"Those were the most hellish nights of any of our lives. The howls of the wind, the bitter cold and feral beasts...I think I may have truly lost my mind at one point. I do not fear what comes next."
--The Dying Words of Urgoth Shimmerflame, Dwarven Adventurer
Upon arrival in the labyrinth, most people are disoriented and overwhelmed. The darkness, bitter cold and deafening winds assault the senses at once and even those with keen vision and concentration cannot orient themselves at first against the chaotic terrain. A DC 15 Knowledge (The Planes) check will reveal that an individual is no longer on the Elemental Plane of Air and a DC 30 check will reveal that they are on the Material Plane.
Navigating the labyrinth is a dangerous but inevitable gambit. The terrain is harsh, the elements unforgiving and the creatures are either holy guardians testing the worth of those seeking the Cathedral or twisted abominations seeking to maim and feed. (Random encounters for the labyrinth can be found in the Creatures section.) In order to successfully traverse the labyrinth, the party must make a DC 30 Survival check every six hours of travel time or become lost. Three failed checks in a row negate a day's worth of progress. Any party lost in the labyrinth for more than a week suffers an increasing 10% chance each day to spontaneously find themselves transported to a random place on the Elemental Plane of Air. While most divination spells do not work on Aerin'al Hauri, certain divinations such as Find the Path cast inside the labyrinth will reveal the quickest or safest route to the Cathedral, preventing the need for Survival checks to avoid getting lost.
The labyrinth is seventy-five miles wide at its widest and moving at optimal speeds, a party can traverse the longest, most direct path to the Cathedral in a week under ideal conditions (though various obstructions tend to make this longer.) The labyrinth is mostly uniform with paths chaotically encircling a half-mile-diameter central plain housing the Cathedral. With the exception of the tears at the outer edges, planar travel and teleportation does not work within the bounds of the labyrinth. (This means that interdimensional items like Bags of Holding and Haversacks do not function.)
Of all of the obstructions in the party's path, the constant winds can prove to be the most troublesome. No matter which direction the party moves, the winds fight against them, slowing movement to half speed (minimum 10 ft.) and hindering all ranged attacks, imposing a -2 penalty on them.
Once an hour, hurricane-force winds blast through the labyrinth, sending debris and small creatures flying. Every hour, the party must make Reflex saves (DC 19) to avoid the flying rocks and debris, which deals 5d6 damage (a successful save halves this damage.) Furthermore, all small or smaller creatures must make DC 15 Strength checks at the same time or be knocked down and dragged across the jagged rocks, taking 3d6 damage and moving 15 feet back each round they fail to make the check. If they fail 3 consecutive times, the wind drives them into a wall, dealing an additional 3d6 damage and reducing their movement speed by half for an hour (minimum 10 feet.) Creatures carried by Medium or larger creatures are immune to this effect, though they are still susceptible to the debris.
Items weighing less than 20 lbs. that are dropped are instantly carried away by the wind. To recover such an item takes an hour and a DC 40 Search check. After an hour, the item cannot be intentionally recovered, though there is a 1% chance that it will eventually blow across the party's path later on.
Clerics with the Air domain are immune to these problems as are all designated allies within twenty feet of them.
On the outer edges of the labyrinth, especially near the planar tears, are areas of Wild Magic. All spells cast within a mile of a planar tear have a fifty percent chance of working normally, a twenty percent chance of being enhanced (CL +2), a twenty percent chance of being impeded (-2 CL) and a ten percent chance of being Wildcast. A Wildcast spell does not act as the cast spell at all. To determine the effects of a Wildcast spell, roll on the table of effects for the Rod of Wonder. Conversely, all spells with the [Air] descriptor are automatically enhanced without the need to roll.
Closer to the center of the labyrinth are spheres of pure vacuum. These areas deal 2d6 cold damage and 2d6 unnamed damage to every creature within them each round. A successful Reflex save (DC 21) halves this damage. These areas are impossible to Spot, but a DC 25 Listen check can pick them out from up to 20 feet away. In addition to these miniature vacuums, a powerful divine field surrounds the Cathedral. The closer evil creatures get to it, the stronger its effect becomes. Any individuals with alignments opposing Aerin'al's (Any Evil) that come within 10 miles of the Cathedral must make a Will save (DC 25) each day or take 1 point of Wisdom damage which cannot be healed while in the labyrinth (to a minimum of 1.) Any creature reduced to 1 Wisdom by this effect instantly Rages, seeking to destroy the Cathedral even at great cost to themselves.
The majority of the labyrinth is trap-free save for what the roving bands of creatures may set near their settlements. The exception to this rule lies in the one mile band surrounding the Cathedral. Several types of trap litter the crevasses and entrances to the center of the maze.
- Crushing Wall Trap
The sides of the labyrinth corridors slam together, smashing creatures and items together.
CR 10; mechanical; location trigger; automatic reset; no attack roll required (18d6, crush); Search DC 20; Disable Device DC 25.
- Sonic Arrows Trap
The trap looks like normal ground until someone attempts to travel across it. The air spins itself into several points and tears at anyone in the area.
CR 10; magical; location trigger; automatic reset; multiple, random targets; +10 touch attacks (3d6 sonic, 20 arrows); Search DC 19; Disable Device DC 26.
- Defenestrating Curse Trap
The winds of the Labyrinth grow in strength, lifting you off of your feet and slamming you into obstacles.
Individuals affected by this trap are hurled into nearby walls every 1d4 rounds (taking 2d6 falling damage each time) until the effect is dispelled or they are unconscious. The effect resumes if they regain consciousness while still in the labyrinth.
CR 10; magical; proximity trigger (Alarm); automatic reset; spell-like effect (Alter Gravity, 15th level wizard, DC 21 Will save negates); Search DC 24; Disable Device DC 29.
- Gust of Wind Spell Trigger
A sudden wind blows across the rocky outcroppings. The whistles and noises coming from the jagged rocks seem to form coherent words just before a wave of fire erupts.
CR 10; magical; proximity trigger (Alarm triggers Gust of Wind); automatic reset; multiple functions; single random spell effect (Fireball, Lightning Bolt, Summon Monster IX, Cone of Cold or Acid Fog 17th level wizard, DC 23 Reflex save for half damage on evocation, Acid Fog); Search DC 25; Disable Device DC 30.
- Wail of the Banshee Trap
This trap lies exclusively at the five entrances to the interior plain.
CR 10; magic device; proximity trigger (Alarm); automatic reset; spell effect (Wail of the Banshee, 17th-level wizard, DC 23 Fortitude save negates, -2 penalty for evil creatures); multiple targets (up to 17 creatures); Search DC 34; Disable Device DC 34.
All creatures in the labyrinth are either sustained by perverted arcane energies, the constant winds or by the will of their goddess. (Though many of the horrors still hunt and feed on other creatures, they do so more out of habit or malice than from need.) These forces rarely affect individuals seeking the Cathedral who must usually scavenge to stay alive.
A DC 25 Survival check each day procures enough water, moss and plant material to sustain a party. Areas closer to the center are more devoid of edible material, requiring a DC 30 check. Meat can only be acquired from fallen enemies and requires a DC 25 check from the Knowledge skill appropriate to the creature type to properly identify and cut. Meat taken haphazardly or from a failed check causes those who eat it to become sickened for a day (Fort save negated, DC 26).