Xanth

Zhyraeth and Pelysheth's Hatching - Spring 2007
Th'deus and Bronze Xanth

~ Egg Description ~

Amazon River Egg
Overlarge, sprawling, spanning a great distance… this ovoid proves to
be large as a whole and covered in a wide range of colors from the
swill of muddy, riverbed brown to the far more sparkling sapphire of clean
freshwater. While the southern hemisphere is dominated by the muted
azures of riversprawl, the northern is taken over by an impenatrable mess
of jungle peridots intermixed with spots of tangled bark reminiscent of
water-soaked roots. From fast moving start to slow, sluggish end, the
suggestion of a river carries true across the rounded shell, traveling
roughly east to west and plenty in between.

~ Egg Inspiration ~

A cradle of life, the Amazon river affects the lives of millions from
it's eastern starting point in Peru to it's sprawling basin on the
seashore of Brazil. The largest river in the world, by volume, it is also
generally regarded as the second longest river in the world. From bank
to bank, it can sprawl as far as six miles and at points the depth can
be as much as one-hundred and thirty-one feet while moving as fast as
eight miles an hour at some points. Home to the Boto (river dolphin),
Piranha, Anaconda and countless other lifeforms, the river was
'discovered' by Vicente Yáñez Pinzón (Captain of the Niña) who sailed to the
new world with Christopher Columbus.

~ Hatching Message ~

Amazon River Egg has long been a cradle to the life that now burgeons
within, straining to escape. Shards of muddy blues fall to the sands as
first a hindfoot, then a slinking length of serpentine tail emerge from
a crack until the whole shell is rent asunder to reveal its formerly
trapped occupant.

~ Dragonet Description ~

Serpent of the Waters Bronze Dragonet
Whipcord muscle strains beneath cinnabar flesh, sandbar waves of bay
etched across barren ribs to the wider spread of a muscular chest on an
otherwise wireframe bronze dragonet. Fiery cadmium blushes unchecked
upon slender wings, trailing wispy fingers to unite with ebon-tainted
gossamer where razor-edged pinions pierce into the darkness of leathery
sails. Shadowy hints of muddy cerulean gather in the supple line of his
tail from widened base to the fine triangular tip and again across a
hawkishly pointed muzzle until at last mired in the river rock hues of
high-rise 'ridges.

~ Impression Message ~

It starts as a tickle at the back of your head, a sensation that has no
originating point but spreads quickly through your thoughts,
distracting —encompassing. A flash of sulphurous yellow explodes behind your
eyes and upon the tails of the streaking light comes a voice that sounds
not unlike a mischievous boy… « Well, well, what have we here?
You're awfully big, but I suppose you'll do well enough… » Fading into
laughter that lingers in your thoughts, the voice is swallowed by a
sudden rush of sensuality that threatens to drown you in emotion and pull
you under but for the gentle lift of that playful mind at the last
moment: « I am Xanth, and you are mine Th'deus! »

~ Dragonet Name ~

Xanth (Zahn-th)

Taken from the Portugeuse name 'Xantiago'. Finding a suitable name was
perhaps the hardest part, but I'm hoping this one finds a comfortable
place at your fingertips and on the tip of your tongue. As a surname,
Xantiago may be derived from 'Santiago', so I've included some
information on that particular surname:

The boy's name Santiago \s(a)-ntia-go, san-tiago\ is pronounced
sahn-tee-AH-go. It is of Spanish origin, and its meaning is "Saint James". A
blended form of Saint Diego; Diego is a Spanish form of James. James the
Greater (of the two apostles by that name) is the patron saint of
Spain.

Santiago has 5 variant forms: Sandiago, Sandiego, Santeago, Santiaco
and Santigo.

For more information, see also the related name Iago.

Santiago is a popular male first name and a very popular surname
(source: 1990 U.S. Census). Displayed below is the baby name popularity trend
for the boy's name Santiago.

~ Physicality ~

For all that he came from one of the largest eggs in the clutch, Xanth
quickly proves to be on the small side, and in more ways than just
overall bulk. Whip-thin and leanly built, he will be one of the most gaunt
hatchlings on the sands, almost as if the little bugger spent all of
his egg's nutrition on trying to escape the thing! Though he has plenty
of strength and vigor from the start, don't be too surprised that he
tends to burn himself out quickly by doing too much, trying to eat too
fast, and absolutely not wanting to get in the much-needed sleep he will
require as a dragonet.

With time and exercise, he'll begin to fill out in his first year, but
do not expect him to ever become a large, bulky bronze —for that is
not his lot in life, and would certainly put a damper on his … er,
exploits. Whipcord muscle will form on his slender frame, but he'll be
lean and foxy from tip to tail with narrow wings better suited to trick
flying than the usual endurance expected of a bronze dragon. Still,
weakling he will never be, though it wouldn't be surprising at all if he
requires a steady hand and plenty of work to build up the endurance that
*should* come naturally.

~ Mating Flights ~

With a body more akin to a snake than a wherry and slender wings that
can turn that slim body on a dime, it should be no surprise that Xanth
will, over time, become a very skilled flyer particularly in mating
flights. With the addition of endurance training, he'll find it
absolutely no chore to fly either green or gold in spite of his smaller stature
though don't be too surprised if he develops a preference for greens.
[ For more information on mating flights, see 'quick quirks' below. ]

~ Personality ~

From the beginning it may well seem that Xanth is everything Thaddeus
is not, his opposite in so many ways that it's a wonder the two can fit
together at all —but you know what they say about opposites
attracting, right? In truth, Xanth is not Thaddeus' polar opposite, but in the
beginning he'll be absolutely certain to test his limitations with his
new rider and anyone else who happens to cross his path.

« What does this lever do? Don't touch it? Why not? »
Rider looks away a moment…
*touch* *THWACK!*
« Erm, are you okay Thaddeus? »

When it comes down right to it, he's a trickster, a playful imp, a
deviant with a wickedly perverse sense of humor which he absolutely adores
applying to any and all situations. A naturally jovial spirit, in a
dark manner, he will inevitably delight in being difficult as a dragonet,
and it may well take all of Thaddeus's strength to bring him in line.
Also, Thad shouldn't be too surprised if his new lifemate manages to
find, even as a baby, humor in the negatives of life —even the emotional
impact of a death will not keep him down.

« Well, at least now that he's dead we won't have to smell him
anymore… »
Really Xanth, how disrespectful and inappropriate!
« Hey, you're the one who said he smelled bad! »
That's not the point, and I hate it when you're right… *grumble*

Thankfully for 'poor' Thaddeus it won't always be this way, at least
not so publically as the uncontrolled mind of a 'toddler' dragonet oft
provides. Over time inappropriate commentaries, if not actions, will
become a more private conversation between dragon and rider —though don't
expect that sense of humor to be tempered much. Speaaaaaaking of
tempers, where Thaddeus may have one that's plenty spicy, Xanth really
doesn't have one at all and may infact give rise to Thaddeus's just by
proving to be perversely unperturbed the vast majority of the time!

He insulted you, insulted Madri, and punched me in the face!
« Really, I don't understand what you're so upset about. *yawn* »

Though his impish and contradictory nature will never completely fade,
as he grows older and more mature along with you, and you learn tricks
in dealing with him, he'll become much easier to handle. Still, do not
think you'll escape occasional outbursts as he'll always be an impish
soul, just know that when it happens as he ages you'll be better
equipped to handle it.

~ Personality Inspiration ~

Xanth's personality (and more his physicality) is drawn largely from
the mythological tale of the Mboiaçu, which is effectively a giant water
snake possibly an Anaconda and sometimes referred to as a
Cobra-Grande (even though cobras do not exist in South America.) Dwelling deep
in the jungles of the Amazon, some say the creature is a shapeshifter,
some a witch, and even a siren/mermaid. They also have several names
with multiple meanings:

Mboiaçu - 'mboi' serpent, 'açu' big
Iara - 'ig' water, 'iara' lord —Also: Mother of Waters (Siren/Mermaid)
Iemanjá - the Yoruba mother of all orixás and mother of the waters.
Janaína - Mother of all Waters.

Though generally referred to in the feminine, I've taken license to
adjust the mythology of the Mboiaçu to suit Xanth's decidedly masculine
self.

[Note: The name 'Iara' was coined by the Brazilian poet Gonçalves
Diaz.]

Excerpt from _Vampires: A Field Guide to the Creatures that Stalk the
Night_ by Bob Curran

~ The Iara ~

Closely related to the asema are the Iara, or Mboiaçu, which dwell
deep in the Brazillian jungles. Folklorists have sometimes argued that
these creatures are really the same and that both names refer to a type
of shape-changing witch. Some Brazilians have suggested that the name
Mboiaçu is simply an ancient Tupi word meaning "a sorcerer who can take
the form of a snake." The vampire glides through the jungle in its
serpent form, attacking anyone it encounters or crosses its path. Its
eyes are said to be extremely red and almost hypnotic; its stare is
capable of freezing its victims to the spot.

At other times it can take the form of a beautiful young woman with a
sweet singing voice who can lure male travellers deeper into the jungle,
like the lorelli of ancient mythology.

For more, see:
http://books.google.com/books?id=lK0iQcCUZqkC&pg=PA123&lpg=PA123&dq=mboia%C3%A7u&source=web&ots=oVg_sn9rly&sig=5oPpDEKehKK8V_hNobapnZuhz9k#PPA124,M1

More of Xanth's personality comes from a Peruvian story regarding the
origins of chocolate —he had to be sweet somewhere, right? The cacao
bean is native to South America's Amazon rainforests, where it grew for
millions of years before Meso-America's Mayans, and later, the Aztecs,
popularized cocoa as the "food of the gods."

~ Sibu & Cacao ~

Sibu transferred his powers to another deity, Sura, giving him all the
precious seeds. Sura buried the seeds and left the site for a brief
period. Unfortunately, while he was away, a third deity, a trickster
named Jabaru dug up all the seeds and ate them, leaving nothing for the
creation-work of Sibu and Sura. When poor Sura returned, the trickster
Jabaru slit Sura's throat and buried him where the seeds had been. Very
pleased with himself, Jabaru left the scene and went home to his wives.

After a time, the trickster Jabaru passed by the place again and saw
that two strange trees had sprung up from poor Sura's grave: a cacao tree
and a calabash. The omnipotent deity Sibu stood quietly beside the
trees. When Sibu saw the trickster approaching, Sibu asked him to brew
him a cup of cocoa from the tree. Jabaru picked a bean-filled pod and a
calabash fruit and took them to his wives, who brewed the cocoa and
filled the hollowed out calabash shell with the rich drink. Then the
trickster Jabaru carried this vessel back to Sibu, holding it out to him.
"No, you drink first," all-powerful Sibu insisted politely. Jabaru
complied eagerly, gulping down the delicious drink as fast as he could.
But his delight changed to agony as the cocoa born from poor Sura's body
caused Jabaru's belly to swell and swell until it burst wide open,
spilling out the stolen seeds all over the ground.

Sibu then restored his friend Sura to life again and returned the seeds
to him so that all humans and animals might one day grow from those
precious seeds and enjoy Earth's bounty.

See also: http://www.mythinglinks.org/ip~cacao.html

As I'm sure you can guess at this point, some of Xanth's trickier,
darker nature comes from the trickster deity known as Jabaru —though I was
unable to find more in-depth information on him.

Additional Links and Info:
http://www.meta-religion.com/World_Religions/Ancient_religions/South_america/myths_and_fantastic_creatures.htm
http://www.beautiful-mermaid-art.com/brazilian-myths.html#top
http://groups.msn.com/FoodiesCorner/chocolateorigins.msnw
http://www.masterstech-home.com/The_Kitchen/Articles/choco-history.html

~ Mind Tone ~

If Xanth had a scent that were transferred into his mind, it'd be of
the jungle: moist, richly scented earth, exotic flowers and the faintest
hint of sulphur lingering in the backdrop. To the mind's eye it comes
across as a rust fading out to pale yellow, and tends to linger long
after he's done speaking. His voice on the other hand is like a higher
version of your own, and most often very boyish.

~ Quick Quirks ~

As mentioned in the personality section, Xanth is naturally
contradictory/perverse and also has a decidedly dark sort of humor about him. In
line with this it should be no surprise that Xanth, upon learning his
rider is claustrophobic, will take a certain delight in seeking out
situations that are less than pleasing to Thaddeus —caves, tight spots,
etc. You name it, he'll seek it, but Thaddeus should not mistake this
for a lack of love because by Xanth's way of thinking it's the ultimate
expression there of: Trying to rid Thaddeus of this fear. For Xanth,
fearlessness is freedom and freedom is happiness.

In general, Xanth is not serious about anything his rider may consider
worthy of seriousness with exception to mating flights. When this time
comes, it may be the only time that Xanth is completely absorbed, and
while his dark sense of humor will remain intact and may be applied to
the situation, he will otherwise be a force to be reckoned with —and
serious, for once.

~ Bonus Materials ~

Let's face it, this is just a guideline as your dragon will be whatever
you want it to be and no doubt will change and grow with you as you
play him. I wish Madri could've been here to do him for you, as it would
no doubt be even more special for you, but hopefully I've done well
enough in her stead. :) Oh, and hopefully some day you'll forgive me for
impressing you to your little brother! RUNS! PS: You made it
awfully easy on me with your egg choices, as all three were mine, by
chance.

Egg description, dragonet and inspiration by Liette.

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