Signs, Omens, and Encounters: Banshee

Signs

  • A sudden clearing in an otherwise dense wet forest. The fauna is dead and dry.
  • A withered corpse lies partially submerged in the muck, a standard sword clutched in its hands, signs of a futile defense. No visible trauma.
  • Incorporeal women's things (a bit of scarf, a neckless, etc.) lay scattered about. They slowly dissolve into the ether as the PCs examine them.

Omens

  • A low, almost human moan echoes through the trees, shivering through the PCs' spines.
  • The temperature noticeable drops, the air becomes chilled, then frigid, before rewarming.
  • A sudden airy face appears, hovers, scowls, then gone.

Encounters

  1. A shrieking, horrible female figure emerges from the trees and attacks with all her hate and fury (ML10).
  2. A wave of sound erupts across the forest, withering the leaves as it approaches the PCs in 3...2...1... All players who didn't make some kind of action indicating that the PCs cover their ears (by actively cupping their ears or indicating that their PC has done so) must roll CON or suffer vertigo, nausea, and ringing in the ears (-1 to any roll for 1d6 TURNS). On the next round the Banshee attacks (ML8).
  3. A wailing human? inhuman? sound. PCs each roll WIS or suffer a condition then reroll on the encounter table.
    • 1-3 Fear (as the spell): The Banshee will, if on reroll attacks, attack lone, frightened targets.
    • 4-6 Eyes Bleed: -1 to attack rolls and any roll requiring sight for 1d6 TURNS.
  4. The air shimmers like a star-lit curtain, forming into a vague figure who hovers almost imperceptibly. She neither approaches nor retreats. If PCs approach her, she darkens into a not-quite opaque red-black figure. If challenged, she attacks once with a shriek (DMG 2d6) before dropping quickly into the moist earth. 
  5. A solitary, ephemeral figure hovers ominously before the PCs, then abruptly streaks behind them into the brush. A lone scream in the treeline and left behind, the sallow corpse of an eavesdropper. On his person: Treasure B/II.
  6. A formless form, greyish clear, hovers. It is possibly beseeching, but who knows, until a subtle wind dissolves it. A single item drops to the ground: The SOUL STEALER (Pits & Perils pg 63). This blade is the same as mentioned in the core rules, however, it is cursed. Replace the Banshee with this sword on random encounter tables and if selected then the sword suddenly needs a taste of blood. Player rolls CHA and if failed then the sword compels the PC to draw and attack random PCs until blood is drawn (at least 1 HP).