Archives of Nethys

Pathfinder 1E | Pathfinder 2E | Starfinder

All | Unique
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Families | Templates | Types | Subtypes | Universal Monster Rules


Mortic

Source Pathfinder #139: The Dead Road pg. 86
Mortics are humanoids afflicted with the physiology and appetites of undead. All mortics are pulled between two worlds: as living humanoids, they crave community and friendship, but their necromantic nature forces them to indulge in inhuman hungers and commit violence against the living. As a result, most mortics lurk at the edge of civilization or isolate themselves with others of their own kind. Although living creatures, mortics can suspend their living processes temporarily, becoming more like undead.

Creatures in "Mortic" Category

NameCR
Angheuvore2
Etioling10
Gurgist6
Jitterbone4
Lifeleecher8
Relictner12

Mortic, Relictner

This withered, decrepit dwarf has crumbling skin and wears ancient leather armor but moves with eerie agility.

Relictner CR 12

Source Pathfinder #143: Borne by the Sun's Grace pg. 86
XP 19,200
LE Medium humanoid (dwarf, mortic)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., ruin sense; Perception +23
Aura weathering aura (60 ft.)

Defense

AC 26, touch 13, flat-footed 23 (+3 armor, +2 Dex, +1 dodge +10 natural); +10 vs. environmental effects and traps within bonded ruin
hp 162 (17d8+85)
Fort +14, Ref +9, Will +10; +10 vs. environmental effects and traps within bonded ruin
Defensive Abilities death gasp, negative energy affinity; DR 5/-; Immune curses
Weaknesses vulnerable to consecration

Offense

Speed 20 ft.
Melee adamantine warhammer +16/+11/+6 (1d8+6/×3)
Special Attacks fatal accident (1/day, 12d6 or 6d6 plus maneuver, DC 21 half)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 17th; concentration +20))
At will—meld into stone
3/day—spike stones (DC 17), stone shape
1/day—wall of stone

Statistics

Str 19, Dex 14, Con 19, Int 15, Wis 16, Cha 17
Base Atk +12; CMB +16 (+20 bull rush, +20 sunder); CMD 29 (31 vs. bull rush, 31 vs. sunder)
Feats Dodge, Greater Bull Rush, Greater Sunder, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Sunder, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Power Attack, Toughness
Skills Craft (traps) +20, Knowledge (engineering) +19, Perception +23, Stealth +21
Languages Common, Dwarven
SQ ruin bond, unliving nature

Ecology

Environment any ruins
Organization solitary, family (2–6), or clan (7–12)
Treasure standard (studded leather armor, adamantine warhammer, other treasure)

Special Abilities

Fatal Accident (Su) Once per day as a standard action, a relictner can focus its deteriorating curse to wreak havoc around them. When using this ability, a relictner chooses a structure or manufactured object within 60 feet no larger than 15 feet by 15 feet, such as a statue, treasure chest, or support pillar. The chosen object falls, crumbles, or is otherwise compromised in such a way that it damages any creature adjacent to it, dealing 12d6 points of damage to each creature, or half as much damage to each creature that succeeds at a DC 21 Reflex save. Alternatively, the relictner can deal only 6d6 points of damage and also attempt a ranged bull rush, trip, or sunder maneuver check as a free action with a +4 racial bonus against each target that fails its Reflex save (sundering in this way deals 6d6 points of damage). This attack may deal more or less damage depending on the object chosen and the GM’s discretion, and it typically creates difficult terrain in the area around it. The DC is Charisma-based.

Ruin Bond (Su) A relictner forms a bond with the structure it calls home. Single relictners form bonds with huts or houses, families of relictners bond with castles or temples, and clans can bond with entire ruined cities. All structures in a relictner’s bonded ruin lose 1 hit point per day and can be reduced to a minimum of 10 hit points. Within its bonded ruin, a relictner gains a +10 bonus to AC and on saving throws against environmental effects and any traps. A relictner can have only one bonded ruin at a time but can create a new one by living in a suitable structure for at least 1 week. A relictner who spends more than 24 hours away from its bonded ruin becomes fatigued and shaken until it returns to the ruin.

Ruin Sense (Su) A relictner is instantly aware of any creature that dies within its bonded ruin, as well as the direction and approximate distance of the dead creature.

Weathering Aura (Su) A relictner radiates an entropic aura of decay and disrepair. All objects within 30 feet of a relictner, including held and worn nonmagical objects, have their hardness reduced by 5, to a minimum of 0, as long as they are within the area of the weathering aura and for 1 round after leaving the area. This is a curse effect.

Description

A relictner mortic is two entities in one: a vicious, grasping curse and its half-undead dwarven host. The hosts resemble gaunt, prematurely aged dwarves, their hair gray and ragged, their faces nothing but masses of wrinkles. The curse, however, is a strong and subtle thing, rotting and weathering everything the relictner sees or touches until only ruins are left. Outcast and eternally bitter, most relictners remove themselves to abandoned halls and forgotten ruins that they remake into shrines of mortal despair, filling their new homes with traps and pitfalls to snare the unwary.

A typical relictner stands about 4 feet tall and weighs 125 pounds.

Ecology

Sometimes, when a dwarf survives the affliction of a mummy’s curse, a sliver of that dread power remains in her blood, lying dormant for years or even generations. The curse mutates, and its host mutates in turn to become the half-dead creature known as a relictner. The two grow together in a kind of twisted symbiosis, until it becomes hard to tell where the relictner ends and its curse begins. Removing a relictner’s curse (possible only with wish or miracle) kills it instantly, as the curse has long since taken over the host’s vital biological functions.

Soon after its curse manifests, a relictner feels an urge to claim some kind of structure or building as its own. A relictner considers its home a vital part of its being, much like a hermit crab’s shell, and few relictners willingly leave their chosen lairs. A relictner forced to leave its home experiences bouts of twitchy, agoraphobic mania interspersed with melancholic lethargy. This is not to say that relictners don’t sometimes grit their teeth and travel—a relictner is an intelligent creature, after all—but it takes quite a lot of motivation.

A relictner’s curse encompasses its chosen home, weakening it, desecrating it, and turning even the greatest example of dwarven architecture into a barely standing ruin within a matter of months. Relictners’ ruins are places where terrible accidents can happen with little warning, and where lives can be lost in sudden structural collapses. Relictners themselves are almost never in any danger, however. The mortic’s curse may not be alive in any conventional sense, but it does have some tiny spark of awareness, enough to make a point of never harming its host.

Whenever someone dies inside the cursed ruins of a relictner, the mortic feels a sudden rush of energy and confidence as its curse fulfills its true purpose. The more painful, agonizing, and despair-ridden the death, the greater the subsequent high. The same ability also makes it easy for relictners to stalk prey within their domiciles, as they can usually find survivors nearby.

Habitat and Society

A few relictners try to hide in larger dwarven society, though their destructive aura makes it difficult— people tend to notice when fine dwarven workmanship falls to pieces in a matter of weeks, and to dwarves, relictners are nothing less than abominations, horrific blasphemies that by their very nature destroy everything that dwarves strive to create. Those relictners who manage to hide do so by pretending to be older than they are and by living in slums or shantytowns, places where one more ruined building won’t be remarked upon. More often, though, relictners are exiled or forced out. These bitter outcasts seek existing ruins, where they either live alone as hermits or in small, orderly clans, and from which they plan their revenge on the living.

Relictner ruins tend to be terrifying places to visit. Relictners generally seek out the most impressive ruins they can find, ideally those with curses or undead residents of their own—relictners are immune to other jinxes, and they get along very well with liches or mummies, offering service in exchange for residence. They are expert trapmakers and delight in devising creative ways to violently mutilate and kill their victims.

Of course, creating traps that never get triggered is boring, so relictners routinely lure visitors to their ruinous homes. Particularly duplicitous relictners have even been known to hire adventuring parties as unwitting meat for their grinders, finding these capable targets a satisfying test for their skills.