Grave Rot Condition in Shireon | World Anvil

Grave Rot

You should never make shortcuts when raising zombies. Every part of the process is important to the final result. For example, if you do too little effort on the preservation part of the spell your zombies might catch Grave Rot, and then you might catch Grave Rot Pneumonia. And we really don't need another epidemic on campus this decade.
— Renestrae Irevos
Teaching new students about Necromantic magic

Decaying corpses need to be buried or otherwise disposed of for many reasons. As a mold that grows on decaying flesh, Grave Rot is one of the more important reasons. Not only does it give off a musty stench of decay as it breaks down former skin and muscle mass, it produces poisonous spores that infect other corpses. These spores are even dangerous for living beings since they cause an illness called Grave Rot Pneumonia if inhaled.


On a zombie the first symptoms are visual - a layer of greenish yellow mold starts growing on the surface. Chances are that you don't see it before you smell it, though. Shortly after its initial growth the mold will start decaying dead flesh as nourishment. The chemical reactions in this process will release a foul-smelling gas, powerful enough to be sensed even in small concentrations.

The zombie can function as normal for quite some time after infection. However, after a while the mold will have eaten enough muscle mass to make the muscles stop working.


The only way to prevent a zombie from catching Grave Rot is to make sure it has enough preservation magic in effect at all times. This includes recasting the preservation spells at regular intervals.


The worst thing about Grave Rot is that it spreads by creating airborne spores. If one zombie gets infected with Grave Rot it will spread. And it isn't only decaying corpses that will get infected - if enough spores touch meat intended for food they might spread Grave Rot to the meat, making it unfit for consumption.



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