Summer nights at the Keep are warm, the breeze soft and gently perfumed with the scent of honeysuckle and night blooming jasmine. Most nights find you and several of your friends climbing one of the highest towers, bringing carpets and pillows to rest upon as you eagerly watch the skies for what many assume to be falling stars. A gasp from your neighbor draws your attention to the east and you watch in delight as ouranian koi swim across the sky, bright gold and cool silver trails of stardust burning in their wake as they return to the stream. A year ago your favorite koi nudged your hand in goodbye before joining others of its species as they set out to explore the stars. Ouranian koi tend to travel for decades each trip so it is unlikely your koi has returned, but the excited voices drifting from the direction of the stream tell you that tonight many other magi have reunited with old friends.
The largest and longest lived of all koi, ouranian koi are also among the most unusual. They easily attain lengths of over fifteen feet and are the preferred battle mounts of the merfolk who will often ride ouranian koi in attacks against pirates and others they deem invaders. Ouranian koi are also favorites with magi who study the stars, for these koi will spend decades and sometimes even centuries travelling through space to visit distant worlds before returning to the stream. The patterns on their scales are said to be depictions of the planets they have visited, and indeed koi who have traveled together often carry near identical patterns which has led to many scrolls and books in the library filled with intricate drawings and essays detailing which stars the koi are believed to have traveled to. No one is quite certain why ouranian koi are so driven to make these journeys but many believe that if life exists elsewhere, these koi are vital to its beginnings.
Sprite art: Borealum | Description: ShaiNeko