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Lifeforms
Ethereal
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4.1
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Comments: 7
Ideas: 0
Rating: 4.1
Condition: Normal
ID: 2352

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Updated:
February 25, 2006, 1:36 pm

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Cheka Man

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Welcoming Spirits

By:

“The Welcoming Ones” are the first contact many people will have with the spirit world. Actually, for many they are the first creatures they meet after death.

That was too much strain for your sick heart today. You could hear it beat like a drum, then something has broken up the fast rhythm… intense pain. Just for a second you thought, that you would die… and passed out.

Something wet wakes you up. Smiling you chase the dog away that was licking your face, and then, slowly, loose the smile somewhere. This is not the place where you have been before… this is not the world where you have been before! And that dog looks a bit… human, if that is possible. It calmly seats itself a few steps away, observes you for a while, then says with a frown:
“I guess you are a bit confused.”

Appearance:
Most welcoming spirits have changed into the form of a dog, with vaguely humanoid features. They are able to speak clearly, though.

“But I don’t want to be dead!”
“Nobody wants. You’ll learn to live with it. Got it? You’ll learn to live with it! Hahaha! Man, that gets me every time.”

Behavior:
Generally dog-like. They will scratch themselves with their paws, lick their new friend’s face, and sometimes fool around like only dogs do. They will also explain to the newly deceased that they are dead, what it means, where they are, all the wonderful things they can try and what should be avoided. They are the tourist guides of the Other Side.

After the few things are explained, they will excuse themselves, and leave in search of other newly dead. Of life they only ask how it was, of the feelings, not the details.

Nature:
Welcoming spirits are generally not evil. Some may be a little wicked, and try practical jokes, but their information is mostly correct. Not even hostile behavior can anger them, they have seen it all and can easily avoid amateurish attacks.

As spirits, they are old, and know much, but still miss life desperately. It is for this reason they stay close to the world of the living, to be reminded of life, how it felt, how it… tasted.

Power:
Upon finding the spirits of freshly deceased, they can drain the small remains of life force that are still with them, remembering life and greatly enjoying it. To digest it completely takes time. They need to Contact him or her (hence the licking on the face), and stay close for a while, the target should stay open for this (running away or becoming hostile ruins the drain).

This has no negative effect on the spirit, in fact, it helps in accepting the inevitable, and pass on peacefully without becoming a restless ghost. On the other hand, resurrecting the dead will be harder.

Variants:
Besides the many dog-like welcoming spirits (and quite a few wolf-like), there is at least one beautiful girl, that does the same with a kiss. There is also a raven with black humour, that offers ironic advice while picking pieces of the dead body (only for show of course).

Plot hooks:

  • a Living is occasionally visited by welcoming spirits in his dreams. Should he not act upon it, he could slowly waste away and die (by no ill intent of the spirits - they find him sleeping in the Other Side). The truth is that he has the gift of being sensitive to the spirit world.
  • If searching for a certain spirit, a Welcoming One (a term used by shamans) can be a big help, or at least a good start. Unlike many, they like to deal with the Living to some degree.
  • A hurt welcoming spirit finds a shaman/gifted character. Somebody unusual and/or powerful has died (or became a vengeful spirit), and threatens to upset the local supernatural balance.


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Comments ( 7 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

manfred
February 25, 2006, 13:34
0xp
This shall be a part of a bigger work on the topic of spirits. But since that can take a lot of time yet, I have decided to post it already. I think it could be easily used or adapted by others.
Voted Cheka Man
February 25, 2006, 15:20
0xp
Nice-it brings the myths of a world to life.
Voted MoonHunter
February 25, 2006, 17:59
0xp
It is more a piece of mythology than something that will effect most games. However, given the point where life and death meet often intersects with the lives of character, you might have a use for them.

Interesting and useful either way.
MoonHunter
February 28, 2006, 0:11
0xp
..
Voted Mourngrymn
July 14, 2006, 8:01
0xp
The entire series of spirit posts come together rather nicely manfred. Kudos to you and I may just print all of them out and have in my handy little DM folder.
Voted valadaar
April 29, 2010, 8:37
0xp
I never seen this one before - it most certainly belongs as a daily highlight.

I could see these being big players in an adventure where the PCs have somehow ended up in the afterlife without properly dying.

Hmmm...
Voted Scrasamax
April 30, 2010, 9:15
0xp
Kind of like a miniature psychopomp, I like and approve.

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