|Official Name||Giant Spider|
|Common Nicknames||Eight Legs, Fender Spider|
|Habitat||Fendarfelle, Some Major Port Cities|
The Giant Spider is considered one of the most terrifying creatures on the continent of Fendarfelle. This fact has baffled scholars, since this is true merely because of the fact that is a Giant Spider, and not really considerate of the fact that it is dangerous. Although creatures like Kyanprat and other, much larger, fauna are the source of many horror stories and tribulations, the Giant Spider is often the go-to for many novellas and tall tales. Even in comparison to the rest of Fendarfelle’s native fauna, the Giant Spider is a classically terrifying beast for most any Alorian.
The exact origins of the Giant Spider are unknown, though scholars theorize that a combination of competition with Fendarfelle’s other predators and magic assisted their predecessors in reaching the size that Giant Spiders are eponymous for today. They are known to have predated the Cataclysm, and were found in both Drowda and Fendarfelle before the devastating world event. When the Archdemon came to Aloria, one of the first creatures it corrupted were these spiders, resulting in the Drow Giant Spider, while on Fendarfelle the Giant Spider needed to adapt to compete with other species doing the same. They began to live deeper in the jungles in order to avoid the destruction caused between the Cataclysm and the new Fender Felle volcanoes and now are almost exclusively found there. Afterwards, they began having to compete with the larger and more intelligent Ithanian Ailor for their food in 200 AC. The Giant Spider underwent another growth spurt to match this. Recently they have been popping up in places like Regalia and other major port cities, due to smuggling, and avid “collectors” taking an interest in trying to domesticate them.
The Giant Spider most closely resembles spiders like tarantulas, as they have larger, thicker bodies and more hair than those that are thin or sleek. Their abdomens make up a small portion of their total body, and is segmented into two sections. Giant Spiders can be up to eight feet tall and twelve feet long. The abdomen is responsible for holding most of the Giant Spiders reproductive and defensive organs, including silk glands and spinnerets, and is located at the back of the spider with no legs connected to it. The front part of the body, or the cephalothorax, is responsible for organs such as the heart, lungs, and other major organs, as well as connecting the legs to the rest of the body. The head is attached to the cephalothorax, and the Giant Spider has no distinguishable neck or division between the two. The head features a set of six eyes, four are located on the front and two are located laterally on both sides of the head. The head region of the cephalothorax contains the brain, the mouth, poison glands, and their fangs. Giant Spiders are most commonly shades of brown. Their legs are segmented into eight sections, and are capable of a wide range of motion.
Smaller Giant Spiders, like those that live near civilization, are exclusively male, while larger variants are exclusively female. Male Giant Spiders are much smaller than their female counterparts, and are usually unintelligent, while female Spiders are much larger and can be as intelligent as some Nelfin. Male Giant Spiders stand at around three feet tall and five feet long, and females can be up to eight feet tall and nearly twelve feet long. Male Giant Spiders are much faster and can spray or inject venom is strongly acidic and capable of melting through steel and flesh. Female Giant Spiders can produce venom that is either acidic or paralytic, and can spray this up to twice their body length. Female Giant Spiders also have six fangs, two sets of spinnerets capable of producing more durable webs, and four sets of silk glands. Male giant spiders have only two fangs, one set of spinnerets, and a small set of silk glands.
Life Span and Development
Male Giant Spiders venture into the jungle once a year to fertilize eggs laid by the Female spiders. Male Giant Spiders will compete in gladiator style combat to decide who will mate with the Female and continue to live, while the others will die and be used to feed the spider hatchlings. These eggs sacs contain anywhere between ten and twenty eggs, though only a quarter of the spiders will survive after they have hatched. The mother spider will abandon the egg sacs after she lays the eggs, and leave the new hatchlings to fight amongst themselves for food and survival. Spiders are mature, for the most part, from the time they hatch, which can take about two months. The only development they experience is an increase in size. Male Giant Spiders can live up to fifty years, though will often be killed or cannibalized well before then, and female Giant Spiders are capable of living up to two hundred years.
Much like smaller spiders, they are reliant on building webs to catch their prey, which can be anything from an Eronidas to schools of fish. While male Spiders are hostile and aggressive, female Spiders are terrifyingly intelligent. Female Giant Spiders have shown that they are capable of advanced levels of communication and have developed their own language involving clicks of various pitches and other similar shrill noises. Female Spiders have also been shown to have vast memories and high levels of both crystallized and fluid intelligence, and have been shown to be able to plan ahead and create advanced traps. Male Spiders are much less intelligent and act based on necessity.
Territory and Groupings
Male Spiders can, and do, hunt in and live in packs, while females are only ever solitary creatures. Male Giant Spiders are not overly territorial, and will form groups called clutters. Female Giant Spiders are very territorial and have been known to hunt and kill other female Spiders to expand their territory. They both live on and arounds webs built into the treetops.
- Giant Spider venom is prized for its wide variety of uses, but is incredibly hard to come by for obvious reasons. It can be distilled and used to make an incredibly paralytic poison.
- There are tales passed around the cities of Fendarfelle about a hyper intelligent Female Giant Spider who lives in the deepest part of the Fendarfelle jungles nicknamed Reine de la Forêt. She is said to patrol a large section of the Fendarfelle forest that is purely dead trees bound together by dense webs. Another version says that she can speak and possess magical powers.
- Male Giant Spiders can respond to commands in various languages or even their own languages, and males can be herded. There are some of these ‘Spider Ranches’ that specialize in the breeding of spiders and extraction of venom for sale. These ranches always have one female and a host of males, and there are no exceptions.
- Both Giant Spiders and Giant Spider venoms are illegal in most major ports.