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Hivemother, Ix'gravyd

She appears as a normal woman, save for the bloated pregnancy she bears. She smiles at you as her skin crawls with insects just beneath the surface.

CR 11

XP 12,800

NE Medium aberration (evil, extraplanar)

Init +6; Senses darkvision 60 ft., see in darkness; Perception +23

Defense

AC 20, touch 20, flat-footed 20 (+10 deflection)

hp 88 (16d8+16)

Fort +8, Ref +7, Will +18

Defensive Abilities dimensional distortion: miss chance 25% (at half hp 50% and at ¼ hp 75%)

Offense

Speed 20 ft. fly 30 (clumsy) cannot use force abilities while flying.

Melee kitchen knife +12 (1d3)

Special Attacks absorb swarm, breath weapon, force burst, thought rend

Spell-Like Abilities (CL 16th Bard)

At will—locate creature, magic missile, modify memory (DC 22), telekinesis (as combat maneuver or violent thrust only, CMB +22 to bullrush, disarm, grapple (including pin) or trip, requires concentration to maintain, or move up to 15 targets weighing no more than 375lbs total, Will save DC 23 to resist).

1/day—dominate person (DC 22, last for 8 days, but can only have six targets dominated at one time), mislead, planeshift (if six swarms absorbed), wall of force

constant – detect scrying, detect chaos, detect evil, detect good, detect law, detect thoughts, see invisibility

Statistics

Str 10, Dex 11, Con 12, Int 22, Wis 23, Cha 23

Base Atk +12; CMB +12 ; CMD 22

Feats Alertness, Deceitful, Great Fortitude, Improved Great Fortitude, Iron Will, Magical Aptitude, Persuasive, Quicken Spell-like ability (magic missile 3/day)

Skills Appraise +16, Bluff +20, Diplomacy +20, Disguise +20 (+30 with consume form), Fly +19, Heal +16, Intimidate +23, Knowledge (nature) +19, Knowledge (planes) +11, Linguistics +11, Perception +23, Perform +16, Sense Motive +20, Spellcraft +23, Stealth +13, Survival +19, Use Magic Device +20

Languages Aklo, Common, Dwarven, Elven, Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Gnoll, Halfling, Orc, Undercommon; telepathy 100 ft.

Ecology The hivemother is the top of the ix'gravyd food chain. She is the one in charge and she determines the actions of the hive. A hivemother can bring herself to the prime material plane whenever she needs to replenish her hive. Typically after a battle with adventures or with other hives out in the astral. Should a hivemother die while a female ix'gravyd is still in utero then that creature will grow up being raised by the humanoids that birthed her. Female ix'gravyds are rare though, only accounting for 25% of the bug babies born. The creature will grow up rapidly within a few years, but thanks to its charm abilities most will take no notice. If two or more are being raised in the same area they will try to kill one another as subtly as possible. Using their budding mind control abilities to turn townsfolk against one another until only one survives. Once the remaining hivemother is able to survive on her own she releases the only baby bug swarm she can ever create on her own in the area she has been raised in. Once the hivemother has absorbed the requisite six swarms she immediately flees to the astral to begin creating her own personal hive and wage war against her own kind.

A hivemother on the astral plane quickly establishes a territory as her own. Using astral stuff she builds her hive which resembles a bee hive from the inside. Open so the hivemother can see everywhere. On the astral baby bug swarms and bug babies live as long as the hivemother does and only for a year after she leaves. A hive mother can live for hundreds of years and only enters the prime on an average of once per century. If a hivemother dies the hive eventually dies with her, though an enterprising hivemother can take over a hive that has lost connection with hivemother after six months. This alone is why hivemothers tend to be quick about their time on the prime material.

Hivemothers wage war on one another for the sake of power and instinct. They cannot bear the presence of each other unleashing their hives and any astral travelers they dominate on any hivemothers they locate. Once a hivemother is defeated the other lays claim to the losers hive, both location and members. Since the hives are made of astral stuff they can be moved around through great act of will. Legends tell of massive hives catering to hivemothers so powerful they've enslaved others of their kind instead of merely destroying them.

Environment astral or any humanoid civilization

Organization hive (hivemother, 1-6 ix'gravyd, 2-8 baby bug swarms)

Treasure standard

Special Abilities

Absorb Swarm (Ex) As a standard action which provokes an attack of opportunity a hivemother may absorb a baby bug swarm though her open mouth. This act is unaffected by dimensional distortion. The swarm is contained in her pregnant looking belly and once she has absorbed 6 swarms she immediately activates her planeshift ability, which returns her, any remaining baby bug swarms and born ix'gravyds to her lair on the astral plane.

Breath Weapon (Ex) In an act of mad desperation a hivemother can release a swarm inside her as a standard action. In this form the baby bugs are spread over a 20' cone. The force of the release deals 8d6 slashing, piercing and bludgeoning damage to all in the area. Reflex save DC 19 for half. Anyone damaged by this breath weapon must also make a Fortitude save DC 19 from the concentrated baby bug poison or become nauseated for one round. Finally, the force of the breath weapon is such that it kills all the baby bugs released. This act causes them to screech as they die and anyone within a 30' radius from the center of the cone must make a Will save DC 17 (from the baby bugs screech ability) or suffer the effects of Crushing Despair for one minute. A hivemother can only use this ability while at half or less hp. If she does it a second time in the same day she takes 4 points of constitution damage per use (which typically kills her in the process). The Fortitude and Reflex saves are Constitution based. The Will save is based off of the baby bug swarms screech ability.

Consume Form (Su) When a hivemother enters the prime material plane she seeks out the closest pregnant woman (using locate creature) and murders her. Once this foul act is done the hivemother devours the remains thus allowing her to alter her form to look exactly like the slain mother to be. She also gains much of what the woman knew in life. The hivemother has no access to feats, skills or spells the woman had in life, but she can pass herself off as the woman with little difficulty. This, in effect, gives her a +10 circumstance bonus to disguising herself as the consumed victim.

Dimensional Distortion (Su) While on the prime material plane the hivemother is only partially real. This grants her a 25% miss chance against non-force effects and weapon damage, but the same applies against her non-force attacks and weapon damage. This dimensional distortion has no effect on mind affecting abilities. Neither her own or any used against her. As she gets hurt though her distortion increases. It becomes 50% at half or less hp and 75% at ¼ or less hp. A dimensional anchor spell stops this ability so long as it hits (the ranged touch attack for the spell is not affected by the miss chance).

Force Burst (Su) As a standard action a hivemother can unleash a brutal burst of force in a 30' radius around her. Anyone caught in this burst is subjected to a bullrush with a CMB of +22 and takes 5d4+5 as if struck by five magic missiles. A shield spell stops this damage, but not the bullrush effect. If a hivemother does this she loses access to magic missile, telekinesis, and wall force for one full round. During this time she cannot fly nor can she activate another force burst. The hivemothers deflection bonus to AC is reduced by 6 for one round as well.

Planeshift (Su) On the astral plane a hivemother may only bring one swarm with her to the prime material. On the prime she cannot use planeshift until she has absorbed six swarms. Once she has done so her planeshift ability triggers sending the hivemother along with all remaining swarms and born bug babies. If she is under the effects of a dimensional anchor spell when she absorbs the sixth swarm then the effect is delayed until to dimensional anchor or any other effect that stops dimensional travel ends.

Thought Rend (Su) If anyone fails their Will save against a hivemothers detect thoughts ability then she may perform a thought rend on them as a standard action. The target must be within her telepathy range and she must have line of sight to them. She can also perform a thought rend on anyone she detects scrying on her, though they will get a +4 to their saving throw to resist. A thought rend drags a victims knowledge, emotions and personality into the hivemothers head. The act of doing so deals 1d6 Intelligence, Wisdom or Charisma damage with a Will save DC 24 to resist. Each time a target fails their save then they are staggered for one round and the hivemother may continue to thought rend that target each round as a swift action instead, but may not use thought rend on another target unless they end the current thought rend. Once a target makes their saving throw or one of their mental ability scores is reduced to zero the thought rend ends. If a protection from evil or any other spell that stops mind affecting is applied to the target then the effect ends immediately. Anyone under the effects of any of those spells is also immune to thought rend. If someone has an ability score reduced to zero in this way then they fall unconscious until at least 1 point is restored. A hivemother gains intimate knowledge of a target during a thought rend, but those that survive also gain knowledge of the hivemother, but usually in the form of the number of times she's entered the prime material plane, why she came and how close she is to leaving.

Vulnerabilities: Seeing dead bug babies that are their own can put them into a rage. Anyone who is cursed via a bug baby's death cry will be targeted above all others. If banishment is cast on a hivemother then each bug baby corpse presented to her increases the DC by 2. Any spell that sends her back to the astral has to overcome her miss chance from dimensional distortion in reverse (75% chance of failure, 50% if her hp is at half or less and 25% failure if her hp is at ¼ or less). This has the added effect of killing the hivemother in addition to sending her home. It also returns all her bug babies and baby bug swarms with her and there is no chance of a new hivemother being born out of any bug babies that are still in utero.