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Dryad, Gravestone

This woman reeks of rot and earth, has dead wood for flesh, hair tangled with twigs and decayed leaves, and hands ending in wicked claws.

Gravestone Dryad CR 7

XP 3,200
NE Medium undead
Init +8; Senses darkvision 60 ft., lifesense, low-light vision; Perception +12

DEFENSE

AC 19, touch 14, flat-footed 15 (+4 Dex, +5 natural)
hp 85 (10d8+40)
Fort +7, Ref +7, Will +10
DR 5/silver; Immune undead traits
Weakness tied to the grave

OFFENSE

Speed 30 ft.
Melee claw +11 (1d4 plus 1d2 Con drain)
Special Attacks entomb
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 10th, concentration +14)

Constantspeak with dead (DC 17)
At willentangle (DC 15), stone shape
3/daycharm person (DC 15), deep slumber (DC 17), inflict light wounds (DC 15)
1/dayanimate dead, suggestion (DC 17)

STATISTICS

Str 10, Dex 19, Con —, Int 14, Wis 17, Cha 19
Base Atk +7; CMB +7 (+9 trip); CMD 21 (23 vs. trip)
Feats Combat Expertise, Improved Initiative, Improved Trip, Stealthy, Weapon Finesse
Skills Bluff +8, Climb +9, Craft (sculpture) +11, Disguise +12, Escape Artist +15, Knowledge (nature) +8, Perception +12, Sense Motive +11, Stealth +17, Survival +8; Racial Bonus Climb +4
Languages Common, Elven, Sylvan; speak with dead
SQ grave meld

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Entomb (Su)

Three times per day as a standard action, a gravestone dryad can entomb a living being within 100 feet of it in a hard-packed dirt coffin set in a shallow grave (Reflex DC 19 negates). The victim is considered grappled in the grave’s tight confines. It also has no air, so must hold its breath to avoid suffocating.

It can escape the grave with a DC 30 Escape Artist check or by destroying the dirt coffin (hardness 8, 30 hp, break DC 25). The save DC is Charisma-based.

A creature killed in this manner automatically rises as a zombie, breaking free of the coffin 1 round later. The new zombie is under the gravestone dryad’s control and doesn’t apply to the HD of undead she controls with animate dead. If the dryad is destroyed, the zombie becomes free-willed.

Grave Meld (Su)

A gravestone dryad can meld with a grave, similar to how the spell meld into stone functions, though the grave need only be half the size of the gravestone dryad. She can remain melded with a grave as long as she wishes.

Tied to the Grave (Su)

A gravestone dryad is bonded to a single graveyard and must never stray more than 300 yards from it. If she does, she immediately becomes sickened. Every hour thereafter, she must succeed at a DC 20 Will save to resist becoming nauseated for an hour. A gravestone dryad that is out of range of her bonded graveyard for 24 hours takes 1d6 points of Charisma damage, and another 1d6 points of Charisma damage every day that follows.

The dryad can forge a bond with a new graveyard by performing a 24-hour ritual and making a successful DC 20 Will save.

ECOLOGY

Environment any graveyard
Organization solitary
Treasure standard

Gravestone dryads are twisted versions of their former selves, created when a dryad‘s tree is felled near a cemetery.

The combination of the dryad‘s death, loss of her tree, and collective sorrow of the cemetery’s mourners calls to the dryad‘s soul and reunites it with its former body, which immediately sets out for the graveyard. They crave life—despite not needing it for sustenance—and despise the living for having what they no longer have. They lurk, listen, and watch during the day while melded with gravestones, and send out zombie minions by night to lure or drag back victims, but they are not above opportunistic kills during the day.

Gravestone dryads feel compelled to kill at least once per month but exercise patience to avoid discovery, going weeks between taking victims.

Much as gravestone dryads wish to destroy life, there is nothing they hate more than living fey and they go out of their way, even if it risks exposure, to destroy any fey they find. The dryads often travel to areas containing portals to the Fey World, simply to destroy fey as they pass from this world to the other. In return, fey seek out gravestone dryads to destroy them permanently—though often fey fall prey to their own self-assurance and wind up as zombies under a gravestone dryad’s control.

Fey fear that gravestone dryads and corrupted treants might work together in the future to destroy the fey realms, but so far these fears have been unfounded.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Wayfinder #18. © 2018, Paizo Fans United; Authors: Charlie Brooks, Calder CaDavid, Robert Cameron, Benjamin Chason-Sokol, Jeremy Corff, Jason Daugherty, Matthew Duval, Robert Feather, Kim Frandsen, Wojciech Grucha?a, Amy C. Goodenough, Taylor Hubler, Luke Hudek, Chris L. Kimball, John Laffan, Crystal Malarsky, Randal Meyer, Jacob W. Michaels, Daniel Angelo Monaco, Stewart Moyer, Dennis Muldoon, Andrew Mullen, Dave Nelson, Nicholas S. Orvis, Emily Parks, Lyn Perrine, Amanda Plageman, Matt Roth, André Roy, Stephen J. Smith, Kendra Leigh Speedling, Jeff Taft, Brendan Ward, Christopher Wasko, Nicholas Wasko, and Kerney Williams.