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Saragón Lyra Bird

by Jamie Baty

Fine Magical Beast
Hit Dice: 1/8d10 (1 hp)
Initiative: +8 (+8 Dex)
Speed: fly 50 ft. (perfect)
Armour Class: 26 (+8 size, +8 Dex), touch 26, flat-footed 18
Base Attack/Grapple: 0 /-21
Attack: ---
Full Attack: ---
Space/Reach: 1/2 ft. /0 ft.
Special Attacks: Spell-like abilities
Special Qualities: Bane of parasites, curse, darkvision 60ft., flight, low-light vision, protective aura
Saves: Fort +2, Ref +10, Will +1
Abilities: Str 1, Dex 27, Con 11, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 19
Skills: Hide +24, Listen +9, Move Silently +9, Spot +9
Feats: Alertness
Environment: Any land
Organisation: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 1/4
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: ---
Level Adjustment: -

The Saragón Lyra bird is a tiny, colourful bird about the size of a hummingbird. It has a long, pointy beak which it uses to prey upon small insects, especially parasites like cardinal ticks and Inheritor lice. Mages of Saragón (possibly with the surreptitious aid of an Immortal) once created these beautiful birds to rid their land of parasites attracted to cinnabryl, Legacies, and vermeil. Their attempt was partially successful. The Lyra bird reduces a host's parasitic infestation as best it can. The Lyra bird then flies away and seeks other creatures with an infestation.
The Saragón Lyra bird is usually found in the company of another creature. It is rare to see more than one Lyra bird in an area, although occasionally a mated pair will share the same territory or symbiont. Mated pairs build beautiful, fragile egg-shaped nests, covered with lichens, spider webs, and small pieces of bark. Eggs are incubated only by the female. Males are slightly smaller than females, but in spite of their tiny size, they are fiercely territorial. They will do their best to chase other Lyra birds out of their nesting area.
Legend states that "no man may strike another" if a Lyra bird is singing within hearing distance. This is not true, but the power of belief is so strong that fights will often instantly stop if a Lyra bird starts singing nearby. The Lyra bird is often seen as a symbol of peace and hope.
The marvellous song of the Lyra bird often attracts parasite-infested creatures like voats, cinnavixens, juhrions, or even sometimes a Slagovich juggernaut. Once attracted, these creatures may develop a symbiotic relationship with the Lyra bird, which relieves them of their parasitic afflictions by eating the parasites. The bird dies if deprived of its diet of parasites for a whole week.
Killing a Lyra bird will bring a mild curse upon the culprits. The curse can often be lifted if the victim performs an appropriate penance as directed by a high-level druid.
A Lyra bird in captivity will quickly sicken and die. Killing a Lyra bird in this fashion is rumoured to bring a permanent, debilitating curse.
Lyra birds are brightly coloured and iridescent, commonly metallic green or blue on top. The throat of the male lyra bird is often glittering red, blue, emerald-green, or greenish-bronze. The underbelly is usually white, although some lyra birds have a soft tan underbelly.

Saragón Lyra birds are peaceful creatures and do not attack other creatures. If threatened and unable to flee, they will sing and use their spell-like abilities to gather defenders or subdue those that would hurt them.
Charisma is their primary spell-casting attribute.

Bane of Parasites (Ex): Saragón Lyra birds can help creatures recover from the affects of a cardinal tick or inheritor lice infestation. Creatures so helped will be free of the parasites in 2-6 days, during which time the victim automatically makes their save against the disease.

Curse (Ex): Any creature that kills a Saragón Lyra bird is immediately cursed. This curse inflicts a -2 penalty to all of the victim's attack, damage, save and skill check rolls. There is no save allowed. The curse may be lifted through a remove curse spell, limited wish, wish or atonement. Treat the bird's CL as 20th.
More severely, any creature that holds a Saragón Lyra bird in captivity and kills it is immediately and permanently suffers from the Afflictions of its legacies. Only an atonement spell, followed by a miracle spell can ever lift this serious curse.

Flight (Ex): A Saragón Lyra bird can cease or resume flight as a free action.

Protective Aura (Su): A Saragón Lyra bird is permanently surrounded by a magic circle against evil spell-like effect. Dispel effects and similar magics can only drop this aura for one round, and the bird may reactivate it the next round as a free action.

Spell-like Abilities (Sp): A Saragón Lyra bird can use the following spell-like abilities when it sings: 3/day- dominate person, dominate monster, and animate plants. Caster level is 20th.

Skills: Saragón Lyra birds have a +4 racial bonus to all Spot and Listen skill checks.

The Red Curse
Lyra birds never acquire Legacies or require cinnabryl.