Faux Faerie

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Frequency:Very rare
Activity Cycle:Day
Intelligence:Average (8-10)
Alignment:Chaotic neutral
No. Appearing:1
Armor Class:4
Hit Dice:4
No. of Attacks:1
Damage/Attack:See below
Special Attacks:See below
Special Defenses:See below
Magic Resistance:100% (see below)
Size:T (1-2' tall)
Morale:Steady (12)
XP Value:2,000

The faux faerie has a mission and goal to its life: to misdirect and lie to as many creatures as possible. It is quite happy in its life's work, and delights in finding new and novel ways to lie and mislead others. It has almost no powers of its own, but its special form of magic resistance makes it seem as if it has great magical power.

Because it is essentially a magic-based creature, the faux faerie can appear to those who view it as one of almost any number of fairy like creature, such as sprites, brownies, pixies, leprechauns, or woodland fairies. It will generally take the form of whichever type of fairy-creature is most common to the locale in which it is currently travelling. The faux faerie is an excellent mimic, conversant in all of the languages of the creatures it portrays, and is virtually impossible to detect as an imposter, except that it does not possess the innate magical powers and natural abilities of the creatures it poses as. Thus, for example, it can appear and sound like a leprechaun, but cannot play the magical tricks that come so easily to such creatures.

The faux faerie spends its day changing trail markers and sign posts, creating false and circling trails, and giving inaccurate directions and information to passersby. It will even create trails to areas in which such natural dangers as quicksand, rockslides, and dangerous pits abound. It is a congenital liar, but crafty in mixing lies, half-truths, and partial truths, so as to misdirect and confuse without its lies being noticeable or obvious. Once having led someone astray, the faux faerie will often follow behind them at a distance to laugh at their plight, sometimes changing form to encounter them yet again.

Combat: The lies and deceit of the faux faerie are one of its most potent weapons, and more than one adventuring party has been misdirected to its death by these pernicious little creatures. But the most unusual feature of combat with these strange creatures is their complete and special magic resistance, which gives them total protection from all forms of magical spell attack. An invisible aura of absorbent and reactive magic surrounds them so that when a spell is cast upon them, the spell is itself absorbed into their aura, where it joins dozens of other spells, circling the faux faerie in a magical frenzy. If the aura is “full” at the time a spell is cast upon the faux faerie, the spell is still absorbed, but a random spell captured earlier is expelled from the aura back toward the caster of the spell upon the faux faerie. This can happen multiple times in the same round and cannot be disrupted by any physical attack. Thus, without components or motions of casting, a faux faerie may appear to have great innate magical abilities, as it will cast out in any round the same number of spells which may be cast upon it that round, without suffering spell disruption by any means.

If a faux faerie is burnt in its dormant state (see Habitat/Society below), the results can be disastrous, as the aura is disrupted and all of the stored spells are released at the rate of six per round until the aura is fully emptied or the burning of the faux faerie is put out.

The number of spells which can be held by the aura of a faux faerie ranges from 24 to 48, and does not change over the life of the faux faerie. Until the aura fills, spells are merely captured by it, and no spells are expelled in return. Once full, the aura captures and randomly expels spells on a one-for-one basis. The spells absorbed and expelled may be either magical or clerical in nature and are not limited by school or discipline. The spells which a faux faerie has stored in its aura would normally include a variety of spells which might have been cast upon it (by both friendly and unfriendly parties), including such spells as know alignment, charm, magic missile, lightning bolt, etc.

Habitat/Society: During daylight hours, the faux faerie goes about its novel business, snacking on berries and nuts. An hour before dusk, the faux faerie will seek out a suitable fallen branch or log, three or four feet long at most, into which it melds itself for its night's rest, and becomes a part of the wood itself - much as a dryad will meld into her host tree for rest and replenishment. The faux faerie remains in the wood until an hour after dawn. When infused with a faux faerie, the wood of the branch or log will take on an extremely faint blue glow from the dweomer of the magical aura of the faux faerie. This glow, which is indistinguishable from the blue fox fire glow which sometimes occurs in naturally decomposing wood, cannot be seen at all if it is still light or dusk or if there is a light source (e.g., torch, lamp, lantern, or continual light gem) in use when the wood is viewed. Thus, gathering wood for a fire at dusk can be a risky proposition if a faux faerie is about. If the wood infused with a dormant faux faerie is burnt, the faux faerie will take normal damage from the fire, and its aura is explosively disrupted as described above.

If, however, the wood containing the faux faerie is chopped or cut (and not burnt), only six random spells will be discharged. Two faux faeries will emerge from the pieces of wood that morning, each with half the hit points and half the stored spells of the original faux faerie. They will remain in this immature stage for two weeks, after which their hit points and spell capacities will double. This is the only known means of procreation for the faux faerie.

Ecology: A faux faerie can be a formidable storage battery for high-level protective and healing spells, or even for offensive spells. If captured before its aura is full, the faux faerie can be “fed” whichever spells are desired. For example, a cleric could cast several high-level cures on the faux faerie until its aura was filled or nearly filled with such spells. This would allow any spellcaster to receive such a cure during battle by casting a low level spell on the creature, receiving the expelled spell in return. Obviously. there are many risks involved. First, the hazards of trying to determine whether or not a faux faerie's aura is “full” should be obvious, as well as the effort involved in capturing the creature. Second, as low-level spells are cast upon it to discharge the stored spells, the odds increase that one will not receive the hoped-for spell in return. And finally, faux faeries are not at all fond of being treated like storage batteries, and will do their utmost to escape from any such situation.