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Paguroida

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Paguroida
(Creature)
Type Monstrous humanoid
(aquatic)
CR 9
Environment Temperate coastlines
Alignment

Source: Into the Shattered Continent, pg(s). 86

Paguroidas are a race of hermit crab-like monstrous humanoids believed to be the result of aboleth experimentation on the murajau.[1]

Appearance

A paguroida has a crab face, with protruding eyestalks and a wide mandible-filled mouth, and a humanoid torso in both shape and size. One of its arms terminates in a hand, while the other ends in a large pincer. The paguroida scuttles on six legs beneath a massive shell with glinting metal and gems embedded into its surface. A typical paguroida stands seven feet tall and weighs 1,200 pounds.[1]

Ecology

Paguroidas mature at the age of 150, reproduce only once per 200–300 years and live for more than a millennium. Female paguroidas each lay a single egg in a secluded location, then abandon it among a small cache of magical items. Nearby males can then sense the egg's unique magical aura and fertilise it, causing it to lose the aura, then guard it for six months before it hatches.[1]

Baby paguroidas are vulnerable, taking five years to harden their shell. During their first year, their father often gives them at least one magical item from his shell alongside the ones left behind by the mother and help them embedding the items into their shell.[1]

Paguroidas prefer to dwell in underwater caverns inaccessible from the surface, near ancient ruins. These lairs are protected with powerful illusions and abjurations from thieves.[1]

Society

Paguroidas live solitary lives, only rarely congregating in groups for defence or consolidation of resources. These groups almost never exceed ten members, so as to avoid drawing the attention of treasure hunters.[1]

When a paguroida first discovers an intelligent interloper, it prefers to avoid combat and trick the creature into leaving. If discovered, it will then try to offer a magic item as bribe so the unwanted guest would leave, but this is often a last resort, as they know that most creatures will then seek more and respond with force if their demands are denied. Because of this xenophobia and isolation, paguroidas rarely die unnatural deaths.[1]

Because of their mutual penchant for hoarding wealth, dragons are the primary threat of paguroidas, so paguroidas avoid even non-evil dragons out of self-preservation. They only cooperate with dragons when offered significant magical wealth, and only do so warily.[1]

References