Cecaelia (5e Race)
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Cecaeliae are aquatic humanoids which bear a strong resemblance to octopi. They have human-like torsos, which are typically slender; however, even above the waist, there are marked differences between a cecaelia and a human. They have gills on the sides of their necks, and their eyes are all one solid color. Their hair also appears to consist of tentacles. These appendages, however, are not capable of independent movement, and serve no essential purpose. Cecaeliae may have developed such pseudo-tentacles so as to confuse predators.
Below their waists, cecaeliae have powerful tentacles in place of legs. These long, thick limbs are deceptively dexterous, capable of fairly fine motor control, and covered in suckers. Even while stationary, a cecaelia's tentacles are typically in constant motion, independently feeling out the environment around them and stabilizing their body.
Cecaelia skin colors tend to be rather close to human skin tones; however, their tentacles can be any shade of color, from green to purple to red, and their relatively human skin tends to reflect this color to a lesser extent as well. They also have some amount of control over this color, and can use it to display some minimal camouflage. They will revert to the same color when not concentrating on blending into their surroundings.
Not much is known about the origin of the cecaelia race – some suspect that the latent magic radiating off of some eldritch leviathan deep in the ocean inflicted strange mutations on nearby octopuses; some think they are extraplanar, originating in the elemental plane of water, perhaps brought into our world as a part of some great undersea battle and left stranded at its end; still others believe they are the result of some rogue transmutation wizard's unrecorded experiments, creating a humanoid from one of the most intelligent sea animals. Regardless of their origins, they have been around for quite some time. They are so rarely seen, however, that many consider them to be sailor's tales, told for clout at taverns and brothels.
Cecaelia society is mostly nomadic, reflecting the free-spirited nature of their close relatives. However, the creatures do put their heightened intellect and agile limbs to the task of creating structures in the depths. These "cities" are not unlike those of merfolk and other intelligent aquatic races; however, cecaeliae tend toward dark, enclosed spaces, as they feel safer than the open ocean.
In order to mate, a cecaelia – male or female – must sacrifice a tentacle. A cleanly lost tentacle is thus a sort of status symbol in cecaelia society, with mothers (and, to a lesser extent, fathers) being revered and afforded great respect. Each brood birthed – and tentacle lost – contributes yet more to a cecaelia's status. However, this comes at a cost; with the 8th tentacle consumed in a mating ritual, a cecaelia dies. This death is a strange one – simply put, the cecaelia loses the will to live; they drift aimlessly, refusing to nourish themselves, until they die to starvation, the elements, or predators, whichever reaches them first. Most cecaeliae see this as not a tragedy, but a blessing – such cecaeliae, it is said, have achieved their ultimate purpose in life, and so have no more reason to continue. They are granted some degree of martyrdom, referred to thenceforth as Great Mothers and Fathers.
Despite being amphibious, most cecaeliae prefer to stay in the deep waters, where they are afforded full mobility. However, some rare cecaeliae decide, for a variety of reasons, to venture onto land. Curiosity is a major mark of cecaelia nature, and the most frequent cause of this aberrant behavior; some, however, simply end up on land as a result of some happenstance, perhaps fleeing a worse fate or seeking some particular prize. Whatever their reason for entering the Dry Expanse, these extraordinary cecaeliae tend to be easily wowed by the sights they see topside, and endlessly curious about the various cultures and individuals they find thereon.
Cecaelia names tend to have soft consonants and long vowels.
Male: Bolu, Rudo, Zaid, Muden
Female: Glora, Nami, Sunu, Wala
Intelligent but flighty octopus-like humanoids with a penchant for sticking their noses where they don't belong.
Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 2 and your Dexterity score increases by 1.
Age. Cecaeliae mature quickly, reaching adulthood at 12 years of age. While they can live long lives – up to 100 years – this is rare, as most cecaeliae fortunate enough to reach old age choose to become Great Mothers or Fathers.
Alignment. Cecaeliae tend to be chaotic; their own societies hold few laws, and so they are often baffled by the laws of other humanoid societies. Cecaeliae may be lawful, however, if their curiosity turns their minds to the study of systems of law. Cecaeliae have no strong tendency toward either good or evil.
Size. Cecaeliae tend to be rather short, standing between 4 and 5 feet in height. Their tentacles are quite large, however, and so a cecaelia will often weigh considerably more than a human of a similar size and build.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 25 feet. Your base swimming speed is 30 feet. While somewhat ungainly on land, cecaeliae are graceful in the water.
Darkvision. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can't discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Grasping Tentacles. Your tentacles are adept at grabbing prey, or holding predators at bay. You do not need a free hand to grapple an enemy. If you start your turn with an enemy grappled, you may choose to deal bludgeoning damage to that enemy equal to your Strength modifer, as you constrict it with your powerful tentacles.
Ink. When threatened, a cecaelia will often try to blind their enemy with ink in order to escape. When an enemy moves within 5 feet of you, you may use your reaction to spit ink at their eyes. The enemy must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw against a DC of 8 + your proficiency modifier + your Dexterity modifier. On a failure, they are blinded for one round. Once you've used this ability, you cannot use it again until you've finished a Long Rest.
Amphibious. You can breathe on water as well as on land.
Camouflage. Your natural ability to camouflage grants you proficiency in the Stealth skill.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Aquan.
Random Height and Weight
|4′ 0″||+2d8||100 lb.||× (2d4) lb.|
*Height = base height + height modifier