Random Encounters
The Shadow Glade
By Jesse Decker

Twisted Denizens of the Shadow Glade

The shadar-kai, an evil race of fey cursed to lose their souls to the Plane of Shadow, have bound that plane's dark essence to the heart of an ancient forest. In so doing, they allowed creatures from the Plane of Shadow access to the Material Plane. These creatures, gifted with the power of shadow and twisted to evil, have attacked and driven out other denizens of the forest. These creatures now roam the Shadow Glade and the surrounding forest at will. Anyone traveling through the region risks encounter and ambush.

The following creatures might all be encountered in or near the Shadow Glade.

Shadow Wolf: CR 2; Medium magical beast (augmented animal); HD 2d8+4; hp 13; Init +2; Spd 75 ft.; AC 14, touch 12, flat-footed 12; Base Atk +1; Grp +2; Atk +3 melee (1d6+1, bite); Full Atk +3 melee (1d6+1, bite); SA trip; SQ cold resistance 7, damage reduction 5/magic, darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent, shadow blend; AL NE; SV Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +1; Str 13, Dex 15, Con 15, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 6.

Skills and Feats: Hide +2, Listen +3, Move Silently +9, Spot +3, Survival+1 (+5 tracking by scent); Track, Weapon Focus (bite).

Trip (Ex): A shadow wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the shadow wolf.

Scent (Ex): The shadow wolf can detect approaching enemies, sniff out hidden foes, and track by sense of smell.

Shadow Blend (Su): In any conditions other than full daylight, a shadow wolf can disappear into the shadows, giving it total concealment. Artificial illumination, even a light or continual flame spell, does not negate this ability. A daylight spell, however, will.

Skills: *Wolves have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.

Shadow Dire Bear: CR 8; Large magical beast (augmented animal); HD 12d8+51; hp 105; Init +1; Spd 60 ft.; AC 17, touch 10, flat-footed 16; Bast Atk +9; Grp +23; Atk +19 melee (2d4+10, claw); Full Atk +19 melee (2d4+10, 2 claws) and +13 melee (2d8+5, bite); Space/Reach 10 ft./5 ft.; SA improved grab; SQ cold resistance 17, damage reduction 5/magic, darkvision 60 ft., fast healing 2, low-light vision, scent, shadow blend; AL NE; SV Fort +14, Ref +11, Will +7; Str 31, Dex 13, Con 19, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 10.

Skills and Feats: Hide -3, Listen +9, Move Silently +7, Spot +9, Swim +13; Alertness, Endurance, Run, Toughness, Weapon Focus (claw).

Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, a shadow dire bear must hit with a claw attack. It can then attempt to start a grapple as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity.

Fast Healing (Ex): The shadow dire bear regains hit points at the rate of 2/round. Fast healing does not restore hit points lost from starvation, thirst, or suffocation, and it does not allow the shadow dire bear to regrow or reattach lost body parts.

Scent (Ex): The shadow dire bear can detect approaching enemies, sniff out hidden foes, and track by sense of smell.

Shadow Blend (Su): In any conditions other than full daylight, a shadow dire bear can disappear into the shadows, giving it total concealment. Artificial illumination, even a light or continual flame spell, does not negate this ability. A daylight spell, however, will.

Shadow Treant: CR 9; Huge magical beast (augmented plant); HD 7d8+35; hp 66; Init -1; Spd 45 ft.; AC 20, touch 7, flat-footed 20; Base Atk +5; Grp +22; Atk +12 melee (2d6+9, slam); Full Atk +12 melee (2d6+9, 2 slams); Space/Reach 15 ft./15 ft.; SA animate trees, double damage against objects, trample 2d6+13; SQ cold resistance 12, damage reduction 10/slashing, darkvision 60 ft., fast healing 2, low-light vision, plant traits, shadow blend, vulnerability to fire; AL NE; SV Fort +10, Ref +1, Will +7; Str 29, Dex 8, Con 21, Int 12, Wis 16, Cha 12.

Skills and Feats: Diplomacy +3, Hide -9*, Intimidate +6, Knowledge (nature) +8, Listen +8, Move Silently +5, Sense Motive +8, Spot +8, Survival +8; Improved Sunder, Iron Will, Power Attack.

Animate Trees (Sp): A shadow treant can animate trees within 180 feet at will, controlling up to two trees at a time. It takes 1 full round for a normal tree to uproot itself. Thereafter it moves at a speed of 10 feet and fights as a treant in all respects. Animated trees lose their ability to move if the shadow treant that animated them is incapacitated or moves out of range. The ability is otherwise similar to liveoak (caster level 12th). Animated trees have the same vulnerability to fire that a treant has.

Double Damage against Objects (Ex): A shadow treant or animated tree that makes a full attack against an object or structure deals double damage.

Trample (Ex): As a standard action during its turn each round, a shadow treant can run over an opponent at least one size category smaller than itself. The trample deals 2d6+13 points of bludgeoning damage. A trampled opponent can attempt either an attack of opportunity at a -4 penalty or a Reflex save (DC 22) for half damage.

Fast Healing (Ex): A shadow treant regains hit points at the rate of 2 hit points per round. Fast healing does not restore hit points lost from starvation, thirst, or suffocation, and it does not allow the shadow treant to regrow or reattach lost body parts.

Plant Traits: A shadow treant is immune to poison, sleep effects, paralysis, stunning, and polymorphing, and mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, phantasms, patterns, and morale effects). It is not subject to critical hits.

Shadow Blend (Su): In any conditions other than full daylight, a shadow treant can disappear into the shadows, giving it total concealment. Artificial illumination, even a light or continual flame spell, does not negate this ability. A daylight spell, however, will.

Vulnerability to Fire (Ex): A shadow treant takes half again as much damage as normal (+50%) from fire.

Skills: *Treants have a +16 racial bonus on Hide checks made in forested areas.

Bringing the Parts Together

Knowing that these creatures infest the forest, the shadar-kai scouts guarding the edges of the forest might attempt to lead any adventurers that prove dangerous into encounters with the shadow beasts. If the fight looks close, the shadar-kai then ambush the intruders, attempting to make the shadow animals take the brunt of the adventurer's offensive abilities.

Coming in Part 3 of the Shadow Glade

Take a look at the Plane of Shadow's effects on the Material Plane, and learn the secrets of a dangerous new ritual devised by the shadar-kai that forcibly binds creatures to the essence of shadow.

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