>Hollow Mockeries for old versions of Dungeons & Dragons

>AC equivalent to leather armour.
HD 3
Save as Cleric 3
Damage 1d6 (sharp hooves)
Movement 18
Morale 5

Hollow Mockeries have the appearance of the corpse of a horse, which has been whipped around the head and neck, so that it is covered in blood and strips of flesh, and much of the skull is revealed. They are usually festooned with bells and bright bows, as if they were to be presented as a gift.

Most scholars agree that they may be created when a person dies in a way which caricatures the purpose of their entire life. The idealist who builds so many prisons in the name of freedom that he is eventually hung as a tyrant; the woman who, desperate for a child to nurture, steals another’s baby and then starts a house fire while cooking for it, killing the baby and herself; the hunter who seeks food, freedom, and solitude in the forest, and then starves to death, caught in their own trap and with no one to call for help. The spirit of such a person knows no rest as the morbid irony gnaws at them, and so the corpse releases melancholic vapours which can coalesce into this spiteful creature. That at least is the most commonly-accepted theory of their origin. Another theory is that they are scape-goats – animals ritually filled with the sins of a community and driven into the wilderness – who were filled with spite and malice.

They are undead (immune to sleep and charm, can be turned). They are spiteful and vicious creatures, and will generally demand a ‘tax’ from anyone entering their territory (they speak Common). The tax can be any amount of money, or thing of value. Player-characters will feel an utter humiliation and outrage at the thought of submitting to the creatures’ demands. If they do so they will lose 100XP (and if they give treasure, won’t get any XP for that treasure).

The creatures are hollow, which has several consequences: Blunt weapons such as clubs do only half damage. Blades such as swords do normal damage. Pointed weapons such as arrows and spears do normal damage, and there is a 1 in 3 chance that the creature will be pierced. In this case it will react like a balloon which has been blown up without being tied, and then let go: the creature will whiz around the room and collapse, deflated and ‘dead’.

Optionally the DM may give the creatures some sort of poison – although it is unliikely to be fatal.

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