Fancy Familiars and Suspicious Summons

Somewhere out there, there is a book. This book was written in the most secret of woods, on the night of a blue moon, in the inscriber’s own blood as they prostrated themselves before the almighty darkness. That, or it was written by a bunch of old ladies high on tea brewed from the secretions of the finest swamp toad. It is debatable.

Regardless of where the book came from it contained within it several hundred pages of utter gibberish. This ranged from the proper drawing of summoning circles, when using the crushed bone marrow of eerie twins , right up to a delightful recipe for cakes to be fed to dogs, mixed with urine, in order to locate ones grotesque friends hiding within an unfortunately religious village.

Among the rubbish are several spells. If a Magic User is dedicated enough to wade through the diary entries on behalf of a young, lovesick virgin who has decided to run away with the neighbors prized goat, they will be rewarded (sort of).

If an adventurer gains one of these spells they must make a Save vs. Magic upon casting to dominate the creature. Familiars will not attack the player, they simply will not listen to them. Summons on the other hand will immediately attack upon a failure. Alternatively, if your party are a bunch of goody two shoes they might encounter a witch with the below summon or familiars and they might wish to kill them.

If someone summons these, depending on where they are, they may end up being hunted, imprisoned or dragged to be burned at the stake. The caster will take a  permanent -1D4 to their charisma upon casting.

Summon: The Dread Cherub

Ingredients: The corpse of an infant, blood and chalk.
Ritual: A summoning circle is drawn and the magic user placed the babe inside. They then call forth to the spirits, write their unholy name in blood upon the infants body and summon a demon into the body. This ritual must be performed at night.
Duration: The Dread Cherub exists for 1D6 days before decaying.

 

cherub

The dread cherub is one of the more unsettling and common demonic creatures a witch has at their disposal. The dread cherub is an imp who has not yet earned the right in the underworld to be born. Instead, they are the fetus of a demon who infests the corpse of a recently dead infant in order to prove their worthiness. The infant host can range from newborn to the age of a toddler. They  decay and the imp has until its host body perishes to prove themselves. The demon is capable of breaking the ribs of its possessed body. These bones protrude out through its back to form buzzing wings allowing it to hover. They are a weak familiar, incapable of speech and crave only to do harm until they are released from the witches service.

“To this day I cannot scrape the image from my mind. It was a babe, barely past its first year. It’s young and childish visage marred by the heavy glow of warped magics. Its head was swollen and its skin pasty, wet with what I assumed was sweat. It was wasn’t until I looked closer did I realized the grotesque and deformed body of the infant, that moved over the witch’s shoulders with the horrifying dexterity of some well-balanced feline, was wet from its own gradual decay. The stench from its withering, under-developed body over powered me and I wretched into my coat sleeve. The little creatures innocent mouth opened and gums came protruding out from the black chasm, pink and shining with a thick white saliva. From the bleeding gums erupted small, needle like fangs that curved inward and I could imagine that that little face, once loved by a mother, was now only capable of ripping into flesh.”  – The Diary of Witch-Hunter Lloyd Newman, found to have be eaten alive at his own dinner party.

Dread cherubs are really only useful to fetch a witches belongings, provide them with something to kick when the pot boils over and to toss in the direction of enemies as cannon fodder.

HP 6 AC10 DMG 1D4
A Mother’s Love (Spell): The cherub can once per day cast “A Mother’s Love” on an adventurer. The affected must make a Save vs. Magic or they will for 1D8 rounds believe that the cherub is their own offspring. They will see a family resemblance and they will not see the wings, decay or fangs. They will believe the cherub is their own defenseless child.

Familiar: Sass Cat

Ingredients: A cat. Chalk.
Ritual: To create a cat familiar, all one has to do is unlock its inner megalomaniac. Every cat has one. A simple chanting exercise with the feline  of choice, within a summoning circle, will do the trick.
Duration: Until killed or dismissed.

The Cat is an easy familiar to summon and quite useful for those wishing to expand their knowledge. It is an intelligent being with the benefit of occult knowledge. The cat helps to bolster any magical spells or rituals. They do not enhance damage, unfortunately, and if you do not ask permission to throw the cat at someone as a weapon it is likely you will lose your familiar all together. This is a mutually beneficial relationship after all. All the cat asks for in return for its magical boosting abilities is love, comfort, food and the prospect of world domination. The cat has its own agendas. It desires power above all things, and would very much like to be responsible for control of not only the world but the dark realms that exist beyond that. The cat wants all knowledge and all power and you are its tool to do so. It cares if you are injured, it is not beneficial to have a broken tool.

The cat can speak and it will often give its opinion on events or actions. The cat knows a great deal about the occult and demons.  The cat is witty , sarcastic and loves to point out the hypocrisy in humans. It is not very good at keeping its mouth shut and may land the party in some sticky situations with its sass.

HP 8 AC 14 DMG 1D4 Claws
Magic Boost: Gives a +1 to all magic saves or rolls to cast spells.
Occult Knowledge: The cat can give advise and observations on anything of an occult or demonic nature.
See what I see: You can once per day see through the eyes of your cat. They are able to see cloaked or invisible enemies and they are able to see in total darkness. This lasts until the player wishes to carry out another action. The cat cannot move whilst being seen through.

Familiar: The Goat

Ritual Ingredients: Self loathing and suppressed inner hedonism.
Ritual: Don’t worry. The goat will find you.
Duration: Until killed or dismissed.

The Goat is not a goat. It looks like a goat. It “Bah’s” like a goat. But, it is most definitely not a goat.

This goat is quite possibly one of the 72 demons. It is quite possibly the devil himself. It could be an ancient leviathan lingering on the outer realms desperate to consume any and all in unnatural ways. Whatever it is, the goat is its vessel, its mouth piece. It doesn’t reveal this to anyone but the magic user who attracted its attention. It will simply “bah” at other party members and appear as a normal goat. It will communicate telepathically with the magic user, encouraging dark and dastardly plans. The goat craves human flesh and is very happy to dispose of any bodies your adventurers inevitably leave behind them as long as no one but its owner sees.  If it is caught in the act, it will return to pretending to be a normal goat. The goat will, if directly accused, respond with “No, I’m a goat.” thus revealing itself not to be a goat.

In combat, it has incredible ramming capability. It will assist the magic user in rituals and spells. If any ingredients are needed for spells, the goat has an uncanny knack for locating them even in a place where the ingredients are rare. The goat halves the casting time of all magic spells and rituals. The goat does require you to commit dark sexual acts and blood magic in order to keep it around.

You must perform a Save vs. Magic when the goat arrives for it to become your familiar. If you do not, it will attempt to drag your soul to hell.

HP 8 AC 12 DMG 1D6 Gore, 1d8 Ram (One use)
Whispers in the Dark: The goat allows the magic user to speak directly with it through telepathy. The adventurer can locate the goat wherever the goat may be.
Dark Intentions: The goat is the mouth piece of a powerful demon. Once per week, it may speak to the adventurer or a person of the adventurers choice and command them to do an action. The person it has commanded must then make a Save vs. Magic. If they fail, they must obey or else they suffer from damage until the action is complete.
The Enemy of My Friend is My Dinner:  If the adventurer is alone the goat will perform a one time only act to save its summoner. It will take on the form of a giant goat-headed monstrosity and kill the thing threatening the magic user, within reason (it might not be able to defeat an army, for example). This will only occur once in the familiars life and the Goat will choose when to do this. It will not perform this action if the adventurer is not alone with the offending NPC.

Summon:   Wandering Arachnid Sac

Ingredients: A pregnant woman or a recent father, a female spider and her egg sac, needle, thread, chalk and blood.
Ritual: The victim is placed in the centre of the summoning circle. The victim is covered in blood runes calling to the darker realms. The spider is then inserted into the ear of the living victim. The egg sac is sewn onto their belly.
Duration: Until death or 1D20 hours.

kat-feature

The wandering arachnid sac is a monstrosity that has no real purpose other than for combat. Some witches, however, do use the Wandering Arachnid Sac for ingredients and to craft unholy garments from cursed spiders silk.

“The coven we had sought were deeply embroiled in trade of silks and we thought perhaps their blood magics had brought forward mindless drones to spin it for them. We thought that was where they had taken my wife, to work their silks as a servant. How right we were and… how very wrong.

We came upon not one, two nor three of these creatures in the caverns.  Thirteen of them squatted in a ring within a great hole in the dark. They were illuminated by a shine from their webs. Their webs stretched up to the ceiling and sat beneath them as a comfortable floor. One of them was of a woman, her body bent backwards and her arms pressed to the webbed floor so she supported her weight with the palms of her hands. Her naked stomach and breasts were exposed to the sky, her stomach a distended bulbous expanse of flesh. Beneath the stretched skin you could see squirming within hundreds upon thousands of tiny shapes crawling over each other, pressing to free themselves from their fleshy sac. From this contorted woman’s torso and hips protruded great arachnid legs which were crafted from bone, veins and thick red muscle which quivered when they flexed. They were like scythes, sharp and deadly. Spiders crawled up and down them to clean away any loose flesh. Her legs were parted. Her genitals gaped open and within you could make out the spinners which spun great swathes of glowing silk, oozing out and worked by her body into fine and sturdy material. At the other end, from the mouth of this poor woman, her face contorted in horror and agony, belched spider upon spider of all different sizes which crawled over her body and upon the web beneath her. It was then that I saw the walls were undulating, covered in tiny eight-legged bodies that writhed and searched for food to bring back to their monster mothers.

We retreated, there was nothing we could do, and I in my growing madness realized that my wife would not be coming home with me.” – From the suicide note of Alexander Atkinson.

The arachnid sac produces a great deal of silk. It is sturdy and can be used the same as rope. It is easily burned. The silk can be crafted into magical clothing, however, it is cursed and has unexpected effects. The Arachnid sac has no memory of its previous life as a human being and will defend its offspring with its life. Its offspring, in turn, will defend it as its parents body is their home.

HP 35 AC 16 DMG 1D6 Spider Legs, Bone Scythes. Spells: Web, Spider Climb
Parenthood: The belly of the Arachnid sac splits apart and a shower of spiders erupts. Roll a D20. That is the number of large spiders that have erupted and each can make an attack on the player. They hit for 1D2 damage.

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