a kit is used
instead). The government of Dragon Rock does not want to anger the
dwarves, especially with a powerful dwarven citadel so close by (the Whitestone
Citadel, see Dungeon Adventures #28). It is thus highly likely that
if the church decided to establish a school they would be given permission
to by the government.
1. Graduates from the Tower of Living Flame, including
at least one diviner or generalist mage with divination spells, that work
for the government are asked to try to hunt down a mysterious group of
burglars and thieves that have been extremely successful but have never
been caught. They have broken into numerous well protected buildings
and even vessels docked in port and no sign of them or the stolen goods
has ever been recovered. Naturally the PCs are hunting for the members
of the Three Stars Academy. The Three Stars headquarters building
itself is shielded from all magical divination and scrying along with teleportation
and extra-planar entry magics. This will cause most divinations to
fail outright when the culprits are hiding back in their headquarters.
Additionally the city has asked for Shareena and the Mages Guild to aid
them in magically locating the thieves so the guild is able to easily track
the PCs’ actions through their superiors. Should the PCs figure out
their actions are being leaked the guild will begin a careful mundane surveillance
before turning to magical means to keep a close watch on the PCs.
They will also set up patsies for the PCs to catch. First they will
try to frame visiting thieves and those unaffiliated with any particular
guild and direct the PCs’ investigation towards chosen scapegoats.
Failing that they will begin choosing local rivals in other thieves’ guilds.
Only as a last resort will they halt activities for a time to help throw
the PCs off. If the PCs still won’t leave well enough alone a few
sleep, web, and hold spells might cause them to become easy prey to slavers.
In this case perhaps it is the very PoTs the PCs dislike that will have
to save them.
2. Graduates of the Tower of the Living Flame
are assigned to work on city naval vessels guarding the city and nearby
farming and mining asteroids. They will face threats like a rogue
krajen, a school of scavvers that have been menacing a colony, a neogi
mindspider on a slaving run, and a gnomish sidewheeler that has broken
down and has autognomes on board that will attack any non-gnome they encounter,
even if ordered otherwise. They might even have the chance to rescue
a diplomatic envoy’s vessel from the batship itself!
3. Graduates of the Academy are asked to help
conduct a survey of the Tears of Selune which have never been properly
or completely mapped. In addition to the dangers suggested in scenario
2, above, they will have to deal with actually passing by the lair of the
batship, local bases of other powers (such as neogi and illithids), and
any other creatures that inhabit the asteroid field. If they are
successful they might be asked to join an informative mission to Anadia
to visit its halflings or even to head to other spheres.
4. Graduates of the Academy could easily be
pitted against the group in scenario 1, above, possibly even allowing the
searchers to be another group of PCs. Additionally their usual life
of thievery, spying, information gathering, and attempting to avoid the
authorities and their victims should make for any number of adventures.
5. Members of the PoTs are asked to help alter
the appearance of freed slaves so they can be gotten off Dragon Rock.
Perhaps they merely need to get to port where the elves have arranged for
a Sindiath Line vessel to take them to their new (or possibly old) lives.
However getting a mixed group of all types of species and races and classes
out of the Small Folk Quarter unnoticed will be no easy matter. Perhaps
the PCs are even expected to transport hem to a rendezvous in space or
perhaps to their next destination or destinations where they will be handed
off to other PoTs who will continue to move them along. To complicate
matters at least one freed slave is being sought by agents of a rival family
member that arranged for them to be enslaved in the first place (the relative
learned of the escape) while another is formerly a member of a criminal
organization of vast power and reach, perhaps even a former member of the
Tenth Pit, Xenos, or Chainmen, who also have agents out looking now that
their former member is free again.
6. Students of the elven embassy on Dragon Rock are
given several minor missions to perform in the city. These are tests
of their skills and meant to get them used to operating in crowded areas
and with members of innumerable species. These should be role-playing
opportunities where combat is unlikely and best avoided. In fact
they may fail the test they are being given if they resort to violence.
To better evaluate the students and ensure their safety one or more experienced
elves will follow them invisibly or in disguise. Once they’ve proven
themselves on these minor tasks they will be given more important tasks,
including taking the embassy’s flitters (which do not have magical means
of propulsion) to a nearby asteroid to investigate some occurrence.
Perhaps they will discover a hidden watch post of scro with no more than
a dozen scro troops (all 1st level as these are not yet front-line scro
warriors), a single corporal (an experienced 3rd level warrior with his
own wheellock pistol and arquebus!), and a warpriest in training (2nd level
as both a mage and a priest). They can succeed by either reporting
their discovery without the scro learning of it or by carefully overwhelming
the scro themselves. Or perhaps they discover a hermit who simply
wants to be left alone (in which case role-playing may be required to avoid
annoying but not life threatening problems). As the students grow
in power and experience and their instructors gain more confidence in them
they will be given more and more important tasks (and ones with more and
more danger—and reward). Perhaps they are even assigned to aid the
local PoTs in some manner.
7. An experienced wu-jen or priest of the Path
and the Way could easily become involved in convincing the heads of the
church on Dragon Rock to establish a school for training wu-jen.
Pitfalls would include resistance within the church itself and among many
of the local wu-jen (who came up in a master-apprentice relationship and
believe that is the only way to teach their skills, without them there
can be no school as there would be no instructors), gaining funding for
the school, political battles to gain a permit, and possible minor vandalism
and terror tactics by other local churches and magic schools that fear
the establishment of an allied church and magic school.
Conversion for use elsewhere:
All these schools can be easily converted for use
in other cities on magical worlds such as Toril and Oerth. They would
not be appropriate for Ansalon on Krynn but Taladas is perfect for their
incorporation. A few specific ideas geared towards the Realms follow
for each of the schools presented.
The Tower of Living Flame:
This school is perfect for placement in any city that has mages in its
guard, watch, and military forces. It is also perfect for conversion
to a military training academy. Calimshan or Tethyr (newly united
or still suffering from the division brought on by its civil war) are particularly
suited to its placement as they are highly magical areas where magic is
not dominant (such as Halruaa). Of course the Shapers Guild would
simply be a local organization of mages rather than a Realms-spanning organization
of affiliated invokers like the Shapers are in the Spelljammer setting
(unless the DM decided otherwise, naturally).
The Academy of Knowledge:
The Academy lends itself well to placement in Nimbral where it would be
run by the church of Gond rather than the Seekers. It could also
be incorporated into a site like Candlekeep where a center of learning
and knowledge already exists. Similarly it could be run by the clergy
of Thoth in Mulhorand.
The Three Stars:
The Three Stars is perfect for placement in any highly magical Realm.
Nimbral and Halruaa both come to mind though the racial make-up of the
guild may have to be altered to account for this. It would not fit
well in Thay due to the existing school structure in that realm that would
require it to declare affiliation with some school (and thus be overseen
by it). Similarly Mulhorand’s magical domination by the Church of
Thoth makes it inappropriate for this Realm.
The PoTs: The
PoTs are perfect for establishment in Thay, Zhentil Keep, Calimshan, the
Old Empires, and any other realm where slavery is allowed. It could
also exist in nearby areas and perform equally well just as Dragon Rock
doesn’t truly support slaving.
The Elven Embassy:
Any embassy of Evermeet or Evereska would be appropriate for inclusion
of this guild or any elven school out side an elven realm such as in Silverymoon
or any of several cities in the area of the Elven Forest (Cormanthyr) could
be based on this model if the overt political portions (those parts based
on it being an embassy) are removed.
The Path and the Way: Any church that wishes to establish
a school of magic in a foreign culture where it has some presence could
be in this position. For instance Thoth’s church in Chessenta or
Unther might face these trials. If they were overcome and the school
made a success Thoth’s influence would grow in the region. As its
influence grew it would face increasing resistance from other faiths and
groups (while Mystra’s followers would not oppose the spread of magical
training Azuth’s have been know to show open enmity to any group they consider
rivals). They could also try to further expand, possibly even establishing
a contract with the local government like the Shapers have on Dragon Rock
to train mages for them.