|Habitat||Humid, warm places with large, open landscapes of grass and vegetation.|
The Grashobaig is a large snail found near and around the border between Hyarroc and Daendroc. Normally the size of a horse, these slow and docile creatures are seemingly harmless, though their defense mechanism holds a dark and dangerous threat to any who approach with intention of harm. While they grow at fast rates and breed regularly, their numbers are dwindling in the Dark Iron Tribelands and Blood Clan Tribelands due to hunting from Orcs who seek to best one of the grand gastropods as a challenge of skill.
First Recorded Encounter
The Grashobaig was technically first discovered by the Orcs who fled from Guldar to Daendroc, though the first recorded encounter was not until 221 A.C. after soldiers from Metta Telduin came across the huge creatures on the borders of their state. At first, nobody bothered to approach one, but one particularly brash Talar came too close to the snail and was caught by a blast of poison, later dying from a heart attack in the local barracks. It was agreed that these oddities would be left alone, lest others suffer a similar fate.
The Grashobaig is a valuable creature, given that its ivory-like shell has aesthetic value, and its slimey trail holds a deadly poison. Due to this, the snail has been hunted throughout the years for both challenges and for promise of coin. As a result, the Grashobaig numbers are quite low, especially in the Dark Iron Tribelands. It is said that no more than a thousand are currently left roaming the fields and plains of Daendroc.
On average, the Grashobaig snail reaches the height of a horse, being about 5 to 6 feet in height from the ground. This is not to say they can’t grow bigger, as some have been recorded to be on par with an Orc in height. The actual snail itself however, minus the shell, never comes higher than three feet. In appearance, the Grashobaig has waxy skin which comes in a range of tones from a mellow orange to vivid green, and has four eye stalks upon which sit bulbous red eyes. At the rear of the snail rests its shell, whereas the snail’s actual ‘foot’ is the mouth.
Notable Physical Traits
The shell of the Grashobaig is notoriously valuable for several different reasons. The Grashobaig will, if threatened, hide within its shell as a means of defense and preservation due to the durability of the shell’s exterior. While appearing frail, a Grashobaig shell is said to withhold the strongest of blows. Furthermore, the shell has an iridescent, pearly coating which is prized for use in jewellery. Most shells are spiral-shaped or conical, though others are known to have spines, spikes, or knobs protruding from them.
In addition, the Grashobaig secretes a poison in its slime. Having originated in the tainted land of Guldar, the toxic atmosphere there provoked the Grashobaig’s ancestors to develop a thick, deadly substance which could be excreted through its slime. This poison proves to be quite formidable, taking down the hardiest of Orc warriors. Alongside the poison released through the slime, a Grashobaig can forcibly ‘spit’ poison` through a collection of short tubes on the snail’s skin, meaning it can ward off predators who come too close. Such poison is clear and watery, and constricts the muscles in the neck if given in strong doses. This eventually leads to suffocation for the unfortunate victim. If in smaller doses then the victim is prone to fainting and having long-term breathing problems.
Origin and Diversity
Although the Grashobaig originated in Guldar, they were unknowingly transported over to Daendroc during the Orcish Invasion, and developed in what is now the Dark Iron Tribelands, where they can still be found today. There are also flocks of Grashobaig located in the north of Metta Telduin, where they grow unheeded by the threat of Orcs.
Life Span and Development
A Grashobaig usually lives for around ten years, the first one of which is spent in the nesting area to grow and mature. By their final year, a Grashobaig usually fades in skin tone, and upon death it is known to dry up completely, leaving only the shell behind. For reproduction, a Grashobaig will lay a cluster of orb-like eggs after breeding with a mate, setting them safely in hollows or holes until they are ready to hatch.
Despite being a wild animal, the Grashobaig is not a hostile creature, only resorting to poisoning its foes when feeling threatened or under attack. Nonetheless, it cannot be tamed or domesticated. Grashobaig are, in fact, very docile and relaxed creatures who sleep for twelve hours a day, and spend the rest slowly sliding along in search of grass and flora to eat.
Territory and Groupings
‘Safety in numbers’ applies to the Grashobaig, for these hulking molluscs are more often than not found in groups of anywhere from three to ten, making their journeys in so-called flocks. These journeys across country are in order to find fresh food, a necessity for the Grashobaig seeing as they’re easy pickings for large packs of predators. However, these journeys tend to take weeks of the Grashobaig’s time to even reach a new pasture as a result of how slowly they move.
- Given the clear and water-like consistency of the poison, it has become a popular weapon for dark dealings in recent years, but one which is extremely difficult to attain due to the poison’s short lifespan.
- A simple trap for the Grashobaig was discovered in 253 A.C., when an Orc managed to temporarily blind the great snail with fire. Proceeding to cut off the eyestalks, it was then an easy task to drive a spear through the snail’s flesh. These tactics are still used today.
- The name Venomtrail is in reference to the poisonous qualities of a Grashobaig’s slime, whereas the name Grashobaig is Orcish for “Big Slime Killer”.