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Giant Devil’s Tooth

This enormous white fungus has sharp spines on its stalk, and its multiple caps are covered in blood-red globules that appear on the brink of rupturing.

Giant Devil’s Tooth CR 6 (XP 2,400)

NE Huge plant
Init +2; Senses blindsense 30 ft., low-light vision; Perception +13

DEFENSE

AC 19, touch 6, flat-footed 19 (–2 Dex, +13 natural, –2 size)
hp 58 (9d8+18)
Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6
Defensive Abilities acid rupture; Immune plant traits

OFFENSE

Speed 10 ft.
Melee 2 slams +12 (1d8+8 plus paralysis)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 15 ft.
Special Attacks paralysis (1 round, DC 16), spine spray, spore cloud

STATISTICS

Str 26, Dex 6, Con 15, Int 7, Wis 12, Cha 9
Base Atk +6; CMB +16; CMD 24
Feats Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Lunge, Power Attack
Skills Perception +13
Languages Sylvan (can’t speak)

SPECIAL ABILITIES

Acid Rupture (Ex)

If a creature damages a giant devil’s tooth with a bludgeoning or slashing weapon, some of its red globules burst, dealing 3d6 points of acid damage to creatures adjacent to the giant devil’s tooth. An affected creature that succeeds at a DC 16 Reflex saving throw takes half damage. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Spine Spray (Ex)

Once every 1d3 rounds as a standard action, a giant devil’s tooth can spray a barrage of spines from its stalk, dealing 6d6 points of piercing damage to each creature in a 15-foot-cone burst. A target that succeeds at a DC 16 Reflex saving throw takes half damage. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Spore Cloud (Ex)

Once per day as a standard action, a giant devil’s tooth can release a cloud of noxious spores in a 50-foot-radius spread centered on itself. This cloud lasts for 1 round before dispersing. Each creature that enters or begins its turn in the cloud must succeed at a DC 16 Fortitude saving throw or become nauseated for 1d3 rounds; a creature that succeeds at its Fortitude save is instead sickened for 1d3 rounds. The save DC is Constitution-based.

ECOLOGY

Environment any forest
Organization solitary
Treasure none

While mundane variations of this fungus exist in nature as small, fist-sized clusters that feed from the roots of host trees, the much larger, mobile giant devil’s tooth seems to draw its powers from far darker sources.

Some say the trees that give these fungi life contain the souls of ancient evil druids, imprisoned centuries ago for disgracing their circle. Others believe that devils themselves embedded infernal energy into the mushrooms while visiting the Material Plane, bringing these otherwise harmless hydnoids to life.

A ruthless creature with many ways to incapacitate its prey, a giant devil’s tooth often paralyzes its victims before slowly dissolving them for feeding. It crawls along the ground toward its quarry, and then rises up, revealing a large patch of jagged spines that it can eject in a devastating cone. When faced with multiple enemies, it releases a cloud of noxious spores before slowly moving in for the kill. The acidic globules that cover the surface of its cap provide it a self-defense mechanism against any would-be attackers that fight in close quarters.

A giant devil’s tooth can grow as tall as 24 feet and weighs 3,300 pounds.

Ecology

The giant devil’s tooth is often found in densely forested areas, where it begins as a seemingly normal devil’s tooth fungus engaged in a symbiotic relationship with a tree’s root system. Rarely, however, such a fungus grows many times larger than normal, as it becomes infused with evil, turning into a parasite of its host tree. Once the creature grows to full size and has exhausted its host tree’s resources, it detaches from the root system and crawls about the forest looking for more lively and nutrient-dense sources of food. While few forest animals are a match for the giant devil’s tooth, the fungus seems to prefer to hunt intelligent humanoids, leading many to believe that it derives some of its terrible power from such prey. Whether this taste for humanoids developed over time or was imbued in them at their creation is an issue of debate among scholars.

Though not known to be a particularly intelligent creature, the giant devil’s tooth is a tactical predator.

First paralyzing or nauseating its victims to negate their most dangerous attacks, it then attempts to bludgeon prey into a nutritious paste with devastating slams. Clumps of forest-floor detritus stick to its pale flesh, which contains traces of a paralytic poison that can immobilize living creatures it touches, while the blood-red acidic globules covering its cap readily burst when hit, spraying nearby creatures.

Rumors abound of alchemical uses for the giant devil’s tooth “blood”: some say the substance can be mixed with other rare reagents to provide a source of great healing, while others believe its essence can be used as a component for infernal rituals. However, the volatile nature of the liquid, along with the tremendous difficulty of obtaining it, makes rigorous testing all but impossible.

The origin of these creatures is still a source of great mystery to most, as few who venture into the heart of the territory of a giant devil’s tooth manage to make it out alive. If this were a mere unintelligent fungus roaming about looking for food, similar to other living aberrant plants, there would be less speculation. Over the years, however, clerics, paladins, and other holy warriors who have come into contact with a giant devil’s tooth have reported that the creatures radiate a definite aura of evil, thus lending credence to many of the dark theories surrounding their creation. In addition, numerous druidic and shamanic texts detail rituals in which dishonored members of a circle are put to death and fused with an element of nature, usually a tree, as penance for disgracing their fellow disciples. Such trees often exert an unnatural influence on their environs, including the fungi that feed from their roots, but it is unknown whether this is sufficient to produce a giant devil’s tooth. The idea that devils have a hand in the creature’s creation appears most often in stories told to children to keep them from wandering too far into the forest and eating suspicious mushrooms—few truly subscribe to the notion that the denizens of Hell have a hand in bringing the evil fungi to life.

Habitat and Society

A giant devil’s tooth is almost always a solitary predator, and while seeing a group of mundane devil’s tooth fungi is rarely considered a good omen, it is not necessarily a guarantee that a larger one is nearby. The host tree that gives life to a giant devil’s tooth ultimately becomes an eerie curiosity of nature; when the fungus finally detaches from the tree’s root, the tree shrivels and turns gray, taking on an almost rubbery texture, as if the evil fungus imparted some of its essence to the tree as it grew. Some believe that felling the tree that spawned a giant devil’s tooth will kill the fungus, but in truth, once the giant devil’s tooth has detached itself, there is no remaining connection between the two.

In the rare instances that a giant devil’s tooth is killed, any attempts to harvest its potentially alchemically valuable globules invariably fail, as the creature undergoes an unnaturally sped-up process of decomposition. When the fungus dies, its mysterious pools of red liquid lose their surface tension and quickly seep into the cap and stem, all of which dissolves in a matter of minutes, leaving behind a large mass of noxious pink sludge.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Pathfinder Adventure Path #128: Songbird, Scion, Saboteur © 2018, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Crystal Frasier and Richard Pett, with Tim Akers, Logan Bonner, Brian Duckwitz, Amanda Hamon Kunz, Troy Lavallee, Patchen Mortimer, and Linda Zayas-Palmer.