Ocular Adept - Prestige Class

This is a Forgotten Realms Exclusive Class

Each beholder believes that it represents a state of true perfection. Among the desperate wastrels of decadent cities and debased explorers of the subterranean Underdark can be found humanoids who agree, and who have entered into a surgical pact with the beholder race in an attempt to achieve even a sliver of that perfection. These so-called ocular adepts, outcasts of their own society, have pledged their services to one or more eye tyrants and pledged their religious devotions to the alien entity known as the Great Mother, the deity matron of all beholders. Though ocular adepts often lead cells of degenerate cultists and fancy themselves important in the schemes of their masters, most beholders view them as self-important pawns at best, and mindless chattel at worst. During the ceremony in which the character becomes an ocular adept, a beholder surgeon cuts the central eye from an eyeball beholderkin (a tiny beholderlike monster) and places it into a partially disintegrated niche in the supplicant's forehead. A blasphemous incantation grants the eye functionality, opening new vistas of sight to the supplicant. Thereafter the character takes on a more detached, alien demeanor, as the vestiges of the dying beholderkin's personality taints his troubled mind. Surviving the ritual requires a hardy body and spirit.

Clerics who have fallen out of favor with their deity are the most common ocular adepts (disgraced clerics of Bane, whose worshipers often use beholders as allies, are particularly common), though some fighters and barbarians have been known to fall victim to the allure of the spheres of many eyes. Adapting to the psychic imprints of the eyeball graft takes the type of focused concentration common among the spellcasting classes; most wizards, bards, and sorcerers, however, usually are either too weak, too chaotic, or too image conscious to live amid hostile monsters with an alien eye grafted to their skulls.

Ocular adepts often are calculating, mad cult leaders who plot against surface nations according to the whims of their eye tyrant masters. They negotiate the purchase of slaves, defend access points to beholder hives and lairs, and accompany correspondence and trade from one beholder outpost to another. Using their charm person and charm monster abilities, ocular adepts amass a group of followers to aid them in their duties. Ocular adepts occasionally are used as intermediaries between powerful beholders and heads of state at such times when the personal appearance of a beholder would be dangerous, or undiplomatic. Rarely does a beholder create more than one ocular adept at a time, so these beings rarely see another of their kind. They share their masters' hatred of "imperfect" beholders and their "tainted" servants, so ocular adepts of rival beholders never work together.

Hit Die: d6

To qualify to become Ocular Adept, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:

From: Faiths & Pantheons

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