"Far over the Misty Mountains cold
to dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away ere break of day
To seek the pale enchanted gold..."
Originally Posted by PercyllanthronoxPercyllanthronox, A.K.A. Percy the Pilferer, A.K.A. Percy the Pest
SpoilerShowHatching a Player
Amid the flickering of torchlight, Professor Arthur McKinnick was supervising the packing of several crates of artifacts from the newly discovered chambers of the dig. There were many pieces of intact pottery and the like that would make excellent additions to the museum's collection, and even more pieces that he would be able to sell off on the side to the rich nobility of Sharn. The porters sealed up each crate as they packed them and marked them for delivery to Morgrave University's Dezina Museum. All was going well until he heard a fragile cracking sound behind him. He spun around, his eyes furious as he saw what one of the porters had dropped. "Careful you idiot! Do you have any idea how valuable those are?" He stooped to examine the black and purple egg, and his face fell when he saw that it was ruined, the creature inside dead. He sent the porter crashing to the floor with a solid swing of his cane, and stood over the now cowering hobgoblin glowering at him. "There were only two of those! Each one is worth more than you will ever be!" He accented his anger with another two swift strikes of his cane before leaving the now unconscious hobgoblin to the care of his fellow porters. McKinnick moved to retrieve the last surviving egg and packed it carefully himself. Pseudodragon eggs were a hot commodity on the black market, and judging by the trouble they had in putting down the mother, this one would be especially valuable. At least the mother's corpse could be preserved, perhaps it might fetch a reasonable amount of coin.
Making the Grade
Professor McKinnick slammed the door to his office and sat down with a heavy sigh. Stacks of term papers were piled high on his desk next to the mostly untouched sandwich that was his lunch and a dusty old tome on the history of Xen'drik. "Pompous, fat-bottomed, lazy, sanctimonious..." he grumbled as he searched his desk drawer for the bottle of Ghallandan whiskey he kept there. He poured himself a drink and tossed it back.
You're grumbling again, a voice like silk whispered in his mind. "You already know why Percy, he chewed my ear off for nearly an hour," he responded angrily, and poured himself a new drink. The voice took on a sharper tone, Percyllanthronox, the little dragon corrected him, And it's mine, not his. He would do well to remember that. Stealing from my hoard would be a fatal mistake. The Professor shook his head, "That gold pocket watch was given to the Dean by his..." the voice in his head cut him off, I found another likely location for the lost hoard of Xovostell. I bookmarked it for you. That got his attention, and he leaned forward to open the tome on his desk. As he read, the voice continued, You'll need to outfit an expedition of at least twenty men. There is going to be some digging involved, and you need to make sure you bring enough... The voice continued on, detailing the needs of their future expedition, and the Professor smiled. Keeping the little pseudodragon after it had hatched was proving to be the most profitable sensible decision he had ever made, despite a few run-ins with the city watch about missing personal property.
Professor McKinnick broke through into the chamber beyond, his torch blowing out in the rushing escape of air that had been trapped inside for centuries. He took a moment to re-light his torch as he felt the little pseudodragon fly past him to examine the room. The Professor could hear him flitting about in the darkness beyond, and he could hear the little dragon's excitement in his head. As soon as his torch flickered back to life, he looked around the chamber. The walls were filled with ancient pictographs and religious markings. There were a number of arcane sigils that decorated the floor, and a small pedestal in the center of the chamber where the little pseudodragon perched looking intently into what appeared to be a small silver mirror. But there was no dragon hoard in sight. The room didn't even look large enough to comfortably house a dragon twice the size of the little pseudodragon.
"Well, unless you've found something incredibly valuable, I'd say we just wasted a fortune on an expedition to an empty room." He idly kicked some stones across the floor, "I don't know how I let you talk me into this, but this is the last time I ..." BE SILENT the pseudodragon roared in his mind. Abruptly, the Professor stopped talking. Seconds turned into minutes as the little dragon studied his find before the Professor spoke up again. "I see nothing here that was worth expense of this expedition." The little dragon looked up from his perch, and then picked up the small silver shard and flitted over. That is because you lack both intelligence, and conviction. This, the little dragon held the shard up, is a piece of a divine conduit of power. With it, I will take what power I wish from the gods and blend it with my own.
The workmen unloading the crates from the cart looked up as Professor McKinnick strode angrily into the warehouse, a scroll held high in his hands. "PERCY!" he shouted, "Show yourself you little nitwit! If you think you can steal my share of the profits, you are sorely mistaken!" He cast his gaze around the warehouse frantically until the little pseudodragon flew down from the rafters to land atop a crate. Percyllanthronox. Calm yourself Professor. Your shouting might draw the attention of the city watch.
The Professor threw the scroll at the little dragon and pointed an accusing finger in its direction, "Screw you and the city watch! Where is my money? Did you really think you can steal from me you arrogant little slime?" The little dragon regarded the Professor evenly, Arthur, I will not tolerate this insolence. And make no mistake, the money is MINE. I simply provide you a small living stipend, as I do many of my agents.
McKinnick stood there for a moment with his mouth agape. He couldn't believe what he was hearing. "You honestly believe that, don't you? This ... this isn't some game for your amusement! You aren't some grand mastermind!" The little dragon's voice echoed imperiously in his mind, Oh but it is a game professor. The greatest game, and this is how I announce myself. You see, the treasure we 'recovered' in the Mournlands was what is called a 'seed hoard'. I happen to know who it belonged to, and he will not be very happy to find it missing. Now of course I don't want him to know directly that it was I who took his pieces, so I still have one move left to make. The little dragon looked down as the workmen cracked open a crate to reveal the magically preserved bodies of several men dressed in strange livery. Another crate was opened to reveal the well preserved corpse of the pseudodragon the Professor had killed when he stole Percyllanthronox's egg. He looked back up to Professor McKinnick and continued, When he investigates the matter, he will find all the evidence he needs to see that you and your cohorts here were working for one of his rivals, a notoriously violent Green with a brutish playstyle. Naturally he will strike back, and the conflict will earn me a great deal of prestige. The little dragon flashed a wicked smile at the thought, then frowned at the Professor's confused look. Really Arthur, I had hoped you would be able to grasp at least that much. But such is the way of the game. One must sometimes sacrifice pawns to gain the upper hand. Oh, that reminds me, do you remember Sergeant Kohl here? You probably don't, he was just a porter back then, but I can assure you, he remembers you.
One of the workmen, a wicked looking hobgoblin with a disfigured face, stepped menacingly towards the professor and drew his blade ...
SpoilerShowPercyllanthronox, A.K.A. Percy the Pilferer, A.K.A. Percy the Pest
NE Dark Pseudodragon Beguiler 8/Ur-Priest 2/Mystic Theurge 8
Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features 1st Pseudodragon RHD 1 +1 +2 +2 +2 Hide 4, Knowledge(Arcana) 4, Knowledge(The Planes) 4, Knowledge(Religion) 4, Listen 4, Move Silently (2), Search 4, Sense Motive 4, Spot 4 Educated 2nd Pseudodragon RHD 2 +2 +3 +3 +3 Diplomacy 1, Hide 5, Knowledge(Arcana) 5, Knowledge(The Planes) 5, Knowledge(Religion) 5, Listen 5, Search 5, Sense Motive 5, Spot 5 Fly 60ft. (Good), +4 Natural Armor, Sting (1d3 plus poison), Bite (1), Blindsense 60ft., Darkvision 60ft., Immunity to Sleep and Paralysis, Low-light vision, SR 19, Telepathy 60ft. 3rd Beguiler 1 +2 +3 +3 +5 Bluff 3, Hide 6, Knowledge(Arcana) 6, Knowledge(Religion) 6, Search 6, Spellcraft 2 Iron Will Armored Mage, Spellcasting, Trapfinding 4th Beguiler 2 +3 +3 +3 +6 Bluff 6, Hide 7, Knowledge(Religion) 7, Search 7, Spellcraft 5 Cloaked Casting (+1 DC), Surprise Casting 5th Beguiler 3 +3 +4 +4 +6 Hide 8, Knowledge(Religion) 8, Move Silently 5, Search 8, Spellcraft 8 Advanced Learning (Distract Assailant) 6th Beguiler 4 +4 +4 +4 +7 Hide 9, Move Silently 9, Search 9, Use Magic Device 1, Collector of Stories Spell Focus (Evil) 7th Ur-Priest 1 +4 +4 +4 +9 Bluff 10, Concentration 1 Spellcasting 8th Ur-Priest 2 +5 +4 +4 +10 Concentration 5, Spellcraft 9 Rebuke Undead 9th Mystic Theurge 1 +5 +4 +4 +12 Concentration 7, Hide (10), Spellcraft 10 Darkstalker +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 10th Mystic Theurge 2 +6 +4 +4 +13 Concentration 11, Knowledge(Religion) 9 +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 11th Mystic Theurge 3 +6 +5 +5 +13 Concentration 12, Hide (11), Knowledge(Arcana) 7, Knowledge(Religion) 10 +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 12th Mystic Theurge 4 +7 +5 +5 +14 Concentration 13, Knowledge(Arcana) 9, Move Silently (10) Mindsight +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 13th Mystic Theurge 5 +7 +5 +5 +14 Concentration 15, Hide (12), Knowledge(Arcana) 10 +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 14th Mystic Theurge 6 +8 +6 +6 +15 Concentration 16, Hide (13), Move Silently (11) +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 15th Mystic Theurge 7 +8 +6 +6 +15 Concentration 17, Hide (14), Move Silently (12) Versatile Spellcaster +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 16th Mystic Theurge 8 +9 +6 +6 +16 Concentration 18, Hide (15), Move Silently (13), Spellcraft 11 +1 level of existing Arcane spellcasting class/+1level of existing Divine spellcasting class 17th Beguiler 5 +9 +8 +6 +18 Concentration 19, Hide 19, Move Silently 14, Search 13 Silent Spell 18th Beguiler 6 +9 +8 +6 +18 Concentration 20, Hide 20, Move Silently 15, Search 20 Draconic Aura(Swiftness) Surprise Casting (Move Action) 19th Beguiler 7 +10 +9 +7 +19 Concentration 22, Hide 21, Move Silently 21, Search 21 Advanced Learning (Shadow Conjuration, Greater) 20th Beguiler 8 +10 +9 +7 +19 Concentration 23, Hide 23, Move Silently 23, Search 23, Spellcraft 14 Cloaked Casting (+2 to overcome SR)
Starting Ability Scores:
Str - 6
Dex - 16
Con - 14
Int - 17
Wis - 16
Cha - 11
Final Ability Scores:
Str - 6
Dex - 16
Con - 14
Int - 18 (16th)
Wis - 19 (4th, 8th, 12th)
Cha - 12 (20th)
Spells Per Day
Spoiler: Beguiler SpellsShow
Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 1st - - - - - - - - - - 2nd - - - - - - - - - - 3rd 5 3 - - - - - - - - 4th 6 4 - - - - - - - - 5th 6 5 - - - - - - - - 6th 6 6 3 - - - - - - - 7th 6 6 3 - - - - - - - 8th 6 6 3 - - - - - - - 9th 6 6 4 - - - - - - - 10th 6 6 5 3 - - - - - - 11th 6 6 6 4 - - - - - - 12th 6 6 6 5 3 - - - - - 13th 6 6 6 6 4 - - - - - 14th 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - - - 15th 6 6 6 6 6 4 - - - - 16th 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - - 17th 6 6 6 6 6 6 4 - - - 18th 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - 19th 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 4 - - 20th 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 -
Spoiler: Cleric SpellsShow
Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 1st - - - - - - - - - - 2nd - - - - - - - - - - 3rd - - - - - - - - - - 4th - - - - - - - - - - 5th - - - - - - - - - - 6th - - - - - - - - - - 7th 4 2 - - - - - - - - 8th 5 3 0 - - - - - - - 9th 5 3 1 0 - - - - - - 10th 6 3 2 1 0 - - - - - 11th 6 3 3 2 1 0 - - - - 12th 6 3 3 3 2 1 0 - - - 13th 6 4 3 3 3 2 1 0 - - 14th 6 4 4 3 3 3 2 1 0 - 15th 6 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1 0 16th 6 5 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1 17th 6 5 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1 18th 6 5 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1 19th 6 5 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1 20th 6 5 5 4 4 4 4 3 2 1
Early on, Percy is mostly a support character. He's got a wealth of knowledges, reasonable spot and listen skills for scouting (as well as blindsense), and is a great skulker with his size and sneaking skills. He's also got a great Search skill + Trapfinding, so he can point out traps should he wish to. His Beguiler spells help round out his role as a face character, and if push comes to shove, he can contribute in combat as a flanking buddy with his Sting attack (which has a 5' reach, so he doesn't suffer the normal tiny character problem of having to move into his foe's space to attack. Percy uses his Advanced Learning to pick up the Distract Assailant spell. This spell will let him make foes flat-footed, which is useful not only for the party rogue, but also for Percy's Cloaked Casting ability. All the other goodies that Percy has, the Dark Creature template, flight, SR, and natural armor will help him scout and stay alive.
Now Percy is really ramping up the power. He's still got his very useful array of Beguiler spells (up to 3rd level)
4th level cleric spells and 3rd level beguiler spells. He picked up the Collector of Stories skill trick to help keep his Knowledge advantage up to par, and Darkstalker makes an appearance to keep his stealth abilities good. Ur-Priest is the big power bump here, however, and with 4th level Cleric spells at his beck and call, Percy can be quite a force to be reckoned with. All the main Cleric spell optimization tricks will work here except for Divine Metamagic (Percy largely doesn't need to be Clericzilla, so it's not something he'll miss). Guidance of the Avatar (+15 to a skill check, eventually) will be a particularly useful 2nd level spell for him.
Percy has access to a dizzying array of spells, thanks to Mystic Theurge. He's got 9th level cleric spells a full two levels earlier than clerics get them, and 6th level Beguiler spells. The Mindsight and Versatile Spellcaster feats give him a huge boost in his scouting and spellcasting abilities, adding an extremely useful sense and a huge level of versatility. Percy is back to amping up his stealth skills as well, meaning he's still ridiculously hard to spot.
Percy finishes off with access to a whopping 8th level Beguiler spells and 9th level Cleric spells. His stealth abilities are excellent, and he can find just about anything. He uses his Advanced Learning from Beguiler to pick up Greater Shadow Conjuration, which adds a large variety of damage spells and utility spells. He picked up the Draconic Aura feat at 18th level, and uses it to up his speed to levels similar to that of his larger draconic cousins.
SpoilerShowThe Dragon Type
So, just how does Percy leverage the Dragon type? Well, to me that means a few things. Dragons have innate flight. Dragons have a breath weapon. Dragons have spontaneous arcane casting. Dragons have mutliple natural attacks. Dragons have excellent senses. Dragons are knowledgeable. And dragons have Spell Resistance. So Percy needs to fit into those roles. He's got innate flight (at a much better maneuverability than most dragons), and he bumps that up the Swiftness Draconic Aura. Because he's a dragon, he gets the good advancement on his Draconic Aura. As a Beguiler, Percy has spontaneous arcane spellcasting (and Versatile Spellcaster enchances that). He's got mutliple natural attacks, albeit they come in a different form than his larger cousins. The Venomfire Spell (Cleric 3, Serpent Kingdoms) can let him pile on his Cleric Caster level of extra d6 damage when he delivers his Tail Sting attack. Percy's blindsense, telepath, Mindsight, and sensory skills make for a very good case for his having excellent senses. With his variety of knowledge skills and the Collector of Stories skill trick, Percy is very knowledgeable. As far as Spell Resistance is concerned, Percy comes with SR built-in, and it is better that it should be (many creatures with innate SR have it at 11+HD). And lastly, a breath weapon. Percy doesn't have one, but his very ample spellcasting provides him with all the direct damage capability he could want.
Using Ur-Priest and Beguiler, Percy is able to hit 9th/8th level spellcasting in divine/arcane. Not only that, but he is able to do more than just cast arcane and divine spells, as Beguiler gives him some excellent skills and abilities. Versatile Spellcaster helps him add some ability to nova, so that he can use up all those extra spells (and it may be possible to use it with his Cleric spell slots, depending on how your DM rules it). Also, his Beguiler spellcasting abilities (Cloaked Casting and Surprise Casting) can be used with his Cleric casting for added oomph.
SpoilerShowPlayer's Handbook (Iron Will, Spell Focus)
Monster Manual (Pseudodragon)
Player's Handbook 2 (Beguiler)
Dungeon Master's Guide (Mystic Theurge)
Lords of Madness (Darkstalker, Mindsight)
Races of the Dragon (Versatile Spellcaster)
Dragon Magic (Draconic Aura)
Eberron Campaign Setting (Educated)
Complete Adventurer (Distract Assailant spell)
Complete Scoundrel (Collector of Stories)