The Burning Plague Area 3
The Mess Hall
A closed wooden door serves as the entryway into the mess hall. Once the dining quarter of the mine, this area has now been made into a watch post for the skaven warband. Once the PCs open the door (it is not locked) and enter into the room, read the following description aloud:
This large, square room houses four long wooden tables, each with a bench on either side. Anything else that was once in this room has been broken and scattered. In the southeast corner of the room, a small stewpot steams over a fireplace carved into the floor. A pungent odor hangs in the air.
Ratmen crowd the room in various stages of preparation for your entry. One beast has a green, glowing pack on his back with a long narrow tube attached and pointing in your direction.GM Info
The stew inside the pot and in the wooden bowls is a particularly foul concoction, made of some of the rotting foodstuffs from the storeroom in Area 4 and mixed with bits of meat from the rats the Skaven have caught. If the foul smell of the stew combined with the inability to identify its contents does not discourage the player characters from giving it a taste, it is necessary to mention that the stew, given its diseased contents, is contagious.
The only two exits from this room are the door to the east leading to Area 2 and a passageway leading north for 20 feet to Area 4. As was the case in Area 2, the lanterns in this room are smashed and the only source of light here is the soft glow emanating from the smoldering embers in the fireplace.
If the PCs have not already warned them of their presence, either by setting off the trap in Area 2 or by being particularly noisy on their way to Area 3 (i.e. coming down the corridor wearing full plate, conversing loudly, casting a spell outside the door, etc.), they will encounter a large number of Creatures here.
Nine (or more*) Skaven have stationed themselves in this room. If the PCs were noisy in the passageway between Areas 2 and 3, make a single Listen check for the Skaven to determine if they have been alerted. If successful, five of the Skaven will Sneak, withdrawing to Area 4 to prepare an ambush while the others stay behind to delay the progress of the adventurers. The same thing will have occurred if the PCs activated the stone trap in Area 2, only there is no need for a Listen check nor will the Skaven need to Sneak to reach Area 3 without drawing attention to themselves.
Alternately, if the PCs have managed to reach the door to Area 3 without alerting the Skaven to their presence, they may make a Listen check themselves. Success indicates that they can hear the Skaven banter on the other side of the door as they eat and talk with one another.
Skills: As Skaven in the Bestiary
Contagious: Individuals who come into contact with a contagious object or creature must succeed in a Disease check or become infected with the Burning Plague.
Tactics: If the Skaven hear the player characters in the tunnel connecting Areas 2 and 3, they will be armed and ready. The skaven with the warpfire thrower will have it pointed at the doorway. *For the enjoyment of the experience, the warpfire thrower can explode the first time the Skaven try to use it. This would even the odds a bit. If this is the case, the GM may want to stock the room with even more Skaven; they will die in the explosion anyway.
Conversely, if the Skaven are not prepared for the player characters’ entrance, they will be forced into melee combat due to the lack of time to load and ready their missile weapons. In this scenario, the Skaven charge their opponents, hoping to get the better of them with sheer numbers. They attempt to flank the PCs wherever possible.
It is highly unlikely that the Skaven in this room, given their desperate state and the orders of their leader, will be open to any form of negotiation or parley.
Each skaven has nothing in his or her belt pouch. In addition, the third skaven carries a piece of warpstone and a small iron key in his pouch as well. The warpstone was a reward from the warband’s leader to the head of this area’s watch force for being particularly bloodthirsty in the slaughter of the miners. The small iron key unlocks the door to Area 4.