|Common Nicknames||Tonguefish, Blubber|
|Habitat||The North Skags|
The Blubvoldta is a cold-water bottom-dwelling fish with a hideous appearance. While their bloated body gives the appearance of a lazy creature, its quick reflexes, and dangerously sticky tongue make it a fearsome animal. Rarely seen outside of their deep water habitat, they are valuable to alchemists and craftsmen because of their internal body slime. While the substance on its own is disgusting, diluting it with Vocadine or other alcohol-based alchemy mixtures often produce an excellent flame resistant lacquer.
The Bludvoldta was rumored to exist for years by the fisherfolk of the North Skags. Made out to be monsters of the depths and servants of Alu, their tongues would hold down and drown those who had been unfaithful to her Union before the creatures would get to feast on the bodies. The nearby Ithanians however were not impressed, and in 249 AC, an expedition of Ithanian hunters and fishermen sought to track down one of these creatures. Their search took them nearly a month when, purely by accident, a deep sweep by one of their nets scooped up a young Blubvoldta. This event definitively proved their existence, and soon afterward, an Ithanian alchemist got his hands on and experimented with Blub Slime, thereby discovering its usefulness.
Since then, the Blubvoldta has grown in profile in the minds of craftsmen and alchemists. As they are bottom-dwellers, however, they remain elusive. Some fishermen have learned minor tricks and traps to increase their chances of capturing Blubvoldtas. The mythos that surrounds them is not going away anytime soon, since the religion of the Old Gods has become increasingly concentrated around the North Skags.
Blubvoldtas are repulsive, bottom-dwelling fish with a disgusting body. The bottom of their bodies are flat and smooth while their backs and sides appear bloated and lumpy. The small gliding fins at their sides are blocked this bloating, and so they cannot effectively swim or flit through the water. Their eyes are small and black, set very close to the surface of and the front of the body. Their mouths, as well as some of their gills, are found on their flat chests and up close to the front. Their mouths are up to a foot long vertically with small white and crude teeth visible. Inside of the mouth, however, is a tapering tongue with little barbs on the end. This tongue can reach multiple feet in length. While the tongue is often black or a dark blue, Blubvoldta skin, by contrast, is often unnatural shades of pale, beige, or white. Their unique aspect, the internal slime which coats their tongues, is a slightly transparent black or dark green goop.
Blubvoldtas lack any physical exterior gender differences. In fact, they are agender and briefly change sexes when the time to mate does come. Regarding natural coloration, there are no set regional differences, and the entire pattern is random.
Life Span and Development
Blubvoldtas are rare to be born, but the process begins with two Blubvoldta meeting each other. Agender until the needed act, their internal physiology will briefly change to the required components over the course of nearly a week. Blubvoldtas eggs are hatched out into a single sack of three to four individual soft shelled eggs. Attached to the seafloor their unappetizingly colored sack, made from the same substance as their goo, keeps predators away. Growing inside the sack for upwards of a month, the young Blubvoldtas emerge small and immediately begin to grow. They remain children until the age of five, youth until the age of twenty and now adults, can live up to sixty years in the depths of the ocean. As adults, they can then mate but this usually only occurs once or twice during their lifetime.
The Blubvoldta seem fairly mindless in all but one regard. Bottom feeders, they move across the sea floor, feeding mostly on carrion. They rarely even see another member of their species which is why they adapted to be agender. They are aggressive in one regard, though. Despite their slow appearance, they have the ability to sharply raise their upper body and crack out their tongue to grab unsuspecting prey. They most likely only do this when hungry and lacking carrion but also when they are distressed, namely when they are hauled up to the surface by fishermen.
Territory and Groupings
Blubvoldtas spend their lifetimes moving across the depths of the ocean, conforming their movement patterns to the dark sea depths as well as tensing nearby carrion. They rarely ever see another one of their kind and when they do, always take the week long process to mate with them. They current are only found to reside in the depths of the ocean in and around the North Skags.
- An old Northern folk tale tells of how a brave hero accidentally offended Alu and so she called upon Blubvoldtas to drag him under the sea when he got involved in a swimming competition with a friendly rival. He defeated the monstrosities and still won the competition.
- One of the ways fisherfolk try to lure Blubvoldtas in to fish them out is using dead whale carcasses from the whaling trade in and around the North Skags. Dropping the corpse into the water, the fishermen wait for a week or two before they trawl the bottom, hoping to snag an attracted Blubvoldta.