The Screaming Mists
In the Land of Teeth there is a vast marshland in the very heart of the continent from which it is said all rivers flow. This steaming quagmire is immensely humid in the center of what is already a hot rainforest which creates a thick mist that covers the region almost year-round. This region is known as the Screaming Mists in part for the skree birds that make a sound shockingly similar to the sound of a dying human’s last cry, but also because of the high chance that screaming sound you just heard may actually have been a fellow mortal’s dying wail. The Screaming Mists is widely acknowledged as the single most deadly location in all the Churning World. While the Weirdwood Forests might be covered in thorns that can piece a human’s skull and other regions in the Land of Teeth might be dominated by huge arachnid-like creatures that carry people off in the dead of night the Screaming Mists is home to some of the largest fresh water dwelling predators in the Churning World alongside some of the most deadly venomous snakes, lizards, and insects as well. The thick canopy above makes direct light scarce even on the brightest days which plays toward the fact that nearly every predator in the rivers and trees are ambush predators. Here are but a few of the most prominent ones. Hydras: Six headed serpents of nearly 40 feet in total length. They are truly massive creatures and often hide in trees dangling their many heads from the branches and waiting for something to pass beneath them. Once they do they drop down, bite and grip their victim, then start slamming them around furiously until their prey stops moving. Greater Salamanders: Reminiscent of the salamanders from the human continent, greater salamanders have six legs and grow up to a remarkable 20 feet in length. They use their short, sticky legs to climb up the sides of ships so they can sneak on board and assault the sleeping crew. Greater salamanders are both venomous and poisonous. Their bite has a neutralizing agent that numbs pain almost instantly and puts the victim in a shockingly relaxed state while direct contact to their skin can cause a paralytic effect that slows motor functions in the exposed area for hours. Much of the time the victim is found the morning after partially eaten having never cried out to alert their comrades. Whispering Death: Not all that can kill you are giant, though compared to the insects found in the human continent these certainly are. Huge, flying insects that can grow up to half a foot in total wingspan hover around the murky swamps with wings that produce only the fainest sound, almost like that of a low whisper. Due to the constant mist few ever see the dart-like proboscis coming until it had already pierced through their flesh and started to drain them of their vital fluids. Splinterbacks: The apex predator of the Screaming Mists. Splinterbacks are massive, 60ft long crocodilian creatures with six limbs and an armor-plated back covered in thorny, jagged protrusions that begin near the head and go down the back to the tip of the tail that itself has smaller spikes along the sides, giving its tail a deadly striking power. Splinterbacks are massive and between their size, the incredible speed that they can achieve in the water, and their aggressive nature they are easily equipped with the frightening ability to splinter the keels of smaller ships and boats, causing the entire vessel to either capsize or sink into the murky depths. Their fury is so well known that any who wish to sail through those waters are expected to drop meat into the water to placate the local wildlife, for if they choose to hunt your ship you may well find yourself a the bottom of the river. All these and more inhabit the Screaming Mists, but by far the most deadly animal one can find are the indigenous sapient peoples who have managed to make it their home. The pirates of the Screaming Mists.