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Nalrigs

The desert seemed so silent. Then, thunder crashed, yet there were no clouds. A caravan was coming.

Imagine a desert. Not a small, rocky land brimming with cacti, but a vast, featureless landscape, where turbulent seas of sand stretch far into the distance, the dunes, boundless and bare, threatening to envelop an unwary traveller with their colossal, unstoppable mass.

Now imagine thunder. A short, low reverberation through the dunes. But thunder? In this deadly, relentless heat? No, not thunder.

Now you are scrambling to the summit of the shifting sands, the barrier between you and the hazy horizon. The grains of sand flow beneath your dusty soles, disturbed by the distant rumbles, as you claw your way to the top of the great dune.

Now, standing, you gaze over the barren wastes, and see, not storm clouds, but a caravan. And what a caravan it is! Enormous creatures, a dozen or more, plod in solemn procession over the sea of sands. Their skin is grey and covered in wrinkles and folds that stretch and heave every time those four huge feet crash to the ground, kicking up clouds of misty dust. The stretched necks and tails rise and fall with the steady rhythm of the thunderous steps.

Imagine what they are topped with: buildings of great, sweeping rooftops the colour of the desert, strapped to dark timbers, strapped to the beasts themselves. Under those walking rooftops, are, in some cases, small homes, with plain, open air interiors, and under others are crates stocked with all manner of exotic produce: Almajan silks and rugs, spices of Malran, and gold from Taraluz. Scurrying around the caravan are the human shepherds of the giants, clad in black scarves that flutter in the desert wind, which brings no relief from the terrible heat.

  Nalrigs are enormous creatures, somewhat resembling the sauropod dinosaurs of our world. They are naturally adapted to hot climates, such as their native rainforests, and are therefore used by the people of Almaja to transport their goods to the North across the desert in great caravans.

Basic Information

Dietary Needs and Habits

The Nalrig is a herbivore, and feeds on large vegetation, mostly from trees. They will move feeding ground a lot, to find new food after exhausting the food supply of a region.
Scientific Name
Nilracun
Lifespan
120 years
Conservation Status
Nalrigs are uncommon in the wild, only existing in the deepest jungles or deserts. However, the people of Almaja rear the creatures as beasts of burden.
Average Height
15 - 19 metres
Average Length
40 - 45 metres

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Cover image: Caravan by Julien Gauthier

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