Thursday, August 26, 2010

Birds interfere in human politics

After a terribly long break of concept work, parental leave, and a spiritual retreat, I'm very happy to be back here. As I wanted to get started right away, I pretty much let the brush decide this time. What showed up was this mythological-ish creature. Perhaps not the most useful of beasts in all campaigns, but as I liked the mood, I had to go through with this one.

Not much more to say really, more than that I'm thankful that there are still some of you returning to check out this blog, despite the long break. I cannot make any promises for the future, but for sure, I'd love to see more creatures here! :)



CATEGORY: Ethereal Power
TERRAIN: Any (The Ethereal Plane of Existence)
FOOD: Ethereal (spirits and souls)
AGGRESSION: Controlled
SIZE: 8-9 feet (240-270 cm) tall

AGILITY: 14-18
CHARM: 11-12
(If stats of a human ranges from 3 to 18)

SPEED: Running x 4, Flying (eagle x 5)
(Multiple is times human speed)

(Ranges from 0-100)

(If a human commoner has about 11 hit points)

(If Full Plate Armour is 10)

The material body of the Dhondoros is covered with thick hide and feathers, giving it sufficient protection when in physical form.

2 CLAWS: 2-8
1 BEAK: 2-6
(If a Long Sword makes a damage of 1-8)

The Dhondoros never attacks with its bodily weapons, but may occasionally defend itself with these physical means.

ETHEREAL COMMAND: The Dhondoros has the power to speak words of command through the ethereal dimension. On the material plane this voice is loud, deep and bellowing. Here it contains no words, but on the ethereal level it reaches into the souls/spirits of all within the range of sound. It commands obedience. Unless a tough mental resilience roll is passed, all beings and beast must follow. These commands are never complex, but stay in the line of “listen”, “halt”, “turn back”, “go home”, “yield” etc. This power may be used three times a day.

ETHEREAL WALL: Once a day the Dhondoros can conjure forth an ethereal wall, stopping all ethereal bodies (and thus the corresponding material one) The wall is a slight shimmer of bluish white that might be missed on a bright day, but to all spirits and souls it is impenetrable. It lasts for 15-20 hours and cannot be undone. The wall can be 30 feet (10 meters) high, 18 miles (30 kilometers) wide, and a single foot in breadth. It reaches through all matter and cannot be scaled on the physical plane.

ETHEREAL HUNGER: To remain materialized the Dhondoros must eat. It feeds on nothing but the souls and spirits of beings and creatures. Once every ten minutes a new human-sized soul, or an equal volume, must be consumed. This is done by throwing out a swift ethereal tube into the body of the prey. The ethereal “tongue” can be seen on the material plane, but can only be damaged by magical weapons. It is extremely fast and hard to see (especially in daylight). The whole process of eating takes a single round. Agility and speed can be used as defense, but armours are of no use (Some spells and magical armours may offer protection.) The tube, which issues from the beak of the Dhondoros, may extend up to 165 feet (50 meters).

Every now and then in the history of every world, minor gods interfere with the business of mortal beings and beasts. Still subjects to desire, some higher powers cannot help themselves from disturbing the ordinary fate of things.

The Dhondoros are said to be messengers of such powers. They have been witnessed to appear suddenly in the midst of great battles, and in the center of throne rooms and courts. There they have wreaked their terrible powers, shortly and efficiently, only to disappear again once it is done. Occasionally they have materialized before single individuals, to turn their minds about, or to deliver powerful information. These occasions are rare and very little is known about the creatures.

The Dhondoros normally inhabit The Ethereal Plane of Existence. What they do in this, their natural abode, is unknown to the scholars here. If they are captured and brought into service, or willfully in aid of higher powers, is unclear. But always they seem to speak for someone else. At will they can create a material body, but move on ethereal wings even in earthly form. They are tall, majestic, and their presence is foreboding.

Apart from their ethereal powers the Dhondoros may know and use any amount of spells and languages. Rare stories speak of them as helpful and guiding, but most portray them as a dark and mysterious powers, feeding on random spirits to please their hunger and purpose. At times they descend upon the world from above, and at other occasions they simply appear; always with unearthly might and command.

Except for the transparant and bluish aspect, the ethereal bodies of the Dhondoros are similar to, but more graceful than, their material ones. They are rare also in the ethereal realms, but may be spotted in greater numbers once encountered. Sacred texts say they were once steeds to the Powers of Old, who rode them in the times before the making of Earth and Water. Now, though set free, they still obey their former masters – those who made them, and those who treated them well and honorably. The Dhondoros are immortal unless slain.

© Copyright 2010 - Nicholas Cloister