The Cyst of Darkness

Beneath the sewers of Safeharbour a natural system of fractures were enlarged and colonised by a group of illithids. Here they kept Aleanor Pathsteader captive.

1. The Entry

The air in the tunnel is warm and laden with moisture. It is dark but a very faint purple glow emanates from the walls. The still humidity smells unpleasantly of onion and cinnamon. A resinous, sickly violet mucous coats the walls of this tunnel. Whorls and striation visible in the coating give rise to vague feelings of nausea. The floor of the cavern is covered in clear, ankle-deep water; the water smells faintly of salt. Here and there, small tadpole like creatures swim unconcernedly in the warm liquid.

2. Tadpole Feeding Station

Several empty glass jars lay strewn about this chamber, half submerged, in the ever-present briny fluid covering the floor. The tadpole-like creatures swimming through the water seem thicker here. Along the curve of the north-eastern wall, a large wooden trough sits slowly rotting from its contact with the water. A wide-headed mallet hangs from a metal hook in the wall to one side of the trough a ghastly smell of death wafting up from within it.

3 Urophion Sentry


A strange cross-breed; half illithid half roper defends the junction.

4. Thrall Chamber

A low wall constructed of irregular blocks of stone and coarse lime mortar runs across the passage beyond is a near vertical drop into a large unlit oval chamber. You can just make out the forms of large wood and rusty iron cages hanging from the ceiling while in the darkness below you can hear the movement of several creatures speaking in a strange guttural tongue. The smell of rotting flesh and other unsavoury items billows up from the cave below the floor of which must be at least thirty or even forty feet below the entrance in which you stand.

5. Illithid Chambers

The area ahead is higher than most of the other tunnels and free of the stagnant briny fluid. Purplish resin, however, does streak the tunnels. In fact, it appears that some thought was put into shaping the ectoplasm before it died, as the mucus forms crude furniture. Three indentations filled with moss are on set into the east wall of the chamber. At the foot of each indentation sits a pair of two-lobed boots. Above the pads, a resinous rod supports several cloth garments on metal hooks. In the centre of the chamber, three rough shaped chairs surround a circular mucosal platform 2½ feet high. Many sheaves of striated parchment lie in neat stacks upon this central desk.

6. Aides’ Chambers

Similar to location #5.

7. Shuluth’s Chamber

This chamber possesses all the attributes described in room 5 though it has only one sleeping area and chair next to the mucosal “desk.”
Standing confidently in the centre of the chamber beside a mucosal desk covered with pages of parchment stands a seven and a half foot tall mind-flayer. Like those you encountered on the street it wears the black leather-like suit and the goggles with dark glass lenses. Its six tentacles are tipped with slender metal blades; these tentacles move sinuously like strands of kelp under a heavy sea. Beside it stands a smaller illithid, wearing a flared purple robe, its tentacles lacking the metal extensions that grace those of its taller companion.
Behind her a dim radiance shines through a resinous wall that forms the south-eastern margin of the chamber and small noises emerge from behind it.

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