A hatchling grotesque relies on the company of its herd to keep it out of trouble, making it a particular challenge for a single magi to raise. As well as being too curious for their own sakes, hatchling grotesques must learn to prepare for the dawn or risk injuring themselves when they freeze into stone. They can recover from chips and regrow small broken pieces over time, if they are lightly damaged in their stone forms, but larger breaks can threaten their ability to change back into living creatures. When light touches their skin, grotesques freeze where they are, which can lead to quite a few awkward stone sculptures lying around inconvenient places during the day. Although the frozen hatchlings are easily moved, many magi have ended up with stubbed toes before learning to watch where they step when getting out of bed in the morning.
Grotesques are a rare sight in the lands around the Keep, now restricted only to a population in the Foenaran Napier Forest. Although gentle creatures by nature, grotesques turn into hardened stone statues if they burn in fire, and will petrify any creature that gazes into the statues' eyes. Because of this, the stone heads of grotesques were once prized by dark wizards as defenses for their castles, and there are even legends of warriors who bore grotesque heads on their shields. Grotesques naturally turn to stone whenever bright light hits their skin, making them vulnerable to light magic. If a grotesque is caught flying when the sun appears over the horizon, it may fall to the ground and shatter. These creatures are relatively brittle when in their stone state, and surprising light, making them easy to transport. Unless they are burned, however, a grotesque does not have a petrifying gaze. The magi believe that this is a curse on the person who slayed the grotesque, and great care must be taken when handling grotesque artifacts from the mage wars.
Sprite art: Tekla | Description: PKGriffin