“It is quite simple to spot a ratatosk living in Midgard. If you see a squirrel, ask yourself one of these questions. Is it wearing armor? Jewelry? Is it carrying a weapon or a wand? Is the fur of its tail braided in beautiful patterns? Is it stealing some object of value from you? If the answers to any of these questions is yes, then it is a ratatosk and not a squirrel.” (Lucano Volpe)
Few in number, the ratatosk dwelling on Midgard represent some of the best (and worst) of their race. Some are traditional and guard World Trees or guide travelers. Others disdain the expected role society thrusts upon them and seek to carve out their own paths.
(obsessive olfactory collector)
Background. This fierce ratatosk lives among the branches of Wotan’s Tree in Trollheim where she regularly feuds with the local ravenfolk population. Alva guides anyone to Yggdrasil who meets her fee of exotic beverages, yet she is a collector, not an imbiber, and dislikes the taste of alcohol. Alva’s love is the scent of beverages, the stranger the better. She keeps her “hoard” in her fortified den carved halfway up the World Tree.
Stats. Use ratatosk (see Tome of Beasts) but add the following new action:
- Intoxicating Flask (Recharge 5–6). Alva throws a flask of volatile liquor at a point within 30 feet. The flask explodes in a 15-foot radius. Creatures in the area must succeed on a DC 14 Dexterity saving throw or take 24 (7d6) poison damage and be poisoned for 1 minute. On a successful save, they take half damage and are not poisoned. A poisoned creature repeats the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the poisoned condition on a success.
Churrit the Destroyer
Background. Churrit the Destroyer always insists that his whole name be used when addressing him. As one of Beloved Leader Braagezz’s enforcers, the ratatosk warlord occupies a favored position among the goblins of the Wasted West. Whispers suggest Churrit led Braagezz to the Ankeshelian vault where she acquired her ancient technology.
- Disruptor (Recharges 5–6). Ranged Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, range 100/300 ft., one target. Hit: 27 (6d8) force damage and all creatures within 10 feet of impact (including the target) must succeed on a DC 13 Strength saving throw or fall prone.
(contemplative martial artist)
Background. Keerthi lives in an uneasy alliance with Ruomu, an awakened World Tree sapling in the far reaches of the Brilliant East. She bribes the massive mulberry treant with fine poetry and song to allow travelers access. The silver furred squirrel-folk follows the teachings of the Eastern philosopher Laoshi and his “Five Steps” to enlightenment.
Stats. Use ratatosk (see Tome of Beasts) but add the following: Keerthi has 2 ki points that she regains when she takes a short or long rest. These points power her martial art abilities.
- Flowing Dragon Strike (1 ki point). As part of a successful gore attack, Keerthi forgoes the normal damage and effect of the gore to instead deal 14 (4d6) of a damage type of her choice (acid, cold, fire, lightning, or poison).
- Locust Avoids the Sparrow (1 ki point). As a bonus action, Keerthi spends 1 ki point to become more elusive until the start of her next turn. When an enemy targets Keerthi with an attack while she is elusive, she can move up to 10 feet. If this movement takes Keerthi out of range of the attack, the attack misses. This movement doesn’t provoke opportunity attacks.
(spy for the serpent queen)
Background. Lutalo guards Mamiwata’s Mangrove, a massive tree growing in the middle of the Selwheyha River Delta in Lignas. He will allow access to groups of climbers in return for magic items of uncommon or greater rarity. Secretly, Lutalo acts as a spy for the Lady of Vipers.
Stats. Use ratatosk warlord (see Creature Codex) but add resistance to poison damage and a cape of the mountebank.
Background. A ratatosk with pale fur, Nanja can be found most often at the Menatayni Oasis in the Crescent Desert. For a small fee of gaudy clothing, she will guide travelers up the towering Palm of the Sheikh and onto Yggdrasil. Nanja travels across Nuria Natal, sneaking into tombs to dress interred mummies in fashionable outfits from her collection. She believes she performs a much-needed service to the dead because “they look so sad with their decayed clothing!”
Stats. Use ratatosk (see Tome of Beasts) but add a burrow speed of 10 feet and proficiency with thieves’ tools.
Background. Twisted and merciless, Turatup devotes himself to Karakhune the god of portals, otherwise known as Hune the Doorlord, by cleansing magical pathways with blood. He believes those who use magical portals and roads despoil Karakhune’s creation and must be punished. Occasionally he will trade his encyclopedic knowledge of magical portals and paths, but his price is high.
Stats. Use ratatosk (see Tome of Beasts) but replace the normal spells with the following:
- At Will: crushing curse* (2d6 damage), knock, thaumaturgy
- 1/day each: locate object, tree stride**
- 3/day each: dimensional shove*, time step*
(*) see Deep Magic
(**) this spell functions using doors instead of trees at the GM’s discretion
Pay heed! Next time, we shall investigate ratatosk adventure locations and hooks!
Until then, my friends, stay squirrely.