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Pyrausta, Elder

Tiny dragon, chaotic neutral

Armor Class 13
Hit Points 10 (4d4)
Speed 20 ft., fly 60 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
7 (-2) 17 (+3) 10 (+0) 7 (-2) 14 (+2) 15 (+2)

Damage Immunities fire
Skills Perception +6, Stealth +7
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 16
Languages Draconic
Challenge 1/4 (50 XP)

SPECIAL TRAITS

  • Flyby. The pyrausta doesn’t provoke opportunity attacks when it flies out of an enemy’s reach.
  • Heart of Flame. A tiny spark of flame that acts as a pyrausta’s heart beats within its chest. Whenever a pyrausta takes cold damage, including damage from environmental cold, its little heart stalls. Its regeneration does not function until the end of its next turn and it must make a DC 11 Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, it must use its next action to re-ignite its heart, or it will take 1 point of cold damage at the end of each of its turns until it does.
  • Regeneration. The pyrausta regains 1 hit point at the start of its turn if it has at least 1 hit point.

ACTIONS

  • Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 0 ft., one target. Hit: 1 piercing damage plus 1 fire damage.
  • Fire Breath (Recharge 5-6). The pyrausta exhales fire in a 10-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC 9 Dexterity saving throw, taking 2 (1d4) fire damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.

ABOUT

Though perhaps the smallest of dragons, pyraustas are not insecure about their size, for they lack the inflated egos so common among their larger kindred.

Instead, pyraustas delight in being what they are, and live in the here and now. Though their natural life spans are similar to a human’s, their dependence on flame to keep their hearts beating means the average pyrausta meets its end much sooner. A typical pyrausta’s body is 9 inches long, though its wingspan is longer, and it weighs 1 to 2 pounds.

Hearts Aflame. Some scholars believe that pyraustas, sometimes called “insect dragons” or “true dragonflies,” are spawned from the very hearts of volcanoes, where flickering flames are common. In truth, young pyraustas are conceived in the warmest months of the year, when swarms of the creatures gather high in the night skies and perform elaborate courtship rituals with their colorful flames, frolicking playfully in mid-flight. These swarms are often mistaken for fireflies, auroras, or other phenomena. A pyrausta’s flame and its heart are one, and its fiery breath changes color depending on the creature’s emotions. Pyraustas use their inner flames primarily to express themselves, creating vivid pyrotechnic displays to communicate their feelings. They can also use this flame as a weapon if necessary, but prefer not to.

Elder Pyraustas. Pyraustas who outlive the short life spans their frailty often imposes on them can grow to become far larger and more dangerous than their younger kin. Elder pyraustas don’t usually grow arrogant as their might increases; they instead either offer wisdom to other pyraustas, settling disputes and acting as guardians and mentors to their younger kin, or else travel far and wide, bridging the gaps between disparate pyrausta communities.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

The Dragon’s Hoard #18 © 2022, Legendary Games; Authors Jason Nelson, Miguel Colon, Alex Riggs, Mike Myler, Robert J. Grady, Michael “solomani” Mifsud, Darrin Drader, Matt Kimmel, Scott D. Young.

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