Jahi is unique among his kind because he is not of this world. I mean, other than his animal head and sleep-inducing mind control powers. Sleep-inducing as in “he can put you into a magical sleep” not that he’ll bore you into a stupor. Actually, I find that the sole entry for “J” in the Monster Manual, IS rather sleep-inducing, to be honest, so I had to think outside of the box.
…but I just couldn’t. I have to admit that some monsters in the Monster Manual are… boring boring boring. So! I decided, instead, to take one of my favorite rules from another rpg (Dungeon World) and port it over. Sort of. Anyway, back to Jahi.
Jahi appears to characters who have just died. He speaks to them in a stern but kindly voice, offering them one more year of life in exchange for a quest of his Mistress’ choosing. The choice must never be agreed upon lightly: the tasks are usually very somber and sometimes world-changing.
A long time ago, Jahi became a cleric to an ancient goddess of death whose name is unspeakable, and for a good reason; saying her name out loud will instantly kill someone dear to you. If spoken out of anger or spite, then you’ll die instead.
Anyway, he impressed her with his stoic devotion to prolonging the lives of mortals, be they good or evil, and for peacefully and painlessly ending the lives of those who suffered. She gave him the task of greeting certain individuals as they died and offering them some more life for accepting certain quests that furthered the goddess’ interests. He agreed.
Using this NPC in your campaign
Jahi has only one use: bringing a character back to life for a limited time but with a serious task to accomplish.
On every new moon night, Jahi will speak to the character in their dreams, and talk about their progress. If, at any time, Jahi feels that the character isn’t working toward the goal enough (or, if he feels manipulated in any way), then he gives the character one week to make amends. If, at the end of this time, Jahi doesn’t like what’s going on, the character’s organs suddenly turn into sand and he or she dies immediately without any chance of resurrection of any kind, even a Wish spell.
Some example tasks include:
- Send a soul to the death goddess once per week (kill one humanoid once per week).
- Choose a friendly PC; he or she must live in the underworld for a year.
- Become a cleric of Death (replace all class levels with Cleric).
- You can go back to help your friends but must stay in the dungeon (or whatever location) until you die
- Bring down the greatest ruler in the land, be they good or evil.
- Become undead: zombie, skeleton, ghost, ghoul etc… Your stats are the same, but you get all the supernatural benefits and flaws.
- Wield the Doom Weapon (a cursed blade that automatically hits an ally on a critical miss)
- You will always forget the events of the previous day (except the details of your deal with Jahi).