This knight wears armor patterned like raven feathers with a helmet shaped like a raven’s head and gauntlets fit for oversized talons.
AC 34, touch 24, flat-footed 26 (+7 Dex, +2 dodge, +5 insight, +10 natural)
Speed 60 ft., fly 110 ft. (average)
Constant—deathwatch, freedom of movement, haste, tongues, true seeing
Str 32, Dex 25, Con 26, Int 19, Wis 20, Cha 23
Bleed damage dealt by a vilderavn’s natural and manufactured weapons stacks with itself and other sources of bleed damage. In addition, the bleeding it causes is difficult to stanch—a successful DC 26 Heal check or a DC 26 caster level check (if using a magical healing effect) is required to stop the bleed damage. This is a curse effect.
The DC is Charisma-based.
A vilderavn can use the hexes listed in its special attacks entry as an 18th-level witch. The save DC to resist a vilderavn’s hex is 25, and is Charisma-based. A vilderavn also uses its Charisma modifier, instead of its Intelligence modifier, to determine the other variables of its hexes.
When a vilderavn assumes humanoid form with its change shape ability, it loses its natural armor bonus but becomes fully garbed in black +5 full plate that is almost part of its body. This armor has no movement speed penalty, maximum Dexterity bonus, or armor check penalty. (For a typical vilderavn, this changes its AC to 38 and its flat-footed AC to 30.) Also as part of the transformation, it gains a +5 cruel keen falchion formed from its vicious talons. These items are part of the vilderavn’s being and disappear when it is slain. A vilderavn in humanoid form is considered to be proficient in all types of armor, shields (except tower shields), and martial weapons.
A vilderavn’s frightful presence creates disloyalty, doubt, and dissension in addition to fear. Creatures that fail their saves are no longer treated as allies to other creatures and can’t provide flanking, use or benefit from teamwork feats or aid another actions, or allow other creatures to move through their space. Any spell or effect that requires a willing target fails if used on an affected creature, and even harmless effects require an attack roll (if applicable) and require affected creatures to attempt a saving throw to resist their effects (if a save is allowed). Creatures that are immune to fear can still be affected by the shatter loyalties component of a vilderavn’s frightful presence; they ignore the shaken condition but are otherwise affected as described above. This is a mind-affecting effect, and the save DC is Charisma-based.
A vilderavn’s bite attack threatens a critical hit on an 18–20. If a vilderavn kills a humanoid foe with a critical hit from its bite attack (including a coup de grace), it can tear out the victim’s heart and consume its soul. Creatures that witness this savagery are frightened for 1d4 rounds, or shaken for 1 round if they succeed at a DC 27 Will save. Also, the vilderavn gains the benefits of death knell, and the slain creature is affected as per rest eternal (caster level 18th).
While the target remains dead, the vilderavn gains access to that creature’s memories and can use its change shape ability to assume a perfect likeness of the slain creature, gaining a +10 bonus on Bluff and Disguise checks made to impersonate it. The vilderavn can store any number of souls.
Organization solitary, pair, or unkindness (3–5)
A vilderavn is a malicious shapechanging spirit whose typical form is that of an oversized raven with a wingspan of 6 to 8 feet that stands 2 to 3 feet tall. Vilderavns sometimes roam in the shape of wolves or dire wolves, and are known to appear as monstrous raven-wolf hybrids akin to black-feathered perytons. They can also walk in humanoid guise when they wish, often assassinating victims of rank and assuming their victims’ places.
They have an unusual affection for their swords, often granting them threatening names.
Vilderavns are drawn to war and suffering, often haunting battlefields—especially during protracted sieges. They are particularly drawn toward rulers and commanders, and might insinuate themselves into the confidence of leaders with their clever tongues and deft rumor-mongering. They are deceivers and heralds of woe, seeking to lure the rulers of mortal kingdoms into jealous feuds and fruitless wars with one another. To do this, they often cultivate reputations as master duelists, brilliant mercenary leaders, or unjustly banished nobility from distant lands. Regardless of their guises, vilderavns’ advice usually seems wise and perceptive, steeped in an expansive knowledge of history, political rivalries, and cultural clashes, along with insights into the ways of war. Yet while their counsel might lead to early victories, their ultimate purpose is to bring doom to all sides. At the height of the battle, when victory seems nigh, a vilderavn often instigates a wave of betrayal, crippling erstwhile allies and bringing devastation.
Only when a ruler’s kingdom or a commander’s army lies in ruins does a vilderavn administer the coup de grace.
It is said that the first vilderavns were created by a vicious fey lord as a check and counter to the hubris of mortal rulers, especially those who put their trust in armies and steel to drive back the wild lands. The boasting and braggadocio of those mortals who believed they had achieved mastery over the followers of the old ways offended the fey lord, who sent vilderavns to infiltrate their ranks. The vilderavns watched from the shadows and learned the ways of mortals, the better to use their own weapons and strategies against them. In torment and blood, they peeled away the secrets of mortals, laying the last truths of their hearts bare before bestowing the gift of death on them. Even in death, however, a vilderavn’s victims languish, stretched across the threshold of the afterlife yet tethered to the fey spirit’s merciless heart. Their minds are open books for this fey to unravel and use in cruel and hurtful ways.
Vilderavns sometimes amuse themselves by offering false oracular advice or tempting bargains to mortals, promising power in exchange for the blood of innocents.
A vilderavn typically claims to be cursed into its animal form, insisting that only innocent blood will release it.
If its mark is foolish enough to accept its bargain, the vilderavn often returns wearing the innocent’s flesh to torment its supposed ally and drive her to insanity. A vilderavn might even offer an irony-laced limited wish to sweeten its bargains and truly test a mortal’s resolve.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 5 © 2015, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Dennis Baker, Jesse Benner, John Bennett, Logan Bonner, Creighton Broadhurst, Robert Brookes, Benjamin Bruck, Jason Bulmahn, Adam Daigle, Thurston Hillman, Eric Hindley, Joe Homes, James Jacobs, Amanda Hamon Kunz, Ben McFarland, Jason Nelson, Thom Phillips, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Alistair Rigg, Alex Riggs, David N. Ross, Wes Schneider, David Schwartz, Mark Seifter, Mike Shel, James L. Sutter, and Linda Zayas-Palmer.