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Copsewight

The twisted, leafless branches of this dead tree still bear bright red fruit, each one shriveled and covered in splotches of black rot.

Copsewight CR 11

Source Pathfinder #119: Prisoners of the Blight pg. 80
XP 12,800
NE Huge undead
Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +12

Defense

AC 26, touch 12, flat-footed 26 (+14 natural, +4 profane, –2 size)
hp 136 (16d8+64); regeneration 5 (fire or positive energy)
Fort +9, Ref +7, Will +13
Defensive Abilities all-around vision, channel resistance +4; Immune polymorph, undead traits; Resist cold 10
Weaknesses vulnerable to fire

Offense

Speed 5 ft.
Melee 4 slams +17 (1d8+6 plus grab)
Ranged fruit bomb +11 touch (1d6 plus poison)
Space 15 ft., Reach 15 ft.
Special Attacks constrict (1d8+6), fruit bombs, poison, spiked branches

Statistics

Str 22, Dex 11, Con —, Int 5, Wis 16, Cha 19
Base Atk +12; CMB +20 (+24 grapple); CMD 34 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Cleave, Improved Initiative, Lightning Reflexes, Point- Blank Shot, Power Attack, Precise Shot, Weapon Focus (slam, fruit bomb)
Skills Disguise +13 (+17 to appear as a dead tree), Perception +12, Stealth –1; Racial Modifiers +4 Disguise to appear as a dead tree
Languages Sylvan (can’t speak)
SQ blight wrath, infectious blight

Ecology

Environment any forest
Organization solitary or grove (2–10)
Treasure incidental (poison fruit)

Special Abilities

Blight Wrath (Su) The twisted forces that animated the blighted tree as a copsewight infused it with negative energy, granting the creature channel resistance +4 and a profane bonus to AC equal to its Charisma modifier. The dead tree draws this hateful energy up from the soil, regenerating any damage that isn’t caused by fire or positive energy.

Fruit Bombs (Ex) No matter what kind of tree a copsewight was before it died, the unliving plant now bears poisonous fruit, which grows continually and is rotten from the moment it forms on the branches. The tree can fling a fruit at an enemy as a ranged touch attack with a 20-foot range increment. The fruit splatters on impact, dealing 1d6 points of damage and exposing the target to the fruit’s poison. A creature that consumes a fruit or its juice is automatically exposed to 2 doses of the poison (see below).

Infectious Blight (Su) A copsewight can infect surrounding trees with its evil, putting entire forests at risk of becoming nightmare groves full of deadly, vengeful trees. For each day a copsewight remains rooted in one spot, it has a 2% cumulative chance to infect all trees within 60 feet with its blight. Infected trees wither and die over the course of a week, and mature trees turn into new copsewights after the seventh day.

Poison (Ex) Copsewight Poison: Fruit bomb—contact; save Fort DC 22; frequency 1/round for 2 rounds; effect 1d2 Con damage; cure 1 save.

Spiked Branches (Ex) A copsewight’s branches are studded with thorns and the sharp ends of broken, smaller branches, causing its slam attacks to deal both bludgeoning and piercing damage.

Many cultures believe that all of nature is alive, animated by a spiritual force that flows through plants and animals alike. This leads to the concept that all things are connected, and that imbalances in nature are at the heart of the greatest environmental disasters, especially when those imbalances are caused by the carelessness or cruelty of civilized races. Whatever their source, some imbalances lead to the creation of even greater horrors, like the blighted copsewight.

Copsewights are formed from trees that died of magical or supernatural blight. They appear to be normal dead trees, except for the bright red fruits that seem to be rotting where they hang on the tree’s branches. Copsewights have an instinctual intelligence and try to maintain the appearance of being nothing more than dead trees until their victims are within reach.

A copsewight is 30 feet tall and weighs 12,000 pounds.

Ecology

Copsewights can form from any sort of deciduous tree. Conifers and other plants are simply killed by the creature’s blight. As undead, copsewights have no further need for nourishment. Their roots tap into some otherworldly source of power, allowing them to regenerate lost limbs, heal damage, and replace the fruit they throw at enemies. As such, they gain no sustenance from the soil or from the creatures they kill. Based on their behavior, copsewights exist for the sole purpose of killing the living and spreading their blight to the rest of the forest.

A single copsewight can be dangerous to those fooled by its appearance. The creature especially enjoys luring in humanoids, but takes the opportunity to attack animals or other living creatures that threaten it or if there are no preferable targets within range. A copsewight does its best to disguise itself, swaying in the wind to mimic the motions of normal trees.

When multiple copsewights gather together, they are much more difficult to overcome. The trees conspire to catch victims in the cross fire of their poisonous fruits or to drive targets within reach of each other’s grasping limbs. It is unclear how they communicate, but they coordinate their attacks as well as pack-hunting animals.

Scholars believe that the first copsewights may have been intentionally created by some vengeful fey who wanted to punish mortals for allowing a favorite tree or grove of trees to succumb to disease. Proponents of this theory point to the fact that copsewights understand Sylvan, although they cannot speak any languages. Others claim that they are a byproduct of the Abyssal Darkblight ravaging portions of the Fangwood, but the trees move very slowly and have been encountered in places scattered around the Inner Sea region and beyond, suggesting that the Darkblight is not the only source of these creatures. Whatever their original source, most copsewights now seem to arise spontaneously, especially when diseased trees die within an area contaminated by fell magic.

A cleric of 20th level who serves a deity with the Death, Destruction, or Plant domain can use the create greater undead spell to create copsewights from trees killed by blight or disease.

Habitat and Society

Copsewights are usually found in large forests. Even there, they are blessedly rare. With its ability to spread contagion and create more of its kind from the trees it kills, even one copsewight is a threat. Druids, most fey, and servants of the Green Faith are always on the lookout for signs of copsewights and strive to eliminate them.

Although these undead trees have basic instincts and are sometimes found in groups, they have no formal social structure. They have no natural life cycle and continue to exist until they are discovered and destroyed. Although their rotting fruit contains seeds, nothing grows from them. Only poisoners have any use for the fruit.

Copsewights have been discovered in many of the most infamous forests on Golarion. Rumors suggest that one of the creatures made its way from the Fangwood to the Duskshroud Forest on Molthune’s border with Druma, although it seems unlikely one of the trees could travel that far, especially since it would have to cross the Nosam River. Explorers have also reported encountering copsewights in the Whisperwood in Nidal and in the Tanglebriar in Kyonin. The creatures appear in parts of the Mwangi Expanse as well.

Recent reports from Lastwall indicate that two powerful copsewights have taken up residence in the old courtyard of the Vaishau Ruin, along the river road that runs between Vigil and Gallowspire. The ruin has a reputation as a lure for undead, who seem to be answering a call that only they can hear. The Knights of Ozem dealt with the trees during one of their monthly trips to the ruin, but the renewed undead presence remains a mystery. No one seems to know who or what calls them to the ruin or why these two copsewights were so strong.

Copsewight Poison

Price 500 gp
Type poison, contact; Save Fortitude DC 18
Onset immediate; Frequency 1/round for 2 rounds
Effect 1d2 Con damage; Cure 1 save
A skilled alchemist can collect and preserve the juices from a copsewight’s fruit, distilling them into a contact poison. The fruit from a single copsewight can produce up to 12 doses of poison.