Velsephayan Razorleaf Master Prestige Class

Velsephay is a primordial forest of massive trees spanning a spiral of Shards in close proximity, populated by a menagerie of natural beasts grown to gigantic proportions and settled by the losers of the Aelven Kinstriifing War of old, the followers of Vasrithaella, the Never Queen. The once proud exiles from Xauphinelle were left with no recourse but to adapt their lofty mien to the sometimes bountiful, oft-times cruel, and ever wondrous land to which their failing sky ships delivered them after their exile from their homes high in the Shards. In the time since, the formerly haughty aelves of Velsephay have found common cause with the younger races, and have developed remarkable tolerance for other peoples. Many humans, manx, and merren live in conjunction with them among the mighty bowers of the massive everleaf trees and the aelven branch-cities they bear.

Natural dangers abound, primarily in the form of larger than normal animals and insects; such as the frightening treebears and the feline predators known as lavenders. The arboreal dangers among the canopy of the huge everleaf trees hide such dangers from the unwary; combined with concerns for survival and sustenance it is little wonder that basic woodlands lore is considered a necessity amongst the aelves. The path of the ranger is well traveled, and many Velsephayans have walked far upon it.

However, there are other dangers to be considered, and among them are the Velsephayanís cousins of old, the Imperial Xauphinellean aelves to the top, and foul servants of the Beneath, Madragat, and Tleyzu to the bottom. Therefore, martial traditions are also not unknown. Individual Velsephayans learn skills of war and killing to protect their resource poor nation from champions of enemy nations and entities. Several warrior creeds have developed across the many Shards of the nation, some based on older teachings tracing back to the days of Empire, others newly developed since the Kinstrifing.

One such is the Art of the Razorleaf. The Razorleaf is a strange weapon of Aelven manufacture, comprised of a crescent-shaped blade lacking a haft, but instead grasped in the middle. The weapon is light and difficult to use correctly, but a trained master can wreak incredible damage upon a foe very quickly, literally shredding an unsuspecting foe. In the days of Xauphinelle an older Weaponmaster named Uolle Vhrshevan invented the weapon, supposedly to prove a point. The fell-handed aelf went thru several revisions before settling on the final dimensions, weight, and balance of the weapon. Once he was happy with its construction, he designed a simple but dangerous fighting style around it that concentrated on making many small cuts rapidly, leaving an opponent a bleeding ruin. He called his weapon the Razorleaf, and demonstrated itís use to several of his peers, who saw itís merits. Some younger aelves sought to learn the style, perhaps to curry favor with the influential Uolle.

Soon thereafter the Beneath rose forth, the Empire was sundered, and the succession was contested. Uolle sided with Vasrithaella over her brother Tallisindar. Those close to the respected master, to include many of his students, sided along with him as well. In the days to come, Uolle became one of the leading Weaponmasters among the would-be Empresses followers, responsible for training elite troops to combat the forces of Tallisindar. With limited time and resources at hand, Uolle decided to teach his new, untested Razorleaf technique. The Razorleaves were relatively cheap weapons, and much easier to teach than subtle Thinblade styles which could take years to develop even the rudimentary techniques. The units he trained proved to be very lethal against the enemy, and made for good light elite skirmishers most able in enclosed spaces such as urban areas and forests.

With the failure of Vasrithaella, those who practiced the style and still lived were exiled with the Never-Queen and ended up in Velsephay. To this day it is a popular technique, and instructors rarely lack for students. The use of the Razorleaf continues to be popular in the resource poor land due to its small size, which requires less metal than a full-sized weapon. The style has no formal hierarchy or overarching purpose. Itís practitioners are unrelated and are highly varied in their professions. It is often underestimated by those unfamiliar with it, and practitioners often use this fact to their advantage. Many foes have been shocked and dismayed by the painful havoc the Masters of the Razorleaf can unleash upon an opponent.

Prerequisites
Base Attack Bonus: +5
Feats: Ambidexterity, Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Crescent Knife, Two-Weapon Fighting, Weapon Focus: Crescent Knife
Abilities: Dex 15+

Level

Attack

Fortitude

Reflex

Will

Abilities

1

+1

+0

+2

+0

Gashing Strike

2

+2

+0

+3

+0

Float like a Leaf

3

+3

+1

+3

+1

Slitting Strike, Uncanny Dodge (Dex to AC)

4

+4

+1

+4

+1

Leaf in the Wind

5

+5

+1

+4

+1

Blinding Strike, Uncanny Dodge (Cannot be flanked)

Hit Die: D10
Skill Points: Int Bonus + 2 / level
Skill List: Balance, Intimidate, Jump, Tumble

Class Abilities
Weapon and Armor Proficiencies: No weapon or armor proficiencies are granted by this prestige class.

Razorleaf Mastery: All of the below abilities except for Uncanny Dodge are only usable when a practitioner is wielding one or more Crescent Knives (Dragon 275: Small weapon, 20gp {SRP}, 1d3 damage, x2, 1lb, Slashing, requires Exotic Weapon Proficiency, allows itís wielder to make 2 simultaneous attack rolls using the same modifier each time he attacks with it (each strike is resolved separately)). Furthermore, the practitioner cannot use any of these class abilities if wearing medium or heavy armor, or while encumbered.

Gashing Strike: At 1st level the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master has begun to learn the basics of leaving their foes bearing horrible lacerations. The Razorleaf Master gains Weapon Specialization: Crescent Knife.

Uncanny Dodge: At 2nd and 4th levels the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master gains a level of Uncanny Dodge. At 2nd level the Razorleaf Master no longer looses his Dex bonus to AC when caught flat footed. At 4th level the Razorleaf Master can no longer be flanked under normal circumstances. This functions identically to the Rogue and Barbarian ability of the same name, and is stackable with both as described on page 56 of the PHB (thus a Rogue 7/Razorleaf Master 4 would have the Uncanny Dodge of an 11th level Rogue).

Float like A Leaf: At 2nd level the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master has practiced at protecting his weapon from opponents attacks. The Razorleaf Master gains Deflect and Disengage as a virtual Feat (listed below) when fighting with Crescent Knife even if lacking the prerequisites.

 

New Feat by Ed Hastings aka the Killer Shrike
Deflect and Disengage [Fighting Style]

You are greatly skilled at protecting your weapon in melee.
Prerequisites: Expertise, Improved Disarm
Benefit: The practitioner gains a +4 bonus to opposed attack rolls when opponents attempt to Sunder or Strike his weapon, and vs. Disarm attempts.

 

Slitting Strike: At 3rd level the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master has developed his accuracy to lethal effect. The Razorleaf Master gains Improved Critical: Crescent Knife.

Leaf in the Winds: At 4th level the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master has developed his speed with his weapons to incredible heights. When using a Crescent Knife in both his primary and secondary hands and in combat, the practitioner gains +10 Movement. Combat is defined as any period of time administered in initiative order.

Blinding Strike: At 5th level the Velsephayan Razorleaf Master has mastered launching a furious array of attack against an opponent. The Razorleaf Master gains Improved Two Weapon Fighting when using a Crescent Knife in both his primary and secondary hands.