Berandeorc

AUTHOR: David D. (Issachar)

ISSUE: 38:12-13

 

Attributes

BRG 8 (+1)

NIM 9 (+1)

PER 8 (+1)

STR 15 (+4)*

VIT 13 (+3)*

WIT 4 (+0)

Reactions

STAM +4*

SWIFT +1

WILL +1

WIS +1

 

Defence

11

Size

Large

Courage

 

Health

17

Move

9

Renown

 

 

Edges

none

Flaws

none

Special Abilities

Armour (3), Cunning, Natural Weapon (2d6, claw)

Skills

Armed Combat: Natural Weapons (claws) +8, Climb +10, Intimidate (fear) +6, Observe (hear) +5, Run +10, Survival (forest) +4, Stealth (sneak) +5, Swim +6, Track (scent) +3

 

TN Equivalent

8

 

Description

During his stay in Mirkwood under the alias of the Necromancer, it pleased Sauron for a time to make trial of his sorcerous arts by corrupting the Men of Beorn's line. He caused some of these to be captured and brought to his stronghold at Dol Guldur, where they endured agonies of cruel devising. But when the proud Beornings resisted his efforts to bend them to evil, Sauron conceived a different plan, and wove spells to cause his captives to forget their heritage as

Men altogether, until at last they became beasts in mind as well as in body, and never again assumed Mannish form.

 

Sauron put the Beorning-bears to hard use, whipping up in them an animal ferocity that could no longer be tamed by their will. However, these brutes proved difficult to control and unreliable in the hands of his servants, so Sauron eventually released them into the forests to bring terror to the Men and Elves who dwelt there. Tales of these dark and cunning bear-creatures are still told at night in the homes of the woodmen of Mirkwood.

 

Hardy though the Men of Beorn's line may be, the span of their lives is short, like all the Second-Born. Of all Sauron's corrupted Beornings, none remain alive at the end of the Third Age. However, from their commingling with ordinary bears, a new form of wild beast has

emerged the berandeorc. Also known in various dialects as the brannorc or brannerk, the "dark bear" is a fearsome creature, a monstrous coal-black frame in whose red eyes gleam semblances of a canny and malicious intelligence.

 

Leaner and with somewhat lankier limbs than an ordinary bear, the berandeorc prefers to approach its prey silently from behind cover and then run it down in a few swift loping strides. It climbs trees and even walls with ease, and its prehensile fingers allow the creature to bypass mundane obstacles such as traps and door latches. Indeed, when a berandeorc sets its mind to entering the barricaded lair of its prey, there is very little that can keep

it out. It does not fear fire except insofar as it prefers the concealment offered by dark shadows. A bearndeorc that finds itself outnumbered by a determined group of foes will

beat a swift retreat...but will also return to try the attack again another day.