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Comments: 6
Ideas: 0
Rating: 3.25
Condition: Stub
ID: 5794


May 23, 2009, 11:06 pm

Author Status


Floating Marches


Elephants crossing the seas!

 Every three years, like clockwork, there are vast migrations across one of the world's largest seas. But it is not sea birds or swimming beasts that are migrating, it is a large group of those mammoth beasts, elephants. But how, you ask, is this possible? Easily explained. They ride on the Floating Marches. But again, you have a question! What are these Floating Marches? I'll answer that as well, but it will take a little longer.

 Over the course of almost three years, the drifting branches and leaves that are washed out of rivers into the sea build up all along the coast. They are trapped in the folds and fjords of this great land. After that time of gathering, the mounds stand yards high; this is when the elephant herds arrive. A few of the great beasts carefully board the makeshift rafts and trample them down until nearly flat. Then the rest of the herd boards the, now firmer and, thus, safer, raft. Then, with a giant shove, the journey starts. The float trip lasts for several days, usually, and the elephants, during this time, eat only a little, and that from the raft itself.
 At the end of the trip, the elephants disembark onto dry land once again, and go to feast upon the lush greenery that has stood, relatively untouched, for almost three years. The next time that the drifts accumulate, the herd is ready to cross the other way across the sea.

 Not all of the herds make it across the sea every trip. Storms, predators, disease, and breaking up of rafts have all added to the number of deceased elephants. But at each journey time, the number fo the beasts is relatively unchanged from the year before.

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Comments ( 6 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Cheka Man
May 24, 2009, 17:22
Nice if a little implausible.
October 28, 2009, 17:03
You could say the same about magic...
Voted Moonlake
May 24, 2009, 19:48
It's an okay submission in the sense that it describes the phenomenon well but I only give a 3 because it doesn't mention why such a phenomenon occurs i.e. why do elephants want to migrate across the sea every 3 years?
May 25, 2009, 17:47
There are so many things about this submission that just make me want to scratch my head.
1. Why do the elephants migrate?
2. Why are there elephants in an ecosystem where there are fjords and folds?
3. Why does it take 3 years for the floating marches to build up?
4. How do the elephants get back, or is it a one way migration?
5. Don't elephants, being large herbivores, need to eat almost constantly? Why dont they starve on the trip across the water?
May 29, 2009, 3:09
Mm, Scrasamax picked off most of my questions. I've two other comments: elephants are quite intelligent, and are credited by many scientists with a high degree of self-awareness and sentience. Beyond that, errr ... what could possibly cause enough debris to float up in these fjords to bear the weight of an elephant herd, and keep it all there, only for it to all conveniently dislodge just at the push of an elephant or three, and to keep on floating seaward even when there's no more motive force? Sounds more high concept ("Hey, wouldn't it be cool to have migratory elephants crossing the sea?") than anything else.
October 20, 2010, 20:10

Rafting is accepted theory for the spread of many species, New World Monkeys for example.  Of course in a fantasy realm you take any natural event and turn the volume up to 11.  So you get elephants rafting, of course why not make it a huge fantasy animal?


Why raft?  Without natural predators, elephant populations can be very destructive to the ecosystem, a population which thins its number from time may actually prove to be more stable over the long term.  Thus the rafting herds would over take the boom crash herds over many years.  But you could make up other reasons...

Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: Monument

When the characters approach a clearing in the forest, they will see 4 ogres who are guarding, and preventing from escape, 4 human males, and 3 human females. The ogres will see the party and leap to attack. The females will scream "OUR SAVIORS!!" and run screaming straight across the currently forming battlefield, in between ogres and party members, to hide behind the rearmost party members. They will be safe there. The males will try to skirt the battle to the north side to join the women.

To the south, giants will be hiding in the thick underbrush until the party has engaged the ogres and then attack the most opportune target EXCEPT the ones that the females are next to.

It should be noted that the female commoners are not female commoners at all, nor are the male commoners actually male commoners. The female commoners are the hags, who have polymorphed themselves as the commoners in their stewpot to escape detection. The males skirting the battle are actually MORE ogres, the hags were in the process of polymorphing ALL the ogres into regular humans for ambush purposes. The REAL commoners are already dead, having found their way into the coven's cauldron for dinner.

The hags (the women) will position themselves near to any spellcasters in the rear first, and then near anyone else in the back of the fight. The ogres (the men) will wait until the hags shift form, and then attack first the rear folks, then shift into the melee.

It is possible that the characters, as they approach the ogres, will notice the giants in the bush, and be able to warn the others of the ambush.

GAME NOTES: If you sell the screaming women correctly, they will not even be suspected until it is too late. Therein lay the problem. This encounter is ESPECIALLY deadly to the rear eschelon of the party. It is entirely possible that the hags will finish off half the party before they even realize they have been duped. Caution is required if the game master wishes to avoid a TPK(total party kill).

Encounter  ( Forest/ Jungle ) | July 14, 2005 | View | UpVote 2xp

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