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Vohrahn (Dread Codex Monster)

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Vohrahn
Size/Type: Medium Undead
Hit Dice: 4d12 (26 hp)
Initiative: +0
Speed: 30 ft.
Armor Class: 15 (+5 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+6
Attack: Claw +6 melee (1d6+4 plus cursed touch)
Full Attack: 2 claws +6 melee (1d6+4 plus cursed touch)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Cursed Touch, Tainted Passion
Special Qualities: Damage Reduction 10/magic or silver, Darkvision 60 ft., Fast Healing 3, Undead Traits
Saves: Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +6
Abilities: Str 18, Dex 10, Con —, Int 7, Wis 10, Cha 12
Skills: Climb +4, Hide +2, Intimidate +4, Listen +2, Move Silently +2, Spot +4
Feats: Iron Will, Power Attack
Environment: Any
Organization: Solitary or squad (3-5)
Challenge Rating: 4
Treasure: None
Alignment: Usually chaotic evil
Advancement: 5-9 HD (Medium)
Level Adjustment:

A humanoid with grievous wounds moves in awkward step. Its arms end in sharp talons and its dark face is highlighted by fiery orange eyes.

Created by spellcasters by binding dead spirits to the bodies of fallen warriors, vohrahn are lost souls trapped within corpses, whose distress over their predicament only furthers their masters' goals.

A vohrahn's body appears as it did at the time of death, whatever injuries that killed it still present. The sharp talons all bear are a result of the animation process. Its jerky movements are the result of the spirit's unfamiliarity with the host body, as well as the body's injuries and decomposition.

A vohrahn feels no pain and is completely subject to its master's will. Most despair of ever being free, and show no resistance. Rarely, a vohrahn's trapped spirit will maintain its self-identity and fight for control of the body, but such efforts are ultimately futile. When a vohrahn is destroyed, the magic binding its spirit is shattered, allowing the spirit to escape. A peaceful spirit may depart from a vohrahn's eyes in a wisp of vapor, sending the body toppling to the ground. Other spirits escape more violently, causing their host bodies to burst into flame and disintegrate into green smoke.

Combat Edit

Vohrahn rarely wield weapons, preferring to rend opponents with their claws. They are usually encountered in groups, sent on whatever missions their creators demand.

Cursed Touch (Su): Any creature that suffers damage from a vohrahn's claws must succeed on a DC 13 Will save or suffer a -4 morale penalty on all attack rolls, saving throws, ability checks, and skill checks for 1d4 days. Whether or not the save is successful, an affected creature cannot be affected again by the vohrahn's cursed touch for 24 hours. Dispel evil or remove curse eliminates the effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Tainted Passion (Su): Every vohrahn contains the soul of a dead being who was at peace before its entrapment. The spirit's passionate desire to return to death is converted by the vohrahn's animating magic into violent power, but the power's nature depends upon the nature of the spirit. All vohrahn have one of the following abilities. All save DCs are Charisma-based.

  • Burning Fury: Vohrahn who rage over their entrapment can set their opponents on fire. When the vohrahn hits with its claw attack, its opponent must succeed on a DC 13 Reflex save or catch fire, taking 1d6 points of fire damage on its next turn. The flames burn for 1d4 rounds, or until extinguished. Each round, the burning creature must make another Reflex save. Failure means he takes another 1d6 points of fire damage that round. Success means that the fire has been put out. A character on fire may automatically extinguish the flames by jumping into enough water to douse himself. If no body of water is at hand, rolling on the ground or smothering the fire with cloaks or the like permits the character another save with a +4 bonus.
  • Icy Steadfastness: A vohrahn who focuses all its will toward resisting its master develops a coating of frost, and deals an extra 1d4 points of cold damage to opponents hit by its claw attack.
  • Shield of Vigilance: A vohrahn who feels a sense of duty to obey its master until its mission is complete is protected by a magic circle against good (caster level 10th). The circle can be dispelled, but the vohrahn may create it again on its next turn as a free action.
  • Spirit of Undeath: After decades or centuries of existence, the vohrahn's animating magics have worn a hole between the realms of life and death. The vohrahn's passion is gone, but its power causes creatures slain by its claw attacks to rise as zombies under the vohrahn's control after 1d4 rounds. They do not possess any of the abilities they had in life. A vohrahn with 7 or more Hit Dice can raise creatures as wights instead.
  • Vicious Render: The vohrahn finds satisfaction in taking out its anger on the living. When the vohrahn hits with both claws, it latches onto its opponent's body and tears the flesh. This attack automatically deals an extra 2d6+6 points of damage.
  • Wail of Despair: The vohrahn, whose spirit despairs of being freed, can let out a howl, paralyzing all creatures within 30 feet for 1d4 rounds (Will DC 13 negates). Whether or not its save is successful, a creature cannot be affected again by that vohrahn's wail for 24 hours. This is a sonic, necromantic, mind-affecting compulsion effect.

Treasure Edit

None — As a member of the undead, vohrahn have no use for treasure. But in this particular monster's case, treasure may actually be a violent trigger. Depending on the spirit which inhabits the body, wealth may be a sign of its former like and cause the vohrahn to lash out against any creature seen carrying some—be it jewelry or even a few gold pieces.

In Your Campaign Edit

Whether or not your campaign has an established protocol concerning the afterlife, the concept of the vohrahn should be able to fit in nicely, especially from an adventure standpoint. Characters attempting to contact the spirits of the dead (as part of a murder investigation, for example) find that they receive no answer. Such a result is unheard of so the characters consult someone who knows of spiritual matters who confirms that such occurrences have been noted throughout the region. This is the beginning of trail which leads the party to a necromancer who has begun creating vohrahn, stealing local spirits before they can reach the afterlife. Alternately, a necromancer might be taking a more proactive stance and planning the deaths of others on a massive scale, for the purpose of harvesting their angry spirits in order to raise an army of vohrahn.

Or perhaps the battling of a vohrahn is but the means to an end. The party hardly wants to destroy this monster if the soul inhabiting it happens to be that of a close friend or family member. Can a trapped soul be set free again to enjoy eternity in the afterlife? Or will destroying the vohrahn mean destruction for the soul inside as well?



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