Despite its apparently placid, bovine demeanor, the werezebu is a fearsome—nah, I’m kidding. We’re done with lycanthropes for a while.
Introduced by Greg Vaughan in the Inner Sea Bestiary, the whirlmaw looks like a mynock from Hell, all sawlike mouth and wings and little else. But instead of power cables, the whirlmaw eats people.
Everything else you need to know—aside from their gemlike, possibly fire-resistant eyes—is summed up as follows: “The skeletal remains of whirlmaws' victims can be identified by the suspiciously circular sections of their torsos missing where the creatures burrowed through and consumed the flesh, bone, and organs in their entirety.” And they can spot you a mile away. Better roll for initiative.
Whirlmaws are primarily found in deserts and canyons, but given their outlandish appearance I could just as easily see them underground, in the darkest forests, and in the wilds of space.
Tales of whirlmaws have been trickling out of the deep desert for years, but the caliph scoffed at them. He changed his tune when his own prize hippogriff herd fell victim to the aberrations. Now he needs brave souls to ride replacement steeds in the (often-lethal) Belltower Circuit, as well as exterminate the whirlmaw threat.
Some unscrupulous dwarves begin selling “whirl beryls,” and the local alchemists quickly buy up the lot. As demand grows, the dwarves begin recruiting prospectors to mine for the gems. Trade increases, but strangely the miners never return.
An adventuring party is captured by raiders and stowed in the hold of their sunship. Then drake-like elementals set the sunship’s lightfoils aflame, sending it spiraling down to the desert planet below. The party must then figure out a way to get off this desolate rock. If they attempt to repair the ship, they have to ally with or defeat the pirates. If they set one foot outside, they have to contend with scorching days, freezing nights, and flights of ravenous whirlmaws.
—Inner Sea Bestiary 60
If you’re looking for the whale, it surfaced all the way back here.
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