Hollow Dragon

A hollow dragon (draconem cavum) is a construct made from an empty shell of a metallic dragon's scales and hide animated by powerful magic and the dragon's essence.

Unlike evil chromatic dragons, which turn to the magic of shadow and undeath to prolong their existence, metallic dragons use elemental magic to become eternal guardians of great treasures, ancient artifacts, and holy sites. A hollow dragon lacks bones and organs. Draconic essence and elemental power leak, glowing, from its mouth and eyes, from between its scales, and from runes carved into its scales. The flesh might wither, but the magic, the draconic essence, and the scales endure.

A hollow dragon's attacks have a damage type based on the kind of dragon it was when alive. For instance, gold hollow dragons have fire-based attacks, but those of a steel hollow dragon would be force-based.

Lore


The essence of a formerly living dragon animates the otherwise empty hide of a hollow dragon. Dragons that seek immortality but do not want to become dracoliches become hollow dragons. Only a few spellcasters and worshipers of draconic deities know the process to create hollow dragons.

Hollow dragons keep to themselves. Though they do not need to eat, old or evil ones might become so far removed from the living that they lose all empathy and become violent predators.

Tactics


A hollow dragon fights up close, allowing enemies to surround it so that it has many targets. It makes multiple melee attacks each round and uses breath of power as soon as it can catch several foes with it. It mauls targets with bites and tail slaps and then launches breath of power in the same round by spending an action point. When bloodied, it spends a second action point and fights to the death. It uses breath of power even if it has a foe swallowed, unless it has a limited number of targets nearby.

The Hollow Transformation


The Cavum Transformationis is a ritual that unbinds the elemental energy present in a dragon. If performed correctly, it reshapes the subject into an eternal channel for energy funneled directly from the elemental planes. The particulars of the ritual of transformation are widespread among metallic dragons, but known to few others.

Physical Effects

When a dragon undergoes the Cavum Transformationis, it lets its internal elemental forces consume its entire body. It endures tremendous pain as every bit of its flesh disintegrates. leaving only a core of vibrant energy contained within a shell of metal scales. Dragons in twilight might be the most desperate to prolong their lives, but also run the greatest risk. The transformation can rend a weaker dragon, causing the creature to explode in a flash of elemental energy. Though the dragon retains much t of its former knowledge and personality, it no longer has the magical attributes of its former body. A hollow dragon can no longer shapeshift, nor can a formerly agile dragon move as quickly as it could In life. The transformation even robs the dragon of its frightful presence.

Mental Repercussions

Few metallic dragons are willing to become hollow dragons. partly because the practice of transformation has a bad reputation. The number of stories of dragons driven mad by the pain of transformation or rent asunder by the force of the Cavum Transformationis are too numerous. Still. the transformation is less risky than transforming into a dracolich. Even those who make it through find their personalities change over time. They grow less and less familiar with the mindset of the living. Without needing to eat. sleep, mate. or fulfill other biological needs. hollow dragons develop a different sense of time, and become inscrutable to normal mortals.

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