Wednesday, April 15, 2015


Given that so many tropical fey seem largely bent on mischief or worse—the mockingfey and larabay (see Isles of the Shackles) being respective examples, and that’s not even counting out-and-out monsters like the popobala or blood hag—it seems the region’s plants have to fend for themselves.  Hence the kapre, a kind of tropical treant (originally from the Philippines) with a face like a Tiki mask and its own unique flair.  And by flair, I mean that literally, given that they have flaring, ember-like eyes, smoky breath, and favor magical cigars.

Given this forbidding aspect, PCs might be forgiven for not realizing that kapres play a role similar to that of treants.  The expanded kapre ecology (from Pathfinder Adventure Path #58: Island of Empty Eyes) also explains that they occasionally become fascinated by local women or are the victims of malicious rumors and superstitions.  So on the one hand, PCs might be on the side of local loggers or colonizers and have to drive a kapre off.  On the other hand, they may be playing the role of Scooby-Doo and the gang, discovering that the strange masked monster in the woods is quite friendly, and that Old Man Withers is really to blame.

A kapre has developed a fascination for a local beauty.  Unfortunately, the beauty also happens to be a disguised blood hag.  The poor kapre is so far unaware that the mysterious fires that have scorched its grove are her work.  Reveling in her deception, the soucouyant has set the plant creature against the local pineapple farmers.  She is thus free to drain the blood and burn the bodies of her victims in the chaotic aftermath of the kapre’s attacks.

A headman’s wife has run off with a dryad.  Humiliated, the headman seeks revenge, but knows he cannot hunt the dryad without risking the ire of the Smoker, the region’s kapre guardian.  He invents a series of crimes that he blames on the kapre to stir up anger against the plant creature, as well as spreads rumors of a wish-granting stone in the kapre’s possession.  While the villagers hunt the kapre and the stone, he plans to revenge himself upon his wife and her dryad lover.  Actually the kapre does have a luminous ovoid that it guards—a cloud dragon egg whose parents will be returning soon.

Sometimes a kapre cigar is not just a kapre cigar.  An elder halfling sends adventurers to retrieve a box of cigars from a kapre he befriended long ago.  But some of the cigars are actually cleverly concealed maps and detailed reports on slave ships and troop movements.  The enemy consortium has enchanters on its side, however, and before the box can be retrieved the kapre is turned against the very adventurers it was supposed to aid.

Pathfinder Adventure Path #58 86–87 & Pathfinder Bestiary 4 172

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