Erebus, the Penumbra
The Place of Shadow
Major Locations in Erebus
The Plains of Silence
Rulers of the Shadowlands
Denizens of the Shadowlands
The Place of Shadow
Much as with Tanis, the origins of the strange half-reality that is the Penumbra are the result of the Barrier Plane doing its job, and shielding Núrion from the incalculable energies of the Maelstrom. As the light of the Maelstrom was obscured by the ethereal barrier, the shadow cast by this reached to the metaphysical interior that is a crude reflection of Núrion, and began to change it.
Eventually, this shadow manifested as a true plane, such that even the Five Rivers have a presence there and the souls of the dead must filter through the Penumbra before reaching their final destination. The Ethereal and Shadow Planes effectively coexist, and travel between them is a relatively simple matter for those with the knowledge to reach either. However, the two are very different and planar travellers who believe otherwise rarely survive to learn from their mistake.
The Ethereal Barrier is mostly featureless and composed of a dense mist that nevertheless is suffused with the light of the Maelstrom that it absorbs. The Shadow Plane, conversely, is almost an exact copy of Núrion shrouded in constant darkness, complete with cities and ruins that correspond inversely to their material counterparts-- in the Penumbra, the inhabited settlements of Núrion are derelict and abandoned, whilst forgotten cities and lost nations still swarm with the shades of the dead and other, shadowy creatures.
For here is the most dangerous difference between the two planes: the Penumbra has actually birthed native creatures to populate it. Many have a passing resemblance to animals or plants from Núrion, but seem to have been designed by someone who only heard of the original from a dubious source. Then there are a very few, the rulers of the Penumbra, who are clearly shadowy reflections of greater entities than mere beasts, and who laid full claim to the plane by giving it their own name of Erebus.
Penumbran Reflections of living creatures are invariably stronger and tougher than their equivalents elsewhere, and were it not for the fact that they instinctively hunt and consume each other with almost mindless dedication, they would be a major threat to many across the planes. It can take centuries for an ordinary Penumbran Reflection to develop something akin to free will, and few survive the attentions of the ruling Erebusites long enough to truly mature into a self-aware being. Most will not last a year before they are consumed by another.
Major Locations in Erebus
The Plains of Silence
The Penumbran Reflection of the Summervale is known as the Plains of Silence, and is unique for having a physical manifestation of the Lethe replacing the Aeglir and Alf rivers. It is inhabited only by a peculiar type of fiend known as a kishi, and their enigmatic creator Mnemosyne who hungers for the memories of the living and dead alike. Mnemosyne rules over the Plains of Silence from her Memory Palace, which resembles a twisted approximation of the Celoth, the Tower of Silver that is the archives of Gloralion.
Relatively speaking, this region of the Penumbra is one of the safest, provided that travellers stick to the rigid protocols established to allow Mnemosyne to trade for memories from across the planes. Any deviation, no matter how slight, gives the kishi the excuse to do whatever they like. Even other fiends are at risk of discorporation should they fail to adhere to the rules, which only encourages the Malorish to visit for a change of scenery whilst on the warpath.
The Plains of Silence are often visited by jengus seeking to rescue imprisoned souls, since the physical presence of the Lethe allows them vastly easier access. More aggressive celestials from Aeron, typically a veteran officer and a cadre of trainees from the Rampage, are often brought along to serve as a distraction and rear-guard against kishi retaliation. This invariably concludes with the first death of the trainees, as they will simply reform back on Aeron and gain vital combat experience at no permanent risk to themselves.
Bizarrely, a great many bards have told of vivid dreams of a desolate and gloomy expanse patrolled by two-faced monsters that speak to them fondly in a language they have never heard before, yet understand intimately. Over the millennia, these apparently isolated incidents of typically overblown bardic imagination have been proven to be evidence of kishi heritage. It is unclear how widespread the fiendish blood is in the general population. Rumors of secret societies that hunt down bards with such ancestry are, as yet, unproven-- but disturbingly recurrent.
The Penumbran Reflection of Wawmar is named Izanaruggathol, a title that no dwarf can translate even under magical duress, for their tongues burst to tatters and their fingers wither to bone in the attempt. It is a word of power found in some of the bleakest esoteric texts that the ancient lore masters sought to eradicate or hide from the world, and even the immortals of the Outer Planes know that something worse than death awaits them there.
Save for one, no celestial or fiend that has made the journey to its nighted halls has ever returned to tell of what horror they found-- of that chthonic blasphemy which haunts and gibbers in loathsome solitude. Only the Saraf Kenyotl emerged, with the allegiance of that same aberrant grotesquery as his prize. That Izanaruggathol is lair to Camazotz, that the souls of dwarf-kin not bound for Fel-Gabul are lured or herded here by Camazotz, and that Camazotz is now a Kyreion in the armies of Bel, are the only certainties here.
There is a considerable scrying presence in the vicinity of Izanaruggathol, courtesy of the elves, who are convinced that Camazotz is the Penumbran Reflection of the Holy Swan Alfain. With even Tal-Allustiel speaking of this unproven conjecture as fact, and elves finding themselves leeched of magic if they draw too close to Izanaruggathol, their interest in keeping an eye on the happenings there can be easily explained. Were it not for the fact that their attempts to scry any closer simply fail outright, the elves would doubtless have the entirety of Izanaruggathol mapped out by now.
Tamsa Virzune, the Penumbran Reflection of Garakesh, is a colossal mountain fastness wherein the primordial Erebusite named Belobog dwelt, until he was slain during the Incusion From Beyond. Horrifyingly, the entity which emerged from his corpse was itself a Penumbran Reflection, a recursive creation of the plane and with power compounded exponentially to match. The local presence of the Incursion From Beyond was summarily expunged, turning the tide firmly in favor of Erebus thereafter. Now, Tamsa Virzune, "Shadow Peak", belongs to this Czernabog, whose motives remain utterly mysterious even to the other Erebusites. Whilst there is surprisingly little competition among the rulers of the Penumbra, and Tamsa Virzune is far removed from most other centers of power, none of his peers are so foolish as to discount the possibility that Czernabog will seek to expand his territory and influence at the expense of their own.
Nevertheless, none have yet to disclose his existence outside of their own circle - with even Camazotz withholding this fact from Kenyotl. Those few in the know believe that the ruling Erebusites are effectively taking bets as to what will happen when the rest of the universe finds out about Czernabog, and how they can benefit from any given outcome. The Kyreion Tsafon, himself an Erebusite in the service of Aknor, is believed to have originated from the same region of the Penumbra, though significantly earlier in its history. If anybody has insight on the matter, it is Tsafon-- but he too has said nothing.
On the western edge of the world is a strange town that even immortals struggle to visit, for passing the borders of Cjarssim is to step back in time. Imperceptibly slowly at first, then with ever-increasing swiftness, the years roll away from visitors - as do all memories, skills, and possessions of those reclaimed years. Within the space of a few weeks, an old man is reduced to a squalling infant once more, before disappearing into nothingness. Though the immense age of the average immortal protects against this temporal dissolution, they too suffer from the loss of their memories, and so any business they have in Cjarssim is typically delayed for several centuries to give them time to finish it before forgetting. No attempt to resurrect those who fade away here has ever worked, perhaps because they did not technically die, and their soul has not gone to any afterlife, but perhaps converted to the Ontologically pure energy of the Maelstrom itself. The citizens of Cjarssim themselves never leave their town, and vanish into the dark of the Penumbra if forcibly ejected. All memory of their former existence is instantly taken from the other inhabitants, even their closest friends and family, no matter what unanswerable questions might arise from this. Outsiders come to Cjarssim for one of two reasons; firstly, the execution of the most heinous prisoners by time reversion, ensuring that they can never be brought back; and secondly, to seek the advice of The Unseen First, said to be the oldest of all Erebusites and an oracle who foresaw all that would or could come to pass - though the truth of these claims, like so many others, is perhaps as unknowable as The Unseen First themselves. One certainty does exist, and that is that Mnemosyne curses them as Iapetus the Deceiver, and if she seeks anything beyond the acquisition of memories, it is the total destruction of Cjarssim.
Along the shores of a solid sea of black ice and fog-frost so cold each breath is a blade across the lungs, the general gloom of the Penumbra is briefly lifted by the wonder that is the Dancing Snowfields. In the Penumbral Reflection of Cadocia, a soft light covers all in comforting silver, and even the swaddling mists glitter with brilliance as snowflakes whirl through the air and living icicles bloom like flowers from the earth. Those equipped to survive the deadly cold may spend many happy hours watching this ever-shifting land, and marveling at the phantasms that their own imaginations can conjure from the display. Bizarrely, gnome visitors claim profound feelings of welcome and protection here, whilst hositan cannot shake the impression of being watched by hostile forces.
When even the Erebusites avoid a region, outsiders ought have the sense to match this caution and not dismiss it as superstition. Not since the Incursion From Beyond have any made the journey to lonesome Tamsa Virzune, and it has been longer still since the mountain range to its south has been scaled. Mere hours into the ascent, climbers experience an obscene and unnatural totality of absence, as if something has been cut out of the world. Natives of the Penumbra, bestial and sentient alike, are drained of all will to continue living as they continue, with those who go too high simply giving up and dying on the spot. Extraplanar travelers 'merely' experience intense depression and extreme bad luck, more often than not injurious or outright fatal, if they continue. Beyond a certain point, very unclearly documented, an attempt to teleport out of the Empty Peaks will result in a violent planar rift that hurls everything nearby directly into Carcus. Those few who both survive the transition and escape the dismal Hell report that they are deposited on the very threshold of Gennax itself, the Phlegethos blazing above them as it enters the final holdout of the Death God. Although it is functionally impossible to prove, certain scholars claim that the pressure of the River is strongest in this part of the Penumbra, which would at least explain the apparent malignancy and frequency of accidents and disasters which befell historic explorers here. The Empty Peaks are also the only place where rustroot grows naturally, and deliberate cultivation of this plant elsewhere is only possible with considerable magical intervention.
One of the largest and most notable true cities of the Penumbra is Laug'okhmav, the Penumbral Reflection of infamous Stor-gris itself. Whilst most such places are dominated by individual or small cabals of necromancers, nocticians, and other more ghastly horrors, Laug'okhmav is unique in that its administration is composed of seven guilds of public interest - the rebus publicae - each headed by five members of good standing. These, oft-called Signori or more rarely Maiori, are chosen by lottery on ten-year cycles, and any guild member may enter their name for selection, provided their behavior and stated policies stand up to intensive scrutiny. Prospectives must defend their position to exhaustive detail, without hesitation or contradiction, for one hour on any number of random subjects asked of them by the seated Signori - provided these subjects are relevant to the interests and purpose of the guild. Its name, initially derived from the Dark Speech meaning 'Sacred Orc Realm', is today used as an Erebusite pedigree. Citizens of Laug'okhmav, or those in the employ of a res publicis Signorus, are afforded notably greater courtesy and respect in the more civilized parts of the plane than most others. If the Penumbra as a whole could be described as a nation, than Laug'okhmav would indisputably be its capital, and when the guilds are aligned in purpose, the weight of their words can be felt from the Plains of Silence and Cjarssim to Nrul'okhmav and the Dancing Snowfields, and some fools say even unto nigh-mythical Redsteel. It is no less a place of danger and gloom than anywhere else in Erebus, yet it is perhaps the most ordered and lawful, and travelers who keep their wits about them often seem to profit more here than elsewhere.
The May Isles appear and disappear at random across the dark oceans of the Penumbra, floating across the surface without disturbance or wake, often barely the size of a rowboat or canoe, though the largest ever confirmed was a raft-like square several miles across. A May Isle can apparently be made from almost any buoyant material, be it found above or below the waves, and those who linger long enough report distant whispers and murmurs buried amid a growing reverberation like no other they have ever heard or felt. It is said that an oath sworn on a May Isle must always be fulfilled, no matter how dearly the one who swears it later wishes they could take it back.
The Penumbral Reflection of long-vanquished Rothnog is a vast and twisted land of roving beasts and isolated hamlets, whose shaded inhabitants are perhaps the greater threat to the unwary. Its name is descended from the Dark Speech meaning 'Expansive Orc Realm', and nowadays is used as an Erebusite shorthand for the least interesting or valued kind of provincial backwater (or a native thereof) that it is possible to imagine. It is most usually heard in its derived from Nrulkma, that being the Erebusite noun for any non-native of the plane, be they a visiting mortal of Núrion or one of the gods themselves. When used to refer to another Erebusite, the word is one of the more potent insults available to them, and generally precedes a violent altercation. Though much of it is essentially a featureless waste, Nrul'okhmav does boast three landmarks that any who draw near ought be especially careful of. In the mountains of the far north are the Nine Thousand Steps to Izanaruggathol, each one screaming with the voices of those who walked that path before. In the east is Utterspite Archway, the impossibly vast gate to the region known only as Hate, the Penumbral Reflection of the Wintervale and the theorized area at which the Styx presses most intensely upon the Penumbra. In the very heart of Nrul'okhmav is the most peculiar of them all, the Missing Mountain, corresponding to no landmark upon Núrion whatsoever, and apparently impossible to reach - no matter how long is spent on the march, or what mighty spells of translocation are used, the mountain remains eternally on the horizon.
When an Erebusite wishes to emphasize the difficulty of a task, they typically describe it as being as tough to achieve as finding Redsteel, and then scoffing more prosaically at the fool who continues with their futile endeavor. For being no more than a tall tale however, Redsteel is very real and no more difficult to reach than most other parts of the Penumbra to those with the will and supplies to see the journey through. It is a colossal fortress located in the Penumbral Reflection of Forola, apparently crafted of some arcane steel alloy that glows the deep red of molten metal. Those who approach, native or outsider, are swiftly accosted by patrols from its curious garrison of living golems, fashioned to resemble some kind of ape and made from the same material as the fortress itself. What exactly their purpose is remains unknown.
Even the most well-known regions of the Penumbra are not truly safe, to say nothing of the supposed lands beyond its dark seas, but there is no doubt that the great ocean to the west holds the deadliest secret of the plane. None who sought to explore this region in person have ever returned, and even the most skilled scryers struggle to see what occurs here. From what little insight has been gleaned over millennia of study, it is supposed that the planar structure of the Penumbra has been severely damaged, and has a 'bleed' between Núrion and the Maelstrom. Occultists, possessed of certain dread fascinations best left both unspoken and unconsidered by saner souls, make reference to bleak esoterica as Dagon and Confluence - and all too frequently go missing shortly thereafter, unmourned by all who wisely disavow having ever known them.
Rulers of the Shadowlands
Domain: The Memory Palace, within the Plains of Silence
Notable Status: Erebusite Progenitor (Kishi)
Significant Titles: She Who Silences, Incandescent One, Slayer of the Past, The Reflection
A Brief Overview
It is uncertain exactly when Mnemosyne rose to power in the Penumbra, or when her kishi fiends drove out their rivals, or even when the Plains of Silence themselves came to be. As far as anybody can remember, she has always been there, on the borders of reality, a creature neither of matter nor of mind, but something strange and unknowable that lies between the two.
Certain chthonic entities that lurk in the underplaces of the Material Plane treat her with unusual respect, though they do not claim descent from her. These immortal piscine horrors and psychic tentacled parasites who draw so little attention from the aberrant scholars of other races are, in return for their courtesy, gifted with unique pacts and visitations from Mnemosyne and the kishi that no others benefit from.
If any one thing is certain about her, it is that Mnemosyne is an eater of memories. Those who fall into her clutches leave as mindless husks, be they enfleshed living or discorporate soul, and may then be transformed into lesser kishi to serve her eternally thereafter. She vies especially with Mephistopheles, who delights in trying to trick Mnemosyne into buying souls that have already had their memories examined or removed.
Interestingly, Mnemosyne is well-regarded in certain esoteric circles across the planes. To these, she is a malign but valuable patron of the arts, albeit those which have been twisted and warped beyond ordinary understanding. The strongest piece of evidence in support of this is the fact that every cambion and tiefling descended from her kishi, without exception, has been a bard of considerable, if alien, expertise.
Domain: Izanaruggathol, the Penumbran Reflection of Wawmar
Position: Kyreion Apoplexis
Significant Titles: Haunter in Darkness, Razorwing, That Aberrant Chthonic Blasphemy
A Brief Overview
Whatever hideous contract permits Kenyotl to call upon Camazotz is perhaps best left unstudied, for few other beings elicit such an instinctive dread even from the great immortals of the Heavens and the Hells alike. Indeed, Camazotz was long considered to be one of the Godsliver Fiends, until even the Demon Princes disavowed any association or relation.
Camazotz is in fact an Erebusian, a native of the Penumbra, and thus as alien and disturbing to the inhabitants of the Outer Planes as they are to those of the Material Plane. Celestials and fiends alike have gone to confront Camazotz over the millennia, and all but a fraction have disappeared without a trace. Thus far, Kenyotl is the only one to visit Camazotz and reappear unscathed.
It is widely believed Camazotz is a twisted reflection of Alfain, the original Holy Swan. Indeed, the first elves to survive the journey to the Penumbra reported an unshakeable feeling of being watched by something that could not be seen or heard, and which leeched them of their magic. Whilst this theory is fundamentally impossible to confirm, it persists nonetheless, and it is spoken of as fact even by Tal-Allustiel.
Interestingly, Camazotz has shown very little interest in elves, save when they trespass, but dwarven souls are a different matter. Those destined for Fel-Gabul elude Camazotz, but not all are so lucky. Duergar, derro, and other dwarf-kin souls tainted by evil either find their way or are herded by Camazotz into Izanaruggathol. What happens thereafter is a mystery to all save Camazotz.
Domain: Tamsa Virzune, the Penumbran Reflection of Garakesh
Significant Titles: None (see below)
A Brief Overview
At once numbering among the oldest and youngest of the great Erebusians is Czernobog. In the early ages of the Penumbra, there was one known as Belobog, who was taken by surprise and slain during the Incursion From Beyond. Even those few aware of Belobog had never wished for a meeting of the isolated entity, far removed from any other of influence, and so paid no further attention to that region of the Penumbra.
Yet from the rotting corpse left behind, something new would emerge, clawing its way free of a putrescent chrysalis that none had had the foresight to destroy or even examine. Czernobog had been born out of the death of Belobog, a Penumbral Reflection of an Erebusian who had lived many thousands of years, and with exponentially greater power to match this compounded nature.
Czernobog did not delay in avenging Belobog, though for no reason save expedience. Once the local presence of the Incursion From Beyond had been thoroughly exterminated, Czernobog could rule in Tamsa Virzune uncontested, and proceeded to do so. None knew that ownership of Tamsa Virzune had passed to another. If they had, it would still have been too late to do anything about it.
Currently, only the other Erebusians are aware of Czernobog. They offer the usual courtesies and respects, and receive them in turn, for competition is surprisingly light among these creatures. What the denizens of the other planes will think and do upon finally learning of Czernobog is another matter, of course, and the Erebusians are secretly delighted by the sheer variety of options that will present themselves in the future-- even Camazotz has said nothing to Kenyotl, for Camazotz is as amused by the potentialities of this situation as the rest.
Domain: None, possibly in either the Penumbra or the Material Plane
Position: Independent, Cleansed Fiendspawn
Significant Titles: Rainbow Eagle, Serpentbane, Queller of Tempests, Guide to the Spurned
A Brief Overview
Simurgh is one of the oldest spawn of the abominable Elderfiend Ulupi. She was hatched from her very first clutch, one of many left in the dust of Carcus to live or die as chance willed, and at best intended to be nothing more than another horror of the Hells. That destiny was changed when she and her siblings were found by Tiamat. She saw them only as rivals, many being far too similar to herself in appearance, and immediately began to devour them.
This infanticide was halted by the arrival of Ladon and Nakhash, primordial dragonlords of Tanis, who were ironically investigating rumors of the death of several dragon-like Godsliver Fiends by one of their own. The pair engaged Tiamat in battle, ultimately giving their lives to distract her whilst their aides stole the five surviving hatchlings away. Much to everyone's relief, as the hatchlings grew they proved to be neither inherently evil, nor otherwise defiled by the power of Carcus.
Simurgh was never one to stay in one place for long, and spent much of her time trying to explore as much of the planes as possible, no matter how difficult it was to get to them. She became particularly infamous for repeatedly flying over the Cocytus, or trying to, in order to reach the Outer Barrier. Eventually, Simurgh wearied of looking outward and instead began to speak of the myriad mysteries of the Material Plane, making a confirmed journey into the Penumbra.
Not long after that, she disappeared. Her siblings have attempted to locate her to no avail, even bravely scouring Carcus over the course of a century, knowing that they risked true death should they be slain on that plane. Tentative efforts to track Simurgh in the Material Plane stalled at the beginning of the Dark Conquest, when the power of Vornoth began to grow in the Outer Planes as well, and have yet to resume. Whispers of her possible presence in Forntol and Cirlon are, as yet, unsubstantiated.
Denizens of the Shadowlands
Kishi are one of the few truly native species of the Penumbra, creations of the enigmatic Mnemosyne, living to serve her. For the most part they resemble some kind of ethereally beautiful and handsome elf or human, using their charm and wit to lure in prey. When they drop the facade, their skin and limbs invert horribly, their eyes drop out into their hands, and a terrible alien-like face with a prominent maw pushes out from what seemed to be the back of their heads. With its true face revealed and its nauseating 'inner' skin acting as protective armor, a kishi is ready to fight and kill.
Unlike most fiends battling on their native plane, kishi do not retreat for any reason, no matter the odds. They have been known to lock their jaws in place after biting an enemy about to kill them, forcing it to use up precious magic or even cut itself free to escape from the dead kishi. The wound created by such a bite suffuses the still Penumbran air with a scent that attracts other kishi in short order.
Medium fiend, neutral evil
Armor Class 11 (natural armor)
Hit Points 33 (6d8+6)
Speed 30 ft.
STR 14 (+2) DEX 14 (+2) CON 12 (+1) INT 10 (+0) WIS 13 (+1) CHR 18 (+4)
Saves Chr +6
Skills Deception +6
Damage Resistances bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks not made with silvered weapons
Condition Immunities frightened
Senses darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 11
Languages Abyssal, Infernal, any five other languages
Challenge 2 (450 XP)
Scent of Vengeance. Kishi can smell the wound inflicted by a post-mortem Savage Bite from up to one mile away, and begin to converge on its location with haste until it is healed.
Detached Eyes. After it has inverted its skin, the Kishi gains advantage on perception checks.
Dagger. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4+2) piercing damage.
Savage Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 15 (2d12+2) piercing damage, and the kishi may immediately initiate a grapple. If it succeeds, it restrains the target and cannot use its Savage Bite against a different target. If killed while maintaining this grapple, its corpse delivers a post-mortem Savage Bite, as the jaws lock in place and maintain the grapple.
Invert Skin. Unless it has already done so as the prelude to its attack, after any attack is resolved against a kishi, it inverts it skins for combat. Its AC increases by 5 and it now may use its Savage Bite attack. Its Deception skill is changed to Intimidation. It also retains its damage resistance against nonmagical attacks which are not silvered.
Kishi champions are the terrible leaders of the kishi. Like their lesser brethren, they want nothing more than to do the bidding of Mnemosyne. They are terrible fighters, stopping at nothing until either they or their foes are dead. Worse, they have a terrible connection to the very darkness of the Penumbra itself and are particularly powerful on their own plain, for the shadows themselves conspire to answer the cry of the champion.
Medium fiend, chaotic evil
Armor Class 12 (natural armor)
Hit Points 33 (6d8+6)
Speed 30 ft.
STR 18 (+4) DEX 14 (+2) CON 17 (+3) INT 10 (+0) WIS 13 (+1) CHR 19 (+4)
Saves Chr +8
Skills Deception +8
Damage Immunities bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks not made with silvered weapons
Condition Immunities exhausted, frightened
Senses darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 11
Languages Abyssal, Infernal, any five other languages
Challenge 11 (7,200 XP)
Scent of Vengeance. The Kishi champion can smell the wound inflicted by a post-mortem Savage Bite from up to one mile away, and begin to converge on its location with haste until it is healed.
Brutal Blows. The kishi champion rolls an extra damage die whenever it inflicts a critical hit. The creature it hits must succeed on a DC 16 Constitution saving throw or be stunned until the end of its next turn.
Leader of the Pack. Kishi champions train and encourage their lesser brethren to push themselves to new heights of skill. At the end of each of its turns, a kishi champion chooses one ally it can see within 10 ft. and grants it advantage on its next attack.
Renewed by Challenge. When it suffers a critical hit, the kishi champion immediately regains 1d10 hit points and has advantage on its next attack.
Detached Eyes. After it has inverted its skin, a Kishi champion gains advantage on perception checks.
Multiattack. The kishi champion performs a Penumbral Roar if possible. It then attacks once with its Savage Bite and twice with its battle axe.
Battle axe. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (1d12+4) slashing damage and 5 (1d10) force damage.
Savage Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 20 (5d6+4) piercing damage, and the kishi champion may immediately initiate a grapple. If it succeeds, it restrains the target and cannot use its Savage Bite against a different target. If killed while maintaining this grapple, its corpse delivers a post-mortem Savage Bite, as the jaws lock in place and maintain the grapple.
Penumbral Roar (Recharge 5-6) . The kishi champion calls to the darkness of the Penumbra, and the darkness answers. All non-magical light within 60 feet, and magical light of 4th level or lower, is extinguished. Non-fiends within 30 feet must succeed at a DC 16 Constitution saving throw or take 18 (4d8) thunder damage and be blinded and deafened. The target can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effects on itself on a success. This ability only functions when the kishi champion is on Erebus.
Invert Skin. Unless it has already done so as the prelude to its attack, after any attack is resolved against the kishi champion, it inverts its skin for combat. Its AC increases by 5, and it now may use its Savage Bite attack. Its Deception skill is changed to Intimidation. It regains 13 hit points. It also retains its damage immunities against nonmagical attacks which are not silvered.