You once thought them naught but mere legend, but before you stands the most fearsome Cie’th this side of the Undying themselves, perched atop the corpse of a behemoth it had slain with a single stroke. Covered in white, gold, and aquamarine crystal, it resembles a wladislaus, but you know better; such fierce animosity could come from none other than the malebranche, and horrifyingly, it turns its attention to you.
Cie’th, Malebrache (CR 20)
AC 45, touch 30, flat-footed 33 (+12 dex, +15 natural, +8 deflect)
hp 449 (23d10+322)
Fort +26, Ref +25, Will +18
DR 20/adamantine and epic and good or crystal and epic and good; Immune bleed, curse, daze, death effects, mind-affecting, nauseating, sickening, stagger, stun; Resist fire/ice/earth/lightning/water/wind 20, holy/shadow 10; SR 31
Speed 50 ft.
Melee +5 large keen buster sword +45/+35/+30/+25 (3d8+46, 19-20/x2), Unrelenting Blade +45/+35/+30/+25 (3d8+2d6+46, 19-20/x2), Peerless Blade +46/+41/+36/+31/+26 (4d8+2d6+47, 19-20/x2)
Special Attacks Concentrate, Deadly Charge, Meditate
Str 44, Dex 34, Con 37, Int 2, Wis 32, Cha 21
Base Atk +23; CMB +40; CMD 60
Feats Bleeding Critical, Critical Focus, Crippling Critical, Critical Mastery, Furious Focus, Improved Critical (Buster Sword), Greater Vitial Strike, Improved Initiative, Lunge, Power Attack, Staggering Critical, Stunning Critical, Toughness, Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (Buster Sword)
Skills Acrobatics +25, Perception +37, Stealth +24
Languages Common (cannot speak)
SQ Peerless Blade, Perfect Combatant, Strength Personified, Unrelenting Blade
Berserker’s Ruby (Ex)
About one in twenty malebranches have, instead of a normal Cie’th tear, a crimson gem called a berserker’s ruby. This stone is a 1-inch sphere and perfectly smooth, and bolsters its user’s combat abilities. When wearing this stone in the neck slot as a pendant, you are given a +2 competence bonus on either attack rolls or damage rolls, determined after having worn the ruby for an hour; to change this, you must take it off, put it back on, and wait for another hour to reattune yourself. Up to three times per day, the ruby can also be activated as a swift action to make all damage dice dealt by your next attack be considered to have roll their maximum. If your next attack is a miss, the effect is wasted. Alternately, it may be used as a double-strength Cie’th tear. These stones can be sold for up to 50,000 gil on the open market, should the buyer know it for what it is.
When making a full attack, the malebranche may apply its Vital Strike feats’ effects to the first attack made, and make the rest of their attacks as with a normal full attack.
Deadly Charge (Ex)
A malebranche may use its Vital Strike feats when making a charge.
The malebranche thrives on abhorrence and a desire to slay all that live. When this hatred is at its peak, its Peerless Blade in hand, the malebranche can condense it all into a single, infinitely sharp edge before releasing it in all its death-dealing glory. As a full-round action that provokes attacks of opportunity, the malebranche may select a single target within 50 ft. and make a full attack upon them. All of the attacks automatically hit, although none are critical hits, and all damage dealt is converted into non-elemental damage. This ability can only be used while the malebranche is wielding its Peerless Blade.
Peerless Blade (Su)
When at 50% health or lower, the malebranche casts aside its Unrelenting Blade, which crumbles into white ashes immediately, and draws its ultimate weapon from its glowing core as a move action. Known as the Peerless Blade, this is a Huge +6 keen vicious adamantine buster sword of speed, and once drawn, the malebranche uses it until the end of the encounter, even if its health is brought above 50% again. Upon the death of the malebranche, the Peerless Blade dissipates into black mist.
Perfect Combatant (Ex)
The malebranche’s skill in swordplay is unmatched; it is treated as a 20th-level fighter when qualifying for combat feats.
Strength Personified (Ex)
The single arm of a malebranche holds strength nearly without equal, allowing it to wield weapons up to two size categories larger than normal without penalty. All weapons it wields are considered to be wielded with two hands for the purposes of applying its Strength modifier to damage and when using the Power Attack feat.
Unrelenting Blade (Su)
When at 75% health or lower, the malebranche drops its initial sword, which disappears into smoke. It then draws forth from its core a more powerful sword, known as the Unrelenting Blade, as a move action. This is a Large +5 keen vicious mithral buster sword, and once drawn, the malebranche uses it until the end of the encounter or until it reaches 50% health or lower, even if brought above 75% health again.