The Wreck of the Compass Rose

A Dungeons & Dragons Short

“Hear the cooing of my cries, a haunting hymn to guide your way,
Through the cavern’s echoing sighs, where light and hope are led astray.
In my gaze, your doom lies, yet in my song, you wish to stay,
For the sweetest of goodbyes, is a harpy’s charming serenade.”

Hymn of the Deceptive Wings (Harpy’s Song)

In the realm of mystical echoes and fantastical wonders, aboard The Wreck of the Compass Rose, our gallant band of adventurers beheld a grotesque monstrosity – a beast seemingly woven from the raw threads of a nightmare, bearing a chilling resemblance to a colossal vulture. Its abhorrent cry, a discordant symphony of aggression and malice, rent the air. The ghastly creature sought to deter the intrepid heroes from their path, but failing to do so, it leapt into the maelstrom of battle. Its talons, jagged as winter’s frost, cleaved into Nightsong, leaving the taste of pain and fury in his soul. Unfazed, Wey-Tan’s yew longbow found its mark, the well-honed shaft burrowing into the bestial body of the creature, as did Wonder’s deadly quarrel from his trusty crossbow.

Suddenly, a second harpy entered the fray, its arrival marked by a quarrelsome discourse with its wounded kin. Its enchanting song then weaved an insidious melody, ensnaring the minds of Wonder, Arlent, and Nightsong, casting them under its eldritch charm. Arlent, in particular, succumbed to the irresistible allure of the bird’s serenade, clumsily stumbling over the debris strewn across the deck, until gravity claimed him, plunging him into the icy embrace of the waters below. Wey-Tan, ever the steadfast archer, launched another arrow, dealing a crippling blow to the already injured beast. Yet, the creature continued to bewitch the heroes with its beguiling song.

Shaking off the enigmatic haze of the melody, Nightsong summoned his reservoirs of strength, pouncing on one of the harpies. He drove it with such wrath that the creature shattered through the deck’s wooden barrier, plunging into the ship’s lower level. Nightsong, with a primal roar, brought his staff crashing down, extinguishing the life force of the monstrous creature.

Arlent, bruised and battered, surrounded himself in the protective aura of his self-casted mage armor spell. Wonder fell under the assault of one of the beasts, only to be revived shortly after by Wey-Tan. Arlent channeled his arcane powers to summon a Firebolt, targeting the injured harpy, yet only managing to singe a few of its feathers, earning a questioning glance from Nightsong.

As if their trials weren’t arduous enough, the heroes were now confronted by a horror from the grave – a relentless undead. The gnarled zombie narrowly missed Nightsong, before it set upon the carcass of the slain harpy, ripping into its flesh with morbid hunger.

Meanwhile, Dave The Barbarian, having just entered the fray, developed an odd fixation with the number four and was nearly laid low by the harpy. Nightsong swiftly returned to the main deck, ending the life of the remaining bird. Arlent postulated that the entrancing melody of the harpies might be the catalyst for the spate of shipwrecks plaguing the area. With their immediate quest fulfilled, the heroes deliberated between descending into the ship’s depths to face the undead and pillage its treasures or regrouping at their camp.

While they pondered, Wey-Tan fired an arrow into the shadows below, and Dave the Barbarian began hurling debris. Emboldened by his recent triumphs, Nightsong hurtled below, dealing thunderous blows to the zombie and the ghoul. His attack was complemented by Wey-Tan’s arrow, finding a home in the zombie’s neck, and Arlent’s fiery spell, reducing the undead beast to smoldering cinders, though it still lurched about ominously.

Simultaneously, Wonder, intrigued by the secrets of the ship, discovered four unexplored doors. Dave the Barbarian shattered the most intriguing portal, while Nightsong dealt the final blow to the zombie – his fourth victorious strike of the day. After scrutinizing the remaining doors, they unearthed a peculiar collection of curios and glittering gold. They speculated that the undead adversaries they vanquished earlier might have once been part of the ship’s crew.

Delving deeper into the bowels of the ship, they faced two more zombies. As Dave the Barbarian, Arlent, and Wey-Tan battled the new foes, Nightsong ventured further into the ship’s recesses, and Wonder, in a moment of respite, savored a bottle of rum found amidst the chaos.