Tanar’ri, Greater — Kah’Lesar
Tanar’ri, Greater — Kah’Lesar

Tanar’ri, Greater — Kah’Lesar

Kah’Lesar Tanar’ri

CLIMATE/TERRAIN:Abyss, Lower Planes, Prime
ALIGNMENT:Chaotic Evil
MOVEMENT:14, Fly 15 (B)
HIT DICE:9 + 6
DAMAGE/ATTACK:1d8+2 / 1d8+2 / 2d4
SPECIAL ATTACKS:Bleeding, innate spells, poison
SPECIAL DEFENCES:Pain absorption
SIZE:L (9′ tall)
MORALE:Champion (16)
XP VALUE:14,000
AD&D 2e statistics

“I heard o’ a Kah’Lesar once, the berk kept on rattling his bone-box on how the tanar’ri were just about to take over Baator. I saw the berk tell a pit fiend that. Poor sod’s in the dead book now.”

— Krainius Talfar, tiefling mercenary

Obsessed with pain, inflicting it and receiving it, the Kah’Lesar are probably one of the most dangerous tanar’ri in a toe to toe fight. They have no regard for their own bodies, flinging themselves into combat with abandon.

Kah’Lesar appear as large humanoids, covered in thick, rubbery, red-black skin. Hideous scars cover their bodies and open wounds ooze out thick, gummy blood that gives them a sickening sheen. Kah’Lesar use only a scythe-like sword as a weapon, and they seem to display an almost symbiotic link to it, prompting some graybeards to suggest the scythe is actually a part of the creature rather than a weapon. This may well be so, for a Kah’Lesar has never been spotted without its weapon, dripping almost constantly with some kind of blood. Their teeth are pointed and many, often too large for their mouths, forcing their mouths to jut open and giving them a gruesome appearance.

Kah’Lesar are usually the leaders of Blood War diversionary units, they’re renowned (more so than your average tanar’ri) for attacking baatezu on sight. Unlike many tanar’ri, Kah’Lesar are not immune to electricity, they suffer half damage from it. They can communicate by telepathy.

COMBAT: These tanar’ri love combat more than anything else. They attack anything and everything unless a smarter or more powerful tanar’ri commands them not to. And sometimes they don’t even listen to those orders. They recklessly throw themselves at opponents, no matter how dangerous.

Kah’Lesar can strike with their scythes for 1d8+2 damage twice a round, and with their pincers that do 2d4 damage. A creature bitten must make a save vs. paralysation or bleed for 1d6 damage per round until the wound is bound. If a Kah’Lesar inflicts more than 30 points of damage in a single round, it flies into a blood rage, doubling the number of scythe attacks it can make per round. Worryingly, with every successful scythe strike, a Kah’Lesar gains 2 hit points.

Weapons that aren’t holy, baatezu-, or yugoloth-forged have an unusual effect on Kah’Lesar. Instead of causing the tanar’ri damage, the Kah’Lesar are actually healed of the same number of points of damage the wound should have inflicted. There must be something about the force of hatred behind an attack these creatures can feed from, for only attacks intended to kill the Kah’Lesar have this effect. In addition, weapons of +1 or greater enchantment, even those forged by the aforementioned races, have no effect on the Kah’Lesar.

The bane of all Kah’Lesar are healing spells. All spells that would normally heal the target act as a reversed form of the spell (ie. a cure light wounds would become a cause light wounds). Damaging spells are also reversed, if possible (ie. a harm would become a heal, but a fireball would still deal normal damage). In addition to those abilities common to all tanar’ri, Kah’Lesar have the following spell-like powers: cause light woundscause serious woundscause severe woundsharm (5 times per day), detect gooddetect invisibility, and detect magic. They can also attempt to gate in 1d4 other Kah’Lesar tanar’ri once per hour with a 40% chance of success.

HABITAT/SOCIETY: Kah’Lesar are often used to cause heavy damage in combat. They can inflict heavy casualties before they fall. They are often kept in isolated pens until battle, because they would attack their fellows if they were allowed to go free.

Occasionally, a slightly more self-controlled Kah’Lesar will be the leader of small groups of tanar’ri troops in the Blood War; in fact, anything considered a suicide mission by the tanar’ri high-ups is led by a Kah’Lesar. Strangely, perhaps, the Kah’Lesar don’t seem to mind. Their hatred of baatezu is almost holy—as much as the word “holy” can be applied to the foul tanar’ri—in fact, it is rumoured by some members of the race that the Blood War started because of a Kah’Lesar.

Nobody really knows how these hideous creatures came into being, but chant goes it was an unnatural and terrible magical experiment conducted by a twisted Abyssal Lord or three. If their purpose was to find a new weapon to use against anything living, they certainly succeeded. Now, Kah’Lesar are usually created when a bar-lgura is promoted for exceptional service. Known for their stupidity, bar-lgura consider this a great honour—high-up tanar’ri know the promotion’s basically a death warrant, and a short one at that. But for those brief few days, the Kah’Lesar will be highly respected by his fellow tanar’ri. Well, as much as a bloodsucking beast of pure evil can show respect, at least…

Kah’Lesar are usually the first to die in a Blood War, because of the reckless abandon that they throw themselves at their enemies. They usually take with them a swathe of baatezu troops; the tanar’ri berserkers are well feared by the lawful fiends, who call them “Ravagers”.

ECOLOGY: Kah’Lesar care for nothing other than hurting and being hurt. They do not seem to understand anything else. The Blood War is only an easy way to cause harm to them. They usually don’t live more than a few weeks in tanar’ri society, therefore their impact upon the Abyssal ecology as a whole is small. They are carnivores, and they can also eat teeth. No one knows why teeth are a delicacy to Kah’Lesar, but they are. Chalk it up to a mystery of the planes, eh?

Source: John Kastronis, Gothenem and Jon Winter, artwork inspired by Michael Corriero. Submitted as Tanar’ri, Greater – Grind, and Tanar’ri, Greater – Masochistic and combined in an unholy brew by Jon.

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