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Jaime Honey-Creeper Ahua

by John Calvin

Jaime’s History
The last descendant of the Stonecarver kings, Jaime was the high priest/druid of a secret sect of Ordana worshipers during his people’s occupation by Taymora. When that nation finally started to crumble due to infighting and civil war, Jaime seized the opportunity and threw off the yolk of his oppressors.

Unfortunately it was at just this moment, that the last remnants of ancient Mogreth, led by the dragon Ehrssus, descended upon the last refuge of the Stonecarvers, decimating them. Jaime destroyed Ehrssus, but was mortally wounded during the battle. With his dying breath, Jaime cursed the dragon and all of her followers to a slow and painful demise. The remaining lizardmen succumbed to a mysterious desiccating disease and were completely wiped out over the course of the following decades.

Jaime’s spirit persisted, and his undying body reformed from the earth itself. For a time he journeyed among the Nithian explorers of the era in search of his people, but never found them. On the islands of Ierendi however, he did rediscover his legacy. Lizardmen who had lived in relative peace with their neighbors for centuries were dying a slow and painful death, withering away until their bodies were little more than desiccated husks. Appalled at what he had wrought, Jaime settled among the islanders and set about the task of undoing the curse he unleashed centuries before.

Though ultimately unable to alter the lizardmen’s fate, Jaime has nonetheless remained in the area, determined to return balance to the region that his own rage and carelessness have decimated.

Jaime’s Cave
Jaime’s domain is a vast cavern beneath Elegy Island, nearly every inch of which has been tirelessly worked by his undead minions over the centuries. Stalactites shaped to look like massive trees appear to brace the cavern’s ceiling, their trunks and roots extending down into the floor. Murals depicting the natural world have been carved into every wall, and fungi from the mundane to the giant are grown and nurtured by Jaime’s minions.

In the center of the cavern lies another massive statue; a vast stone tree with branches outstretched. Within its base is carved a temple to Ordana, its inner sanctum holding Jaime’s phylactery, the ancient skull of Ehrssus.

The Skull of Ehrssus
This blackened skull appears to be made from charred bone fused with obsidian. It was discovered by Jaime shortly after his body reformed from the earth, and is tied to his life force. Within the skull grow a myriad of fungi, their mycelial tendrils stretching out from the Temple of Ordana to touch nearly every section of Elegy Island.

Jaime’s body will reform as long as either the skull, or its mycelium, remain intact. Should the skull be destroyed and even the smallest portion of its symbiotic fungi remains (anywhere on Elegy Island) it will reform somewhere else on the island. Because of his link to the artifact, Jaime knows where the skull is at all times, even if it has been destroyed and reformed in another location. The only way to destroy Jaime and his phylactery (sans Ehrssus’ rebirth - see below), is to first eradicate all traces of the skull’s fungus and mycelium - a daunting task indeed.

Jaime’s life force isn’t the only one tied to the blackened skull… some portion of Ehrssus remains intact inside of it as well. Though the ancient Mogrethian sorcerer turned dragon doesn’t have enough power to dominate Jaime directly, she can sometimes enforce her will by working through Jaime’s undead, fungal minions. She is careful to only do so when she knows Jaime is distracted and focused on more pressing issues, but nonetheless the lich knows she inhabits the skull and is mindful of keeping an eye on her. Ehrssus’ ultimate goal is to find a body to be reborn into. Should she succeed, the black skull will shatter into fragments, and Jaime’s phylactery will be destroyed.

Jaime’s Minions
Jaime has various minions that he can call upon to do his bidding, both alive and undead, and some in between. The pride of Jaime’s menagerie are three giant ant colonies that inhabit his cavern, one in the north, and two to the south and west. Over the centuries the ants have developed an immunity to the spores of yellow musk creepers and formed a symbiotic relationship with the dangerous plants. Each of the three ant colonies feed and tend their own yellow musk creeper garden. While the spores do not infect living ants, they will animate the husks of dead ants, creating additional workers and warriors that help defend the hives… and Jaime’s cavern.

Other undead can be found in his employ as well, including skeletons and zombies in all stages of decay scattered throughout his domain. These remain mostly dormant, covered in slime and various fungal growth until called upon to act by their master. More powerful creatures can also be found wandering in his cavern, including fungoids, desanu, and even one sacrol (the embodiment of all the lizardmen slain by the Nithian plague of BC 500). Of these the sacrol is the most dangerous, and Jaime is careful to keep it under control in his lair lest it wreak havoc upon the living of the surface.

A small village of myconids tends to Ordana’s temple in the middle of the cavern. They help tend and nurture the fungi growing in the cave, and sometimes set forth into the dark to deal and trade with other denizens of the Shadowdeep. Their leader is a burgeoning druid, and acolyte under Jaime’s tutelage.

Two other creatures may be found in Jaime’s company on occasion; ancient desiccated corpses of lizardmen who succumbed to the Nithian plague centuries ago. Of the two Chief Ha’assii is the younger, once a leader of his people on the Ierendi Islands. Ha’assii’s last living memories were of his people being swept away by the immortals. Since attaining unlife, he has come to believe that the plague was a punishment inflicted upon his people for their past transgressions.

Ssurush, the elder, does not share Chief Ha’assii’s assessment. She was a sorceress in life, a survivor of the Mogrethian flood, and one of the first lizardmen to fall to the Nithian curse. Ssurush has been with Jaime since he found her corpse during his early exploration of the mainland. Since that time she has come to know that the lich is hiding something important from her, and thanks to the whisperings of Ehrssus in her ears, she suspects that the secret has something to do with the plague that killed her.