Tuesday, 28 June 2016
A squat amphibian with squalid brown eyes and claws, it is reminiscent of toads, fat swollen grubs, and hairless flabby bellies. It has a vile stink, like dead leaves, mud and rotting refuse. It belches gas and squirts poison, and gurgles strange noises into the jungle at dusk.
HD 5, AC 16, AB +6, ATT 1d6/1d6
*If both claw attacks hit, pulls to mouth and chews for 2d6 damage per round, hitting automatically, until death of the victim)
*Squirts milky white poison to its rear in a 6’ cone spray, melting flesh for 1d6+3 damage and permanent disfigurement of -6 CHA, or -2 CHA on a successful save
*Belches gas in an 8’ cube in front of it, causing incapacitation from vomiting for 1d6 rounds, or 1d3 rounds on a successful save*Gurgles and croaks; these are audible at a distance of a mile – those hearing are made magically curious and must approach on a failed save by the appointed dice roller for the party
If the cassowaries have a devil, this is it. A blue crested big bird with bilious eyes and brutal talons. It is the height of tall man and seeks to slice at the kneecaps, groin and belly with its reptilian feet. It has the utter implacability and unhesitating aggressive initiative of a gull digging up clams or a crow carrying off a baby sparrow.
HD 4+4, AC 16, AB +7, ATT 1d6/1d6*Roll a d3 on a successful hit – 1 indicates the knees, 2 the groin, 3 the belly. The target must successfully save vs death or be permanently lamed (half movement rate), castrated (incapacitated for two weeks), or eviscerated (death)
A black, undead husk of a tree that was sucked and gnawed and leeched to death by bugs, parasites and disease. Its soul inhabits the ruin of its former body, listening to the life of the jungle around it in suspicious fear and feeling itself slowly rot – the fungus burrowing into its corpse, the worms eating its roots. It dreams of reinvigoration, of return, of rebirth, of resurrection, of green shoots, and of life…
All that Quietly-thinking-in-the-dark-forest needs is a life – a human being is enough. That will allow it to sprout a new shoot from its old, withered and half-eaten roots. Passers-by (within 30’) must roll a saving throw vs magic. If they fail, they are overcome with the need to give their life blood to the tree. They feel as though they are filled with hot, sticky, thick fluid that needs to be released. They feel pregnant with it – as though they are walking sacks of blood which sloshes around inside them, uncomfortably, awkwardly, hatefully. They feel the disgust that a plant has towards hot, mammalian flesh. They feel compelled to slice open their wrists and groin and neck and let out all of this grotesque fluid which bloats them. If they do so, they die within a minute and the tree has the blood it needs to sprout. Within a month, a tiny shoot appears with a single yellow-green leaf. If eaten, this leaf is a cure for all diseases and a regenerator of lost limbs. If the sprout is cut out, the tree must start over again.
HD 8, AC 18, AB - , ATT –
Cat-sized marsupial scuttling rat-like beasts with agile grasping hands, and muscular tails which sway back and forth in balance. They chitter and chatter to each other in conspiratorial whispers in a language that no others can understand; they are like thieves and spies in love with shadows, hiding and deceit. They sharpen their claws on tree bark so that they can catch their prey, and snigger to each other as they gnaw on bones.
Peering-from-tree-branches-at-night-time loves ears, eyes, scalps, noses, teeth. In the darkness they hang by their tails from branches, or dangle each other by the feet, to drop down on shoulders to bite and scratch and return chuckling with bloody trophies to present to their mates.
HD 1, AC 20, AB +4, ATT Special
*Are never surprised; always surprise opponents unless the opponents are deliberately scanning the trees above them
*Attack in ambush by dangling from branches and dropping down to attack: failure indicates the attacker falls the floor and scampers up a nearby tree in the next round; success means 1d6 damage and an eye, ear, the nose, or the scalp is torn out/off (roll a d4)
A bower bird with emerald eyes, a head of sky blue, and a body of near-luminous yellow, whose sharp intelligent beak and tenderly dextrous claws are primarily devoted to gathering items for an ever-expanding bower made from feathers, feathers, stones, shells, and skins – anything that is vibrant and vivid.
It is assisted by a juvenile male with which it dances before the bower before the sceptical eyes of females. Together, the two males bounce and circle each other in a mesmerising rhythmic movement, their yellow wings making circular motions which linger in the vision like miniature suns, burned into the retina, impossible to remove no matter how much the observer rubs his eyes, splashes them with water, blinks, or weeps. They are always there, yellow circles of light, whether the observer’s eyes are closed or open – in the centre of the vision, painful, bright, permanent. Sleep is almost impossible, and when it happens, it is dominated by a vision of a circle of yellow that appears slowly and endlessly descending, lower and lower, without ever quite arriving, without ever quite meeting the eye, without ever quite bringing the suffering to a close with the sweet embrace of death.
HD 1, AC 20, AB +1, ATT None
*If a PC sees the bower birds dancing, he or she must save vs magic or be permanently semi-blinded (-4 to all dice rolls requiring vision) and overcome by a profound malaise – roll 1d20 at the start of each day; on a roll of 1 the PC is catatonic and cannot be persuaded to do anything, although he or she will be too meek to resist being carried or led