|Common Nicknames||White Terror, Vit Rädsla|
|Habitat||The North Belt|
The Sibraxas is one of many hazards in the hostile regions of The North Belt. It is a nuisance to both travelers brave enough to traverse the snowy landscape, and to those who live there. Originating in Jorrhildr, they later traveled across the north and adapted to the ever-growing harsh terrain. But to many pretentious Ithanians and Altalar, the creature is merely proof of the savagery of the Asha Race and their lackluster origin. They propagate this opinion by pointing to the Sibraxas’ similarities to the Rakhet Asha, and claiming unknown Magic or simply time allowed this savage animal to adapt into the Asha, all relatively recently in Alorian history as a way to deny the Asha their ancient past. The Sibraxas, however, is ignorant to all of this and traverses the harsh environments it lives with amazing speed and stealth, which has allowed this saber-toothed feline to be one of the most efficient hunters of the northern landmasses.
The Sibraxas has an ancient history back to the time before Jorrhildr was an icy landscape. When the Allorn Empire reached the continent, they found various animals such as the Thylan but also the Sibraxas, a feline animal which dwelled in the mountainous lands of the continent. Over time, the animal sought to flee the Altalar and their poaching, resulting in their jumps over to neighboring Ellador and Cain. The animal bore the magical blast which transformed these lands into icy cold landmasses fairly well, already adapted to the cold due to their existence in mountainous regions. Over time, they also lost their more exotic coat colors of black and brown for white, which allowed them to be better hunters in the white worlds they inhabited. The final land jump came around or during the Cataclysm. Somehow, Sibraxas packs crossed into the North Skags, completing their sweep across all of The North Belt. Ever since then, the Sibraxas has played a role in life across all of these different regions as a predator. Many have left the mountains they originated in for more open tundra-like territory though they do still need a sheltered place to set up their den. But over time the animal has also had a cultural side effect in regions external to those it lived in. When it and its pelts were encountered by Ithanian traders and hunters around 100 AC, the Ithanians seized a theory that repressed the Asha claims of an ancient past. Due to the animal’s similarities with the Rakhet subspecies, some Ithanians began to claim this animal was the origin of the Asha; some beast from the icy and savage north, and not a civilization that had rivaled the power of the Allorn Empire over 2000 years ago. Today, the theory barely holds up given just a bit of basic sense, but, it still occasionally thrown out there as a tool of Ithanian propaganda against their Asha population and those Asha Corsairs who raid them with support from the Asha States.
The Sibraxas is a rather large animal with a high muscle mass. They range between three to five feet tall, five to seven feet long and can weigh between 550 and 650 pounds. They are constructed to be sleek, but powerful. Their heads are narrow, with two large brown, green or blue eyes, a long muzzle with a short-whiskered snout. Their ears are small and close to the head to keep them warm. Their most prominent feature appears here; two prominent and downward curved canines emerge from their mouth, prominent to the point of being sabretoothed like the Great Jungle Cat. A strong neck attaches this head to the body of the animal, which is a lean and muscled hunting machine. Their limbs are muscled, with large paws well made to help one spirit across open terrain or jump. These paws also possess strong, thick claws which are resilient to dislodge or loss. They also have short tails, only a few inches long. Their bodies are covered in a thick, heat-insulating coat of white fur streaked with stripes of grey the older a Sibraxas gets. Only occasionally will a “runt” of a litter possess a cream or dirty-cream color instead, though the slight color difference is not enough for it to be isolated from the other or an ineffective hunter. As a consequence of their thick and luscious furs, hunters have evaluated the Sibraxas to be an animal of high value, often pursuing them for the sake of conversion into warm clothing or prestigious decorations.
Sibraxas possess a strong sexual dimorphism. Males are smaller than females of the species, which often lead the packs, but further features to define gender are obscured by the animal’s thick coat. Despite this difference in size, there is an equal number of females and males spread across their habitat of The North Belt. On occasion, one’s white coat instead appears in a cream color.
Life Span and Development
Sibraxas kittens are born in litters of up to four at a time and do not take long at all to age and grow. For the first two months of their life, the kittens must stay with their mother to breastfeed and develop. They then become adolescents and learn skills from their mother and the wider pack. After two years, the kittens are then fully grown and are officially recognized as adults. At this point, they may choose to leave their pack and either make a new one or join a different one. The Sibraxas very rarely live past the age of 35 years old.
The Sibraxa are the typical example of a wild, territorial species hostile to any who may pose a threat to their lives or the lives of their pack. They are surprisingly intelligent and tactical, using pack tactics, camouflage, and natural adaptations to their habitat to be very effective hunters. They primarily stalk, possibly even chase their prey, before using their powerful limbs to jump at them and bite at key body points or joints. They can grasp the concept of family surprisingly well, with parents able to recognize their children and even grandchildren with certain signs of affection. Females are dominant in Sibraxas packs, with males either serving a subservient role in the hunt or remaining at home altogether to look after children or defend the den.
Territory and Groupings
The Sibraxas is extremely territorial againt other members of their species, and marks the edges of their territory. Any pack or hunting group which crosses will not be treated with kindness. Individuals, on the other hand, will be tolerated but cautiously before everyone warms up to the loner’s presence. Their territory’s boundaries range from thirty to thirty-five square miles, usually based around a cave, rock outcropping, or sheltered area where the Sibraxas in the pack live, sleep, and eat. Packs can range from as little as ten cats up to fifty; these larger groups exist in the more wilder areas of The North Belt untouched by regular hunters or explorers.
- There are many Velheim and Urlan tales of singular men independently fighting off a whole pack of Sibraxas; it is almost guaranteed none of these are true.
- The Urlan of Jorrhildr usually make a contest about of hunting Sibraxas. Whoever kills the most in a camp gets some form of prize or recognition.
- As insane as the Ithanian theories about the Sibraxas is, some have actually argued the opposite in recent years. They suggest the creature was a population of long Rakhet Asha, who devolved on the harsh land of Jorrhildr over two millennia ago. Of course, this theory, like all others involving this creature, has no proof.