Monday, October 15, 2012

Bronzeel

Bronzeel
No. Enc.: 1 (0)
Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Movement: 30' (10')
Armor Class: 5
Hit Dice: 1-12
Attacks: 2 (Tail-bash or Bite)
Damage: 1d4/2d6 (+1 per HD)
Save: MU1+HD
Morale: (equal to HD)

Special: Upon achieving 3HD a Bronzeel gains the ability to cast spells as a first-level Magic User. They gain new spells by devouring portions of the brains of spell casters, physically removing the structural mechanisms pertaining to a specific memorized spell from the victim. Every 6 points of damage inflicted upon any one victim requires a Save to avoid the loss of one memorized spell of first level. The Bronzeel can choose to attach itself instead of draining a first level spell and continue to inflict damage, gaining the option to remove a higher level spell at double the cost (12 points for a Second Level spell, 24 points to gain a Third Level spell, 48 points to take a Fourth Level spell, etc.) This damage can be healed, but the spell is lost and must be re-learned from scratch. There are unverified rumors of variant forms of Bronzeels that remove their victims capacity to cast spells, in effect removing spell slots/reducing the number of spells a victim can cast per day.

ImmunitiesCharm, Sleep or ESP.

Weird, wrinkly and worm-like denizens of the Interstitial Regions, Bronzeels can only enter into the manifest world by passing through flat sections of bronze. The particular geometry and the specific chemistry of flat-sided bronze objects are essential for a Bronzeel to migrate across layers and levels of reality; they cannot cross-over without it.

Ancient cultures who had knowledge of these creatures avoided leaving flat sections of bronze exposed in their architecture, armaments, or apparatus. Bronze mirrors are an especially favorite vector for Bronzeels. Bronzeels can 'swim' through bronze (treat as a limited form of Passwall), so it provides no protection from these creatures and in some cases may in fact offer them access as they can simply wriggle through heavy bronze portals or doors or armor.

Coming (un)Attraction
At first a Bronzeel appears as a sort of 'blemish' in the surface of some flat bronze surface. Over the course of a few hours (2d4) the 'blemish' grows more distinct and detailed. Eventually the 'blemish' rises to the surface and begins to peel itself free. It takes (1d4) minutes to accomplish this, during which time the Bronzeel is particularly vulnerable and unable to defend itself. Once it has wriggled itself loose, it begins life in this new world as a 1 HD creature with a voracious appetite for any and every form of encoded media available such as books, sacred texts, illuminated scrolls, tax rolls, records, political treatises, correspondence, memos, dispatches, hastily scribbled notes, journals, diaries, signs, graffitti, inscriptions, tapestries, billboards, posters, broadsheets, pamphlets, and so on. They can sense these things, detect them within a 60' radius, and will seek them out tirelessly.

Obscure Arts & Crafts
The tail of a Bronzeel is a dense, hard knob that it wields like a mace. The tail-knobs of Bronzeels of more than 3HD can be harvested and converted into +1 maces by suitably talented weapons-crafters. The smaller tail-knobs have sometimes been used as the basis for ornaments, brooches and even scarabs, but the odd chemistry of the things require the use of special reagents and solvents, as well as a firm knowledge of the intrinsic geometries involved, making this highly specialized knowledge. For the most part these techniques have been lost or forgotten, though there might be special treatises detailing the underlying principles and processes locked away within the dusty workshops of dead masters or buried alongside the ancient practitioners of such long-lost arts.

Second Thoughts
Illiterate and sleepless, they cannot be taught, will not be tamed. They have no language, and are not truly conscious in any sense recognizable by mammals. What spells they can cast, they do so randomly, wildly, without any rhyme or reason. Creatures of raw intuition and pure instinct, Bronzeels hunt out the brains of spell-casters with an obsessive zeal. They will avoid those who cannot cast spells when possible, preferring to by-pass these unpalatable sorts of beings in their endless, restless hunt for suitable brains. They will only strike non-spell casters out of self-defense, as they cannot gain proper nutrition from the brains of those incapable of casting spells.

Vestiges of Dubious Old Traditions
Nuisances and pests, much reviled by familiars, students and apprentices alike, the Bronzeel is a singular menace to those learned in the ways of spell-casting. It is for this reason that they are sometimes used to guard rooms or to discourage specific sorts of trespassers. There is a wide variety of enchanted effigies, binding-charms, and other such techniques that have been employed by various ancient cultures to ward off or to hold Bronzeels out of certain sections of their tomb complexes, even as there are other methods for keeping the things in-place, suspended or rendered inert until properly triggered as part of a trap. But such installations are uncommon for the most part.

Few want anything to do with such creatures, but they can be summoned. It just takes a flat section of bronze and a modified Summoning spell...


2 comments:

  1. Another glimpse into what the fantastic can be if we put the effort in. You almost remake a part of the landscape with every post. These can get pretty big too. Do they ever migrate back? I'm wondering if anyone ever followed them...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Porky. I've been doodling in a new sketchbook since we wanted to double our monster-count for the bestiary.

      Monsters can reveal a great deal about a setting, even more than random tables. We like to look at the implications and opportunities each monster presents or provides. A lot of fun stuff can come about in a game when someone realizes that a particular monster can be exploited economically, or whatever.

      Yep. These things do get big. So far no one has followed one back, at least not that anyone knows about at present. Since these beasts tend to infest more archaic Bronze-Age tombs and crypts, maybe some one did indeed conduct such a study/expedition, but whatever accounts or records they left behind might still be buried, sealed-away or just waiting to be dug out by more modern adventurers...

      There is also the possibility of a scholar subsidizing a group willing to look into this matter...

      Delete

Thanks for your comment. We value your feedback and appreciate your support of our efforts.

ShareThis