STEPHEN BAXTER INSPIRED DROP-IN-YOUR-CAMPAIGN FACTION FOR YOU FANTASY, SCIFANTASY OR SCIFI OLD SCHOOL CAMPAIGN.
This supplement concerns an evolutionary branch of humanity that has evolved since ancient times when it began as an all female religious order which retreated underground to survive a time of strife.
As thousands of years passed, a sisterhood cult and isolation led to rapid evolution of a society of all females of different castes. There are the drones, the breeders and the organisers.
All sisters in a hive are bound by the strict code of sisterhood, which has had such strong effects on the population over the aeons as to promote rapid physical and social evolution.
|ASE: Three 'Sisters', age 20. Like this...|
|...Not like this, you perv! These girls are real by the way, pin-up triplets all in the IAF from what I could tell in the brief time it took me to copy this image.|
Back to D&D now.
The drones are somewhat androgynous, with slight builds and large pretty eyes. The do most of the work and live by the rules of sisterhood, and the mantra, “Sisters are better than daughters”.
The breeders are selected at late puberty and have obviously accentuated child bearing features. They will give birth to one daughter approximately every four months. The child will be born in a sack of gel, from which it draws sustenance additional to that which it receives from its mother.
All of them exhibit hive like behaviour. This is influenced by cues such as body language, culture, smell and habit. Although there is no greater hive mind as suc, the culture and behaviour has developed to the point where the emergent properties mimics such a state of affairs.
The organisers are of two subtypes. The Matrons, who run the hive, and the Flowers. The Flowers spend time in the outside world to gather information and necessities, and importantly to find mates for the sisterhood. Once the mate is ‘committed’ it’s time for a trip underneath to ‘meet’ the family.
These mates must save vs pheromones or become emotionally attached to the survival of the hive as well as willing impregnators of the breeders. A failure does not necessarily mean the mate has a bad experience; if he’s not obviously smitten, then the belief is that he will be next time. These mates do not however live underneath amongst the sisters and their access to the hive is strictly controlled by the matrons and the flowers.
All of the sisters have a faint off-milk smell, somewhat more so for the breeders
For The Land of One Thousand Towers campaign these underhives can be located underneath any of the ruins that appear on the map, or heck, just put it right underneath Denethix if you want, who knows what Feretha built on top of.
For a Scifi setting, the sisters left earth thousands of years ago and have set up hives all over. They are not really a 'threat', nor are they organised between hives. Sometimes these hives are in planetoids or asteroids, riddled with the hive warren. Unscrupulous merchants and ship owners often go into business with slavers to assault these and capture a large and ready slave resource. The sisters will of course defend the hive.
For running the game: Random Table additions, cut and paste these to the appropriate random tables for your campaign.
- 2-4 Drones. If they know characters are in vicinity of their hive this will be 2d20. 0hd. 1-4 hp. They have been sent above to do/retrieve/communicate and will be keen to avoid unnecessary contact beyond what they need to do. They believe 'Sisters are better than daughters' and have a morale of 7 in isolation, and 10 against threats to the SisterHive, and 11 in the hive. Reason for being outside the hive: D6 1-2 Retrieve a sister who as run away. 3-4 Purchase writing materials, 5-6 pass a message.
- Flower1d2-1 (0=1) Flowers. These women are attractive and good with conversations. They are likely professionals of some variety. They have subtle but effective pheromones which provide a one-step positive reaction adjustment.
- Add Drone Sisters or a Flower to the type of slaves that a Slaver could have for sale.
- “There are these people see, and they’re all like girls and they all look just about the same. They’re seen every now or again, maybe they visit a merchant of something. No no-one knows where they’re from but they don’t seem to do anyone no harm”.
- “What?! You want to go to the ruins of Crystal Palace? Underneath those ruins there is a city, a hive of insect woman, you know. Probably best left alone!”.
- “Yess, a most ancient manuscript this. A book of history from some lost and ancient civilisation. It makes reference to a religious sisterhood who created an underground habitat and community underneath their home city during a period of great strife”.
- Mercs and Slavers have discovered a hive and are going to raid it for slaves. They are looking for additional muscle.