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Do a creature's special abilities still function after the creature dies?

I know that, for example, the paladin's class feature Aura of Courage specifies that it doesn't function if the paladin is dead. But what about passive abilities granted by race?

For example:

  • Can you take out a beholder's antimagic eye (or lift the whole dead creature) and point it at enemy mages to prevent them from casting spells (supernatural ability)?
  • Can you glue a hellcat's severed limb (or full corpse) to a doorway to create an invisible barrier (extraordinary ability)?
  • Can you cook meat from a red dragon or roast it whole (extraordinary ability but with a possibly different source)?

Is there a general rule on whether such abilities continue to function after the creature dies?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think there's going to be a general answer to this. There are a lot of monster special abilities. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mark Wells
    May 8, 2020 at 12:54
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    \$\begingroup\$ "Can you cook meat from a red dragon (or roast it whole) " — do you mean if its fire resistance still works? \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    May 8, 2020 at 12:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MarkWells There is no need to get into every specific case; any special exceptions that note their exceptionalism are clear and don’t need to be covered. The trick here is handling things that don’t note any exceptional behavior, and have to fall back on some default that does not seem specified. I don’t think this question is answerable just because I don’t think that default exists, but it certainly could be answerable if it did. This question should not be closed (unless, as I think it might be, it’s a duplicate; searching on that.) \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    May 8, 2020 at 13:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan I suppose "Depends on the ability, and many of them don't say" would be a correct answer, if not a very useful one. I'll withdraw my close vote. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mark Wells
    May 8, 2020 at 14:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ @MarkWells Well, maybe, somewhere, there is something that discusses what to do with abilities that don’t say. I don’t think there is, but if there is it’d be an actually-useful answer. Questions are allowed to go unanswered. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    May 8, 2020 at 14:52

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I agree with the comments above, as I have not found there are RAW that address this generally (only specific examples, as you mentioned with the Paladin's class feature.) However, RPG is about collective storytelling. I believe that when a PC endeavors to use their imagination to further the plot in a creative way, it should be rewarded.

One example: Using an Insistent Doorknocker on the hull of a ship to sink it.

RAW help us to guide that process, but where there are none, shouldn't we reward our players for their genius? If it works with the story and doesn't break the game, let it roll. But I remind PCs that when they pick up one end of the stick, they pick up the other.

So if your party "glue[s] that hellcat's severed limb ... to the doorway" and there is another bigger monster on the other side you are not going back.

Choices have consequences. So as players and GMs we need to make good ones.

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