|No. of Attacks:||1|
|Special Attacks:||See below|
|Special Defenses:||See below|
|Size:||S (3-4’ tall)|
From the dark land of Sithicus comes word of a breed of vampire only recently released on the demiplane of Ravenloft: the kender vampire. While not truly the equal of the other species of vampire, these monsters are no less evil.
Kender vampires retain the same general physical properties that they did in life. Thus, they stand somewhat under four feet in height and are very slightly built. Their eyes and ears give them an impish, elven look, and their slender bodies are finely muscled, like those of gymnasts. Upon closer examination, however, the foul corruption of the undead is obvious. The skin is pale and withered, stretched tight across the bones in a manner similar to that found on mummified corpses. The teeth are long and sharp, giving the face a feral look that cannot be easily forgotten. The fingers have been reduced to little more than bones with a thin covering of flesh, and their nails have stretched into claws.
Kender vampire are able to speak only in hissing whispers. Since it is clearly quite painful for them to talk, however, they seldom do so. Their knowledge of languages seems unchanged from what it was in life, however, so they often understand a small number of other tongues.
Combat: The kender vampire moves slowly and stiffly when it attacks. Thus, the great agility and dexterity that served it so well in life have been lost in its transition to darkness. Because of this, kender vampires always act last in any combat round and never surprise their opponents. The loss of agility is somewhat compensated for by an increased physical strength and the growth of dangerous claws. Thus, they are able to inflict 1d6 points of damage in any hand-to-hand attack.
Kender vampires often use the hoopak, a combination staff-sling and bo staff. When employed as a sling, it enables the creature to hurl stones that inflict 1d4+1 points of damage to small or man-sized opponents and 1d6+1 points to larger foes. If used as a bo staff, it causes 1d4 points of damage to man-sized or smaller foes and 1d6 points of damage to larger ones.
Anyone struck by the claws of the kender vampire feels far more than the pain of a physical wound. Their attacks reach beyond the mortal body of their victim and strike directly into his spirit. The shock and pain caused by this attack is great, requiring the victim to make a saving throw vs. paralysis or be unable to act on the next combat round. Whether or not they make their saving throw, they suffer a loss of 1 point each from their Intelligence and Wisdom scores. Those kender who die from the spirit-rending attack of the kender vampire are in no danger of becoming vampires themselves, however, for these foul creatures are the product of dark sciences and magical experimentation that can only be duplicated with the direct intervention of Lord Soth of Sithicus.
The kender vampire has the ability to throw back its head once per hour and release a hideous laugh. Those within 20 yards of the vampire when it cackles must save versus spells or be affected as if they had looked upon a symbol of insanity. Those under the influence of a remove fear or similar spell are immune to this attack.
The kender vampire can be hit only by magical +1 or better weapons. Non-magical wooden weapons that strike the creature are instantly rotted and destroyed; magical wooden weapons are entitled to a saving throw vs. acid to avoid this effect.
The mystical nature of the vampire’s physiology is such that it is able to regain lost hit points very rapidly. Thus, the creature regenerates 2 hit points per combat round. A raise dead spell cast upon the monster will restore it to full hit points at once.
A kender vampire that is driven to zero hit points in combat is not truly destroyed. Rather, its body is slain and it is forced to assume its spiritual form. Because this new form is very easily destroyed (see below), the kender vampire will immediately try to flee from the combat area and return to its coffin. If it is unable to reach its coffin within 12 turns, the creature will become trapped in this form and remain a poltergeist until slain.
At will, the kender vampire is able to transform itself into a purely spiritual creature similar to a poltergeist. While in this form, it is invisible and has all of the characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses of a common poltergeist. If the creature is slain while in this form, it is forever dead, and the world is free of its evil machinations.
Kender vampires are immune to sleep, charm, or hold spells and can never be influenced by any form of mind-affecting magic, They are wholly unaffected by all manner of toxins, poisons, and diseases. Spells or other attacks that rely on cold or heat (including ice and fire) inflict only half damage to kender vampires, but lightning- or electricity-based attacks inflict full damage.
Holy water splashed on a kender vampire is somewhat harmful to them, inflicting 1d4 points of damage per vial that strikes their flesh. Holy symbols pressed against their skin inflict a like amount of damage and cause the creature such pain that it must make a morale check or flee from the battle at once if possible.
Kender vampires are unable to leave the domain of Sithicus. The strange and foul magics that created them have forged an unbreakable bond between them and the realm of Lord Soth. Any attempt to cross the borders of this domain (whether voluntary or not) instantly destroys the vampire. Within seconds, its body will crumble into dust and the thing will be gone. Even drawing near to the border is painful for these creatures, and they will seldom come within a mile of it for fear of being forced across it and destroyed.
Kender vampires are unusually easy to turn. It is thought that this is due to the fact that their inner spirit is unbroken by their transformation into an undead thing and, thus, they do not have the mental stamina that similar undead do when confronting devoutly religious individuals. Whether or not this is the case, kender vampires are turned as if they were only wraiths.
Kender vampires are not as hard to destroy as many other types of undead, for they are greatly vulnerable to their own hoopaks. Any vampire hunter who is able to snatch a vampire’s hoopak from him and then turn that weapon against its owner will find that it inflicts full damage and has no chance of being destroyed like other wooden weapons. Further, any natural attack roll of 19 or 20 indicates that the attacker has been able to impale the creature on the end of the weapon, killing it instantly. As soon as the creature dies (either from wounds inflicted with the hoopak or by being impaled upon it) the body bursts into flames. In the next few seconds, both it and the weapon are consumed by fire and irrevocably destroyed.
The kender vampire cannot stand the sight of shimmerweed (a crystalline plant that grows on Krynn and in some secluded areas of Sithicus). The mere sight of these flowers is enough to keep the vampire from drawing within 10 yards of them. If moonlight is falling on these flowers, the prismatic display they release is enough to actually harm the creature, inflicting 1d4 points of damage for each round that the plants are within 20 yards of the vampire.
Habitat/Society: The kender vampire is a solitary creature that exists only to do the bidding of Lord Soth of Sithicus. He is the father of their race, and, although they despise him for what he has done to them, they are unable to turn against him or act in any way contrary to his interests.
Knowing the revulsion that the elves who live in his domain feel for all manner of unnatural things, Soth felt that he could find no better slaves than a band of undead. Aware that undead elves might pose a threat to his own power, Soth set about the creation of a new breed of undead. Drawing a small kender village through the misty veils of Ravenloft and into his domain, he had them killed one by one so that he could study their sufferings and invoke carefully designed magical rituals over their bodies in attempts to make them rise as undead. By the time he had finished with these sad kender, fully half of them had died horrible deaths and suffered unspeakable torment at the hand of the dreaded deathknight. The results of his experiments were, however, satisfactory to Soth, for he discovered a formula that would create a race of vampires utterly loyal to him. It is believed that Soth has created no fewer than 10 such monsters and no more than 30, although hard evidence to support any given estimate is hard to come by.
The typical kender vampire heads a small band of undead who also serve Lord Soth. As a rule, each such creature will command 3-12 (3d4) other creatures, drawn from the chart below.
|2d6 Roll||Type of Undead|
|2||Beast, Undead (Stahnk)|
In addition to the forces generated above, the creature will have 4-24 (4d6) Hit Dice worth of lesser undead (zombies and skeletons) acting under its command as well.
Ecology: Kender vampires can exist only within the confines of Lord Soth’s domain of Sithicus. They are tied to that dark land in some mystical way that, no doubt, relates to the evil magic used in their creation. It is possible that Lord Soth was required to invoke the favor of the Dark Powers in his creation of these dreaded monsters and, thus, that he has paid some horrible price for their loyalty to him.
Despite their links to Sithicus, the vampire kender are not natural creatures and, therefore, have no place in the biology of the world around them. The elves in Sithicus can sense the presence of one of these creatures whenever it comes within 100 yards of them. At first, the elves feel only a curious sense of concern or dread; but, as the monster draws nearer, the feeling intensifies into one of loathing and horror. The elves describe these sad creations as vile pollutants that foul the living by their mere presences. It is unclear why only those elves native to Sithicus can sense the kender vampire so easily.
Unlike the other vampires in Ravenloft, these creatures do not grow more powerful with the passing of time. It is a part of their curse that they must forever remain as they are, denied the pleasures of curiosity or the wanderlust that once gave their lives meaning. It is said that the rising of the full moon reminds these tragic souls of what they have lost and that, on that one night each month, they are unable to do anything but sit and weep beside the coffin that now serves them as both home and prison.
◆ 1912 ◆