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CATEGORY: Dark Faerie
TERRAIN: Steep cliffs and stone towers
AGGRESSION: Normal (to high)
SIZE: 4 feet (120 cm) tall, without tail.
INTELLIGENCE: 3-4 (18 - see 'Description')
MENTAL RESILIENCE: 4-7 (18 - see 'Description')
(If stats of humans range from 3 to 18)
SPEED: Run x 0,1, Fly (eagle x 2)
(Multiple is times human speed)
MAGIC POWER: 5
(Ranges from 0-100)
HIT POINTS: 5-9
(If a human commoner has about 11 hit points)
The skin and fur of the Gharlakans are light enough to allow flight, and give only moderate protection.
2 WING CLAWS: 1-4 (1-6 when swooping)
2 FEET CLAWS: 1-6
1 BITE/BEAK: 1-4 (1-6 when swooping)
1 TAIL: 2-6
(If a Long Sword causes 1-8 points of damage)
The Gharlakans prefer to attack at speed, diving down towards their enemies. They either change direction quickly to lash with their jagged tails, or crash straight into targets with their pointy wings and beaks first.
DARK SILENCE: When two or more in number, the Gharlakans can generate a field of silence. This is not a mere lack of sound, but a physical experience of mute density. Attempting to talk or scream in this silence will make a thick black smoke come out of the mouth, and other loud sources of sound will equally leave trails of darkness in the air. The flapping of the Gharlakan wings thus produce a shadowy haze around them, making them hard to see, as well as impossible to hear. The size of the field is a 60 feet (20 m) diameter globe, increased by another 60 feet for every 2 additional Gharlakans. It lasts for 10-20 rounds and may be produced 3 times per day. The Gharlakans cannot attack while initiating the field of Dark Silence, which takes one round. Rolls of initiative, and skills dependent on hearing (and sight in some cases), should of course be penalized while under this spell.
PSIONIC CHILL: The Gharlakans are dark faerie creatures, magical by nature, and mysterious to encounter. They radiate an ancient pagan darkness, which causes a chill in the hearts of normal creatures and beings. The Gharlakans can willfully increase this chill by mentally directing their essence towards specific individuals. When doing so they can't perform any other attack, but success is otherwise automatic. The effect of this power varies with the mental capacities of the victim. A saving throw vs Mental Resilience results in 0-2 (success) to 2-4 (failure) points of inner cold damage. Since this wound is purely mental, it heals at once if the Gharlakan is slain. As such, it still weakens the heart, which obeys all signals of the brain. This power can actually kill, and is the Gharlakans' main weapon toward heavily armored enemies.
Tiny, winged, and wicked, the smallest of dark faeries sometimes invade magpie nests, to curse selected eggs with strange and eerie magic. In such a way the Gharlakans are born, and come into power by feeding on their half-siblings. Finally they consume their parents, leave the nests, and take off into the world able and flying.
A year later, when fully grown, the creatures seek out others of their species, and make with them an aerie upon the top of a steep cliff or dark tower. They then level the top of the chosen pinnacle and commence the creation of a magical portal. To succeed with this feat, at least six Gharlakans must work in unison.
Perched in a circular formation, facing outward to protect the center, the creatures make a dome with their long tails, and thus initiate their purpose. A cold blue or turquoise flame is born, and slowly starts growing into a shining dome of power. This is a portal to the clandestine realms of the Dark Faerie. From this gateway their master will emerge. Opening such a rift takes seven days. At all times at least five Gharlakans must remain in position to keep it active. All others may leave to defend the portal, and to gather food.
The Gharlakans are servant creatures. Their only mission is to bring a greater faerie power into the world, when times are ripe for such entries. Once mature, and in the company of other Gharlakans, the creatures telepathically connect with their still hidden master, and abandon all self-governing. While up to that point, they have relied on acute hearing and touch to maneuver, they now see, think, and feel, through the telepathic powers of the Greater Faerie. To manifest and protect a portal, is the sole purpose of the Gharlakan life. If that succeeds it will shield and obey whatever comes out through the gateway, acting as if one with it.
The Gharlakans are swift and silent flyers, that hunt at night. Their wings are short, and the creatures spend a lot of energy flying. Most of the time they sit perched somewhere, feasting on prey, or scanning the surrounding areas for dangers. On the ground they are slow and awkward, so they avoid landing there.
Genderless and without need to procreate, the creatures have no concerns but keeping strong and joining forces with others. They do not communicate, but act as a single and perfectly coordinated will, due to the mental connection with the same faerie power. Their smell is reminiscent of wet dogs, they move jerkily like birds, but in fashion that reveals knowledge, and with an expression that conveys intelligent malice. Two hundred years may pass before a Gharlakan body disintegrates. Usually they are called to duty well before that.
(Check out more creatures in the 'Creature Archive' menu to the left.)
© Copyright 2011 - Nicholas Cloister