The Abominations

Caution: Spoilers

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Created at the Emperor’s command, and by the confluence of Enkhaelen’s dalurvykhe and the Imperial Palace’s weaving, the so-called abominations are former humans — now altered to carry out certain roles in the Imperial Armies and beyond.  They are called ‘specialists’ or ‘converts’ in polite company, and ‘the blessed’ by some followers of the Imperial Light.

Most abominations can send the Call — a method of chemical communication made possible by specialized sensory glands — and all can receive it, with varying levels of clarity and comprehension.  Some have access to other pheromone- or hormone-modifications, permitting them to control others or access an adrenaline compound colloquially called  ‘the ichor of last resort’.

Aenkelagi

Also called a bodythief, this abomination is perhaps the most transformed of all the types.  Its consciousness has been transferred entirely to a black band or bracer, which it typically wears around the forearm of a stolen body.  The anatomy of the bracer consists of limited surface senses (no sight, hearing via vibration), gripping ‘claws’ on the underside, ‘threads’ that interface with the nervous system and mend injuries, and a ‘marrow-spike’ used to embed itself into a large bone so as to control the host’s immune system.  Spiritual as well as physical, the aenkelagi traps and digests the soul of its victim in order to gain its memories; these eventually fade, but in the short-term can influence or disrupt the aenkelagi’s own personality.  The name translates to ‘skin-thief’.

Ahergriin

Horrific and dangerous, this abomination-type is almost never seen in civilized Imperial territories.  No two ahergriin look the same, having been cobbled together from the parts of failed converts; some Imperials refer to them as the ‘hairballs of the Palace’.  They require the constant attention of their handlers, who use the Call to control them.  The name translates to ‘boar-eater’ and is short for ahergriinagagi.

Lagalaina

This type of abomination is female-specific, with a male counterpart in the senvraka.  Physical changes include hollow retractable spines beneath the nails and tongue and behind the teeth, complex feet with two taloned toes and a rear claw, mottled skin, compound eyes, and vents on the back that interface with the lungs.  The lagalaina’s skin has been altered to secrete a topical anaesthetic at will, and the hollow spines and lung vents can be used to distribute a mind-controlling toxin.  An altered dose of this ‘honey’ can be used to inoculate a subject against lagalaina control; a ‘clean’ dose causes euphoria and obedience but runs the risk of thralling the subject and wiping out their free will permanently.  Most lagalaina operate under illusions to appear human.  The name translates to ‘intoxicating woman’.

Rovagi

Particularly inhuman, this type of abomination likes to congregate with its own kind to form ‘nests’ and raise new rovagi born from seeded hosts.  Tall and angular, it is covered in carapace with several extra joints per limb, and has sacrificed the two middle digits of each hand in return for long organic blades that fold out from elbow to palm.   Its eyes are compound and enlarged, nose nonexistent, mouth and throat substantially altered; it even has wings, fine and diaphanous, but can’t take flight without springing into the air first.  When it has been recently exposed to strong radiance, it will glow softly.  Used outside of civilization for spying and assassination.  The name translates to ‘harvester’.

Ruengriin

The most common abomination-type, ruengriin can be found in two of the three Imperial Armies and the White Flame Order.  Like the lagalaina, they require illusions to pass for human, but are not nearly as visibly altered.  They may have strange-looking eyes and overlarge mouths with sharp, serrated teeth, but most retain their native coloring (with a touch of pallor) and their original body conformation.  The real changes are inside, giving them monstrous strength and fortitude at the price of an insensitivity to pain.  The name translates to ‘man-eater’ and is short for ruengriinagagi.

Sarisigi en-Dalur

Uncontrollable even by a honey- or venom-based handler, the sarisigi is a decommissioned type, capable of taking the shape of anything its clay-like ‘body’ has engulfed but also prone to violent and erratic behavior — including attacking its own kind.  Like the bodythief, it traps and digests the souls of its mortal victims, but the memories it gains do not fade and can boil up at any time.  All known sarisigi went insane after their first few victims, with some devolving into an animalistic state and others clinging to the last victim’s personality as their own.  Though most were destroyed, some escaped and at least two are still in the Empire’s employ.  The name translates to ‘mirror of body’.

Senvraka

The male counterpart of the lagalaina, this controller operates in a narrower capacity.  It shares the mottled skin, altered feet and retractable spines, but does not have the lung-vents or the anaesthetic and thus cannot exert its control en masse or in secret.  It can signal those it has already envenomated via a controller-specific form of the Call, but not ensnare more victims with it, and so is best used either on individual victims or among groups of near-thralls — often human soldiers.  The name translates to ‘best man’ and is short for senvrakaenka.

Thiolgriin

Usually found in packs with a ruengriin or senvraka as a handler, the thiolgriin is a step above the patchwork ahergriin cast-offs but still not capable of managing itself.  Often called a ‘hound’, it requires an illusion before it can be used in civilized lands, because it is clearly a former-human that has been deformed into a quadrupedal shape and stripped of all intellect and memory.  Grey-skinned and hairless, the thiolgrin runs on its knuckles with its clawed fingers curved up against its palms; some are large enough that smaller abominations will ride them, but it is not comfortable.  The name translates to ‘wolf-eater’ and is short for thiolgriinagagi.

White Flame Armor

Not a product of Enkhaelen’s dalurvykhe process, the White Flame armor is notable in this context because it has slowly begun to replace Palace conversion as the Empire’s go-to soldier-maker.  It has none of the flaws of conversion (which include a 90% failure rate without Enkhaelen’s own hands-on preparations) and can be used on anyone, even those the conversion process automatically rejects (teens and younger, pregnant women, skinchangers).  The White Flame armor integrates with its wearer’s biological systems, allowing them to see, hear and ‘breathe’ through it, and resists all damage — translating it instead into energy that powers the armor’s substance.  The armor can also fill in for missing senses, limbs or organs, effectively giving sight back to the blind and mobility to the crippled.

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