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Cave Paintings: Books of the Ancients

by Håvard

Sophisticated Cave Paintings are made by the Neathar, Brute Men and Beastmen of the Hollow World. Many of these are masterful works of art. But some are even more than that. To those taught to read them properly, some of these paintings and series of paintings combined tell complex stories, serve as instruction manuals or are even designed to produce magical effects.

Roll on the Following Table:

1-15 Astounding work of art
16-20 Lore: +5 bonus to Skill Bonus on specific area of knowlegde or expertise. Use Int check if the General Skill system is not used.
21-25 As Scroll of Communication
26-30 As Scroll of Creation
31-35 As Scroll of Curse
36-40 As Scroll of Equipment
41-45 As Scroll of Illumination
46-50 As Scroll of Map to Normal Treasure
51-55 As Scroll of Map to Magical Treasure
56-60 As Scroll of Map to Combined Treasure
61-65 As Scroll of Portals
66-70 As Scroll of Protection from Elementals*
71-75 As Scroll of Protection from Lycanthropes*
76-80 As Scroll of Protection from Magic*
81-85 As Scroll of Protection from Undead*
86-70 As Scroll of Questioning
71-75 As Scroll of Shelter
76-80 As Scroll of Truth
85-90 As Scroll of Spells
91-92 As Book of Golem construction
93-94 As Book of Juggernaut construction
95-96 Add +1 permanently to one ability score. (Determine randomly).
95-00 DM's Choice

*Unlike their respective scrolls, these Protection effects do not take effect right away. Instead they can be "recalled" at a time of the player's choice within one month (30 sleeps) after the cave painting is observed. The effect lasts from the point of being recalled and as long as the effect of the standard scroll (1d6+6 Turns).

As mentioned above, observing a single cave painting may not be enough to activate these effects. Observing paintings in a series of caves or across the rooms of a dungeon complex may be required to learn the secrets of the painting. These details are left to the DM, but one could make a small quest out of something like this. As with other magical books and scrolls, these paintings may only be used once unless specified in the description. For scroll effect descriptions, see the RC.