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ID: 2050


December 17, 2005, 1:00 am

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Crawling Ghosts


The Crawling Ghosts (from Parsic “yabuj”, “it crawls”) are the loathsome, disturbing ghosts of those who die lonely and rejected, shut-ins and the forgotten.

Crawling Ghosts (Yabuj, Brown Ghost, Lonely Beetle)

The Crawling Ghosts (from Parsic “yabuj”, “it crawls”) are the loathsome, disturbing ghosts of those who die lonely and rejected, shut-ins and the forgotten. Scuttling in the places where the lone dead once inhabited, the animal soul takes on the form of a huge brown insect, a cockroach or hornless beetle, as long as a man’s body and as wide as a platter, endlessly lonely and full of sadness. They are chained to the places where, in their former lives, they once frequented- Crawling Ghosts often scuttle about a single room or tiny cell. Crawling Ghosts seek out living ones to ease their loneliness, but seem unaware of how much horror and fear their presence causes. They are little appeased when, invariably, those they approach flee in terror.

Crawling Ghosts take only one form- that of a huge brown cockroach or hornless beetle. Their snapping jaws drip a foul brown fluid, and their feet trail a similar stick substance. They smell horribly, as if they were a manifest presence of rot; this stench is often the first sign of their presence, along with trails of vaporous residue along the walls, ceiling, and floor of a room. Their eyes are small, black, and gleaming, and their antennae wave furiously when they are agitated.

Crawling Ghosts sense very little- they can barely feel through their stiff shells, save pain and the aches of their existence. They see very poorly- beyond about 40 feet, they see very little other than a grey fog. They have no sense of smell, though it seems that they have a more acute sense of taste than Hungry Ghosts, for they relish garbage and rotten things and are repelled by fresh food. Crawling Ghosts can speak, but unless they speak very slowly and quietly, it is nearly impossible to understand them through the insectile stone-scraping squeal of their voices. Crawling Ghosts rarely sense what they have become- many attempt, at first, to go about their old routines or lives, even attempting to stand and dress despite inexplicable difficulties such as strange aches and whirling limbs where there never were any before. This makes them even lonelier, for in attempting to go about normal human existence, they cause even more horror, and become ever lonelier.

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Comments ( 6 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Spark
December 17, 2005, 14:44
I like the concept a lot - every ghost needs a reason, and these horrible little things can fit into a lot of mythologies with ease. A good description, with plenty of opening for an appearance in a quest. I even felt kind of bad for these things, and I'm glad I did, meaning that I'm glad they weren't the usual 2000 foot demon death dragons.
Voted manfred
December 19, 2005, 7:18
What he said.

Logical and applicable. It is disgusting, but just the correct amount for telling a stories to spook children about what becomes of bad people nobody likes.
Voted Ancient Gamer
December 19, 2005, 7:20
Voted Dozus
November 7, 2012, 15:00
Sad and kafkaesque. I like the idea of ghosts taking more physical forms.
Voted Moonlake
June 29, 2013, 23:00
Only voted
Voted valadaar
March 3, 2014, 9:48
How wonderfully odd for a ghost. So strange.

Link Backs


Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

Boots Of Ennui

       By: Murometz

These magical boots empower the wearer with several abilities at once. Wondrous leaping, water-walking, and even flying! Yet the boots possess an insidious curse upon them as well. A deep and almost unfathomable (by others) feeling of listlessness, boredom, and even apathy affects the boots' wearer at all times whenever they are donned. Magic will not dispel the effects.

And so while the wearer of the boots can perform great feats of action during combat or at other opportune times and key moments, they'll never really want to do so, complaining "Meh, what's the point of it all anyway?" or "I would fly up and save us all guys, but sigh, maybe uhm, soonish, mkay? Bit bored by this whole burning tower at the moment."

Naturally the boots wearer's fellow PCs will grow quickly frustrated with this arrangement. There have been numerous occasions when one angry PC literally tears off the boots from his companion's feet in anger, and dons them in turn, only to immediately suffer from the same effects.

The solution lies in constantly "motivating" the boots' wearer with successful rolls, involving threats, flattery, fiery speeches, or even bribery.

Ideas  ( Items ) | January 20, 2014 | View | UpVote 7xp

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