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crooks

Crooks

Crooks, similarly “Crookeds”, are an intelligent species currently living on Skire (Landmass). Brought to life as Wormlings, they are seen as thieves of bodies - aspects of which can be seen in their forms, majorly with their humanoid inner mouth due to their Hell Licker origins as human body stealers. It is believed that Crooks formed because of their innate desire to protect Skire (Landmass) by any means necessary, even twisting the CCCat original blueprint and detaching from the Hivemind to achieve this goal. This change from the original CCCat blueprint is what granted them their name, as they were considered “Crooked”.

Crooks strayed from the CCCat mentality, striving to find purpose and understanding in who they were. Their physical forms were constructed to carry them through life on their quests to find who they are, whereas CCCats would find themselves early on in their Wormling phase.

Crooks had been kept away under space and time by Faceless Guide, a CCCat rumored to possess the most powerful space magic known to Skireans. The time in which Crooks were trapped in this Alter World is marked as The Banishment, and during the 200 years that it lasted no Crook was allowed to form and live on Skire (Landmass). This decision was founded by the Skirean Gods Everything and Nothing, who had grown fearful of Crooks and their ability to break free of the CCCat blueprint, and that as CCCat Gods, would have no control over this new species.

It was not until the year 5730 when two Crooks named Myir and Halik were able to break free of The Banishment, and Crooks finally returned to Skire (Landmass).

Anatomy

Crooks are created via Wormlings, in a similar fashion to their sister species, CCCats. However, their forming process to a fully developed Crook differs substantially. Their entire structure is built off of a defiance to the Hivemind’s CCCat blueprint although some similarities still exist. Crook Height Chart

Crooks function similarly to CCCats in that they don’t need most organs that a living being needs, however they are more alive than their sister species. They need to eat to sustain their magic and the food can be just about anything that exists. Crooks have the same stomach-like organs that CCCats do in that they can eat anything and convert it back into pure magic for themselves. Crooks also have and require blood, and can suffer gravely if they lose too much of it. Their blood does not require oxygen and instead uses their magical essence and their food-to-magic cycle to keep their blood count up and at healthy levels. Crooks often keep their host’s lungs and morph them to be more bird-like to produce their defensive screech and sustain their ability to produce multiple sounds at once. Most other organs for smaller processes are not needed, and they do not retain nor have any reproductive systems.

Mouth

A Crook’s inner set of human teeth within their mouth is a remnant of their predecessors, the Hell Lickers. Crooks developed as the ‘tear’ between Hell Lickers and CCCats, a creation of something new after CCCats Crook Teeth Example began to mix and spread the Hivemind blueprint to be more CCCat rather than Hell Licker. Since Crooks were disbanded from the Hivemind, they were able to remember their Hell Licker roots and keep some of their features since the Hivemind no longer had the ability to persuade Crooks to avoid Hell Licker traits. Their muzzle emulates pulled back skin as a showing of the CCCat spherical head shape not properly encompassing the Crooks’ now longer faces, and the change in the original Hivemind blueprint.

Crooks do have lips, but instead of being on the front of their mouths they are located on the side of their mouths. Their internal mouth has windpipes on either side, with pieces of skin and muscles that allow breathing through the outer mouth even if their internal mouth is closed.

Cluster Eyes

A Crook’s eye cluster is best symbolized as their connection to their host. A smaller number of eyes in a cluster is a lesser bond with their host, whereas more eyes in a cluster could mean that a greater bond was created between Wormling and host.

Tendrils

Unlike a CCCat’s crowns, a Crook’s tendrils are a vestigial trait that only work as an additional sense of touch, Crook TendrilsExampleinvestigation, or as eating tools. Since their disconnect from the Hivemind in their Wormling stage, they are unable to use the Hive to communicate and unable to have telepathic thoughts. Any harm done to the tendrils would result in expected pain and would need to heal, but their tendrils can be healed back to full growth if given enough time.

Shapeshifting

Crooks have several forms that they can transform into: a human form, a halfling form, a centaur form, and a sphinx form. It is theorized that these forms come from their original connection to the CCCats blueprint, though no one knows for sure. Crooks are also known to be more flexible than a CCCat.

A Crook in their human form looks very similar to a regular human, though some of their more prominent traits like their facial skin patch as well as their cluster eyes will always be visible. Their eye colors remain the same as their eyes in Crook form, and though it is not required their tendrils may show should the Crook so desire.

Mortality

The lifespan of a Crook is normally hundreds of years - as long as they do not take substantial damage that they can not heal themselves, or become unable to properly cycle their magic. Compared to CCCats, a Crooks healing factor is not as powerful and dire mortal wounds are far more likely to kill a Crook.

Despite Crooks being considered closer to mortal compared to CCCats, they still have the ability to reconnect and reform their bodies after death if not properly disposed of. The part of the body that houses their eye cluster must be disposed of with extreme methods in order to be properly killed for good, as just dismembering and separating their body pieces is not enough to keep a Crook deceased. The most common way to stop a Crook from reforming after death is to submerge the body piece with the Crook’s cluster in powerful acid, or burn it to ashes with a severe flame.

Survival

Crooks are a tenacious species and are known to fight ferociously, having a much higher instinct to fight for their lives or fight whatever may bring them harm. This is in part because of their higher vulnerability compared to their CCCat counterparts. Though some Crooks are far more human in behavior, there is always an underlying desire to survive. Despite this, it is hard for a Crook to take serious injuries from anything other than other Crooks or organized attacks.

Crooks have structured themselves to be stronger with their fighting skills, and compared to other Skireans are far better at powerful attacks and striking enemies down quickly. However in a battle in which a Crook is spending too much energy to fight or heal, they may run out of stamina or energy to continue, and will ultimately collapse if the energy drain continues.

In the regions of Skire (Landmass) where hunting is a necessary activity, many Crooks hunt in packs or Protections commonly. Following their time in The Banishment where hunting other Crooks for sustenance was necessary, it was commonplace for singlet Crooks to be preyed upon, so most formed Protections when possible to keep themselves safe. This habit continued into their release, as many Crooks have not shaken their imprisonment.

Lifestyles & Communication

Crooks tend to be either black or white in the way that they behave. They do not often like to mimic the culture they reside in, and would rather try to make their own unique lifestyle. They are commonly found in the wastelands or cities, but some Crooks have been known to embrace a brutish and/or a lack of ideal mindset. Unlike CCCats who have powerful connections to each other and wish to not harm one another, Crooks have been known to readily slay their own kind or others.

Although Crooks do need to eat resources in order to sustain themselves, it is usually proportionate to the energy they spend magically. A Crook can go an extended period of time without needing to eat if they maintain a relatively simple lifestyle and do not spend much time casting magic. Some Crooks with extremely relaxed lifestyles that distance themselves from magic use have been able to remove their need to eat at all, though they do need to be careful to maintain that diet. Anything that may borrow magic from the Crook will drain varying amounts of their magic, which would need to be replenished if used.

Despite a Crook’s odd muzzle and internal mouth, they can usually speak words quite well, often with a hoarse echo due to their internal mouth causing resonation within their words. Their speech is audibly different from what might be considered “normal”, as their internal tongue forms the sounds needed for words in the back of their throat while their external tongue and mouth assist in making the correct sound.

When talking, Crooks sound like two voices speaking over one another at the same time, though one ‘voice’ sounds clearer while the other sounds quiet and hoarse. Crooks are known for their particularly horrifying ability to create a scream that sounds like a wail of death mixed with a strange reverberating echo of a ‘whale call’. This unique scream is only used in dire situations, such as a cry for help, to attack, or to defend. A Crook’s growl can sound similar to their scream, but it does not hold the same power or intensity that the scream provides.

Crooks borrow the same written language as CCCats and when it comes to communication surrounding titles they utilize a lot of similar patterns. The main difference for Crooks is that they are entirely removed from the Hive, and do not use most words or symbols that utilize it. Their written titles will often borrow from “Unique Life” or “One’s Own Story”, however they more often stick with an adjective/descriptor below/combined with their name. References like “Myir - Dangerous” are pretty correct in how one might be described, where feelings are combined with another’s name. If a Crook has never spoken to the creature they are writing about, there is no emotion attached to the name.

Individuality is extremely important to Crooks; they are neither part of Hive nor Species in their own eyes. They would rather be seen as an individual alone.

Using a Crook’s name or “you” is an indifferent praise for them, as they care a lot more about sound inflection when speaking of them, to them, or about them. Since Crooks have two voices when speaking, it is very easy to slide in a literal undertone of distaste or displeasure, and they listen very intently for it. When speaking to a Crook, they normally prefer you speak their name and/or call them by “you” in a smoother manner, ideally where both sounds of the voices almost sync together.

Relationships

After the ending of the war and the finalization of The Truce, the relationship between CCCats and Humans began to stabilize and become peaceful. However, Crooks still believed in the old ways of their Hell Licker predecessors; protecting Skire (Landmass) being their strongest priority. This caused unease and fear between them and Humans. When Humans saw Crooks had retained some humanoid traits, memories of their Hell Licker ancestors resurfaced. They believed that a Crook Wormling would devour a human host alive, and all that remained of them was the screaming mouth of the human victim trying to claw its way back out. Humans also believed that Crooks followed the desire of their predecessors and wished to dismantle The Truce. These Human beliefs made the species far more intimidating to humans than their CCCat counterparts. Though this fear was short lived as not much time passed before all of the Crooks disappeared, into the time period of The Banishment.

Following their release from The Banishment, all Crooks had their own opinions of the other species following their time locked away. Some Crooks still hold a grudge or hostility towards some CCCats. This strained tension remained because CCCats were not punished as Crooks were, and they did not have to live through the hell of The Banishment. Though most hostility from Crooks regarding The Banishment is turned more towards the Skirean Gods, or Faceless Guide because of their roles in throwing the Crooks away for 200 years. Many CCCats didn’t know Crooks existed until they returned, since Faceless Guide removed any Wormlings that became “crooked” to form within the Alter World.

Depending on which Crook you ask, the opinion on Faceless Guide varies. They either despise him, consider him a tool and/or toy for the Skirean Gods, or see him as being forced into a bad situation that they pity. Many Crooks feel indifferent to Faceless since they know that the Skirean Gods could not just erase Crooks without upsetting Skire (Entity), but instructing a mortal wouldn’t harm their reputation. Most Crooks just believe the Skirean Gods are cowards.

The Return of the Crooks


Not long after the war took place on Skire (Landmass), there was a realization by Skire (Entity) that there needed to be guardians to watch over its creation. Thus, The One Who Saw Everything and The One Who Saw Nothing were created. The two Wormlings took on the forms of CCCats, watching over Skire (Entity)’s creations as commanded. However, once it was realized that Everything and Nothing had no dominion over the Crooks, they used the power of Faceless Guide to send any existing and any future Crooks to the Alter World, in a period of time called The Banishment.

The Banishment lasted 200 years, until two Crooks plotted and found a way to escape from the Alter World and back to Skire (Landmass). These Crooks were the protective Myir and the gentle Halik. Once they returned to Skire (Landmass), both of them had their own plans for how the Crooks should return - and wanted to approach it in separate ways.

Myir believed it important that Crooks and other Skireans understood their abilities. All creatures of The Creators could evolve and become better, and Crooks were an obvious indicator that even CCCats could evolve and become something new. Myir questioned why the Skirean Gods Myir Headshotwanted Crooks to be brought into their own unique prison, and why they were forced to suffer seemingly only because they showed progress. He thought that it almost seemed that the Skirean Gods were afraid that they were growing a sense of individuality beyond CCCats, and growing out of their original and intended design. Myir could show the world that Crooks could bring about the change CCCats failed to, and properly aid Skire (Entity) in healing itself and protecting it from the potential dangers of Human’s magic-absorbing ability. Myir had a plan to revive magic even in the Human city of Uto; to scatter Humans from their dependency on the city, and make magical Skireans feel safe in the city once again. This plan would also allow Myir to show all Skireans that Crooks were no less powerful than their origin species.

Halik believed that Crooks were punished by their sister species CCCats, but that did not mean they could not learn to give themselves new purpose. Halik was empathetic and understood why their existence could be scary, considering they had evolved with many Hell Licker Halik Headshottraits. While many Crooks could wind up feeling helpless or hopeless during their time in The Banishment and learned to only rely on themselves, Halik believed in the ability to receive help from others and give help back. They believed that with the aid of others who sought similar ideas, it could guide them on the right path to becoming another species among Skire (Landmass) and potentially bring back old magic that existed before Wormlings. Halik wanted to show all Skireans that crooked Wormlings were not the violent creatures that Humans saw them as, and to find those willing to stand up for peace on Skire (Landmass). They wanted to learn and adapt to the new way of life that now exists 200 years following the start of The Banishment, and to teach Skireans about lost and forgotten magic.

During this time of choices and decisions, many Skireans took the side of Myir and his plan to help Skire (Landmass). Myir’s objective to bring back a piece of the broken moon Ofae had succeeded, and the piece became planted in the deepest region of Uto to assist in bringing back magic to this part of Skire (Landmass). The stone naturally assisted in fueling magic back into Uto, but Crooks and CCCats are needed to be citizens of the city to help cycle the magic back into the area with their natural abilities to cycle magic. For this reason, finding them and other magical Skireans within Uto has become a more common occurrence.

With Myir the victor, Crooks and other magical Skireans began to utilize the technology within Uto. The city levels remain diverse and Humans are allowed in them, but they are no longer the dominating species in Uto. Humans no longer have the forces nor abilities to build their nullifying Tech factories outside of the city, nor will magical Skireans allow them to do so again. Humans are now more commonly found in the cities and areas outside of Uto, and are found interacting with magical Skireans more often, but magical Skireans still lead the population. Following the diversification of Skire (Landmass) as a whole, Humans have started to show the magical Skireans their technology and help all Skireans they work with advance in either Tech or Magitech. Space travel was even unlocked for Skireans, and as time advances it is expected to only flourish.

Following Myir’s victory, Halik has disappeared and is considered missing. It appears no one really knows of his whereabouts, though some believe he might have perished.

crooks.txt · Last modified: 2022/09/22 19:35 by palleteclipse

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