Girsh frequent grassy terrains. They prefer the long-dried grass of
plains and hills, especially so during the summer times when the
stalks have come to grow to an immense height. Understandably, they
can be found in fields with wheat as well. A Girsh digs a low burrow
for itself, though tends not to remain in one place for too long. These
burrows then become either claimed by other creatures, or sometimes
cave in underneath the feet of unfortunate travelers. Though not deep,
the holes can cause some great damage to the wheels of wagons, the
legs of horses and of man alike if caught unexpected.
Girsh are normally solitary animals, but can band together into packs
when food is scarce - normally during harsh winters where they might
start raiding farmers livestock out of desperation.
Small, rare creatures, an average-sized Girsh's back reaches to the knees
of a man. While much of its muscle mass contributes to substantially
plump and powerful legs, the creature remains capable of moving very
swiftly and low upon its haunches. Visually almost resembling a cross
between a rabbit and a lion the Girsh has a creamy mane that sprouts
out from beneath its eyes towards its chin and down
into a ruff upon its chest from there. Girsh coat colours range from
creamy whites, browns and gold to a rarer yellow. Its facial features
are more leonine than anything else, with dark-ringed, yellowish eyes
and a pink nose which extends out from a prominent bridge. The
similarities to a lion end there, however.
Probably its most defining characters is the Girsh's tail and ears.
The ears are long and flat, often extending well past the actual
span of the creatures body and are extraordinary fine-haired.
Despite being rather floppy, the Girsh's ear is an muscle of its
own kind. Its able to bend and move the ears as it wishes, which
can be often found to be rather comical for any onlooker, if not
At its rear, the Girsh has a long tail that splits into two similar
segments halfway up, both leading to wispy tips. Its tail is capable
of the same movements as the ear.
The Girsh's tail is its friend. When joyful, it wags it around,
keeping the fine-haired tips clear off the ground. The tail is also
used to find its prey. A Girsh will turn in a circle for near on ten
minutes in a favoured sunny spot in the long, dried grass, then curl
itself up there to bask joyfully during the day. During this, its tail
will wrap its tip over the nearest, longest blades of grass that it
can find, blending in. Not only are the fibers of the tail able to
pick up vibrations through the length of grass that travel up from the
ground far below, but its also able to 'see' the field. While one tail
point clutches, the other stands up like a Rabbits Ear Plant, swaying
lightly in the wind and making the Girsh more unobtrusive and well
camouflaged. The rabbits ear plant is a common weed that grows in fields.
Attacking - Prey
A girsh pounces upon its victims with a gigantic jump, normally with
enough force to knock over. Lodging both its jaws and forepaws
upon the highest part of the unfortunate individual or animal, it will
do massive damage by kicking inwards with its great hind paws and
dragging the nails across the areas below in a furious digging
movement. (imagine the way that cats tend to attack hands by their
tummies - or rabbits kick at the ground). This serves to normally flail
its prey up to the point where death is nearly instantaneous due to
ruptured organs. Their favorite prey are the long-necked bill-beaks
who eat mice and insects. They have been known to attack people,
but tend to favor children since they are closer to being 'bite sized'
The Girsh's tail is a valued alchemical component. Alchemists use the
fibers from the tips to create potions with unique properties. One of
these is called Blydwyn. http://strolen.com/viewing/6451
Girsh's ears are exceptionally soft and smooth, and girsh-ear scarves
are considered a rage amongst the nobility. Nobles would pay ridiculously
exorbitant prices for this status symbol and its especially popular when
small, bright-threaded engravings have been done over the base.
There are some accounts of Girsh being domesticated.
Plot hooks - to work in there as a sideline plot somewhere:
A fat merchants wants the attention of a beautiful lady, and wishes to
hire the pcs to find a Girsh scarf.
An alchemists is in desperate need of a Girsh tail.
A farmer community is harrowed by a pack of Girsh.
A distraught family's child has been killed by a Girsh.
A wagon is stuck on the road due to having encountered a Girsh-hole.
The desperate merchants need his shipment to be taken to the town/
village it has to be delivered to, in time for a wedding.
A rich noble wishes a Girsh kitten.
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? Responses (4)
Another top-notch submission. I love how all of your animals seem pausable and well tailored to their environment. The plot hooks seem a little on the thin side, but I'm still glad they're there. Thanks so much for posting the picture as well, most of your submissions are so clear I don't need one, but this creature is particularly complex looking.
Giant Rabbits of Doom.
Tundra, I too am a fan of your creatures. I'd take a moadi bird over a Girsh in my campaign, but this critter is also damn good. Nice mix of facts and fantasy!
Also, what Cheka said. Except, Giant Leonine-Rabbits of Doom!
Pretty cool, though with the long ears, I assume they do not engage in too many territorial fights.