New Mutant Monday # 66 - Lotus Blossom

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 1 or special (see description)
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: Hosts movement or 30' (10')
Armor Class: 8 (or by host)
Hit Dice: 1
Attacks: See Description
Damage: See Description
Save: L1
Morale: N/A
Hoard Class: N/A

The lotus Blossom is not actually a flower, instead it is a horrible parasite that was named after the flower because of the shape it grows on the body of a victim infected by the creature. The wasteland scholars and scientists are at odds as to the origin of the parasite, some believing it is the result of radiation and toxins mutating the original creature, while others speculate that it has to have been created by rogue geneticists as a terror weapon, because it truly is terrifying.

Physically the parasite looks like a long worm with a black head. The head contains two small black bumps that are in fact strange sensory organs. The parasite can live up to 30 days without a host, which makes it very dangerous. It tends to hide in water, or in areas filled with organic matter, feeding of whatever nutrients it can obtain from either source until a hapless victim appears.

The worm-like parasite will then try to attach itself to the victim, or allow the victim to ingest it (the creature is completely immune to acid). As soon as he victim is exposed to the parasite, it is allowed a saving throw versus poison. If it succeeds, the victim’s natural immune system destroys it. Any creature with immunity to disease is automatically immune to the parasite.

If it fails however, the creature will burrow through the body, coming out at a random location and begin to convert the victim’s own flesh into a new nest. This will take 1d6 days, and during this period, the victim will not know anything is amiss, except that their natural healing rate will be halved (rounded down, so that it is possible the victim will not heal anything at all).

At the end of this period, the victim will notice a angry red lump somewhere on its body. The victim is then allowed a new saving throw versus death. If it succeeds, the victim can cut out the lump or find a way to remove it. This will inflict 1d10 points of damage to the victim, but it will remove the parasite. Modern medical drugs (except those for killing disease or parasites) will have no effect on the parasite! Even drugs used to heal the victim will not help, as the parasite will simply flush it out of the body.

If the saving throw fails, the victim will not do anything about the lump, and it will be very careful to keep it hidden from view. Over the next 1d6 days the lump will grow until it is the size of a grapefruit and at this time a series of holes will appear on the lump, spaced evenly around it. During this period, the parasite will have laid eggs in the lump and they will hatch, producing the parasitic worm. The lump will contain a minimum of 10 plus 4d4 holes. Each will contain a worm.

The parasite will then force the victim to expose food, water-sources and even other creatures to the lump. This will always be done in secret to prevent the parasite from being discovered. Anyone exposed to the parasite will have to make a saving throw (see above).

For each day the victim is controlled by the parasite, it will convert the victim’s own body into more worms. It can replenish its entire reserve of worms in one night by converting 1d4 points of Constitution.

This will soon kill the victim (once their Constitution score drops to 0, they die), but will give the worm plenty of opportunity to spread itself throughout a community. The saving grace is that the creature can be killed by any anti-parasite drug, any drug used to cure disease, or by mutations such as Vampiric field. Lost Constitution will return at the victim’s natural healing rate per day (always a minimum of 1d3 points).

Mutations: Immunity (acid), parasitic control (modified)