Living Shade

Shadows dance on the wall, cast by the flickering firelight. One of the shadows suddenly turns in defiance of the person who cast it, reaching its dark hand out from the wall.

Bursts of magic sometimes unexpectedly infuse a person’s shadow, giving rise to a creature known as a living shade. Though similar in many ways to the dreaded undead shadows, these creatures aren’t undead. They are a type of fey spirit infused with the power of the Plane of Shadow.

Conjured Servants. Some spellcasters draw power from shadow magic to deliberately turn their own shadow into a servant and guardian. Created living shades serve much as any other standard familiar spirit. A masterless living shade feels incomplete without a physical being to “cast” it, and it might agree to serve as another spellcaster’s familiar as long as it’s treated well.

Playful Mimics. Not inherently malicious, living shades spend most of their time serving as their master’s shadow, delighting in mirroring gestures and motion. Occasionally, they enjoy toying with unsuspecting viewers by moving out of sync with their master in small, deliberate ways. Even unbound living shades might spend much of their time playing the part of someone’s shadow, “attaching” themselves to a random passerby. Living shades communicate through pantomime.

Living Shade

Medium fey, neutral
Armor Class 12
Hit Points 18 (4d8)
Speed 40 ft.
6 (-2) 14 (+2) 10 (+0) 9 (-1) 10 (+0) 12 (+1)

Skills Stealth +6
Damage Vulnerabilities radiant
Damage Resistances acid, cold, fire, lightning, thunder; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Damage Immunities necrotic, poison
Condition Immunities exhaustion, frightened, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10
Languages understands Common but can’t speak
Challenge 1/4 (100 XP)

Amorphous. The living shade can move through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing.

Shadow Stealth. While in dim light or darkness, the living shade can take the Hide action as a bonus action.

Sunlight Sensitivity. While in sunlight, the living shade has disadvantage on attack rolls, as well as on Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.


Shadow Touch. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 2 (1d4) cold damage.

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