A peryton has the head and legs of a deer, and the body and wings of a bird. Although their form is bestial, perytons are bipedal. Strangely, their shadow has the form of a human.
According to one story, perytons are born when a person dies far from his homeland, when his soul is out of reach of the gods. Another says they were once servants of Ashtart, but fell from grace after killing men who tried to pick the crops they feasted upon. For their sin of not sharing Ashtart’s bounty, they were cursed to become perytons.
[my version] Finally, another version says long ago in a city called Peryton the citizenry was so good and righteous that they would not even acknowledged the existence of evil. While certainly it was an affront to Iblis, the other gods agreed that to deny the existence of a god was a slippery slope that should not be tolerated. They let Iblis impose a curse on the people of Peryton so long as there was some way to break it. Iblis reshaped the people into a horrid mix of eagle and deer. The deer represented their false love of good and peace, and the eagle imparted on them a desire to return to their own form. In day to day living, they are themselves as shown by their humanoid shadows. They are vegetarians as they would never harm a living thing. That is, until they encounter a humanoid of their former self. They then attack with the intent to rip their target’s heart out and devour it. It will then free them from the curse. However, Iblis is a crooked one. Committing the act taught the Perytons the meaning of evil. But it also resulted in a mortal sin. While their body return to human, their now true nature is reflected in their shadow – that of a horrid deer/eagle mix. Upon their death, their souls are now marked for Iblis..
Although perytons prefer fresh vegetation, they can survive on sand and dust for as much as a week. Perytons dislike the taste of meat, though they delight in killing.