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Climate/Terrain:Outer Planes (Twin Paradises/Bytopia)
Frequency:Very rare
Organization:None (often domesticated)
Activity Cycle:Omnivore
Diet:Animal (1)
No. Appearing:1-4
Armor Class:4
Hit Dice:1+3
No. of Attacks:3
Special Attacks:Induce anger
Special Defenses:Cannot be surprised
Magic Resistance:Nil
Size:S (1’ long)
Morale:Average (8-10)
XP Value:175

An ethyk is a small mammalian creature similar in size and habits to a lemur, but with the ability to mentally influence the actions of other creatures. It has one singular eye on its small head, a long, somewhat prehensile tail, and claws on its four tiny legs which can be used for climbing. Its fur is usually gray, brown, or a tawny red. Its single bulbous eye is yellowwhite with a large black pupil. While the ethyk is native to both layers of Bytopia, traveling adventurprs might take it anywhere.

Combat: With hearing and a sense of smell far superior to that of humans, the ethyk cannot be surprised. Its single eye has infravision with a range of 10 feet. Its claws (1d2 points of damage each) and tooth-filled mouth (1d3) are small but dangerous, though it rarely needs to resort to physical combat when threatened.

The ethyk can influence the minds of those around it, increasing the aggressiveness, contrariness, and argumentativeness in any creature directed at some creature other than the ethyk. The wild ethyk protects itself from predators by turning them against other creatures.

This ability can be used six times each day. The ethyk’s influence has a range of 100 feet, and it affects a single creature per use for 3d4 rounds. The creature is allowed a saving throw vs. spell to resist the effect, with Wisdom bonuses added if applicable. A creature failing its saving throw feels angered and argumentative with another random target within 100 feet (excluding any ethyks).

The influenced creature may attack the object of its anger (the creature must make a successful Wisdom check or be affected; an Intelligence check can be substituted for monsters with no Wisdom rating). Anyone who tries to restrain or hinder the influenced creature may be subjected to attack. Even if there is no physical attack, the target of the victim’s aggression consumes the influenced individual’s attention for the duration of the effect, and additional checks for attacks may be required, depending on the perceived level of provocation. The influenced victim argues with and challenges everything that the hapless random target says and does. If the target is known to the influenced victim, the latter brings up any past transgressions or mistakes that the target has committed, ruthlessly dredging up old arguments and opening old emotional wounds (if any). The victim’s verbal (if not physical) assaults are so brutal and belligerent that most NPCs eventually respond with violence if they are the target.

While its enemies fight among themselves, the ethyk usually uses the distraction to slip away to safety.

Habitat/Society: In its natural environment, the solitary ethyk lives in the forests of both ot Bytopia’s layers. Using its tail and its claws, the ethyk climbs and swings from tree to tree, only rarely descending to the grnund, usually to hunt rodents or collect fallen fruit or nuts.

When captured by trappers, the ethyk is domesticated quickly. One trait that makes an ethyk a wonderful “pet” is its willingness to bond to an obviously superior creature, such as its owner. Once bonded, it uses its power to protect its master, on command if trained. Creatures influenced by bonded ethyks never focus their anger on the ethvk or its master.

Trained ethyks ride on the shoulders of their masters, often watching their backs. Most remain well behaved in public, and can be issued simple commands such as “lie down”, “sit”, “up”, “no”, and “now” (usually the command to use its power. After a longer period of training – at least a year – they ran be taught to retrieve small objects, tie knots, and attack foes physically.

Ecology: A skilled hunter in rural or urban areas, the ethyk eats rodents, small birds, snakes, and large insects. It also eats fruits, nuts, and other plant life, although it seems to prefer meat and can subsist on that alone. The ethyk contends with predators of all types, fending off wolves and birds of prey in its natural environment. Wild urban ethyki are a problem in some cities, living in the garbage of the alleyways and in ruined or abandoned buildings.

In spite of the danger of hunting these beasts, they command high prices if brought live to market, though trapping them is an activity for the strong-willed! A thriving trade – including black market smuggling in more lawful areas – in pet ethyhs has arisen on the Outer Planes, and these creatures are beginning to appear in other worlds.

Last Modified: June 10, 2010, 11:56:29 GMT

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition

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