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Atzri-Voca, Azcan Lich

by Christopher Cherrington

Most of this was developed from a Nithian Lich I used in the Adri Varma Plateau IMC (I have made a few modifications to better fit what I think would be a truly horrific Azcan Lich)

Atzri-Voca is truly ancient, quite possibly one of the first liches in Mystara. Before his Lichdom, he was a high war priest for the nameless 'Swallower of the 5th Sun', sometimes imaged as a jaguar in some ancient hieroglyphics. Atzri-Voca led the first rebellion against the Oltecs.

He was unsuccessful at completing this rebellion and was caught.

Atzri-Voca had this all planned out, one of the conditions he was given to become immortal was he had to be ritually killed by his enemy, the Oltecs (whom did not believe in the Azcan sacrifices). With much guile and trickery by his many followers and sympathisers, the Oltec king had been tricked into a public execution of the ritualistic type common to the Azcan people he was trying to quell. The Oltec king was given a warning by his priests, just hours before the execution; so the king decided to change one part of the ritual, at the finish of Atzri-Voca's execution, the king removed his head, feet, and hands; then threw them in a pool of piranha.

Atzri-Voca's followers, not daunted by the sudden change, still took hold of his lifeless body and brought Atzri-Voca to a far away and ancient Azcan pyramid that was prepared by Atzri-Voca and many of his priests in advance. Many of the priests sacrificed themselves to be in the same image as their beloved leader, while others prepared a new head for their leader. This new head was made of a large green emerald and cut to form the image of a skull. Several priest wanted their master to see, hear, and speak, so they cast several spells to make the skull produce true sight, ESP and telepathy. When all the final incantations were finished Atzri-Voca the Lich was born.

Atzri-Voca was not happy with his new form, and not at all happy he was undead. In a rage, he killed the last of his loyal priests. After he settled down, he then decided to reward his dead priests by performing rituals to increase his ability and give him some guards. He created 2 eye drujs, and 3 hand drujs to replace his original parts. He wears them all as replacements and animated a jaguar head to replace his left hand (this hand should be treated as like the Nightwalker's crushing ability). 4 of his original priests are now Revenants, and another 12 are Topi. Not stopping at his original quest for immortality, he continued work on his pyramid as a truly entropic artifact, and produced several powerful magic items to help him. One such item was a Huptzeen of 25HD, this is fashioned as an ornate gold and jade necklace that nearly covers the top half of his body front and back. He also wears a jaguar pelt as a cloak that gives him immunity any missile items, normal or magical. This cloak also confers partial protection from of 5th & 6th level spells and spell like effects (giving 1/2 to 1/4 damage). He also has fashioned an obsidian piranha that he 'uses' as a tongue that works like a magic jar effect if someone was courageous enough to try and turn him. Any successful turn attempt will give Atzri-Voca a saving throw vs spells, if successful the priest trying the turn must make a saving throw vs spells -the difference that Atzri-Voca made his save by, or be possessed by Atzri-Voca. While the priest is possessed, Atzri-Voca can still fight in hand to hand, and cast any spells that the priest has prayed for. If Atzri-Voca is slain while possessing another priest, the priest immediately becomes Atzri-Voca (minus any slain drujs and the skull). Atzri-Voca was a war priest and still has the abilities of a 6th level fighter, and is a cleric of 30th level. Because of his age, he also has these abilities (as with the other lich abilities), spoils/rots all consumable items in 120' (scrolls, potions, rations, clothing, et), can make an attack with his left hand and cast a spell every round or make 2 attacks with his left hand per round. Each druj has all the abilities of a normal druj, and can separate its forms and make additional attacks every round. The Huptzeen can also cast a spell every round as a 25th level magic user. Atzri-Voca also has attained the 2nd and 3rd circles as an Illusionist, and the 3rd circle as a Necromancer.

He is a truly powerful lich, but he is trapped inside his artifact (except for his dreams), at the moment.]

Any one foolish enough to combat Atzri-Voca will be in for a huge surprise.

They would not know of the druj or huptzeen as being part or separate of Atzri-Voca. In combat each druj would separate into 4, thus giving the illusion that Atzri-Voca is attacking with 8 gaze attacks, 9 hand attacks, 1 left hand attack and with the huptzeen, 2 spells (one clerical & one wizard) per round! Since he is a cleric lich, he can also summon more undead to his aid (and he has plenty of them around in his service already). A truly formidable opponent, and not meant for the weak hearted as well. When he possesses a cleric from a turn effect, Atzri-Voca will still attack, and be using up spells from the cleric (and he can choose from which body it casts from). Thus giving Atzri-Voca more attacks/round (depending on how many the cleric has) and he will use up any good spells from the cleric, before he uses his own, but this does not give an extra spell cast per round.

Atzri-Voca is smart enough to make the possessed cleric act as if nothing happened, and use his Bless Spells as Blight, use any Healing as Harming, et. Nothing like going into combat with a lich doing so much physical damage, then need healing by your unknowingly possessed cleric, and taking on another cause critical wounds from your cleric. If a possessed cleric is removed from the pyramid, and a remove curse by a 31st level caster, the possession is expelled, and the cleric will live. If however Atzri-Voca is destroyed while a cleric is possessed, the cleric becomes Atzri-Voca (as stated before). The cleric's soul still survives, and becomes trapped in the Artifact as a haunt. The only cure for this is to expel Atzri-Voca from the cleric as stated before. Then a raise dead spell will bring back the cleric's soul. Atzri-Voca will then reanimate in 1d10 days. If Atzri-Voca is destroyed without possessing any body, he is done with, destroyed, dead, never to return, or (DM's decision) player's might have been misled information that the only way to kill the lich is by some sort of ancient Azcan ritual (thus finally completing Atzri-Voca's ceremony and making him an immortal in the Sphere of Entropy). ;o)

Next issue, his artifact, Tapatl Oxitl the Great Azcan Pyramid.