The Light in the Darkness
God of goblins
Maglubiyet is the god of all goblin kind -including goblins, hob-goblins and bugbears. He rules from the center of the hellish city of Grashmog. Here is an indepth description of what the players experienced:
You wake with a start from a fitful sleep to the ringing echoes of steel hitting steel and blood curdling screams of creatures in agony. Foul black smoke blinds you and burns your lungs. Your guts turn to ice as panic begins to take you. You reach out to find something familiar, to find a wall or a door or maybe the window. You try to call out to one of your fellow adventurers but the burning smoke makes speech impossible. Your mind races, is the inn under attack? Has there been a fire? But even as you ask yourself these questions a terrified corner of your mind begins to suspect that you are no longer in the inn and something has gone horribly wrong.
A hand grabs your own. You try to pull away but the small leathery hand is strong and holds firm. It starts to pull you gently, wanting you to move. Desperate for answers you allow yourself to be pulled forward. The foul smoke begins to clear a bit as you walk and as the smoke clears you see that you are indeed no longer in the inn and are now in a place straight of a nightmare.
You appear to be in a city, but it is not city like any city you’ve ever seen. As the dense low hanging smoke parts, you begin to make out insane and fantastic buildings that rise up around you. Made of brick and bone and found objects, the precariously built structures tower several stories above you, ponderously leaning into each other and out over the street. Some of the bones are massive, a rib cage the size of a castle looms off in the distance covered in tattered banners. The banners have symbols on them, you see a bleeding eye, a clawed finger surrounded by fire, a skull impaled on a sword..
You look up to the sky to search for the sun, something familiar, but the only sky you see, when you can see through the cloying black smoke, is colored an angry red, the color of an infected wound just before it begins to consume the flesh around it. The hand pulling yours tugs at you and you look down to see who the owner is. A goblin dressed in robes made of leathery pale skin looks back at you, grins a huge toothy grin and says in rough common, “Welcome, most honored guest to the realm of Clangor! I hope you enjoy your time here in the great city of Grashmog! It is very rare for the likes of you to be granted an audience with the Most Profane, the Heart of Battle. Come, it would be very bad if we were late!”
The part of you that wants to snatch your hand away wars with the part that has a thousand questions, but you find yourself unable to do anything but be pulled along as you are dragged down a narrow ally and out into a large thoroughfare. Your feelings of panic and terror increase sharply as you see the source of the horrific sounds of death and battle. The street before you is a riot of goblinoid activity. Hordes of scrambling goblins, militant hobgoblins and massive bugbears push, fight and kill for every square inch of space. At first you think you are seeing a great battle taking place, but then realize this isn’t a battle, the overcrowded street is simply filled with creatures trying to get from one place to the next and willing to use whatever means it takes to get there. Other creatures move through the crushing hordes, horrific creatures of impossible size and shape, all teeth and claws and ruined flesh. Your mind refuses to dwell on these horrors, forcing you to look away before terror utterly overwhelms you. The angry press of goblinkin part before you and your diminutive guide. All the creatures within eye site stop what they are doing; including those in the process of killing one another, to glare at you in outright shock and pure unadulterated hatred as you pass within inches of their foul smelling bodies and heaving rancid breath. But you do pass and miraculously move through the city of Grashmog unmolested.
However, the countless horrors of Grashmog soon begin to weigh heavily on you and everything becomes a blur. Eventually you notice that the sound of thousands of creatures battling to occupy the same space has faded to a faint din, and now you can hear music playing. You are in a massive corridor made of iron, bolts the size of your head line the walls vertically in regular intervals stretching up fifty feet or so to form a massive arched ceiling, also made of iron. The vast corridor is dimly lit but you cannot identify the source. The black smoke is here as well, thick clouds that move of their own accord.
The sound of music begins to get louder as it appears you are moving towards it. It is not an unpleasant sound, almost resembling a waltz but with a slightly increased tempo. The sound is mechanical, like someone has tipped the lid of a giant music box.
And then you find yourself at the opening of a massive room also made of cold iron. To your left and right the walls bow outward in a massive oval and consist of 3 tiers, each about ten feet above the one beneath it, the walls stretch out further than you can see in the dim light and smoke. On the tiers are creatures of every race, shape and size and all of them are dancing, or attempting to dance. There are massive giants, dozens of orcs, many goblins, humans, elves, several of the horrific creatures that are all teeth and odd joints and ruined flesh that you previously saw walking Grashmog’s streets, and a few things that look long dead, yet somehow still dance.
In the room’s center is a massive 20-foot tall smoldering throne of iron and steel that is regularly belching huge clouds of black smoke into the air. Sitting upon the throne is the fattest, bloated, largest goblin that has ever existed, though its skin is a pale pasty white instead of the normal green. Standing, the creature must be 10 feet tall, 6 feet of that being stomach. Sitting, as it is now, its massive stomach stretches like a grotesque balloon, overflowing the huge thrown. Beady eyes flicker about the room from within the folds of fat, chins too numerous to count hang sickly and rest on the creature’s gut. On the creature’s head is a crown of bone and steel. It holds a horned scepter in its chubby clawed hands that it uses to direct the music and occasionally points at a dancer. Those that do not dance to its liking are bedeviled with angry stinging swarms of bloated wasps or choking black clouds of smoke. Resting against the side of the throne in a small pool of blood is a massive black double bladed axe that is weeping blood.
Next to the throne is a massive music machine. A goblin in black smudged red robes turns a crank that spins a huge 5-foot wide horizontal metal disk with small holes punched into it. As the holes pass over metal tines music is made. Next to the music machine is a rack holding 4 more disks.
The goblin leading you stops before the throne. For the first time you realize that you are not alone, your fellow adventurers are standing alongside you, each looking dazed and overwhelmed. Your point of view lurches with a sickening motion. One moment you are seeing the world from your own eyes, the next you see the world from the fighter’s tall perspective, then the elf’s long view, everything up close being blurry, and then you are outside of all six, floating above and seeing the events unfold from afar. This sickening lurching perspective continues making you all a bit sick to your metaphysical stomachs.
The goblin (despite being 6 of you there is only 1 goblin) that led you through the city steps up to the throne and says:
“Behold, lord of the thousand deaths, great Maglubiyet, those that you requested have arrived!” The goblin bows deeply and stays that way, head almost touching the floor.
The massive creature on the throne waves the scepter one more time sending a swarm of angry wasps to sting a collapsed elf nearby and then looks down at you and chuckles deeply, the rolls of flat moving ponderously.
“Welcome to Grashmog of great pink fleshed heroes. I hope you are enjoying my kingdom. I wonder if you know why you are here.”
As Maglubiyet talks, he begins to slowly stand, the process of getting that much flesh into motion takes a while. When his feet hit the floor you can feel the ground shake.
“You helped one of my kind. A goblin acting as my direct servant in the realms. By giving Sancossug a boon of life and in doing so a boon to the tribes he leads you gave a boon to me.”
[[Maglubiyet frowns and shakes his head.]]
“By the laws that govern the heavens such a boon cannot go unaddressed. It sickens me to do this. I never expected such good (disgust) creatures like yourselves to ever allow my kind to walk away and live. This will never happen again, by every oath I know, I do swear it. But that still leaves the boon and the debt owed.”
By now, Maglubiyet is standing in front of you, his fat giant goblin body towers 10 feet in the air.
“You call yourself the Unstoppable goblin stoppers, I wonder if you will live long enough to appreciate the full irony of your words. Know this Unstoppables” Maglubiyet’s voice takes on the unmistakable sound of power, a level of power you have never experienced before, it thrums through your bodies in waves. “From this point forward no goblin or goblin-kind will ever raise a hand to you in violence or to do you direct harm.” As he talks he reaches out his enormous hand, grabs a fellow adventurer’s arm and casually sinks a claw into the underside of the forearm, a slight hissing sound fills the air. When he reaches you, you cannot move, the fear building in you screams for you to act but you stand powerless before the god of goblins. He grabs your arm and sinks his claw into the underside; you hear a hiss and smell a foul odor but feel nothing. As he lets your arm drop you briefly glimpse the damage, you see a double-bladed battle-axe weeping blood tattooed into the pale flesh.
“Each of you will bare my mark. This mark will keep all goblinkin from harming you. However, one of you should hold the contract. It is only proper. Luckily I have been given an ample canvas.”
Brother Hammond is the last in line. When Maglubiyet grabs Hammond’s arm there is an instant sound of sizzling, like bacon hitting hot grease, white smoke starts to roll off Hammond’s arm. At first, as the sickly sweet smell of burning flesh reaches you, you think that Hammond is being tortured, but you quickly realize, as Maglubiyet sets to work on the priest’s large forearm, that what you are smelling is not Hammond, but the smell of a god burning. The god’s flesh burns as it meets the spiritual flesh dedicated to the god of sun and law. As Maglubiyet finishes he lets his grip linger, the smoke from his burning flesh coming fast and thick. He looks Hammond directly in the eye, the full weight of a god bearing down on him and says, “I do so hope you violate this contract. I will personally be watching and waiting for one of you to do so. Just one. When that day comes, and if I have ANY say, it will come, the entire goblin nation will move against you. This.. will.. not.. stand.” And with those words he carefully places Brother Hammond’s arm back by his side and walks to his throne and sits heavily.
He sits and stares at you, an angry petulant expression on his face. Finally he sighs a heavy sigh and addresses you one last time.
“Leave now. The next time I see you it will be your physical bodies, put in chains and placed before me. I will personally see each of you skinned alive, but before that, you will dance for me. Oh, how you will dance.”
And as those words echo in your mind you are once again overcome by thick black smoke that belches from the iron throne.
- When the players wake up each, except Hammond have a tattoo, fully healed on the underside of the forearm. The tattoo depicts a bloody double-bladed axe (one of the symbols of Maglubiyet).
- Brother hammond has a contract carved into his arm. Part tattoo, part scar tissue, it is a detailed account of the players new relationship with all of golblinkind.
- Players discover that they can now read and speak goblin.
- Contract says the following:
Beware, all of goblin kind, the original members of the Everlasting Goblin Stoppers have been marked friends of Maglubiyet. No goblin shall raise a hand to them or in any way cause them harm, no matter the provocation. Any goblin that violates this pact will be called to Grashmog to face Maglubiyet’s wrath. Should the goblin friends, the Everlasting Goblin Stoppers raise a hand or otherwise knowingly cause harm to any goblin kin they will end the friendship and cause this contract to become null and void. Furthermore, cancelling this contract will bring about the immediate and complete wrathful vengeance of the Lord of the Iron Throne, Master of the Killing Cloud, Lord of all goblins and goblin kind, Maglubiyet.