Snail Maids


From the waist up, snail-maids have the appearance of a humanoid women with attractive features, while the lower body is that of an enormous snail, complete with shell. Snail-maids tend to have tawny to pinkish skin tones with a sheath of thick, textured, darkened skin in place of plaits of hair. Their lower body is usually slightly darker, with the frill of the foot being slightly more colorful, often with hints of red or yellow. Their shells are usually yellow to brown, sometimes with dark mottling.

Lacking bone structure, they are able to change the size and morphology of their body from that of a true snail to their preferred womanly aspect. Snail-maids have some chromatic and textural control of their soft-tissue similar to octopi. The slit containing their genitals and love-dart are housed in a location corresponding to genitals on the human torso, which is also where the 'foot' of their snail body begins. The foot's frill, when they 'stand upright' resembles the ruffled front on a dress, or grossly exaggerated female genitalia.


The snail-maid is a highly evolved form of hermaphroditic gastropod, living principally in temperate rain forests. Snail-maids have human-like intellect and life-spans, living alone in simple shelters built from natural materials. They are principally herbivorous gatherers, maintaining territory for growing and collecting their preferred foods, including leaves, bark, nuts and berries. They have a particular weakness for calcium rich stones, needed for strong shells. Territories are marked with pheromones and carved or painted markings on trees and stones. They make and use simple tools, traps, and fire. They may have access to shamanic or natural magics.

Young snail-maids or those that have lost their territory may wander searching for a suitable new home. In such situations, battles over a territory may occur, which are similar, if not identical to mating duels, as the typical result of such a duel is the impregnation of the loser. Snail-maids that inter-breed produce only giant snails of limited intellect and no ability to assume a humanoid shape. Those clutches are laid in damp soil while wandering in search of a new home. No sensible snail-maid wants to be burdened with such dim creatures in her territory.

The notorious 'love dart'.
Such shameful breeding gives a snail-maid a strong biological drive to produce 'true' snail-maid spawn, making dispossessed snail-maids particularly dangerous to humanoid males:

 If, before settling into a new territory, a snail-maid discovers a suitable humanoid male mate and incubator, they will stalk them, possibly setting an ambush or luring them away from others and deep into the woods using their comely appearance and intoxicating pheromones. Once safely alone, they beguile them into their arms, kissing them deeply, overwhelming their senses with the chemicals in their skin and saliva. The snail-maid then copulates with their drugged victim at length to fertilize her eggs*, which are then injected into the incoherent man's pelvic cavity using her love-dart.

Victims normally awake disoriented in an isolated, serene woodland locale; their clothing in disarray, tenderness in the loins, and a lingering recollection of a wonderful encounter with a beautiful woman. Men so affected normally become obsessed with finding the woman, wandering the forest desperately as they experience chemical withdrawal symptoms, while the tenderness in their abdomen increases. After several weeks of aimless wandering, they collapse from exhaustion and expire, allowing the maturing clutch of snail-maids to hatch, consuming the man's body as they emerge and begin to forage for more food. Once they have grown sufficiently, the snail-maid young migrate in search of their own ideal territory.

10.5.2013 Update

Snail-maids travel no faster than a typical human's walking speed, and can maintain that speed at length. They are able to ascend sheer or inverted surfaces with modest effort. Snail-maids are not susceptible to salts.

Snail-maids often have traps around the perimeter of their territory, and hide or disguise their home to avoid detection. They will use their natural camouflage and mobility to remain hidden while observing intruders. If forced to attack, they prefer ranged combat, and are often adept with small bows or atlatls. If they deem intruders to be no threat, snail-maids may communicate with intruders. They are able to communicate with other snail-maids, woodland creatures, and speak one or more of the languages of their humanoid 'father'.

* To be clear, the humanoid incubator is not a biological father, perse. Their seminal contribution is critical to the process, but the snail-maid actually self-fertilizes her eggs, using the humanoid contribution to modify her own seminal fluids appropriately.


Mystic Hot Plate


A volcanic stone slab shaped and sized to accommodate one or more cooking pots. The simplest are squares or circles about one foot across and several inches thick, ranging up to about three feet across and six inches thick. Other shapes and sizes are possible but rare. The upper surface of the stone is engraved with meticulous channels forming labyrinthine patterns of symbols and line work, inlaid with metal. At some point along the perimeter of the glyphs and lines is a small circular depression designed to accommodate a power stone. 


The hot plate is activated by placing a charged power stone in the receptacle. The power flows out and traces through the pattern heating the stone slab to a temperature suitable for heating or cooking (like an electric hot plate or cup warmer). The temperature is determined on each slab according to the symbols and density of line work. The active cook time is determined by the potency of the power stone used.

These plates are uncommon, and typically made to be used in environments where fire is impractical or dangerous. They were undoubtedly first made eons ago by Dwarves to use for cooking in the deep warrens of their mines and caverns where both fuel and oxygen are rare enough to warrant such a device. These devices have become popular gets for well heeled crews of sailing vessels of sea or sky, adventurers, and anybody with resources and a taste for such luxuries.


These items are typically produced by stone shapers of considerable savantry who meticulously create the patterns and inlay it with the proper alloys while stitching subtle elemental anima into the metals to properly conduct the energies of the power stone.
The power stones used must be properly attuned to the plate or it will not activate at all, rarely shattering either or both the stone and plate.

The charging of power stones is another matter entirely.