Some time ago, the Shadow Council accquired a tome filled with various rituals – some relatively trivial in nature, while others vastly powerful. So far, the campaign has seen the effect of one such ritual and known the possible outcome of a few others. Anthrax has already been brought back to life by the hands of the Shadow Council after having been the target of a life warding ritual. Melchar is still under the effect of such a ritual, and will be resurrected at their HQ if he dies. A high ranking priest of the Shadow Council was also interrupted once by Fook Yui, Ottamata Sawasumida and Arazaka Hara trying to raise an army of the dead in Himmelbyen. And the awakening of a demonic deity was also stopped by the hands of our traveling adventurers.

What makes this tome so powerful, is the fact that these rituals can be performed by practically anyone. There is no divine or arcane magic involved – just the rituals themselves (Fook Yui came across a mention of this tome many years ago in Himmelbyen, btw – then it was believed to be lost somewhere in the catacombs below the city). And now, the Shadow Council has deciphered yet another ritual – the ritual of the Shadow Guardian.

The Shadow Guardian

Size: Medium
AC: 20
Movement: 24, flying 24 (B)
HD: varies, but minimum 10 HD (a static 8hp value pr. HD)
Hit: as HD
# attacks: 2 (control living + 1 other)
Dmg: Special
Morale: Elite (15-16)
Alignment: Lawful Evil
Intelligence: 10-15
Magic Resistance: 80%
Hide in Shadows: 95%
Move Silently: 95%
Xp: 25.000 for surviving encounter, 50.000 for killing a Shadow Guardian

Special Abilities:

All special abilities can be used while the Shadow Guardian is Immaterial, but only one specail attack can be used in that state – Control the Living

Ethreal – 50% miss chance on all attacks and spells. Can walk through any solid or fluid.
Immunity – Can only be hurt by wooden, non magical weapons (including improvised weapons such as chairs etc.) or ethereal weapons.
Lifedrain – Every level gained from draining lasts 1 hour.
Immaterial – Standard starting state of a Shadow Guardian is as a 10 HD monster with no means to be detected/attacked (or even attack itself). Only after draining its first level, can it be attacked (and attack). It can still Control the Living at 10 HD, but not Heartfreeze or Shadowstep.
Unliving – Not living, not undead – cannot be controlled (unless under contract)
Shadowstep – Teleport to any shadow within sight at will. Range 30m.
Aura of Dimensional Anchor – once a day. Prevents magical transportation in and out of the area.
Wall of Force – once a day
Return Home – teleport home once a day
Telepathic link – A Shadow Guardian cannot communicate in any way with anyone, except with its master with whom it shares a telepathic link with no range limit.
Steal Thoughts – Cast time 1 hour. Save vs spell (wis bonus to saving throws applies), learn everything the victim has learned the last 24 hours.
Anchor – Attaches itself to an individual, stays with him always, even if the target teleports away. Cast time 1 hour, no save.

Special Attacks:

Control the Living – magic resistance applies, save vs spell or fall into a deep sleep. This is a passive ability, so the Shadow guardian can perform other attacks/actions while controlling a living.
Lifedrain – magic resistance applies, drain 1 level each round by touch. The Shadow Guardian gains one HD pr. lvl drained (up to a maximum of becoming a 50 HD monster – it can drain more levels after that, but will not gain any) If a living individual is drained to 0 HD/lvl, you die. If the life draining process is stopped before, you regain 1 lvl every day.
Heartfreeze – Grabs your heart (-8 to hit, but armor is negated) and squeezes it with its cold, shadowy touch (cold resistance does not apply, this is a cosmetic description). deals 10% of your maximum hp (ie. if you start at max hp, it takes 10 hits before you die). also slows you (as the spell) for 1 round.

Last notes: A Shadow Guardian can only affect the living. Non of his abilities or attacks will work against something unliving or dead/undead. If you manage to defeat a Shadow Guardian, it will transform back into the man it once were while a gate to Hell opens up and sucks him into it. It would not be adviceable to stand too close to the gate when this happens. Also there is one way to reveal the presence of a Shadow Guardian, and one way to force a Shadow Guardian to materialize itself. Anthrax has been told how to by the Shadow Council, which he is now a part of.

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