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(TFT) TFT Monster: Darning Dart

  Darning Darts a TFT Monster 
  (c) 2005    By Richard Smith

  This is a cross between a gargoyle and a 
dragon fly.  It carries a nasty poison sting.
They have shimmering crystal wings and are
in a variety of bright shiny colors.  (From 
the glass in their body.)
   Also known as a Darting Jab.
  Darning Dart
ST 3 to 5
DX 16 (normally 12 for attacking while flying)
IQ  4 to 6
MA 15 (in air) or 1 (on ground).

Sting does 2d-4 and injects poison (see below).
Bites with 2d-2 in HTH.

Stony armor -4 hits per attack on body.
No armor on crystal wings.

  Like most of the silicon based insects the
Darting Dart tends to gigantism.  Its body is 
from 40 to 85 cm long (tho normally curved into
a U shape with the stinger under the head).
It has 3 pairs of wings spaced 8 to 12 cm 
apart.  like gargoyles they use magic to fly, 
the wings allow it to move quickly.  For each
wing destroyed, lower the flying MA by two.
(So if all wings are knocked off its MA will
3 in the air.)

  It is far easier to hit the wings than the
body.  Any normal attack is at -4 (for a 1 
hex flying creature) and will hit the wings
unless a critical hit is scored.  Any hit on a
wing does no damage but armor stops only one 
hit.  If any damage gets thru, the crystal 
wing is destroyed.

  To hit the body an additional -2 DX penalty
must be taken (in addition to the -4 DX for
a flier.)

  A Darning Dart will flee if it has taken 
more than half its hit points or lost 3 or
more wings.  It will flee even if this will
mean abandoning its nest.

  They will NEVER voluntarily go into HTH.

  If the poison is injected (1+ points of
damage after armor) it will take effect in 
three turns.  Washing with water before
this time is up will be sufficient to halve 
the damage.  The sting will do 2 points of
damage then the victim must make a 3vsST 
roll.  If they succeed they will take no
additional damage.  If they fail they will 
take one additional point of damage in 1
minute.  (Unless treated by a poison antidote.)
  In addition, the poison makes carbon based
life groggy.  The victim will lose 1 IQ and
be unable to use spells and talents that 
require the characters full IQ.  Also no
memories will remain until the grogginess 
wears off.  The mind can not convert short 
term memories to medium or long term ones. So
characters forget everything that happens to
them after a couple minutes for the duration
of this effect.

   The grogginess will last for 30 minutes 
automatically and then the character must try
a 5vsST to recover.  If they fail the roll the
grogginess lasts another 60 minutes & they have 
a 4vsST to recover.  If that fails, it lasts
2 hours and requires a 3vsST to recover.  If
the character fails it lasts 4 more hours &
requires a 2vsST to recover.  If that fails
it wears off in 8 more hours.
  Multiple stings will not further lower the
IQ, but will extend the time people remain
groggy by 10% per extra sting.

   The wings are valuable and always in demand
as the fragments can be used as jewel dust in
wizard's common ingredients.  
   The poison is sometimes in demand as a base
for potions that a chemist can make to cause
people to forget memories.  (No successful
potion has yet been invented but Chemists keep
trying.)  A chemist who is trying to create 
such a formula would offer from $100 to $200
for the poison gland.
   Naturalists can remove the poison sacks if 
they have strong, heavy knife and make a 3vsDX.
The poison lasts for 2 days and must have 
something 'glue' it to the weapon to be 
poisoned.  (It wipes off so easy that it does
not get deep enough into the wound.  Some 
people mix it with contact poison or weapon
poison which sticks better to weapons.

  The creatures live in small colonies living
off minerals.  However they require a small
amount of carbon life form's bones for the 
calcium and other vitamin like substances so
they occasionally attack our forms of life.
However they are willing to act as scavengers
so they can usually get all the bones they
need off of the kills of other animals.

  They are very territorial and will attempt
to drive off people who approach within 30 to
50 meters of their nests.  A nest will have 
two large members and 4 to 8 smaller ones.
They like to make nests in rocky spires or on
the sides of cliffs at least 10 meters above 
the ground.

  Darning Darts live around 3 years.  Add one
IQ and 15 cm to the body length for each year
old it is.  They are a favorite meal of stone
beetles and if a stone beetle smells a nest
it will to extraordinary lengths to climb up
and destroy it.  (Stone beetles that have 
fallen to their deaths below the nests are
also a common sight.)

   Naturalists know that Darning Darts hate 
all types of spider webs.  Waving a weapon thru 
a spider web may be enough to make it choose a
different target.  (The spider web collects
spores that cause their eggs to die and may
cause them to get a fungal like infection 
if they get a cut.)

  They can sense some types of serious illness
in carbon life forms and will start 'checking 
up' on a being that they have detected illness.  
(To chew the bones when it dies...)   A 
superstition has arisen that if a Darning Dart 
is spending much time hanging around you, you're 
sure to die within the year.  For this reason, 
people get very irrational when a nest is living 
nearby, calling on adventurers to climb up and 
destroy it.

  For some reason, if a couple sees one on the
day they become engaged, it is thought to bring
good luck and make that couple immune to their
evil powers.

  Adventure hook -  A young man wants his girl
friend to get married with him.  But she has
so far refused.  However, he knows that she is 
very superstitious.  He hires the adventurers 
to go some where and bring back a live Darting
Jab and release it when the two are together.
Hopefully she will accept his proposal at once
to ward off the evil that the creature brings.
But the specimen brought back is a pregnant 
female and it establishes a successful nest...
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