Sunday, 9 August 2015

1d10 Weird Forest Guardians

In The Last Day Dawned, all forests are rich with spirits: from tiny leaf-sprites with wooden skin who watch passers-by, impassively, to mighty spiritual creatures who embody the collective essence of the forests around them, to possessed vessels who tirelessly guard the forest. They can be spoken to, bargained with, exorcised and battled; but only the destruction of their charges will put them down forever. In regions ruled by Humans, they are tamed or destroyed where possible. In regions ruled by Elves or Fey, they are integrated as vassals, tributaries or overlords. They are essentially the Holy Fools of the Druidic faith; and can be battled to advance in that hierarchy. All are weak to cold iron and whatever folklore weirdness pisses off fairies in your personal world.

  1.  An enormous mass of chattering, colourful insects. They form and reform into patterns that display their intends. Will accept sacrifices and consume them utterly, preferring symbols of cultivation and domesticity: farm-animals, what-crops, kings. Takes half damage from direct attacks.
  2. An ancient tree, decked with hangman's ropes, with rotting corpses hanging from each. Communicates using the droning voices of the dead. Will claim that willingly hanging oneself from the branches will confer access to primordial wisdom (DM's discretion whether this is true). Stationery but can Awaken nearby foliage and fauna.
  3. An enormous, primordial incarnation of the predatory: a horned-wolf of enormous size that can move silently at will. Desires rarer beasts to consume; respects only might in battle, and will actively hunt members of the Druidic faith to prove the extent of its dominion. 
  4. A possessed statue of an prehistoric fertility goddess whose cult has long vanished into obscurity: enormously fat with huge, exposed pudenda. Despite being of stone, the statue can birth living creatures, and is said to grant fertility to the infertile. Any union consummated in the spirit's presence will result in a viable pregnancy - presumably of some hideous, unnatural progeny. Such abominations guard her grove. 
  5. Two halves: a beautiful Dryad, a Fey Knight: both have skin displaying identical scarification. They are searching for each other in the vastness of the forest, but will purposefully never encounter one another. Will try to draw PCs into ceaseless game of cat and mouse. PCs will then encounter other searchers who have been aiding the couple for days or weeks. If challenge about their behaviour they will attempt murder.
  6. Old Drindle, an impossibly calm, childlike giant. Easy to confuse or mislead. Desires diversion, and secretly yearns for the products of the industry: iron, books, mechanical toys. Casts spells as a Druid. 
  7. A Druid of great age who became a Willing Vessel of the spirit years before. He diligently discharges his duties in ensuring the cycle of forest life turns, but has become distressed as the erosion of his humanity. When the spirit wills him to kill innocents and reduce them to fertiliser, his heart quails. Secretly yearns for the release of death. 
  8. A troll-witch with three docile, obedient troll husbands: she cuts out their entrails and reads the omens therein, relying on their healing to keep them alive. She misuses her gift of prophecy liberally to pursue petty vengeance against local covens of witches, hags and the like who refuse to acknowledge her dominion. 
  9. A child, raised by wolves just reaching adulthood . A Feral Druid of considerable power. Thinks of themselves as a wolf but is experiencing an awkward sexual awakening for which there is no explanation from the wise beings of their forest kingdom; believes symptoms of puberty caused by demons or a curse. Very interested in one of your PCs.
  10. A prey-animal of rare and wondrous beauty: an Elk with skin made from moonlight. Elusive and skittish. Desires protection from uppity vassal-beasts or the Wild Hunt or suchlike. Has tricksy defensive magic: Mirror Image, Blur and similar. 

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