This abandoned keep sits on the south eastern border of The Dark Swamp. It is built (over DéDannan ruins) by a failed Torland Colony to watch the swamp. The lizardfolk never took the keep during the Torlandish occupation because they never attacked it in sufficient numbers. Once the Torlandish army left the lizardfolk striped it clean of all valuables they could find. There used to be a small settlement around the keep but it was destroyed after the legion left.
The locals are not aware of it's history and assume it was built by the Earl. The black guard had taken to clearing it out on the Earl’s behalf every year or so but they never held it. The tribes of lizardfolk grew tired of wasting manpower on the keep and so it has been left unmanned. It is currently unmanned. But danger still lurks there.
Wild Marsh Tribe lizardfolk patrol the area though to ensure that no one takes control of it. They will not abide anyone residing there. Now that they are lead by the Wild Marsh Druid, the Lizardfolk will attack it in great numbers, if it is manned again.
Since the Alhoon took up residence, he has casually turned all comers into undead. He didn’t attempt to intervene when the blackguard arrived as he doesn’t wish to draw undue attention until his power is consolidated. The Alhoon can raise undead without material component cost simply by killing a creature with his touch.
The Alhoon has been robbing corpses from the Fochlachan Tomb in order to experiment on combining ceremorphosis, undeath and pure DéDannan bodies to create a new master illithid race. Athrú is very pleased with his new disciple. If the race prospers, The Alhoon will start on the path to divinity and rulership if the illithids. His other experiment is too dangerous to attempt, to use the process on the crawling head. He wouldn't be able to control it and it might become an Alhoon Crawling Elder Brain. He is also experimenting with Tzakandi.
The keep is initially empty but it refills quickly and there are encounters with Zombies, Shadow Asps, Shadows, Lizardfolk (Blackscale Smiths).
The Shadows stay away from the Black Guard as they cannot harm it and did not perceive it as a life form. The Lizardfolk arrive ad hoc. They believe this keep is theirs. The Zombies meander in randomly.
The upper floors are ransacked and there is little of value, The floors above are treacherous due to old age and damp. The thick wood is mouldy and rotten through in some places and may collapse. (Knowledge Engineering DC 15 or Spot DC 25 ) Reflex Save DC 15 to jump to safety.
Battlements, Catapults, Rotten floors Very dangerous, ransacked
Keep 3rd floor
Barracks and commanders quarters, Temple to Cogadh, Ranged Armoury, Rotten floors, ransacked. There is a secret door in the centurion’s chamber Search DC 20. There is a bust of General Tacticus I, on a stone pillar next to the wall. His eyes are closed. If the eyes are pressed together they open and the secret door slides open too. Inside is a small room and hidden under a loose flagstone (Search 25) is a small chest. The chest is coated with poison (DC 15) and fitted with a blade trap (DC 20). It is locked DC 25. Inside is a wand of healing with 20 charges remaining and a set of instructions for a centurion, retaking the keep for Torland. The scroll is 50 years old.
Keep 2nd floor
Kitchens, stores and barracks, servants quarters, Rotten floors, ransacked
Keep 1st floor
Great Hall & training area, Armoury, Bath house toilet, Rotten floors, ransacked. The armoury is empty but there is a battered worthless looking large steel shield lying wedged under a heavy wooden armour rack, which is serviceable. The floor near the rack could give way.
Keep Ground floor
Several zombie bodies and a few lizardfolk corpses. Horses, stables and siege equipment. Forges, Toilet, heavy storage, Cavalry Armoury. There is large well in the middle of the main stables. Water from the well was pumped (using horse power) into a large container near the forge. The water was heated and then pumped around the keep via a tank on the roof. This provided heat and hot water to the upper levels. The forge is fully functional and has been recently used by the lizardfolk, primarily by black scales to craft chain shirts. There have been lizardfolk zombies using the well water wheels to flood the levels below, but they were destroyed by the Black Guard. Their bodies lie next to the wheels.
Keep Dungeon level 1
The keep's dungeons were shaped from the ruins of the DéDannan Citadel. Originally the keep used all the ruins as they pleased. However the ruins were filled with unnamed horrors which leaked out constantly, so most of the ruins were sealed off with stone and spell.
Cells, Solitary, interrogation, torture, Storage, Alchemy, pit traps. This level is currently flooded and there are zombie alligators in the water.
Poll-Na-Déanta Level 1
Cells, Storage, Magical experiments lab, library. Teleportation room. Secret Exit/Entrance There is a secret passage from the dungeons underneath the keep to a cave half a mile away. There is a rise between the keep and the cave and the cave is surrounded by a small wood. Behind the sealed access to the DéDannan tunnels is a nest of Shadow Asps (FF p152), and the area is patrolled by the shadows they created. This level will be flooded if the water is not removed from the rest of the level before the sealed passage is opened. It will drain out through the secret exit and into the levels below.
Poll-Na-Déanta Level 2
High Security prison, Reinforced Secure magic labs, Temple to Draíocht, Mage Quarters. Beneath the dungeons in The Dark Keep is an alchemists lab and a library. The Torland Legionnaires sealed of this area for a reason … There is a magical device (a circle of power) under the Dark Keep that allows fallen creatures to be summoned, questioned and bound if the user knows their true names. Ivellios knows the true name of a Succubus.
Poll-Na-Déanta Level 3
The deeper levels hold an Alhoon, Caryatid columns (FF p30), a Spectral Lurker (FF p158) and an ancient Crawling Head (FF p35). The Alhoon, High Elder Feeder-Lord Teth Cromith XIX of Metarex Prime, has already begun creating a slave army having embraced Athrú. He has been capturing Lizardfolk and using ceremorphosis on them to create Tzakandi Half-Illithids (FF p90).