Thursday, June 26, 2014

Three and a Half Extradimensional Adventurers

These are all humanoids.  Or at least, they have have two legs, two arms, and a head in the usual place, unless otherwise noted.

red lotus
not even once
Krulhir the Sublimator

He is nine feet tall, six feet wide.  Skin is thick and puckered, like an abused lemon.  Not so much corpulent as he is full.  Arms and legs have atrophied, and resemble stretched out baby-arms poking from his body.  Talks in a falsetto.  Starmetal skullcap is bolted over his eyes, with a pinhole in the center that is actually a portal to black space near canopus.  Negative pressure--air is constantly being sucked into his head, a quiet but shrill whistling sound. 

From his bolted-on helmet hang a bunch of black twine (or at least it looks like twine).  This twine is woven into a net that supports his body.  It keeps him pear-shaped.  Can you picture a 100-gallon water balloon wrapped up snug in a fishing net?  It's like that.

Krulhir is a wizard, sort of.  Where he comes from, he is not considered a wizard, merely a dabbler, but he has a powerful tolerance for gravity and dense atmospheres.  He sweats ammonia.  He is looking for a unicorn to bring back with him.  He is actually very humble, naive, and fearful.  He's like a 7 HD wizard, worst possible AC, with a hover speed equal to a walk.  If he is injured, his mercurial ioun stones will accelerate to fantastic speeds, orbiting body like bullets.  He bleeds milky water from which will sprout pale cilia that will thrash for a day and then die out.  In addition to the stuff in the next paragraph, he knows the spells animate teeth, infectious starlight, reverse object's gravity (permanent), and ultra-magnetokinesis.

From the solar pinhole in his forhead, he can shoot fireballs.  Except they don't look like fireballs.  They don't look like anything at all.  They don't even make any noise, just things start to blacken, evaporate.  It's pyrolysis--slow combustion in the absence of oxygen--but it functions like a fireball spell.  No flame, nor ashes.  Charcoal.  There is also a silence effect in there, too, so there is no noise.  Stealth explosions.  If you watch a bunch of peasants get hit by it, you'll see them be swallowed up by a superheated-but-gently-wafting cloud of steam, which will reveal charcoal mummies frozen in various poses of disbelief.

He is travelling with a quartet of bald, blue-skinned, elephant-nosed space orcs who intend to kill and rob him as soon as possible.

honey, did you remember to feed the dog?
we have a dog?
Malala Kurema Kazhonn (emphasis on the second syllable of each word)

Seven feet tall, looks like an albino python out of the corner of your eye.  Then you get a better look at her, and realize that she actually is human.  Or at least she looks human.  Her eyes are pink pearls, and she moves like a bag full of snakes.

Because that's what she is.  Malala Kurema Kazhonn is a member of a moon-dwelling species of necroparasitic metacnidarians (relative to the freshwater, microscopic hydras).  She has spend her whole life worshipping humans (which are rare on the moon) and ensuring that the humans (sacred pets of the temple) are protected against those who would injure them.

When one of the sacred human-pets died, she was given the great honor of being allowed to inhabit its body.  She lost 880 lbs in 24 hours in order to fit into the dead human's body.  It was a painful process, and she had never been so honored.  Now that she has left her polyp life stage and entered her medusa stage, she has finally become an adult.

She's here to obtain some fresh breeding stock for the holy temple-humans in her lunar enclave.  When she first encountered humans "in the wild", she was at first shocked, then disgusted, then resigned.  These planetary humans are unhealthy, uneducated, cruel, boorish, and filthy.  Still, it's her duty to capture a few of the less offensive specimens.  Paladins are good.  So are scholars and nobles.  She's captured six suitable specimens so far (which she keeps inside a specialized bag of holding, which looks a bit like a fanny pack) and has been able to bargain for another dozen sperm samples from suitable males (paying for them with uncut rubies).

She is accompanied by a pack of loyal displacer beasts, and rides atop a giant jellyfish.  She wears a breastplate filled with stinging cnidocysts.  On her belt she has an infinitely sharp dagger, which can cut anything, even space.  (Cutting space is a bit like hanging a mono-molecular wire in the air.  You know immovable rods?  It's like that, except really, really sharp.)  But that's just a novelty, really.

Her real weapon is an amberglass electro-scimitar-whip that she stores in her dead human's throat.  In combat, it looks like the woman is wielding it with her tongue, but really that is just Malala's tentacle (part of her real body) waving it around.  It's a long tentacle, and the electro-scimitar-whip also has a lot of reach, so she'd prefer to go quadrupedal, scuttle up on to the ceiling, and lash out with the electro-scimitar-whip (20' reach, all in all).  She has 6 HD, breastplate AC, and would rather bargain than fight to the death.  She views her mission as noble, good, and sacred, but she's no fool.

If her human body is killed, her real body will spill out and begin screaming as she exsanguinates in our harsh atmosphere.  She will attempt to take over another human body, but this is a feeble attempt that will only succeed if there is an unconscious or recently dead human nearby, and no-one molests her for a full five minutes, since she is so fragile in our atmosphere (-4 to hit, unarmored AC, 3 HD, can only crawl).

Fond of spouting incomprehensible alien parables (The Tale of the Man Raised by Jale Beans, The Priest Who Was Three Babies, The Man Inside the Man Inside the Sun, etc) in an attempt to educate the boorish races around her and make the more moral.  Has excellent maps of the world, seven hundred years out of date.  Has absolutely zero regard for children and babies, since personhood is intrinsically linked to sexual maturity.  

Has a paladin's morality, but it is an alien paladin.  Thinks that she is doing a good thing by kidnapping humans, and in a way, she's totally right about that, since the humans on the moon are treated like rich people's favorite dogs.  Good food, lots of sex with lisping moon beauties, great medical care.  The moon-priests will try to avoid the claustrophobia, but the oxygenated crust-cysts are only so big.

whatever.  you get the idea
fuck you for judging me
Vladimir and Estragon

Vladimir (or Estragon) looks like a perfectly normal naked man who is wearing a crown of fetuses.  A closer look reveals that the fetuses' skulls are conjoined with his.  Conjugated hextuplets?  That happens, right?  In truth, this is exactly what he is.  Or at least, he's was one member of conjugated hextuplets when he was born, but he's gone on to become so much more than that.

Vladimir (or Estragon) is a friendly man, although hairless and a bit too pink.  Only one of the fetuses is awake.  The other four fetuses (Nibellen, Walpurgio, Sothric, Thulotes) appear to be deeply asleep.  The six brothers are a bit like six people that share a body.  If Vladimir is the full-size human, he can squeeze his mass into Estragon (the other awake brother).  Vladimir will shrivel away into a tiny fetus, while Estragon will swell up into a full-size human.  Since they are naked twins, the only difference is which side of their head the awakened fetus is.

They are pleasant enough.  They'll chat amiably and share news as long as they aren't approached with any hostility.  If asked, they'll share that they're waiting for someone.  They're waiting for God.  Polytheism?  No, there is only one God.  He is a good and kind God.  He told them to wait here personally, but they don't remember how long ago, or how much longer until he arrives, exactly.  They don't mind.  Nothing wrong with waiting.  They're quite good at waiting.

It'll be nice when God gets here, though.  The whole world will merge with him, and everyone will be happy.  No more sadness, no more war.  No more beaten dogs.  Just bliss, just unity.  It'll only take a second, and then poof--everyone will understand everything and be happy forever.  Ecstasy.  And because we'll all know everything that everyone else knows, it's like we'll all be one person.  Vladimir and Estragon know something about being one person.  It's quite nice.  Never lonely.  You always have a sympathetic ear, right Estragon?  Right.

Oh yes, there will be so much rejoiced when God arrives to devour the sun and everything else.

THE CATCH is that Vladimir and Estragon are sitting somewhere awkward.  The PCs need to use the summoning circle that Vladimir and Estragon are sitting in.  Or they need to retrieve that throne.  Or they're sitting on part of the inscription that needs to be translated.

Under no circumstances will Vladimir, Estragon, or their brothers budge from the spot.  God ordered them to stay here.

Their special ability is theft.  Attack them with a sword and suddenly the sword is in their hands.  And suddenly your armor is gone, too.  The hextuplets are wearing it.  They cast a spell, and the party mage forgets it.  They drink a potion and suddenly it is gone from their inventory.  How strong are they?  How strong is the strongest person in your party?  

If they feel sincerely threatened, they'll also drain party members, usually starting with the strongest ones.  People who get drained will shrivel into fetus-things, only 1' tall, with a 3 in all of their physical stats.  And another of the hextuplets will inflate into a full grown person, until there's just a cartwheel of six full-sized men, joined at the head, spinning like a ferris wheel made from stolen weapons, laughing and apologizing and praying and chatting.

Honestly the best tactic would be to take off all of your equipment and charge him en mass while naked and without any spells memorized, then just headbutt him into submission.  Of course, the PCs might be dead before they realize this.

Okay, he wasn't really an adventurer.  I guess I owe you guys another one.

Lady Molassah, a.k.a. the Stain

Molassah is a woman who is also a sentient tattoo.  She is also an assassin.  She looks like something that a sailor would get tattooed in a seedy tattoo parlor, and in fact, that's exactly where she was born. 

Here's how it works: Lady Molassah is trapped on the skin of whoever she's on.  It's a bit like being marooned a smelly, hairy island (she's fond of that analogy).  But whenever that person has sex, she's able to cross over at the point of penetration.  It's like a temporary isthmus between two islands.

She can slide around quite quickly on skin, and disguise herself as any kind of lady she chooses.  She can hide in an armpit, or take a hostage by standing atop a jugular.  

Every morning, Lady Molassah makes an opposed Charisma check with her "island".  She has 18 Charisma and is a level 9 Thief.  If she wins, she gets control of the body for the day.

Did I mention that she's an assassin?  She's usually going somewhere to kill someone, in exchange for a fat wad of cash.

The PCs will meet her after one of the PCs has sex.  She'll just show up on their bodies the next morning, trying to take control of their minds so she can hope on a ship to Meltheria (or wheverever her contract takes her).  She might pose as an innocuous tramp stamp, so it might take the PCs some time to discover why one of their members has suddenly turned into an NPC and run away.

She's impatient, but she's not unreasonable.  She doesn't like unnecessary violence (but necessary violence is another story).  If she is discovered and threatened, she may try to hide (on an inner thigh or something) or take her island hostage (by sitting on a jugular and refusing to budge).  Or she might negotiate, offering to help the party in exchange for them helping her.  Or she might just demand that the tattooed PC sleep with a sailor immediately so that they can both be rid of each other.

Okay, she's not really extradimensional, but fuck it.