On Notorious Monsters

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Easy References
Toward Particularly Dangerous Non-Oceanic Megafauna
For All Professed Adventurers

Initially Released Under Auspices of
the Academy of Exceptionally Trained Hydaelyn Explorers and Researchers

Compiled for Printing by
The Grand Company of the Immortal Flames
of the Sultanate of Ul’dah
5th Astral Moon, 1572

Kannadi Albedo, Author

Introduction

Only when a creature grows more cunning, more aggressive, more deadly than its brethren is it worthy of a name.
—Frandelont Raimdelle

Among all monsters, as among all people, are individuals of superlative power, skill, and rarity. Adventurers call such monsters "notorious," as the lethal reputations of such beasts are well-earned. And yet adventurers will still hunt these creatures for public good, rare spoils, or sheer sport.

Often these notorious monsters are simple outliers among statistical averages, individuals endowed by nature and circumstance with worrying abilities and/or threatening behavior. Others, however, represent nascent species freshly split from older ones.

Regardless of origin, many notorious monsters may or may not be of appreciable danger to society. Some simply pestered too many a traveler, or attacked too famous a target, or guarded too aggressively their far-flung territories. Being notorious does not necessarily merit the fear of whole cities.

And yet, to claim such monsters are harmless is foolishness in the first degree. New explorations into new territory inevitably put free people into close contact with new monsters. And as beastmen move, they bring with them creatures unknown to civilized biology. Such has been the case all across Eorzea in subterranean caverns, burgeoning beastmen strongholds, and wild areas newly settled.

In the interest of identifying scientifically the precise threat of each notorious monster, while maintaining brevity for ease of reading and of distribution, the author has sought out all information pertaining to each while compiling only the most vital for publication.

Find here the information which may one day save your life.

Chapter 1

Being the Revised Contents of the Literature “On Notorious Monsters, vol.1”

Containing Therein Details Regarding the First Monsters Recognized Inter-State as Notorious

Deadeyes

  • Description

Physically of no particular distinction from an experienced alpha male dreadwolf -- possessing some gray hair among the black -- save for allegedly red eyes. Deadeyes is further distinguished by a collar and bands of Ixal design, crafted in mythril, but even that does not make him appear truly unique. The trademark trait of this fearsome wolf lies not in appearance at all, but in unnatural cunning and an apparent ability to coordinate his pack with what could pass for strategy.

Scout reports from the Brotherhood of the Broken Blade have made repeated confirmations of Deadeyes leading his pack, yet subtle details such as scar locations change with each report. Therefore, it is reasonable to assume that there is more than one Deadeyes.

  • Whereabouts

Attacks attributable to Deadeyes have been reported at the very gates of Gridania and as far afield as Hyrstmill. In recent weeks, the Brotherhood of the Broken Blade has labored well to restrict Deadeyes' range to the Treespeak area of the Northern Black Shroud, yet time can only tell whether the beast will be content to stay.

  • Threat Assessment

Deadeyes has been credited with the slaying of eighteen men, five women, twenty-six children and twelve chocobos. Lalafells of any age seem to be particularly favorite targets. He attacks with the typical arsenal of a dreadwolf: fangs, claws, and howling.

Fearsome as his individual reputation is, Deadeyes derives his strength from his pack, the strongest members of which never leave his side. To confront Deadeyes is to confront at least three powerful and intelligent dreadwolves.

Bear in mind as well that Deadeyes is still very much a dog of the Ixal. Several Ixal have been known to follow in his company, particularly the hunter Natali Xlotl, who is believed to be Deadeyes’ master. Where Deadeyes is found, Xlotl will not be far away.

Dodore

  • Description

An ahriman of supple beige skin with an unnaturally white, blue-irised eye. Regrettably little else is conclusively known about Dodore, save for its affinity for gathering other ahriman around it.

  • Whereabouts

Sightings of the mysterious ahriman have occurred in the south of Mor Dhona, invariably during the appearance of the region's mysterious miasma. None have successfully tracked where it comes from, or to where it goes once the miasma lifts.

  • Threat Assessment

Typical umbral magics of ahrimankind evidently come easy to Dodore, but the greatest threat in facing this creature comes from the minions it commands. Why Dodore is able to command followers, and for what purpose, are as yet unknown.

Elder Mosshorn

  • Description

A mosshorn is an aldgoat, male or female, which is at least a fulm greater in height and carrying longer, more gracefully curved horns than the average among the species. More unusual still, mosshorns have lifespans comparable to hyur. Elder Mosshorns are those which are several decades old, and whose horns, aptly, may bear a layer of moss.

Naturalists disagree as to whether mosshorns represent a new species or arise from aldgoat populations on a sort of generational "timer." Thus it is quite difficult to pick a young mosshorn out from an ordinary herd. Fortunately, mosshorns tend to make themselves distinct by forming a miniature herd around an Elder.

  • Whereabouts

Mosshorns are famed for roaming all about Thanalan, whether to find other mosshorns or simply to graze far and wide. The area of Nophica's Wells in Western Thanalan is a frequent hub of mosshorn activity, as Elders bring their small groups to drink cool cavern water and lick exposed minerals from rock walls.

  • Threat Assessment

Elder Mosshorns are among the least threatening of notorious monsters, but that is rather like being the least-prickly of all cacti. Mosshorns, as if realizing their own rarity, band together and attack anyone who comes too close to the Elder. When the attack begins, it comes from all sides with merciless blunt brutality. Fifteen people have been butted and trampled to death and many more have been injured for taking one curious step too many. Keeping a medium distance from the group, especially the Elder, guarantees nothing more offensive than a curiously appraising stare.

Great Buffalo

  • Description

Titanic beastkin native now only to Vylbrand, great buffalo are 6y-tall antecedents of the common water buffalo. All are possessed of gray skin, massive side-sticking horns and thick undercoats.

The thickness of hair underneath their bodies rather than atop is an evolutionary remnant of the days when snow and ice covered Eorzea. A bald back exposed skin to the warmth of the sun, while a shaggy front comforted against frozen ground and snowdrifts. The volumes of under-hair also serve as a sort of armor, as the assaults of would-be predators (both man and monster) would become hopelessly entangled before ever striking near a vital organ.

  • Whereabouts

Slow shifts of climate and the encroachment of society have dwindled their numbers. All known specimens call Vylbrand home. Frequent sightings occur near Camp Bald Knoll, as the environs thereabout are excellent soil for wild buffalo beans, the beasts' favorite vegetable.

For up-to-date information regarding the roaming patterns of wild great buffalo, estimated population numbers, and how to contribute to the planting of buffalo beans in areas far from civilian habitation, consult the La Noscea Wildlife Fund (LNWF).

  • Threat Assessment

Great buffalo, while majestic, are among the most dangerous of all wild creatures. Their relatively peaceful demeanors belie their sheer strength and durability. The extant representatives of the species have survived as long as they have by being defensive and quite thorough in rendering attackers incapable of attacking again. Even heavily-armored adventurers wielding the finest weapons can come to nothing against one.

Tarbh Uisge, the most notorious of the species, is in fact young for a great buffalo at a mere eighty years. Wild specimens may have upwards of three hundred years of survival experience. Considering the devastation Tarbh Uisge wrought, it is in the interest of any lone adventurer to give wild great buffalo a wide berth.

Haughtpox Bloatbelly

  • Description

A famed goblin hunter and gourmand (by goblin standards), dressed in the typical goblin garb which leaves no skin bare but the ears. If spotted in a rare moment of isolation, Bloatbelly is identifiable by her famous Aeolian Scimitar, said to have cleaved only the juiciest tentacles from a hundred morbols.

  • Whereabouts

Haughtpox Bloatbelly roams the North Shroud, forever seeking the allegedly delectable ingredients of the finest goblin dishes without regard for legality. She is constantly accompanied by a six-goblin entourage: three braggadocios, to help bring down larger prey, and three bouncers, to keep other goblins from hounding her for autographs.

  • Threat Assessment

Any band of goblins is dangerous if provoked, and Bloatbelly's is no exception. If confronted, her associates are quick to prevent any regrettable damage to her person by causing permanent damage in an interloper's. She herself is dangerously swift with her scimitar, a skill honed through years of monster-hunting.

Also of note: goblin cuisine, being catch-all, incorporates the meat of almost anything which is not a goblin. Bloatbelly has offered repeated assurances to Gridanian authorities that she does not gather, buy, or use the meat of people, and no evidence has tied her to mysterious disappearances in the North Shroud. However, the precise contents of her goblin hotpots are sometimes impossible to identify.

Tarbh Uisge

  • Description

A great buffalo of ancient lineage and prodigious size, 5y2f high at the hump with a thick shaggy undercoat typical of the species. Nothing is immediately apparent to distinguish him from other great buffalo, but fortunately it is difficult for a beast of his size to evade notice.

The author suspects that distinguishing markings may be irrelevant in any case. The public record holds that Tarbh Uisge was banished to a remote island in the Rhotano Sea, only to recently return under the command of his old master.

Such an isolated environment as a Rhotano island is the very place where great buffalo may live safely away from the predations of civilization. Furthermore, one who has tamed one great buffalo possesses all the necessary experience to tame another. There is, therefore, no compelling evidence that the Tarbh Uisge which was sent away is the Tarbh Uisge which has returned.

  • Whereabouts

Tarbh Uisge has been seen by camp spotters all over Vylbrand, serving as transportation for the escaped Mathistien of the Cloven Hoof, infamous master of beasts. Agents of Azeyma’s Shields have reason to believe the buffalo and his keeper frequently encamp in the numerous caverns of Eastern La Noscea.

  • Threat Assessment

Tarbh Uisge is most famous for the “Octant Rampage” of ten years past, when Mathistien tipped the delicate balance of magics keeping the behemoth creature under control. The attack and the resulting fire destroyed hundreds of buildings and claimed the lives of two hundred nine citizens. Among the dead were the Admiral’s chief of staff and the head of the Arcanists’ Guild.

It is reasonable to assume that ten years have not dulled either Tarbh’s strength or Mathistien’s brutality.

Uraeus

  • Description

A peiste of typical size whose silvery-white scales reflect the light of day in a dazzling fashion. Once considered among serious ecologists to be an example of albinism among the mountain peistes of Coerthas, the Uraeus is in fact a sub-species sporting an evolutionary trade-off. Its famously shining scales practically eliminate any chance of camouflage, yet aid its eyes in petrifying prey.

  • Whereabouts

Sightings have been heaviest along the thoroughfare between the Black Shroud and the Camp Glory area of Coerthas. Expeditionary forces have come to believe they nest high up in the mountains where they blend easier into the snow, but come down to the lower reaches to hunt and to sun themselves on exposed rock.

  • Threat Assessment

The aetheric skill of petrifaction, depending upon magical affinity, is not unknown to certain monsters, but the Uraeus has made it into a reliable biological technique. A single glare from its eyes, aided in some as-yet unknown way from the reflected light of its scales, can instantly freeze the muscles of any prey which looks upon it. Even the most seasoned adventurer is easy prey when struck immobile.

Civilian encounters with the Uraeus have been fortunately low, but reports can only come from survivors. Many a mysterious disappearance along the road may be due to an incautious glance in the wrong direction.

Zanig’oh

  • Description

Seemingly an ordinary inferno drake at a distance, Zanig'oh is in fact a biological weapon, its fiery scales etched with amalj'aa runes and its neck and wrists ringed with collars of electrum. This wicked jewelry, speculated to be made in part of the spoils of toppled caravans, causes all amalj’aan Branded Drakes great pain for the heightening of their ferocity. Zanig’oh, however, appears to exhibit no twitching and band-scratching characteristic of its younger Ranig’oh cohorts.

Contrary to popular belief, Zanig'oh is not an individual, but merely a title for the most powerful of Branded Drakes. (The term "zanig'oh" itself can translate to "catching flame" or "particularly sharp upper canine tooth" in amalj’aan.)

  • Whereabouts

Though Zanig’oh and lesser war-drakes are bred in the innermost territory of Pagl’than, amalj’aa raiding parties have taken them north to Southern Thanalan with increasing regularity. From near Camp Broken Water, the parties assemble for attacks throughout Eastern Thanalan.

  • Threat Assessment

Caravan raids in which Zanig’oh has been employed have claimed twenty-two lives and stolen treasures and material value at over one hundred sixty-six million gil. The Syndicate has classified such losses as merely an “annoyance,” but one of dire consequence for the future, particularly if raids target more than heavily-armored transports.

Zanig’oh itself is perhaps the most dangerous individual drake in Thanalan, owing to its domesticated ferocity and amalj’aa accoutrements. Its powerful bite, spiked tail and heat-based ranged attacks can fell most any adventurer in short order. Heightening the danger of this monster is the perpetually close proximity of its master and commander, notorious drake-breeder Goldfang Adebb Chah.

(For precise details of Goldfang's crimes and offenses against the Sultanate, consult Immortal Flames Primer: Enemies of the State.)

Chapter 2

Being the Revised Contents of the Literature “On Notorious Monsters, vol.2”

Containing Therein Details Regarding Sundry Further Monsters Held as Notorious

Alux

  • Description

A common-seeming young devilet, Alux is distinguishable from others only by a slight bend and knot in his tail. Some past injury, or perhaps a defect of birth, has fused two of his tail bones at a noticeable angle.

  • Whereabouts

Alux haunts the Mun-Tuy Cellars, wherein he hides his stolen goods. Many forgotten or forsaken corners of the Cellars suffice for him.

  • Threat Assessment

Alux was once no more threatening than any of the Black Shroud devilets. That has changed after his theft of the Kple Kple, a staff made from combining magics of different continents outside Eorzea. The small hexing mask affixed to the end has evidently reacted with Alux's hereditary umbral magic affinity, heightening his power and emboldening him to further robberies. No deaths have yet been attributed to him, but considering his advancing power, a change in that behavior seems only a matter of time.

Bardi

  • Description

A vicious hyena, ragged even by mongrel standards, Bardi's pattern of spots seems to match those of the packs in Northern Thanalan. Unlike those dusty brutes, Bardi's coat is appreciably cleaner and yet beset with tangles. Additionally, his claws are shorter and duller from scrabbling about on rock every moment of the day.

  • Whereabouts

Bardi seems to have taken the Nanawa Mines as his prowling grounds. Sightings have been most frequent in the western half.

  • Threat Assessment

When hyenas are ousted from hyena territory for one reason or another, the males in particular tend to roam into more overtly settled areas, hunting more dangerous fare such as people. Bardi is a case in point, one of the rare few hyenas to have taken refuge in a cave system. In such a dark environment, his sensory acuity is by necessity greater than most other hyenas, and a diet of cave monsters and hapless adventurers has relieved him of all fear.

Barometz

  • Description

The barometz (Agnus scythicus), though superficially no different from most roselings except in greater size, is believed to be a rare new species of parasitic seedkin. Its life cycle is intimately tied with the behavior of wild sheep, such that it cannot exist without them to ingest, carry, and then fertilize its seeds.

  • Whereabouts

All barometz specimens have been collected in a small area of grazing land equidistant from Wineport and Camp Bloodshore in La Noscea.

  • Threat Assessment

The barometz is physically only slightly more dangerous as would be expected of any roseling of its size. Its real threat comes in the way in which it reproduces. The barometz sticks its seeds at the tops of tall grass blades, guaranteeing their ingestion by grazing ewes and rams. Once swallowed, a seed burrows into a sheep's innards, drawing blood and digested food matter until sated, whereupon it causes in the sheep a most painful evacuation. The embryonic barometz then lands upon the soil, surrounded by substantial nutrients for quickened growth.

It is not outside the realm of possibility that the accidental consumption of a barometz seed would have similar effects in people. Most troubling, barometz seeds resemble fallen blackberries in every respect. Eradicating the barometz species before it reproduces is therefore a high priority for the Thalassocracy.

Bomb Baron

  • Description

A bomb of impressive diameter yet no other distinguishing features.

  • Whereabouts

Sightings have fortunately been limited to the western portion of Cassiopeia Hollow.

  • Threat Assessment

Stories tell of the Bomb Baron as a rekindled dead bomb-hunter. There is of course no concrete evidence of that. Regardless, the combustive potential of the Bomb Baron is greatly troubling, being fed by the gases of underground decomposition and mineral-rich fluids available in Cassiopeia Hollow. The Knights of the Barracuda warn any adventurers not to attempt slaying it, for fear of a devastating underground explosion causing cave-ins.

Cactuar Jack

  • Description

A Sabotender del Sol of no particular physical distinction. It may occasionally be differentiated by certain stolen items awkwardly adorning it.

  • Whereabouts

The vast majority of credible thefts from this rogue cactuar have taken place near Nophica’s Wells.

  • Threat Assessment

Cactuar Jack possesses an unusual streak of mischief among cactuars, manifesting in an odd desire for stealing the occasional shiny object laid aside, even briefly, by adventurers. There is some worry that in the future, "he" may no longer simply grab unattended items and run away, but attack people for their armor. Even the faintest threat of cactuars turning openly aggressive is enough to merit his slaying.

Daddy Longlegs

  • Description

A yarzon of advanced age and unusual length of leg.

  • Whereabouts

Sightings have, at the time of this writing, been limited to the canyon route between Nophica's Wells and the Copperbell Mines.

  • Threat Assessment

Yarzons naturally feed by killing prey and then bending low to the ground to eat. Daddy Longlegs has developed the disturbing behavior of bending and killing in the same bite by means of decapitation. As of this writing, six lalafell and a hyur child have already died in such a manner. Individuals under four fulms of height are encouraged to be especially careful.

Downy Dunstan

  • Description

A karakul ram bearing black wool of unnaturally high quality.

  • Whereabouts

Downy Dunstan has taken to roaming the rocks north of Miller’s Glade near Camp Glory in the Eastern Lowlands of Coerthas. It is believed that, being at least partially domesticated, Dunstan takes some comfort in artificial constructions such as windmills.

  • Threat Assessment

Very little. Though his former keeper in the hamlet of Owl’s Nest claims he was highly obstinate and fond of stealing clothes, Dunstan will not attack unless provoked, and even then exhibits no shocking behavior for a ram.

The danger he presents is to Owl’s Nest itself, in a roundabout way. Dunstan is the progenitor of a flock of domesticated karakul bearing wool of double average length and exceptional resilience. Due to his escape, his keeper worries that poachers may make off with him and threaten the future economic viability of his hamlet by way of excess competition. If capture is not an option, slaying Dunstan is reportedly preferable to letting him fall into rival hands.

Gluttonous Gertrude

  • Description

A quite fat dodo, even among fat dodo.

  • Whereabouts

Authorities in the Cedarwood area of La Noscea believe her nest lies somewhere along their portion of coast.

  • Threat Assessment

Gluttonous Getrude is allegedly responsible for devouring the entire contents of a food caravan without becoming ill. The only hard data regarding that event was a sighting of her eating the last morsels of a shipment bearing clear signs of kobold attack. Rumors spread that Gertrude herself was responsible for the attack, and ate not only the food but the caravan driver, who has yet to be found. If she is indeed a man-eater, her slaying cannot come soon enough, but more likely she presents a threat to food stores in the Cedarwood area, particularly Craneperch Tower.

Jackanapes

  • Description

A galago opo-opo, long of claw and thin of fur, which walks with a sinister hunch.

  • Whereabouts

Jackanapes haunts the Rootslake, from which it has been seen diving and snatching for fish.

  • Threat Assessment

Jackanapes is believed to be psychotic. Despite his species’ vegetarian proclivities, his only apparent desire is to catch fish. Any otherwise edible fruits and vegetables he encounters are tucked securely away as though precious. Cursory examinations of such hoards have turned up usable equipment, for reasons unknown.

Jackanapes mostly takes no notice of people, chittering to himself in what passes for language among galago, yet will occasionally turn and maul strangers at the slightest provocative move. A Wood Wailer out on patrol reported that, after observing for some time the Jackanapes catching fish and bashing them against rocks, a simple scratch of her nose resulted in a screaming thrashing assault from the creature. Such unpredictability is a threat to all in the hamlet of Quarrymill.

Kokoroon Quickfingers

  • Description

A qiqirn dressed in black, bearing a shifty look in his eyes.

  • Whereabouts

At the time of this writing, Sultansworn investigators tracking the criminal qiqirn have narrowed his location to Central Thanalan, likely the Nanawa Mines.

  • Threat Assessment

Over his long thieving career, Kokoroon Quickfingers is believed responsible for the theft of two hundred thousand gil in small denominations, along with rare equipment and materials worth much more. He has evaded capture numerous times and has been known to silence any adventurer who discovers him. If spotted, contact the nearest Sultansworn representative or camp warden.

Nest Commander

  • Description

An antling distinguishable only by faint stripes on the thorax.

  • Whereabouts

Reports of Nest Commanders have come primarily from northwest of Camp Horizon in Thanalan, where they have been observed laying scent trails before trekking back in the direction of the Copperbell Mines.

  • Threat Assessment

The caste of Nest Commander does not arise often in antlings. Diggers dig, foragers forage, and commanders prepare for war. The appearance of any Nest Commander is the first sign of a mobilization of antlings toward a nest expansion, new territory occupation, or both.

That such commanders have been seen so close to Copperbell indicates that the nest is seeking to expand, which holds dire portents for all who pass through Horizon's Edge. The Sultanate has taken the nest's behavior as an open declaration of war, and the Sultana herself has extended personal, official, non-monetary praise for any brave enough to kill Nest Commanders on sight.

Old Six-Arms

  • Description

A green megalocrab of advanced age, bearing uncountable numbers of small scars over its carapace.

  • Whereabouts

Fishermen along the shore near Cedarwood have frequently reported sightings of the giant crab.

  • Threat Assessment

Old Six-Arms has been the bane of Cedarwood-area fishermen for over twenty years, but only recently has it been bold enough to venture on land for extended periods. Rumors abound that it has developed a taste for man-flesh after devouring a sailor who dove overboard in an attempt to prevent it from eating the contents of his nets for the thousandth time. Man-eater or no, Old Six-Arms possesses strength enough to snap anchor chains and puncture ship hulls.

Phaia

  • Description

A great and terrible hog with long tusks and fattened sides.

  • Whereabouts

Wood Wailers have, at the time of this writing, successfully contained Phaia in the pass between the Aetheryte nodes of Humblehearth and Sorrel Haven near to Gridania. Ill-founded worries about provoking Greenwrath have thus far prevented them from closing the gap and slaying the beast.

  • Threat Assessment

Phaia gained notoriety among beastmen for eating a sylph elder during a hunt ritual, then gained the same among people for eating an elezen youth -- as well as hunters and wanderers numbering in the dozens. No boar is to be taken lightly, Phaia least of all; unlike wild boars, Phaia has been domesticated just enough to gain a boundless hatred of sapients. The only thing he seems to appreciate about people is how they taste. Make no mistake, he has proven himself as dangerous and insatiable as a morbol. Any attempts to slay him must not be undertaken alone.

Prince of Pestilence

  • Description

A particularly vile gnat, buzzing with tiny parasitic vilekin all its own.

  • Whereabouts

Currently unknown; the parasites which create one are, however, thickest in the Mun-Tuy Cellars.

  • Threat Assessment

Every Prince of Pestilence suffers from vileblight, a poetically appropriate affliction unique to gnats. A very small relative of the gnat invades from behind its neck and establishes a colony in its head. The colony slowly devours the gnat from the inside and commandeers its nervous system, turning it into a living corpse. The diseases fostered in the vile gnat's enthralled body are threatening enough to people that any confirmed Prince of Pestilence merits immediate extermination. If located, contact local Wood Wailers.

Pyrausta

  • Description

A Saltspray Pteroc matron of unusual size and a glint of intelligence in her expression.

  • Whereabouts

Pyrausta has been seen frequently in Western Thanalan, always within sight of the sea. She seems fond of the high sea cliffs.

  • Threat Assessment

At the time of this writing, at least five aldgoat shepherds have fallen prey to Pyrausta. Her strategy is this: her brood harries a domesticated adult aldgoat, drawing out the shepherd to chase them away. Pyrausta then attacks the shepherd from behind, felling him or her for the sustenance of her assault party. Such deviousness illustrates an unusual intelligence which must be prevented from being passed on to any future offspring. Several adventurers have already set out to find her nest in the coastal cliffs, but have never returned.

Queen Bolete

  • Description

A funguar of large size and subtle black freckling about its purple cap.

  • Whereabouts

Queen Boletes grow exclusively along the Tranquil Paths of the Southern Black Shroud, though recently poaching has reduced their prevalence to only the nearest reach of Camp Tranquil.

  • Threat Assessment

Low. The Queen Bolete funguar is famous for being a prime ingredient in a traditional Gridanian sleep aid. The only defenses the species has developed are the induction of sleep, followed by simple bludgeoning.

Sirocco

  • Description

An antelope doe not easily discernible among others, save by experienced huntsmen who can at a glance identify a curve in the division between its blue and white fur.

  • Whereabouts

All sirocco have been sighted near to Amberscale Rock in the Southern Black Shroud.

  • Threat Assessment

Low, despite reports of aggression. The only detail meriting its notoriety is exceptionally hard and dense bones, valued among Thaumaturgists for making a particular kind of staff. Would-be hunters should take caution, lest they find first-hand exactly how hard her leg bones are.

Slippery Sykes

  • Description

Slugs of no particular distinction save occasional splashes of blood in their slime.

  • Whereabouts

The population of Slippery Sykes is, at the time of this writing, confined to the narrow stretch of land between Gullwatch Tower and the bridges to Tiger Helm Island in Eastern La Noscea.

  • Threat Assessment

Slippery Sykes are slugs which have evolved strictly carnivorous tendencies. Though one might think escaping from a slug is a task of no stress, the Sykes are known to immobilize prey and devour at leisure. People are quite high on its menu, and as such the Knights of the Barracuda are intent on rendering the new species extinct. Encroachment into the Camp Bloodshore area is a constant threat, as the Knights must constantly replenish a barricade of dispersed salt to keep the quick-reproducing Sykes at bay.

Beware of any slug south of Gullwatch Tower; the Sykes have already devoured twenty-eight unwary adventurers.

Spitfire

  • Description

A thieving spriggan grown large through apparent overexposure to the aether in its stone.

  • Whereabouts

Spitfire roams the windmills of Miller’s Glade in the Coerthas Eastern Lowlands.

  • Threat Assessment

Spitfire is classified as an enemy of Ishgard for its bold thefts of jewels and other items from merchant caravans bound for the Holy See. The chunk of dense Mor Dhonan crystal which it holds is one such item.

Multiple cardinals have expressed personal annoyance at the brash spriggan, but given Ishgard’s more pressing concerns, no dragoons can be bothered to hunt down the thief. Several adventurers who have tried it alone have been struck down and robbed blind by its powerful command of magic. Be warned: slaying Spitfire all but requires backup.

Unknown Soldier

  • Description

A wandering bogy of no physical distinction. Some adventurers, however, have reported hearing it wail and moan apparent lamentations in a dead Dravanian tongue.

  • Whereabouts

Sightings have been limited to the eastern portion of Cassiopeia Hollow.

  • Threat Assessment

Bogies in general are to be avoided, but the Unknown Soldier in particular possesses lethal skill and a violent disposition. Its name comes from the belief that it is the revenant soul of a warrior from eras past. Though no clear evidence supports any metaphysical theory of its origins, what is clear is that the Unknown Soldier is not content to let any person who encounters it leave alive. No accurate count of its victims exists.

Chapter 3

Being the Revised Contents of the Literature “On Notorious Monsters, vol.3”

Containing Details of Certain Champions Among Beastmen, & Still More Notorious Monsters

Buata

  • Description

A boar of large size yet little physical note.

  • Whereabouts

Buatae have been located wandering about the Turning Leaf area.

  • Threat Assessment

Buatae are distinct from other hogs of the Black Shroud entirely by their connection to the sylphs. They are the remnants of those kept by sylphs for sport and game. Phaia, the boar whose famous sylph-devouring rampage ended the practice of boar-baiting among the sylvan beastkin, was a buata. Adventurers are advised to attack them in groups, never alone.

Capricious Cassie

  • Description

A mighty morbol of terrible temper, her maw positively oozing with corruption.

  • Whereabouts

Within the Turning Leaf area south of Camp Crimson Bark.

  • Threat Assessment

All morbols are of dire threat to the life and senses of any who cross their paths, but the one (or few; it is not known) which frequents Turning Leaf is uniquely dangerous for its furious temper and horrendous breath.

Morbols, as the reader may know, exhale breath most sour, a product of their saliva and the rot of prey left upon their teeth. The Cassie combines the ooze of spit and dead flesh with its own vegetable blood-sap, which it draws via self-inflicted crossjaw bites. Natural alchemy mingles the blood-sap with the decay of the rest of the Cassie’s mouth, forming a thin vile slime easily expelled as rotten mist upon an unspeakably repellant exhale. Those unfortunate enough to touch or inhale even a droplet of the ghastly stuff suffer immediate and extensive agues and disabilities.

With characteristic understatement, adventurers who have smelled the Cassie’s miasmic expulsion have come to call it simply “Bad Breath.”

Flamefist Ahlygg Roh

  • Description

A massive amalj’aa dressed in the armor of the Roh class of aristocratic warriors. The mask alone is enough to mark him, but he carries himself with the distinct humbleness of a devoted martial artist.

  • Whereabouts

Ahlygg trains exclusively in the Zahar’ak stronghold, allegedly to hone his claws day and night against the dread primal Ifrit.

  • Threat Assessment

Ahlygg Roh is a commander of great renown, striving for excellence in the art of destroying foes with body and claw. No accurate count of his defeated opponents exists, but conservative estimates place it in the hundreds. Bodyguards and students, often one and the same, surround him at all times. Nothing short of a dedicated assault team has the slightest chance of victory against his might.

Giant Remora

  • Description

A large orobon, common enough among those members of the species which live in the deep sea. They may be distinguished by their undersides, which are adapted to hook and stick to the hides of quite enormous ocean creatures to gain free transportation thereby.

  • Whereabouts

Some giant remorae have been located in Shposhae. The reason behind their appearance inland is not yet understood.

  • Threat Assessment

Remorae of any kind are a bane of pirates and fishermen for their habits of clinging to ships and devouring whatever they fancy. Inland remorae are no less dangerous, as their gripping undersides allow them purchase upon cavern ceilings, for excellent ambush positioning. Most adventurers are more than capable of slaying them, but a surprise of plummeting teeth upon a neck can fell even the strongest swordsman.

Great Oak

  • Description

A treant (see Addendum below) of advanced age and foul temperament.

  • Whereabouts

Haunting a particular grove near to the Turning Leaf aetherial gate.

  • Threat Assessment

No treant is light work to overcome, and the Great Oak is perhaps the worst. Whereas most treants make up the first mobile line of the Black Shroud’s defense, to the consternation and peril of outsiders, the Great Oak is an individual guardian of its grove. Avoiding it is therefore easy: avoid its grove. Should adventurers stumble across it unknowingly, however, a cautious, calm, immediate departure is recommended.

Take care also not to step upon any pinecones which may lie about the Great Oak’s grove, for they might explode, to great and immediate suffering in the stepper. As with all treants, the Great Oak's seedpods are prone to bursting at dangerous velocity.

Lone Coeurl

  • Description

A massive carnivorous feline famed for its luxuriously spotted hide, long sensory whiskers, and deadly stare. The individual specimen in La Noscea is typical of the specimens located elsewhere in Eorzea.

  • Whereabouts

Most coeurls live too far to the north of the city-states for most adventurers to encounter them. And yet, a lone coeurl has been spotted (so to speak) in Shposhae multiple times by multiple adventurers and Lominsan knights.

  • Threat Assessment

All coeurls are a great danger to life and limb, and not just from their typical carnivorous accoutrements. Their whiskers channel bio-electricity indistinguishable from spells of Lightning. Survivors invariably report talents of paralysis from the same.

The dearth of coeurls elsewhere in La Noscea suggests the lone one is an import -- possibly by the notorious beast-master responsible for Tarbh Uisge, though there is no proof. Regardless of origin, the lone coeurl appears to have taken well to the wet cave environment, an unusual trait among the species. Whether this represents an initial evolutionary divergence or a temporarily adopted refuge is not known.

Lozol Totoloq the Decapitator

  • Description

A quite tall ixal, who may be seen from afar by the large headcrest he wears. It is in fact an item of dress, and not natural feathers, as Ishgardian scouts have reported seeing an errant wind blow it free.

  • Whereabouts

Lozol Totoloq is the general manager of Natalan’s war balloon construction, and so he very rarely leaves that stronghold.

  • Threat Assessment

Totoloq’s height and length of arm grants his scimitar a deadly reach comparable to lancers. Though more aptly called an engineer, he is absolutely a warrior of high caliber, as he has twelve confirmed kills against Ishgard’s dragon knights. He employs numerous goobbues for construction and general labor, up to and including bodyguard duties, so any plan to assail him must take the massive seedkin into account.

For an idea as to the extent of Totoloq’s dangerous temper, consider: according to a captured ixal, his sobriquet “the Decapitator” was given to him not by adventurers or knights, but by the balloon engineers under his employ.

Queen Gougou

  • Description

A common lemur matron, of peak condition, with no unique physical traits.

  • Whereabouts

Upon the main bridge of the Turning Leaf area of the Black Shroud. One may identify her purely by her reluctance to leave her lordly spot in the very center of said bridge.

  • Threat Assessment

The Queen Gougou exhibits signs of compulsive psychosis unknown to most lemurs, manifesting in her fondness of one particular spot on one particular bridge. Logically the bridge serves as a fine vantage from which to espy predators and prey alike, but her utter stubbornness to move from such a trafficked spot makes her a frequent nuisance.

Queen Gougou was named such in jest, as “queen of the bridge,” but her violent turn toward would-be evictors is far from a joke. Even less amusing is the fact that she never lacks for replacements for her territory, and autopsies upon of the bodies of each invariably reveal extensive fungal infection.

The author theorizes that some matron lemurs become infected with the spores of certain funguar, and under fungal thrall seek out that very bridge. When a delayed and annoyed adventurer or Wood Wailer would slay her, the spores would be released from her spilled blood and float away upon the breeze below the high bridge.

Suffice to say, breathing the air about a slain Queen Gougou is not advised. Anyone who experiences sudden preference for heights after encountering one is encouraged to visit, immediately, the nearest doctor and/or professional alchemist.

Ranig’oh

  • Description

A branded drake of tamed ferocity, similar to the Zanig’oh yet not yet etched with magic-resistant runes.

  • Whereabouts

All are bred in Zahar’ak.

  • Threat Assessment

Ranig’ohs are candidates for becoming the next Zanig’oh. The only distinction between candidate and accepted is the series of runes set into the latter.

Shearing Sheridan

  • Description

A megalocrab of no particular physical distinction, but which possesses a thieving habit and sour disposition.

  • Whereabouts

Shearing Sheridan prefers the cool depths of Shposhae, where it may roam freely.

  • Threat Assessment

More of an annoyance than a threat, yet still held as notorious. The monster gained its mild notoriety when a common pirate named Sheridan, flush with drink after his failure to return wealthy from Shposhae, complained at length about a “beastly” crab having stolen his hat.

Adventurers who set foot within Shposhae are advised to tighten their headwear.

Spiteful

  • Description

A large spriggan known to follow the Guardians of the Grove.

  • Whereabouts

Forever in the shade of the Guardians, in the Turning Leaf area of the Black Shroud.

  • Threat Assessment

Minor, yet real. Spitefuls are simple spriggans who have taken up lodging in -- and protection of -- the permanently mobile and nigh-invincible treant battalion known as the Guardians of the Grove. Their attacks can do little but pester a seasoned adventurer into fleeing, but upon fleeing, the Guardians will rouse to the sudden noise and instantly slay the Spiteful’s target.

Those who wish to deal the little annoyances their due are advised to stay perfectly still in the process.

Third Order Patriarch Zu Ga

  • Description

A large kobold bearing the armor of a patriarch: all darksteel and iron. As encountering him is not at all common for anyone, his only physical distinction worth a mention is a devoted surrounding entourage.

  • Whereabouts

The stronghold of U’ghamaro is under Zu Ga’s management. There he may be found at all times.

  • Threat Assessment

Kobold Patriarchs of any order are to be avoided, but Zu Ga is more than himself alone. His thaumaturgical mastery and particular attunement to Earth magic allows him to construct and animate creatures of animated stone called golems (see addendum). That plus his close followers means that Zu Ga ought not be considered an individual but a small army. Descents into his reach are not recommended.

Voidtongue Ahzabb Chah

  • Description

An amalj’aa mage of common appearance yet haughty bearing, forever carrying on his person a flambeau which casts an unsettling flame.

  • Whereabouts

Recent intelligence suggests that Ahzabb Chah uses caves near Nophica’s Wells for gatherings of meditation and education into the arts of summoning for other amalj’aa.

  • Threat Assessment

All of Voidtongue Ahzabb Chah's proven kidnappings of Ul'dahn citizens come secondary to the fact that, eight summers ago, he was allegedly the first to summon the primal Ifrit. He is absolutely not to be underestimated. Contact your local warden if spotted.

Addendum

Being Brief Notations upon Notorious Species

Golems

  • Description

Golems are aetherically animated assemblages of common stones which take on a bipedal shape for ease of locomotion and offense. Their sizes vary, but most are two to three yalms high. They sense entirely by aether, and so can move -- and attack with fatal accuracy -- even in utter darkness.

  • Whereabouts

Though occasionally seen in the Black Shroud as a result of natural aetheric forces, golems are plentiful in La Noscea where kobold magics can conjure them.

  • Threat Assessment

Golems are dangerous to everyone not made of rock. Every punch thrown is the blow of a hurled boulder, and they strike anything perceived as a threat, which is nearly everyone. Wild golems attack with inscrutable discrimination but which errs toward people. Summoned golems attack anything ordered. No other differences have been observed between the two varieties.

Whether golems can feel pain is a point of debate. They are composed entirely of rock and aether, and so have no blood or nerves, yet are observed to react to physical strikes like any creature. It is supposed that the aether in their “bodies” serves as a sort of nervous system. Regardless, golems can sustain great amounts of damage until the integrity of their aether dissolves and they collapse into harmless rubble.

Treants

  • Description

Treants are seedkin resembling large ambulatory trees. When dormant, they appear to be squat banyans with particularly rough bark. When active, they reach and grasp with long spindly arms and appear to emote occasionally by the movement of their eyes and brows.

  • Whereabouts

The Hedge, being weakened in the vicinity of Camp Crimson Bark, has allowed a great number of treants to walk the paths intended for common folk. The greatest concentrations march day and night to the south of the camp near the Turning Leaf gate.

  • Threat Assessment

Treants have lately gained notoriety in the Black Shroud by moving past the border of the Hedge. They have always been common beyond that verdant border kept firm by the Conjurers, but encroachments by Garlean forces have punctured holes in the barrier through which treants now wander. The effect is similar to an injury on the body; as broken skin releases blood, broken Hedge releases treants.

It is worthy of a wise citizen's time to wonder whether the Empire deliberately pierces the Hedge in order to overrun the Shroud with treants, thereby doing the work of destruction for them...