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http://www.theworldofchinese.com/201...ghosts-primer/

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Gui

Gui (also calle Kuei) is an Acquired Template that can be applied to any Humanoid. Gui is the generic Chinese term for 'ghost'. In most cases this refers to the spirit of someone denied reincarnation and sentenced to Buddhist Hell for punishments, or who had no one to carry out the proper funerary rites for them, leaving them to be stuck in this world. They spend their time causing misfortune, or trying to right whatever circumstance cause them to become a Gui in the first place. Most are corporeal entities, with a surprisingly finite lifespan. If they run out of spiritual energy, they die again and become a legendary being known as a Jian, which terrifies ghosts just as much as they terrify humans. Their appearance varies greatly, but most are skeletal beings who wear red kerchiefs around their face to hide that they have no chin.

Size and Type: Size is unchanged, Type changes to Undead with the Incorporeal Subtype.

Hit Dice: All current and future Hit Dice become D12's, and hit points must be recalculated.

Speed: Unchanged.

Armor Class: The Gui gains a Bonus to it's AC equal to it's Charisma Modifier (minimum +1). When they are corporeal this is an increase to it's Natural Armor Bonus, when they are incorporeal it's a Deflection Bonus.

Attacks: Unchanged (but see Special Attacks).

Damage: Unchanged (but see Special Attacks).

Special Attacks: Retains all Special Attacks of the Base Creature, Plus gains Manifestation and 1 Special Attack from the following list, plus one additional Special Attack for every 4 Hit Dice it possesses:

Manifestation (Su): The Gui can turn their Incorporeal Subtype on and off as a Swift Action. When Incorporeal they are not present on the Ethereal Plane as most D&D ghosts are. Incorporeal they may be, but they are either present here or in the Spirit World.

Animate Bamboo (Su): Ghosts who are tied to bamboo trees or groves can often impale or strangle their victims with a bamboo stalk they leave lying in the path nearby. It can be wielded as a weapon doing 1d6 piercing damage, or can be wielded in a Grapple in an attempt to strangle someone. If used in a Grapple, the bamboo stalk gives a +2 Bonus to Grapple Checks meant to maintain the Grapple. While the Grapple is maintained, the victim must begin making Constitution Checks to avoid suffocation (see DMG for suffocation rules).

Bad Omen (Sp): The Gui may cast the following as Spell-Like Abilities (Caster Level is equal to Ht Dice, Save DC's are Cha based): 3/day: Bestow Curse, Mass Curse of Ill Fortune (Spell Compendium). 1/day: Bestow Greater Curse (Spell Compendium), Eyebite, Finger of Death, Seed of Undeath (Complete Mage, unlike normal the victim rises as a Gui).

Blood Drain (Ex): A gui can suck blood from a living victim by making a successful grapple check. If it pins the foe (or the foe is helpless), it drains blood, dealing 1d4 points of Constitution drain each round the pin is maintained. On each such successful attack, the gui gains 5 temporary hit points. The Gui's touch is anaesthetic, so if the target is asleep it must make an Opposed Spot vs Hide CHeck to notice he is being fed on.

Curse of Revenge (Su): The Ghost may cast Finger of Death at will as a Supernatural Ability, but is limited in it's targets. It may only use this to take revenge on those who have wronged it in life, or against those that the Gods have turned their backs upon, or if directed to do so by Lord Yama or another member of the afterlife bureaucracy.

Deceit: The Gui may cast spells as a Beguiler whose Level equals it's Hit Dice (if your campaign does not use the Beguiler Class substitute Sorcerer instead, with spells restricted to Enchantment and Illusion).

Divination: The Gui may cast spells as a Cleric whose Caster Level is equal to it's Hit Dice, but only spells from the Divination school. While many Divinations are limited to questions with yes or no answers, many Gui can answer any question of a limited subject. Ba jiao gui, for example, are limited to matters involving gambling. So they can answer questions that aren't limited to yes or no answers, but only so far as some form of gambling is concerned.

Drain (Su): Whenever the Gui is 'intimate' with a mortal Humanoid it does 1 point of Constitution Drain per session. The victim is Fatigued for 24 hours, and once his Con is Drained below half his maximum value he becomes Exhausted instead. If the Gui is killed before the victim dies this becomes temporary Ability damage, and he heals normally. Additionally, instead of healing itself of 5 damage for a successful Drain as per normal, the Gui has one of several other options it can pursue instead: It can boost the Save DC's of it's Special Attacks by 2 for 24 hours, it can become immune to Turning for 24 hours,

Frightful Moan (Su): A gui can emit a Frightful Moan as a Standard Action. All living creatures within a 30-foot spread must succeed on a Will save or become Panicked for 2d4 rounds. This is a Sonic Necromantic Mind-Affecting Fear effect. A creature that successfully saves against the moan cannot be affected by the same guiís moan for 24 hours.

Horrific Appearance (Su): Any living creature within 60 feet that views a gui must succeed on a Fortitude save or immediately take 1d4 points of Strength damage, 1d4 points of Dexterity damage, and 1d4 points of Constitution damage. A creature that successfully saves against this effect cannot be affected by the same guiís horrific appearance for 24 hours.

Hungry Touch (Su): This is a melee touch attack using the Gui's Strength or Dexterity modifier, whichever is greater. If it hits successfully the opponent takes 1d6 negative energy damage for 1 round per point of the Gui's Charisma modifier (minimum of 1 round). The victims skin begins to blacken and flake away, and if he is killed his body turns into ash. He may not be Raised or Resurrected. Hungry Touch will not work again on the same victim until the duration of the previous touch has expired.

Improved Grab (Ex): The Gui can make a Grapple Check without provoking an Attack of Opportunity. In addition, if the Gui has the Drain or Hungry Touch Special Attacks it may use them with a successful Grapple Check.

Invisibility (Su): The Gui can turn Invisible as per the Superior Invisibility (Complete Arcane) spell as will as a Swift Action, and may likewise suppress it as a Swift Action. They may also suppress it to select individuals, i.e. becoming visible to only one person in the room, or to every person but one in the room. Caster Level is equal to Hit Dice.

Madness (Su): The Gui may cast the following as Spell-Like Abilities (Caster Level is equal to Ht Dice, Save DC's are Cha based): 3/day: Confusion, Crushing Despair. 1/day: Insanity, Maddening Whispers (Spell Compendium).

Mischief (Sp): The Gui may cast the following as Spell-Like Abilities (Caster Level is equal to Ht Dice, Save DC's are Cha based): At Will: Animate Rope, Arcane Lock, Dancing Lights, Doom, Ghost Sound, Launch Item (Spell Compendium), Mage Hand, Message, Mimicry (Complete Scoundrel), No Light (Book of Vile Darkness), Open/Close, Prestidigitation, Silent Portal (Spell Compendium), Stick (Spell Compendium), Unnerving Gaze (Book of Vile Darkness). Every 1d4 rounds: Telekinesis.

Parasitic Rope (Su): Unique to the Diao si gui, they may use the rope they were hanged with as a means of convincing someone to kill himself in order for the Gui to be free. Using it the Gui can make a melee touch attack with a range of 10 ft. If it touches the bare flesh of a Humanoid creature it will immediately bond to the flesh unless the victim makes a Fortitude Save (DC is 10 plus 1/2 Hit Dice plus Charisma Modifier). To rip it back out in the first round it is attached requires a DC 20 Str Check and does 1d6 plus Str modifier to the victim. It should be noted this cannot be done barehanded as the rope will try attaching to the victims would be savior. After that round there are only two ways to remove the rope: painful surgery, or the victim must commit suicide via hanging. Each day the rope remains buried within the victim he takes one point of Constitution Drain and must make a DC 15 Willpower Check (the Save DC increases by a cumulative +1 with each passing day). If he fails the Save, he hangs himself. If he makes it, he is okay for 24 hours. Once he reaches a Constitution of 1, he gets no Save and immediately hangs himself if able. If the surgery option is taken (make sure the doctors are wearing gloves) then the surgeon must make a DC 20 Heal Check over the span of 20 Minutes. If the surgery succeeds, then the subject takes 1d6 damage, and his Con Drain converts to temporary Ability damage, healing normally at the rate of one point per day. If it fails, he takes 2d6 damage, and if it fails by 5 or more he must make a DC 20 Fortitude Save or die. A successfully cast Heal or Panacea (see Spell Compendium) spell will also remove the rope. The Gui sometimes gives this rope to a human pawn it has some sort of leverage over (usually fear based) to use on it's behalf as it cannot leave the place of it's hanging. Anyone can make an attack with the rope so long as the Gui wishes it to. At any time the Gui may recall the rope to it's hand as a Swift Action regardless of the distance separating the two.

Physical Power (Sp): The Gui may cast Tenser's Transformation as a Spell-Like Ability 3/day (Caster Level is equal to Ht Dice). Instead of the usual +4 Con, the Gui instead gains a Primary Claw Attack (1d6 plus Str modifier) and a Secondary Bite Attack (1d6 plus 1/2 Str modifier). The Gui's natural weapons are considered magic for purposes of overcoming DR.

Plague Spreader (Sp): The Gui may cast the following as Spell-Like Abilities (Caster Level is equal to Ht Dice, Save DC's are Cha based): 3/day: Contagion, Horrid Sickness (Complete Mage). 1/day: Mass Contagion (Spell Compendium), Pestilence (Book of Vile Darkness), Plague (PHBII), Pox (Book of Vile Darkness).

Possessor (Su): Once per round, an Incorporeal gui can merge its body with another creature. This ability is similar to a Magic Jar spell (caster level is equal to 10 or the Gui's Hit Dice, whichever is higher), except that it does not require a receptacle. To use this ability, the gui must try to move into the targetís space (moving into the targetís space to use the Possessor ability does not provoke Attacks of Opportunity). The target can resist the attack with a successful Will save (DC 15 + guiís Cha modifier). A creature that successfully saves is immune to that same gui's possession ability for 24 hours, and the gui cannot enter the targetís space. If the save fails, the gui vanishes into the targetís body. It then has one of two options: the first is standard possession where the Gui gains control of the subjects body. In the second the Gui does not gain control of the body, but the Possessed victim does not get Spell Resistance or Saving Throws against the Gui's Special Attacks.

Steal Life (Su): Living creatures the Gui hits by a incorporeal touch attack gain one negative level. The Fortitude Save DC is (10 plus half Hit Dice plus Charisma modifier) to remove a negative level. For each such negative level bestowed, the Gui gains 5 temporary hit points (or can use one of the other options listed under Drain above).

Strike Dumb (Su): The Gui may psychically assault victims to render them speechless. As a Full Round Action it may choose 1 opponent within 30 feet, and that victim must make a Willpower Save or be rendered incapable of revealing anything it knows about the Gui, as well as being mute. Only Break Enchantment, Dispel Evil, Miracle, Wish, or a similar spell will restore the lost memories.

Tien Sho (Su): Once per round, an Incorporeal Gui can steal another creatures body. This ability is similar to a Magic Jar spell (caster level is equal to 10 or the Gui's Hit Dice, whichever is higher), except that it does not require a receptacle. To use this ability, the gui must be corporeal and it must be Grappling the target. The target can resist the attack with a successful Will save (DC 15 + guiís Cha modifier). A creature that successfully saves is immune to that same Gui's Tien Sho ability for 24 hours. If the save fails, the gui vanishes into the targetís body. If the Save fails the Gui takes control of the targets body permanently, and the bodies owner replaces the Gui as a new Gui. This ability is unique to Shui Gui.

Zhi Ren (also called Jin tong yu nu): A pair of male and female dolls made from paper and burned as an offering to a dead relative, these paper spirits sometimes serve them in the afterlife. They function much like a pair of Familiars (see below for stats).

Special Qualities: Retains all Special Qualities of the Base Creature, plus gains Gui Limitations, Planar Travel, Rewards and any one Vulnerability from the following list. It also gains one other Special Quality from the following list for every 4 Hit Dice (at 16+ Hit Dice it may opt to lose a Vulnerability instead).

Planar Travel (Su): The Gui can use the spell Plane Shift at will, as a Supernatural Ability. It may only Plane Shift itself, and even then only to leave whatever realm of the Afterlife it inhabits for the mortal world and back again. Usually it does so under the orders of Yama or another member of the afterlife bureaucracy to punish living sinners, to get them to change their ways (or because they have offended the Gods). Gui who are not assigned to Diyu (Chinese Hell) or the Realm of Hungry Ghosts sometimes travel for other reasons, and some are bound to this world. Gui with the Bound Vulnerability gain another Ability in place of Planar Travel. Those with the Slave Vulnerability may only use it with the permission of their Master. Gui who travel to the mortal realm must return to the afterlife before the sun comes up, and those with ranks in Knowledge (The Planes) can learn the ways to travel to other Planes with a sufficient Check (Check DC is up to DM but should be at least 20+, and knowing the way there doesn't necessarily mean that it's possible for the Gui to get there. For instance, knowing the way to the Realm of the Gods doesn't mean you know the way past the Guards, who are probably far stronger than you.).

Gui Limitations: Unless they take the Deceit ability or have some other means of disguising themselves, the Gui do not look human. The stereotype is that of a skeletal, human-like figure with no chin, and no hems in their clothing. Some do not look remotely human, and some are little more than amorphous masses. Sometimes their appearance has something to do with their death. Regardless, all Gui cast no shadow, and cause flames in their presence to burn phosphorescent green. Gui cannot exist in daylight, and are compelled to return to the spirit realm or their grave during the day. They are vulnerable to various Buddhist Sutras, and various other Taoist Talismans or Wards. They cannot pass them or enter buildings upon which they're inscribed. Gui have a -1 Penalty to Saving Throws against magic that is Buddhist or Taoist in origin. With the exceptions of the Shui gui or other Gui who have perished in water, the Gui greatly dislike crossing running water, and must make a DC 20 Willpower Save to do so. Gui are also watched by the Yen-lo-hwang, or celestial police. They are allowed to be only so disruptive, else the afterlife will come for them.

Bound Vulnerability: Gui who are Bound cannot leave the mortal realm, and in some cases cannot leave a finite area. Ba jiao gui and Bamboo ghosts cannot leave the area immediately surrounding their tree. Diao si gui cannot leave the area of their execution. Gui Po cannot leave the estate of the family under their protection, unless the family is traveling as well. Shui gui cannot leave the body of water they drowned in. Gū Hķn Yě Guǐ, Re Bin Gui Bin, Wutou gui and Yuan gui are forced to wander the mortal realm until they find some means of attaining the afterlife. Those who are forced to wander cannot leave the mortal realm, not even the Yen-lo-hwang can compel them. Those bound to a specific site cannot move more than 60 ft from it.

Compulsion Vulnerability: The Gui has an odd compulsion. For many Gui the most common Compulsion is that they are always required to move in a straight line, and they cannot disobey this compulsion, even while magically controlled. For the Er Gui, or Hungry Ghosts, the most common is hunger. They will eat anything, even corpses and feces, and never get enough to satisfy their hunger, no matter how much they eat. So long as there is food available they will pursue it to the exclusion of all else.

Red String Vulnerability: This may only be taken by Gui who also have the Bound Vulnerability. If someone ties red thread about the location the Gui is bound to (usually the tree they haunt, or were hung from) before pinning the thread down with needles and tying the other end to their bedpost they may temporarily enslave the Gui. They may ask of the Gui any one task it can conceivably carry out (usually it's for winning lottery numbers). If the ghost does so successfully within 30 days you must let it free, otherwise you permanently lose the ability to make Saving Throws against it's Special Attacks.

Slave Vulnerability: The Gui is a slave to another being. For the Ch'ang kuei this is the tiger responsible for killing and eating them, and only lasts until they assist the tiger in killing another man. For many others their master is the Yen-lo-Hwang. They are sent by the afterlife to punish the wicked in exchange for the possibility of reduced sentence (though one could argue their being allowed out is itself a reduced sentence), or a chance at one day becoming one of the Yen-lo-hwang themselves. They are freed at the appointed time granted them by Yama. In much rarer instances a Gui can be the slave of a Taoist priest, who keeps them as a servant or weapon. This technically lasts until the priest frees them, which he will never willingly do as the ghost will seek revenge. So having a ghostly servant is a double edged sword, especially since ghosts haunting someone on behalf of the living is a violation of afterlife law. Buddhist exorcists sometimes make use of the Gui as aides, as do the Taoist Immortals, but such a thing is very rare.

Alternative Movement Mode: The Gui gains either a Flight or Swim speed equal to it's Land speed (Maneuverability is Perfect in the case of Flight).

Damage Reduction: The Gui has Damage Reduction 10/Magic.

Enhanced Ability Score: Increase any one Ability Score by +4.

I Return What I Have Stolen (Su): The Gui may cast True Resurrection at will as a Supernatural Ability, but only to return the soul of someone whose life it has taken within the last day, and only a life it has taken via one of it's Special Attacks listed above.

Reward (Su): Feeding or otherwise aiding ghosts during the Hungry Ghost Festival brings good luck, and anyone doing so gains an automatic 20 on their next 'significant' d20 roll. Significant rolls include Checks meant to stabilize when in negative hp, Saving Throws (especially against Death effects), profession checks meant to gain money or contracts, etc. In other words life altering. Mortals can accumulate several such rolls by aiding ghosts (the ghosts decide if he gets the reward or not, and while some only give it for mortals who go out of their way, ghosts who are on hard times are a bit less stingy).

Spell Resistance (Ex): The Gui gains Spell Resistance equal to 10 plus half its hit Dice plus its Charisma modifier.

Turn Resistance (Ex): A Gui gains +4 Turn Resistance.

Unholy Grace (Su): The Gui adds a Profane Bonus to her AC and Saving Throws equal to her Charisma modifier.

Unnatural Vitality (Ex): The Gui gains Maximum hit points per hit die.

Saves: Unchanged (but see Special Qualities).

Abilities: Unchanged, but as an Undead Con is now -. Powers, Attacks or Abilities that normally used it's Constitution Modifier now use it's Charisma Modifier instead.

Skills: Gui have a +8 racial bonus on Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Search, and Spot checks.

Feats: Unchanged.

Environment: Unchanged (though some may have certain restrictions)

Organization: Usually Solitary

Challenge Rating: Varies depending on the Base Creatures Hit Dice: 1-4 (+1), plus an additional +1 for each 4 Hit Dice past the fourth (i.e. +4 at 5-8 HD, etc). If it has access to spellcasting, minimum CR is equal to Hit Dice plus one for each four Hit Dice.

Treasure: Varies a great deal, but usually none

Alignment: Gui Alignment varies considerably, with many being Neutral, Chaotic Neutral, Neutral Evil or Chaotic Evil. Other Alignments are possible, just usually considerably rare.

Advancement: Unchanged.

Level Adjustment: N/A, Gui are not meant to be PC's.

Examples of Different Ghost Types:

Ba jiao gui: Known far more throughout Southeast Asia than China proper, the Ba Jiao Gui are the ghosts of women who lives in banana
trees. At night they appear at the base of the tree wailing, sometimes with an infant. Supposedly blessed with minor powers of prophecy, it is said that if you tie a red string to the tree before driving needles into it, and then tie the other end to your bedpost, this traps the ghost or causes them great pain. They will then appear at your bed that evening and promise you winning lottery numbers in exchange for being freed once you win. If you don't set them free, you die a horrible death. Ba jiao gui have the Bad Omen, Curse of Revenge, Divination, and Red String Vulnerability abilities. This also refers to the ghosts of gamblers who died as a consequence of an inability to pay (even if by suicide).

Bamboo Ghost: A crossover from Malaysia and Taiwan, this is the spirit of someone who has committed suicide in the bamboo groves. They seek to kill another to take their place so they can move on to the afterlife, and can animate stalks of Bamboo to kill their victims. They have the Animate Bamboo, Deceit, Invisibility, and Bound Vulnerability abilities.

Ch'ang kuei: The ghosts of men killed by tigers, who must remain as their whimpering servants in the afterlife (or at least until the tiger kills it's next victim). Invisible spirits, they strip victims so the tiger can proceed to eating them without delay, and guard the tiger while it sleeps. They have the Invisibility and Slave Vulnerability abilities.

Di fu ling: Di fu ling is a generic term for a ghost bound to it's burial site, or some other place it had a strong attachment to in life. Di fu ling have the Bound Vulnerability.

Diao si gui: Diao si gui are the ghosts of those who have been executed or committed suicide via hanging. They cannot leave this world (or the site of their hanging) until they "convince" someone to take their place (i.e. execute them by hanging or drive them to suicide). They will try using illusion to convince him, or bind him with the rope they were hanged with This rope will grow into the victim causing them great pain and hampering their movement, and can only be removed via dangerous surgery or by killing oneself. Diao si gui have the Parasitic Rope, Deceit, and Bound Vulnerability abilities. Usually pictures with long red tongues hanging from their mouths.

E gui: The Chinese name for the Buddhist Preta, or Hungry Ghost Every year during the Ghost Festival they are free to roam (though some escape Hell at other times) and ask for food. They are the ghosts of truly awful, greedy people, and if approached by one for food, you will be cursed if you refuse. People who offend or strike them may also find illness, madness or misfortune. Hungry ghosts who were destitute in life can eat but a little food, and suffer from anorexia. Those with some wealth are divided into three groups: those whose food is burned to ash by the fires in their mouths, those whose throats are needle thin and will not allow food to pass, and those whose mouths are too rotten to eat anything. Those with great wealth become the ghost of sacrifices, who live off human sacrifices given to them by the living. Other become the ghosts of losses, who live off lost objects from the human world, and the ghosts of great powers, who are rulers of the ghosts and semi-dine in power. The common portrayal of them is a grey or green skinned man who is invisible by day, but an night can be seen to have a small mouth, pot belly, and needle thin throat. Some are capable of possession. People who refuse to give others food or aid, or who do not get the proper funerary rites yearly can become hungry ghosts as well. All of them have the Invisibility and Compulsion Vulnerability abilities. Most also have one of the following: Deceit, Possessor, Plague Spreader, or Bad Omen.

Gū Hķn Yě Guǐ (aka You hun ye gui): These are the ghosts of those who died with no one to give them the proper funerary rites, whether because they were far from home or because their family didn't care. They wonder until someone performs the proper rites for them to move on to the Underworld. Some of them are merely mischievous, others are rampaging monsters. Some settle down and become minor Gods, worshiped in order to placate them so they will provide protection. They are referred to as You Ying Gong (Wang Ye in Taiwan), and best represented via another template. Those who do not settle down to become Gods usually have the Mischief and Bound Vulnerability abilities. The Mischief ability is usually used to draw attention to evidence that will clear their name.

Gui po: Gui Po are the Ghosts of elderly domestic servants who have returned to look out for and watch over the family they served in life. They have the Protective Spirit and Bound Vulnerability abilities.

Gui Zhai (aka Toyol) Ghui Zhai is the Chinese name for the Toyol, which is best represented by it's own template.

NŁ gui/Nan gui: Women who have been horribly wronged (sexual abuse is strongly implied) can find a measure of revenge by committing suicide in a red dress They return as pale, long-haired women in white dresses seeking revenge on those who wronged them. Nan Gui is the male version of the Nu Gui. Note that they can be rather indiscriminate in their revenge, and in addition to their abuser they can take "revenge" on just about everything in their path. There is a subset of the Nu Gui sometimes called Yao Nien, who are ghostly succubi who drain men of their Yang energy during lovemaking, or who murder them for their blood. These have the Deceit and Drain abilities. Some few of them take men as husbands instead, and even bear them children,

Re Bin Gui Bin: Ghosts of foreign soldiers (usually Japanese) who roam the land murdering people. Technically they didn't come about till WWII, but there were wars with China before then. They usually have some ability to cause fear or otherwise impose morale penalties.

Shu gui: Shu gui are haunted trees which confuse travelers by reappearing at random in the forest, causing them to be lost. They are also known for sowing terror. They usually have the Deceit, Invisibility, and Horrifying Appearance abilities.

Shui gui: Shui gui are the ghosts of the drowned, cursed to haunt the body of water that killed them until they get a replacement. They do this by pulling travelers into the water, and then possessing their body, while leaving the bodies soul behind to become a new Shui gui. They have the Tien Sho and Bound Vulnerability abilities.

Thou-tzu Kuei: The ghosts of women who died without child, who try to steal infants. They can be repelled by fetish swords hung from the babies cots.

Wutou gui: Wutou gui are the wandering ghosts of those executed via beheading. Some carry their own head, some have no head at all. They have the Bound Vulnerability.

Yen-lo-hwang: Ghostly constables and magistrates who act as the law of the afterlife. They punish the living who harm or enslave ghosts, enforce the laws of the afterlife on the deceased, and are sent to return escaped Ghosts or Demons. They are best represented by a separate template.

Yuan gui: Yuan gui are the ghosts of those who died wronged, or had their reputations smeared. Denied reincarnation they are doomed to wonder the world until they can get someone to clear their name or avenge them. They have the Bound Vulnerability.

Ying ling: The ghosts of dead fetuses, inspired by similar tales of Japanese ghosts.

Zhong yin shen: Generic term for the recently deceased who have yet to move on to the afterlife and reincarnation, who wander the Earth for 49 days.

Chinese Afterlife: When mortals die they wander the mortal realm for an additional 49 days, being watched over by the infernal bureaucracy. After this they are rounded up and presented to a Judge (some say it's Yama or one of the other Kings of the Underworld, some say it's the God Cheng Huang). If the person has been particularly vile during life they are sentenced to Diyu, Chinese Hell. Once there Lord Yama decides what their punishment will be, and for how long. Mortals who have been indescribably foul become demons, and thus become permanent residents of Diyu. Mortals who haven't been bad enough for Diyu, or who have been there for some time then go to the Underworld of the Yellow Springs (or in the case of Buddhists the Realm of the Hungry Ghosts). This is a cheerless afterlife in which they live a miserable existence, save for during the yearly Hungry Ghost Festival when their relatives burn 'hell money' and other paper items that become real in the afterlife. Once their time there is over, another God gives them a potion that removes their memories so they can be reincarnated. People who were sinners become animals, those who were average become human again, and those who were good (but not yet enough to achieve Enlightenment) become humans with long life spans. Particularly good men may spend time in Heaven (which is generally reserved for the Gods), or a lower heaven inhabited by the Taoist Immortals.