Magnimar’s founders were adventurers, and the spirit of the adventurer and explorer keeps the heart and soul of Magnimar alive. It should thus come as no surprise that the monuments the city is so well known for often having ties to adventuring themes. In addition, many of the major works have been magically empowered over the years. The source of these enhancements are hotly debated—some assume that they were created by now-dead or anonymous spellcasters as a gift to the city, while others suspect these magical effects instead represent a legacy of the ancient Thassilonian wizardry lingering in the region’s stones. In truth, these effects are manifestations of the mysterious patrons of the Seacleft region, the ancient empyreal lords so beloved and venerated over the past several thousand years by Varisia’s native people. These lords have welcomed the land’s newest settlers, yet their welcome is subtle.
In many of the monuments detailed in the following pages, boons are listed for those who perform minor acts of worship and respect to Magnimar, its monuments, and the empyreal lords who watch over the city. Any nonevil intelligent creature who performs a specific act before one of these magically charged monuments and makes a successful skill check awakens the monument’s magic, and, in return, gains a small bonus of some sort for 24 hours. A single person can never have more than one monument- granted bonus in effect at any one time; attempts to gain a second bonus before the first wears off automatically fail. In addition, a person can only attempt to benefit from a monument bonus a number of times in a week equal to her Charisma modifier (minimum of once per week)—the city of Magnimar responds most often to those who carry themselves with greater poise and personality, after all.
The exact requirements and effects of the various monument boons are different for each monument in question.
The Battle of Charda
Magnimar is no stranger to threats from the sea—between the constant threat of piracy from Riddleport and raiders from the Linnorm Kingdoms, the city’s defenses have had plenty of opportunities over the past century to test their mettle. This large statue depicts the first and most famous of the nautical battles waged in the city’s early days between Magnimar’s navy and the pirates of Riddleport. The battle itself was significant not only for the size of the invading force, but for the pirates’ use of five captured and charmed monsters harvested from the Darklands—four-armed beasts known as chardas. Although only 4 feet tall, the chardas under Captain Jevanna “Winterkiss” Skrinn’s enchantment were a significant force, and had Antholus Kaddren not given his life during that battle in a desperate attempt to break the charms controlling the monsters (and thus turn them back on Captain Winterkiss in a fury of ruinous revenge), the bile-spewing monsters would have helped Riddleport sack the city. Today, the monument exaggerates the actual size of the chardas, depicting them as 30-foot-tall behemoths. Rumors that these monstrous giants are actually petrified monsters persist to this day.
Practice weapon play for 10 minutes before the Battle of Charda and make a successful DC 20 Intimidate check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all attack rolls made with melee weapons for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for each 10 points by which you exceed the initial check.
This magical fountain of flame was built by Antholus Kaddren—a gift to the city soon after its founding. The monument itself consists of a pedestal that supports a bronze bowl filled with green oil. A nimbus of fire perpetually burns within the bowl, dancing to an arcane rhythm and cycling in color from yellow to orange to violet to blue. Benches surround the remarkable fountain at a safe distance.
Meditate for 10 minutes before the flame
and make a successful DC 15 Spellcraft check to gain a +1 increase to the save DCs of all fire spells you cast
for the next 24 hours.
One of the tallest structures in the city, this 10-story, cylindrical monument is called the Cenotaph. Created as a memorial to Magnimar’s most beloved founder, Alcaydian Indros, the monument was meant to be an empty tomb honoring the local hero. As years passed and Indros’s family members and friends passed on, an inordinate number of residents requested to have their bones entombed near or within the monument. Begun as an honor to the great man, then a vogue, the practice has become a tradition and postmortem status symbol for all who can afford burial beneath the stones of the surrounding Mourner’s Plaza or in the later-constructed catacombs beneath the memorial. Priests of the church of Pharasma patrol the Cenotaph and its catacombs frequently, striving to keep the monument free of undead, scavengers, and grave robbers.
Pray for 10 minutes in the Mourner’s Plaza before the Cenotaph and make a successful DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all Fortitude saves for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for each 10 points by which you exceed the initial check.
Indros cul Vydrarch
The towering marble sculpture called “Indros cul Vydrarch” depicts the legendary battle between Alcaydian Indros and the great Vydrarch.
Recite the poem “Upon a Serpent’s Grave” in the original Aquan while standing before the monument, then attempt a DC 15 Perform (act, oratory, or sing) check. Success grants a +1 morale bonus on all weapon damage rolls against creatures with the aquatic subtype for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for each 5 points by which you exceed the initial check.
The Fifth Wind
This massive stone weather vane stands amid the docks, its windsocks towering above surrounding buildings so as to give all of Outcast’s Cove an easy method of determining wind speed and power. The sides of the stone pylon that supports the windsocks are carved with complex images of air elementals and cloud dragons in fierce battle.
Observe the patterns on the pylon and watch the windsocks cavort above for 5 minutes, then attempt a DC 15 Survival check. Success grants a +2 morale bonus on Survival checks for 24 hours, and prevents seasickness for the duration of any sea voyage begun while this bonus persists.
Our Lady of Blessed Waters
Seerspring Garden, a park boasting a spring of crisp, clear water, marks the northeastern corner of Keystone. The park itself is a fine place to relax, but its most striking feature is the bronze, strangely verdigris-free statue of a lithe woman that stands at the center of the water. The statue is said to be an image of the spirit believed to linger within the Seerspring, but none in Magnimar know who built the mysterious monument.
Spend 10 minutes in prayer to the spirit of the Seerspring, then attempt a DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check. Success grants a +1 morale bonus on all caster level and concentration checks for divine spells for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for each 5 points by which you exceed the initial check.
This corner of Seerspring Garden is dominated by a massive block of marble that protrudes 3 feet from the ground. The top of this block of stone has been meticulously carved into a scale model of the city of Magnimar. Touch-ups and additions to the carving are performed yearly to show the rise and fall of buildings in the city by artistic sculptors from the Church of Abadar using stone shape spells.
Meditate for 10 minutes before the Mapstone Monument and make a DC 15 Knowledge (local) check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all Will saves for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for every 10 points by which you exceed the DC 15 Knowledge (local) check.
The Celwynvian Charge
A gift from the elves of the distant Mierani Forest after Magnimar sent a delegation to secure a trade alliance, what was originally nothing more than a curious stony seedpod has, over the decades, grown into a tree-shaped sculpture as tall as a two-story building. Although the Mierani trade alliance never blossomed in the way Magnimar’s founders had hoped, the strange tree sculpture the elves gifted the city does every year, growing real leaves that bud and fall at the appropriate times of year.
Meditate for 10 minutes in the shade of the Celwynvian Charge and make a DC 15 Knowledge (nature) check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all Ref lex saves for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for every 10 points by which you exceed the DC 15 Knowledge (nature) check.
Just within Twins’ Gate stand the Guardians, one of the city’s larger monuments. These 200-foot-tall colossi depicting the young heroes Cailyn and Romre Vanderale face each other with burning staves held high, forming a giant arch.
Meditate for 10 minutes below the arch and make a successful DC 15 Knowledge (arcana) check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all concentration checks for 24 hours. This bonus increases by +1 for every 10 points by which you exceed the DC 15 Knowledge (arcana) check.
Mistress of Angels
This fine marble sculpture of Ordellia Whilwren, one of the founders of Magnimar, shows the beloved cleric of Desna looking out over the Varisian Gulf to the horizon, as if she were scanning for threats to the city.
Meditate for 10 minutes before the statue and make a successful DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check to gain a +1 morale bonus on all Initiative checks. This bonus increases by +1 for every 10 points by which you exceed the DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check.
The Shadow Clock
Among the most impressive monuments in Underbridge, the Shadow Clock is a minor marvel of engineering. At a height of 250 feet, this teetering structure of stone, wood, and rusted metal towers above the other buildings in the district, yet the overwhelming presence of the Irespan pilings itself keeps the clock in a more than symbolic shadow. The tower’s clock face is frozen at 3 o’clock, and though a statue of a nameless angel perches at its highest point, the Shadow Clock is the only monument in Magnimar that does not currently offer blessings to those who come seeking aid. Within, the hollow tower contains a rickety wooden staircase that winds up to the immense bells and frozen clockworks. Dubbed the “Terrible Stairs” by locals, it took 10 fatal attempts by foolish daredevils trying to climb the decaying steps before the city moved to close down the tower permanently. Today, the tower stands in defiance of the order—too massive to safely and affordably demolish, yet too well engineered to tumble down on its own. The tower itself is reputed to be the den of all manner of dangers, from lurking faceless stalkers to the ghosts of those who died during its construction, yet the actual inhabitant of the clock is perhaps more horrifying—a menace as old as the city itself. This is a hideously crafty and merciless flesh golem crafted by one of the founders of the Brothers of the Seven, a remorseless maniac known locally as “the Scarecrow.” The golem changes its lair often, most recently dwelling amid the trash and refuse inside of the tower; it comes and goes in the dead of night when the urge to murder becomes impossible to ignore. Despite its size, the Scarecrow is adept at remaining hidden, such that rumors of its existence remain unproven, and a legacy of over 100 years have gifted it with its own disturbing local nursery rhyme:
Mumble Mumble Scarecrow,
Alone in the maize.
Sleeping in the daytime,
A stitched man he stays.
But when the moon she rises,
Up Mumble gets.
He shakes his hands at first
And moves his feet the next.
And when the dog is snoring,
And when you’re fast asleep,
Mumble Mumble Scarecrow
Will find you good to eat.