One of the more fierce looking companions at The Keep, ankylocrocs are large predators from the bayous and river deltas. They never wander far from the coast of the Jungles of Raza. Most of their days are spent in the water, remaining perfectly still for hours on end. Their armored backs can look much like small islands, especially when covered with grasses and mud. This camoflage tricks numerous bayou birds that try to use them as convenient landing spots. If prey comes near, ankylocrocs will snap at it with powerful jaws. If they catch their meal, the ankylocroc will pull it under the murky water and devour it. On land, ankylocrocs are not very fast, moving in a manner that could be described as waddling. Still, anyone traveling to the jungle knows not to attract the attention of an ankylocroc. These creatures are tenacious; if a chosen victim escapes, ankylocrocs have been known to follow their prey for days until they can bring it down. Attempting to climb a tree or find terrain hard for the ankylocroc to move on is futile. Ankylocrocs have an unique power that isn’t quite understood by Magi yet. It is impossible for one of these creatures to lose its footing on even on the most slippery of surfaces, and they cannot be pushed over. The only exception to this skill is when ankylocrocs fight among themselves. Battles between two of these creatures are settled by them trying to throw each other down. Magi suspect this to be a kind of natural earth magic, and magi interested in such things usually have one of these companions. A common theory is that ankylocrocs developed this skill because it aids them in traversing the swampy grounds of their home.
This egg has several bony spikes protruding from it, and its shell is extremely hard.
From strange spiked eggs hatch creatures that look somewhat like crocodiles, except that their backs are quite different. These hatchlings have the strangest looking backs, covered with hard scaly armor and bony spikes. These spikes are soft at first, but in a few weeks are very sharp. Though these little ones often seem sluggish, they won't hesitate stalk prey for many hours. Ankylocroc hatchlings are very stubborn and determined once they have set themselves a task. When first born, these companions aren't much larger than a cat, and even allows their magi to pick it up and carry it now and again. If the little one doesn't want to moved, though, it is impossible to lift up. No matter how hard one tries, its feet will not leave the ground. These hatchlings love water and often find the nearest pool or pond to lie in. If some small animal passes, a ankylocroc hatchling will snap at it, honing its hunting skills.
Young ankylocrocs are born very small, but wtihin a few short months are fully grown. An adult ankylocroc stands as high as one's shoulder, with impressively large spikes. During the warm months, these companions like to wallow on the shallow banks of the Stream or Lake Lakira. Other creatures tend to keep their distance fom ankylocrocs, as they do not possess the sweetest temperaments. During the colder months, ankylocrocs prefer to stay out of the water and find a sunny spot to bask in. It will happily cross the frozen parts of the Stream if necessary, and many are amazed at seeing it walk on the ice as if it was solid ground. If the weather ever turns too nasty, ankylocroc hatchlings are brought inside to weather out the storm. Adult ankylocrocs refuse to ever enter the castle, but are content with magically heated rocks. They always seem to know when a boulder has just had a spell cast on it. It can be startling to see a pile of snow suddenly errupt and a fully grown ankylocroc trundle off in the direction of a warm rock. Though plenty of these areas are created, adult ankylocrocs are territorial creatures. If an ankylocroc comes near anothers chosen resting place, it will half rise and make a low growling sound, trying to scare the approaching creature away. If that doesn’t help, the two will engage in a shoving match, pushing against each other with the large bone spikes lining their sides. They're not bothered by any other creatures, though, and it won’t open its eyes even if a careless hatchling runs against its side.
- Released: January 9th, 2012
- Artist: DarrkestDrow/Munin