An Alternate History of the Netherlands is a little something I've been working on since 2008, and it follows the evolution of a world in which the Dutch were not divided along religous lines during the Dutch Revolt of the last 16th Century. Along with An Alternate History of the Netherlands, some of my other projects, such as the Stardust Sequence (since 2000) and the Wing Commander reboot (since 2010) may make appearances.
The World Today
Earth in 2013
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Half lion, half eagle, all protoceratops.
Living in the hills and mountains that overlook wide open plains, are another
other species of sextapod; the griffon. A griffon is often described as
half-eagle and half-lion. The typical griffon is about the size of a lion. Like
the parocophant, the griffon also hails from the dragon homeworld. Nobody knows
why dragons brought them along, since they play no role in dragon diets, but
the most common hypothesis is that they were pets. The truth may never be known
for dragons are not talking about it.
Their heads are like that of an eagle, including the lack of teeth. Griffons
feed by using their beak to shred their prey. Their eyes are those of an eagle,
and just as keen.
Their body and tail look just like a lion, with the exception of the main of
feathers around the neck of the males.
Their wings and forward limbs take after birds-of-prey. However, their rear
limbs take a resemblance to lions.
They are covered in patterns of white and tan feathers.
They are almost strictly predators, scavenging only when times are desperate.
They stalk their prey from the skies, often pouncing on then from up to a
hundred meter above them. Like an eagle, they dive down on their prey,
clutching them with their forward talons. Usually, this piercing injury kills
the prey quickly. If not, it is quickly followed by the impact of the griffon
upon the item of diet.
Griffons, like all sextapods, do not suffer from old age or TNA break down.
However, their lives are rougher than parocophants or dragons, and they tend to
fall to injury more often than not. They will hunt until they can no longer
hunt, then they die. Still, they will outlive all species of humans. They grow
to their adult size in only a few years.
Unlike parocophants, griffons look after their young. They will roost high up
where no predator could reach them. Clutches of up to five eggs are guarded in
turns by both mother and father. After hatching, the chicks, or cubs, or
whatever one wishes to call them, grow fast and require constant feeding.
Within six weeks the young are ready to take flight. Though they are quick
lethal to small prey, young griffons will stay with their parents until twelve
to fifteen weeks of age. By then, the parental instincts fade and the parents
leave the young to fend for themselves.
Griffons have undergone domestication by humanity, and are ridden by those
light enough for them to carry aloft. Unlike parocophants, griffons tend to be
loyal to their humans or gobli. The only time a griffon will leave their rider
is when their mating instinct kicks in. Once their young are on their own, griffons
usually return on their own accord. Like house cats, griffons will both accept
feed and hunt for their own food. Unlike house cats, griffons will defend their
riders and form a strong bond with them. Griffons are naturally social animals,
but often requirements of food and scarcity of prey force them into solitary
Open plains near mountains. They prefer to hunt on the plains, but they nest
high in the mountains. As such, they tend to hunt in the mountains as well.
Griffons are capable of understanding verbal commands issued by their riders,
but their natural communication is an odd mix of screeches and roars. They do
not sound like a lion or eagle, but rather a merger of both animals’ sounds.
Enemies:Griffons are wary around dragons just like
parocophants. Griffons were seen more as pets, a species that amused Blue
Dragons that share the open plains with them.