This small creature is covered with cat-like fur and has a wide and equally cat-like grin. Its yellow eyes are bright and intelligent. It moves with surprising speed. Most alarmingly of all, it has an elegant top-hat.
Monster Encyclopaedia I: Ravagers of the Realms
Author August Hahn, Gareth Hanrahan, Lizard
Series Monster Encyclopaedia
Publisher Mongoose Publishing
Publish date 2004
Phouca – or pooka, or pucks, or even the Phouca/pooka/ puck, depending on their moods – are a race of fey tricksters. While nominally loyal to the nobility of faerie, phouca are drawn to the edges of the eternal summerland, to the fields of men. They are endlessly fascinated with mortality in all its forms, from birth to death. This fascination has its roots both in the phoucas’ natural immortality and in their ability to manipulate the flow of time.
Sometimes, a phouca will aid some old widow living alone on the edge of the wildwood, doing all her housework in the blink of an eye just so it can watch her age. In other moods, a phouca will trick a party of adventurers into a death-trap just to watch them die before their time. They are mercurial creatures; one moment a phouca is a friendly, jolly scamp; in the next, it has stolen your infant child out of the cradle and led a band of hungry ogres to your door. To the phouca, consequences are largely irrelevant – they have all eternity to play, so why worry about the effects of one action out of a billion billion?
The phoucas’ prodigious ability to control time makes them very interesting test subjects to wizards and scholars. No sage has yet determined how the fey manipulate the temporal flow, but it has been suggested that they can use their own immortality as a power source; a phouca wishing to complete a day’s work in an hour draws time from its own future. The work is done in an hour but the phouca now has a debt of energy that will be paid by lazing around for a full day sometime in the future. Even if this theory has any truth in it, the phouca are not talking. They keep their secrets close.
|Small fey (Chaotic)|
|Hit Dice||6d6 (21 hp)|
|Speed||30 ft. (6 squares)|
|Armour Class||16 (+1 size, +3 Dexterity, +2 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 13|
|Attack||Claw +3 melee (1d4-1) or shortbow +7 ranged (1d6)|
|Full Attack||Claw +3 melee (1d4-1) or shortbow +7 ranged (1d6)|
|Space/Reach||5 ft./5 ft.|
|Special Qualities||Damage reduction 5/cold iron, low- light vision, time manipulation|
|Saves||Fort +2, Ref +9, Will +8|
|Abilities||Strength 8, Dexterity 16, Constitution 11, Intelligence 14, Wisdom 15, Charisma 13|
|Skills||Balance +7, Bluff +10, Climb +4, Craft (any one) +4, Diplomacy +14, Disable Device +5, Disguise +3, Forgery +4, Gather Information +3, Hide +9, Jump +3, Listen +5, Move Silently +10, Open Lock +5, Perform (jester) +6, Sense Motive +4, Sleight of Hand +9, Spot +5, Survival +4, Tumble +8, Use Magic Device +3, Rope Use+5|
|Feats||Dodge, Negotiator, Stealthy|
|Advancement||By character class|
Fighting a phouca is a frustrating experience, thanks to its time-warping powers. While they find it difficult to control time around others directly, they can easily vanish using their powers. They are generally armed with small hunting bows, which they use to catch rabbits and other small woodland creatures. Phouca have even been seen
eating sprites and pixies and cavorting with Ghouls and wights; the creatures are among the darker fey.
Time Manipulation (Su): A phouca’s power to control time allows it to create any of the following effects:
Slow: Once per day, a phouca may cast slow (save DC 15).
Haste: Once per day, a phouca may cast haste. By making a touch attack, a phouca may attempt to artificially age a target. The victim must make a Fortitude save (DC 13); if this save is failed, the target ages 1d3 age categories. This magical age slips away after 24 hours. A character cannot be aged past venerable using this ability. This power can be used once per day and its effects can be removed using break enchantment. By making a touch attack, a phouca may attempt to artificially reduce the age of a target. The victim must make a Fortitude save (DC 13); if this save is failed, the target’s age is reduced by 1d3 age categories. This magical age slips away after 24 hours. A character cannot be aged past childhood using this ability. This power can be used once per day and its effects can be removed using break enchantment.
Full Day’s Work: One per day, a phouca can complete a single task that would normally take one day in one round. This is essentially a variation on time stop; the phouca cannot interact with other creatures while using this ability, nor may it attack. It may not cast spells and cannot Craft magical items using this ability but can Craft non-magical items during this ‘day’. The phouca cannot rest during the ‘day’. It may travel if it wishes. All that the phouca does during the ‘day’ must be part of a single task – a phouca could walk twenty miles to a city to deliver a message in a single round, but it could not look for another character while at the city.