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Demi-Slugs are a nomadic sapient gastropod species native to the 1st realm. They are herbivores, eating leaves and soft plant tissue. They live in societies built around the ceremonial and survivalistic foraging of plants and defense from other animals.
After the Supernova of 80MB, a great portion of slugs were shifted into the 1st realm. These new inhabitants were almost immediately hunted by the native avian species, leading to the adaptation of;
- legs akin to the tentacles of octopodes, to aid in evasion,
- greater visual acuity, to make it easier to notice predators,
- and tougher skin, as to withstand pathogens and wounds.
Demi-slugs were small stocky creatures, about 20 cm tall at adulthood and 1< cm tall in infancy. They lack a shell, featuring a textured patch on their backs, and have a pneumostome which they used to breathe at the centre of their chests. They eat using a radula, a tongue-like organ used to scrape up plant matter into the mouth.
They also featured four antennae on their heads, two outward facing tentacles projecting from the sides of their top lip which they used to smell and taste, and two eyes on stalks at the top of the head.
Their eyes had much greater visual definition than their slug ancestors, and developed a mechanism similar to blinking in minikin; they would retract the bulb of their eyes into the stalk, refreshing the organ and reducing the risk of dessication greatly.
They appeared to have six bulky limbs projecting from the sides of the foot, analogous to the tentacles of octopodes. They had two legs, two arms, and two ‘inbetween’ limbs. They also featured a small tail connected to the ‘foot,’ which touched the ground and helped with their semi-bipedal balance. The arms featured four small bumps on their end akin to three fingers and a thumb.
The Demi-slugs grew from herbivorous leaf-eating slugs, widening their diet into the consumption of;
- soft branches,
- soft roots,
- and fruit.
Their new deit helped them to reach the point they achieved, bringing them more nutrients than they would have needed previously, affording them greater energy to spend toward developing and maintaining mutations and their intricacies.
All of the evolutionary adaptations worked in conjunction with Alucinara to quickly augment and improve the physiologies of their basal slug ancestors as well as their minds; they quickly developed an upright stance and the ability to coordinate and communicate.
This led to the formation of many nomadic communities in the 1st realm, all concerned with serving deities and survival, with little technological advancement due to the constant pressure from predators in the hot plains with no places to hide.
Nomadic demi-slug communities tended to live in temporary complexes built undergound into the soil and built above it with clay and mud that would be gathered, stored in the mouth, and deposited.
Their communities often had their nursery rooms deep in the ground, their pantries in hard-to-open rooms just below the surface, and their lounging areas above the ground where it could be easy to leave for the sacred gathering of food.
Demi-slug clothing tended to be very basal, as the species’ lack of precise fingers made weaving nigh-impossible. Rather, they would tan leaves and glue them together to wear them like a poncho, reserving the toughest leaves for the chest as to protect the pseumostome.
It was often considered that foraging, gathering, and defense were all methods of worship endowed to the demi-slugs as rules of their existence. They were incredibly devout creatures, always acting to serve their deities.
Their spiritual leaders tended to consume alucinarium in powder or paste form, treating the elevated level of consciousness achieved as the ‘spiritual plane’ where one could interface with deities or passed loved ones. It was treated as a taboo for a common demi-slug to do so without permission, as it could lead to phantasmarrhoea or incorrect interpretation.
Spiritual leaders of typically every species tended to be blind, with light purple-tinted eyes. This was a result of continued exposure to alucinarium and its effects on physiology.