As a viridis crab ages, it grows, and must find a new shell. Not only do these companions require a different home, but they also undergo a very interesting transformation. Like wild crabs, they molt, a process where they shed their outer skin in order to grow larger. During this time viridis crabs need special attention from their magi. A dark glass tank is prepared for them, and the crab remains there for nearly a week, resting and waiting for its new exterior to harden. Then they will leave in search of a larger shell. These little companions have very interesting shells, as one can plainly see. Their shells are strawberries, magically imbued to never decay but to remain forever ripe. Though strawberries are nothing like shells, they are referred to as such because they take the place of normal shells. Strawberry shells offer these magical crabs no protection, but they need none. All creatures, companions or not, make sure never to eat a viridis crab, as these crabs have powers that benefit all. One can always find a crab or two in the kitchen gardens, simultaneously helping plants to grow and eating. An adult viridis crab will hardly eat a coin's size of food in a week, and hatchlings even less. Their favorite foods are banana and strawberries, which are found in abundance in the kitchens. When they reach adulthood, viridis crabs occasionally breed. They do not usually do so when tame, as they are fickle creatures with complicated rituals. If they do, the little egg will be placed in a flower and carefully watched over. These eggs are very difficult to catch from the stream, as they are so small. A watchful magi may be successful in catching one, but most magi have to remain by the stream for hours.
Though their size may make them seem insignificant, viridis crabs are valuable companions. They have a most unique power over food, allowing it to ripen quickly and remain edible for a long time. This magic is very valuable to villages with food shortages, or to help magi on a long journeys. Viridis crabs are so small that most magi bring them on trips, as they are easy creatures to carry. They are most content when sleeping in a pocket, usually beside a rock that is spelled to be warm. These crabs require hot temperatures, and during the winter remain inside, where the snow cannot reach them. When warm weather rolls around once more, flocks of viridis crabs scuttle outside, to bathe in the warm sun and begin growing new plants. It is interesting to note that as these crabs grow, they require bigger shells. They will hunt endlessly for the right shape and fit, and move quickly into the new strawberry, discarding the old. The new 'shell' will quickly be made permanently full of life, and the viridis crab will continue on its way. A fussy crab may repeat these steps many times before becoming satisfied with their new home. These companions will switch shells once or twice a year, as they grow ever larger. They never stop growing, and can reach up to three fists in size. If their shell is too small, the crab will grow more slowly and become irritable. This happens if there are no strawberries available, but at The Keep there are always strawberries, even in the depths of winter.
Sprite art: BettyxMe | Description: Damien