A Shike is a large bat like creature living in mountain caves or anywhere dark. They can be easily classified by their lesser versions, numerous and pack-like, to their greaters, whom are often alphas, and almost always female. The lesser creatures may grow to a size of over 2 meters with a wingspan of over 5 meters, while the greaters can be up to 4 meters, with a wingspan of over 8. They are capable of lifting smaller creatures from the ground entirely and even carrying them a long distance to their nests with ease. Their faces are elongated, muzzle extending almost a foot forward with large fangs visibly hanging down. They feed on their prey by biting down and draining the blood through a proboscis like tongue that follows after the bite wounds have been created.
Most of a Shike is covered in a thick wiry fur ranging in color from grays, browns and blacks. Their eyes sit near the top of the head and are surprisingly sharp even in daytime, despite their preference for hunting at night.
A greater Shike will produce between 1 and 3 pups, while the lesser are merely mates to allow this to happen. These pups are born on the ground and do not gain flight until they are around a month old. During this time, the pups are incredibly vulnerable and their parents incredibly defensive. One will always remain within close proximity to the nest while the others hunt for prey, often bringing it back alive to ensure the blood remains warm and fresh.
Shike have an array of options they may use to attack their prey. A Shike can use its wings to batter and blind its opponents rather easily with strong gusts of wind. In an enclosed space they become deadly when swung with force, though can also reduce the Shikes ability to move and stay airborne. For instance, their wings can be used to deflect arrows, but are ineffective against crossbow bolts. The deadly shriek of a Shike can disorientate and deafen those unlucky enough to be caught in close proximity. The proboscis tongue of a Shike also delivers a powerful numbing sedative to those who are caught, as the purpose of this sedative is to prevent the prey from escaping or fighting back while being fed upon. Their jaws are capable of crushing bone and tearing, and a Shike's talons can be used when swooping towards a target, a Shike may use its talons to grip or cut through flesh, and anything minus plate.
Greater Shike's also carry a dangerous curse within their bloodstream. Perhaps because of some malign influence, if bitten by a greater Shike, the Vallah curse will almost instantly transfer into your body, and take hold in your blood. If you don't die immediately afterwards, this can be removed as one would normally with a cure.
They are rarely seen outside their caves during daylight hours, only leaving their dwellings if startled, while lessers are not the most common, greaters are certainly rare.
These creatures generally live in large flocks, inhabiting open cave systems in numbers of between 15-20. They generally live not far from the cave entrance, requiring a clear path in and out.
Primarily are night hunters normally feasting on small creatures. Larger specimens may take livestock.
Shikes are untameable; often highly aggressive as well as lethal towards prey and provoking people. Ones who happen to have a nest of young are even more-so defensive. Some may know them to be occasionally revered by necromatic forces, making this sort of beast commonly feared by those who have encountered them in this state before.
- If a Greater Shike manages to inflict a bloody wound with it's fangs on any beings not immune or blessed with resistance against the Vallahism curse, the sheer concentration instantly infects and spreads through the person's bloodstream within five minutes, causing an immense amount of bodily pain to the point of frothing and unconsciousness, though they will awake with the curse thereafter, and all it's effects given they are not killed by the Greater Shike immediately.
- The talons and teeth of a Shike are more then capable of piercing any armor except plate with ease. It takes an extra emote for the teeth to pierce plate or better.
- The wings of a Shike can be beat to create near-gale force winds that can create both a buffeting and annoying draft if one is not careful.
- The wings of a lesser Shike are excellent for gliding, and if properly attached to a somewhat light person, can be used in a gliding suit or contraption. Greaters can allow even some of the heaviest beings to glide as well, such as orcs.
- The wiry hair of Shikes can be used to scrub off rust and other such oxidation with ease, thus reclaiming old weapons that have been lost to time.
- The ears of a Shike can contribute toward any alchemicals that grant an enhanced sense of hearing.
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