Starfinder: Horologue

Chris Van Deelen

Horologue Spellcaster CR 2 XP 600

Chaotic evil medium outsider (Horologue)

Init +1; Senses: Darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +7

 

Defense                                                             HP 21

EAC: 12; KAC: 13

Fort: +1; Ref: +3; Will: +5

 

Offense

Speed: 30 ft.

Melee: Bite +7 (1d6+4 P) or two claws +3 (1d4+4 S Crit bleed 1d3)

Space: 5 ft., Reach: 5 ft.

Offensive Abilities: Drain years

 

Statistics

Str +2; Dex +1; Con +0; Int +0; Wis +4; Cha +0

Skills: Diplomacy +12, stealth +12

Languages: Common, Horologue

 

Ecology

Environment: Any

Organization: Solitary, small groups (1d4+2)

 

Special Abilities

Drain Years (Su): When a character is bitten by one of these creatures, they must make a Will save (DC14) or lose 1d6+2 years. This does not age them, instead it reverses aging. Many people might consider this to be a blessing in disguise, but it is not. For every 3 years, the target gains one permanent negative level. To make matters worse, every day the target must make another saving throw or continue to lose years. Eventually this will de-age the character to an adolescent, child, infant and finally the character will cease to exist. This will also happen if the target takes more negative levels than they possess levels. The only way to prevent this from happing is to hunt down and kill the Horologue, or by casting a Remove Affliction. Any permanent negative levels can only be regained by using greater restoration.

 

Horologue’s are strange creatures from another dimension. Instead of consuming food to survive, they steal time from a victim, stripping away years from the target until all their time has been consumed and they disappear forever.

These beings appear as tall, muscular black-skinned beings. The shape of the body is humanoid, and they have long claws on their fingers. The mouth appears to be non-existent, until it opens to reveal sharp, gleaming-white teeth. Where they eyes would be located are what appear to be clocks, with hands that move constantly around the numbers.

These creatures are often summoned by those who have major regrets in their lives, and fervently wish to be able to go back in time in order to change what happened, be it the loss of a loved one, another tragic event, gambling, anything that one wishes they could change.

Out from the shadows these creatures will appear, and offer to ‘turn back time’. If the victim willingly accepts this, they will be bitten by the Horologue and ‘cursed’ by them. The victim does not get a saving throw and will lose more and more years as each day passes, again without the benefit of the saving throw, until they eventually disappear.

If the victim refuses the offer, the Horologue will then attack, and will still attempt to steal the years from the target.

Once a victim has been bitten and fails the saving throw, the only way to reverse their inevitable disappearance is to kill the Horologue that bit them. Once the creature has been destroyed, all the years will be returned to the character, and all negative levels will be instantly erased.

These creatures are quite cunning, and will often hide in the shadows, especially around graveyards, hospitals, casinos, bars and other places that typically attract those in need and usually have negative energy surrounding them. They will watch, looking for potential ‘meals’, and will more often than not appear when a victim is making the wish to turn back the clock in order to change what has happened to them. Other times, the creatures will simply stalk and attack anyone alone, or if they are out in small groups, will even go after small gatherings in order to feed upon the targets.

When they do decide to engage in conversation, they will heap praise upon the victim, telling them that what they desire is possible, and they can grant it. Victims who choose to argue will find that they are ‘negotiating’ with creatures who seem to have the answer for any argument they can come up with. Eventually the creature will tire of dealing with the target, and will then attack, determined to take what it wants.

In order to hunt down one of these creatures to kill it, this is a lot easier than it seems. All one has to do is return to where they encountered the creature to begin with, and wait. Eventually the creature will appear, ready to finish the victim. This is the perfect time for the hunter to spring an attack on the creature. When the Horologue discovers what is happening, it will attempt to escape, by using its shadow step ability. If it succeeds, it will then travel to another location.

If this happens, the only way to discover the possible location is to make a culture check (general) DC 16. If it succeeds, then the hunter can take the victim to the location, and again wait until the creature appears. Eventually either the victim will run out of time and disappear, or the Horologue will be defeated and the victim will be saved.

 

The GM can easily increase the challenge rating of these creatures by using the rules. Note that increasing the statistics are very easy to do – just follow the rules in AA1.

Up until CR 5, every hundred years consumed will increase the CR by 1. For example, a Horologue steals a total of 270 years from its victims, so its new CR is 4 instead of 2. Once it has consumed another 31 years, then its CR increases to 5.

Once a Horologue has hit CR five, it requires 250 years to increase to a new CR, and it changes from appearing humanoid to that of a hunting beast, such as a great cat, wolf or other similar creature. It will retain this form until it reaches CR 10, at which time it changes once again. At this state in its life, it can use an additional 2 skills (1 Master, 1 good), and is able to use a new special ability.

Slow Time (Su): As a full round action, the Horologue is able to target a specific individual and cause it to slow down. The target is allowed a Will saving throw, and if it fails, the target is slowed significantly, being able to act only once every 2nd round until the target succeeds in making a save. Even if the target fails, they are considered to be staggered during the round it saves. The creature can use this ability at will.

At CR 10, the amount of years it can steal increases to 500 in order to change to the next CR rating. In this aspect, the creature takes on yet another form, appearing as a great predator, such as a Dragon or other powerful mythical creature. This lasts until it hits CR 15. The Horologue is still able to use Slow Time, but gains an additional ability.

Speed Time (Su): As a standard action, the Horologue is able to manipulate time around itself, greatly increasing its speed. This acts like Haste, but gives the Horologue an additional 50 ft. a round movement speed to any type of movement it possesses, and it can take two standard actions and two movement actions. It can only do this once every three rounds, and the haste will last for a single round.

At CR 15 the creature requires at thousand years to increase its CR. It returns to a humanoid form, but it gains the ability to appear as a humanoid, and it can even use humanoid equipment, armour and weapons. It has a full range of emotions, and gains additional abilities as well.  It still retains both slow time and speed time, and gains an additional two abilities .

Call Horologue (Su): As a standard action, the Horologue can call reinforcements from its home plane. On the next round 1d4+2 CR 4 or less, and 1d3 CR 5-10 Horologue will appear. They will always appear within 100 feet of the summoner, and will last for 1d6 minutes or until killed.

Stop Time (Su): As a full round action, the Horologue is able to completely stop time. This is an area of effect ability, and covers 30 feet. Anything caught in the area of effect is allowed a Reflex save (DC based on the CR of the Horologue). If it succeeds, the target can move out of the area of effect with no ill effects. If the save fails however, the target is stuck in time. This lasts for 1d4 minutes. While caught in the effect, the target is immune to all damage, environmental effects, spell effects and so forth. At the same time, they cannot take any action at all.

This allows the Horologue to position other Horologue around the trapped targets, take the time to heal damage it has sustained, perform complex tasks and so forth. Even escape if it is overwhelmed by the opposition. The creature will use this ability only to its advantage. It can use this ability only once per day.

Starfinder Creature Index

Chris Van Deelen is the creator and contributor to over half of the Wisdom from the Wastelands series, contributor to the Swords of Kos: Hekaton anthology, and the recently released 'Swords of Kos: The Rite'. He also wrote Creatures of the Tropical Wastelands, and 100 Oddities found in a Car. As prolific as he is, Chris Van Deelen continues to write and produce material which will be in publication soon. Not only is he a prolific content creator, he also has a wide selection of fiction and stories! If you like his work, please follow his personal author page on Facebook and on Twitter to keep up with his latest news and game content.