Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Arcadian Beasts of the Air

Arcadian beasts are elusive creatures, typically displaying uncanny awareness of human intention. While most are wild beyond any hope of taming, there are notable exceptions.

Francis Blackwell Mayer
The Gryphons of Calabria make their homes in high peaks of the Iron Hills. These bright minded and inquisitive creatures are ferocious hunters, and enjoy pursuing prey trough the winding valleys and thin woodlands of the mountain range. They prefer feet footed or deft winged targets, and therefore pay little heed to herd animals. Their diet consists mostly of wyrms, deer, horse, mountain lion, wolf, eagle, and salmon. Being normally day hunters, their interaction with nocturnal creatures such as wyverns is rare, yet such aerial combat is a spectacle to behold.

The Clan of the Gryphon have the Gryphon as their totem, and elite members of the clan called the Gryphonym each form a lifelong bond with a Gryphon. Such Gryphons allow the Gryphonym to use them as mounts. The Gryphonym have a treaty with the merchant guilds of Calabria, and serve as messengers and couriers in times of national emergency. A Gryphonym rider is stationed at each of the main cities of Calabria, where they serve for 30 days before being replaced by one of their kinsmen.

The Gryphon is protected by bounty in Calabria, with any harm to a Gryphon usually resulting in death by public hanging or decapitation. Possession of even a single Gryphon feather is a punishable offense.

Gustav Moreau

The Pegasus is a rare winged beast resembling a horse. Legend tells that the original Pegasus was a unique immortal that bred with the common horse, spawning an entire race of creatures. The Pegasus haunts isolated valleys among the Iron Hills, typically making its home in cave openings in sheer cliff walls.
The bone of the Pegasus is highly prized by Alchemists for its lightweight yet durable nature.

Pegasus, the being after which the race of creatures is named, is rumored to yet live on an island in the seas beyond Calabria. Some say he lives among the Elves, and cherishes their company.

Arnold Böcklin

The Wyvern is a fearsome nocturnal beast, with bat like wings. Wyverns typically haunt the mountains of the Iron and Silver Hills, but have been known to descend into the low lying hills of Freehold. They feast upon timid creatures such as deer, and have a particular taste for herd animals. Wyverns have been known to be tamed by Hobgoblins and other fearsome creatures and used as mounts.

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