Child, Ash
Child, Ash

Child, Ash

Ash Child

NO. OF ATTACKS:1 (bite)
SPECIAL ATTACKS:Poisonous bite, suffocation
SIZE:S (4 feet tall)
MORALE:Steady (11)
AD&D 2e statistics

“Heh. Look at those little guys. Do you want to play? Do you want a penny? It’s shiny, isn’t it? I bet you’ve never seen a copper piece before, living so far away from anything earthy… hey! Leggo! One at a time! Stop that! SLOW DOWN! BACK OFF! No more… AAAAHHRGgg…”

—Finn Mallow

Ash children are slim, almost skeletal, childlike beings wearing overcoats and tall hats. They carry large, stiff brushes useful for dusting each other off. They have large eyes the same uniform gray as their skin and enormous pointed ears like a gremlin has.

COMBAT: Ash children cling to their opponents, attempting to overbear them with surprise and numbers. Their bite is mildly poisonous, causing itching and occasional vomiting for a week or so unless cured (-2 to attack), but their most feared attack is suffocation. On a successful natural roll of 20, an ash child sticks its ashy hand or tongue into the mouth of its victim, cutting off all breathing (assuming the victim needed to). A strength check at -2 is required to pull the little pest out, at which point up to eight other children will all be competing to see who rolls a twenty next.

HABITAT/SOCIETY: Ash children congregate in schools, and are often found around ash witches, although if none is available they will associate with even a mephit. Like the witches, they communicate in whispers, inventing rhymes and rhythmic patterns as they chatter excitedly at one another. They attack if ordered to, in self-defense, or if panicked by bright light.

ECOLOGY: Ash children are thought to be related to brownies, kilmouli, and other hearth spirits occasionally found on this plane. It’s possible they were created by the same hag who first shaped the ash witches, but they’re now manufactured by the witches themselves. The evidence is that after a century or so, the children grow into adult ash witches, and go off alone, never again to talk with its former siblings.

VARIANTS: Ash children could, with the DM’s permission, be used as a PC race…


LANGUAGES: A well-educated ash child might know planar common, ash quasielemental, or night hag. The far-traveled might know the language of the genies.

ROLE-PLAYING SUGGESTONS: An adventuring ash child has likely had its witch abandon or try to eat it, and it knows that another witch won’t accept it after that. If alone, it will be very lonely and likely to attatch to virtually anything friendly that comes by. It will initially expect its companions to help it overbear its enemies, and thus might easily get over its head in danger. Ash children like to touch and hug, and don’t understand what anyone would have against soot stains. They are extremely loyal to their friends.

SPECIAL ADVANTAGES: A wandering ash child retains its poisonous bite and suffocation ability. It is immune to the effects of the plane of Ash and to non-magical cold. It has a natural armor class of five, which is not cumulative with armor. If it takes up the way of the pick and crowbar, its skills are adjusted as follows: Move silently +10%, Hide in Shadows +35%, Open Locks -5%, Find/Remove Traps -5% (ashy fingers just aren’t built for it, eyes aren’t sensitive enough), Detect Noise -5% (soot in their ears), Climb Walls +5%, Read Languages -15%, Pick Pockets -5%.

SPECIAL DISADVANTAGES: An ash child must be fed approximately thirteen pounds of ashes every day. While they don’t leave a literal trail of ashes, they have great difficulty keeping things clean. It’s difficult to fit armor for. It is not immune to the wasting effects of the Gray Waste. Fire causes it double damage, and it loses 2 points of strength for every ten degrees Fahrenheit above 60. When its Strength score reaches 0, it falls into a coma.

When wet, an ash child gets sticky. Removing a wet ash child from whatever it was clinging to requires a bend bars/lift gates roll with a + 20% bonus.

MONSTROUS TRAITS: Small, gray, no pupils, big ears, speaks in whispers, tends to leave soot marks on things.

SUPERSTITIONS: Ash children believe they’re dying when they overheat, and they will never harm an ash witch. Bright lights spook them, but cause no other hindrance.

WEAPON PROFICIENCIES: Ash children prefer small weapons, and pokers. Their brushes aren’t weapons, and will be found hanging around their necks when not in use.

NON-WEAPON PROFICIENCIES: Survival (Ash), Blindfighting, hunting, set snares, tracking, tumbling, jumping, gaming, dancing, and painting are common skills.

ABILITY REQUIREMENTS: (before ability adjustments are added or subtracted):






(* Divided into male/female values. Heights are in inches, weights are in pounds.)



(* Upon attaining this age, the ash child curls up into a little ball and goes to sleep. After 6+1d4 months it emerges as a full-grown ash witch, after which it may or not be a NPC, DM’s discretion.)





Source: Rip van Wormer

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