Haiu: Annual Spore Bloom
The annual Haiu has hit Felth this month, drenching the skies in weeping hues of spores too thick to breathe. Haiu is celebrated as swathes of excitable Residents flock outdoors to catch and drink the spore tainted rains, a free hallucinogenic 'Haiu High'. Large meshed fabric archeries protect busy streets and livestock fields while air-purifiers work overtime to keep indoor areas 'safe mask free breathing zones' and fauna throughout exhibit all sorts of unusual behaviors as a result of spore highs and poisoning. Be careful while you're tripping out there folks!
They float gracelessly through the atmosphere, dragging strips of ancient leathery flesh below their billowing bulk. Barely visible from the ground, they remain where they are for days, months, and years, blackened specks of incorruptible flesh sowing the world below in endless sporocytes. They are the Gilded Ornigury, a unique subspecies of the Gilded Corpse. Like their brethren, they exist to propagate their spores through the storage and distribution of information, but do so in an environment uninhabitable by any other.
Unlike the terrestrial-bound Gilded Corpses, the Gilded Ornigury were bred and hybridized with other species of fungus to produce a sort of low-orbit satellite that could trade information through the air as the Gilded Corpses transmit along the ground. They exhibit a similar flight ability to arial puffballs, keeping a sphere of lighter than air gas within a massive, leathery bubble of airtight flesh.
This waxen skin is not immune to attacks by insect and other arial species, and much like the ground bound species of Gilded Corpse, the dirigible version has hard, leathery flesh that is both bitter and poison. Some even go so far as growing spore-vomiting nematocysts that blast attackers with streams of toxic spore cultures or rotten bile.
The Gilded Ornigury has a monopoly on its weight, with most species only infecting the upper parts of the species around the head area. The gas bubble will grow and eventually burst from the body, lifting it away from the ground and leaving the remaining, unpreserved tissue to dangle below, both as a method of keeping predators away from the upper portions of the body, and to eventually allow the lower portion to rot and fall away, allowing the Gilded Ornigury to finally lift off into the sky.
Gilded Ornigury often resemble a torso with a massive bubble erupting from it’s chest or shoulder area, kept in place by fungal flesh as the head dangles or fuses into the various cresting and gilding the other species exhibit. As the remaining non-neural tissue is only used to keep the dirigible afloat or produce more spore cultures, the remaining tissue may be entirely absent, leaving just the head and spinal column protruding from the bottom of a vast ball of tough, bloated flesh.
The entire creation of the Gilded Ornigury stems from the ever-increasing need for faster and faster methods of communication. The Gilded Corpse networks can already transfer data across vast distances, but are highly limited by the rate at which their mycelium can grow. Instead, the Gilded Ornigury can transfer data by ejecting mass volumes of spore cultures across various network bands, each fertile sporocyst containing hundreds of gigs of data waiting to be decrypted by a ground-dwelling Gilded.
In turn, Gilded Corpses have also been developed to produce and release their own mass spore cultures, which can be intercepted and transported by the hovering Gilded Orniguries above. This altogether creates a complex network of information, as Ornigury intercept and decrypt each other’s data, transfer mass volumes of atmospheric and transferred data to the ground, and vice versa.
The only true limit to their data speed is the movement of the Ornigury and the spores themselves, but the network is as strong as its ancient bodies. There have been rumors of a new tech replacing the spore transference protocol, once which would allow for instantaneous communication from air to ground. Tiem will only tell if this augments the Ornigury, or replaces them entirely with a new, unimaginable biosphere.
Diet & Lifespan:
Gilded Ornigury have an incredibly long lifespan thanks to the area of Felth they occupy. At such a high altitude, the only rot that will ever set into the bodies they occupy is their own, and predators are limited beyond a few sky squid and high altitude insect species. The only real problems comes from storms and other unpredictable elements, which is where the Ornigury come rely on their living partners.
Most modern Ornigury are built into a sort of chassis constructed from insect resins and wax that help preserve their flesh and protect them during both take off and landing. With their own natural defenses, this ensures that the only real concern the Ornigury need to occupy themselves with is accessing the correct connection sites (done via reading spore packet headers), avoiding high danger storm zones, and returning to the ground for the occasional repair and refueling.
Ornigury do need biomass to produce their information carrying spores, and can quickly run out depending on how much ground they cover. Most models can contract simple spiracles in their gas bag to descend slowly to the ground, avoiding decompression and being picked up by whatever tribe is servicing them. There, they can have more tissue grafted onto their frames, receive additional reinforcement, and most importantly be injected with a fresh refueling of biological slurry. This culture of protein and lipids will be slowly broken down and used t o both keep the Ornigury in the air, but also to produce their steady schedule of spore packets. Some newer models even make use of symbiotic, chloroplast carrying bacteria, turning a steady diet of sunlight into another year or two of flight time.
Ornigury can last for centuries if kept intact, with some of the oldest models subsisting entirely on what little atmospheric bacteria get stuck in their mucus laden undercarriage. Reports of low atmosphere shippers tell of sighting Ornigury bearing no translatable tribe markings hovering far higher than any other. Covered in frozen vapor, it is impossible to tell how long they have been up there, or what memories of the long dead they contain.
Grandpa is a computer balloon and you can say hi to him every couple months when he comes back down for his nutrient drip.
Post by possmonaut on Mar 25, 2019 12:50:26 GMT 9.5
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I WANT TO THANK MYSELF FOR BEING SO CUTE, AND MY CATS FOR BEING SO ADORABLE. GOOD JOB US.