I’m following up last week’s bat with a dragon. OK, it’s actually a linnorm, but linnorms are dragons in Pathfinder, so that’s what I’m going with. The verminnorm was inspired by this bit of taxidermy, which my friend, Craig, generously pointed out to me. You can see it here in all its glory.
I hope you enjoy the verminnorm. I’ll see you again with another, less terrible-taxidermy-inspired, monster.
Fumes emanate from the oily smoke breathed by this many-legged, serpentine rat.
Verminnorm CR 8
NE Small dragon
Init +9; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent, true seeing; Perception +14
AC 21, touch 17, flat-footed 15 (+5 Dex, +1 dodge, +4 natural, +1 size)
hp 94 (9d12+36)
Fort +10, Ref +11, Will +9
Defensive Abilities evasion, freedom of movement; DR 10/cold iron; Immune curse effects, disease, mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poison, sleep; SR 19
Speed 30 ft., burrow 20 ft., climb 30 ft., fly 60 ft. (average)
Melee bite +15 (1d8+2 plus bleed, disease, and poison), 4 claws +15 (1d6+2)
Special Attacks bleed (1d6), breath weapon, death curse, rend (2 claws, 1d6+3)
Str 14, Dex 21, Con 19, Int 3, Wis 16, Cha 18
Base Atk +9; CMB +10; CMD 26 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Dodge, Improved Initiative, Mobility, Spring Attack, Weapon Finesse
Skills Climb +14, Fly +13, Perception +14, Stealth +18
Languages Draconic, Undercommon
Environment any land (typically in linnorm lairs, urban, or underground)
Breath Weapon (Su) Once every 1d4 rounds as a standard action, the verminnorm can expel a 30-foot cone of noxious smoke. All creatures in the area take 6d6 acid damage, become nauseated for 1 round and blinded for 1d6 rounds. A successful DC 18 Reflex save halves the damage and negates the nauseated and blinded conditions. The save DC is Constitution-based.
The cloud lingers until the end of the verminnorm’s next turn, creating an effect similar to fog cloud but otherwise harmless. The verminnorm can see through the cloud created by its breath weapon.
Death Curse (Su) When a creature slays a verminnorm, the slayer is affected by the curse of pestilence.
Curse of Pestilence: save Will DC 18; effect the creature incurs a –4 penalty on saving throws against disease, and any other creature that touches the infected creature must make a saving throw as if exposed to the disease (at the disease’s original save DC). The curse’s save DC is Charisma-based.
Filth Fever (Ex) Bite—injury; save Fort DC 18; onset 1d3 days; frequency 1/day; effect 1d3 Dex damage and 1d3 Con damage; cure 2 consecutive saves. The save DC is Constitution-based.
Poison (Ex) Bite—injury; save Fort DC 18; frequency 1/round for 6 rounds; effect 1d6 acid damage and sickened for 1 round; cure 2 consecutive saves. The save DC is Constitution-based.
Verminnorms are least linnorms that have a similar relationship to more powerful linnorms as feral rats have to humanoids. They feed off the scraps of meals left behind by the lair’s owners and often dare to scuttle away with a shiny bauble or two, which they secret away in nooks only they can reach. Verminnorms develop a symbiotic relationship with linnorms and serve as a first line of defense against those seeking to hunt linnorms directly in their lairs.
In urban and underground areas, verminnorms rarely establish relationships with more powerful creatures. Initially, they provide an incidental service in populated areas by preying on other scavenging creatures. As their food sources become depleted, they grow bolder and raid homes for food and shiny treasures.
Verminnorms are extremely violent against other verminnorms and attack their kin in preference to other foes. Given this anti-social behavior, scholars are baffled as to how verminnorms reproduce, with some scholars speculating that the creatures result from linnorms affected by other linnorms’ death curses.
A typical verminnorm measures 5 feet in length, standing only 3 feet from the ground, and weighs 150 pounds.
VERMINNORM CREATURE 8
Uncommon NE Small Dragon
Perception +16; darkvision, scent (imprecise) 60 feet, true seeing
Languages Draconic, Undercommon
Skills Acrobatics +16, Athletics +12, Stealth +18
Str +2, Dex +6, Con +5, Int –4, Wis +4, Cha +4
AC 28; Fort +16, Ref +18, Will +12; +1 status to all saves vs magic
HP 145, regeneration 5 (deactivated by cold iron); Immunities curse, disease, paralyzed, sleep; Weaknesses cold iron 5
Curse of Pestilence (curse, primal) When a creature slays a verminnorm, it must succeed at a DC 27 Will save or permanently gain a –2 status penalty on saving throws against disease. Additionally, any creature that touches the cursed creature while it is suffering from disease must succeed at the disease’s save DC or become afflicted with the disease.
Speed 25 feet, fly 60 feet, climb 20 feet; freedom of movement
Melee [one-action] jaws +21 (magical), Damage 3d6+11 piercing plus filth fever and verminnorm venom
Melee [one-action] claw +21 (finesse, magical), Damage 2d6+11 slashing
Rend [one-action] claw
Primal Innate Spells DC 23; Constant (6th) true seeing; (4th) freedom of movement
Breath Weapon [two-actions] (acid, evocation, poison, primal) The verminnorm can expel a 30-foot cone of noxious smoke, dealing 9d6 acid damage to creatures within the area (DC 26 basic Reflex save). On a critical failure, a creature becomes sickened 2 for 1 round and blinded for 1 minute. The verminnorm can’t use Breath Weapon again for 1d4 rounds.
Filth Fever (disease, injury) The sickened and unconscious conditions from filth fever don’t improve on their own until the disease is cured. Saving Throw DC 26 Fortitude; State 1 carrier with no ill effect (1d4 hours), Stage 2 sickened 1 (1 day), Stage 3 sickened 1 and slowed 1 (1 day), Stage 4 unconscious, Stage 5 dead
Verminnorm Venom (injury, poison) Saving Throw DC 26 Fortitude; Maximum Duration 6 rounds; Stage 1 3d6 acid damage and drained 1; Stage 2 5d6 acid damage and drained 2.