Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Seaweed Siren

The seaweed siren is a straight-out-of-a-Saturday-morning cartoon kind of monster—and I mean that in the best way possible.  It’s the sort of monster you’d find rising out of the swamp in some Hanna-Barbera episode—a horrible blend of crustacean, plant, and singing false heads.  And while seaweed sirens can charm victims three times per day—hence the “siren” in their name—it’s their full range of sonic special abilities that really sets them apart.  (Again going back to the cartoon thing: Can’t you picture the white rings and that tweedling sound that always indicated sonic or mind attacks on TV?)

The full description from Pathfinder Adventure Path #60: From Hell’s Heart has some nice tidbits, like that the otherwise benevolent locathah sometimes use seaweed sirens as guardians, or that they would rather babble their way to comprehension than use tongues.  (Also, despite speaking Aklo these are apparently magical beasts, not aberrations as one might expect).  But mostly, these are straight-up threats that teach Good Samaritans to think twice before rescuing those three drowning ladies in the cove the map marked with a skull.

The subterranean city of Catchall squats next to a great lake fed by waterfalls from the surface.  Catchall’s scavengers hang nets to snag the flotsam and jetsam that makes its way down the falls into the dark cavern.  They all tread cautiously though, as a seaweed siren lives near the falls.  Some nights it can even be found on shore, deep in conference with gibbering mothers and strings of will-o’-wisps.

Adventurers wish to sunder the cursed blade of an efreeti, a weapon of fire and malice.  The touch of an awakened narwhal’s blessed horn would be the ideal tool…but in a pinch (and so far from the cold latitudes) the strident squall of an aquatic monster like a seaweed siren should do the trick.

A kelpie is smitten with a leanan sidhe—or at least he was until a hurricane carried a crablike seaweed siren to his bay, and he begins to woo the great beast with charmed victims.  Even though she regarded the disgusting kelpie as one step above boiled cabbage, the leanan sidhe is furious that she has been tossed aside for an Aklo-babbling monstrosity.  She uses her charms and cunning to sic adventurers on her wayward kelpie swain and the seaweed siren alike.

—Pathfinder Adventure Path #60 90–91 & Pathfinder Bestiary 4 235

This week’s radio show was teenage-themed!  Songs about teenagers, for teenagers, with "teenage" in the title...and the 20th anniversary of the soundtrack to the essential teen movie Clueless!  Plus new JR JR and more.  Stream or download it here.

(Link good till Monday, 7/27, at midnight.  If the feed skips, Save As an mp3 and listen from your desktop.)

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