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Card Shark

Tiny fiend (shapechanger), chaotic evil

Armor Class 13
Hit Points 40 (16d4)
Speed 20 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
2 (–4) 16 (+3) 10 (+0) 12 (+1) 10 (+0) 16 (+3)

Skills Deception +7, Perception +2, Stealth +7
Condition Immunities prone
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 12
Languages Abyssal, Common, telepathy 60 ft.
Challenge 4 (1,100 XP)

SPECIAL TRAITS

  • Shapechanger. The card shark can use its action to polymorph into an object that weighs 1 pound or less or back into its true form as a tiny, rectangular block of clay with a pair of minute legs and arms. Its statistics are the same in each form. Any equipment it is wearing or carrying isn’t transformed. It reverts to its true form if it dies. Whenever a card shark uses this feature to aid another creature during a game of chance, the participant benefiting from the card shark’s interference has advantage on any check made to determine the game’s outcome. Using a card shark in this manner may require the target to succeed on a Dexterity (Sleight of Hand) check contested by the opponent’s Wisdom (Perception) check to prevent opponents from detecting the ruse, if the opponent is aware of the card shark’s presence. If the GM opts to recreate an actual game of chance, a card shark may instead transform into any gaming piece of the player’s choice.
  • Euphoria Drain. A card shark can use an action to establish a telepathic, parasitic link between itself and any humanoid it can see within 30 feet. The target must succeed on a DC 13 Charisma saving throw to thwart the card shark’s attempt to create the link and become immune to that card shark’s telepathic link for the next 24 hours. When a card shark successfully establishes a telepathic link between itself and its subject, it communicates its intentions to aid the target in games of chance by visually demonstrating its shapechanger feature. Naturally, it omits any details about the price it exacts, though it must succeed on a Charisma (Deception) check contested by the target’s Wisdom (Insight) check to allow its omission to go unnoticed. If the subject declines a card shark’s offer of assistance after the preceding demonstration or simply ignores the card shark’s overtures, the telepathic link is instantly severed, and the same card shark cannot attempt to establish another telepathic link with that same creature for 24 hours. A target who accepts the card shark’s offer must voluntarily allow the card shark to absorb a drop of its sweat or any other appropriate bodily fluid that the creature secretes when excited, nervous, or aroused. This act establishes a parasitic link between the pair. A card shark cannot have more than one parasitic link in effect at any time. If a card shark establishes a parasitic link with a new subject, the previous parasitic link immediately ceases and is replaced by the new parasitic link. On the other hand, the host cannot voluntarily sever the parasitic link without a struggle. Each day at dawn, the creature can attempt to sever the parasitic link by succeeding on a Charisma saving throw. The DC starts at 13 and increases by +1 for each day since the card shark established the parasitic link. A humanoid parasitically linked to the card shark must succeed on a DC 13 Charisma saving throw or take 7 (2d6) psychic damage each time a card shark transforms into a specific object to win a game of chance for the target. A creature who succeeds on the preceding saving throw takes half as much damage. The card shark regains a number of hit points equal to the psychic damage dealt. A creature parasitically linked to the card shark cannot target that particular card shark with an attack or harmful spell. However, it can affect the fiend with area effects. When a card shark takes damage, the parasitically linked creature also suffers damage equal to the damage dealt to the card shark, regardless of its source. When a parasitically linked creature is reduced to 0 hit points, the card shark can attempt to take over the creature’s body as though by a magic jar spell with the exception that the card shark’s transfers its hit points to the new body. The target creature makes a DC 13 Charisma saving throw. On a failure, the subject and the card shark switch places. The card shark’s former body becomes a lifeless receptacle that houses the victim’s soul. A card shark can use an action to return to its true form, which immediately ends the magic jar effect. False Appearance (object form only). While the card shark remains motionless, it is indistinguishable from an ordinary object.

ACTIONS

  • Pseudopod. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 1 bludgeoning damage.
  • Suicide Kings (recharge 5–6). Ranged Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, range 20/60 ft., one target, Hit: Draw a card from a deck of standard playing cards. Any creature struck by the card takes an amount of damage equal to the card’s value. Treat an ace as 1 point and any face card (jack, queen or king) as 10. If the card’s suit is diamonds or hearts, the attack deals an extra 7 (2d6) fire damage. If the card’s suit is clubs or spades, the attack deals an extra 7 (2d6) necrotic damage.
Section 15: Copyright Notice
Adventures in Tehuatl, © 2020, Frog God Games; Authors Tom Knauss, Tim Hitchcock, and Rob Manning