(Mother; the Black Fish of the Woods with Nine Billion Young)
Description: The Progenitor is a mottled, sticky mass of dark colors shot through with streaks of red and pale yellow. It rolls through the woods at a glacial pace without any apparent aim, although it does seem to show some preference for visiting nearby lakes and streams. It consumes everything organic that it touches. At irregular intervals – perhaps when it has consumed sufficient mass – it “births” a living form – ranging from simple, natural animals to nightmarish monsters or bizarre, hostile plants. If the Progenitor is sentient, neither its mind nor its means of communication are comprehensible to humans.
Worshipers: Yes, but not many. The area of woods where Mother wanders is protected against incursion by strong taboos and only a few people know why. Some members of some communities preserve “the old ways,” knowledge of how to venture into Mother’s territory while avoiding the god itself, but religious practices end with these traditions and bans and do not extend to any direct acts of worship. Careful cartography may reveal a large, ancient engineering project: someone seems to have built a ring of berms surrounding an area of canals and artificial lakes in a successful attempt to contain the threat.
Servitors: Yes. While the Progenitor’s “young” do not serve in the normal sense – the latter keep away to avoid being consumed, while the former has no capacity to make requests or give commands – they do tend to hunt or attack intruders due to needs such as food, territorial defense, or even sport.
Confrontation: The Progenitor tends to move toward stimuli such as light, sound, and motion, and may even speed up at times, but does not seem to recognize or respond to attacks. It has no organs and is viscous enough that most piercing, cutting, or crushing attacks have no real effect. Pieces separated from the main mass will attempt to rejoin with Mother; those that cannot will either spontaneously form into “young” or simply decompose into stinking, disease-ridden slime. The Progenitor’s material is neither fireproof nor especially flammable. Touching it deals from d4 to d20 damage (depending on how much exposed flesh came into contact) and forces a Reflex save (to avoid immediately losing an entire limb or worse) and Corruption save (to avoid virulent necrosis at the point of contact) of difficulty equal to the damage die. Attempting mental contact forces a Psychic save at difficulty d30; failure deals strain equal to the amount by which the roll failed.
Aspect: Carbon, chaos, life. Those present at defeat boost each attribute and their Life meter, and immediately become ravenously hungry. Humanity must always be checked (difficulty d20) to avoid consuming as much of the Progenitor’s material as possible.
Powers – Tier 1: The character gains the skill Craft Servitor with a base value equal to their Constitution or Strength modifier, whichever is higher. Skill points may be invested in this normally. Any part of the character’s body that is separated from them – including flesh and blood, but not inert substances such as sweat, mucous, hair, or nails – forms into a living creature of equal mass and HP. These generally take the form of small copies of the character, although the character may succeed at a Craft: Servitor check to shape such creatures while they are taking form. The character may heal a point of damage by consuming a day’s worth of rations.
Powers – Tier 2: The character becomes immune to poison and disease, and gains +2 to Craft Servitor.
Powers – Tier 3: The character gains the ability to reshape their servitors or even reabsorb them (healing damage in the process) with a successful Craft Servitor check, and gains +1 to any physical stat. Craft Servitor again gains +2. The character can now digest any organic material, although some materials (such as bone shards) may still be hazardous on the way down. Characters may also consume food specifically in order to create a servitor without losing HP, although the pace is sadly restricted by the limited capacity of the human digestive tract.
Powers – Other: When necessary, the character may enter a torpid, hibernation-like state in which they absorb nutrients through their skin. This requires that the character be mostly covered in natural water or loose rich soil.
Example Checks: The character has an edge of hunger, and checks Humanity to avoid attempting to consume anything that seems appealing, especially god-flesh.
Notes: The appellation “Black Fish of the Woods with Eight Billion Young” is the direct translation of a term in a local tongue that could more loosely be rendered as “infinite.”
Yes, we’re getting a bit Lovecraftian here. This is one of those gods that you bring out if you want things to be a bit darker or more challenging.