The Couatl are monsters in Dungeons & Dragons. They are large winged serpents (12' long with a 15' wingspan) who act as agents of the forces of good, spreading hope and happiness wherever they go. They are amongst the few Good aligned monsters found in the Monster Manuals of various editions, going as far back as 1st Edition AD&D.
Couatl were created from the blood of their goddess Jazirian after her injury at the dawn of creation at the teeth of her brother Ahriman. From the drops of blood that hit heaven sprung the Couatl; fully formed, wise and with great magical power. They live on the Material Plane in warm jungles where they are sometimes revered by the locals as gods. Those whom they deem worthy and have the right skills might be selected to be trained in the ways of Couatl magic and become Rainbow Servants, being versed in both arcane and divine magic. In return for their new power these individuals become part of the Couatls' information network.
The Couatl owe their mythological inspiration to the Aztec god Quetzlcoatl, known as the Feathered Serpent and repeatedly depicted as a winged snake with rainbow colored feathers in lieu of scales. Their alignment connotations are because Quetzlcoatl is generally perceived as the only "good" god of the Aztecs, since he was the only one who did not demand human sacrifice. This makes him pretty unique; the god of rain demands children be drowned in sacred wells in order to bring the rain, whilst the god of the harvest had people skinned alive in his honor, for example. (Notably, Quetzcoatl had the name he did because he was a snake with the wings of a specific regional bird actually just straight-up called the couatl. a bird that actually exists, mind you).
In Eberron the Couatl serve a different role. They fought alongside the dragons during the Age of Demons, roughly 100.000 years prior to the founding of the Kingdom of Galifar (YK), in turn just under 1000 years prior to 3.5e's Eberron gets started. Most of them sacrificed themselves to lock away the Rajah of the Rakshasa, some of the most powerful demon lords in existence. It is theorized that the combined power of their souls are the source of power of the Church of the Silver Flame, but Church ministers try to downplay this and state that all noble souls have their place within the Flame. The couatl who survive are righteous and guard the prisons of the Rajahs and other such sites. If they do not fight evil themselves they can use their channeling ability to empower a mortal when they need aid.
A Couatl was also involved in the founding of the Church of the Silver Flame in 299 YK, when the paladin Tira Miron and a couatl stepped into a pillar of silvery fire, merging with it. Tira became the Voice of the Silver Flame, serving as the go-between for the divine and the mundane. Around this flame the city of Flamekeep was built, where Jaela Daran serves as the current Keeper of the Flame.
Points of Light
In Points of Light everything changed. Here Couatl live in cities of solid clouds amongst the Astral Sea, based on the realm of Jazirian has on the plane of Celestia in the Great Wheel. Here the Couatl are part of a meritocracy where emphasis is placed on fighting evil and doing good. Those who succeed curry favor with the Couatl Emperor, in a way much like Imperial China used to work. Couatl further this goal by hiring planar mercenaries (like the party) to help them, with the promise of wealth and power. Unfortunatly the Couatl tend to be dicks about this and demand to have the adventurers at their beck and call, and will drag the party away to do what they want without any regard for their personal wishes.
|This article or section is about Monstergirls (or a monster that is frequently depicted as a Monstergirl), something that /tg/ widely considers to be the purest form of awesome. Expect PROMOTIONS! and /d/elight in equal measure, often with drawfaggotry or writefaggotry to match.|
Ironically, despite the popularity of lamia, couatls rarely receive the monstergirls treatment. Whether because "angelic lamia" just isn't inspiring or too few people know of their existence, who can say? That said, the lillend kind of looks like a couatl-girl, particularly after 3e gave it a "feathered serpent" makeover...