The kelpie is a Scottish water creature, who tricks humans into joining them in the water to drown and eat them.
Kelpies are water spirits known for drowning their victims after enticing them to follow them. This is usually in the form of a horse or person, convincing the person to follow them into deeper water. Kelpies are carnivorous creatures that will eat their victims after drowning them.
They are more often found in rivers, and are generally depicted as male. They are often associated with the fae.
Traits and Behavior
Kelpies are born when someone drowns in a large body of water. They are not technically the ghost of the drowned person, but an amalgamation of the energy of the death itself and the water. When born, they are small, and usually appear as a small, jelly like creature that scavenges on the bottom of the water. As it feeds, it grows, until it is able to shapeshift.
Adult kelpies are shapeshifters but favor the form of a horse (or other riding animals, depending on their region) or a person. Whatever form they take, they are always black in color, and their eyes are either yellow or gold. They often glow. Their hair is always dripping wet, and usually has weeds or water plants stuck in it.
Kelpie skin is naturally sticky, and can even suck things into it somewhat, which the kelpie uses to trap their prey once they make contact. There does seem to be some control over this, as the kelpie doesn’t have things constantly stuck to their skin. The effect is so strong, however, that the only survivors have had to cut off the body part attached to the kelpie.
This skin texture is due to their body not truly being made of muscle and flesh, but instead the jelly substance that their younger form appears in. They can shift and squeeze into any opening, no matter the size.
Kelpies live in the body of water they are born in, and only travel away if necessary to hunt. More often, they will just expand their hunting territory to account for their growing need for food. They have no issues being out of the water, but live in underwater caves or crevices and have fully functional gills. Kelpies are carnivorous, and almost exclusively hunt humans. If there is a lack of food, they may hunt other animals, supernatural creatures, or even other kelpies.
To hunt, smaller kelpies may take the form of a small animal or child, appearing to drown to lure others into the water to help. At which point they will drown and kill their would-be rescuer.
Adult kelpies will often walk along the shores of their home and entice people to attempt to ride it, even kneeling on the ground to assist if anyone approaches. If someone takes up the bait, they will immediately run into the water and drown their rider. Pookas often use similar methods to lure riders, but pooka are not hunting and usually will allow their rider to leave if they were able to hold on.
Kelpies may also take the form of a human, luring humans to join them alone near their shores to drown them. They usually use seduction to do so, showing no preference for any particular gender or even age. Kelpies themselves have no gender, though they usually appear in male forms when they shapeshift.
Kelpies are technically immortal, not aging once they reach adulthood, but they can be killed by various means, and at which point they change back to their jelly appearance, and will dissolve over time into sludgy pond water.
If you can get a saddle and bridle on a kelpie, they will not be able to drown you, and can be ridden safely. However, once the bridle is removed they will immediately attempt to kill the one that rode them and any of their loved ones, so this is not recommended.
Kelpies can supposedly be killed by a silver bullet or blessed weapon.