30 CAVERN OF THE LAKE. This large cavern (ceiling about twenty feet above floor level) contains a lake of clear fresh water. The most notable features are an island with a man sitting on it and a central whirlpool or vortex violently spinning in the center of the lake (the black circle). Four ghouls prowl the sandy shore.
4 Ghouls (AC 6; MV 9"; HD 2; hp 6, 8, 9, 11; #AT 2 claws, 1 bite; D 1-3/1-3/1-6; SA Paralysis; SD Limited spell immunity; XP 77, 81, 83, 87)
The young man sitting on the sandy island is the former king of the nation of Flortencia, far to the west.
Santallion Dosflorontimo, son of the God of Rivers, Chaotic Good male Fighter (AC 9; MV 12"; F4; hp 24; #AT 1; D Long sword; S 14, I 13, W 13, D 15, C 15, Ch 17; SD Latent magic use; XP 210)
Santallion is a likable young man who has no idea that he is born of divine heritage. The God of Rivers saw Santallion's mother Isabella at a fete aboard the royal barge and was consumed with passion for her. The god visited Isabella on her wedding night, after putting the real king, Mendagion Dosflorotimo, in a sorcerous slumber. Nine months later, the young Santallion was born, believing all the while that the human king was his father. After the death of Mendagion, a notable tyrant, Santallion ascended the throne, but he proved too humane and naïve to rule for long. Within a month, his father's younger brother Mertallion had succeeded in ousting him in a coup d'etat, and Santallion was forced to flee for his very life. Eventually he found his way to Castle Triskelion, where he was granted sanctuary by the Triskelion family, believing they may be able to use the situation to their advantage at a later date. Since the ruin of the castle, Santallion has experienced many adventures and misadventures, eventually ending up here.
He wears a suit of clothing suitable for a nobleman, though it has seen wear and tear. His long sword is jewel encrusted and worth 7500 gold crescents. Santallion has the following abilities due to his divine nature, though he is completely unaware of them:
- Water breathing
- Enable others (up to three persons per day) to breathe water, lasting for 24 hours before requiring renewal
- Walk on water
- Swim in water at double his normal land movement rate
- Speak with and understand the language of all animals and creatures that dwell in rivers or other freshwater, or which require rivers for their livelihood, such as waterfowl
- Animals and creatures of four hit dice or fewer that dwell in or around rivers will obey his commands. Those of more than four hit dice, or which possess significant free will (such as nixies) are not compelled to serve, but will never attack Santallion unless they are attacked first
- Creatures from the elemental plane of water will also never initiate combat with Santallion, and will have a +50% reaction adjustment to him
As mentioned, Santallion is currently unaware of these powers. He is aware that he is an excellent, untiring swimmer. He could escape the island, but fears the ghouls. Although he can talk to river and lake animals he has never done so before. Actually they are always silent when near him, as a sign of respect and would not strike up a conversation, although they will readily reply to him, or he might overhear a conversation, if they didn't know he was about.
The vortex in the center of the lake drains to Area 23 on Level 3A Salt Mere. Anyone approaching within ten feet of the vortex who is not an excellent swimmer (such as Santallion or a giant water beetle) will be sucked into it. Traveling this route does 4d4 damage of crushing and smothering. Those who can water breathe suffer only 2d4 damage.
The lake contains three giant water beetles. All of the lake water should be considered holy water owing to the fact that the God of Rivers urinated in it when he came to look in on Santallion while his son was sleeping. This explains why the ghouls will not swim to the island. The holy water may be collected and used by party members, but will lose its qualities within a turn if not stored in a special blessed crystal container. The lake has a depth of up to fifteen feet and is stocked with a good supply of fish. It is fed by springs from below so even the vortex does not empty it.
3 Giant Water Beetles (AC 3; MV 3”//12”; HD 4; hp 13, 17, 21; #AT 1 bite; D 3-18; XP 137, 153, 169)
These creatures will happily obey Santallion, if he so commands.