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Bendir Lizard

The Bendir Lizard is a Bardic Lizard, with many subspecies, which can produce a sort of music naturally with their body. They are companions to many Bards, though their musical qualities were only recently appreciated after being considered annoying for a large period of history.  

Bendir Anatomy

Bendir Lizards are many and varied, but there are common traits shared by all, and some other traits that can be observed from subspecies to subspecies.   The most common traits in Bendir Lizards are, of course, the reptilian features. Scales, tails, and a skull capable of more flexibility than that of most other living creatures. All Bendir Lizards, however, also contain some form of musical gift, said to be from the Goddess of Music herself, Ninatta.  

Musical Gifts

Bendir Lizards each have a special musical gift among them, and there are even some who hold multiple. Some examples of gifts among the Bendir are:
Bendir Lizards by genuinetrickster
  • Drumback- Being able to use their backs like a drum, using their tail as a drumstick to play it. These can be drums like a snare, bass, or timpani to cymbals, gongs, or triangles.
  • Xyloback- Those with more ridged backs are able to use the ridges like a drumback, but the sound is much closer to that of a xylophone rather than the other percussive instruments of a Drumback.
  • Bonetroms- A strange thing that occurs in the throats of some Bendir Lizards where they scream, making a noise similar to that of a trombone.
  • Screamoid- Instead of making a trombone noise, there are instead some Bendir that seem to scream out noises. It is even said they can be trained to mimic words if they are taught them.
  • Saxoboys- Like Bonetroms and Screamoids, Saxoboys speak out music, though the sound emitted by Saxoboy Bendir is like that of a woodwind instrument, with some variations in clarinets, saxophones, or flutes.
  • Keyfeet- These Bendir make noises similar to that of a piano when they walk, as their toes have nerves in them that produce a noise that sounds like it.
  • Stringers- On the bellies of these kinds of Bendir is a string, which can be played if the Bendir stands on its hind legs or lays on its back. This string, depending on the frequency with which the Bendir decides to speak or sing it, emits a different kind of noise. These can sound like anything from cellos, basses, violins, or harps to ukeleles, thunder guitars, or shamisens.
Glendira Glingrin by Jarhed

Bardic Discovery

For much of the time Bendir were known of, they were considered pests, annoying and loud creatures that were annoying, with no real redeeming qualities behind them.   However, a Bard in Lebalos, a Secci Gnomes named Glendira Glingrin, found a Bendir in her home in the year -420, on the fourth day of the Month of Defeat.   Glingrin found that the noises it emitted were more than just annoying... they were musical. If trained, they could play as if they were an instrument or, even, a backup vocalist. So, with two months until the big festival, Glingrin trained a Bendir named Wizz. Wizz played as a drum in what was once a one-woman band of Glingrin.   Soon enough, Bendir caught on and became a common Bard companion thanks to Glendira Glingrin, who made a band of what would eventually become over 100 Bendir Lizards in an almost symphonic orchestra, to show that they were not annoying, but talented musicians like the people who they lived around.

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These are not the only subspecies, but they are the most prominent and well known of the Bendir. Some of these traits are shared, with some Bendir Lizards able to do more than one musical act, while others are simply tied to a solo talent.  


Bendir did not evolve for the purposes of making music, though. They adapted to survive, and in the Uncharted Desert where Bendir come from, silence is a key for many. It is the natural state for the creatures there.   Therefore, to be startled away by a loud musical noise would indicate, in some way, something dangerous. For many, it would symbolize that of man. But in the desert, it symbolizes the Bendir, who scare off predators with their music, disrupting the peaceful silence of the desert to keep themselves safe.  

Bardic Power

Of course, with the domestication of the Bendir, and their musical talent, it was only inevitable that they learn some Bardic Power if channeled through them by a Bard. This requires the Bard to learn some basic Beastmastery power, but after they do so, it is said the Bendir can adapt and utilize the techniques on their own.   These techniques can include things like simply voice projection or magic through music, or it can include high level techniques including Geass. A common technique to teach Bendir is healing spells, so a Bard has a small pocket healer. Healing magic, after all, is said to have a pleasurable feel, and if a musician can replicate that even to healthy audience members, it will draw a crowd.

Bard's Guide to Bendir

Some have questioned the efficiency of Bendir evolution, but Lizardfolk biologist Tront once wrote a book teaching basic practices and normalizing the Bendir for Bards and people all over Totania, called "A Bard's Guide to Bendir.". Here is a passage on their evolution:
"For those who wonder what a Bendir's purpose is, it is worth posing to oneself a simple scenario: imagine walking through an empty city street in the quiet night. The greys of citylife are blending together when you see a brightly colored creature staring at you, contrasting the life you know. Then, the being opens its maw, releasing a gutteral trombone noise, beating its back to produce a drum noise. Would you approach it? Or would you run, as fast as you could, as far as you could? Exactly."
A Bard's Guide to Bendir



The scales of some Bendir are known to have special properties. There are some whose scales are extremely shiny, while others are said to have chameleon-like power to blend into their surroundings. There are others, still, that can simply change their color at will, often preferring a natural state of a rainbow, which wards off predators in the sandy desert where such colors are irregular and, therefore, dangerous.  


Most Bendir tails either have club-like shapes or are solid and filled with thick bones and covered in tough scales to allow them to beat their drumbacks or xylobacks.  

Reproduction and Growth

Bendir reproduce by laying eggs, with the normal amount in their clutch of eggs being 30. Many Bendir owners often sell the eggs, with the eggs themselves being a delicacy in Tamd, the Draconian Village of Alchemists, as they have a rivalry with the Bard Village Ealla. Bendir eggs, then, are a sign of Tamdian domination, as they enjoy eating the Bards pets.   The Bendir, for the most part, however produce near asexually, as they use a process called Parthenogenesis. What this allows them to do is make young with unfertilized eggs, best for the Bendir who live in the desert, where it may be difficult for a female to find a mate.   Bendir grow to be, mostly, male due to Parthenogenesis. However, they are not obligate (meaning incapable of sexual reproduction), but instead are facultative (meaning they can switch between asexual and sexual means of reproduction).  
Many considered the Bendir's Parthenogenesis to be a mockery of the typical view of Bards, as Bards are considered to be quite sexual in nature, and for their lifelong companions to be naturally semi-asexual is to some Bards a slap in the face.
"To believe something can go its life without the touch of another was, at first, a strange thing for Bardic Culture. However, in adopting the Bendir, Bards found themselves more likely to accept those true Bards who were asexual like the Bendir. So don't be a prick about it. People like what they like, and for some people including Bendir, that's no one. Get over it."
A Bard's Guide to Bendir

From Birth to Death

Bendir grow at a seemingly normal pace for most lizards, being one fairly unremarkable part of them. However, they are known to do something interesting in both their first and final moments.   When a Bendir hatches from its egg, it lets out a noise. Often this noise indicates whether it is a Screamoid or Bonetrom, though in other cases it will play its Drumback or let out some other indication of its talent. This is called the "Artistic Statement" where a Bendir lets the world know what it will bring into it.   Many Bards have taken this practice, when they first take up the Bardic Arts they will compose a short piece that is often quite derivative or bland. However, it lets the world know their intentions as an artist.   It is not only in birth, but so too in death, that Bendir let out an important piece of music. Death is an equally artistic playground.
Bendir let out what is called a Swan Song in their final moments: a culmination of life and the music they have made in said life. Many consider a Bendir's Swan Song to be one of the saddest things one could possibly hear, and many Bards will try to mimic a Bendir's Swan Song of their old companions to remember them by and, perhaps, bring emotion to an audience with the final work of an old friend.  


Bendir Lizards were initially found in the Uncharted Desert, living with the silence of the dunes. Their diet here consists of smaller creatures like scorpions,tiny lizards, or bugs. However, after their discovery and eventual domestication, their natural habitats have grown, as Bendir are taken in, then laying large amounts of eggs and moving.   Therefore, Bendir now live not only in the Uncharted Desert, but also in the lakefront climate of Ealla. Here, they are more naturally predators, and are considered a fairly invasive species that has endangered many of the more natural lake residents.   The Bendir are, still, challenged by the sea monster in the lake, which will eat any Bendir it finds. After all, loud noises may be a weapon in the desert, but in the Village of Bards, loud noises are the norm, and there is nothing the Bendir can do to scare predators.

Cover image: by TheDigitalArtist


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