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Velyaby Jamie Baty
Ocean Velya are a form of underwater vampire. They were once surface dwellers who became undead through an ancient curse. In its natural form, a velya looks like a blue-skinned human with gills and clawed hands and feet. Velya in human form are comely but have a feral appearance, with wild eyes, tangled hair, and tattered, shroud like clothing.
Despite their human appearance, velya, like vampires, can be easily recognised, for they cast no shadows and throw no reflections in mirrors.
Velya speak any languages they knew in life.
Creating a Ocean Velya
"Velya, Ocean" is an acquired template that can be added to any humanoid or monstrous humanoid creature (referred to hereafter as the base creature).
A velya uses all the base creature's statistics and special abilities except as noted here.
Size and Type: The creature's type changes to undead (augmented humanoid or monstrous humanoid). Do not recalculate base attack bonus, saves, or skill points. Size is unchanged.
Hit Dice: Increase all current and future Hit Dice to d12s.
Speed: Same as the base creature. An ocean velya also gains a swim speed of 40ft.
Armour Class: The base creature's natural armour bonus improves by +6.
Attack: An ocean velya retains all the attacks of the base creature and also gains a slam attack if it didn't already have one. If the base creature can use weapons, the vampire retains this ability. A creature with natural weapons retains those natural weapons. A velya fighting without weapons uses either its slam attack or its primary natural weapon (if it has any). A velya armed with a weapon uses its slam or a weapon, as it desires.
Full Attack: A velya fighting without weapons uses either its slam attack (see above) or its natural weapons (if it has any). If armed with a weapon, it usually uses the weapon as its primary attack along with a slam or other natural weapon as a natural secondary attack.
Damage: Velya have slam attacks. If the base creature does not have this attack form, use the appropriate damage value from the table below according to the vampire's size. Creatures that have other kinds of natural weapons retain their old damage values or use the appropriate value from the table below, whichever is better.
Special Attacks: A velya retains all the special attacks of the base creature and gains those described below. Saves have a DC of 10 + 1/2 velya's HD + velya's Cha modifier unless noted otherwise.
Blood Drain (Ex): A velya can suck blood from a living victim with its fangs by making a successful grapple check. If it pins the foe, it drains blood, dealing 1d4 points of Constitution drain each round the pin is maintained. On each such successful attack, the velya gains 5 temporary hit points.
Children of the Sea (Su): Velya command the lesser creatures of the sea and once per day can call forth a pack of 3d6 sharks as a standard action. These creatures arrive in 2d6 rounds and serve the velya for up to 1 hour.
Velya's Song (Su): Velya in human form can sing. A velya's song can be heard up to a mile away. Anyone who hears the velya's song must succeed on a Will save or fall instantly under the velya's influence as though by a dominate person spell (caster level 12th). If the save is made, that person is immune to the song for 24 hours.
Create Spawn (Su): A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by a velya's energy drain rises as a wight (as a normal wight but gains a swim speed of 40 ft) 1d4 days after death.
If the velya instead drains the victim's Constitution to 0 or lower, the victim returns as a wight if it had 4 or less HD and as a velya if it had 5 or more HD. In either case, the new velya or wight is under the command of the velya that created it and remains enslaved until its master's destruction. At any given time a velya may have enslaved creatures totalling no more than twice its own Hit Dice; any spawn it creates that would exceed this limit are created as free-willed velya or wights. A velya that is enslaved may create and enslave spawn of its own, so a master velya can control a number of lesser velya in this fashion. A velya may voluntarily free an enslaved spawn in order to enslave a new spawn, but once freed, a velya or wight cannot be enslaved again.
Energy Drain (Su): Living creatures hit by a velya's slam attack (or any other natural weapon the velya might possess) gains one negative level. For each negative level bestowed, the velya gains 5 temporary hit points. A velya can use its energy drain ability once per round.
Special Qualities: A velya retains all the special qualities of the base creature and gains those described below.
Alternate Form (Su): A velya can assume the shape of a great white shark or manta ray as a standard action. This ability is similar to a polymorph spell cast by a 12th-level character, except that the velya does not regain hit points for changing form and must choose from among the forms mentioned here. While in its alternate form, the velya loses its natural slam attack and Velya's Song ability, but it gains the natural weapons and extraordinary special attacks of its new form. It can remain in that form until it assumes another or until the next sunrise.
Damage Reduction (Su): A velya has damage reduction 10/silver and magic. A velya's natural weapons are treated as magic weapons for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
Fast Healing (Ex): A velya heals 5 points of damage each round so long as it has at least 1 hit point. If reduced to 0 hit points in combat, it automatically assumes its current of water form and attempts to escape. It must reach its submerged, lightless crypt within 2 hours or be utterly destroyed. (It can travel up to nine miles in 2 hours.) Any additional damage dealt to a velya forced into current of water form has no effect. Once at rest in its crypt, a velya is helpless. It regains 1 hit point after 1 hour, then is no longer helpless and resumes healing at the rate of 5 hit points per round.
Current of Water Form (Su): As a standard action, a velya can assume current of water form at will, similar to the gaseous form spell (caster level 5th), but it can remain in watery form indefinitely and has a swim speed of 60 feet with perfect manoeuvrability.
Resistances (Ex): A velya has resistance to cold 10 and electricity 10.
Human Form (Su): A velya can assume the form of a human at will. It will appear comely, but somewhat wild and feral. A velya has access to all its velya abilities while in human form.
Turn Resistance (Ex): A velya has +4 turn resistance.
Abilities: Increase from the base creature as follows: Str +6, Dex +4, Int +2, Wis +2, Cha +4. As an undead creature, a velya has no Constitution score.
Skills: Velya have a +8 racial bonus on Bluff, Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Search, Sense Motive, Spot and Swim checks. Otherwise same as the base creature.
Feats: Velya gain Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Improved Initiative, and Lightning Reflexes, assuming the base creature meets the prerequisites and doesn't already have these feats.
Environment: Any Ocean
Organisation: Solitary, pair, gang (3-5), or troupe (1-2 plus 2-5 wights)
Challenge Rating: Same as the base creature +2.
Treasure: Double standard.
Alignment: Always evil (any).
Advancement: By character class.
Level Adjustment: Same as the base creature +8.
For all their power, velya have a number of weaknesses.
Repelling a Velya: Velya recoil from anything that would cause an accurate reflection, like a mirror, or a strongly presented holy symbol. These things don't harm the velya-they merely keep it at bay. A recoiling velya must stay at least 5 feet away from a creature holding the mirror or holy symbol and cannot touch or make melee attacks against the creature holding the item for the rest of the encounter. Holding a velya at bay takes a standard action.
Velya are also unable to go without contact with water. Velya cannot leave the water; those who do completely disintegrate after 1d4 rounds. The velya suffers no ill effects, however, so long as the least part of its body stays submerged. If the velya returns to the water before it disintegrates, it still loses half of its original hit points.
During the day, a velya must rest in a submerged, lightless crypt. Velya crypts usually are ancient burial chambers hidden within sunken cities, but any enclosed, utterly dark space will serve. If a bless spell is cast on the crypt and a holy symbol is left in it, a velya can never rest there again, even if the holy symbol is later removed. If a velya falls to rest in its crypt, it suffers 2d8 points of damage each day. These points cannot be regenerated until the velya rests in its crypt for a full day.
Slaying a Velya: Reducing a velya's hit points to 0 or lower incapacitates it but doesn't always destroy it (see the note on fast healing). However, certain attacks can slay velya. A velya that is taken completely put of water will disintegrate in 1d4 rounds. Driving a wooden stake through a velya's heart instantly slays the monster. However, it returns to life if the stake is removed, unless the body is destroyed. A popular tactic is to cut off the creature's head and fill its mouth with holy wafers (or their equivalent).
Velya are always evil, which causes characters of certain classes to lose some class abilities. In addition, certain classes take additional penalties.
Clerics: Velya clerics lose their ability to turn undead but gain the ability to rebuke undead. This ability does not affect the velya's controller or any other velya that a master controls. A velya cleric has access to two of the following domains: Chaos, Destruction, Evil, Storm or Trickery.
Sorcerers and Wizards: Velya sorcerers and wizards retain their class abilities, but if a character has a non-aquatic familiar, the link between them is broken, and the familiar shuns its former companion. The character can summon another familiar, but it must be an aquatic creature.
This form of velya is found in marshes, fens, and bogs. Swamp velya are identical to ocean velya with the following exceptions:
Children of the Swamp (Su): Velya command the lesser creatures of the swamp and once per day can call forth a pack of 3d6 crocodiles as a standard action. These creatures arrive in 1d4 rounds and serve the velya for up to 1 hour. This replaces the Children of the Sea special attack ability.
Alternate Form (Su): A velya can assume the shape of an albino crocodile or giant white eel as a standard action. This ability is similar to a polymorph spell cast by a 12th-level character, except that the velya does not regain hit points for changing form and must choose from among the forms mentioned here. While in its alternate form, the velya loses its natural slam attack and Velya's Song ability, but it gains the natural weapons and extraordinary special attacks of its new form. It can remain in that form until it assumes another or until the next sunrise. This replaces the ocean velya's Alternate Form ability.