The many dead miners of the island have created ghost which, by their mutual suffering, have been fused into a single huge spirit. This genius takes the form of a vast wyrm, scaled with the skulls of the dead, and with teeth like the picks of the fallen miners. It slides through the night to the sound of low lamentations and prayers for divine succor, emanatinf from its cales. The player characters can, theoretically, ignore the spirit wyrm, but over time it will begin to wander, damaging their outer settlements, and killing others to gain greater strength.
The magi might use spells to cage the creature until they are grown greater in their powers, but the creature is very powerful, and a suffienctly powerful ward will need to penetrate the creature’s Resistance. For this to occur, or for the magi to harm the creature with combat magic, they require arcane connections. Characters can sneak into the creature’s lair, or they can set ambushes which cause it little injuries, to allow the collection of tiny scraps of flesh. The lair is the processing area by the old mine (tin is mined from the surface in strips, so there’s no tunnel here). Describe the lair as a sort of crumbling mill, filled with gears and grinding hammers, all rusted with age, and filled with the bones of the dead. The player characters may mistake the bones for victims, but the skeletons found here do not have skulls, and if the wyrm kills a grog, then it will nite off the grog’s head and it bubbles up to the surface of the wyrm’s skin, calling its living colleagues for aid.
This creature should be magic, but I’m short on time and I’ve always found faeries easier to do:
Faerie Might: 30 (Corpus).
Characteristics: Int +3, Per –2, Pre –6, Com –6, Str +5, Sta +2, Dex +2, Qik -2
Size: Stats re designed as +2 in some places, because the players are beginners, but I’m going to describe it as being somewhere around Size +4, and its wound penalties are based on Size +4.
Virtues and Flaws:
Huge, Faerie Beast, Faerie Sight, Faerie Speech*, Feast of the Dead (increases Might pool by eating heads), Increased Characteristics, 5 x Increased Might Personal Faerie Power (Constant Damaging Effect)
Personality Traits: Inquisitive +3, Hungry +2
Fangs: Init –2, Attack +14, Defense +3, Damage +7*
Constriction: Init 0, Attack +9, Defense +5**, Damage +15***
* I want them really big, OK? They are like pick-blades!
* +6 to Defense against grapple attacks
** Chewing skulls on its skin. A powerful Constant Damaging Effect
**An orm may grapple its own Size in Size 0 enemies.
Wound Penalties: –1 (1-9), –3 (10-18), –5 (19-27), Incapacitated (28-35), Dead (36+)
Constrict*: When successfully struck with a constrict attack the character is encoiled and unable to use mêlée weapons. The orm automatically does damage in each subsequent round, without requiring an Attack roll. The victim may still Soak damage. At the end of each round, including the round in which the constriction attack succeeds, the character may attempt to break free by an opposed Strength roll. To do this, they roll Strength + a stress die, and compare it to the orm’s Strength + a stress die. Success indicates they are free, and may attack normally in the following round. For each character assisting them to break free, they may add +1 to the Strength roll, but an assistant is unable to attack the orm in that round. A character unable to break free for 30 seconds (6 combat rounds) needs to make deprivation rolls, as described on page 179 of the core rulebook.
Constant Damaging Effect, 3 points, constant, Corpus: This effect does +5 Damage, but is always active. 25 spell levels ((Base 5 +1 Part +2 Sun +1 Constant)
Venomous Bite*: When the orm attacks, compare its Attack Advantage to the victim’s armor Protection (not her Soak). If the orm’s advantage is higher, the victim suffers the effects of adder venom as listed in the Poison Table on p. 180 of ArM5, regardless of whether the bite inflicts an actual wound. The storyguide may adjust the required Attack Advantage for special circumstances.
*These are natural abilities of the faerie’s form, and do not require the Personal Faerie Powers Virtue.
Pretenses: Area Lore 4, Awareness 4, Brawl 8, Hunt 5), Faerie Speech 6, Folk Ken 2, Stealth 4
Vis: 12 pawns, skulls or picks…I’ll decide on the day depending on how beaten up the PCs are.
If the characters destroy this creature, they can begin mining tin on the island. Tin’s quite valuable, but if they use their magical brazier to mix it with lead to make pewter, or coppe to make bronze, they can make evven more money. If they have sufficent craftsmen, this alone may form the basis of an economy for the covenant: at the very least it solves their lack of back cargoes.