Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Ecology Of The Bloody,Bloody, Arduin Manticore For Your Old School Campaigns

'Child seek not the Manticore nor the gateways & nexuses it comes from. Seek not the planes it frequents nor the places it calls home. Look not into its blue liquid eyes or ask for its terrible wisdom for it is a wilde & dangerous hate of olden times. It is evil incarnate & not to be trusted.'
Pliues The Elder Star Mage

'Good evening ladies & gentlemen welcome to tonight's lecture. Tonight we will be talking about one of the most dangerous creatures to stalk the stars & old Earth. I speak tonight of the Manticore one of the most underscored menaces to come out of the nexuses' The whole curtain parted & the crowd gathered in the auditorium caught its collective breath. Dr.Idrani minister of xeno-biology & ecology waited for the murmur of the crowd to die down as the force field held & the monster beyond was revealed. 'You are all perfectly safe our guest has agreed to be here & is at easy I can assure you all.' The human like head looked out into the crowd with sardonic wit, a hint of a devil may care attitude, & just a wisp of madness at the edges of its blue eyes. It was perfectly in control of its situation & the wings flexed lazily as the lights came up dramatically around it.
'Behold the Arduin manticore Anbruis of the mountain kingdom of the country of Scruisi who has graciously agreed to be here with us tonight. This noble monster's ancestors fought along side the titans & among themselves trace their royal linage all the way back to Tiamat the mother of monsters & dragons. Our guest has the body of a red lion, a noble but alien like head with those piercing blue eyes. There are also three rows of incredible sharklike teeth & of course the tell tale deep trumpeting rumbling like voice.' 'Of course you notice the black wings which are totally unlike a bat's but closer to certain demonic specimens' This is because our guest is a creature of the arcane world & considerably infused with the very raw stuff of magick itself enabling it too not only fly but defy the laws of nature herself.' 'The stinger is a marvel of dark demonic design a thing of horror able to pierce light metals & hurl bolts of cartilage like bone envenomed over distance of 30 or 40 feet.'

Almost on cue a roar seems to fill the auditorium from someplace deep within the bowels of the monster  Anbruis. The doctor chuckled to himself & began again, 'Our guest tonight is not of the horned variety of manticore which among their own kind denotes a subspecies touched by madness for their service & worship of the forbidden gods & devils. Even among their own kind which has a taste for human flesh these things are considered psychopathic killers & mad stricken monsters. For they not only kill their own prides but any thing or anyone they come across. They can & will track a man for weeks or months just for the sheer pleasure of the hunt & kill.' 

'Our guest tonight is not such a creature at all & devours his prey whole leaving not one trace or scrap behind. He leaves no leaves no clothes, bones, or possessions of the prey for he is not a messy eater.'Our guest tonight is distantly related to the royal satyral, a legendary creature with "the body of a lion, the tail and horns of an antelope, and the face of an old man" who were the royal magical advisors & hunters to the Titans.' Several of the crowd rankled at that remark which the doctor let pass. 'Moving on. Anbruis is an accomplished expert in linguistics, puzzles, & principal applications  higher metaphysical arcane theory. He is able to think 'side ways' comparable to a human mind because of his semi demonic linage. Because of this ancestry he and his kinde are immune to the gaze of the Medusa, the touch of ghouls, & even his own venom.' 'These developments were artificial in nature & given to these noble monsters as part of a program of warfare! These creatures are not merely murders & stalkers of lonely places as the legends would have us believe! They are weapons of murder from a time before time!'
 'So why is Anbruis here among us? Because he wishes to open diplomatic relations between us and his kingdom' 'I will have quiet among you! You have come here tonight for entertainment, and for my findings!' The beast behind the force cage stirs at the words and its eyes dart among the crowd piercing the audience in their seats with its gaze! 'Ask yourselves what would scare a creature of primal chaos in its veins to open relations with us. What scares a monster able to see in the night, smell the colour of your hair, eyes, clothing and able to tear through metal with its claws?'

'Hear me man things & you who have profited from trade with Arduin, something is coming. Though I rule a kingdom with one hundred prides of lampago warriors & two hundred satyral night hunters something has been stalking my kingdoms & killing my mercenary warriors. My advisors tell me it is a power from beyond the old days, my wizard's sight has been obscured, & even my world walkers fear certain doorways. So I'm here now to seek you out, should my kingdom fall yours is next.'

'Speak with your elders & rulers flesh that walks. Tell them of my warning, look deeply into my face things that fought me in the desert sands & have slain my kin. Tell them of the blood on my claws and the horror that is in my heart that has killed my mate whist I slept next to her even as it took my child across from us. Tomorrow I meet with your leaders & I have agreed to this spectacle to satisfy your morbid curiosity of my countenance. This show is over now' The auditorium filled with a billowing darkness that snuffed out lights, caused panic in the crowd, it was followed by screams from various points in the crowd itself.  'There is no reason to panic ladies & gentlemen, everything is under control!' The doctor's voice seemed unsteady but then the lights came back up of their own violation but various lords & ladies were struck down & dead around the auditorium. Never one to led an opportunity go Anbruis had struck with curses & spells against those who had struck against him & his desert nation in the past. He had delivered his warning & departed.
But what of his cryptic warning? Dr.Idrani minister of xeno-biology & ecology quickly smiled nastily as he quickly wiped his piercing liquid blue eyes over his spectacles. Would the flesh things head the warning in time? Only time would tell.

  So what is happening here?! An intelligent Manticore ruler of a small desert kingdom someplace near Ancient & Accursed Terra's version of Persia? In a word? Yes! This was made possible by using
the Arduin Eternal Bestiary & Treasures book along with Adventurer, Conqueror, King's Lairs & Encounters pdf  from Autarch  which enabled me to quickly sketch out the desert country of Scruisi. I'll have more details on that when my game starts.

The Arduin Manticore has been taken from the Arduin Eternal Bestiary and Treasures book available right HERE. All ecology & supposition is by me but details on the country of Scruisi has been created from the ACK's Lairs & Encounters book available here

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