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Halsyle Day

Though none now remember the name of the king he betrayed, Hals Lyle’s name lives on in infamy, and this tale—or something close to it—is taught to children across the land: Centuries ago a prince named Hals Lyle was discovered engaging in unholy practices and was cast out by his brother, the king. In his exile, he brooded and drew to himself the power-hungry, the disloyal, and those determined to overthrow the rightful king. Hals Lyle continued his studies in his banishment creating an army of clay guardians, with a plan to invade and make himself king.

His apprentice Lagen, fearful of the destruction such creatures would cause, sent warnings to six of his friends, providing them with secret words that would prevent the guardians from attacking. These citizens shared the details of the attack and the passwords with the king and have ever since been remembered as the “loyal six.” With these words, the king’s magicians were able to gain control of thousands of guardians. The Pottery War that could have destroyed the nation, ended in mere moments as half of Hals’ army turned against their master and destroyed the other half. Hals was captured by the king, and this time he was shown no mercy. After days of torture, during which he revealed the names of his co-conspirators, his tongue was torn out and two of his own guardians were used to hold him in a bonfire as he was burned alive.

Each year the loyal six and the death of Hals Lyle are celebrated across the land on the first full moon of the fall. As night falls, selected celebrants (often children or young adults) dress up as the six, wearing long-sleeved black gowns that hang loose at the shoulder and are tied with yellow cordage. Carrying an effigy of Hals wearing a long robe and with its chin painted red, they take it through the settlement. Stopping at each house along the way, they collect hard candied sweets from householders—tokens of respect for the loyalty of the six.

Finally, the dummy is added to a communal bonfire alongside several rough-made clay figures no bigger than a human’s head. A special dough is placed in these figures, and as the fires die they are removed and broken open. The cooked bread inside is consumed by those present and is believed to strengthen the eaters, fortifying their ability to remain loyal and true.

Game Mechanics

For a week following Halsyle Day, any Deception checks made against a creature that ate the bread are made with disadvantage . In addition, when such creatures share a meal lasting at least an hour they each gain 1d6 temporary hit points. A creature can only benefit from this effect once per short rest .