February 18, 2013 by deadorcs
Here are some more thoughts regarding my future DnDNext campaign. These thoughts basically create a new monster, explains the origins of aberrant creatures, and is a major social-ecological event. Enjoy!
The Burst is a cosmological event that takes place every ten years or so when the True Light (Honua’s star), gives off a burst of energy which envelopes both Honua and Kag’Lhey. This energy carries aberrant spores from Kag’Lhey towards Honua. When these spores land, they hatch into small worm-like creatures with voracious appetites. Eating all organic material around them, they eventually turn into a random aberrant creature.
Although dangerous (due to their voracity) in larval form, they can be killed with most weapons, and are particularly vulnerable to fire. However, once they mature, the aberrant creature that emerges can take many deadly forms. It is widely believed by most sages that horrible creatures such as Aboleths, Illithids, and Beholders originate in this fashion.
Spores that land in the ocean (which is most of the surface area of Honua), are typically eaten by sea creatures and pose little threat (although some do escape this fate and end up as Aboleths or other aquatic varieties of aberrant creatures). Spores that land on solid ground immediate grow into a distended tubular creature known as a Gorge Worm. Only a centimeter long when they first hatch, Gorge Worms eat any organic substance in front of them, growing at a tremendous rate.
After 24 hours, the skin of the Gorge Worm splits open and a Carrion Crawler emerges. These creatures are also voracious, but because they do not care for the True Light, they seek hidden places underground. From this point, the fate of the Carrion Crawler can change depending on a number of factors.
Many of the Carrion Crawlers remain in this form, especially if they are unable to consume a meal within the next 24 hours. However, if the Carrion Crawler is lucky, and consumes a living meal within 24 hours of taking that form, then a terrible transformation takes place. After eating, the Carrion Crawler finds a secluded place, curls into a ball, and secretes a gelatinous shell that hardens into a pupae. The pupae is vulnerable, (it cannot attack or defend itself during its transformation) but well hidden, so they are difficult to find and destroy.
The transformation process takes place over the period of a week. After that time, the hardened shell splits, and a horrible aberrant creature emerges. Wizards, sages, and other scholarly sources are still do not understand just exactly what determines the final form that emerges from the pupae. Some are sure it has to do with the last meal the Carrion Crawler ingests. Others believe that nearby magical or psionic energy sources might be a factor in the final form the creature takes.
Because this dangerous phenomenon has been going on for centuries, civilizations all over Honua gear up every ten years to oppose this threat to life. Special precautions are taken, and local astrologers carefully watch the skies for signs of The Burst or The Rain. Surviving a Rain of Kag’Lhey is an honor, as well as a fact of life on Honua. It’s common for someone to refer to their age by how many Rains they’ve survived. Someone in their thirties, for example, might say, “I’ve passed Three Rains.
Despite wild tales to the contrary, there seems to be no connection between the Shadow Rail and the Rain of Kag’Lhey.
Until next time…
Game excellently with one another.