The Kolga - Shadowed Ash
The crimson coloured monkey made its way through the thick vines and foliage of the dense jungle. Its tail swinging back and forth as it made its way carefully across the jungle floor. Being careful as to not trip or fall into one of the hundreds of poisoned flora. Suddenly, it heard a familiar call. It turned, confused at first, as it was the sound of a females mating howl. Curious it made its way towards the potential mate. Then there she was, crouched underneath a tall tree, facing away from him while she continued her howling. Excitedly he approached, responding with his mating call. But when his new mate turned to face him something was dreadfully wrong. It looked like a female of his species but its skin was blackened and sticky looking, and its eyes were a sickly yellow with no pupils. Before he could process the impending danger the Kolga struck, shedding its mimicked form and melting back into its sticky liquid natural form. Like a web made of tar, it fanned out and in an instant, it wrapped around the body of the screaming monkey. The monkey tried to resist but it was already too late. The struggle was brief, and soon the twitching and struggling monkey stopped moving. The Kolga has struggled its prey to death, now it could finally begin to feast, it had earned this meal.
The Kolga, or as it has been nicknamed by wary travellers, Shadowed Ash, from its ability to reduce its prey into a sludge that resembles a wet pile of blackened ash, was accidentally discovered when one fell from a treetop and landed on a local hunter, thinking him its prey. The hunter only narrowly escaped with his life as by chance he had a lit torch nearby and the fire seemed to agitate and scare the creature away. Before it's discovery, the Kolga had only been spoken of in legends and was told as a scary story to stop children from running off into the jungle at night. Though as it turns out the creature was quite real and extremely dangerous. Very little research has been able to be done on the creature, and none have ever been taken captive. They are quite elusive, and if caught they quickly slink away, due to its semi-liquid form, it can squeeze into tight locations and hide, or quickly climb a tree and disappear amongst the canopy of the jungle. The few facts that are known about the creature are that it uses its ability to mimic the forms and sounds of its consumed prey. Using this form to trick other creatures into its lair to surprise them before suffocating and consuming them. It's only other hunting tactic is to lie in wait, clinging to tree branches and trunks, before falling onto their unaware victims. Based on the few encounters with the Kolga that have been recorded, they seem to have an aversion to light and fire especially. It will run from the latter if faced with it. None have ever been seen in the daylight and it is unknown where they hide during these times.
Discovery and Research
Lifecycle and ReproductionThe true lifecycle of these creatures is unknown, but many believe that as long as it nourishes itself every fortnight that it is essentially immortal. Some hunters swear that they have been accosted and even hunted by the same Kolga for decades. Its method of reproduction is also largely a mystery, smaller Kolga has been seen in the wild indicating some form of fledgling stage occurring. Scholars hypothesize that the Kolga do not mate but instead split off from an elder, in a form of self-replication. Some researches suggest that there may only be one host Kolga and that all others are just branchings that have spawned from the main body and its offspring. But these claims have never been witnessed or confirmed. Since none of the Kolga have ever been captured alive, little about its physiology, habits, or reproduction can be confirmed. Scholars seek a living specimen desperately and would pay handsomely for a chance at seeing one in action.
Feeding HabitsThis creature will eat any creature that falls below its grasp or is naive enough to get too close to it. The Kolga will often lie in wait for days on end waiting for the perfect opportunity at ambushing their prey. They only require sustenance every fortnight so they have plenty of time to be patient. A Shadowed Ash that successfully ambushes their pray will suffocate it before devouring it completely. This process can take up to an entire day, as the only thing the Kolga leaves behind is a pile of sludge that resembles wet ash or mud. After it has completed its meal it may copy the form and sounds of its eaten prey for a short while. It uses this tactic to lure in prey of the same species as if a mate, or acts as prey for another predator it intends on ambushing and consuming. When it cannot do this, it will hang from high places and wait for its prey to wander underneath before dropping onto them.
AnatomyShadowed Ash, aka The Kolga, is a black ooze roughly the size of large dog. It is extremely sticky to the touch and can blend in with the dark shadows that the jungle canopy of Mijhail casts on the soil below. It clings to the trees using dozens of stringy strands of its own ooze, waiting for its hapless victims to wander by. After consuming the form of its prey, it can transform into a mimicked version of the creature. While in this form it moves and sounds much like the consumed creature but its skin remains sticky and black, and the eyes of the creature turn a sickly yellow with no pupils. Due to a lack of research, no one knows the mechanism in which it is able to accomplish this.
Geographic LocationFound primarily in the deeper regions of the Jungles of Mijhail, the Kolga prefers to stay hidden in dark places, especially high tree branches and the thick vine canopy that covers much of the inner jungle. Though this creature mostly haunts the southern jungles a number of sightings have been seen elsewhere in the world, having been spotted in several forests and caves continent-wide. Many theorize that the origins of the creature lie in the The Ruined Plateau of Thysduin and that it slithered its way south into the jungles below in search of easier and more plentiful prey.