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Common Haunt/Night Pad (OLD!) by Dragimal Common Haunt/Night Pad (OLD!) by Dragimal
all around me are familiar faces
worn-out places
worn-out faces
/lord give me strength this took at least 8 1/2 years/

plz download for a clearer version, if u want, cus' this file is fucking huge


Name- Common Haunt Dragon (human)/Night Pad (dragon)-

Class- Mammalia (??? gills ???)

Species structure- Collectively called a band, this species has little structure other than the fact that they tend to stick together. No specific band member has any greater authority than another, which does not pose a problem, as they generally don't quarrel over decisions and just, "go with the flow". There are no specific healing members, as individuals see healing practices as primary knowledge, and make a point to teach their young the ways of healing.

Temperament- Generally a docile and intelligent species, known for being curious, excitable, friendly, and energetic. Hardly territorial, if at all, so are fairly welcome to other creatures. Though, they are fairly protective of the balance of nature, and tend to get defensive of it when it is threatened (this leads them to a certain level of disdain for humans). It is very difficult to offend a Haunt, as they are very laid-back in their habits and beliefs (tho, again, don't mess w/ nature, or purposefully cause harm to other creatures, or they'll boot ya out). While their curiosity leads them to an interest in aesthetic things (tend to collect little baubles and other whatnots they find interesting), they are not at all concerned with appearances, but rather underlying emotions/thoughts. Can spook if something happens suddenly, such as a loud noise or a fast movement, and can be up a tree in a flash.

Self (reluctant to give much away about this, but basically 'soul')- This species' Self focuses on both emotions and general life energy, both achieved through a precise knowledge and mental connection to neural systems. They are powerfully empathetic, and are well-known for their influence on emotions. Their skents (the tendril-like extensions protruding from the back of their skull) and third eye are their main points of Self-detection, and are incredibly sensitive to changes in emotional/life energy (though, paw pads and other bare areas of skin are also very sensitive to Self, but not nearly as so as the skents and third eye). The third eye can see the alternate plane of Self energy in abstract shapes/clouds and colors (when both the main eyes and third eye are open, the physical and Self plane are spliced together as a physical plane "outline" with a colorful Self plane fill). This eye can open without the Haunt actually making a conscious effort to do so, such as during alpha or slower brain waves, such as theta and delta (so during sleeping, relaxation/meditation). The skents sense Self energy through a sort of 'outward' kinesthesis, which is 'read' by the brain in a combo sight/spatial awareness kind of way (also translates to the brain as touch if the Skents are directly touching something). The sensors that extend out of the skent tips are used for non-touch energy sensing and/or manipulation, and work well over long distance (the spatial awareness bit). The tendrils of the skent tip can hold and manipulate objects, and are used for touch-based energy sensing and manipulation, and are efficient in one-on-one interactions. The upper set of skents is more attune to general life energy, while the lower is more attune to emotional/mental energy. Energy manipulation works by Haunts connecting to the the neural pathways of other organisms (through eye contact and/or skent projection), reading the neural charges, and manipulating these neural charges for different emotions, senses, thoughts, etc. etc. (for organisms without neural systems, or general environments, this manipulation is less precise, and simply involves shifting and influencing Self 'clouds' of energy). On the emotional end of this manipulation, Haunts can project their own emotions onto others (so say they wanted to make another feel fear; they must be feeling the fear themselves in order to project it onto the other creature), "numb" emotions, temporarily, and take others' emotions unto themselves, where they can either release them down/out to the ground (if they're negative emotions), or bask in their glow (if in a session of emotional bonding, where individuals generally share positive emotions). On this end, Haunt Self is a delicate balancing act between Logos and Pathos- they must have enough mental capacity to keep calm and grounded when dealing with emotions, but also open and flexible enough to actually sense and experience the emotions they're dealing with. Individuals can use this emotional/mental Self in their own unique ways, such as healing, reading, or otherwise, depending on what their particular interests are, and what they decide to hone their skills on. Their talent with general life force is known by some as a "healing touch", as their energy naturally helps their own wounds/ailments heal faster, and the wounds of those that spend a lot of time in proximity of their energy. Their energy also tends to give an extra boost to the growth of flora (not very noticeable in short time periods, but in high-traffic areas such as frequent sleeping places, there is a particularly large spike in plant growth). And that is without even actually putting their abilities with life force to use, as they can have much more power of manipulation over life force if they consciously make an effort to do so (this manipulation applies to any living organism, including plants). They tend to be attracted to the dead/dying not only because of possible negative emotions that they feel pulled toward in order to alleviate, but also to diminishing life energy, and the subconscious desire to make easier the movement of others' Self from this plane to the next (whatever the next may be~~). Because their mental structures/thoughts/emotions are built to /be/ intermingled with those of other creatures and the environment, they rarely ever rope in their Self energy into themselves. Not that they have no self-control (which they have plenty of, as mentioned, in order to hone and direct their Self energy when needed), but they just simply let their Self energy loosely flow and stretch around them because that's what they instinctively /do/ with it. Self is their sixth (and most important) sense, so they naturally let it flow uninhibited out and around themselves in order to connect to and sense everything around.

Social- As mentioned in the Temperament section, Haunts aren't territorial, and if anything, love finding new creatures among their domain, both their curiosity and social leanings intrigued. They are incredibly social and have few personal boundaries, as their Self is so socially bound (explained a bit more at the end of the Self section). This can be a bit off-putting to species that are more solitary, especially those adverse to touch (touch being the Haunt's most important sense, it would be no surprise to find a Haunt affectionately patting or rubbing up against a stranger). Among themselves, Haunts can seem, to outsiders looking in, rather stoic/deadpan. This is a result of the fact that, since Haunts can sense emotions, they have no need for excessive body language or intonement, if any at all. This can lead to awkward interactions between Haunts and those of other species (especially if the Haunt is not prepared for the importance of body language on their part), which can leave the other species unsettled by the Haunt's lack of emotional response, and the Haunt confused by the other's own perplexed/disturbed emotions. Though, Haunts are quick to learn, and they catch on quickly to another species' form of body language (or other form of emotional communication), and match it over time (after all, they consider it their job to learn to connect with others on an emotional level). Haunts have almost no concept of "family" or "friends" in the human sense. To Haunts, those that they are emotionally connected to ARE their family, whether they are blood-related or not, so Haunts consider blood-bonds essentially worthless compared to emotional bonds (blood-related Haunts are often close just for the fact that they are often raised together, and emotionally grow close).

Cross-species relationships-
Diet~ Herbivore diet consisting of (depends on the environment they live in, but more commonly-) nuts, seeds, pine cones, fungi, ferns/other green vegetation, and the occasional berry cluster, if found. Haunts expend a great deal of energy on their Self powers and the advanced brain that directs such powers, so they must eat a LOT.
Diet to~ (depends on the environment they live in, but more commonly-) Eagles, owls, foxes, and other larger, carnivorous dragons prey on Haunts. Though they can find fairly adequate protection in the woven branches of the trees. Humans are also known to hunt them and use their meat and pelts.
Mutualism (non-animal)~ Haunts form what could be considered mutualistic relationships with various non-animal life (such as moss, fungi, clovers, etc.) found in their natural habitats, starting just about from the day they're born. Haunt flesh allows plants to take root when the roots are exposed to to the Haunt's skin (over time, of course- the roots must often first be properly tangled in the Haunt's fur to have enough time to make contact with and eventually root into the flesh). Haunts benefit from the camouflage provided, the constant source of emotional/life energy that can be shared and exchanged with the Haunt's own energy, and extra nutrients/products taken from the plants (always have extra oxygen nearby, and can gain some of the energy/nutrients produced from photosynthesis through their circulatory system's interaction with plant roots). The plants/fungi benefit from the exchanged life energy (and boost to growth), nutrients provided by the Haunt's own body (fungi can break down dead skin/fur, and plants/moss can gather inorganic nutrients from the Haunt's circulatory system), as well as a greater range to spread their spores/pollen/seeds (considering the Haunts can move around, aha). Haunts aren't prone to extended grooming (with the exception of their paws; they are quite adamant about clean paws), and with their usual high-humidity habitats, it's not very hard for clumps of plant life to get tangled in their fur. These bits of vegetation generally grow on the back and rump (considering those are the places with the least amount of disturbance), but can also grow a bit in other places (especially if the Haunt makes a conscious effort to try not to disturb any growth in a particular spot). Haunts that choose to live exclusively in a body of water are often covered in moss, or have seaweed drifting from their backs.
Mutualism (animal)~ Tiny organisms (such as insects and arachnids) also hang out in their fur, living among the growing plant life and such. The animals and Haunts share life/emotional energy, and the tiny organisms are provided with a safe, mobile home. Haunts that live exclusively in water often have tiny crustaceans (such as crabs) or other invertebrates (starfish, sea anemones) hiding in their fur, as well as little fish (such as minnows) zig-zagging in and around their fur and plant growth.

Belief system- Nature-based; centered around Self. They feel an emotional/spiritual connection to nature and other organisms, and feel a strong desire to protect the balance of nature, and help it flourish. Have a strong philosophy of "I" and "We" being closely connected, in that they always feel the connections between everything and everyone; there is never truly a pure "individual" in the Haunt mindset as much as "one among a collective many". Also have a strong philosophy of balance whether in energy (negative/positive), morals, health/soundness of mind, nature, etc. They love story-telling, and tend to gather tales from many belief systems in order to share (though they rarely truly believe any of them, since they lack a belief in deities/overseeing beings). Haunts have very different views of death compared to other species- death, for them, is not an end, but simply an event or checkpoint in the grand scheme of things; a movement of energy and matter from one form to another. Emotions surrounding death range from neutrality/somber respect (especially when dealing w/ the deaths of those of another species, as they try to respect and alleviate the negative emotions of loved ones connected to the event) to downright cheerfulness (when w/in their own species, as they spend the time celebrating the dead individual's life, and congratulating their soul for their journey onto another plane)

from shoulder- 2-2.5 in
from head- 4-5 in

torso- 6 in
stretched-out head to rump- 9-11 in
stretched-out head to tail- 25-30 in

Wingspan- 16-18 in

Weight- 2-4 lbs

Habitat- Haunts are incredibly adaptable creatures- wherever nature is found, they can be found there as well. Though the species is much more adept for (and inclined towards) thick vegetation/trees, and water. They are mostly found in temperate seasonal forests and temperate rainforests, boreal forests less often, plains/grasslands less often than that, and rarely in deserts/tundra. Some also opt to spend their entire lives underwater (they can survive in saltwater, but it is known to irritate their gills a bit, so they tend to shy away from it). Can survive in warmer climates, but tend to show a disdain for it. It really all depends on the water supply and moisture in the air, as they have a more difficult time living in dry climates for long periods of time (they also have an almost insatiable craving to be around or in water somehow, so it is rare to find them very far from a large water source). All that in mind, as mentioned, they really can live in any natural biome, just as long as they take precautions (if a Haunt lives in a desert, for example, they must make frequent trips to watering holes, and, as such, make sure they never travel too far from an ample source of water). The only environments they CANNOT survive in human-made environments such as cities, as their Self is so nature-based, they can't mentally or physically handle such an environment (plus, pollution in the air, water, soil, and few plants have extreme affect on their health, and can, in drastic cases, kill them). They don't generally have a home or nest of any sort (until breeding season), so they usually sleep wherever they deem comfortable at the time. Usually in trees somehow, curled around a small tree, or across the branches of interlocking trees. Generally stay in the same area for many generations. They have mostly nocturnal habits. They are much more comfortable with and accustomed to being in water, or climbing high up in the trees than they are on the ground or flying.

Battle- This species has very little in the weapons department, and is also very susceptible to harsh wounds, as they lack much protection. Given this, they RARELY ever involve themselves in quarrels, and generally opt for a 'flight' maneuver, or easing down a potential opponent from any violent emotions they are having (this could involve any number of things, such as actually talking the other down from their mental state, or outright numbing/replacing negative emotions). If they do ever find themselves in a jam, they must rely on their quick wit, stealth, flexibility, and evasive maneuvers rather than outright offensive attacks. Most attacks involve projecting their own fear onto their attackers, helping stifle the attacker. If they are skilled enough with and have a particular talent for manipulation of emotions (and feel confident enough to actually involve their sensitive skents in a fight), they can sense particular flows of emotional energy and certain bundles of nerves in others, and 'harden' the tendrils in their skents in order to send quick jabs to these areas (along with an emotional jab of extreme calm), numbing them, and blocking the energy flow in order to hinder, or even completely halt, movement in that area.

Speed- land~ 36-41 mph; air~ 35-40 mph; water~ 9-11 mph

Strength- 5-7 lbs

Touch~ The most important sense, the skin and general spatial awareness are extremely sensitive when it comes to Self (pads and skents, in particular). Both the gills and skents are extremely delicate and sensitive to direct touch, and can cause pain if done so harshly.
Sight~ Close second to importance in a Haunt. Slit-pupil, excellent night-vision, but both nocturnal and daylight vision are incredibly strong (their eyes provide a basic grey-scale view of the world, complete with shadows, depth perception, etc., while their skents provide the colorful fill to that grey-scale through the colors of emotional/Self energy around them, and their third eye provides a more refined picture of the alternate, Self plane of energy).
Hearing~ Large ears are rather sensitive to sounds, though not nearly as important or precise as their sight and touch (only minorly useful in Self sensing, as they can identify which frequencies affect emotions/mental energy in what ways, but hearing methods of sensing/manipulation are much less often used by Haunts).
Smell~ Below average; nostrils used more for breathing than anything.
Taste~ Extremely poor (to the point that they can barely taste anything unless they are outright smelling it).
Rough handling of skents is the most disorienting to a Haunt's senses, with bright/flashing lights and loud/disorienting sounds coming in at a close second and third.

Weaknesses- As stated above, harsh light, loud noises, and damaged skents are awful on a Haunt. They are a very touch-oriented and social species, so lack of either physical or social/emotional contact can lead to colder personalities, depression, and severely altered brain waves, in drastic cases. They are VERY unequipped when it comes to weapons or protection, as their species is more "flight" than "fight", so they are very vulnerable to serious injury. Haunts are especially sensitive to negative environmental atmospheres (places of recent war, for example), and this can take a toll on their health, especially if they spend large amounts of time in these atmospheres. Must be careful when using their emotional manipulation, since they must be experiencing an emotion in order to share it, and if they aren't mentally capable enough to deal with certain emotions, they could harm themselves by letting a negative emotion get the best of them. This is especially true if they accidentally project the wrong emotion onto another. Dry/hot climates make them lethargic and weaken their defenses. Human environments are an ABSOLUTE no. They are relatively uncoordinated on land (if you've ever seen a ferret running... and tripping...), and not as comfortable with flying either (made for short bouts of flight rather than long periods).

Appearance- Petite, bottom-heavy bodies with areas of loose-hanging skin and fur. Gills hanging from throat, just under the jawline. A flexible, stretchy pouch hangs just in front of the gills, and the gills are gently secured inside the pouch when out of water (the pouch is filled with fluids from specialized glands to keep the gills moisturized). Long, prehensile tail, starting thick and slimming to a small end. Two sets of long arms at the front (NOTE- they do have clavicles), with one set of hind legs, short compared to both the body and front limbs. All paws are plantigrade, have three toes and a thumb, and can nimbly manipulate objects. Thick-skinned wings with three fingers and two thumbs, and shoulders based just behind the second set of arms. The skin-flap of the wings ends right on the rump. Wings have a low aspect ratio, high loading, and rounded tips, making for high maneuverability, (burst) speed, and precision, but low endurance. Wing thumbs have long, sharp claws made to help with clinging and climbing. Bare areas of skin include the tail, paws, wings, ears, skents, and gill pouch. Small, flat tongue. Large, outward-facing, slit-pupil eyes, with one forward-facing eye in the center of the forehead (this eye appears as a mirror-like structure with a very light, faded swirl in its center). Each eye has a second eyelid for protection in water or high-altitude flight (though, high-altitude flight is rare for Haunts). The second eyelid on the third eye is specifically used most often when the Haunt is not consciously aware of the physical realm (during sleep or deep meditation) to provide some protection from outside forces. Rodent-like grinding teeth and incisors in a small, slender, gently curved skull (along with a pronounced bump for the third eye). Covered in fur, NOT hair. Skents tend to reach about full torso length. The bases are just above and behind the ears (connected to each other and the gill pouch by small bits of webbing), start out somewhat thick, and slim to a rounded point. 2-4 tendrils radiate out from the end of the skent (connected at their bases by a small bit of webbing) and can curl, flatten, straighten, etc. (somewhat comparable to a cross between a tentacle and a tongue in maneuverability, but lack a "slimy" texture, and are merely covered in soft, somewhat bumpy skin). at the inner junction of these tendrils are multiple small, delicate 'sensors' that reside on the tips of thin, wispy stalks that can extend in and out of a small hole at the junction. Given the areas that Haunts are commonly found, their pelts tend to range from dark reds, beige, greys, blacks, and blue-blacks. Though, appearance depends on environment, and pelts can change color with environmental changes (usually takes about 1-2 months for full coat color change). Eye colors tend to stay in the range of yellows, greens, and blues (with a pupil notably lighter than the iris). Fur always tangled w/ some form of plant life, as well as small animal "neighbors" (explained more in the cross-species relationships section), while bare areas of skin tend to be rather clean (especially the paws- they seem to hate having dirty paws) from their near-constant dips into different water sources .

Females- Jays, wider rumps.

Males- Johns, thinner rumps.

Mating- Haunts relationships range from "open" to polyamorous, since they don't always have a specific, life-long mate, and are incredibly affectionate to any and all pack members (not to say that Haunts don't have 'favorites', or closer emotional partners than others, but they really have little discrimination when it comes to mating itself). Individuals can become sexually active as early as age 20, but rarely start so early. Individuals usually wait a year or so after maturity to mate. During that year, youngsters will court one another (either a male or female may initiate) with short "dances", or rituals, if you will, of flaring skents, twisting bodies, and gentle purrs. The aesthetic display of the dances isn't so important as how Haunts use their Self within the dance in order to display raw emotion. Eventually, the real 'heat' begins, and the Haunts begin mating amongst themselves; switching back and forth between multiple partners (individuals tend to have Self patterns similar to their siblings, offspring, and other close relatives, so they are able to avoid individuals with patterns similar to their own, as this prevents inbreeding). Breeding occurs about every 30-35 years. Though, it is not completely uncommon to mate out of season.

Nesting- After mating, they all gather together and start to look for a good nesting area (usually up in the trees), and start gathering materials (leaves, randomly found bird feathers, pine needles, their own loose fur) for a nest. This may take several months. Gestation period lasts about 12 months. Litters usually consist of one kit, sometimes two (it is very rare to find three kits in one litter). All members of the pack care for the kits, much like a very large, extended family (mothers care for others' kits, switching off to give each other breaks, and males protect and care for each kit as if each one was their own), so it's all just one, giant nest of kits and their parents. This leads to less of a concern with blood bonds, and more of a concern with social/emotional bonds through interaction, and ties individuals closer together through a web of universal affection.

Hatchlings- Kits. They drink the mother's milk for about a year. They take a few months to learn to walk, but only a few minutes to learn to cling to their parents. Their gills are fully developed and usable at birth, but are ridiculously delicate, and must be gently groomed often until they become more sturdy (about 2 years). Their wings are strong when born in order for them to be able to cling to their parents while they are climbing or flying. Though, the wings aren't quite built for flight, and kits learn to fly at around 2 years old.

Lifespan- 100-125 years.

Language- Consists of purrs, and ferret-like clicks (dooks)/growls/hisses. A small bone at the base of each of the skents produces purring and many of the low clicks and rumbles when the muscles around it vibrate and knock it lightly against the skull.
Louder, separated clicks signal discomfort or anxiety; a warning to others to back off
Very loud, fast, but separated clicks signal extreme anxiety or irritation
Hisses ^ same
Low, connected clicks signal calmness or happiness, similar to purring
High-pitched chirping signals happiness, excitement, or curiosity

Physical communication-
The touch of one snout to another is the most common and general form of greeting and mutual trust.
Display of/touching of the paws is a slightly more intimate show of trust, but could also be displayed to anyone, and is important for bonding. Paw display would be answered with grasping/sliding of the arms and paws, or a rubbing of the snout against the paws.
The display of the throat is a more intimate display, usually reserved for close friends/family. Throat display would be answered with a nuzzling of the snout/cheeks against the throat.
Skent-nipping/licking is a calming mechanism, and is displayed when a Haunt is under extreme distress/agitation, or to just show affection in an already calm situation. Note that this is ONLY done to the base of the skent and NEVER the tip.
Interlocking skent tendrils displays a sharing of emotions and can be used in many situations, from a show of empathy/reassurance, to a strengthening of bonds. While it is a common display among individuals in the species, it is very rare for it to be done to other species (skents are incredibly delicate and can mean certain death if tampered with).
A flaring of the wings out and forward (displaying the more brightly colored/patterned underside), and a subtle shaking of them, paired with agitated clicks and hisses, signals extreme anxiety, and is used to scare off predators or other threats.
Samudre Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Omg. This is one of the coolest designs for a dragon species I've ever seen. I just really love the double set of arms, and the shape of the wings are different than what I'm used to seeing and it's just... REALLY AWESOME, LOL. I haven't read through the entire description yet but the amount of thought you've put into this is amazing :D
Dragimal Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
!!!!gosh thank you!! I was trying to go for a high-maneuverability, low-endurance sort of wing, so I'm glad it looks different from the typical wing, ahh. and this species is kinda my pride and joy- the product of years and years of thought and evolution (the first real species I ever created, I think,,), so their description has grown into the huge-ass thing it is now just from me thinking about it for so long (no obligation to read it or anything, cus' it's rly damn long, aha,,)
anyways, thank you!!
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Submitted on
February 2, 2014
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