The Living Al Azif, Lesser Servitor Race
“It was a rectangle of tawny, limp parchment, grained on the upper-side with scales, like the skin of some unfamiliar reptile. It turned it over, the other surface was smoother, with pore-like markings and lines of faint, rusty scribbling.” – Manly Wade Wellman, The Terrible Parchment.
Some tales relate that when Abdul Alhazred penned the Al Azif, he somehow gave the tome a strange will of its own. This is true, the Al Azif possesses an alien intelligence that desires to be read, to reveal its secrets to the unsuspecting. The Al Azif, however, relies on the collective unconscious of humanity to achieve this.
Though a rare tome, the Al Azif is perhaps the most widely known of rare-books (albeit through its translation the Necronomicon). Many, despite its history and infamy, desire to read the book. When this desire reaches a critical mass among humanity, the Al Azif wills one of its pages into existence, somewhere randomly in the world. The exact process is unknown.
The page will appear as a loose leaf, in a book, magazine, or even mixed in with the mail. The page will always appear to have been created from the hide of an unidentifiable reptile. The text is nominally written in Arabic; however it will shift right before the eyes of the reader, transforming into the language they are most familiar with. The page’s evil is tangible; simply being in the same room as the fragment is enough to cause unease. The text is random bits from the Al Azif, pieces so small reading them causes no initial sanity loss. But, those willingly reading the fragment must check their POW against the fragment’s POW. Failure means the reader is plagued with nightmares equal to the page’s POW. This is not the extent of the Living Al Azif’s terror, however.
When the new owner of the fragment sleeps that night, the page comes to life. It will creep into the sleeper’s bedroom, the four corners of the page acting as feet, moving almost like liquid (During the day, one may notice the page seems to move of its own volition, as if being infrequently blown by a draft). The fragment seeks to attach itself to the sleeper’s face, forcing the revelations of the Al Azif into his or her mind. If the sleeper is somehow awakened before the fragment attacks, they may dodge the attack. Even if the victim is awake, the page will continue to relentless attack them. Once the Living Al Azif is attached to the victim’s face, the contents of the book immediately pouring into their mind telepathically. The victim loses 2d10/4d10 sanity points (this is higher than what one would lose from normally reading the Al Azif; because of the way the information is relayed, the sanity loss is doubled here), and gains +18 Cthulhu Mythos. Obviously, this may be enough to drive the victim irrevocably insane. If driven insane, the victim will start reciting the necessary chants to call the Old Ones to our world.
The Living Al Azif, the Terrible Parchment
Char. Roll Avg.
STR 2d6 7
CON 1d6 5-6
SIZ 1 1
INT 2d6 7
POW 3d6 10-11
DEX 3d6 10-11
Move 4 HP 3
Weapons: Latch 90%, damage special, see above
Cling 50%, damage grapple. The Living Al Azif will attempt to climb up the target, unless the investigator can forcefully remove it on a STR vs. STR roll.
Armor: None; if reduced to zero hit points the Living Al Azif will reform in 1d4 rounds. Only magically attacks can permanently destroy the fragment.
Skills: Creep 50%, Dodge 60%
Sanity Loss: 1/1d8 to see the Living Al Azif moving.