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    Aug 2009

    Default Re: 30+ New Dragons (more true dragons than the draconomicon)

    Soulshell Dragon
    Environment: Temperate Swamps.
    Organization: Wyrmling, very young, young, juvenile, and young adult: solitary, or clutch (2–5); adult, mature adult, old, very old, ancient, wyrm, or great wyrm: solitary, pair, or family (2-5).
    Challenge Ratings: Wyrmling 3; very young 4; young 5; juvenile 8; young adult 11; adult 13; mature adult 16; old 18; very old 19; ancient 21; wyrm 22; great wyrm 24
    Treasure: Wyrmling, very young, young, juvenile, and young adult: Standard; adult, mature adult, old, very old, ancient, wyrm, or great wyrm: Triple Standard
    Alignment: Always Chaotic Evil.

    Having heard that these dragons were the original source of the art of pact magic, like their more prevalent kin are believed to be the source of arcane magic, I of course could not resist the urge to investigate. I travelled to the distant, fetid bogs that these dragons dwell upon, on the fifth planet of the Urstspace. I was sidetracked for a time with a quest in the service of Queen Eliza of Talorn, and the confirmation of old flow sailors’ tales of star dragons which fly through the Rainbow Sea*. That, though, is a story for another scroll, this one being instead dedicated to soulshell dragons.

    I found them in the dreadful swamps of Hast, the wyrms moving slowly through the bog as absolute lords over the aboriginal lizardfolk. I began to converse with one of these dragons, after a simple display of my strength (it had no right to mind being put into a forcecage that much). After several weeks of studying this great wyrm, I moved on to study others of its kin. My discoveries during this time were impressive and amazing.

    First let me summarily dismiss the idea that soulshell dragons are the progenitors of pact magic. My research has instead led me to believe that they more than any other group of creatures have set back that field. My research has led me to discover that soulshell dragons were once mundane black dragons that tampered with pact magic. Due to the contagious nature of magic, and the notable susceptibility that unborn dragons have to magical mutations, their children were born vessels for the vestiges they had once bound. These dragons were such perfect vessels that the vestiges within their capability to bind soon became addicted to this greater sense of liberty and freedom, this fuller experience than humanoid binders can ever hope to give them. Within a generation novice binders could no longer learn the art of pact magic due to the weaker vestiges seeking only to bind with these perfect vessels. It was then that the vestiges learned their mistake, for the soulshell dragons upon reaching maturity turned from perfect vessel to ruthless tyrant with absolute control of the pact able to force a vestige to bind willing or not. Bound to a wyrmling the vestige has an absolute sense of life, so intoxicating they rarely desire other bonds; bound to an adult they have no sensation except that of being absolutely and entirely controlled by another.

    This led to the collapse of the binding arts across countless crystal spheres, many of which have never recovered the secrets required. Some of which never will. The vestiges themselves learned that to trust soulshell dragons as their only source of involvement in life was a surety of disaster and have never again made such a folly, although no vestige may resist the call of a soulshell dragon.

    As to the dragons themselves the young are merely lenses for the vestiges they call. They taint the vestige’s world towards chaos and evil, towards wanton greed and cruelty but they also serve as the most direct conduits in my knowledge for vestiges to experience the world and as such are beloved by vestiges. They have little will of their own, a soulshell dragon who has bound Karsus will become absorbed with arrogance and the pursuit of arcane knowledge, while if the same dragon bound Leraje they would have the humility of one whose hubris has been punished and a great deference towards elves. They think no thought completely their own and are as much an implement of the vestige’s will as their own agency, the only exception is during the time when they have no vestige bound due to the end of the pact a time that these dragons fear and hate.

    When they reach full adulthood, though, the balance in this relationship changes drastically; the dragon goes from servant to absolute dictator and the vestige from superior to lowliest slave. At this point the dragon begins to develop its own powerful personality, influenced by those vestiges it bound regularly while younger and those vestiges it first binds upon reaching adulthood. The bound vestiges, though, have no power or influence on the actions of these full grown soulshell dragons, though, and do not get to experience even the shadow of this life they so long for instead acting purely to empower the dragon controlling them. These full grown soulshell dragons are avaricious, vicious, and their lust for power knows no or nearly no bounds.

    -Zasper, Grand Archmage of the 9th Circle, Bearer of the Crystal Crown, Friend to Bahamut, Foe to Tiamat, Hero of a Hundred Kingdoms, Keeper of the 89th Secret of Talorn, Walker of Worlds, the Purple Archmage, and Champion of Halm.

    *: As a special note star dragons do make excellent tea and cakes.

    As Zasper left without describing their physical nature, I shall now do so. Soulshell dragons have scales of a dull, non-reflective black showing only few signs of change as they age. They have four horns upon their heads, two stretching from each side and each pair connected by an ornamental frill. Soulshell dragons have yellow eyes, although only when a vestige is not bound which is a rare enough occurrence, and pure black eyes when a vestige is bound (unless dictated otherwise by it sign). They have six claws on each foot.

    Age Size Hit Dice Str Dex Con Int Wis Cha BAB/Grp Atk Fort Ref Will Breath Weapon Damage Breath Weapon DC Frightful Presence
    Wyrmling S 5d12+5 (37 hp) 13 10 13 8 9 14 5/2 7 5 4 3 1d8 13 -
    Very Young M 8d12+16 (66 hp) 15 10 15 10 11 16 8/10 10 8 6 6 2d8 16 -
    Young M 11d12+22 (93 hp) 17 10 15 10 11 16 11/14 14 9 7 7 3d8 17 -
    Juvenile L 14d12+42 (133 hp) 21 10 17 12 11 18 14/23 18 12 9 9 4d8 20 -
    Young Adult L 17d12+68 (178 hp) 23 10 19 12 13 18 17/27 22 14 10 11 5d8 22 22
    Adult H 20d12+80 (210 hp) 25 10 19 14 13 20 20/35 25 16 12 13 6d8 24 24
    Mature Adult H 23d12+115 (264 hp) 27 10 21 16 15 20 23/39 29 18 13 15 7d8 26 26
    Old H 26d12+130 (299 hp) 29 10 21 16 15 22 26/43 33 20 15 17 8d8 28 29
    Very Old H 29d12+174 (362 hp) 31 10 23 18 17 22 29/47 37 22 16 19 9d8 30 30
    Ancient G 32d12+224 (432 hp) 35 10 25 18 17 24 32/56 40 25 18 21 10d8 33 33
    Wyrm G 35d12+281 (508 hp) 37 10 27 20 19 24 35/60 44 27 19 23 11d8 35 34
    Great Wyrm G 38d12+305 (552 hp) 39 10 27 22 21 26 38/64 48 29 21 26 12d8 37 37

    Age Speed Init AC SR Special Abilities Effective Binder Level
    Wyrmling 40-ft, fly 100-ft (average), swim 40-ft +0 14 (+1 size, +3 natural) - Immune to Fear, Empty Vessel, Soul Binding, Detect Vestige, Water Breathing 1st
    Very Young 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor), swim 40-ft +0 16 (+6 natural) - Bound One's Whispers 3rd
    Young 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 19 (+9 natural) - Hasten Vestige 4th
    Juvenile 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 21 (-1 size, +12 natural) - Slippery Mind 6th
    Young Adult 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 24 (-1 size, +15 natural) 19 DR 5/magic 7th
    Adult 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 26 (-2 size, +18 natural) 21 Dominate Vestige, Quicken Vestige Ability 9th
    Mature Adult 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 29 (-2 size, +21 natural) 22 Immune to Negative Levels and Energy Drain, DR 10/magic 10th
    Old 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 32 (-2 size, +24 natural) 24 Rapid Vestige 12th
    Very Old 40-ft, fly 150-ft (poor) +0 35 (-2 size, +27 natural) 25 DR 15/magic 13th
    Ancient 40-ft, fly 200-ft (clumsy), swim 40-ft +0 36 (-4 size, +30 natural) 27 Immunity to Mind-Affecting Spells and effect 15th
    Wyrm 40-ft, fly 200-ft (clumsy) +0 39 (-4 size, +33 natural) 28 Dr 20/magic 16th
    Great Wyrm 40-ft, fly 200-ft (clumsy) +0 42 (-4 size, +36 natural) 30 Soul Binding (two vestiges) 18th

    Special Abilities

    Breath Weapon (Su): A soulshell dragon has two breath weapons. The first is a line of spiritual energy which deals the listed (untyped) damage, with a Fort save for half. The second is a cone of soul shriveling gas which deals 1 point of Wisdom damage per two age categories (Will halves).

    Empty Vessel (Su): A soulshell dragon automatically fails all binding checks.

    Soul Binding: A soulshell dragon may bind vestiges as a binder of the level listed on the table above. No matter what effective level they have from this effect they may only bind one vestige at a time. A great wyrm soulshell dragon and may bind two vestiges simultaneously.

    Detect Vestige (Sp): A soulshell dragon may use Detect Vestige as a spell-like ability at-will (CL = Binder Level).

    Bound One’s Whispers (Su): A very young soulshell dragon gains an insight bonus to attacks, saving throws, or AC equal to one-half its age category whenever it has a vestige bound. Whenever it binds a vestige it may choose to change which to apply this insight bonus to.

    Hasten Vestige (Su): A young or older soulshell dragon needs only to wait 1d4 rounds to use ability granted by a bound vestige that normally require 5 rounds to recharge.

    Slippery Mind (Su): A juvenile older soulshell dragon may slip its mind free of effects that would compel or control it. If it fails a saving throw against an enchantment spell or effect it may attempt to make the save again 1 round later at the same DC. A soulshell dragon only gets this one extra chance to succeed on a saving throw.

    Dominate Vestige (Su): An adult or older soulshell dragon loses the Empty Vessel ability and gains this one in its stead. They no longer need to make Binding checks, instead automatically succeeding, and gain Expel Vestige and Rapid Pact Making as bonus feats; they may use these feats one extra time per day per 2 age categories. Adult or older soulshell dragons may also suppress any signs they choose from their bound vestige.

    Quicken Vestige Ability (Ex): 3 times per day an adult or older soulshell dragon may use an ability of its bound vestige which would normally take a standard action as a swift action.

    Rapid Vestige (Su) An old or older soulshell dragon may use any ability of their vestige which normally requires a 5 round wait once per round.

    Skills: Bluff and Spellcraft are class skills for soulshell dragons.
    Last edited by Zaydos; 2014-08-27 at 02:37 PM.
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