Mind Flayer (illithid)

Nature: Creature
Type: Aberration
Subtype: Psionic

Alignment: Lawful Evil
Size: Medium
CR: 7

Description: "This strange humanoid-shaped being stands about as tall as a human. Its flesh is rubbery and greenish-mauve, glistening with slime. The creature’s head looks rather like a four-tentacled octopus, made all the more horrible by a pair of bloated white eyes.."

A mind flayer’s mouth, a revolting thing shaped like a lamprey’s maw, constantly drips an oily slime when it is not siphoning out the brains of living prey.

The typical specimen is about the same height and weight as an adult human.

Information: Mind flayers, also called illithids, are so insidious, diabolical, and powerful that all denizens of the dark fear them. They bend others to their will and shatter enemies’ minds.

As their name implies, they are most renowned for the fact that they eat the brains of sentient beings. In fact, they can physically suck the brains right out of an unwilling victim's skull in a matter of seconds once they manage to latch onto a target's head with all 4 of their face-tentacles.

In addition to being highly intelligent, wholly evil, and terribly sadistic, mind flayers are utterly self-serving. If an encounter turns against the creature, it flees at once, caring nothing for the fate of its companions or servitors.

The illithids speak Aklo but prefer to communicate telepathically.

They like to fight from a distance, using their powerful psionic abilities, particularly their inherent "mind blast" power. If pressed into melee combat, a mind flayer lashes its enemies with the tentacles ringing its mouth.

Origins: The sinister illithids are natives of the plane of Xoriat. They serve the daelkyr while simultaneously pursuing their own agendas. Most mind flayers on Eberron have been trapped in Khyber with their masters, commanding cities of dolgaunts and dolgrims and working with the leaders of the Cults of the Dragon Below.

In many ways, the mind flayers seem more interested in reopening the gates to Xoriat than the daelkyr themselves. The daelkyr are immortal and can afford to wait for another ten thousand years; the illithids are more concerned with the passage of time. In general, however, the minds of the illithids are as alien and difficult to understand as those of the daelkyr.

Society: Illithids congregate in underground cities of 200 to 2'000 inhabitants, plus at least 2 slaves for each resident. Slaves obey their masters without question. The center of a community is its elder brain, a pool of briny fluid that contains the brains of the city’s deceased mind flayers.

Although they constantly vie for power, mind flayers are quite willing to work together. A small group of these creatures, known as an inquisition, often forms to root out some dark and terrible secret. In many ways, a mind flayer inquisition is not unlike a party of adventurers, with each member contributing its own skills and knowledge to the group.

When a task is too great for an inquisition to handle, mind flayers generally form a cult. A pair of illithids commands the group, each struggling for supremacy.

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