New Race: Jhareth

Before Daemoth created the daemons, Jharus' own progeny settled southern Vinramar. Once a proud civilization, the jharethil now struggle just to stay alive. They’re hunted mercilessly by the Eitharmos, a secret sect of militant Daemothites, who keep the common folk living in fear of the winged heretics.

The truth is that the jharethil were once the protectors of Vinramar, a symbol of honor and justice. When their final empire fell, Jharus took its cities into the heavens and sealed their gates against the unworthy. These hidden metropolises still hover in invisible space above the tainted world.

As celestial heirs of Jharus, the jharethil do not grow old with the passing years. They can be killed or become ill, but rarely die of natural causes. Death and the conscious taking of life are terrifying occurrences to them.

Like the daemons, jharethil can cloak their elder form, making them appear human. When viewed in all their true glory, they have feathered wings and a striking presence that can inspire either courage or fear.

ANONYMOUS VIRTUE

Throughout the world there are many organizations that defame, abuse, and hunt the jharethil. Those who could reach out to help them often remain silent for fear of being persecuted themselves. A jhareth quickly learns that only the closest of companions can be trusted with such a delicate secret. Those who impetuously confide in others may find themselves at the end of a rope before dawn. These are new times, when subtlety and cunning are a better defense than courage.

In the face of such persecution, individual jharethil react differently. Some become reclusive or lose their commitment to their people's moral code, others are motivated to change the world for the better. Feeling a need to care for those who hate or despise them is one of the great inner struggles of their people. Whatever they do, they must do it in secret if they want to live long.

It’s common for young jharethil to be unused to opposing philosophies or religions. They may be offended or confused by the atheistic practices of the outside world. Despite the value they place on patience, many will respond to betrayal of trust with sudden and unexpected anger.

Most jharethil do what they can to further the cause of their father Jharus, but some become embittered toward religion when thrust into the rigors of mortal life. They might look into other faiths, especially the more neutral primordial gods, but often the result is that they abandon religion for what they see as a more pragmatic way to survive.

But even these know that much of their power comes as a divine boon. It is difficult to give up spirituality as a jhareth, even if organized religion is set aside. They know their lineage, which is often enough to ensure they at least hold a distant respect for the gods. In most cases, jharethil are devout thinkers and eager to please whichever god they choose to obey.

EARTHY AND IMPOSING

Jharethil look very much like humans, especially when not in elder form. In general, they’re tall and broad, but this is by no means universal. They have golden brown or dark hair, and skin that's bronze or earthy brown. Their features are hard and defined, like cut stone.

When in their secret cities, or among trusted friends, jharethil may enter the elder form, which makes their skin and eyes shine with a golden light. With meditation, they can learn to manifest broad, feathered wings (often the color of their hair) while in elder form. Enemies confronted by a jhareth in elder form are likely to flee, unless they’re followers of Daemoth, in which case they might redouble the attack in a religious fervor.

STOIC BUT NURTURING

Jharethil are often patient and quiet. They believe that silence is the most respectable way to endure hardship, and they do it well. Although they may appear distant at first, jharethil are often intensely aware of the needs of others, and can be very nurturing, especially to those they consider weak or less capable. Overt competition is considered offensive in jhareth culture.

When the world was young, the jharethil were set over Vinramar as protectors. This sense of duty and self-sacrifice is deeply ingrained in their society. Even those who are raised outside the hidden cities are taught that true heroism doesn’t look for a reward.

Those jharethil that live in the Fallen World, as they call it, often do so to learn the value of peace through hardship. They may work as laborers, gain training in worldly skills, or seek ways to alleviate the downtrodden. Others are cast out of the secret cities for disobedience. There are also those raised outside the secret cities. These jharethil might be reared with a wildly different outlook, causing them to resent or doubt their divine birthright.

HIDDEN CITIES

Only the Secretsworn can perceive the presence of a jhareth secret city. The mystical bridges that enter them are located in the highest mountains or the most secluded canyons. Their inhabitants are under oath never to reveal the location, lest the Eitharmos discover their home and attack with greater force than can be withstood.

The creation and replenishment of life is of the highest importance to the jharethil, and most have many, many children. Because the jhareth women continue to bear as long as they live, it's known for some to rear hundreds over one immortal lifetime.

According to tradition, before a jhareth child turns 100, he or she will traditionally leave the shelter of the hidden city and experience the woe of the outside world. This fall from grace is a rite of passage, called a marachel, or “journey of heartbreak.” Sometimes the journey includes a vow of silence.

Though the experience is often bitter and dangerous, jharethil take the marachel very seriously. It’s through this journey that each jhareth learns to appreciate peace by experiencing what horrors exist in the world outside. The sojourn is intended to last 20 years, a mere moment to the immortals. Often, however, the woes of life prolong it, and some never return. Those who remain permanently in the Fallen World, whether for love, learning, adventure, or because of corrupting influences, are known as Outliers. They adapt to mortal life rather than return home.

FOREVER THE OUTSIDER

Whether jharethil are on marachel or were raised as an Outlier, they are likely to be in constant danger. The hunters of the Eitharmos, the Eithalim, are on constant search for the blood of heretics. Jharethil often resort to martial training or divine favor as a means of self-defense. However they survive, their greatest shield is obscurity.

JHARETH NAMES

Names in jhareth culture don’t carry much significance. A jhareth might use four or five different names, depending on the occasion or his or her stage of life. Titles and names seem to blend together for them. Family names are rare for them.

Male Names: Alchin, Amanias, Fastus, Gaeloch, Girthonnach, Icholloth, Ichorthor, Ingaelin, Jastron, Lenrodel, Rothengal, Ulthoroch, Wainrussor

Female Names: Anzora, Avrolcha, Belzana, Charozia, Elyndridan, Ezrachi, Forlaza, Ingria, Mozralchi, Mordolchi, Niravari, Onaya, Remozra, Sunbala, Uola

JHARETH TRAITS

You have the following abilities derived from your celestial heritage.

Ability Score Increase. Your Constitution score increases by 2.

Age. The jharethil mature very slowly. There are three periods of physical development (at the approximate ages of 10, 50, and 90). They reach full maturity around age 100, and rarely die of old age. Despite their long lives and many children, the jharethil are a dwindling race, hunted at great cost by the Eitharmos.

Alignment. While many jharethil were raised to believe in Jharus and his values of courage, reverence, and moderation, many adopt new philosophies as their understanding of the world grows, and moral complexities begin to disillusion them. The majority, however, are good-natured and law-abiding when they can afford to be.

Size. Medium.

Speed. 30 feet.

Immortal Lineage. You are considered immortal, a celestial, and a shapechanger.

Elder Form. You can use an action to enter the elder form or return to your polymorphed human form. While in elder form, you have advantage on Charisma checks, and your body sheds bright light in a 10-foot radius and dim light for an additional 10 feet. When fiends or undead enter the light of your elder form, they must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or become vulnerable to radiant damage while they remain in it. The save DC is 10 + your Wisdom modifier. A creature that succeeds on the saving throw is immune to this effect for 24 hours.

Those who see you in elder form can identify you as a jhareth with an Intelligence (Religion) or Intelligence (History) check of DC 10. Jharethil and characters with proficiency in History or Religion pass this check automatically. If you become unconscious while in elder form, you remain in elder form until you can spend an action to return to human form.

Beginning at 5th level, while in elder form you can spend 1 minute in meditation to sprout feathered wings, or reverse the change. While your wings are manifested, you have a fly speed of 30 feet. You can't manifest your wings if you're wearing armor unless the armor is made to accommodate them.

Stone Will. You have proficiency with Wisdom saving throws.

Languages. You can speak, read, and write the Hallowed Tongue and one extra language of your choice. The Hallowed Tongue is native to the world of Salvendum, and has a lofty, imperious intonation. It is a language as old as creation.

Subrace. Your upbringing may have been in or outside of the hidden cities of your people. Choose whether you are an Outlier or one of the Secretsworn.

OUTLIER

Outliers are jhareth exiles that grew up outside the majesty of the secret cities. These poor souls have fared the dangerous mortal world for a long time, perhaps making some trusted friends along the way.

Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 1.

Friend to the Friendless. You have advantage when making Wisdom (Persuade) checks.

SECRETSWORN

Used to the peace and slow decline of the jharethil’s fabled cities, the Secretsworn are the more sheltered of the jharethil, but also the best trained in the ways of their people.

Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 1.

Jhareth Weapon Training. You have proficiency with the greatsword and longsword.

New Race: Gugrum

Though descended from the ancient maahiset people, the gugrum have developed a far larger stature. Once ruling a powerful network of kingdoms, their civilization suffered an outbreak of civil war that left it tattered. In the following centuries, humans claimed their lands and shipped them to Motta as slaves, ending any chance of greatness for the gugrum.

Without much memory of their culture before slavery, the gugrum have become a quiet and subdued people, despite their height and strength. Very few manage to gain freedom during their lives, since the children a slave bears in captivity become the property of her master. Those who do might remain in Motta (where the population is racially diverse), but it’s more likely they’ll move to a place where they’re not mistaken for property.

Outside of bondage, gugrum live close to the earth in matriarchal communities. Though capable warriors when they need to be, pacifism and nonviolence have become their chief values.

THOUGHTFUL AND PRIVATE

Although formal education isn’t a part of most gugrum cultures, they are a perceptive and conscientious people. This reputation of being gentle giants may explain why they’ve been victimized in recent history. Exceptions can be found, but it's unusual to see a gugrum engage in outwardly violent or aggressive behavior. Though they no doubt feel these emotions, they’ve been trained from birth to hide anger and selfishness.

Such cultural taboos result in a propensity for gugrum to be quiet company. Even their large gatherings seem placid compared to those of other races. They admire silence and see it as a sign of intelligence, while impulsive chatter is disdained as attention-seeking and disruptive. When foreigners visit a gugrum city, they often turn heads with the volume of their conversation.

ASHEN GIANTS

The gugrum are generally taller than most other races, with a brawny musculature, and proportionately larger hands and feet. This makes them not only physically imposing, but also talented builders, miners, athletes, and soldiers. Ironically, few of these vocations are common in gugrum society—but they’re the chief tasks set for gugrum slaves in human cultures.

The skin of the gugrum is a slate grey color. Their blood is a deep blue, and shows clearly through the skin, giving it a lightning or tree-branch pattern. Every gugrum’s unique vein-pattern shows differently, and is one of their primary methods for indentification. A few gugrum grow thin hair, but most are nearly hairless. Its color is usually a shade of grey. Their eyes trend toward warm colors like yellow, amber, or pink.

A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE

The gugrum were once the most numerous of the races descended from the maahiset. Their civilization occupied the vast grasslands known today as the Forlorn Marches. Around 2,400 years ago, rampant civil war ignited among them, and within a century, nothing was left but ruined towers and fields of bones. The few refugees that escaped this bloodbath were herded south as slaves, or else went north to settle the woodlands of Chayrshellech and the Norlythe.

Today, gugrum culture is largely matriarchal. Women are seen as spiritual and intellectual leaders, governing as philosopher-chiefs while the men act primarily as laborers and artisans. When the gugrum raised in patriarchal captivity encounter their free kinfolk, gender tension can become a serious point of conflict.

A cannibalistic society of gugrum called the Saethym live a nomadic existence in lands just north of the Waelslayg Mountains. The Saethym are polygamous and heavily male-dominated, which prevents them from integrating well with other gugrum cultures.

BORN IN CHAINS

The majority of gugrum are bred in bondage to humans. They live in estates and on plantations owned by their masters, and very rarely leave the grounds. This harsh life is a heavy burden to the gugrum, many of whom dream of freedom. Those who have escaped over the centuries will search out their free northern relatives.

The largest free gugrum societies build their cities of interconnecting stone towers. Most settlements, however, are made up of longhouses or large tents camped near their hunting grounds. Daily life there centers around family, food, and the larger good of the clan.

HIRED MUSCLE

Gugrum can be found adventuring in many places. Most who escape slavery enter the wide world without meaningful skills. These rely on their strength and keen intuition to get by on dangerous work. They might end up as mercenaries, trackers, or outlaws. Whatever their vocation, they tend to do it without complaint.

GUGRUM NAMES

Without their own language, gugrum usually use names from their oral tradition, or simply adapt names from whichever culture's language they’ve appropriated. In slavery, the gugrum are usually named by their masters, and so can have what seem like ill-suited names. Below are examples of unique gugrum names.

Male Names: Adun, A’umo, Banga, Dul, Etumo, Gha’uro, Hibanma, Jo’al, Mhahad, Mustalig, Oba’i, Roda’im, Tiba.

Female Names: Asaba, Bindi, Dan-duro, Eballa, Ema, Gangos, Genta, Jalba, Mo’omad, Nandu, Olbara, Ya’aur, Zidfa.

GUGRUM TRAITS

Gugrum characters begin with the following racial traits as a result of their stature and shared tradition.

Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 2.

Age. Because family and the greater good are so important to the gugrum, they often have lawful alignments. Those gugrum that have been slaves, however, value their freedom highly. Fear of tyranny may pull them toward a neutral or chaotic alignment.

Alignment. Because family and the greater good are so important to the gugrum, they often have lawful alignments. Those gugrum that have been slaves, however, value their freedom highly. Fear of tyranny may pull them toward neutral or chaotic.

Size. Medium.

Speed. 30 feet.

Brute Hands. You have a +1 bonus to unarmed attacks and advantage on ability checks and saving throws against being disarmed.

Gugrum Weapon Training. You have proficiency with the blowgun, club, great club, net, sling, and spear.

Iron Thews. Whenever you take bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage, reduce the amount taken by 1.

Peak Physique. You have proficiency in the Athletics skill.

Languages. You can speak one regional tongue. Whether you can read or write it depends on your background. Consult with your DM and decide. Gugrum only have traces of their own language, so they speak whatever their nieghbors or masters speak. Their speech, however, is often adapted and blended with remnants of ancient Gugrum, giving them idioms and phrasology that may seem strange to other speakers. Because of their limited opportunities for education, few gugrum can read or write.

Subrace. Gugrum can come from very different worlds. Some were raised in the wilderness, learning the secrets of the land and sharpening their senses. Others were reared in the midst of human culture.

BA’ARETH

These are the typical gugrum living in their own communities. Raised in remote areas, they tend to be more comfortable away from civilization, where there’s space to breathe and worship their chosen god in peace. The meaning of the name Ba’areth was lost with the memory of the ancient Gugrum tongue.

Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 1.

Bred in the Wild. You have advantage when making Intelligence (Nature) checks and Wisdom (Survival) checks.

SAETHYM

The cannibalistic Saethym live in the wilderness of northern Chayrshellech. A bit smaller than any other gugrum group, they likely bear a closer resemblance to their diminutive ancestors. Secret black arts have been passed down among them for thousands of years, making them clever and dangerous enemies.

Hunter-Sorcerer. You know one cantrip of your choice from the sorcerer spell list.

At 3rd level, choose one of the following spells: entanglefog cloudhealing word, or unseen servant. You can cast it once per day as a 1st level spell. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for this spell.

SLAVE-BORN

Like many gugrum, those born into slavery are tough. Their natural physique has been fortified by a life of back-breaking labor. The strongest might survive, but only the lucky see freedom.

Ability Score Increase. Your Constitution score increases by 1.

Work It Off. During a short rest, you regain a number of hit points equal to your proficiency bonus.

New Race: Mimessarch

The looming threat of the Darkplane is an ever-present reality for a mimessarch. Some develop their aberrant qualities through contact with the unnatural climes of the Darkplane or its native creatures. Others experience inexplicable physiological changes, only to discover an aberrant taint in their bloodline. Whatever the cause, mimessarchs manifest a powerful deformity while maintaining the at times vague appearance of their born race.

Mimessarchs know that they can’t escape their fate. The unnatural deformity remains as a permanent mark of the Darkplane’s influence over them. Many attempt to regain a semblance of normal life, hiding the deformity and the abilities it grants. Others throw caution to the wind and embrace the fear their alien features inspire.

All mimessarchs give birth to mimessarchs, though the natural race may prevail until later in the child’s life. Communities have been discovered that span several generations of  born mimessarchs within a single family, from those who have not changed at all to those that are distorted beyond recognition. The deformity of the child nearly always matches that of the parent.

Whether reclusive or bold, mimessarchs are defined by their relationship to the aberrant. Some worship and revere powerful Darkplane entities. Others despise and fight against these forces.

TWISTED IN BODY AND MIND

In many instances, the unnatural metamorphosis of a mimessarch has drastic psychological ramifications, ranging from self-loathing to schizophrenia and other forms of madness. Those who don’t hide from public view by their own choice are often shunned or driven away.

The Darkplane may deform mimessarchs, but it compensates them with flashes of genius. The touch of madness brings an eccentric brilliance that can make a mimessarch a valuable ally. Ironically these moments of genius are interpersed with strange compulsions that can confuse and offend those who associate with the mimessarch. Phobias, addictions, obsessions, and odd speech patterns are the everyday fare of these unfortunate creatures.

Most mimessarchs develop a cynical philosophy. They disbelieve in moral strictures, dismiss religion, and spurn offers of spiritual redemption, particularly those that come from organized groups. Their pursuit of greatness is most often motivated by a desire to conquer, harness, or minimize their aberrant nature. Some do so through disciplined meditation, some through physical training, and others through darker practices.

DEGENERATIVE DEFORMITY

A mimessarch’s appearance depends on two factors: his or her natural race and the type of Darkplane deformity that manifests. Small creatures that become tainted retain their diminutive size, for example.

Even individual cases of the same deformity manifest in different ways, however. Tentacles may be of different colors, and aberrant countenances may have wildly different features. Common to most Darkplane deformities are tuberous extrusions, a slimy mucus coating over the skin, and the presence of anomalous orifices.

When properly disguised, a mimessarch can pass as a normal member of his or her natural race. Such a disguise can be challenging to pull off, especially when the deformity covers large portions of the body or face. At best the mimessarch looks awkward but natural. Many simply make no effort at disguise whatsoever.

STATUS AS A MEANS OF PROTECTION

Shunned and gawked at by others, mimessarchs are forced to distinguish themselves as deserving of respect. Unlike other races that hide their true nature, they don’t necessarily depend on anonymity for survival. Though they do what they can to hide their deformity, mimessarchs are more likely to protect themselves through status. Whatever the method, it’s common for a mimessarch to obsessively seek to prove to the world that he or she is more than a freak. Often this comes in the form of power and station, which deriders won’t be able to argue with.

This isn’t always difficult for mimessarchs to achieve. They have stared the mad cosmos in the face and survived. The experience leaves them with a glimpse of knowledge beyond mortal reach, making them prone to flashes of incredible genius—but likewise taints their mind with spurts of psychosis. The severity of the conditions differ, but many mimessarchs manage to achieve great things despite their disturbing aspect.

HIDDEN COMMUNES

It is rare that a mimessarch assimilates seamlessly into mainstream society. Some seek the sequestered work of a farmer or laborer, others rob and raid for their living. It’s common for mimessarchs to have dealings and connections in underground communities such as organized crime or hidden arcane cabals.

There are households, colonies, even entire villages where mimessarchs gather for refuge. Most are run by a specific family or individual whose bloodline is irreversibly tainted. A few are organized by chapters of Senfaerist monks who are all too familiar with the terrors of the Darkplane threat.

Mimessarch havens range from communal and benevolent to abhorrent and brutal. Most are unsanitary; all can be frightening to the average person. Few of them are appealing to those inexperienced with the aberrant, or bothered by mental illness.

CLIMBING THE LADDER

Because the background of each mimessarch is so unique, they can be found in a variety of roles in the adventuring world. If they haven’t retired from public view, they chase pursuits connected to hierarchy, such as membership in adventurer guilds. Achievement and recognition help them forget the repulsiveness the Darkplane has consigned them to.

MIMESSARCH NAMES

Mimessarchs generally keep their given name. See the examples of names provided in the description of your secondary race.

  Tentacle Mouth  by  Scott Purdy

Tentacle Mouth by Scott Purdy

MIMESSARCH TRAITS

You gain a variety of unique traits stemming from your Darkplane deformity.

Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 1.

Age. The Darkplane infection kills many living things outright, and mimessarchs have been known to die early of biological complications resulting from their deformities. There are also those whose changing bodies remain living far beyond what would be expected of their natural race. It's yours to decide which you are.

Alignment. There isn’t much room in a mimessarch’s life for moral certainty. Having the insight they do into the alien cosmos tends to shake their confidence in virtue or principle. That being so, mimessarchs gravitate toward neutral alignments.

Size. See Natural Heritage below.

Speed. See Natural Heritage below.

Aberration. You are considered an aberration as well as a humanoid. You have advantage when making Intelligence checks related to knowledge of aberrations and the Darkplane.

Horrifying. You have advantage when making Charisma (Intimidation) checks. You can spend an action to intimidate one creature you can see that isn’t an aberration, undead, or construct. If you win a contest between your Charisma (Intimidation) and the creature’s Wisdom it is frightened until the end of its next turn.

Unless you’re wearing a suitable disguise (at your DM’s discretion), you add your proficiency bonus to the DC of any Charisma (Performance) or Charisma (Persuasion) check you make.

Natural Heritage. Choose a race other than mimessarch. You are also considered a member of that race. When determining your name, size, speed, and languages, reference your natural heritage.

Languages. See Natural Heritage.

Darkplane Deformity. Your body has been twisted in a way that enhances your biological capabilities. The deformed area might be easily hidden, such as the back or abdomen, but it might be in a glaring place like the face. Decide with your DM which one of the following deformities you have and where it is. Three of the options are presented here.

Additional Eyes

You have extra eyes bubbling from irregularly located orifices. There might be one extra eye or thirty—either way they grant you heightened perception, including the ability to see in absolute dark.

Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 2.

All Eyes. You have advantage when making Wisdom (Perception) checks, and you cannot be surprised.

Perfect Darkvision. Your aberrant eyes allow you to see better in complete darkness. You can see in darkness and dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light. You can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of grey.

Sensory Spindles

Your body is covered in six-inch, fibrous spindles. They might extend from your hands, arms, legs, face, or other body parts. When the spindles touch a surface, they can read vibrations to give you a clear idea of other moving objects that touch the same surface. If you’re in water, this means you can sense other creatures in the water. If underground, you can sense vibrations in the stone that tell you what other creatures might lurk about.

Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 2.

Tremorsense. You can see creatures and objects within 20 feet, even if they are invisible, hidden, obscured, or otherwise out of sight. Both you and the creature or object must be in contact with the ground or another substance (a wall, line, web, water, etc.).

Tentacles

You have one or more tentacles, up to 4 feet in length, that sprout from anywhere on your body—perhaps your arms, legs, or abdomen. Their coordination is somewhat limited, but they make you very fast in water. They can be used to apply force to objects, but cannot hold items.

Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 2.

Cephalopod. While swimming, your speed increases to 50 feet. Your unarmed attack deals 1d4 bludgeoning damage, and creatures grappled by your tentacles have disadvantage on saving throws to escape.

New Race: Daemon

DAEMON

Daemons are the human embodiments of demonic spirits from an ancient empire, sent to the material world of Vinramar as agents of Daemoth. Each is born to a human mother by entering the womb, driving out the spirit of the true child and taking its place. When daemons first enter the mortal body, the memory of their former life is lost, and only regained through disciplined meditation. Many forge a new path as they mature, consciously or unconsciously shirking their original purpose.

With practice, daemons can enter a powerful state that hearkens back to their ancient glory. In this elder form their presence becomes commanding, and they glow with an unholy light. Daemons who remain in human guise, on the other hand, avoid the risk of others attempting to discover their true names (and thus control them).

The intent of this charade is to keep a strict eye on world affairs without the daemon’s presence being sensed as a threat. As opposed to the jharethil, who hide out of necessity, the daemons hide in human form because it suits their purpose, evil or otherwise.

A FATEFUL CHOICE

Sometime before a daemon’s fifth birthday, he or she is contacted in secret by a herald of Daemoth, usually a demonic being set to protect and preside over the child. In this first visitation, the dark herald reveals to the child that it is a daemon, and speaks its true name.

If daemons accept the tutelage of their dark herald, they are trained physically and spiritually to serve Daemoth. Many are drawn to religious devotion, becoming leaders within one of the Daemothite religious sects. Others might train for political or academic careers, where their influence will have greatest reach. Whatever their specific mission, daemons who comply with the instruction of the dark herald are prepared for life as an agent of Daemoth.

This decision is life-changing. If a daemon accepts, the herald will return now and then, or routinely take the child away for training. Some parents are distressed by the mysterious coming and going—others are proud to have borne a child of Daemoth.
Many daemons don’t comply with their intended masters, even at such a young age. A refusal to submit to God’s will is taken as rebellion, and daemons that reject their tutelage make bitter enemies of the dark powers. After such a choice, a daemon dissenter might settle down in hopes of being forgotten, or be forced to keep on the move.

THE WEAPON OF ANONYMITY

Daemons live in any human society, hidden among the population as agents of the dark powers. Those that rebel against Daemoth might seek shelter and redemption among religious communities that worship Jharus. In almost all circumstances, daemons manage to operate alone or with a very small group of trusted allies.

The ability to seem human can hide a daemon’s identity, allegiance, and motives. Most leave their true race a closely guarded secret, and keep careful record of who knows it. They will only use the elder form when a situation is desperate. Daemons value their anonymity as one of their greatest advantages, and a means to access resources and connections that might otherwise be unavailable.

HIDDEN DEMONIC GLORY

When in human form, daemons look like their human parents just as any other child would. No sign can distinguish them from humans except an unholy birthmark on the crown of the head, which appears around age three. The birthmark is shaped to form a seal or insignia of the daemon’s dark herald. Many keep this proof of their true race hidden beneath long hair.

All daemons can learn to change their human body into the elder form. While transformed, their bodies closely resemble the human form, but their skin and eyes change to a deathly, glowing white, and their facial features become sharper and more imperious.

DAEMONS AND RELIGION

Daemons give up the right to religious neutrality at birth. The deal is to serve Daemoth or be hunted by him. Those faced with this predicament may hate religion or be steeped in it, but either way they’ll find it difficult to be ambivalent. Zealotry and single-minded devotion to Daemoth are common among his children. Those who rebel gravitate toward spiritual disillusionment and bitter cynicism.

CALCULATING EVERY MOVE

Many daemons have a talent for strategy and analytical thinking, perhaps a byproduct of their eternal war on the jharethil. This almost mathematical ability to anticipate the actions of others manifests at a young age, resulting in a tendency to make complex plans based on such predictions. Daemons value their intelligence above all else.

In addition to their shrewd minds, daemons often have good manners. They’re fond of formality and tradition, using social ceremony to keep others at a distance. The risk of detection causes them to avoid creating strong ties with others.

Depending on their loyalties, daemons might espouse a variety of beliefs or priorities. Those that embrace their heritage find that doors open for them everywhere they turn. The others are hounded until the day they die by servants of their intended master, especially if they join the enemy and aid Jharus’s cause.

THE BEST OR NOTHING

Religious or otherwise, daemons are ambitious adventurers. They set their sights high, seeking the best training available in their field. Some channel their divine gifts into powerful religious magic, while others abandon the path of divinity altogether in favor of arcane secrets. No matter the path, they have the instinct of centuries and the unconscious experience of multiple lives at their beck.

DAEMON NAMES

The humans that raise a daemon will use their own naming conventions, but the child also learns its true name at the first visitation of the dark herald. As with other fiends, knowledge of a daemon’s true name can grant significant power over him or her. Though the human body acts a shield against summoning, those who speak a daemon’s true name can easily influence him or her. These true names each have a life and history, often connected to Mohtra and the long-past civilization of the elder daemons.

DAEMON TRAITS

In connection with your demonic origin, you have the following racial traits.

Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 2.

Age. Daemons age like humans, since their biology is virtually unchanged. Whatever their age, most daemons seem wiser than their years.

Alignment. Because they don’t remember their true history, daemons of every alignment can be found throughout Vinramar, even those that use their otherworldly powers for noble causes. Of course, the lure of supernatural power is strong enough to pull most of them inevitably toward their intended destiny, but the five formative years before the dark herald’s appearance can make all the difference.

Size. Medium.

Speed. 30 feet.

Demonic Changeling. You are considered a fiend (demon) as well as a human. If a creature speaks your true name, you must succeed on a Charisma saving throw with a DC equal to the creature’s Charisma score or be charmed by it as long as it remains in your sight. You can repeat the saving throw at the end of each minute. Once you succeed on a saving throw of this kind, the creature who spoke your true name cannot charm you this way for 24 hours.

Elder Form. You can use an action to polymorph into the elder form or return to your human form. While in elder form, you have advantage on Strength checks, and your body sheds bright light in a 10-foot radius and dim light for an additional 10 feet.

While in elder form you can use an action to incapacitate an enemy you touch. Make a melee spell attack against the creature. On a success, the creature is incapacitated until the end of its next turn. Your spellcasting ability for this attack is Charisma.

Those who see you in elder form can identify you as a daemon with an Intelligence (Religion) or Intelligence (History) check of DC 10. Daemons and characters with proficiency in History or Religion pass this check automatically. If you become unconscious while in elder form, you remain in elder form until you can spend an action to return to human form.

Stone Will. You have proficiency with Wisdom saving throws.

Languages. You can speak, read, and write one regional tongue and one extra language of your choice. Daemons speak the languages of their human parents. If they accept the tutelage of the dark herald, their second language is often Zhoroch, spoken by demons and the inhabitants of the ancient daemon empire.

Allegiance. Your reaction to the discovery that you are a daemon changed your life forever. Choose whether you became a herald’s pupil or went into hiding as a daemon dissenter.

DAEMON DISSENTER

At age five, you rejected the dark herald and chose to forge your own path. This choice put you and your family in great danger throughout your life, but you’ve developed the talents to survive it.

Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 1.

Watchful Eye. You have proficiency in the Insight skill.

HERALD’S PUPIL

By accepting the tutelage from the dark herald, these daemon’s accessed the training and culture of the ancient daemon civilization. Perhaps they still serve daemoth, or perhaps they dissented after their training was complete.

Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 1.

Religious Lore. You have proficiency in the Religion skill.