HEROES OF IMPILTUR
Moaning Crown of Ndulu
The 1st Crown of Narfell was constructed by the demon Tharos and gifted to Thargaun Crell, the first Nentyarch (king) of Narfell. In the Crown’s early days, its powers were relatively benign, extracting a dark price from the bearer only upon his death. Those who dared call upon the powers of the Crown found their souls absorbed into the Crown at death and their bodies transformed into crown-wraiths. At its height, however, the Crown of Narfell had grown powerful indeed, and its evil persuasiveness almost certainly turned the Narfelli court toward consorting with demons that ruled the hearts of a succession of Nentyarchs.
The Crown was thought to be destroyed along with the rest of Dun Tharos when a mighty spell of unspeakable power leveled the entire area. However in 731 both the Crown and the Demontower reappeared in the ruins of Dun Tharos. A powerful balor named Ndulu (acting under the orders of Tharos) gathered a host of demons and marched directly toward the Demontower. His ambitions were halted when the Impilturan paladin Sarshel entered the tower and shattered the Crown of Narfell. Although Sarshel gathered up all the physical pieces of the Crown, the crown-wraiths escaped, and with them went the darkness that had beset the artifact. High priests of Ilmater, Torm, and Tyr collaborated to reforge the physical crown into a shining beacon of justice, truth, and mercy. The 2nd Crown of Narfell now serves as the imperial crown of Impiltur. Ndulu reportedly corralled the crown-wraiths to forge a shadow crown, later known as the Moaning Crown of Ndulu. More likely this was done by Tharos but given his penchant for remaining hidden behind the scenes, he let the new Crown bear Ndulu’s name.
Much later, the party learned of the Moaning Crown’s existence and went to Dun Tharos to retrieve it so that they could use its dark power to enter the Demontower. Ultimately the heroes tracked the Crown down to a demoness known as the Queen Abiding and defeated her in order to obtain it. Ghryll mastered the Crown and commanded the crown-wraiths to manifest so that the party could enter the Demontower. After the party had explored the tower, Tharos appeared an reclaimed the Crown from them. In the battle with Tharos atop the Demontower, the killing blow split the demon’s brow asunder and fractured the Crown once again.
The Moaning Crown’s appearance varied wildly depending on who was wearing it. All manifestations had one thing in common though, painful spikes bore into the wearers skull preventing them from removing it.