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Imp Patron

This is a tiny humanoid, dressed in exceedingly fine, if miniature, garments. It has two tiny wings like those of a bat and its facial expression is nothing if not beatifically charming. It wields no weapon, although it does have in its hand a quill pen and, for some reason, this seems more threatening than a blood-soaked sword…

Monster Encyclopaedia I: Ravagers of the Realms

Author August Hahn, Gareth Hanrahan, Lizard

Series Monster Encyclopaedia

Publisher Mongoose Publishing

Publish date 2004

Patron imps are residents of the lower planes, though they spend as much time as possible in the material world. They seek out talented musicians and performers of all types and offer them assistance in the endeavors. This assistance comes at an unspoken price – the soul of the performer becomes corrupted and tainted, leading him to turn his talents to serving evil.

Patron imps use their alter self ability to appear as anything other than diabolic entities. They usually try to pass themselves off as some sort of fey, often a woodsong, who has become enthralled by the bard and wishes to accompany him. Once the bard has become comfortable with the imp, it slowly begins to reveal some of its power, so that he becomes more and more dependent on the imp’s patronage. Eventually, the bard is both wholly dependant and wholly corrupt.

Rumours that patron imps serve a dark and malign deity known only as R’iaa, whose purpose is to ultimately corrupt all art, have yet to be confirmed by sages.

Patron Imp
Tiny outsider (Evil)
Hit Dice1d8 (4 hp)
Speed20 ft. (4 squares), Fly 60 ft. (good)
Armour Class16 (+2 size, +3 Dexterity, +1 natural), touch 15, flat-footed 13
Base Attack/Grapple+1/-8
AttackClaw +2 melee (1d2-1)
Full Attack2 claws +2 melee (1d2-1)
Space/Reach2 ½ ft./0 ft.
Special Attackssuggestion
Special Qualitiesalter self, bardic familiar, Darkvision 60ft., plane shift, resistance to fire 5, cold 5, electrical 5
SavesFort +2, Ref +5, Will +4
AbilitiesStrength 8, Dexterity 16, Constitution 11, Intelligence 12, Wisdom 14, Charisma 18
SkillsBluff +8, Diplomacy +8, Forgery +5, Gather Information +8, Hide +7, Listen +6, Perform +8, Sense Motive +6, Survival +6
EnvironmentAny non-aquatic, usually urban
Challenge Rating1
TreasureDouble coin
AlignmentAlways chaotic evil
AdvancementBy character class
Level Adjustment+0


The patron imp is utterly useless as a fighter and knows it. If it is forced into direct combat, it will flee. It normally uses its suggestion ability to get the most powerful of its foes to act to defend it and, if it has a safe vantage point, will watch until the fight is over. Otherwise, it will Fly. If it feels it cannot escape at all, it will return to the outer planes, though it does so only with great reluctance.

suggestion (Sp): Once per day, as a standard action, the patron imp may cast suggestion (Save DC 17, CL 5). The save DC is Charisma-based.

Bardic Familiar (Su): The patron imp can serve as a familiar to a bard. The patron imp gains the benefits of being a familiar and the bard gains the benefits of having one, as if the bard‘s class levels were wizard or sorcerer levels. The imp also aids the bard in the following ways:

  • The patron imp grants a +1 competence bonus to all Perform checks, +2 for each class level the bard gained while the imp serves as its familiar. Thus, when the imp enters the bard‘s service, the bard gains +1; when the bard gains another level with the imp still around, this becomes +3 and so on. The bard‘s caster level increases by +1 for every three levels or fraction thereof, that the imp has been its familiar.
  • The imp’s vast storehouse of hidden lore gives a +2 synergy bonus to all bardic knowledge checks.
  • The imp can cure up to four points of Charisma drain or damage which the bard has suffered, once per day.
  • There is, of course, a price. Every two levels gained with the imp as a patron shifts the bard‘s alignment one step closer to chaotic evil, with evil coming before chaos. The imp will also do all it can to convince the bard to ally himself with evil powers –becoming the herald of a dark lord, carrying messages for an evil cult, spying on the forces of good and reporting the information to their foes, spreading rumor’s to undermine a noble paladin‘s reputation, seducing a virtuous queen into betraying her husband and her land and so on. It will use its suggestion power to aid in this.
  • If the imp leaves the bard for any reason, the bard suffers one negative level for each level gained under the imp’s patronage, in addition to all the usual effects for losing a familiar.

alter self (Sp): At will, as a standard action, the patron imp may cast alter self on itself, with a caster level of 3rd.

plane shift (Su): At will, the patron imp may return to its home plane as a free action. It cannot return to the material plane for 1d10 years after doing so.

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