Pixers

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 1d4 or 4d20
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement: 600' (200') Fly
                     60’(20’) Walk
AC: 2
HD: 2
Attacks: By weapon
Damage: By weapon
Save: L10
Morale: 11
Hoard Class: I, II, III, IX, X, XII and always 1d4 weapons of any type.

As is the case with many of the creatures that inhabit the wastelands left after the end of the final wars, no one is quite sure if these creatures are the result of genetic tinkering or mutation.

These creatures appear as perfectly proportioned Pure Humans, and are uniformly beautiful or handsome. But there is no mistaking the fact that they are in fact mutants because they are only four inches in height! Also the large dragonfly-like wings help to reinforce this fact.

Because of this fact, many people make the mistake (typically fatally) of underestimating the power these creatures possess. They may be tiny and when it comes right down to it, they are quite frail as well, but their mutations more than make up for this drawback.

These little humanoids are extremely territorial and always claim a garden or particularly pretty glade to make their home. They will not tolerate the intrusion of other ‘clans’ into their lands, with the exception of small parties or individuals, as long as they are prominently wearing red somewhere on their person.

Each ‘clan’ is a single family, consisting of a mother and father, who rule the clan with both love and an iron fist, and a massive passel of children, ranging in age from a few months to near adult-hood.

To be blunt, they are typically horny little devils and enjoy the act of procreation a great deal. This is also a survival mechanism because they only live to be about twenty years of age and come into full sexual maturity when they reach mid-life, which is about nine or ten.

Even physically mature members of the species appear to be children, as even once they hit what is considered to be old age; they appear to be in their late teens. Females, once they become pregnant, give birth to twins or triplets. The gestation period is only three months. The babies are cared for by the entire clan, which takes a load off the mother. They are able to fly and interact with the rest of their family at only six months of age.

Personality wise, they are pranksters and have an issue with ‘overcompensation’ due to their lack of stature. They are brave to a fault and have been known to throw their lives away when engaging in creatures many times their size. They are also quick to anger, quick to act, but tend to be long in forgiving. Loyalty is also of the upmost importance to these creatures and the bonds of family, friendship and loyalty are always to the end.

One would think that due to their size they would be extremely vulnerable. For the most part, this is true, but they possess one very powerful mutation that often turns the tide and makes them a very formidable foe. They are able to alter the size of any item they encounter so that they can use it. This does not diminish the power of the item. A laser rifle that has been shrunk to the size of an action-figure’s prop still has the same range and damage as a regular sized weapon.

This also works with armor and there is rumor in the wastelands that several clans have gained access to powered armor and shrunk the suits down so that they could use them. Fortunately they use the artifacts to defend their territory and take down large and vicious predators.

It is also known that they cannot use the mutation on organic beings or compounds. It only works on items that do not possess a life-force. And yes the power also works on constructs such as robotic units and androids. If for some reason a construct is subjected to such an attack, they are allowed a saving throw versus energy to resist. Once they resist, they are immune to the effects for 1 month.

The effects of this mutation can be reversed at will by the creature, although most of the time they would have no desire to do so. Also they can only use this mutation once per day, but every one of the members of a clan over the age of one year is able to use it. All non-robotic items automatically fail unless they are being carried by a player character, at which time they are allowed to use the players saving throw versus energy to resist.

When they engage someone in combat, they will use any weapon they have, including regular melee weapons, which will inflict full damage. It is rather disconcerting for the creatures to attack with a sword that is only an inch in length and have the weapon cause wounds that would normally be found on a full sized version. They can also use a dust that their bodies constantly generate to cause serious irritation to a target. It is treated as a regular attack and anyone who is hit by the attack will suffer 3d6 points of damage (save versus poison for half damage) and will suffer -4 to hit, +2 to AC and -2 to all saving throws for 4d6 turns. There is no detrimental effect if the saving throw succeeds.

Also it is important to note that they are extremely vulnerable to cold. They take five time the normal damage from cold-based attacks and even if the temperature should fall below freezing, it will force them to go into a hibernation state until the cold passes. If the cold snap lasts for more than three months, they must save every two weeks against death or perish. This tends to keep the creatures from living in even moderately temperate zones, although they can still be found there, often using artificial heat-sources to survive the long and cold winters.

These creatures are also vegetarians. They will not eat meat and that is one of the reasons that they are so territorial. They need to protect their garden from anyone who would consume their supplies. They are also particularly fond of honey, which acts like alcohol to them, although when they consume enough to get drunk, they only stay drunk for 2d8 minutes at a time.

Mutations: alter size (modified), dwarfism (to the extreme), quickness, short life-span (d), toxic weapon, vulnerability to cold (d)

Source: Hollows series by Kim Harrison. 

Chris Van Deelen is the author of the Skirmisher Publishing LLC sourcebook Creatures of the Tropical Wastes sourcebook, co-author of its Wisdom from the Wastelands game supplement and contributor to the 'Sword of Kos: Hekaton' Anthology.