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Rolling Thunder Skeleton ESP

A thunder creature emits supernatural electricity in a 10-foot radius around it. All those within the area of effect take 1d6 lightning damage plus an additional 1d6 lightning damage for every 5 racial HD the base creature has. A thunder creature can suppress or resume the use of this ability as a free action.

Rolling Thunder Skeleton ESP

A thunder creature deals lightning damage in addition to damage dealt on a successful hit in melee. Those affected by the shock ability must also succeed on a Reflex save or be shocked, taking 1d6 electricity damage for an additional 1d4 rounds at the start of its turn. A shocked creature can attempt a new save as a full-round action. The save DC is Constitution-based.

A thunder creature casts all spells and spell-like abilities with the lightning descriptor at one caster level higher. A thunder creature can add the lightning descriptor to any damaging spell. Such spells are not cast at increased caster level and half of the damage dealt is lightning damage. A thunder creature cannot cast spells or use spell-like abilities with the earth descriptor.

Only 1 use every 5 HD, A thunder creature can fire a ray of thunder and lightning as a standard action. This attack has a range of 200 feet with no range increment, and requires a ranged touch attack to hit. The bolt does lightning damage as a slam attack. A creature critically hit by a thunderbolt is stunned and deafened for 1 round if it fails a Fortitude save. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Only gain 1 use every 4 HD, When the windy creature is wounded, its body involuntarily makes a thunderous report. Anyone within 30 feet of a windy creature when it is wounded must make a Fortitude save or take 1d6 points of wind damage, be stunned for 1 round, and be permanently deafened by the sudden sound blast. A creature that cannot hear or one that makes its save is not deafened or stunned, but it still takes 1d6 points of wind damage on a failed save. Any unattended object in the area automatically takes 1d6 points of wind damage each time the windy creature makes a wounding sound. The save is Constitution-based.

Hit Dice: A skeleton drops any HD gained from class levels and changes racial HD to d8s. Creatures without racial HD are treated as if they have 1 racial HD. A skeleton uses its Cha modifier (instead of its Con modifier) to determine bonus hit points.

Only gain 1 use every 5 HD, A skeleton can cause a black cloud of dark energy to erupt amongst its enemies within 60 feet. A skeleton deals 5d4 points of shadow damage in a 15-ft.-radius spread. Those in the area of effect, in addition to the damage, must make a Fortitude save or be inflict with the Blind status effect for 1d6 rounds. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 3rd level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 21).

Only gain 1 use every 7 HD, A skeleton can drain the health of all nearby enemies with a 15-ft.-radius spread. A skeleton deals 6d6 points of shadow damage and is healed by half of the total damage done unless those in the area must make a Fortitude save to negate the heal affect and take half damage. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 6th level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 27).

Only gain 1 use every 4 HD and as a swift action, a skeleton can imbue its weapon with dark energies. The next time the skeleton strikes a creature with its weapon, it discharges the dark elemental energy. It deals an addition 1d6 points of shadow damage against the target of the attack. In addition, the target of this attack must make a Fortitude save, or suffer 1d4 Strength loss. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 2nd level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 19).

Only gain 1 use every 5 HD, A skeleton can release a black cloud of horror towards its enemy within 60 feet. The target must make a Fortitude save or be inflicted with the Slow status effect for 1d6 rounds. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 3rd level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 21).

Only gain 1 use every 10 HD, A skeleton can release malevolence from within draining the health of all nearby enemies within a 30-ft.-radius spread. A draugar deals 12d6 points of shadow damage and is healed by half of the total damage done unless those in the area must make a Fortitude save (DC 23) to negate the heal affect and take half damage. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 9th level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 33).

Only gain 1 use every 3 HD, A skeleton can siphon magic points off a single target within 30 ft. The target must make a Fortitude save or be drained for 1d4 MP which heals the elite skeleton for the same amount. Blue mages may learn this ability as a 1st level spell (Knowledge: Religion DC 17).

pass the buck/passing the buck - delegate or avoid responsibility by passing a problem or blame to another person - this is commonly thought to derive from the practice and terminology of American poker players of the nineteenth century, who would supposedly pass a piece of buckshot or a buckhorn knife from player to player to signify whose responsibility it was to deal the cards or to be responsible for the pot or bank. The precise reference to buck (a male deer) in this sense - buckshot, buckknife, or some other buckhorn, buckskin or other buck-related item - is not proven and remains open to debate, and could be a false trail. While 'pass the buck' seems generally accepted (among the main dictionaries and references) as card-playing terminology for passing the deal or pot, and is generally accepted as the metaphorical origin of the modern expression meaning to pass the problem or responsibility, uncertainty remains as to what exactly the buck was. No-one knows for sure. To complicate matters further, buck and bucking are words used in card-playing quite aside from the 'pass the buck' expression referring to dealing. For example - an extract from the wonderful Pictorial History of the Wild West by Horan and Sann, published in 1954, includes the following reference to Wild Bill Hickock: "... He didn't wear down the two-inch heels of his sixty-dollar boots patrolling the streets to make law 'n order stick. He spent most of his time bucking the cards in the saloons..." In this extract the word buck does not relate to a physical item associated with the buck (male deer) creature. This reference is simply to the word buck meaning rear up or behave in a challenging way, resisting, going up against, challenging, taking on, etc., as in a bucking horse, and found in other expressions such as bucking the system and bucking the trend. So while we can be fairly sure that the card-playing terminology 'pass the buck' is the source of the modern saying, we cannot be certain of what exactly the buck was. (My thanks to S Karl for prompting the development of this explanation.)

If you weren't confused enough already, more recent French cards actually show the names of the characters on the cards (which I suspect has kept this whole debate rolling), and these names reveal some inconsistencies with Brewer's otherwise mostly cohesive analysis, not least in the Queens department, namely: Queen of Hearts is Judith (Juno does not appear); and Queen of Clubs is 'Argine' instead of Judith (whoever Argine is; again, no-one seems to know, save suggestions that it's an anagram of regina, meaning queen, or could be something to do with Argos. Predictably there is much debate also as to the identities of the Jacks or Knaves, which appear now on the cards but of which Brewer made no comment. Anyway, La Hire was a French warrior and apparently companion to Joan of Arc. Lancelot - easy - fully paid-up knight of the round table. Hector - of Troy, or maybe brother of Lancelot. Hogier - possibly Ogier the Dane. If you have more information on this matter (it is a can of worms if ever I saw one) then I would be delighted to receive it.

cloud nine/on cloud nine - extreme happiness or euphoria/being in a state of extreme happiness, not necessarily but potentially due drugs or alcohol - cloud seven is another variation, but cloud nine tends to be the most popular. London meteorologist Luke Howard set up the first widely accepted cloud name and classification system, which was published in 1803. The system is essentially still in use today, albeit increased from Howard's original seven-cloud structure. It is said that when the World Meteorological Organisation added the ninth cloud type (cumulonimbus - the towering thundercloud) to the structure in 1896 this gave rise to the expression 'on cloud nine', although etymology sources suggest the expression appeared much later, in the 1960s (Cassells). The allusions to floating on air and 'being high' of course fit the cloud metaphor and would have made the expression naturally very appealing, especially in the context of drugs and alcohol. Cumulonimbus is not the highest cloud as some explanations suggest; the metaphor more likely caught on because of superstitious and spiritual associations with the number nine (as with cloud seven), the dramatic appearance and apparent great height of cumulonimbus clouds, and that for a time cloud nine was the highest on the scale, if not in the sky. See for fun and more weather curiosities the weather quiz on this website.

cut the mustard - meet the challenge, do the job, pass the test - most sources cite a certain O Henry's work 'Cabbages and Kings' from between 1894 and 1904 as containing the first recorded use of the 'cut the mustard' expression. The expression has some varied and confused origins: a contributory root is probably the expression 'pass muster' meaning pass inspection (muster means an assembly of people - normally in uniform - gathered together for inspection, so typically this has a military context), and muster has over time become misinterpreted to be mustard. Separately, mustard has since the 17th century been a slang expression for remarkably good, as in the feel of the phrases 'hot stuff' and 'keen as mustard' (which apparently dates from 1659 according to some etymologists). A source of the 'cut' aspect is likely to be a metaphor based on the act of cutting (harvesting) the mustard plant; the sense of controlling something representing potency, and/or being able to do a difficult job given the nature of the task itself. Cut in this context may also have alluded to the process of mixing mustard powder - effectively diluting or controlling the potency of the mustard with water or vinegar. The use of cut is also likely to have borrowed from the expression 'a cut above', meaning better than or more than, which originally related to the fashionable style of hair or clothes. 'Cut the mustard' therefore is unlikely to have had one specific origin; instead the cliche has a series of similar converging metaphors and roots. The more recent expression 'cut it' (eg., 'can he cut it' = is he capable of doing the job) meaning the same as 'cut the mustard' seems to be a simple shortening of the phrase in question. 041b061a72


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