The Opened World
Leefaya or Sprites are minor manifestations of a specific elemental plane. The sprites vary in size, power, and to some degree personality. They vary in shape but are usually vaguely spherical and possess two blank blackish holes or circles called eyespots. They may form some sort of bond with their original owner. The leefa shows loyalty to its bearer even after the bearer dies and becomes extremely chaotic if summoned after this point. The bond between bearer and leefa must be developed however and a leefa may bond with another bearer if it does not do so with its original bearer. Leefaya are usually contained within laranthan orbs called yitaliya. Sprites manifest themselves in areas of concentrated elemental energy. They are bound to their yitali in a manner reminiscent of soul orbs, however the orb is outside of the body of the leefa. Sprites do not die, but when their energy is dissipated, fade back to the elemental plane of their origin. The yitali is thought to manifest first or with the sprite and usually fades when the sprite does. Sprites are necessary for the creation of golems, are highly sought out, and are often sold in markets (although there are some who see this as cruel). Additionally sprites are very fond of liquid larantha and must be kept away from inscriber’s inks.
Elementals are larger manifestations of a specific elemental plane. They exhibit much less personality than sprites but are much more powerful. They are a manifestation of an area of pure element acting seemingly chaotically, but in line with its elements personality. Elementals do possess “intelligence” as such; they do have a will and are quite difficult to dissuade from whatever they may feel they have to do. Extremely powerful individuals may command elementals through great magics, but this is not a light undertaking and many of those who have tried have been found in pieces afterwards. Elementals are also quite fond of molten larantha, but as they are nearly never found in cities, this is much less of a problem than with sprites.
golems are physical creations imbued with the spirit of an elemental and bound to a master. They are built from any number of physical objects, usually having something to do with the specific element that possesses the body. They generally assume a bipedal form similar to the alathaya and a yitali (the laranthan orb of a sprite, corresponding with whatever element the golem is to be associated with) is needed to create the creature. Golems live to serve their creators and will obey them with an iron will, but to the exact letter of the command. They posses no imagination and will take any command literally, occasionally yielding unfortunate or comical results. The act of crating a golem requires a body for the golem, using a material associated with a specific element. Thus fire golems are created from ashes, embers, or coal, water golems from sand, coral, or shells, earth golems from clay, rock, or mud, life cycle golems from wood, plants, or flesh, light golems from mirrors, lenses, prisms, or ice golems from ice or snow. Air golems have not been recorded although the possibility remains. Greater golems have been fashioned from any number of materials and last until completely destroyed, whereas lesser golems only last a short time before they dissolve back into their components.
Classes of golems (in ascending standard size)
Golemlings are usually a foot tall, possess more of the personality traits of the sprite used in their creation, and are found to be quite cute by many individuals, even if they are “so ugly they’re cute”. They may be made to be permanent and the yitali may be used to resummon the sprite if the golem is destroyed.
Lesser golems are commonly seen in larger cities and are the easiest to create. They are created with a specific task in mind and last only until that task is completed, or at most several hours. Often they are given only basic form. Due to the weakness of the bond, the sprite orb is often intact after the collapse of the golem.
Standard golems last multiple days and are used in many utilitarian roles. They often possess more evidence of care in their creation, from ornate sculpting or decorations or “personality traits” sculpted into them such as facial expressions or the like. They last until the energy from the sprite fades or the golem’s body is destroyed, which results in the fading of the sprite as well.
Greater golems take significant time to create, but their sheer power makes them often worth the trade off. Due to the strain on the sprite, the golem will often last less than a day before the sprite fades and the golem begins to fall apart.
Lamdrilya – large bipedal lizards with strong legs and thick beaks. They are used as mounts by Alathaya and have been bred for various activities from lean racers to stout farm animals. A lamdril is frequently adorned with designs and tattoos much like an Alathay, and are thought of as the closest siblings in creation.
Lay’irdeeya – four-legged creatures with strong turtle-like bills and big hunching front shoulders. They are ferocious carnivores, killing in packs. They are fiercely territorial and will attack any who enter their hunting grounds. Lay’irdeeya are only occasionally tamed due to their aggressive nature.
Ralitanya – long winged lizards encountered on larger cliff faces away from developed areas. They live off a diet of fish which they catch by skimming above the waters and making short dives to catch. They have been tamed and used as mounts but are very expensive due to their rarity and the amount of training necessary.
Shakaarya – mutated Alathaya. They live in caves and other dark places such as ruins. They are mostly the result of a degenerative disease centuries ago and were isolated in colonies away from healthy Alathaya. They have very large eyes, stooped shoulders, bony outgrowths on their joints, overdeveloped forearms, and thickened fins and claws. They are not actually a separate species as the Alathaya, merely an inbred and mutated sub species.
Drihkiya – rat-tailed flightless birds. They are masters of adaptation and thrive in almost any environment, being able to digest nearly anything they ingest except metal and rocks, which simply pass through their system. They have very highly evolved senses of hearing and smell, as well as the ability to mimic sounds, including voices. Drihkiya are usually seen as pests due to their voracious appetites and ability to get into nearly any location, although some are taken as pets or even used as entertainers due to their intelligence and vocal abilities.
Piki – miniscule long tailed hummingbirds. Pikiya are responsible for pollinating many of the larger crops cultivated by the Alathaya. They are not actually tamed, but rather kept in colonies which are built in fields. Piki are where honey come from.
Rockhoppers -squirrel/monkey-like lizards that live in low brush and rocky areas all across the world of Alatha. Make deposits of seeds, grains, and fruits in caches and live in nests of long grasses. It is commonly felt that rockhoppers are in the same family as the species of lizard that the Alathaya are evolved from.
Dokya – long furred horned reptilian creatures that weigh roughly a hundred pounds. Their fur is harvested for wool and is woven into one of the warmest fabrics known. Their milk is also commonly used as is their meat. They are herbivores and herded in flocks by a Dokherd. Prounounced DOUGH -kya, doka is the singular form.
Sern – large creature weighing over a thousand pounds and standing roughly six feet tall from the top of their crests. Both males and females have large pointed horns that protrude laterally from the tops of their heads. Sern can be rather aggresive, particularly during mating season. Their name is one of the few words to be the same plural and singular and is now known to have come from hightongue.
Besithya – desert carnivores native to the northern wastes but occassionally found elsewhere. They are often seen sunning themselves on rock outcroppings and are vicious if confronted. They are excellent climbers and capable of rearing up on their hindlegs as a defense. The head of a Besith was the symbol of the ancient Nekthet empire and are found commonly in scrubby or rocky areas in both Remnant and Alatha lands.
Drobit – A finicky brush bird commonly startling walkers in most of the Alathay archipelago.
Kol Crane – At nearly fourteen feet from beak to tail, the savage Kol Crane is a red tufted, very long necked predator that is known to follow its prey without tire for days, often pushing them along with loud shrieks to wear them out before attacking.
Plague – not quite a creature and not quite a plant. The plague or plague moss is the name given to semi-sentient slime moss that overwhelms and lives off of host creatures and other organic compounds.
Cliffdiver – a seabird found nesting along Alatha’s coasts, noted for plunging from the air into the waves after fish.
Giant Mantis – probably the largest insect, the giant mantis can grow to just taller than an Alathay and are ferocious predators that are found in the Ephsharay Wastes, parts of Meegasee, and central Remnant lands outside of the Gelidon.
Poolflower – an amphibious slug commonly seen in pools of standing water and is renowned for its beauty.
Pelican – Hey! They look funny enough now, why change them for Alatha?!
Found Only In Remnant Lands
Phosaerons – literally “air lights” in hightongue. These spiders have a huge abdomen (nearly a foot in diameter) filled with a phosphorescent gas that allows them to float through the air in the cool fog of remnant lands. The brightness attacts the small flies and moths they prey upon. Think daddy long legs attatched to a small glowing beach ball.
Ferokai – Ferokai are a large four-legged beast often found in cave systems and domesticated by the Remnant as pack animals and mounts. They are metamorphic and begin life as aquatic larvae looking somewhat like primitive koi fish. Each ferokai possesses a distinct set of grey, black, white, and/or brown blotches. Due to the large amount of minerals they ingest, deposits grow through skin in various joints, especially the legs. This does not however seem to be painful for the beasts.
Simiae – Viscous shelled creatures that appear somewhat like a cross between a turtle and a mandril baboon. They are fiercely territorial and will kill anything they deem a threat to their space. They actually kill seldomly aside from that, prefering to consume carrion than to kill prey themselves. Their carapace, much like a tortoise’s, is quite tough and offers great protection in the tunnels and rocky outcroppings the simiae dwell in.
Spathae – Burrowing snakes that dart out and grab prey, stabbing them with long fangs. Spatha is the hightongue term for sword.
Pillarworms – Huge earthworms that may reach up to 50 feet long. Their droppings are enourmous blobs of jelly that render passages impassable, but aside from that they are quite harmless.
Comb Beetle – Colonies of comb beetles form massive and elaborate small tunnels through rock and earth. Though the beetles are easily frightened, an unwary Remnant stepping on a colony has caused the system to collapse, plunging the unlucky victim to a death a hundred feet below
Tomb ants – Tomb ants are the largest known species of ant, coming to roughly a foot and a half long. Although not especially predatory, they are opportunists when it comes to food and swarm anyone who seems to pose a threat to the colony.
Mole Tortoise – A burrowing reptile highly prized for its meat by the Remnant. They may also be found in the northern edge of Alathay lands. They may be confused with the Giant Tortoise, which lives primarily above ground and lives for nearly five times as long.
Laceartae – A long tailed slender lizard that feeds on insects and is quite common in Remnant lands and in the Ephsharay wastes.
Found Only In Melali Lands
Weta – Huge locust or or grasshopper-like insect found in large amounts all over over Moa’loli. They are usually seen as pests, but play a key role in the ecosystem as prey for many species as well as cleaning up nearly any refuse. Its bite packs a nasty punch though for those who try to pick them up improperly.
Tua – The Tua is an enormous predatory ratite (flightless bird) standing as tall as a Melali that hunts in packs. It plays a large role in Melali mythology as the most ferocious beast. They emit a humming whistle that terrifies anyone familiar with the species.
A’a – The Melali name for piki. They are probably the most significant animal in Melali culture, so they are worth repeating here despite not being limited to Melali lands.
Humu – A rotund long snouted lizard that rustles through the leaves and grass with its face down searching for insects. A Melali insult as well for a person who cares so much about their own needs they are oblivious to the world around them or just someone who is fat, which is seen as a symptom of the prior. Also, they have blue saliva, which is often used as a dye.
Lily Mantis – a foot and a half long grey mantis found often near flowering plants in Moa’loli
Go’o – A giant crab that lives in the forests and scrub lands, especially near the coast. It grows to nearly three feet long and is often covered in shaggy moss or algae along its back.
Spine beetle – A football sized insect with sharp needle-like quills protruding from its backside. Rolls into a ball when startled.
*Polu Heron – A stealthy jungle predatory with extremely quick reflexes that snatches its prey nearly imperceptibly.
Beloa’a – Literally “bush creature”, the beloa’a is the most common ratite (flightless bird) in Melali lands and is often seen as the peaceful cousin or brother of the Tua in myths.
*Ngopou’u – A herbivorous reptile that becomes very aggressive during mating seasons, ramming competitors, intruders, and even rocks or trees with its thick knobby horn.