IT’S OUR FIRST MONSTER FROM BESTIARY 5!!!
Honestly, I was expecting I would have gotten deeper into the Occult Bestiary’s alphabet by now, but my life has not been kind to blogging the last month or so. That’s fine though—B isn’t a terrible place to start in any case. (You astral dragon fans are going to be peeved though.)
The bagiennik comes from Slavic mythology. Pathfinder has softened them from demons to fey, but kept most of the essential features, including caustic snot with the potential to heal even more than it harms. Surprisingly powerful for such small (or rather, Small) fey, bagienniks are likely much sought after as healers by communities too poor or remote for powerful clerics to visit…even if that means putting up with their large (and probably voracious and troublesome) extended families.
Wikipedia also says that bagienniks are kin to banniks, or bathhouse spirits, and since we don't have stats for the latter, a bagiennik will do quite nicely for those GMs who want to do a Ukrainian version of Spirited Away…
Desperate to cure his young bride of gyre pox, the jarl of Aelf Steading invited a bagiennik and his family to winter in his hold. The salamander-like fey moved right in, and it turned out his family was much larger than advertised. That, combined with the bagienniks’ propensity for pranks and their swampy smell, has the folk of the steading desperate for spring. The jarl remains grateful to the fey, though, and rightly fears the chief god Wotan’s wrath should he renege on his offer of hospitality. Thus his mission to a band of adventurers crazy enough to travel through his land in winter: Find the bagiennik family a new home...and fast.
Adventurers are racing to heal their friend’s wasting disease. Short on options, they seek out a bagiennik rumored to lair in a local swamp. But between them and the fey is the domain of some particularly nasty vooniths, who intend on both tormenting the adventurers and following them to get their hands on the elusive bagiennik flesh they’ve long hungered for. Meanwhile, the adventurers’ old enemies, the sadistic Soot-Black Knights, are hot on their trails, driving their hunting slaves before them on long leashes of iron chain.
A popular medicinal bath is the site of an odd guerilla war. Bagienniks have always tended the natural springs and aided the local healers, to the delight of those patients who made pilgrimages there. Recently though, priests of the Red Lord have restored and reconsecrated an old monastery in the area. While their clerics have not pushed the local healers out, they have assumed de facto ownership of the baths, up to and including hanging the Red Lord’s symbol—offending the nature-revering fey. Pranks and vandalism were the fey’s response, but that only enraged the dour priests of order, and last week blood was spilled for the first time. Now the claws (and the nasal spray) have come out, and any adventurers who visit the baths must pick a side.
—Bestiary 5 40
So far the stats for Bestiary 5 monsters aren’t up yet, so you’ll have to rely on the book itself for the full run-down.
I haven’t followed the Midgard setting very closely (I haven’t even read the two gazetteers I do own), but apparently there’s a Midgard version of the bagiennik as well.
The first time I saw the Aethera Campaign Setting Kickstarter, my spirits fell a little because it veers dangerously close to some ideas I’ve been wanting to work on. So I was a just wee bit bummed that other talented people have launched themselves into that space first.
But now my spirits are falling because I’m worried this project won’t get funded. Despite even a glowing preview on io9, it's been stuck about halfway to its goal, and there are only six days left.
Only SIX days. To make a SPACE setting for Pathfinder a reality. That’s just NUTS.
I want to see this live, so I just plopped down a chunk of change at the Marshal level. Maybe you can do likewise, at whatever level you can afford? (Also, Todd Stewart, an early friend of this blog, is involved.) I pretty much never, ever back a Kickstarter—let alone push one—but I’m backing this one, and it would be cool if you guys did too.