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Ophiduan, Hominis Caste

The individual before you might pass for human, were it not for the supple scales that make up her skin. Her eyes are dark and unblinking, her features gaunt, her teeth unusually sharp. A dark shock of hair begins at a widow’s peak at her forehead, and flows down her neck and back.

Ophiduan, Hominis Caste CR 5

XP 1,600
CE Medium monstrous humanoid (reptilian)
Init +6; Senses darkvision 60 ft., scent; Perception +15

DEFENSE

AC 19, touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+4 armor, +2 Dex, +1 dodge, +2 natural)
hp 45 (7d10+7)
Fort +3, Ref +7, Will +10
Defensive Abilities immune to poison; SR 18

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.
Melee masterwork spiked chain +10/+5 (2d4+1)
Ranged masterwork longbow +10/+5 (1d8/x3)
Special Attacks command serpents, ophidiophobia
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 8th)
At will
alter self
3/day—entangle (DC 15), hypnotism (DC 15), sleep (DC 15)
1/day—charm monster (DC 18), deeper darkness, freedom of movement

TACTICS

Hominis prefer to let semiferum and anguineum do their fighting for them, directing from the rear like so many generals. When they must engage in battle, they strike from a distance with their spell-like abilities (and spells, when they have them). Only if the tide of battle depends on immediate reinforcement do hominis willingly enter melee.

STATISTICS

Str 13, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 20, Wis 20, Cha 18
Base Atk +7; CMB +8 (+10 to trip); CMD 20
Feats Combat Casting, Dodge, Improved Initiative, StealthyB,Weapon Finesse
Skills Bluff +11, Diplomacy +11, Disguise +11, Escape Artist +11, Intimidate +14, Knowledge (religion) +12, Perception +15, Spellcraft +12, Stealth +14
Languages Ophiduan, Common, Abyssal, Aklo, Draconic, Undercommon
SQ speak with serpents
Gear ophiduan scale

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Command Serpents (Su)

A hominis can command serpents at will as the feat Command Undead. Serpent, in this case, is defined as any snake or snake-like creature of the animal type.

Ophidiophobia (Sp)

A hominis ophidian can psionically implant a terrible fear into the mind of a chosen creature within 30 feet. The subject must succeed on a DC 19 Will save or instantly develop an insurmountable phobia of snakes, which lasts for 5d4 minutes. For the duration, the subject is instantly panicked should any snake or snake-like creature (including ophiduan) come within 20 feet, and will not voluntarily move to within 20 feet of such a creature. This ability has an equivalent caster level of 14th. The save DC is Charisma-based and includes a +2 racial bonus.

ECOLOGY

Environment warm forest, jungle
Organization solitary, pair, clutch (3–5), or nest (2–5 hominis, 2–13 semiferum, and 2–4 anguineum), brood (10–80 hominis, 20–160 semiferum, and 10–40 anguineum)
Treasure double standard

The hominis caste are the culmination of the ophiduan’s years of experimentation. Combining the best aspects of humans and ophiduan (in their own eyes, at least), they are quick, vicious, and inhumanly intelligent. While a hominis ophiduan cannot pass for human under normal circumstances, their innate spellcasting abilities and their skills at deception and disguise make such masquerades easy to pull off. Many hominis move through human and humanoid communities without arousing even the slightest suspicion.

Initially, the hominis were created to serve the anguineum, just as the semiferum had been. The hominis swiftly realized, however, that while they were physically no match for their progenitors, their greater intelligence and aptitude for clerical spells made them the superior caste. They rose up in bloody rebellion, and when their divine magics proved more potent than those of the anguineum, the elder caste capitulated to their authority.

The hominis ophiduan average slightly taller than humans of the same weight. Their scaly skin covers the entire spectrum of hues, much as do those of true snakes, though darker colors such as blacks and deep greens seem most prevalent.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

The Iconic Bestiary: Classics of Fantasy Copyright 2005, Lions Den Press; Author Ari Marmell