imperial / metric
number
017
class
derelict
disposition
phlegmatic
height
0.3 in
length
5 ft, 6 in
weight
5 oz
size variance
17%
I.Q.
78,000
core temp.
-
stability
98%
prevalence
85%
constancy
88%
longevity
2-5 years
no. appearing
1
vision type
far
language family
mute
prefix droso suffix droni
vacuivoxe callende
physical appearance

The drosodroni (/ˈdroʊzədrəʊni/) is a stranger which, at first glance, resembles a sheet of dry skin shed from another stranger. Its body is thin and silk-like, and its eyes consist of holes in the skin of the head. The drosodroni possesses no markings or other distinctive details to draw attention to itself. It is always a dull, drab shade of grey, although specific hues vary between individuals, as does the apparent texture and density of its fabric-like body. It cannot heal from injuries, and is highly flammable. It makes no sounds.

environment and generation

The drosodroni can be found in a wide range of run-down, outdoor locations, such as the parking lots of low-income housing, in front of empty storefronts, and beneath the rusted cars of abandoned junkyards. When the drosodroni first appears, it starts off as a tiny scrap of material, and grows larger each time it is moved by the wind or by an outside force, until it reaches full size.

behaviour

The drosodroni's disposition is callous but inscrutable. Because it cannot move, it engages in no actions with the world, and lives its life at the whim of its circumstances.

interactions with sensitives

Although drosodroni infestations tend to be persistent, this stranger's similarity to litter leaves it unnoticed by many sensitives. Those sensitives who do notice the drosodroni find it in many commonplace outdoor locations, such as in piles of dead leaves, strung up on power lines, or at the bottom of drainpipes and gutters. For every drosodroni noticed by a sensitive, however, there are guaranteed to be many more nearby, in such unseen locations as beneath dumpsters, knotted around chain-link fences, or flattened between crates in alleyways.

As the drosodroni lacks any expressive ability, it is incapable of showing any physical discomfort, and is unable to protect itself when ripped apart. Despite this lack of reactivity, however, the drosodroni is a highly intelligent stranger, and it is when it is touched that its intelligence and enmity towards humanity become clear.

"He's been traveling for a long time, and now's a tired grey grease in the space between his skin and his clothes, and this stuff's not just dirt, either. (He's a liar, you know. He writes signs each morning and he tries so hard to gather sympathy the way some storybook maiden might gather up flowers.) He's been begging for months, maybe longer, and all that it's given him's meager portions of other people's styrofoam takeouts and they leave it in a spastic bout of pity, and it's just enough, along with the occasional greeneries from dumpsters be-hind fancy restaurants, to keep him from running on empty, but mostly what he eat's slop through and through, and he doesn't even care, because he's ravenous. When he slobbers it all down. And when the best parts stick in the cavities of all his teeth to get sucked out in hungered gasp-o's later it's as good as ever, and he loves it. He's a mongrel. And he loves it.

On the lower part of his bare foot (half the city caked to the sole), a rag's gotten stuck, and now it trails between him and the pavement and it picks up its fair share of dirt and grit-all, too. The wind it hisses needles over face. From left to right when he turns his head there's only cement, concrete, asphalt, and no manner of curve or flowering as far as vision spans.

A nearby alcove in the wall beckons him. And this place's half like some childhood sleepy-spot and half like-

His stomach swoops as low as a down-ed leaf. There's something black in the corner of his eye. Each step takes a thousand years. He lays down and pulls the rag over his body. It feels a black heaven sweeps upon his weary face. He says thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you." Gabriel, Ben. Your Lonely Heaven, 99

Physical contact with the drosodroni causes all energy and positive emotions to wither away to nothing. Sensitives who hold the drosodroni for more than several minutes lose all willpower to drop the stranger's body and walk away, and even the most militant of sensitives eventually become overtaken with such severe hopelessness and loss of motivation that they see no purpose in going on with their struggles. It is not uncommon for an afflicted sensitive to curl up behind a dumpster or in an unused shed, only to be found dead of starvation weeks or months later, when they are found at all. Their corpses clutch the drosodroni as if it is the only thing left in their lives that matters, and their face shows an expression of both utter sadness, and terrified acceptance. When an affected individual is rescued and moved by others before death occurs, the loss of strength and vitality is so profound that most must be institutionalized for the rest of their lives, and rely on others to force them to eat and drink, lest they lie down and attempt to starve to death once more.

There is no way to safely physically interact with the drosodroni without gloves or other barriers, as even several seconds of contact is enough to cause sudden and severe depression in sensitives which lasts for anywhere from two to seven weeks. Those sensitives who briefly touch the drosodroni in this way report a sinking, hopeless sensation, along with the faintest tinges of euphoria.

"It was a wordless voice that slipped through my ears and filled my thoughts – all I heard were songs without sound, and all I saw were paintings without sight, and it wasn't scary, the way a vision of hell might have been – in fact, it wasn't like much of anything at all, and I knew, knew, knew, knew, more than I'd ever known anything else, that this, this was it." Ruthven, Simionce. Journarie Prophetic, 238
effect on people and animals

The drosodroni also has a pronounced effect non-sensitives, who find themselves growing depressed and demotivated in this stranger's presence. A heavily-infested area can by identified by the tired, weary nature of its citizens, who lose even their desire to seek escape from their dreary surroundings. Because the drosodroni generates in run-down areas, it tends to spread across as a city at an increasing rate, its effect growing more and more pervasive.

The drosodroni's rag-like nature makes it appealing to animals, who use its body as material for their nests. The drosodroni affects these animals in the same way that it affects sensitives, and their corpses are found curled up tightly beneath the drosodroni's folds.

aging and death

The drosodroni's body rips and grows ragged over the course of its life as it is snagged by sharp objects or crushed under tires. Those individuals that manage to avoid destruction by external factors turn to dust and blow away on the wind at the end of their lives, and leave only a faint whisper that hangs in the air before dissolving away into stark, lonely silence.

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