Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W is for Walking Cactus

Welcome to the Tower of the Archmage’s April A to Z Challenge!

Today’s post is brought to you by the letter “W” the number “23” and the support of readers like you.

Thank you.

The sun’s light beat down upon the blasted landscape. A tall white tent stood alone in a field of odd flat cacti. Within the tent the adventurers did their best to keep cool.

“Do you think we’ll find him this time?” Rathgar asked quietly, mostly to break the silence.

Nimble paused fanning himself and his brow wrinkled. “I hope so. Sita has been missing for a long time.”

Allianora placed her hand on Nimble’s shoulder. “We’ll find her.”

“But the Magus first” Feris pointed out. “He must have a way of finding her.”

As the sun set, the adventurers exited the tent, Feris last, a braided rope with a large tassel in his hand that stretched back into the tent. Giving it a swift tug, and then releasing it, it snapped back into the tent. The whole structure vibrated for a moment before it collapsed down into a small square bundle of cloth with the braided rope wrapped around it. As Feris stooped down to pick it up, he noticed a nearby cactus seemed to be bowing its extremities in towards its central trunk.

All around them the cacti did the same, and slowly lifted themselves from the ground.

Diania Cactiformis aka Walking Cactus

Armor Class: 6
Hit Dice: 4+
Move: 30' (10')
Attacks: 1
Damage: 1d10+2
No. Appearing: 3d12
Save As: F5
Morale: 10
Treasure Type: Nil
Intelligence: 0
Alignment: Neutral
XP Value:
Monster Type: Lowlife

The Walking Cactus is an ambulatory desert creature distantly related to other giant bugs and worms. Its green coloration is the result of algae that grows upon its shell. During the heat of the day when the walking cactus rests immobile it buries its sensitive proboscis under the sand to protect it. During the night it roams the desert looking for sustenance. It is an omnivorous creature, and will eat anything from desert vegetation, carrion, to any creature that it can hunt.

Most of these beasts are between 8-12 (4-6HD) feet in length, standing about 3-4 feet from the ground, though the largest recorded specimen was over 20 feet long! It is able to lift its front portion an additional 3-4 feet. It attacks with its forelimbs, striking with them as spiky clubs.

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