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by Jamie Baty

X4 29, DMR2 15
Medium Monstrous Humanoid
Hit Dice: 7d8+14 (45 hp)
Initiative: +0
Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
Armour Class: 16 (+6 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 16
Base Attack/Grapple: +7/+8
Attack: Claw +8 melee (1d4 +1)
Full Attack: 2 Claw +8 melee (1d4 +1) and bite +6 melee (1d6 + Numbing Bite)
Space/Reach: 5 ft. /5 ft.
Special Attacks: Numbing bite
Special Qualities: Bhut aura, bhut immunities, bless vulnerability, damage reduction 10/magic, darkvision 60ft., human form
Saves: Fort +4, Ref +5, Will +7
Abilities: Str 13, Dex 11, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 15, Cha 12
Skills: Diplomacy +4, Disguise +4, Gather Information +3, Hide +5, Listen +8, Move Silently +17, Search +3, Spot +8, Survival +4
Feats: Alertness, Multiattack, Power Attack
Environment: Any land
Organisation: Solitary, Pair, or Clan (5-20)
Challenge Rating: 5
Treasure: Standard
Alignment: Always lawful evil
Advancement: by character class
Level Adjustment: +3

Legend says that bhuts came into being long ago when an angry Immortal cursed a town that had defiled her temple. The town was destroyed, and the scattered blasphemers became bhuts. Their chilling bite is a reminder of the Immortal's cold rage.
During the day, bhuts look like normal humans. At night, their skin grows scaly, their hair becomes wild, their fingers become claws, and their teeth turn into fangs. Then they set out to feast on humans and demihumans. Would-be scholars sometimes classify bhuts as undead or lycanthropes. However, bhuts cannot be turned, and they cannot pass on their shape-changing condition as werebeasts do.
A bhut clan likes to prey upon victims that are alone and vulnerable- especially a lone traveller or wandering drunk. Such deaths are the least likely to arouse suspicions among the locals. Rarely do people inquire about the fate of a strange traveller (who may, after all, have moved on), and it is often assumed that the town drunk has found a sad and lonely demise (perhaps dying in a ditch somewhere).
Humans are the staple of bhuts' diets. Perhaps for this reason they consider demihumans, whose societies are harder to infiltrate, especially tasty.
Bhuts speak Common and their own language.

Bhuts are extremely cunning and often use deception and trickery to obtain their meals. A bhut usually attacks with its claws and bite. The wound inflicted by its bite is freezing to the touch. While in human form bhuts may use simple weapons.

Numbing Bite (Ex): Any creature bitten by a bhut must make a fortitude save vs DC 15 (Con based). If the save is failed, the victim is numbed for 1d4 rounds. A numbed character automatically loses initiative and suffers a -2 penalty to all attack rolls and skill checks.

Bhut Aura (Ex): A bhut is surrounded by an aura that disrupts any attempt to determine the bhut's alignment or true nature (detect evil, detect law, etc...) The result of those attempts will usually result in the caster believing the bhut is a lawful good human.

Bhut Immunities (Ex): Immune to mind-influencing effects, poison, sleep, paralysis, stunning, disease, death effects, necromantic effects, and any effect that requires a fortitude save unless it also works on objects. Not subject to critical hits, subdual damage, ability damage, ability drain, energy drain, or death from massive damage. It cannot be raised, and resurrection works only if it is willing. The creature has darkvision 60 ft. unless otherwise noted.

Bless Vulnerability (Ex): A bhut hit by a blessed weapon is instantly killed.

Human Form (Su): During daylight hours, a bhut appears in all respects as a normal human. While in human form, the bhut does not have access to its claw and bite attacks, and its natural armour bonus is reduced to +1.

Skills: A bhut receives a +12 bonus to all Move Silently checks.

Bhut Society
Bhuts live near human settlements, preying on the inhabitants. Often the creatures work together. Normally they assume some innocent cover (monks, travelling gypsies, a family on the edge of town, etc.) to lessen suspicion. They interact with human society-at least enough to appear "normal" but only during the daylight hours.
Clans are the social Organisation of bhuts. A clan may have an innocuous cover for human society, while in fact it is the bhuts' cooperative means of getting food. Each clan is ruled by an elder, male or female. The elder makes important decisions for the group, including how to divide food and treasure. Fear and loyalty keep others in line. The elder is usually the patriarch or matriarch; all other clan members are related to the elder by blood or marriage.
The elder also decides when the clan should move to a new place. Timing is important. Only so many disappearances can occur before someone investigates. The bhut's natural aura provides a modicum of protection against magical inquiries, but eventually they will be discovered. The elder not only determines when they will move, but where they will move and the identities they will assume.
Bhuts can reproduce within the clan. However, female bhuts can breed with human males (usually with the aid of some deception). The offspring are always bhuts.