Friday, 20 February 2015

A monster for the Weekend, Sir? Nightgaunts

"Out of what crypt they crawl, I cannot tell,

But every night I see the rubbery things,
Black, horned, and slender, with membranous wings,
They come in legions on the north wind’s swell
With obscene clutch that titillates and stings,
Snatching me off on monstrous voyagings
To grey worlds hidden deep in nightmare’s well.

Over the jagged peaks of Thok they sweep,
Heedless of all the cries I try to make,
And down the nether pits to that foul lake
Where the puffed shoggoths splash in doubtful sleep.
But ho! If only they would make some sound,
Or wear a face where faces should be found!"- Night-Gaunt, by H. P. Lovecraft

Nightgaunts have a fine tradition in weird fiction and fantasy pulp, having been imagined by H.P. Lovecraft, and included within the Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath, and then later faced by Conan in the works of Robert E. Howard.

These creature of black, rubbery skin and membranous wings make a fine foe for our adventurers, but a quick search finds little evidence they have been stated up for Swords and Wizardry



The Night-Gaunt is strange and alien creature are set to guard site sacred to old and terrible gods, from those humans foolish enough to pry into the secrets of the elder gods. They may also be summoned throught ritual, at the be behest of sorcerers, to do their bidding. These faceless, horned creatures, swoop and circle in the night sky, in total silence before swooping down to  snatch up their pray, before taking them on fantastic journeys where the target sees great horror and beauty, before being dumped back somewhere they are unlikely to make trouble again.When a Night-Gaunt attacks, its visious barbed tail whips around lightly tickling its target in sensitive spots, such as the corner of the eye, threatening horrible injury and pain, though never actually inflicting it. Those who are attacked, must make a Save vs Paralysis, or be lifted off into the air, under the spell of the night-gaunts wicked tail. Once the Night-Gaunt has grabbed a target, it flies off, carrying the paralysised victim off into he sky at fullspeed. Should the Night-gaunt escape, the target is returned 1D10 hours later, having lost 1d4 wisdom.  They are deposited at random, within 10 miles of where they were picked up, and for the first 1D4 hours after their return, they wander aimlessly, ranting and raving about shoggoths dancing in the lake of Na'ath, black stars turning in the heavens, and monsterous maws that eat the very stars, or any other such non-sense. Wisdom lost to this horrid journey is restored at a rate of one point per month of unstressed rest in a setting of idyllic terrestrial beauty, or at the GMs discression, through magic 
  • Night-Gaunt: HD 3; AC 4 [15]Atk Tickle; Move 24 (flies); Save 14; AL C;
    CL/XP 5/240; Special: Tickle, Horrid Journey

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