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Comments: 10
Ideas: 0
Rating: 4.3125
Condition: Normal
ID: 2892


August 23, 2009, 9:38 pm

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Cheka Man

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The Hek


"I have seen the beast, tentacled and cruel.  Tore out me eye, it did, like pickin’ a plum.  It’s cursed, I tell ye, cursed to its cold heart."
-Jerboam the Sailor

Misunderstood and much maligned, the Hek is a traveller who dreads violence.  If it only understood the violence it caused.


The Hek has a monstrous appearance, a three meter long mass of tentacles and feelers.  Two pairs of dorsal stalks arise from the creature’s back.  The Hek flies by unknown propulsion, but can move with considerable speed.

Eons ago, an advanced sea-dwelling race that called themselves the Ghresh desired to explore what lay beyond the cold and waterless barrier above their home.  Their bodies were far too sensitive for the journey, however, and they would die from decompression even before reaching the surface.  They chose to create an explorer, a creature that could adjust to the decompression and survive without life giving water.  With a combination of magic and genetic engineering, they created over time a being.  Its body was flexible, made of a thick web of feelers connected to a flexible ganglion brain mass that was intelligent enough to collect information.  Four stalks housed its other organs while providing a place for a recording system and food reserves.  Only one of these intelligent creatures were created, and they called it the Hek.

The Hek was sent out, and everything went according to plan: the body compressed without crushing itself, and the recording equipment trasmitted data back to the Ghresh.  It worked perfectly.  For several decades, the Ghresh studied the landscape and creatures of the surface.  They also saw something strange in the sky: a bright yellow orb and a dark red stone.  The stone grew brighter and larger as the months passed, but they had no reason to believe it was unusual.  Perhaps it was a seasonal growth, as the corals or the kelp grow.  Unfortunately for the Ghresh, it was not a normal event: the stone was a meteor headed straight for the planet.  It eventually crashed into the ocean, creating cataclysmic tsunamis and burning the land.  The Ghresh were killed, along with all the planet’s life.

Except for the Hek.  Its durable composition and flexible body allowed it to survive even the heat and dense air.  Oblivious to the destruction around it, it continued to explore, recording all it saw on the devices the Ghresh provided.  It survived by eating what soil and plant matter remained, able to digest nearly anything.  Slowly life returned, grew, and flourished.  The Hek took samples of this life to analyze with its sensitive feelers, killing it in the process but preserving its chemical and biological information.

Eventually Men, Elves, and other sentients came into being.  They, too, were analyzed by the Hek, sometimes personally.  The Hek cannot distinguish emotion or morality, and thus would sometimes "hunt" sentients to analyze them, plucking out hair, eyes, or limbs with its feelers.  The Hek saw no problem with this, as its function was to send data to the Ghresh (not realizing the Ghresh are long gone).  Men and others, however, saw the Hek as a fell beast to be feared.  Nothing seemed to kill it, as it digested and analyzed spears and arrows that were hurled at it.  Despite its destructive nature, it means no harm.  The Hek is simply doing its job.

Special Equipment
Visual recorders - devices created by the Ghresh that sit atop one of the Hek’s organ stalks.  They consist of an independent pair of cameras that move about on two flexible cords.

The stalks themselves also act as equipment, as they can anchor various flora and fauna that the Hek can use as a food source.  The Hek is apparently fond of invertabrates, particuarly insect larvae.

Roleplaying Hooks
What the heck is that?! - The party comes across a large red floating mass of tentacles and feelers floating through the forest, examining fungi and plantlife.  They’ve heard rumors of it from villagers, that it devours crops and slaughters men.  It looks like it may be headed toward the village again, where it will probably terrorize the populus.  The players should do something about it.  The Hek can be killed if its organ stalks are cut off, but these are quite sturdy and the Hek moves quickly, capturing most weapons in its net of feelers.  Perhaps they can distract the Hek and send it off in another direction, away from the village.  The PCs look like awfully interesting specimens to the Hek…

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Comments ( 10 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Murometz
July 23, 2006, 19:56
Hmmmm, a cyborg-submersible-Nemo-UFO-type-of-thingy. Ofcourse! Why didnt I think of that! :P A little competition for the The Characon

Visual Recorders-Nice!
Voted Cheka Man
July 24, 2006, 13:22
5/5 for this beast that is not what it seems.
Voted Pariah
July 24, 2006, 13:30
Only voted
Voted CaptainPenguin
July 24, 2006, 13:40
Voted Dragon Lord
July 25, 2006, 9:11
Now that is simply bizarre – I love it – 5/5
Voted Mourngrymn
July 26, 2006, 5:07
Bizarre isn't a word I would use but it is different. I like it, a tentacle to you.
Voted Spark
August 13, 2006, 23:32
VERY cool idea. For some reason it even feels a little Asimov-ish to me, but I don't know why. I always love those high-tech ancients, and ditto to what the others said about creating a wonderfully unique and exotic creature. Brings a welcome splash of creativity into any dull world!
December 13, 2007, 16:56
Bumping this perverse, bizarre, and nifty thingy :)
August 23, 2009, 21:22
Update: Updated Graphic
Voted valadaar
April 29, 2013, 22:03
I love this - so odd and strange. We should do this again.


Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: Raptyr

Nine times out of ten, it’s the undead that do the running.

Not strictly animal or vegetable, the Corpse bud is a peculiar individual that shares characteristics from multiple kingdoms and species. In appearance, all corpse buds bear a shape of a large rounded top bud divided into four lateral segments, and a much longer, narrower bottom bud, also divided into four segments. Between the two halves are a set of four radial limbs, rounded on top and flat on the bottom, covered with tiny serrated hooks facing towards the body. In overall size, it’s limbs reach as wide as a spread hand, with the body being as thick as a fist. It is as long as a human hand from top to bottom.

Internally, the top bud of the corpse bud contains a bacteria filled membrane that produces the hydrogen that the corpse bud uses to stay aloft, and a series of fungal gills for the dispersal of spores for reproduction. The lower half of the bud contains a number of fine filaments, as well as a sharp barbed stinger containing a powerful local anaesthesia.

The Corpse Bud mobilizes by inflating its top bud, and steers by rotating its arms rapidly about its body. The corpse bud ordinarily drifts with the wind, orienting towards the scent of recent decay and death. It preys on the recently dead, burrowing the lower bud into the victim, using the anaesthesia in case the victim is dying, and not truly deceased. Once embedded, it releases its filaments into the body, replacing the current nervous system. This gives it full animation of the body, and allows the corpse bud to direct it.

Corpse buds are not a malevolent species, being primarily concerned with breaking down the host body for food, and infecting the reproductive cycle with spores in order to mate with other corpse-bud bodies. To preserve the corpse for this purpose, Corpse buds will seek out dry locations to prevent bacteria from destroying the corpses. This often causes a large number of corpse buds to gather in a single location.

In culture, Corpse buds are used to repair broken spines or degenerative diseases, as the sentient mind will easily overcome the mind of the non-sentient corpse bud. Once infected by a corpse bud, however, removal is usually fatal, and the infected individual cannot reproduce, or risk infecting another. Thus, it is a technique often reserved for the elderly, or a last resort.

Necromancers and other dark sorcerers will often preserve the corpses of their victims magically, and infect them with corpse buds, creating traditional undead as well, so as to seed their lairs with undead both offensive and non, in order to throw their enemies off balance. They will also enslave the rudimentary minds of the corpse buds, and transform the docile things into a plague. There have also been accounts of magically transformed corpse buds with stronger minds and a taste for living flesh, but thus far all accounts are unproven rumors.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | October 12, 2011 | View | UpVote 3xp

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