Leechspawn

Blood Sorcerers

All blood sorcerers serve the Leech, whether knowingly or unknowingly, for they must feed it with their own vitality in order to harness its blasphemous divine power for their own ends, and their magic is one of the prime vectors of its Touch. Some are merely audacious or hubristic occultists seeking power at any price, while others are true believers, venerating the Leech and perpetuating its cult. Many blood sorcerers become Thirsters, though some are able to stave off the growing Craving.

Husks

Those whom the Leech has drained dry have their souls siphoned into the Leech’s gullet along with their blood and lingering divine spark, leaving only a dead, empty shell. However, once Kissed by the Leech’s dark power, not even the dead cease hungering, and such empty corpses do not long remain idle. Reanimated by the Leech’s power and propelled by dark desires, Husks seek out the hot blood of the living on which to gorge themselves. They can never be satisfied, however, for that which they consume only goes on to feed their wretched master. Some Husks are little more than animals, while others retain a measure of their faculties, and are capable of greater cunning and subtlety.

Thirsters

Those who suffer the Leech’s Kiss do not always perish. Many of the Leech-Kissed begin to consume the blood of others in turn, and some of these are able to endure in this way for some time. Those who consume blood are in turn consumed by their own growing craving for it, and many of these come to lose themselves to the Leech’s will. Once succumbed to the Thirst, many seek out the Leech itself, partaking of its ichor and becoming Demons or commanding armies of husks.

Demons

The thick, tainted Divine Ichor of the Leech leaks perpetually from the misbegotten god’s broken flesh, staining the landscape where the Leech fell from the Heavens. The dank earth and fetid waterways of the Bloodmire are the result, and where those waters spill out into the sea, the Crimson Shoals can be found. The warping influence of the Leech’s own blood twists animal and plant alike into monsters, and there are even those among mankind who would partake of it. Living monstrosities transformed by the blood of the Leech, Demons are bizarre and dangerous.

Ezen Ayangakhol and the Tsusantuurai

Once a god of the Steppe, Ezen Ayangakhol grew furious at the constant depredations of the Leech’s servants, and led his followers into the Bloodmire to root out their source. His expedition was futile, and in the end even the Horse Lord of War and Travel fell victim to the Leech’s hunger. Now the Husk of a god, Ezen Ayangakhol leads the twisted remnants of his people to war, a great and terrible horde of Husks and tainted Demons.

The empty husks of the mortal servants of Ezen Ayangakhol, the Tsusantuurai, still ride under the banner of their fallen lord, but their true master is now the Leech, and they serve only sate its dark thirst.


Chikatsu-Uma

The damned steeds of those who serve the Leech, the chikatsu-uma resemble a cross between a horse and a lamprey. Their body is broadly equine, but their flesh is rubbery and grey or black, and often coated in a clear, thin slime. From their shoulders, instead of a horse's neck and head, a thick, tubular, worm-like appendage emerges, the end opening into a round, sucking mouth full of multiple rows of barbed, grinding teeth. The legs of the chikatsu-uma are sometimes hoofed, sometimes tipped with insectile pincers, and their tail is often ragged or knotted and waterlogged. Though they are eyeless, the chikatsu-uma's senses are nevertheless keen, particularly their sense of smell, and they are not notably inconvenienced.

Chikatsu-uma are demons, natural creatures twisted and warped by exposure to the Leech's foul blood. Many were once the horses herded by the Tsusantuurai before their ill-fated push into the Bloodmire, while others are horses, deer, or donkeys that have wandered into the clutches of the leech's servants.

Chikatsu-uma are predatory, feeding on anything they can hunt down, and they are as at home in the waters of the Bloodmire as on dry land. For this reason they are often called 'marsh-horses' among the Akaishi.

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