• Lore • The Fields of Gauthrel: Codex

The Gauthrel Plains reach from the coasts of western Idalos to the very edge of Ne'haer before meeting the forests surrounding Hiladrith. The Fields of Gauthrel can be a dangerous place, one that is home to the most deadliest of creatures. It holds many secrets in the history of the land and may offer rewards to those who choose to journey out into the wild plains. It is best not to wander out alone in these fields. Even caravans have been known to go missing.

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The Fields of Gauthrel: Codex

The Fields of Gauthrel
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Climate

The Fields of Gauthral experience cold harsh winters and hot humid summers. Days are far warmer than nights - these can be freezing. Rainfall is usually low and when it does rain, it comes in the form of thunderstorms that usually take place between Ashan to Ymiden and Saun.

Gauthrel was once an expansive forest, beautiful and untouched. After the Great Shattering, Gauthrel became the unfortunate site of a great war between the Immortals, who quickly destroyed the forest. This battle continued until the Immortals realized that they could not die - at least not at the hands of their own kind.

The battlefield that day was not littered with dead bodies. No. It was a sea of fallen trees. With their great trunks laid on the ground and their roots exposed, the thousand year old trees sank slowly in a bath of mud. The Forest of Gauthrel was no more.

Arcs rolled by and the battle of futility was a lesson for the Immortals as they focused efforts on their own spawn - the various races of Idalos. The seasons healed the soils of Gauthrel and slowly a blanket of green was drawn over the short history destruction and failure. Memory of the destroyed forest soon faded and was replaced by the Fields of Gauthrel.

Yet remnants of this terrible tale of war still remained to haunt the Fields of Gauthrel. Terrifying creatures that were created in moments of frustration and anger by the Immortals during the battle, continued to survive. Lurking only in the night, these ugly, menacing, unsightly creatures, were the by-product of every Immortal's failing qualities. Anger, greed, dishonesty, ignorance, betrayal, and more are the essence of these beings. During the day, these creatures live in lairs underground to greedily protect their stockpiled artifacts and weapons that were discarded by the Immortals long ago. During the night, they terrorise any who venture the plains, eventually killing and maiming their remains.

Uthaldria, the city surrounded by the fields are well aware of the scourge of the Fields. It is ingrained in all to trust none whom come from the outside, for even shape shifting creatures are common. Those who do the opposite and attempt to leave Uthaldria into Gauthrel, are compelled to earn the trust and favor of the people, lest they wish to avoid a most cruel death.

The death of the forest led to the collective destruction of many species, leading to a very low biodiversity. The few species that did survive either proliferated in number due to the abundance of grasslands in place of the forest, or suffered further losses to the dreaded immortal's spawn.

Grass
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There are more than 5000 species of grass - long, short and medium in size. This is the staple diet of the stave gazelle.

Bloat Grass


This is just one of many strains of grass found on the open plains of Idalos. What differentiates it from the rest is its ability to absorb water, whether rain or dew. It has the appearance of a thick, hollow stalk. But when it absorbs water, it thickens and unrolls up to a length of three feet. The odd thing is that if gathered and forcibly drained, or sucked dry, the grass remains in this lengthened, straightened state, and can then be dried to use as an inexpensive but sturdy weaving medium. Only natural evaporation in the sun will make it curl back up. People that go to gather this resource on wet mornings do not suffer for lack of water.
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The Fields of Gauthrel: Codex

Regional Bestiary and Fauna
Creatures

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Stave Gazelle

The horns of these gazelle are made of two straight poles of a wood like bone substance that provides the only kind in the fields devoid of trees. The herds of the gazelle are enormous in number - they can grow to tens of thousands with some herds growing to almost a hundred thousand. Though many die to the Immortal's Swawn, their numbers are replenished quickly where so many other species become extinct.

Blood Wolf

Blood wolves have dark red eyes, interlocking teeth, sharp claws and a spine of spikes, making them creatures to avoid at all costs. It is not to their red eyes that they owe their name, rather their incredible sense of smell that picks up the metallic aroma of blood from miles away. They are able to sense weakness in potential prey from a mere whiff. Unfortunately, these wolves are low in number and only a few packs remain. They will prey upon any creature for food.

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Steppe Gulch

Numerous in number, the gulch is a scavenger that has grown in number to feed upon the remains of the many dead at the hands (or rather teeth) of the Immortal's Spawn. The gulch is featherless and therefore incredibly ugly. There are a few feathers located on its disfigured wings and tail that provide it the ability to fly.

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Hyx

The hyx is a rare, large (ten foot long body length), fox-like animal, reclusive, extremely intelligent and sly. It has been decimated by the introduction of the Immortal's Spawn and few remain. They often hunt for stave gazelle. They inspire many to write poetry of these sad animals, for it is said that the hyx knows of the slow death of their species. The hyx, is difficult to outsmart and therefore hard to kill. Their intelligence is admired by many races and they are known to develop a complex and rich pact with their owners, often offering themselves as a mount.

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Arrow Buzzard

These birds of prey launch themselves at large animals and uses their slim line body to puncture their prey and damage their vitals. These thin birds have sharp pointed beaks that taper outwards to a slim head. The buzzards fly in a rotating circle formation above their prey. They then swoop down towards their prey at great speeds and at the last moment tuck their wings close about their body. If the aim is poor they will hit bone or miss altogether and they can die on impact. Those that aim successfully, find themselves inside their prey. They then proceed to damage the internal organs of their prey, and attempt to burrow out from the body. Sometimes these birds can get stuck and if they do not exit quickly enough, they will soon suffocate and die. If they do wring themselves free, the repellant feathers rid itself of blood and the pack of birds begins to feed on the animal.

Ardor

The ardor is a rare bird of prey capable of killing the stave gazelle. These huge birds are silvery in color and never land, using air currents to rest their muscles. They are often seen swooping down and clasping a struggling gazelle, before tearing out its neck midflight, or, dropping them from above to die on impact. If the Ardor is killed, or its carcass found, their beak makes for an extremely tough shield, though cutting it requires specialist equipment. The feathers are easier to obtain and as tough as steel. They are ideal to be weaved into a lightweight chain mail, braided into tough, flexible ropes and can be used to hoist large heavy cargo without breaking, among other things.

Immortal's Spawn

Creatures formed from the actions of the immortals were mostly unintended and were an unwanted by-product of their ill-feelings during the war of Gauthrel. The are cave dwelling, mostly blind, creatures, with exoskeleton bodies, disproportionately large teeth and few body parts. The feed on anything that moves and will protect the artifacts stockpiled in their caves to the bitter end.

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Black Gulper

As if from a child's nightmare, this nocturnal predator consists of an enormous hinged mouth and a stomach like sack, connecting from it. It has no eyes, no legs, no ears, no other body parts. It swallows prey whole, even creatures larger than it, preventing their escape with tiny rows of teeth. The black gulper does not care what it eats. The digestion process will take months in its stomach sack.

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Harrow

the harrow is a creature that those of Uthaldria would best forget and their name is often avoided in conversation. They consist of a huge mouth, hinged with disproportionately large clear-in-color fangs, a small slimy body, decayed and writhing. The body is useless and like many of these creatures, they drag themselves about with their mouths and teeth. The harrow relies on keeping its prey alive for as long as possible in order to feed on fresh blood. They live in lairs at day time, taking up the entire entry with their large mouths and black eyes. Further into their lairs are often an important treasure once discarded by the immortals.

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Writhes

Writhes are small squid-like creatures that amass in their hundreds, using their tentacles to grip upon their prey. Powerful suckers can literally suck the flesh off the bones of their prey. They make a squelching sound as they move. Killing one will leak an acid that can often kill, or slow others.

Vivus

This snake like creature has a head with large black eyes, disproportionately large teeth and a segmented exoskeletal body. These creatures occupy tunnels below ground connecting. They use a thin metallic blade as its tongue, with enough flex to picking up minute scents. It uses this same tongue as a primary piercing weapon to hold its prey before clamping its jaws shut to secure the kill.

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Stargazer

A patch of dirt among the grass is a telltale sign of a stargazer, for those who walk on it will immediately find two parallel jaws rising like walls around them and the ground falling away. This is the stargazer: a creature with a mouth many feet wide. It will swallow grass and dirt, if it also means prey are among it. It is also characterized by its large upward staring eyes that rise through the soil as it closes it jaws.

Death Worm

A large, eyeless, red worm. They are three feet thick and ten feet long. They have small sets of pincers to grab their prey and will swallow prey whole in order to begin the digestion process immediately.
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