Man Eater's Madness

"If a human eats the flesh of a gnome, an elf, or a dwarf, he is still a cannibal because lesser mortals are similar enough to each other. We dragons are spiritually and literally above all other mortals. A dragon is only a cannibal is she eats the flesh of another dragon. All other flesh is acceptable fare and only cowardly or weak dragons say otherwise."   -Mierva the Dark, dragon
 
"Ripping a chunk out of an enemy human with your teeth is one thing. Swallowing it another.   It may or may not be an act of cannibalism for dragon to eat the flesh of a human or other lesser mortal, but I'm not going to get into semantics. It is still a deeply amoral act whether you label it as "cannibalism" or not."   -Fremiss the Vibrant, dragon
 
"A human that becomes addicted to consuming mortal flesh contracts will physically transform into an ogres. An elf that develops a taste for mortal flesh wil physically transform into a skopen, and so on and so forth with all the the Second Age and the Third Age.   We dragons hailed from ancestors who lived the First Age. Creatures of the First Age do not physically mutate after consuming mortal flesh but this does not mean we are immune to Cannibal Sickness, far from it. It is simply that the symptoms are more subtle and insidious. Draconic Cannibal Sickness, better known as 'Man Eater's Madness' is the manifeation of this sickness."   Numaness the Mystic, dragon

Transmission & Vectors

"Just as ogres, skopen, and jormangers pass their taint on to their offspring, dragons with cannibal sickness pass their condition on to their offspring. Most of the most voracious and infamous man eating dragons of recorded history came from a long line of man eaters."   Numaness the Mystic, dragon

Symptoms

"Addiction has destroyed the lives of many humans and sadly, dragons, for all our wisdom and might, are not immune to the dangers of addiction either.   Most dragons can have a favorite food, but are not defined by the food they eat. I like to eat horse flesh, but not I'm not addicted to it, I'll eat whatever is convenient. Dragons that eat the flesh of mortals often quickly become obsessed with eating mortal flesh and will go out of their way to seek out more mortal flesh.   Many human scholars and more than a few dragons believe that dragons are completely immune to Cannibal Sickness, but there does seem to be a form of connected mental illness.   Dragons with a taste for mortal flesh are nearly always very cruel and vindictive. There is what humans call a 'chicken or the egg" problem. Does eating mortal flesh makea dragon cruel or do dragons who are already cruel seek to each mortal flesh.   ('Chicken or the egg' is a bad metaphor though since the egg came first because dragons laid eggs before chickens walked the face of Scarterra, but that is neither here nor there).   Much like lesser predators, dragons that hunt in the wild will usually focus on the weak and infirm among herds of prey. Going back to me eating horseflesh, I'm perfectly content to eat elderly nags. It's more economical than eating strong stallions and mares.   Dragons that develop a taste for manflesh often have a strong preference for eating the best and most promising mortals. Beautiful maidens, athletic young men, young royalty, and wise sages. This is sick and twisted in more ways than one. These dragons take delight in stunting the collective growth of humanity.   Worse still, some will physically or psychologically torture their meals before hand. It is also common for man eating dragons to eat their special meals in front of onlookers in order to spread fear and despair."   -Kovenoth the Builder, dragon

Treatment

"It is possible to cure and redeem an ogre or an ollum with magic, determination and luck. It only works if the cannibal wants to be redeemed.   I've seen it happen with my own eyes...once. I've seen many failed rehabilitation attempts. Gnomes are especially enthusiastic about trying to redeem cannibals and for every cannibal that is successfully redeemed, a great many gnomes and humans are eaten by a cannibal who was lying about wanting to be redeemed.   Whether good or evil, we dragons are smooth talkers. If I meet a man-eating dragon that claims to want to reform her evil ways, I will not give her the benefit of the doubt. It's just not worth the risk. I say kill them all and let the Nine worry about their souls can be salvaged.   Maybe, maybe, the offspring of a man-eating dragon can be redeemed if they were adopted and raised by a dragon of great integrity, but even then I think it might be safer just to purge the tainted hatchlings. If you try to save a hatchling with latent man-eating tendencies and you fail, that dragon can grow up to eat hundreds or even thousands of innocent humans in the future.   -Fremiss the Vibrant, dragon

Prevention

"It does not matter what your race is, if you never eat mortal flesh, you will never contract Cannibal Sickness.   We dragons are not immune to Cannibal Sickness, but we are resistant to it. If you only eat manflesh on special occasions, your odds of becoming addicted to mortal flesh are extremely remote."   -Jemmurth the Swamp King, dragon.

History

"According to legend. dragons that develops a taste for the flesh of other dragons, will physically mutate in extreme ways, even going as far as growing additional limbs, wings, or a second head. In the the First Age, mutant dragons like this were put down by their own kind with extreme prejudice, so this was rare, though the number of dragon cannibal mutants increased drastically during the First Unmaking. A lot of the dragon activity in the early the Second Age was putting these degenerates down which might have given the ancient elves some breathing room as the surviving dragons were largely occupied with internal affairs so to speak.   As far as I know, there have never been any acts of true dragon-on-dragon cannibalism during the Third Age. But just because dragons have stopped eating dragons doesn't mean others have tasted dragon flesh. Many have tried, few have succeeded.   As for the faux-cannibalism of dragons eating lesser mortals, written and oral records suggest that our ancient forebears of the First Age did not consider it taboo to eat the flesh of non-dragon mortals though many claimed not to like the taste. At the time, the most plentiful mortal flesh available was the flesh of giants and their flesh tastes awful...or so I've been told.   Dragons eating mortal flesh never stopped in the Second Age and the the Third Age. It was only in the current age where some dragons tried to making eating the flesh of any mortal a taboo.   Taboo or not, from a practical standpoint, nothing galvanizes would-be dragon hunters than man-eating dragons so it's good to avoid eating manflesh if only to avoid making unnecessary enemies.   [quote]"It does not matter what your race is, if you never eat mortal flesh, you will never contract Cannibal Sickness.   We dragons are not immune to Cannibal Sickness, but we are resistant to it. If you only eat manflesh on special occasions, your odds of becoming addicted to it is extremely remote."   -Jemmurth the Swamp King, dragon.

Role Reversal

 
"Hypothetically a slain dragon could feed a whole village with dragon meat for weeks. This makes one ask. If a human or other lesser mortal eats dragon flesh, will he or she contract Cannibal Sickness?   Yes and no.   Most humans who have tried eating dragon meat claim that we do not taste very good, so most humans quit after one or two bites. Also, eating dragon flesh makes a human ill. Not deathly ill, not permenantly ill, but ill enough. Also, dragons will hunt down and murder any who eats dragon flesh and boasts of it. Very few humans or any other mortals are daring enough to try to make a meal of a dragon even if they are supposedly professional dragon slayers.   Assuming a human gets through all the barriers, a human can become an ogre from eating dragon flesh alone though they have to eat a lot of it. Most humans who decide to eat dragon flesh were already ogres before they ate dragon flesh. Ogres and other mutant cannibals have stronger constitutions than normal mortals so they can stomach draconic flesh easier. Some skin changer witches view dragon meat as the ultimate prize.   It is bad enough for a mortal to slay a dragon other than in self defense, but any mortal who eats dragon flesh deserves a painful death."   -Jemmurth the Swamp King, dragon.
Type
Mental
Origin
Mutated
Cycle
Chronic, Acquired & Congenital
Rarity
Rare
Affected Species

What about Half-dragons?

 
"A half-dragon/half human that develops a taste for mortal flesh essentialy becomes an ogre that vaguely looks like a dragon. This has happened more often than we dragons care to admit. Never to any of my offspring of course.   Half dragon/half elves are much less common but I am assuming that if one of these turned to cannibalism the end result would be a typical skopen that just happens to have draconic features.   Half-dragons have enhanced physical prowess relative to normal humans. Ogres have enhanced physical prowess relative to normal humans. Draconic ogres are naturally powerful and terrifying threats. Fortunately, while an ogre might be able to hide his condition and strike from the shadows, it is effectively impossible for a draconic ogre to operate in secrecy. They don't last very long. They may be powerful but they cannot fight off a whole human army...or me."   -Fremiss the Vibrant, dragon

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