Druids are a pet class, but not in the traditional sense. Where a Mage with a pet-using soul would rely on his pets to deal damage, the Druid uses her pets as conduits to empower her, making her a fierce combatant in her own right. Although vulnerable if her companions are damaged, the Druid herself is the core of her strength, using a variety of companions for a multitude of effects. Click past the break for more information and backstory on RIFT's Druid, and check in every day this week for more heretofore unseen souls.
Druids are melee Clerics who forge bonds with Fae creatures, strengthening their bodies, minds, and spirits by drawing upon the magical energies of their companions.
Where fragile Mages force their minions to fight in their stead, the mighty Druid draws upon their bonded Fae to personally take the fight to their foes. Druids themselves are formidable combatants, using their pets more as conduits and sources of power than as direct attackers.
A Druid's bond with their Fae Spirit is both the key to their power and their greatest weakness. Enemies who destroy a Druid's companion greatly reduce the Druid's prowess and endurance.
The empty, fog-shrouded streets of the fishing village lay silent. A joyful song rang out, incongruous with the terror that choked this lonely town as faceless cultists skulked amidst the huts. A short figure skipped out of the mists, nearly running straight into the terrifying priest of Akylios. Her large eyes looked up and she gulped, audibly.
"And who are you, little girl?" he said in an oily voice.
"I'm not a little girl," said Asphodel, Dwarven cleric of Tavril, "and I don't think you are a very nice man."
"Oh no, not a bit," leered the Tidelord. "You smell innocent and unspoiled, a fitting offering." The Abyssal began at once to chant a ritual of binding.
"Shh!" admonished Asphodel, and the Tidelord's mouth filled to the brim with flowers.
Sputtering, spitting out blooms, he gestured to his minions to attack, and the Deep Ones skittered up and lunged at her with their claws.
Asphodel hefted a heavy shillelagh and muttered a prayer, and shards of stone erupted from the wood. She leapt merrily into the midst of the crab-men, swinging wildly with strength that belied her size. Claw and chitin flew across the abandoned marketplace, and though the Deep Ones inflicted grievous wounds, the Dwarf seemed to heal instantly in a shower of flower petals.
The Tidelord spat the last of the flowers out of his mouth and realized what was happening. "Faerie!" he shouted.
Sure enough, a small sprite hovered in the background, channeling its power into the Dwarf who clobbered his Deep Ones. The Tidelord smiled: planar minions were his specialty. A dark bolt flew from his hand and struck down the tiny faerie.
"Dianthe, no!" cried Asphodel, who yanked her club from the last crab-man's gooey insides and ran to aid her friend.
"Enough of your tricks, girl! On an island in a sea of tears did Akylios himself teach me the profane arts! He will wind your flesh 'round his little finger like string around a spool! I shall turn your insides to... to... oh dear..." and with a gesture from Asphodel, the Tidelord slumped to the ground in an enchanted sleep.
Asphodel looked at her injured friend. "I think we're going to need Lykon's help with this." The faerie nodded before flitting away.
"I have underestimated you," yawned the Tidelord as he rose up off the cobblestone some moments later. "What force lets you bind the fair folk to your will?" He clenched his fist, and the twisting magics of Akylios wound around his arms as he commanded Asphodel's lungs to fill with seawater.
Hacking and gasping, she never took her gaze from the evil priest. "That's what's wrong with your dragons. They think everything should be destroyed, corrupted, or controlled. I prayed that we were not alone in the universe, that... there were spirits of good who would be my friends."
A cloven hoof came down behind the Tidelord, vines rushing up from the shattered cobblestone in its wake. The Abyssal turned just in time to see an armored satyr hulking over him, axe raised to strike, its hot breath blowing away the mist.
"And my friends don't like it when people try to hurt me."
"The cosmos is full of people, spirits, and beasts. The dragons have corrupted so many, but not everyone you meet is an enemy. With an open heart, and enough patience, you can still find friends, even in the planes. And then you'll have help beating evil monsters to death."