A floating humanoid skull, with eight spinal columns dangling beneath it, drifts silently through the moonless night.

Octospine (CR 5; XP 1,600)
CE Medium undead
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., lifesense 60 ft.; Perception +1
AC 20, touch 12, flat-footed 18
(+2 Dex, +8 natural)
hp 51 (6d10+18)
Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +6
DR 5/good or lawful; Immune undead traits
Speed 40 ft.; fly 80 ft. (perfect)
Melee 8 tentacles +7 (1d4+3), bite +7 (1d6+3)
Special Attacks blood drain (1d3 Con), constrict (1d4+4), death rattle
Str 16, Dex 14, Con —, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 16
Base Atk +4; CMB +7 (+11 grapple); CMD 19 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Improved Initiative
Skills Fly +10, Intimidate +12, Perception +10, Stealth +11
Languages up to eight
Environment ruins, underground
Organization solitary or cohort (2–5)
Treasure standard
Special Abilities
Death Rattle (Su) As a full-round action, the octospine can shake all of its tentacles and emit a fearful howl. This is a sonic, mind-affecting, fear attack. All within 60 ft. of the octospine must make a Will save (DC 16) or become frightened for 2d6 turns. The save DC is Charisma-based.

The octospine is a hideous creature, believed to be the creation of a demon lord. It consists of a skull, usually humanoid, beneath which dangle eight spinal columns, all growing from the base of the skull. While it can skitter along the ground on these bony limbs, it prefers to glide silently through the air. It is a skilled hunter and stalker and it prefers to attack from ambush.

The octospine is free-willed, but usually has some purpose which was assigned to it by a more powerful being. They are often employed as guardians of tombs, necromantic labs or unholy temples. Normally, they will lurk out of sight and watch as beings enter their territory; if the intruders pass a particular point without speaking a pass phrase, making a gesture or revealing some sign or symbol, the octospine will attack. Octospines are too intelligent to be easily fooled by thrown rocks and will ignore normal animals and similar minor entities unless they had been explicitly instructed otherwise. Octospines remember little or nothing of their time as living beings. Since they are composed of no fewer than eight corpses, what few memories they have are confused and often contradictory.

On Porphyra
Octospines are a particularly favored personal bodyguard in the Empire of the Dead, especially when an intelligent undead ambassador is traveling in the lands of the often-hostile living. They can additionally be used as translators, due to their multiple construction and language abilities.