Species: Piasa Bird
Birthday: Thursday, November 17, 2011
Perhaps it is the centuries of hiding away from other creatures that has caused piasa birds to be so shy. Although younger birds may rely more heavily upon their magi, once they grow up, these birds prefer solitude or the company of their own kind. Some theorize that the more generations are raised around humans, the more friendly these avians will become. Such a transformation has not occurred so far, and adult piasa birds still prefer to build their nests far away from other creatures. They only companions whose company they actively seek out if that of the dragons, who they seem to worship. If a dragon requires any help at all, a piasa bird will offer their services immediately, whatever the task. Though not the friendliest of creatures, piasa birds have also gone out of their way to be helpful to their newfound human companions. Their huge wingspans would allow them to fly vast distances, though their constant need for water makes travel impossible. Instead, they make brief trips to nearby villages, carrying large quantities of supplies back, or doing what they can to help around the castle. Their strength is very useful when it comes to erecting new buildings, and there are plenty of projects to keep them busy around the ever expanding castle. Even young piasa birds seem to love building things, though their true delight is making their nests once they are fully grown. Piasa bird hatchlings wait impatiently for years, until they are strong enough to build their own homes. Then they will spend still more years gathering the materials they require, until at last they can begin building their nests. All adult piasa birds teach their young to disguise their homes carefully, so that no one who passes by can be alerted to their presence. Piasa nests are fantastic creations. Made from rocks, they are softened by grasses and leaves that the piasa birds are always on the lookout for. Their inability to travel far severely limits what supplies they can collect, making it quite impressive that they have managed to exist for so long. Their perseverence is a testament to both their strength and intelligence.
Piasa is an almost forgotten word that translates to 'thirsty'. These birds certainly fit that description – they must drink so often that they are forced to live by water. No one is quite sure where their incredible thirst comes from, though some old wives believe it to be a curse. The tale goes that an incredibly vain bird longed to be more beautiful, and one day saw a dragon pass by, flying high up in the sky. The bird was so taken with the dragon's beauty that the selfish avian called upon dark magic to steal the dragon's life and drain it of its magic. The transmogrification was only halfway complete when a nearby water god saw the act and halted the spell. But it was too late; the piasa bird was no longer a normal bird, but neither was it a full dragon. To punish the bird for its cruel actions, the god filled the piasa with such thirst that it could never rest or be at peace. The only liquid that quenches their driving need for water is blood, though that too is only a temporary solution. Because the piasa birds cannot stray far from water, their ability to find prey is severely limited, and they are not able to prey upon many. They would have continued their life of exile if not for the day when one of their hiding spots was accidentally discovered. An ancient mural was painted on a bluff, apparently to warn travelers away from the bloodthirsty birds. The mural showed several piasa birds, their sharp talons covered in blood, their beaks open with murderous intent. Despite their apparent cruelty, the birds were also lovely to behold, their gold and silver feathers catching the sun's rays. A passing magi happened to spot the beautiful depiction, and approaching it, discovered a nearby cave of piasa birds. Fortunately, centuries had somewhat calmed their bloodthirsty natures, and the magi left with both his life and an egg.