Completed A Monstrous Education Pt II

Taz seeks more information about more modern monsters.

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:06 am

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38th of Spring, 522 A.V. ~ Evening




“So, you said there were other creatures.” Tazrae said, dipping her quill in its ink to be able to write more. “What did you mean by that?” She continued to question, certain that the two men knew more than they were letting on.

Mathias nodded. “We ran into the first kind when we settled here. We slaughtered all we could find and it was the Svefra that told us what they were later. Evidently, the Myrians keep them as pets in Taloba… guardians of their children. They are called Riamm and they look like small balls of brightly colored fur. They are able to bond closely with people – namely children – and develop a close and very personal relationships. In Taloba, the children wear them around on their heads. They only bond to one child and the Myrians consider them playful, friendly, and cuddly. However, they are far from it. And if strangers even dare to threaten the child a Riamm is bonded too, they turn fierce.” The founder explained.

“They come in all colors, some very bright. They were discovered and written about only after the Valterrian. It was said they arose from a pool of wild magic. The Myrian’s captured them, restrained them to observe them, and then eventually brought them back for their kids.” He added.

Taz kept writing, copying what he said down on paper, making sure she understood what Mathias was saying.

“It was said Myra herself approved of them and deemed them ruthless enough to be a Myrian pet. They have, as far as we can tell, waterproof fur… which is why the children like wearing them as hats. And they have a mouth full of sharp teeth. They live between five and seven years, and will eat just about anything organic. We did note while studying them though that the brighter the food they got the brighter their fur became. I think we’ve seen them as red, blue, green, yellow, and orange… and reportedly purple. So, like we said bright primary colors. We got them to eat fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, insects, crustations, and they’d gnaw on their captors if they weren’t fed fast enough.” He added.

“They vocalize by a series of cute noises, things like chittering, cooing, and purring. They seem affectionate to those they decide to like and extremely loyal to those they love. They are extremely aggressive to those that threaten the ones they are bonded to.” Xander added.

Tazrae asked them both a question. “What about reproduction? How do you tell a male and female apart, etc.?” She asked, curious. So far no one had described eyes on the creature or any discernable feature besides a mouth.

Mathias answered this one. “There’s virtually no sexual dimorphism between the two sexes. Females are usually discovered to be female when they have a litter. The Myrians might know better, but we couldn’t tell. They have babies between two and four years old and maybe have two or three ‘pups’ per litter. I think they only have a couple of liters during their lifetime.” He added, shaking his head.


Last edited by Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:31 am

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“So why did you eradicate them? If the Myrians keep them as pets and give them to their children they don’t seem all that bad?” Taz asked, curious.

Xander laughed. “When he says they are extremely aggressive, he means it. They will tear into any stranger unprovoked and if anyone threatens anyone, they are bonded too…. they will not hesitate to kill. They might be fur balls the size of a ball you’d give a child to kick around, but they can chew through a grown man’s leg without hesitation and in a chime or less.” He added, shaking his head. “I’ve seen them up close, and believe me, there’s no way I’d give one to a child. Especially my child. If I disciplined that child for breaking a rule, doing something dangerous, backtalking his mother, etc…. the Riamm would likely attack me and try and kill me. It’s ridiculous how violent and protective they are.” He said softly. “And those unbonded? You are just a victim waiting to happen because then they have no loyalty at all.” He supplied, finishing filling out Tazrae’s ideas about what these creatures were.

She finished putting those thoughts onto paper and flushing out what she dubbed her ‘Riamm’ section. She left a space for a little sketch by the description. She’d like to see one for herself, but it sounded like the men had left none alone… at least not around here.

When she was sufficiently caught up, Taz glanced up at both of them. “I appreciate all this information. I’m making something of a monster manual that I’m tracking what some of these things are within its pages in case we ever run into any of them around here. I keep meeting monsters, right and left, and adding what I know to these pages. So, it’s going to not only help me but others later on. You told me about Wailers and Riamm. Do you know of any others?” She asked, probing them both deeper… wanting more.

Mathias nodded. “Of course. The one best example I can think of is the Nuzem.” He said looking thoughtful.

Xander chuckled. “For this portion of our tale, we must travel to the Sea himself.” The bard intoned, and Taz grinned. She settled back to smile, starting a completely new entry in her journal. “Nuzem are completely and utterly devastated octopus that were horribly altered by the wild djed storms that swept out to sea. Creatures beneath the weaves weren’t unaffected. The water was no shelter for them. They have giant bodies and existed before the Valterrian. You’ve heard of Sahova, right? If you were researching Monsters, it had to come up.” He added, asking Tazrae as she wrote.

Taz glanced up and nodded. “Island of the Undead, near Nyka, full of Nuit and followers of Uldr. They are practically immortal there and established the place ten years before the Valterrian which people don’t think was a coincidence because of the timing.” She added.

Mathias took it from there. “Exactly. The Wizards of Sahova found a giant octopus an amazing creature to study and ideal for magical manipulation. It already had camouflage ability and could ink people at will. It was considered lethal in its natural form. They channeled massive amounts of djed through its body and made them smarter, larger, that sort of thing. They magically split the ends of the Nuzen’s tentacles into hundreds of small powerful tendrils which left the octopus more able to manipulate objects. They actually enjoy more dexterity than say we do with opposable thumbs.” Mathias added.


Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
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Tazrae
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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:33 am

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Taz frowned. “Why would they do that?” She asked, brow furrowed. Not only did it sound painful and cruel, but pointless.

Xander shook his head. “Nuits are lazy. Why do it for themselves when they can spend a great deal of time crafting creatures that can do for them? I suspect they wanted a slave race to serve them.” He added.

The oldest founder nodded his agreement. “True. I think that’s exactly what they wanted. Whether some got released into the wild or they were deliberately seeded, I don’t know. But within a year, perhaps under that, they were attacking ships near Sahova and guarding the Island.

Taz looked thoughtful. “Did they make them sentient?” She asked.

Xander shook his head. “Octopus is incredibly smart already. I suspect they made them slightly smarter than an average dog or cat… that kind of thing.” He supplied. “I suppose you could befriend one easily enough, maybe even keep it as a pet. That seems to be what they were trying to do.” He added. “And from what we know, the years just before the Valterrian saw them thriving.” He added, shaking his head. “Bards wrote songs about them… around that time too. I’ve heard them, though I have no copies.” He spoke.

“Everyone assumed the Valterrian ended their species… and their modified species via the Nuit.” Mathias said, then went on to explain. “No one saw them. They were very busy surviving though, people I mean, and no one would go out to sea because the djed storms were so frequent and devastating.” He added, shaking his head. “We were so wrong. What came of them via the djed storms was something truly horrific.” The Founder said.

“What came out was a vaguely octopi’s monster that was between thirty-five and forty feet long. They can be upwards of three hundred or four hundred pounds. They change color like their origin species, so they can be any color or pattern… they can look like the wood of the ship they wrap around to eat. They are normally a sort of peachy blotchy grey color and they have a huge mantle… they need it to digest some of the other monsters in the ocean they consume. “They’ve been witness eating small sharks, small whales, dolphins… and yet still loving their clams and crabs. They have no bones, so they are masters of contortion. That means they can squish into places half or less than their size.” He explained.

Tazrae looked thoughtful. “To be honest… I know nothing about Octopus.” Taz admitted.

Xander grinned. “I didn’t either until I heard about these. They have a huge beak nestled down in all those tentacles. And they use them to crush their prey. They can generate tremendous force and snap bones, wood, cartilage, and almost anything even metal. They simply chew up their food. They move by forcing water through their bodies. And by undulating their tentacles. They also can shoot ink. Nuzem ink is magical, it's said, and most mages prefer it for their journaling. I suspect it's very rare a Nuzem is slain though, and perhaps it might take a powerful mage to do so.” The bard added, shaking its head.



Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
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Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:37 am

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Taz wasn’t sure there was any answer to this question but she asked it anyhow. “Do we know anything about their reproduction or behavior?” She wanted to know. Maybe there was or maybe there wasn’t.

Mathias shrugged. “We humans keep seeing them. They must be reproducing. With Octopus, the males will breed and die. The females will starve guarding their eggs and eventually die…. But when the eggs hatch there are hundreds of them. I expect the Nuit didn’t change that about the Nuzem. That would mean they would be sexually mature after a few years, but who knows how long they can truly live if they don’t breed. I absolutely believe the fact and figures about their size and intelligence. So, they must have a functional breeding population. We can also assume they are territorial and solitary like the octopus. They are most likely nocturnal since the Octopi are. We think they are mostly around Sahova and Mura. The Konti in fact is the biggest source of our information about them. You might ask one if you have a chance to meet one.” He said, looking thoughtful. “We need more Konti here in Syka.” He threw in, almost as an aside.

Taz nodded her agreement. “Especially in dealing with water things.” She added, then looked thoughtful. “Something like that… what eats them? Or are they at the top of the food chain besides Laviku’s children?” She added, knowing most of them were bigger than these creatures.

Xander piped in. “Toothed whales. Killer whales. Big sharks. There are so extremely large sharks out there. “ He added. “And man.” The last was more than an afterthought. “The Svefra hunt them like a sport when they find them. They eat them too.” He added.

Taz looked at him sharply. “How do we know whales and sharks eat them?” She asked, curious.

“Mura has stories of tentacles washing up severed by what looks like a shark bite or whale tearing them off. Remember their tentacles end in smaller tentacles and those tentacles have smaller tentacles, sometimes upwards of a hundred on the end of their limbs.” He replied, making perfect sense to Tazrae. “Very distinctive.” He added to Tazrae’s nod.

“So, these are big creatures, intelligent, territorial and live on the other side of the world as far as we know?” She summed up, writing them off in her head as not too critical to Syka while the Riamm definitely was. They were here, very real, and not nearly the threat of an Octopus that size, she found them more relevant to their circumstances. “Got it,” Taz said, then looked at both and asked them one more question. “I hear talk of the term Wild Djed all the time. And one can make certain assumptions about it. But do either of you know what it actually is?” Taz said softly, curiously, wondering what in the world generated so much power that caused Djed to be so profuse.

Both men glanced at each other, but it was Mathias that finally spoke. “I’m no mage… but I’ve been around them a lot. I live in this world and have experienced a lot, including Djed Storms themselves. And I’ll tell you what I think it is. Xander can agree or agree to disagree as he likes.” Mathias added.

“But I think Mizahar is alive, much like you and I are alive. And I think she produces the Djed herself. Sometimes its purposed and mountain ranges are being built or other things are being done… new rivers setting course across former deserts. Oceans being created or destroyed… landmasses moving around. It all seems sentient, inter-related, or somehow linked. The Valterrian was deadly to Mizahar. It almost killed her. Ivak was rough and in a way, we can draw parallels to our own blood and Mizahar’s Wild Djed. I think there are times Mizahar bleeds power like we bleed blood… especially when she’s wounded. Djed storms are like that. I also think she can build up too much power and need to release it so it comes off like … well like when a teenager develops a huge whitehead pimple and pops it. The Wild Djed is like the pus getting forcefully expelled like in a djed storm.” He said looking thoughtful.



Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:45 am

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Taz listened carefully, started a new section in her journal, but was otherwise quiet. She wrote frantically, taking notes, as Mathias spoke. “So, mages have the ability to capture Wild Djed and purpose it. Wild Djed itself can randomly purpose itself too… or maybe there is some design behind it… like it is only doing Mizahar’s bidding. Either way, new things are created through Wild Djed and existing things are repurposed and reworked. I believe, always, there is some grand design behind it. I also think that sometimes there is beauty in the random, and she lets things happen randomly as well.” He added.

Xander nodded. “That’s about the description I’d give too… from what all the tales say and what mages have personally told me there’s nothing to think otherwise. It’s a powerful thing if you can capture it, purpose it, and reuse it. But from what I understand, as it travels the land it gains its own purpose often times and, in that purpose, it can be very destructive. It’s almost like the unpurposed wild djed demands a purpose and if it doesn’t get one, fury becomes its purpose.” The bard added, shaking his head.

Taz nodded. “I don’t think that’s something I’d even remotely try. I’m not much of a mage yet… may never will be. But I am good at other things, and will keep embracing those faucets of my personality.” She added.

Mathias nodded. “Speaking of which. I’m glad you came tonight with your questions. I have something for you. Xander gave it to me a long time ago, for safe keeping, with the permission to give it to someone else if someone fitting came along. We… run across a lot of odd things in our travels.” He added, rose, and slipped into his home. He returned a moment later, carrying what looked like a machete in a long leather sheath. The sheath was a deep red at its tip and faded into purple near the hilt it revealed. The dye job was exquisite and someone had painted green vines across it. The vines didn’t bloom with flowers, however, rather with music notes. “This is Sweet Refrain. She’s a weapon build for a bard… a machete.” He added, then handed her the blade.

Tazrae immediately unfastened the lash holding it into the sheath and revealed what looked like an oddly hybrid creation. It thrummed with magic and she smiled slightly. “It’s magical.” She said, lifting an eyebrow as if to make that statement a question.

Xander nodded. “Oh, for sure. It has been called the Singing Blade a time or two. That silver handle is iconic in a few older tales. If you look closer it has holes in it that make it almost flute-like. You can play it like an instrument. In a normal person’s hand, it’s just a machete, not even a good one. But if you put it in a bard’s hand… a bard like you… it will truly shine. It can store sounds that can be released by saying ‘sing for me’. To store the sound, all you have to do is place the sound in the mouthpiece and concentrate on holding it there. Once stored, the bard can aim the machete and swing the blade in the direction they want the sound to travel, covering the fingering holes with their hands. ‘Sing for me’ activates that stored sound and it will project out towards their opponent. However, this ability can still be used even if the bard is not currently wielding the sword. The only difference is that the sound will be expressed through the holes in the hilt instead which will cover the immediate area around the blade’s hilt. I’d recommend storing one of your many Audius abilities at a time. If you are not holding the blade when you activate it, the effect of that Audius ability is halved and affects the area immediately around the blade within five feet.” Xandor explained.



Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
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A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on May 24th, 2022, 1:46 am

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Taz’s eyes widened. “That’s incredible. It’s also great for deactivating an enemy if you get disarmed or your weapon confiscated.” She said running her hands over the hilt of the blade, then locating the mouthpiece and the fingering holes. She put it to her lips and played It a moment, feeling silly. But she also felt a pull to expel one of her bardic abilities into it. She refrained from doing so, instead, sheathing it. “I’ll have to practice with it. Thank you so much. It’s a lovely weapon.” She added, knowing now she had no excuse not to practice her machete. “I’ll take very good care of it. That’s a beautiful name, to be honest. Now I’ll have to learn to use one better.” She said, sheathing the blade and smiling slightly at it.

“Oh, and Teagan is here now. He won’t know you, but I suggest you drop Sweet Refrain off at his bungalow… he should be there now. Tell him I asked him to personally awaken the blade for you. He can carry it for a great while this season and by the time you learn more about how to wield a machete, he might be able to have awakened it as a Voril Blade.” He added. ‘”Tegan likes you… tell him your curse is to be forgotten and then tell him you know he’s a shroud, and I bet he’ll do it.” Mathias suggested. “He’ll probably do some extras for you too on it. That Shroud has a few tricks up his sleeves.

With that, Taz rose, gripping the new machete in her hand. She took her leave and left Mathias and Xander to do more fishing. The jeweltoned Ixam joined her as escort. She did indeed swing by Tegan’s, found him home, and repeated what Mathias had said. Strangely, Tegan believed her, took possession of the blade, and promised to reunite it with her by the end of the season hopefully awakened. He seemed shocked she knew he was a Shroud, but he wasn’t surprised about her knowing about Vorilscence. He did ask her how she knew and she explained about the Encyclopedia. He asked if he could study the volume and she readily agreed. It was a solid exchange, meaning Tegan would be around off and on, which would give her company even if he didn’t remember her.

Happy, Taz headed for home, knowing she’d finally be able to sleep.

Words: 3442



Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Mizahar Grader (1) Overlored (1)
One Thousand Posts! (1) One Million Words! (1)
Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

A Monstrous Education Pt II

Postby Tazrae on June 15th, 2022, 3:32 am

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GRADING


Tazrae-

Interrogation +5, Research +5, Writing +3

Valterrics: Riamm, Riamm: Appearance & Mannerism, Riamm: Reproduction & Lifecycle, Riamm: Adopted By The Myrian As Children’s Pets, Very Protective Of Their Bonded Child, Riamm: Myrian Children Wear Them On Their Heads, Riamm: What They Sound Like During Their Vocalizations, Nuzem: Appearance & Mannerisms, Nuzem: Anatomy, Movement, Structure, Nuzem: Reproductive and Life cycle, Nuzem: Huge Octopus, Nuzem: Immortal, Sahova: Island of Wizards, Nuzem: Made By Humans/Sahovains, Nuits: Generally lazy, Craft Creatures To Work For Them, Octopus: Appearance & Mannerism, Octopus: Incredibly Smart, Nuzem: Manufactured by Nuit But Transformed By Djed Storms, Nuzem: Hunted By Svefra, Toothed Whales, Sharks, Nuzem: Can Be Killed, Wild Djed: What It Is, Sweet Refrain: Appearance, History, Traits,

Note: Sweet Refrain – Gift From Mathias
Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Mizahar Grader (1) Overlored (1)
One Thousand Posts! (1) One Million Words! (1)
Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)


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