Fiendish Codex I, Part 2
The Lost Annals
By Ed Stark, James Jacobs, and Erik Mona

Loremasters and other scholarly folk always seek information to fill the gaps of their knowledge. With luck and skill, they can discover knowledge that some find useful, but they sometimes find that others believe that the lore they pursue would be best forgotten eternally. The passages below fall into the former category for many who must deal with Abyssal topics in their research and their journeys. Why not take a look and make your own decision on the subjects discussed, though? What harm could it do?

With great pride, we present the "lost" sections of the Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss. Use the knowledge contained within these entries in good health.

Laghathti

Laghathti (lah-GATH-tee) are octopuslike demons that have existed for eons in the Abyss and are particularly at home in the black depths of the River Styx. They also crawl along its bleak shores.

The oily black waters surge and froth as a storm of tentacles erupts from below. Five of the midnight-blue tentacles have a pale blue underside studded with hundreds of tiny mouths. Five others are slimmer and end in wide paddlelike fins. Another two are shorter and more muscular, terminating in long, crocodilian jaws that make a horrific high-pitched wailing. The thing seems to have no body, only an indistinct knot of writhing ropes and tendrils at its core.

Laghathti CR 10

Always CE Large outsider (aquatic, chaotic, evil, extraplanar, obyrith)
Init +5; Senses all-around vision, darkvision 60 ft., true seeing; Listen +2, Spot +21
Aura form of madness (60-ft. radius, DC 17)
Language Abyssal

AC 24, touch 10, flat-footed 23
(-1 size, +1 Dex, +14 natural)
hp 126 (12 HD); fast healing 5; DR 10/cold iron or lawful
Immune mind-affecting spells and effects, poison
Resist acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, fire 10; SR 21
Fort +16, Ref +11, Will +10

Speed 20 ft. (4 squares), swim 50 ft.
Melee 5 tentacles +16 (1d6+5 plus mindwipe) and
2 bites +14 (1d8+2 plus mindwipe)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
Base Atk +12; Grp +21
Atk Options constrict 1d6+5, improved grab
Special Actions pounce
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 12th)
At will -- modify memory (DC 15)

Abilities Str 20, Dex 13, Con 22, Int 5, Wis 15, Cha 12
SQ all-around vision, amphibious, obyrith traits
Feats Ability Focus (mindwipe), Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Lightning Reflexes, Multiattack
Skills Climb +20, Escape Artist +16, Move Silently +16, Search +1, Spot +21, Swim +28
Advancement 13-18 HD (Large); 19-24 HD (Huge); 25-32 HD (Gargantuan)

All-Around Vision (Ex) Laghathti see through their skin and gain a +4 racial bonus on Search and Spot checks. They can't be flanked.

Amphibious (Ex) Although laghathti are aquatic, they can survive indefinitely on land.

Constrict (Ex) A laghathti deals 1d6+5 points of damage with a successful grapple check, in addition to damage from its tentacle attack.

Form of Madness (Su) A creature within 60 feet that observes a laghathti must make a DC 17 Will save. Failure indicates the creature suffers partial amnesia. The victim immediately gains 2d4 negative levels. These negative levels do not result from negative energy and never result in actual level loss, although they persist until cured by restoration or greater restoration. A creature that makes the save is immune to that particular laghathti's form of madness for 24 hours. This is a mind-affecting ability that does not affect chaotic evil outsiders. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Improved Grab (Ex) To use this ability, a laghathti must hit an opponent of any size with a tentacle attack. It can then attempt to start a grapple as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity. If it wins the grapple check, it establishes a hold and can constrict.

Mindwipe (Su) Anyone that takes damage from a laghathti's tentacle or bite attack must make a DC 19 Will save or gain one negative level as the hundreds of tiny mouths that cover their writhing bodies siphon away memories. Negative levels gained from a laghathti's mindwipe do not result from negative energy, and although they persist until cured by restoration or greater restoration, never result in actual level loss. This is a mind-affecting ability. The save DC is Charisma-based and includes the +2 bonus from the laghathti's Ability Focus feat.

Pounce (Ex) If a laghathti charges a foe, it can make a full attack.

Strategy and Tactics

A laghathti prefers to lie in wait, hiding just underwater and waiting until prey comes within 50 feet of its location. At this point, it charges through the water to take advantage of its pounce, bringing all seven of its mindwiping attacks to bear on a single target. If surrounded, it abandons its single target tactic and flails out at anything in reach. Laghathti are aware of the effects the River Styx has upon those who fall into its waters and do not hesitate to retreat into these dangerous depths with grappled foes.

Sample Encounters

Laghathti often travel in schools of two or more, floating lazily along the currents of the River Styx or prowling its shores in constant search of prey. Far of the River Styx, these demons are almost always encountered alone. Laghathti found alone outside their normal home are stranded and constantly seek a route back to the River Styx.

The Thing in the Lake (EL 15): A strange disease seems to be spreading among the citizens dwelling in the numerous small hamlets that dot the shores of Cinder Lake. People walking alone on the shores of the lake suddenly find themselves soaking wet and with partial amnesia. Most can remember their names, but their skills, professions, and abilities are strangely atrophied. None of the victims remember what caused their condition, save that their dreams are filled with terrible visions of suffocation. These people are the victims of a laghathti. It was called into the area by a planar ally spell, cast by a 5th-level spirit naga sorcerer named Daolithar. The naga uses the laghathti to capture and hold victims she selects from the lakeshore. What she does with or to them while they are captured is unknown (especially since she has the laghathti use modify memory to remove the memories of the encounter), but it certainly can't be good.

Laghathti Lore

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (the planes) can learn more about laghathti. When a character makes a skill check, the following lore is revealed, including the information from lower DCs.

DC Result

22 Laghathti loosely resemble demonic octopi. They dwell in the River Styx but often crawl up from the depths to hunt prey ashore. A laghathti can see in all directions at once and cannot be flanked.

27 A laghathti not only heals damage quickly but also is highly resistant to weapons not infused with lawful power or made of cold iron. It is resistant to most forms of energy except for sonic energy.

32 Laghathti feed on memories. They can drain away memories with horrific speed.

37 A laghathti can implant stolen memories (or even completely fabricated memories) into a mind as easily as it can wipe them away.

Ecology

Laghathti demons are immune to mind-affecting spells and effects as part of their obyrith nature, and as such are immune to the effects of the River Styx. They enjoy feasting on the memories of living creatures. When a laghathti gains a particularly tragic or depressing memory, it can spend hours or even days reveling in the despair of the memory. Often, it uses its modify memory spell-like ability to share this tragic event with others, especially if the target seems to be particularly susceptible to depression and sadness.

Environment: Laghathti are most common in the dark tributaries of the River Styx, although they can be encountered anywhere along this endless river's route. They can travel overland, although they seldom stray far from the River Styx.

Typical Physical Characteristics: A laghathti's tentacles span a length of 22 feet from tip to tip, with the central knot of its body comprising a roughly spherical mass about 8 feet in diameter. A laghathti weighs 750 pounds.

Society

In the larger scheme of things, laghathti are fairly unintelligent creatures. They know and understand the concept of rational thought but are incapable of manifesting it themselves. Instead, they live vicariously through the stolen and undigested memories of those they assault.

Typical Treasure

Laghathti do not keep treasure; they release bodies to float away once they have taken everything they can from its mind.


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