Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Ahool

Thank You Ernst Haekel
“I can't say I'm unhappy about it,' added the bard, 'I get along well enough with mice, and I've always been fond of birds, but when you put the two together I'd just as soon avoid them.”
by Lloyd Alexander


Ahool
No. Enc.: 1d4
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: 60' (20')
          Fly: 180'
Armor Class: 7 [12]
Hit Dice: 3
Attacks: 1 (bite or claw)
Damage: 1d4 (Save or suffering Bleeding [see below]) / 1d4 (Save or be knocked prone)
Save: F1
Morale: 8

Special: The victim of an Ahool's bite attack must roll a Save or suffer 1d4 points of damage per round for the next 1d4 rounds from excessive bleeding. 

Huge bats covered in mouse-gray fur with ten-to-twelve-foot wingspans, the Ahool are notorious for carrying off small children and young farm animals. They also are fond of fish and have been known to actively hunt Fog Fish such as Red Herring. The Ahool are nearly as quiet as an owl, and often strike with surprise as a Thief (+4 to hit, double damage on first attack).

All other types of bats avoid the Ahool. On the other hand owls will attack them until one or the other is dead. When the owls win they carry off the eviscerated Ahool carcass deep into forested areas where they drop them into steep ravines or other trackless, difficult to find areas. If the Ahool wins they consume the owl then hunt-out its nest in order to devour any eggs they might find. It is for this reason that Strixin have come to loathe and revile the Ahool, and why they have begun to trap the beasts using special snares and nets in order to feed them to giant owls.

Winged Monkeys suffer a -4 penalty to Morale when confronted by Ahool, especially when they make their infamous 'AHHhoooooollll!' cry that can be heard for miles.

Ahool are not native to the region. Those encountered around Wermspittle were originally brought into the area on the Airships, sometimes as pets or mascots, other times as experimental test-subjects. There are numerous travelers' tales and unsubstantiated rumors of larger specimens being encountered in the Septagoorean Archipelago where their guano is an integral part of the manufacture of gun powder.


Source of Inspiration: The Ahool is a type of flying cryptid that may or may not be native to one or more of the islands of Indonesia. 

4 comments:

  1. Haekel is such an iconic and influential natural history illustrator.

    I also used one of his pieces for real-world background for my parasite zombies.

    http://leicestersramble.blogspot.com/2014/10/parasite-zombies.html

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    1. I'm a big fan of Haekel's illustrations. Incredible stuff.
      Those zombies are nasty in all the right ways. There is something really icksome about parasites like that, or cordiceps fungi...ew...you don't need undead when NPCs have werms or fungi in the brain...

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  2. Good stuff--and nice to see a Prydain quote.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks. Alexander is a great author. I haven't read all the Prydain stuff yet, but plan on picking up the rest one of these days, probably after the Holidays and things settle down again. I was just reminded about the Black Cauldron movie. Wonder if that's on Youtube...

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