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Scythirs

Scythirs, the predatory leaves.

 

Description

  From the Scythir's seed grows individual saber-like leaf without need for any roots. This leaf grows up to 2m and reaches maturity soon after growing to a length of 1m. Mature leaves start forming seeds at their tip.
The seeds and grass seem to be inactive and inert while alone. However, certain sentience starts to develop when a group of at least 3 leaves is formed.
Group of at least 3 leaves attracts and traps the Atocitera's magical Flow attuned to gravity. Which results in the formation of crystalized gravity as cores of such clusters.
This cluster of leaves with a crystal at the core is what is called Scythir.
  To move, the cores of Scythir hover above the ground while raising the leaves belonging to it. An exchange of leaves between clusters was commonly noted.
When the crystal at the center starts spinning, it generates fast flows turning the razor-sharp leaves into a deadly blade vortex.
Scythirs are then using this deadly blade vortex to assault their prey. Their prey being anything that disrupts the soil of the field the Scythirs consider their territory.
  The territory of Scythirs is always a field of grass, among which the Scythir leaves hide.
While hidden, the Scythir is barely visible, as its leaves are lying on the ground and obscured by more common grasses.
Their hiding can be given out by their prey's spilled blood on the grasses.
An occasional splatter of blood on an otherwise beautiful grass field is a warning of the potential presence of Scythirs.   A young Scythir usually posses younger leaves and much smaller crystal at its core, while adult ones have numerous mature leaves and crystals reaching up the size of a human head. There is a documented relationship between the size of the crystal and both growth and the number of leaves belonging to the individual Scythirs.
     

Dangers and behavior

  One Scythir is easily manageable by a skilled raider or two, but it is never just one.
In the grasses of their field, the scythirs are scattered in all sorts of circular patterns. Creating traps for various creatures.
While inert, these silent leaf predators lie on the ground, masked in the green of the field and easily missed.
The inert Scythirs slowly grow their crystals depending on available Flow. The crystal then becomes a lure for various other monstrosities, who subconsciously seek the disruptions in the Flow. When a possible prey walks into the field, its weight cause disruption in the soil around Scythir. The core of the Scythir then rises up from the ground along with its leaves at a speed proportional to the disruption.
This causes smaller prey to not be startled and immediately flee, while larger prey and a potential threat provoke a much faster reaction.
After rising from the ground, the Scythir begins spinning its leaves around the core and approaches its target.
  The young ones are a mere nuisance usually hiding behind the adult ones, threatening only with small but deep cuts. While the adult ones can cut through meat with ease. And due to their numerous leaves, they leave behind only a pile of meat and blood in a matter of seconds.
The Scythirs continue slashing and drawing blood until there is no blood to draw. When there is no blood to draw, the young Scythirs cut as deep as possible and stay inside the prey absorbing any blood still within the dead prey.
The Scythirs then return to their original position, recreating the trap.   In case the target of Scythir attack passes through the formation, it still gets slashed by some of the mature leaves, which draw blood and release the seeds.
As long as the seeds do not stick in the wound, they create more leaves to form new clusters in the original field.
However if at least 3 seeds get stuck in the wound or enter the blood circulatory system of the prey, there is a chance of a Scythir forming inside the victim. While in the circulatory system the seeds do not grow even when provided with an abundance of blood. They absorb all nutrients they need to alter the gravity Flow and form a crystal core somewhere inside the victim. Such crystal grows somewhere in the clueless victim until it disrupts some vital function, causing the victim's death.
At that moment all seeds in the victim start to sprout and grow.
     

Spreading

  Since the moment a Scythir leaf grows to a size of 1m it starts creating seeds on the tip of the leaf.
The seeds need blood to start growing, and the tip of the leaf gets into contact with blood whenever it comes into contact with prey.
After the leaf draws blood from the victim, it releases any seed that got into contact with the blood.
As this happens during the spinning of Scythir attack, the seeds get scattered around the field.   The seeds then either land close together, in which case they form a new young scythir with fresh crystal cores, or the seed grows individual leaf which then gets picked up by passing Scythir.   Sometimes the seeds get released inside a wound of a prey. When that happens the seeds can enter the bloodstream of the victim.
Individual seed or pair of seeds stuck in wound or bloodstream pose no threat and soon die.
But if 3 or more seeds get stuck in the wound or bloodstream, they find a spot in the body where they stuck themselves and continue getting nutrition from the blood.
Such seeds do not sprout leaves but generate a strong enough presence to attract and affect the gravity Flow slowly growing a crystal core somewhere inside the victim's body.
After this crystal grows for some time, it inevitably disrupts some vital organs, causing death. The seeds then start sprouting leaves and using the crystal in the body, they soon form a Scythir whose initiate growth is limited only by the size of the prey killed this way. Such Scythir is without its home field, and roam until it arrives at a field with green grass. Where it either joins the already present Scythirs or creates its own colony.    

Use for raiders

  The crystal at the core of Scythir is crystalized magical Flow attuned to gravity.
Such crystals prove to be useful when carrying all sorts of resources back up to Atocites. Especially considering that weight is one of the key factors in determining the value of resources.
  While the young Scythirs do not pose much threat, they have only tiny crystals of very little value or use. The adult ones on the other hand possess up to head-sized crystals, which can be used to turn several kilograms of resources to almost weightless.   One group tried to find some use for the leaves of Scythirs, but they are impractical at cutting anything that is not flesh.
Of note is that once the leaves got to the proximity of Scythir's crystal, the leaves became active again. With the crystal safely stashed, the danger was not recognized until it was too late. For this reason, the crystals are the only thing worth attention to when it comes to Scythirs.  

Strategy

  To defeat a Scythir, it is required to understand their pack behavior as the pattern in which they hide and wait for prey creates many traps.
Walking into said traps commonly result in painful escape if not immediate death.
  Approaching every grass field with caution and expecting Scythir's presence is one way to stay alive.
Throwing something heavy, for example, a stone, into the field could trigger a reaction from Scythirs.
When the Scythirs react and rise, it might be possible to snatch the crystal cores before the leaves mobilize and Scythirs begin spinning.   If such maneuver is impossible and/or Scythir is already on its march. Destroying the leaves is the only way to get to the crystal. However, due to the speed of the leaves spinning around the core, destroying the leaves is more a matter of luck than skill. A leaf is considered destroyed when the stem connecting the seed and leaf is cut. Such leaf will not react to the nearby crystals. Other ways to destroy the leaves consist of more dramatic approaches, such as burning the entire Scythir down.   In summary, confrontation with Scythirs poses great risks to unprepared Raiders and is therefore not recommended. In case of spotting a Scythir field while not being adequately prepared, the correct process is to finish the raid and return to Scythir field with proper equipment.  

Discovery

If we would not messed up the two previous encounters, we would not need to rush back then. Everyone hates rushing through rain in pitchblack night. We knew we had little time. And in all that rush we lost crucial bit of our caution.
The path we selected was deemed clear by our scout. Could not blame them. The field looked empty and it was a shortcut we desperately needed.
  But man. When I looked at the field my whole body skipped a beat! You know it. The feling of dread, the imminent danger. Something about that field was not right.
As I paused for a moment the blokes had the guts to call me scared. They were already rushing and looking forward getting back home, up there to safety.
It took me few seconds to get myself back together. And when I started running to catch on them. The feeling paralyzed me once again. It was not normal, my body reacted in such way only when in face of death. But that was empty field!
Alas, empty it was not.
  When I looked at my friends dozen steps ahead, I saw it. The tiny stones raising and howering above ground. And then something raising with them.
At least the blokes saw it too as they stopped to evaluate the situation. What a mistake, they should have ran. As they stood back to back, weapons drawn, the stones and whatever it was around them started spinning.
  As these things approached my friends they tried to fight. But it seemed like they waved at empty air!
I was paralyzed with the sight. These cursed things moved right through my friends. The screams will haunt me forever.
When the stones started dropping back to ground, I instinctively ran through. I needed to pass that cursed field to get home in time. As I was passing what remained of my friends, I immediately regretted even looking. Not only that thing cut and sliced them to pieces almost in blink of an eye. In the moment I looked they started spinning again. Cost me my left arm back there.
Nurle Skoritzel - The chronicler
       

Details card


Element: Grass/Gravity
Material: Grass
Region: All green fields.
Kind of damage: Slashing
Danger: High
Usage: Minimal
Target priority: Rarely worth the risk.
       

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Comments

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26 Mar, 2021 10:14

This is an interesting concept. I like how you made the paragraphs rather short, this makes it easier to read. I think it's already pretty well done for a first draft but there are still a few odd sentences that could be rewritten a bit.   Other than that I would add perhaps a tooltip for what crystalized gravity flow is because the article itself doesn't really explain. Breaking up the text a bit with quotes or other elements would also be nice.   As for uses I am wondering have the people ever used the plant around citywalls as an extra defence? I think that if it was planted there it would be pretty handy to deter people attack the walls.   In all nicely done already!

Feel free to check out My Ship entry if you want to see what I am up to!
2 Apr, 2021 23:29

Thanks for your words :) I added link to article explaining the Flow as a whole. And I used the excerpt of that article to serve as tool tip for this one. I hope its informative enough.   Regarding sentences that might need rewriting... Can you please point me at some? I feel like I fixed what I noticed in 2 read throughs.   And I already started thinking about adding one more paragraph. Containing quote of document from "Chronicle of first encounters"   Oh and lastly. These were not for defense as you suggested, because on Atocitera, people live on flying mountain-islands and periodically raid the extremely dangerous ground for resources.

7 Apr, 2021 14:23

Ah yes I see that you added it now. Thanks for the additional explanation! ^^ As for the sentences for example : 'Scythirs are detecting presence' would be better as 'Scythirs detect a nearby presence'   'masked in the green' needs to be 'are masked in the green'. The last part of that sentence can then be 'and can easily be missed'   'Even the prey decide to run' should be 'Even if the prey decides to run'   'Or in worse scenario, carried its seeds inside the wound.' I would make that sentece 'In a worse scenario the prey can even carry the seeds inside its wound.'   'mention it was ' should be 'mention that it was '   'attack its prey,' should be 'attacks its prey,'   'stuck in the wound, being spread' should be 'stuck in the wound and spread'   'grow crystalized flow ' should be 'grows a crystalized flow'   I hope I did not give too much corrections but I provide it now since you specifically asked about it :)

Feel free to check out My Ship entry if you want to see what I am up to!
9 Apr, 2021 20:23

The first draft was created without the help of Grammarly or any concern given for grammar. The "final" version was done with that in mind and should not contain these same mistakes :)   Thanks for pointing them out though. it showed me that I needed the much sooner.

9 Apr, 2021 20:41

No problem :) Having others read your article always helps with finding stuff. No article is without errors in first versions :p

Feel free to check out My Ship entry if you want to see what I am up to!
7 Apr, 2021 15:00

I like predatory plants! And I like that these rely on a diet of blood. Very interesting.   I also like the idea of adding in a quote or prose section on the first encounter. I think it would also be great to really specify somewhere in the article that these blades lie in wait below the floating islands.   You mention that they grow in whole fields, but that the "...silent leaf predators lie on the ground...." Does this mean they grow in fields of other grasses? Or that part of the scythir includes inert grasses while part includes these sharp blades? {and if the field looks like any other field of grasses, I would suggest putting in a pic, either in your sidebar or somewhere in your article, or even header of that, just to add some visual interest. see https://pixabay.com/images/search/field%20of%20grass/. Do they grow in any type of grass?   Is there anything limiting their growth? Access to blood, I would assume, would be one. But is there anything else? Is it just that they must grow where other grasses grow? That they cannot handle certain temperatures or rocky terrain? etc. Does magic or flow play any role in their abundance? How large are these fields, on average?   If they do grow in fields of other grasses, are they relying on those to lure prey? Or do animals enter the fields to nibble on the scythirs thinking that it is grass?   Under Dangers and Behaviors you have written "Or in worse scenario, carried its seeds inside the wound." Why is the a worse scenario? Simply because it spreads more fields of scythirs? Or does something gruesome happen to the unwitting prey? (like sprouting within them)   It seems these require blood in order to germinate. That is a very neat requirement. Is there any preference for prey type, or any blood will do? Is it only required to begin the growth process? or required throughout?

- Hello from Valayo! And Happy Summer Camp!
9 Apr, 2021 20:17

After reading recent comments a lot of information was added. As long with a diary page regarding the first encounter :) Thanks for all the questions, they definitely helped me perceive the direction in which to evolve the article.

Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
7 Apr, 2021 22:02

Great plant! I like the concept of cutting grass that can move its blades superfast to cut people XD   I've written a few notes to help you edit the article a bit:   I would change a bit the order you introduce stuff in the first section. Starting with a description of the plant (including the bits you have in your second paragraph, but also mentioning that there is a crystal in the centre). Then second paragraph the trapping of the energy. Third paragraph the carnivorous buts, starting with what it eats, then how it detects preys, how it eats, and reproduction only at the end.   To give an example " Seeds of this dangerous grass form on the tips of its leaves, hoping to get in contact with blood of the prey." We still don't know what are the prey and even if it was implied you didn't say clearly that it uses its blade to hurt them. Also, what does it eats? Blood? Or do the corpse of the prey decompose and then the plan take up the nutrients?   " And due to numerous leaves they leave behind" this sentence feels awkward with "leaves" and "leave" close to each other.   " While inert, these silent leaf predators lie on the ground, masked in the green of the field and easily missed." I think that's a description we need earlier near the start of the article.   " Scythirs remain inert until prey walk into their trap, at which point it gets immediately surrounded." Are the plants mobile or are they rooted somewhere? Are they sentient? Normal carnivorous plants don't really decide when to attack or not, they react to stimuli. Here it seems that yours are sentient. That's something you should mention.   Also what is the trap? Is it just that they wait until someone walked to the middle of a group of plants to attack?   What's the advantage of getting in the blood of a prey? Does it use the blood as a nutrient to grow and grow inside the body of the prey? Or is it just transported on the clothes and get spread around like that?

9 Apr, 2021 20:16

Thanks! Based on your suggestion I did my best to rewrite it in a better order along with many new things which sprouted from yours and hcravens suggestions.

Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
9 Apr, 2021 20:26

Glad it was helpful :D   I'm now cringing at all the spelling mistakes in my comment... :(

Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
9 Apr, 2021 20:32

I just reread the article and it reads a lot more smoothly now, and I love the bits you've added! Sentient murderous grass! XD

Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
9 Apr, 2021 20:40

and very nice narration at the end!   Just noticed two typos "At least blokes saw it too as they stopped" is missing a "the" and you have a "stod" just after instead of "stood"

13 Apr, 2021 18:53

"And that's why we had to start the plains fire that ended up burning down the entire city, your honor."   "Case dismissed. Get this man a medal."

Too low they build who build beneath the stars - Edward Young
14 Apr, 2021 09:42

Ah yes. These leafy bois sure can be dangerous. Now I sure need to create something even more dangerous and attracted to fire to justify why there are not massive burning fields whenever someone spot a Scythir.