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Length: 0.10 m Width: 0.23 m
Height: 0.05 m Weight: 0.34 kg
Speed: 3.54 km/h
The six-legged Sand Stinger actually limits much of its mobility to its four rearmost legs. The two forward legs are dual-jointed and tipped with thick needles that deliver a powerful protease. Aside from being horrifically painful, the venom also begins the digestive process of the yet-living victim. Quantity of delivery and size of the victim determine time to death. A pair of smaller fangs can be found on the lower front of the Sand Stinger.
For all its potential toxicity, Sand Stingers are typically the hunted. The poison is denatured and rendered harmless in mere minutes in a kettle of boiling water and the flesh trapped beneath its exoskeleton is considered a delicacy in many regions. Healers in most of the tribes have learned to use the Celiurian herb to detoxify the venom. Timing is important, however, for if too much time passes, the disfigurement rendered by the protease becomes permanent.
If one’s domicile floods in a monsoon, it is best to assume Sand Stingers (or their eggs) may be present. It is for this reason the People have made their primary domiciles in elevated mountainsides or stone. Races living in the flatlands and valleys are far more likely to have seasonal infestations. A baby Sand Stinger “bite” does very little damage, typically resulting in a medium-sized, tender blister. While unsightly, such wounds typically recover without any medicinal aid. A systematic application of the venom can also imbue a high level of immunity, though toxicity levels vary wildly by the individual.
From a culinary perspective, the Sand Stinger has a remarkably sweet flesh which becomes fibrous upon exposure to high heat. Where larger animals cannot be had, Sand stingers are the preferred protein source. They are our favorite by virtue of their relatively benign level of lethality compared to the alternatives, and pair well with fatty condiments heated to a melt. Gravy!
Habitat: Desert. Periodically coalesce at oases. Versatile and robust survivor.
Anatomical Features: Hexaped with forward, enlarged structures tipped with pronounced stinging organs. Open circulatory system with a bluish-green blood (possibly copper based). Fangs located at the bottom of the frontal face are hollow and capable of delivering the same venom as from the stingers.
Feeding Habits: Active predator of small animals. Post monsoon, they are known to mass in such great numbers, large prey normally inaccessible to the Sand Stinger are stripped clean of their flesh. Flooding of arid regions will also spread the creatures to places one would not typically find them.