Good question. Essentially the Cervid’s bones are designed to be incredibly strong for what they are, to the point where they outclass steel for strength and weight. People will often design luxury weapons or other machines out of Cervid bone or horn as it is often stronger and lighter than it could otherwise be.
As to the King Toise, it mostly persists by lightening itself as a byproduct of its pseudo-photosynthesis. It manages to convert sunlight into hydrogen by essentially utilising a biological electrolyzer that splits water into hydrogen and oxygen. The oxygen is passed to the lungs and the hydrogen is stored in bladders all over the body, effectively reducing the weight of the animal overall and crucially supporting those vital points most at strain.
Coincidentally this technically makes the King Toise an explosive.
King Toises spend most of their lives in hibernation, allowing their in-built solar array to maintain their mass and otherwise keep them alive. They wake up periodically to start eating in the traditional way in order to increase their size.
The buildup of hydrogen dictates these cycles. When Toises start to feel physically heavy, they know to begin their hibernation cycle, where their hydrogen bladders can be slowly refilled and inflated over the course of the next few years or even decades.
Gawrsh… Thank you.
I like all of them too. I’ll be sure to get a bit more together for you soon.
It does periodically happen, yes. When hibernating Toises prefer to dig the bottom of their bodies into the ground, essentially hiding any distinguishing features that separate them from the surrounding area. So people can blunder onto them without really knowing why.
I mentioned earlier the name Zaratan the Emperor, a semi-mythical King Toise that nested in the Eastern Territories some 3000 years ago. This beast was supposedly so large that it was mistaken for a large hill, and a large population of itinerants settled on and around the hill. After some 50 years a flourishing city had sprung up that was establishing trade routes all over the Rings, and was fast becoming a regional power all on its own.
Then Zaratan woke up.
The King’s Mansion suddenly bucked violently and the entire hill it was situated upon violently lurched, killing the entire Royal Family in a thankfully brief but undeniably messy fashion.
The enraged Toise tore the entire city apart, sweeping entire districts aside with its enormous limbs.
The legend states that he spewed flames right down the market street and immolated the entire residential district. The survivors evacuated the city and watched from afar as Zaratan began eating the remains of the city.
The monster’s location was lost shortly after that, and it is said that he still exists as one of the innumerable rocky mountains and hills of the East.