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A hellborn shadow is a tiefling ranger who has learned to tap into his or her fiendish heritage as a way to enhance their natural abilities. Instead of turning away from their ancestry, hellborn shadows embrace it, for good or evil, and use it to battle the supernatural threats they face, becoming dark and often feared monster slayers. The brings hellborn shadows dangerously close to the evil taint that haunts them, sometimes blurring the line between good and evil.
Hellborn shadows, like most tieflings, often face a great degree of prejudice and misunderstanding from others. However, this prejudice is intensified by the fact that they willingly embrace their inner darkness, often using the very fear they evoke as a weapon. While all tieflings have supernatural qualities, hellborn shadows push these to their limits, using ancient knowledge or natural ability to enhance their combat prowess and to even transform themselves into a fiend-like form. Such power does not come without a cost, however, and a fair number of hellborn shadows give in to the evil urges that their abilities bring, though others manage to fight them off.
Hellborn shadows, in spite of their undeniably supernatural abilities, draw solely on their own innate potential rather than magic, tapping into the fiendish heritage from which they derive. This includes several unsavory abilities, such as a hellborn shadow's ability to heal them through drawing on the life-force of an enemy or the ability to immolate their attacks in flames. Similarly, hellborn shadows of a certain degree of experience can learn how to strip away the defenses of their foes, making them all the more vulnerable to their deadly strikes.
Hellborn shadow exploits are similarly "natural" abilities, although very definitely extraordinary spell-like in their effects. Even relatively inexperienced hellborn shadows, for instance, are capable of the wings of devilry exploit, which causes the tiefling to sprout two fiendish wings. A more advanced exploit is balefire scourge, which causes the dual weapons of a hellborn shadow to burst into scorching flames.