Swiftjerkers

Dimunitive Aberration (Psionic, Swarm, Symbiont)
Hit Dice: 4d8-12 (6 HD)
Initiative: +10
Speed: 10 ft. (1 square), climb 10 ft.
Armor Class: 21 (+6 dex, +1 natural, +4 size), touch 20, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/-14
Attack: Swarm (paralyzing shock)
Full attack: Swarm (paralyzing shock)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./0 ft.
Special Attacks: Attach, paralyzing shock
Special Qualities: Blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 60 ft., detect psionics, psi-like abilities, share power, swift as thought, symbiont traits
Saves: Fort -2, Ref +9, Will +8
Abilities: Str 1, Dex 22, Con 5, Int 2, Wis 19, Cha 5
Skills: Balance +14, Climb +10, Hide +19, Move Silently +16
Feats: Ability Focus (paralyzing shock), Improved Initiative(B), Lightening Reflexes
Environment: Underground
Organization: Swarm (symbiont)
Challenge Rating: 1 or host +1
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: -
Level Adjustment: -

A Swiftjerker's individual silver-dollar sized bodies are nearly completely transparent and appear almost as crabs with a toughened membrane in place of shell. It stands upon six long, thin legs that give it an agile appearance. A mass of silvery tendrils extend from its belly in all direction out to five feet, rising into the air or feeling along the ground. They are only barely visible as glints in the air, being far finer than hairs. These tendrils twist and meld with dozens of other jerkers like individual parts of a single creature. When attached to a psionic creature they flicker with a vague white fire within.

Swiftjerkers are phenomenally swift, as they don't act, but react with explosive bursts of sudden, inexplicable speed. Despite this they are weak and their mode of locomotion painfully slow so that they often fall prey to predators. To increase their chances of survival they thus meld with larger, more powerful creatures and enhance their ability to react to their surroundings, making it more likely for both host and symbiont to survive.

It is speculated that swiftjerkers are partially responsible for the evolution of the Xephs, having become true symbionts that now breed true. This supposition is further strengthened by the fact that the Xeph rifts are amongst the favorite locale of the swiftjerkers, and that Xephs are completely immune to the swiftjerker's attempts at joining.

Swiftjerkers subsist on the electrical energy of their host, though they hardly drain enough to be noticed. They do not understand or speak any language but their own, an instinctive sharing of informationg through electrical impulses.

Combat
Swiftjerkers often hide within cracks or above ledges, waiting for a potential host to pass through. If they are in an area small enough they link together to form a web-like obstruction. Creatures passing through are immediately shocked, giving the symbionts a chance to join with the beast. Swiftjerkers are particularly attracted to psionic creatures, energized and fed by the flow of psi energy.

Attach (Ex):
A swiftjerker swarm can, as a full round action, completely envelope the body of a helpless creature, attaching to key muscle groupings and along the spinal column. They then thread their tendrils throughout their host's body and meld with those of other jerkers to form an enhancement to the neural-muscular system. These tendrils then feed into the jerker who attaches to the base of its opponent's skull. It in turn melds with special portions of the brain itself. Xephs are immune to the attachment of a swiftjerker.

Detect Psionics (Ps):
A swiftjerker can continuously sense psionic creatures as the Detect Psionics power.

Psi-like Abilities:
At will - Burst. Each time the swiftjerker uses the Burst ability it drains 1 power point from its host. If the host is a non-psionic creature it takes 1d4 points of non-lethal damage from the exertion.

Paralyzing Shock (Ps):
The neural energy coursing through the swiftjerkers deals 1d6 electricity damage to any living creature who end their round in the jerker's space. Those whom take damage must succeed on a DC 11 fortitude save or fall into paralyzing spasms for 1 round per damage dealt. Once attached it loses this ability, instead using this energy to enhance the host. The save DC is Charisma based.

Share Power (Su):
Any power or spell the host creature manifests or casts on itself also affects the symbiont. Additionally, the host may cast a spell with a target of "You" on the symbiont instead of on itself. Likewise, a symbiont can choose to have any power or psi-like ability it uses on itself also affect the host creature, and may manifest a power with a target of "You" on its host instead of on itself. The host and symbiont can share spells and powers even if the spells or powers normally do not affect creatures of the host or symbiont's type. Powers or spells targeted on the host by another caster or manifests do not affect the symbiont, and vice versa.

Swift As Thought (Ex):
The host of a swiftjerker find themselves reacting so quickly to their surroundings that they have the sensation of the entire world slowing around them. The new tendril connection produces reaction time far superior to the original creature's, forming a sort of neural shortcut. This provides the host with a +2 enhancement bonus to reflex saves and a +6 enhancement bonus to initiative checks.

Creatures with the psionic subtype also gain Evasion, being drained of 1 power point for each use.

Upon a roll of 1 when these enhancements would be used the signals of the host and symbiont to conflict violently. This surge of random impulses stuns the host for 1 round.

Skills: Swiftjerker's have a +4 racial bonus on Climb and Move Silently checks. They have a +8 racial bonus on Balance checks. They use their Dexterity modifier instead of their Strength modifier for Climb. A swiftjerker can always choose to take 10 on Climb checks, even if rushed or threatened.