VESSELIAN SHADOWFISH

 

AUGUST 2022 ART PROMPT

 

With the magical help of a talented siren, field agent Wynna was able to dive deep into Lake Llonash and witness a previously undiscovered fish species in its natural habitat. We have called this new creature the Vesselian Shadowfish. Included below is an account of her discovery:

 

"As soon as I heard there was a siren who could help me dive deeper into Lake Llonash I dropped everything and rushed to meet him. While us faeries are known to get obsessed with things, we also have a habit of getting bored quite easily. I feared if I didn't meet him right away I might miss the window of opportunity.

 

He was exactly where he was promised to be at the southern tip of Lake Llonash. Luckily for me, he hadn't had any visitors yet for the day, and my unbridled enthusiasm made him all the more eager to show me his latest and greatest trick. One of the magical abilities faeries can use, if they have the aptitude and willingness, is the manipulation of air. For example, it is very common for fauns to use small gusts of wind to push against their backs and help them run even faster. My new siren friend, Murahan, had figured out a way to manipulate air in such a way to create large bubbles underwater.

 

First, Murahan instructed me to get into the water. Then he stood behind me and focused his magical energies around my head as he slowly guided me deeper into the lake. To be honest, I wasn't sure if this was going to work, but sure enough I was eventually fully underwater with a large bubble around my head allowing me to breathe with ease. Murahan also made one for himself, for although sirens are able to stay underwater for nearly an hour due to a combination of lung capacity and partial gills, this wouldn't be enough time to explore the unknown depths of the vast faerie lakes.

 

As I had not dove into Lake Llonash before, even the first glimpses of fish were exciting to me. The lake was situated directly west of the dangerously magical Hallowed Woods and its powers had definitely started to affect the aquatic ecosystem. Though many of the fish were similar in appearance to bass, sturgeon, trout, etc. - they moved far quicker, and many of them had streaks of bioluminescent greens, blues, and purples along the edges of their fins.

 

The deeper we went, the more tense Murahan became and would often take my hand and pull me closer to him. I didn't feel the same apprehension, likely due to my excitement and inexperience. At least I didn't until I saw a flash of white and noticed something pearl-like floating in the water not far from us. After that everything happened very quickly.

 

Like a bolt of lightning, there was suddenly a streak of intensely bright blue in front of us. It forked out in every direction, giving form to a large aquatic creature that we hadn't even noticed was in front of us moments before. It's body was similar to that of an eel - long and muscular, but that was where the similarities ended. Its lower jaw extended further than its top, fitted with three rows of tiny, razor sharp teeth inside its terrifyingly wide mouth. Along its spine were rows of bone poking through its scaly flesh, ranging in size from 3 inches / 7.6 cm to 6 inches / 15.2 cm. Even its pectoral and dorsal fins were spiked as well, reminding me of bat wings or a frog's webbed foot.

 

But the real show stopper was the tail. As long as the fish itself, and this fish was already 12' / 366 cm long, were three ribbon like tail fins that flared out to make a giant triangle-esque shape. I assume this was to make the creature appear far larger than it was and intimidate potential predators. It certainly worked on Murahan, for he wasted no time in grabbing me around the waist and shooting upwards through the water towards the surface.

 

The creature did not follow, which made me feel both relieved and disappointed. In those last few moments before it vanished from sight, I fixated on the blue bioluminescent pattern and became quite convinced that it was matching up with the fish's circulatory system, hence the lightning shape. But almost as quickly as the glow had appeared it faded once more, leaving only that white, pearl-like eye sparkling back at me.

 

Murahan apologized for his excessive caution as we surfaced, but explained that some of the fish in the lake have been known to be poisonous. If something were to happen to him, the magic bubble around my head would pop and I would be as good as dead. He did, however, promise to send word should he see the creature again and would make sure to study its behaviours more closely. As for me, this adventure has only whetted my appetite to discover more of the aquatic creatures of the faerie territory."

 

 

Key Features:

  • Similar in shape to an eel

  • 12' / 366 cm long (not including the tail)

  • Wide mouth with extended lower jaw and three rows of tiny, razor sharp teeth

  • Spiked bone protrusions along the spine ranging in size from 3 inches / 7.6 cm to 6 inches / 15.2 cm

  • Spiked/webbed dorsal and pectoral fins

  • Three large tail fins that are the same length as the body - 12' / 366 cm long

  • White, pearl-like eyes

  • When startled will glow a bioluminescent blue in a lightning pattern that seems to follow the circulatory system

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HOW TO PARTICIPATE

 

To participate in the prompt, simply join our Discord and post your submission in the "prompt-submissions" channel. All past submissions will be gathered and displayed in our "prompt-gallery" channel.

Entries can take the form of sketches, paintings, sculptures, poems, short stories, photos, or even music! Choose whatever medium suits your art practice best.

At the end of every month, we will gather all prompt submissions and share them on our Twitch stream hosted every Saturday at 6pm MST.

Most importantly - we want you to have fun! We encourage you to use these art prompts as a way to stretch your creative muscles and practice your art skills.

Note: You can still participate in this prompt! Although it was released in August 2022, we accept submissions for all past prompts at any time in our Discord. Submissions for past prompts will also be included in the counting for the special Discord roles listed below.

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PARTICIPATION PRIZE

 

All participants will be granted a special Ecologist Discord role depending on how many contests they have took part in:
 
Novice Ecologist - 1 contest
Junior Ecologist - 3 contests
Senior Ecologist - 5 contests
Chief Ecologist - 7 contests