The Dreamlands of Eternal Sloth

Exploring the World of Song of Sins

During sleep, a soul can visit many planes and realities, this is why we dream. Those who indulge in the sin of Sloth, however, are all too frequent visitors of the Dreamlands, the most ethereal plane of the Land of Sins. Some sinners are the unluckiest of all and become cursed by this land’s ruler, eventually becoming one of its permanent inhabitants.

Unlike the other realms in the Land of Sins, the Dreamlands are everywhere and nowhere at the same time, changing itself with each dreamer that comes to it. Some of those who visit these lands come during their dreams, traveling the immaterial landscapes of the Dreamlands, others have already been pulled into the Land of Sins and roam to the Dreamlands physically in hopes of one day escaping.

Regardless of the way a dreamer contact the Dreamlands, they are in imminent danger of being cursed by the Curse of Torpor. This is the call of the Dreamlands and of its Ruling Sin to all who dream of this realm, pulling them more and more into it. Those who are cursed in the material realm are slowly being put into eternal sleep to be pulled into the Land of Sins, and those cursed in the Dreamlands are being beaconed into becoming one of the nightmares.

Bogeyman Concept Art, from Loot Studios’ Curse of Torpor.

Creatures who succumb to the Curse of Torpor in the Dreamlands have their souls changed into horrible creatures as they sleep. This happens while they have their consciousness trapped in a place called the Nightmare, the deepest level of the Dreamlands, where the horrors truly come to life. Once there, the sinners have no hope of waking up again, and their existence is hostage to eternal and hopeless stillness.

Curse of Torpor

Restless nights and drowsy days spell the arrival of the Curse of Torpor. As it sets in, you will feel the gentle embrace of the dreaming and of the restful torpor that comes with it. Everything that used to be real will become distant for you, and sleep will be your only wish. But then the nightmares will come, and you won’t be able to wake up.

There are many ways to be cursed by the Dreamlands of Eternal Sloth, be it slumbering in a dungeon too deep underground or giving in to the embrace of despair while your will to live diminishes. None are more vulnerable to the Curse than the inhabitants of the Land of Sins, however. These unfortunate souls can become cursed by running into the nightmares of the Dreaming or just by being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

If you get the Curse of Torpor while in the Dreamlands, the curse progresses as normal, but if you reach the final stage of the curse, you may transform into one of the nightmares that haunt this plane.

Getting Cursed

The circumstances that will lead a character to become cursed will differ from table to table, and they are more dependent on your gaming style than on one rule set in stone. A character can have first contact with the Curse of Torpor in many ways, be it by resting in a cursed dungeon, eating a cursed item, like an unsuspecting apple, or even by angering an entity powerful enough to curse them. Just make sure to let the players understand the stakes of each situation where they could be cursed instead of surprising them outright.

After the character’s first contact with a curse, there are also different approaches to convey the process of getting cursed:

  • It could be a sure thing, where the curse takes place as a consequence of player action;
  • It could be a process, where each night during a week they perceive indications that the curse is progressing. This serves as a moment where the Remove Curse spell works normally before the curse takes hold, or;
  • You could ask for a Saving Throw while they take a long rest, to represent a zero-stage for the curse. If they fail the Saving Throw, the first stage sets in. This is the method we recommend and cover more about it below.

dream eater
Dream Eater Concept Art, from Loot Studios’ Curse of Torpor.

Curse of Torpor

The Curse of Torpor has four distinct stages a creature can be in. When you take a long rest, make a Constitution Saving Throw. The DC for this is: 

10 + the number of the stage you are in

If you fail the Saving Throw, you advance the curse by one stage. Creatures that are immune to magical effects that would put them to sleep, like elves or the Fell, have advantage on this Saving Throw.

A creature that is in a stage of the curse is subject to that stage’s effects and the effects of the stages that came before. The stages of the Curse of Torpor are the following:

1st Stage – When you take a short rest, you roll a number of dice equal to your remaining hit dice. If the total of the roll exceeds your current hit points, you fall unconscious and begin to take a long rest. You can’t be awoken until you finish the long rest, unless Lesser Restoration or Remove Curse is cast on you.

2nd Stage – You can no longer use the dash action. When you take a short or a long rest, it takes double the normal amount of time for you to gain any benefits you’d normally gain from that rest.

3rd Stage – When you are hit by a critical attack, make a Constitution Saving Throw. DC equals 10 or half the damage you take, whichever number is higher. If you fail, you fall unconscious. You wake up if you take damage or if a creature shakes you awake using an action. You must make a Saving Throw against the curse’s progression when you fall unconscious this way, and the curse progresses by one stage if you fail.

4th Stage – You fall asleep as your physical form is drawn into a torpor from which nothing can wake you up. Your soul, however, goes to the Dreamlands, permanently. While asleep in the material world, you no longer require food or drink, but you are still vulnerable to the passing of time. If your body dies, your soul continues living in the Dreamlands, but if you return to a body that is no longer living, you die immediately. In the Dreamlands your soul no longer has the Curse of Torpor, but you can be affected by it again. If you you hit the 4th Stage and you are in the Lands of Sin, you fall asleep and, unless Desidia, Lady of Slumber, is awoken before your transformation is complete, you turn into a shackled horror in 1d10 days.

shackled horror dreamlands
Shackled Horror Concept Art, from Loot Studios’ Curse of Torpor.

Getting Rid of Curses

Like getting cursed, getting rid of a curse can work in many different ways. The spell Remove Curse is the first thing that comes to mind, but it shouldn’t work as an instant cure for the Curse of Torpor. Casting Remove Curse on a creature afflicted by the Curse of Torpor could do any of the following:

  • Stop the advance of the curse for one night;
  • Move the progression of the curse backward one stage at a time;
  • If your curse takes some time to set in, it only cures the curse before it had taken root.

The best way to deal with curses, however, is to use it as a hook for adventure. To get rid of the curse, you could send your players on a mission to find a cure or a setback, like a magical herb, object, or a healer that could help them.

Additionally, one definite way to get rid of the curse is to deal with what originates it. Desidia, Lady of Slumber, is the Ruling Sin of the Dreamlands of Eternal Sloth, and if she is awoken, the Curse of Torpor ends for all creatures affected, at least until a new Ruling Sin of Sloth takes over.

Nightmares (Optional rule). When your curse advances while you are asleep, roll on the encounter table as creatures or images from the Nightmare are transported to your dream. Whatever was rolled is encountered in that creature’s dreams. Any creature that was sleeping within 30 feet of that creature, also faces a random encounter’s result in the Dreamlands while they are asleep. The nightmare ends if they defeat the encounter or after they finish a vision. If they die in the Dreamlands, their curse advances one stage, but no damage taken there carries over to their waking body.

d8 Nightmares Encounter Table
1-6No nightmares are encountered, but the sleeping creature has visions about Desidia, Lady of Slumber.
71d4 Shackled Horrors
81d4 Priests of Slumber + 1 Horror Summoner
91 Sleeping Deceit
101d3 Lullaby Gent
11They meet one lost adventurer trying to escape the Dreamlands, and they are stuck there permanently.
121 Insomnia Beast

Fell, the Ashened

“Turning into Night
Sorrow is felt.
To quell bright pain,
With a promise of else
I follow the rites
Under lordly might
May I be freed
As one of the Fell”
Rites of the Ashening, King Hemmos

The Fell are a people filled with grief for those who still haven’t accepted The Path of the Ashening, for they are still prone to the sufferings of the living condition. Fell believe that life leads to pain, and these are the shackles put on mortals by the gods. This has led them to forsake the condition of life in favor of undeath, which protects them from the ailments of mortality.  

Most of them live in the repurposed structures from the places they have conquered, but the buildings from their small homeland are of greystone and metal, forming great squared and peaked structures made to last through the ages. 

The Fell race is a very pragmatic folk, and this reflects on the cultural traditions that they follow. Their music serves a largely religious purpose, played inside their grandiose cathedrals. Their generally dampened sense of taste and lack of need for food doesn’t impede them to make unique cuisine that caters exclusively to flavor. These meals are made only for the purpose of politics and influence with other races, fortifying their culture in times of peace.

Bleak Appearance

The offspring of the humans that dealt with dark powers, the Fell are those who accept a pact that binds a humanoid’s soul to undeath. The Fell have taken over the lands, pressing the free peoples to convert to their state or die. A Fell retains the physical features of the race they are converted from but with a few remarkable details: their ashen skin is grayed, crackly, and marked with the scars acquired after undeath, and their eyes are colored a variety of shades of amber that seem to glow in the darkness.

Beyond their looks, there are other notable traits of the Fell. Mainly the lavish styling of their hair and nails, which are the only things that grow and change after undeath.

Most Fell clothing is bland or repurposed from the cultures they convert, the exception being their armor, which is heavily detailed and adorned, to a point that only the Fell would be able to wear.

cot 3

Society of the Fell

The society of the Fell is very dependent on the absence of sunlight, which is something that heavily impairs them. Wherever they congregate in large numbers, the sun is blotted out by clouds of black ash. Some see it as a curse, but the Ashened see it as a blessing of their pact. All that is certain is that this effect heralds the coming of the Fell.

The Two Codes

As a part of their creation, the Fell swear after the codes that bind them to their undeath. A Fell, therefore, is expected to follow the two codes set by King Hemmo, the First of the Fell, and by Dante, the Fallen Regent.

Code of Hemmo

These are the rules set ages past by King Hemmo, the First of the Fell:

Rule of Honesty. Thou shalt not lie of the nature about the Path of the Ashening, and shalt not convert a soul that is unwilling to join our Path.

Rule of Hierarchy. Thou shalt respect the commands of those you consider higher in the hierarchy to the last of consequences. Thou shalt never challenge the station of one who follows the Path of the Ashening and is above your station.

Rule of Haunting. Thou shalt follow a task that has been agreed over an open flame to the last of consequences.

Rule of Hospitality. Thou shalt not offend a guest who was invited to your home, be it a friend, enemy, or stranger. Thou shalt be accommodating to them until such time as they prove, by their words or actions, undeserving of such hospitality.

Rule of the Heir

This is the rule set by Dante, the Fallen Regent after the second pact. Most Fell follow it, but some refuse to for not recognizing the heir’s legitimacy over the first king:

Rule of Hastening. Thou shalt hasten the bringing of the Evernight.

Nightmare Aberration Concept Art, from Loot Studios’ Curse of Torpor.

Fell Traits

You have the following racial traits.

Creature Type. You are a Humanoid. 

Size. You are Medium or Small. You choose the size when you gain this lineage.

Speed. Your walking speed is 30 feet.

Ancestral Legacy. If you replace a race with this lineage, you can keep the following elements of that race: any skill proficiencies you gained from it and any climbing, flying, or swimming speed you gained from it.

If you don’t keep any of those elements or you choose this lineage at character creation, you gain proficiency in two skills of your choice.

Superior Darkvision. Your darkvision has a range of 120 feet.

Sunlight Sensitivity. You have disadvantage on attack rolls and on Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight when you, the target of your attack, or whatever you are trying to perceive is in direct sunlight.

Undead Nature. You have escaped death, a fact represented by the following traits:

  • You register as undead to spells and other effects that detect the presence of the undead creature type;
  • You have advantage on death Saving Throws;
  • You don’t need to eat, drink, or breathe, and you don’t age, and effects that would cause you to age don’t work on you.

Slumber. You don’t need to sleep, and magic can’t put you to sleep. You can finish a long rest in 4 hours if you spend those hours in an inactive, motionless state, during which you retain consciousness.

Whenever you finish your slumber, you gain proficiency in one skill of your choice and with one weapon or tool of your choice, selected from the Player’s Handbook. You mystically acquire these proficiencies by drawing them from the shared experiences on The Path of the Ashening and the experiences of undead entities that the Fell consort with, and you retain them until you finish your next long rest.

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