Farastus (pronounced: /ˈfærɑːstuː/ FÆR-as-too or: /fɑːrˈɑːstuː/ far-AS-too, also known as tarry demodands or tarry leths were the lowest-ranking of the demodands. They received their namesake from the tar-like substance they exuded from their unsightly forms and were despised by the other denizens of Tarterus.
Description[edit | edit source]
Farastus were the most slender of the demodands, standing 7 ft (2.1 m) tall and weighing somewhere between 220 to 420 pounds (100 to 190 kilograms). Their bodies were badly emaciated with elongated limbs, long-nailed hands and possibly wings. Their large, oblong heads hosted massive jaws laden with teeth. A black, viscous, tar-like substance coated their grotesque frames, constantly oozing and trickling to the ground.
Personality[edit | edit source]
Farastus were hateful creatures made angry and vengeful by their low position in demodand society. Despite knowing their purpose from the beginning of their existence, their lack of power left them incapable of fulfilling it, leaving them full of resentment. Higher-ranking demodands persecuted the farastu and so when unsupervised, they, in turn, bullied entities weaker than themselves. Their cruelty and malevolence were allowed to fully manifest when not being watched by their superiors and escape attempts by their wards were seen as enjoyable opportunities to express their rage.
They were especially irritable towards summoners that tore them from Carceri, attempting to kill them or at least disobey their orders, regardless of the importance of the task at hand. Farastus were as intelligent as the average human and when forced to conduct a service against their will, plotted revenge against their supposed master. In an attempt to exact revenge upon the world they would destroy nearby lands and enslave native populations.
Abilities[edit | edit source]
Farastus were incredibly powerful and dangerously fast, able to rip apart most enemies with ogre-like strength. They could fly into a deadly rage similar to that of a barbarian and their acute sense of smell made them capable trackers. Their tar-like secretions allowed them to stick to terrain and opponents alike, making them excellent climbers and dangerous grapplers. The tar also allowed them to disarm their foes as weapons had a tendency to stick to their bodies while also protecting them from flames and frost. If compelled, farastus could liquefy themselves into puddles of tar and later reform.
Combat[edit | edit source]
A farastu's first instinct upon seeing a non-demodand was to attempt to violently tear it to pieces with no regard for their personal safety. Despite the plethora of spell-like abilities available to them, they preferred to wade into combat with their natural weapons, whipping themselves into a frenzy as soon as possible and robbing their victims of their weapons. Their malicious savagery didn't overpower their ability to make intelligent decisions, such as wielding a powerful weapon they managed to steal from their targets.
Society[edit | edit source]
Farastus suffered under the spiteful command of the two other types of demodands, forced to perform menial chores, guard duty and other undesirable tasks for their supposed mistake. Demodands, despite the collective memory provided by their obsidian triangles, could not recall what action resulted in their exile to Carceri, but the higher castes believed it to be the fault of the farastus. Hated even by their own kind, tarry leths had a reputation as the lowliest of demodands and were thought to be weak and feeble. On the other hand, their complete lack of fear gave rise to the phrase "as brave as a farastu", that served as both a compliment and an insult.
In addition to their native tongue, farastus also spoke Abyssal. Farastus were known to lurk within the jungles of Carthys, the second layer of Carceri, forbidden from the savannah by its petitioner inhabitants.
Ecology[edit | edit source]
While farastus could dissolve their tarry coating at will, dousing them with flammable oils also broke down the adhesive. The death of a farastus caused the tar to dissolve after a minute and a new farastus to rise from one of the rotting corpses of Carceri's dead.
Appendix[edit | edit source]
Appearances[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Eric Cagle, Jesse Decker, James Jacobs, Erik Mona, Matthew Sernett, Chris Thomasson, and James Wyatt (April 2003). Fiend Folio. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 42–45. ISBN 0-7869-2780-1.
- Allen Varney, ed. (June 1994). Planescape Monstrous Compendium Appendix. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 42–43.45. ISBN 978-1560768623.
- Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), p. 33. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
- Frank Mentzer (January 1985). “Ay pronunseeAYshun gyd”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #93 (TSR, Inc.), p. 26.
- Colin McComb (September 1997). Faces of Evil: The Fiends. Edited by Ray Vallese. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 82–87. ISBN 0-7869-3430-1.
- Colin McComb (December 1995). “Liber Malevolentiae”. In Michele Carter ed. Planes of Conflict (TSR, Inc.), p. 19. ISBN 0-7869-0309-0.