A curious-looking, but generally amicable people, m'mimlusk seem to resemble gigantic snails. Carrying large, shell homes upon their backs, they will travel and seek trade, usually offering their services as skilled cultivators and farmers - or, in the case of the oceanic variant, fearsome hunters - in exchange for objects of their particular interest, from pretty trinkets to interesting books. They store these treasured items in their shell, as they are gifted with a home that is magically bigger inside than it appears outside.
Average Lifespan:: 300 years
Average Height:: 5ft at the top of the shell
Average Weight:: N/A
Location Found:: Abroad.
*all statistics based on averages; extremes in any direction, or found in odd locations, are always allowed.
Breeding and Hybrids M'mimlusk pairbonds will often render one to three children; terrestrial m'mimlusk give live birth, while oceanic individuals will lay eggs in the water. These offspring are born or hatched without shells, almost completely translucent, and will begin to grow their shell within hours. After the first two weeks, their colors will begin to come in, as well as the beginnings of their shell's final hues, features, and shapes.
Hybrids with other races - humanoid or those with a humanoid shifting gene - are possible, but are very uncommon due to the fundamental differences between m'mimlusk courtship rituals and their own. Most often, such hybrids are chased out of cultures other than the m'mimlusk's; rarely are they accepted. Elves and Halgians in particular view the m'mimlusk as ill-fit as pairbonds, and will actively remove any hybrid offspring from their cities, though they do trade with terrestrial variants on occasion.
Hybrids between the two variants is also possible, but very, very improbable - as the oceanic variant would rather kill and cannibalize their terrestrial cousins than breed with them.
Healing and Regeneration Unlike most other races, m'mimlusk may recover from severe injuries to both their shells and flesh. They are able to regenerate limbs, broken/cracked shells, and even internal organs - though the more severe the injury, the longer it takes to heal. However, injuries to the head and torso may prove fatal, and a m'mimlusk may bleed out before the regeneration can seal the wound if the injury is severe enough. Like their animal counterparts, oxygenated m'mimlusk blood is blue.
Mouths and Speech Though not immediately apparent on some individuals, all m'mimlusk have mouths and may speak Common with relative ease. However, some may have facial structures that make speaking clearly somewhat difficult, and their words may be hard to discern. Thus, it's not uncommon for young m'mimlusk to be taught telepathy, the art of speaking through one's mind.
Slime Trails Both terrestrial and oceanic m'mimlusk, when traveling overland, may leave a trail of slime behind them. This slime dries relatively quickly, and does not leave any residue. Some m'mimlusk who have water-based or air-based magics have learned to disperse the trail even earlier, while others may buy enchanted trinkets to get rid of it as to not anger landowners or city officials when passing through more civilized areas.
Diet This is what this species, and any variants, may eat at any given time.
fruit, vegetables, succulents.
algae, shellfish, aquatic plants.
Terrestrial m'mimlusks tend to be mainly herbivorous, though every so often they gather bone-meal to make into a tough bread to ensure their shells remain healthy. Their oceanic cousins dine more readily on shellfish as often as they do on plantlife, and occasionally on sea birds they can catch unawares.
Species info credited to Nechesa, JPG, RúneSketch, and Blazeh/Verridith.
Appearance Appearing very much like a giant snail with vaguely humanoid features, m'mimlusk can vary wildly in size, shape and color. Both variants may exhibit more human-like faces, torsos, and arms though they have very little in the way of true bone structure. Some may have long, collapsible eye stalks while others may have more animalistic, almost reptilian, faces. It's thought that the terrestrial variant appears to be the most human in features, while oceanic individuals have somewhat predatory, more animal countenances.
Though m'mimlusk only have arms, they tend to be disproportionately long. Due to their lack of conventional skeletons and soft, rubbery flesh, they are able to curl up into the safety of their shells, or stretch to reach things just out of reach of their grasp.
M'mimlusk will often decorate their shells as a means of self expression, be that with paints made from natural sources, or decorative items they create themselves, such as beads, weaves of plants, small bones, or whatever else takes their fancy. As they are larger on the inside than the outside, they may house items within and can even invite small creatures and species inside, provided there is enough room.
Terrestrial: While the terrestrial variant typically display more earthy tones, it is not unheard of for them to be of brighter hues. Their shell homes are as unique as each individual, be they spiked or smooth - but the one thing they almost always have in common is a swirling structure. All terrestrial individuals will have thick, opaque shells that can be smooth and shiny or ridged and rocky, depending on the individual, with any that fall on the spectrum in-between possible.
Oceanic: The oceanic variant are especially colorful, even having bioluminescent markings on their bodies and shells. Their shells often mimic that of land m'mimlusk, sometimes appearing slightly translucent than completely opaque; some may even appear glasslike, and filled with what appears to be mist that hides what lay inside with magic. All oceanic m'mimlusk are predatory, and have features - such as pseudo-claws and fangs - that their terrestrial cousins do not. Nearly all have secondary fins, sometimes in the shape of butterfly-like wings, that they can extend from the bottoms of their shells to swim.
Culture M'mimlusk are split into two variants, and the cultures of these variants differ widely. Details may be found below.
Terrestrial: Gatherings of earth-bound m'mimlusk are always peaceful, and they are often welcoming to travelers and welcomed by settlements in equal measure. They are known to be a caring people, doting especially on their own families. Typically adopting a neutral stance in whatever conflict they may come across, they are known to be wonderful mediators. Farming is a rich part of their culture, with trading coming a close second; because they are naturally attuned to flora, they can skillfully plant and harvest veritable bounties of nutritious crops to support their herbivorous diets. What they do not eat, they sell on, trading for 'shines', a term used for their favorite object. What a m'mimlusk will trade for depends on the individual, but it could be anything from glittering stones to feathers to books, and anything in between.
Oceanic: Often nomadic, water-bound m'mimlusk are not as peaceful as their counterparts. Having to survive some of the more exotic dangers of the sea, they became fierce and aggressive hunters. Utilizing venoms and poisons from their own bodies and toxic plants, they create deadly weapons with which to fell their prey. Also unlike their terrestrial cousins, their diet is carnivorous, though they are still known to trade for 'shines'. Objects of their trade may include carcasses or bones from successful hunts, or special concoctions of poison and medicine, but because of their sharper natures, oceanic m'mimlusk are often choosier about what they accept as payment, preferring higher quality items and tending towards vicious behavior if they feel cheated. Unlike their terrestrial cousins, oceanic m'mimlusk do not keep small pets inside their shells, though have been known to tame predatory animals such as sharks and octopi that may aid them in their hunting.
Abilities Both terrestrial and oceanic m'mimlusk have sturdy shells, capable of protecting them from assault - though they are far from unbreakable. While alive, their shells are also enhanced with magic, allowing the inner shell to be larger than it seems to the outward onlooker. This allows the m'mimlusk to comfortably curl up inside it, sealing themselves in with an operculum, and store a variety of small items within it. They cannot remove themselves from their shell, and forcefully removing a m'mimlusk will result in fatal injuries and death.
Terrestrial: Given their remarkable connection to the flora of the world, it has long been debated whether the farming skills of terrestrial m'mimlusk come from extensive knowledge, or magic; indeed, some have been known to wield the element of earth. Any plant tended by the m'mimlusk thrives, growing healthier than it ever could in the wild. Because of this, they tend to be natural friends with the florid subrace of elemental, and due to their knowledge, they also make for good sources of information about natural remedies.
Terrestrial m'mimlusk are known to be relatively slow overland; they can keep up with the average human at a leisurely walking pace, but cannot run or jump like other races. They can, however, use any magic they possess to help them move quickly, but this varies from individual to individual and is not a race-wide ability.
Oceanic: Oceanic m'mimlusk are both venomous and poisonous, capable of delivering a dangerous bite with sharp teeth, or secreting an unpleasant ooze from their flesh. They use both to tip their bone weaponry in a hunt, often making them into more potent concoctions with dangerous plants. Some use their shells and bait to lure small prey close, then drag the hapless animal inside to kill it. While they too have knowledge of useful remedies, these m'mimlusk are more likely to trade in poisons, and are more known to use elemental magic than their counterparts - usually water and ice.
This variant is much faster than their land counterparts in the water, using wing-like or fin-like appendages to propel themselves swiftly through the water. They are able to extend and withdraw these 'wings' at will, and they have no bone structure; because of this, they may also control how large or small these wings or fins may be.
Thousands of years ago, in the Realm of Lizzarkyth, Balion and Sago were together checking on a world they often did very little in. It was an excuse for the two gods to goof off, in the eyes of others - but none stopped them, and this Realm had no lesser deities to interrupt their fun and games. While resting from their prank-playing, Balion noticed a small creature had crept up on his tail, slithering slowly across his bark-like scales. Mystified, he watched the shelled animal with interest, admiring its beautiful spiral shell.
Sago was more than amused. We have many such shelled creatures in the ocean, he said, flicking a fin at the snail. In fact, I believe we have cousins of that particular beast. They are very hardy; humble animals that work all their lives to survive against every odd.
They are so slow, Balion replied, frowning. They must live a thousand years if they are to accomplish anything at all.
Not nearly so long, the oceanic god said with a smirk. Sometimes two, sometimes ten. You are the god of the earth, Balion - yet you do not know of its creatures?
Balion scowled at his companion, sticking his forked tongue out before regarding the snail again. That is not long enough, he muttered. Then, he grinned broadly. Sago! I've an idea!
The god of seasons took the small snail in his claws and launched into the air. Protecting it from the wind, he spiraled into the sky, then sought a place he'd seen a few days previously - the great antlered mountains of Daern's Ridge. Here he alit, surrounding by beautiful trees, and set the snail upon the ground. Sago joined him and they wove their magic around the tiny creature, delighted at the changes that began to take hold. As the blessing took hold, the first m'mimlusk found himself growing larger, gaining prehensile limbs and strength in his shell. Bewildered by this, he gazed up at the two gods, who reassured him.
Fear not, declared Balion extravagantly, flaring his wings, for we have seen you toil with such determination to survive, small one, and we have given you the means to an easier existence as reward. Sago rolled his eyes, but smiled broadly down at the new-made m'mimlusk. The sunlight shone across the god's ever-wet scales, shimmering and dancing as though formed of water. We will create more of your kind; and you shall be known as the m'mimlusk forevermore. Go and seek your way in the Realms with new vigor!
As they created more terrestrial m'mimlusk, Sago eventually persuaded Balion that they should do the same for some of those snails in the waters; and thus, the oceanic variant was crafted from Lizzarkyth's lake-seas, though most were taken to other Realms with true oceans where they would have space to thrive. The Ancient First lived for hundreds of years, teaching his followers the ways of farming and plant-keeping in honor of the great Balion; it's said that now his spirit flies with the god, free to sail the skies as fast as any dragon.
The First m'mimlusk was a large male with striped and speckled brown flesh, a kind face, and a bright sunset-hued shell that shimmered and shone as if made of crystal. He was gifted in the art of plant-song and the element of earth, promoting growth and life wherever he went.
No subspecies have been discovered for this species yet!