Nose Neighbors are fungi discovered by adventures and cultivated throughout the sub-community. It is unknown if these creatures came about naturally, were magical experiments, or flukes of chaotic magic, and with the many different varieties present, some or all of the different origins may be true. Where ever they came from, they all share common characteristics:
Narrow, dense stalks covering one side of the growth.
Placement on host.
Coloration and length vary, as does ‘style’, how the Nose Neighbor appears on its host. As the name implies, The symbiote attaches near the hosts nostrils, and shares the air the host breathes and many only flourish if they can feed from nearby food orifices as well, earning them the nick name “Soup Strainers”, a sub-species of fungi. While unable of true communication, the fungi are empathic, and many adventurers develop relationships similar to a pet’s owner with their Nose Neighbor. Basic feelings of hunger, fear, rage, and so forth can be communicated, although some fungi show characteristics of higher functions bordering on telepathy.
Some notable species of Nose Neighbors include:
Death Breath – Dark Greyish-Green with a thick bushy drapery, these fungi has poisonous spores growing amongst its stalks, and can release them when it senses its hosts need. By taking a deep breath in and then exhaling, the spores are released into a venomous cloud that affects a short range in front of the host. Death Breath protects its host from its own spores, filtering them through its stalks, and may absorb some other hazardous conditions as well.
Charlatan’s Beard – Natural appearance is a cluster of variegated stalks of wildly differing lengths. On its host, it can become whatever style and color of moustache the host wills, similar in behavior to a chameleon or a shape shifter. Some groups have formed to have contests for the longest growth presented, or most artistic beard, with eagles, waterfalls and mountains appearing on contestants’ faces.
Soup Strainer – The ‘parent’ of the Soup Strainer sub-species, it appears as a thick and bushy grey growth that reaches to the host’s lower lip. As food passes through or by the fungus, it neutralizes any contaminants or poisons within, sustaining itself on such matter, or taking a portion of the food if it needs to.
Whiskers of Doom – Attaching itself flanking the nostrils from below and with its notable long length and deep black coloration, these fungi has a sinister reputation and purpose. When willed, the stalks lash out and constrict the throat of a creature nearby the host wills it to. While its reach is only a few feet, some kingdoms have outlawed its use.
The Tickler – One of the most subtle of Nose Neighbors, this appears as a thin line with short stalks matching the host’s hair. When desire strikes the host, a mixture of pheromones and mind altering spores can be released, improving the ‘mood’ of the subject the host is talking to. Other effects are rumored, but few have been confirmed and they may be a sub-species of the main Tickler species.