The omiridrine (/oʊˈmɪrɪdriːn/) is a golden-bodied, black-headed stranger with smooth skin and mirror-like eye markings. These markings are flat and cold to the touch, and appear embedded in the omiridrine's flesh. The orange sections of skin are hard and have a somewhat metallic texture, while the omiridrine's internal flesh is dark and fluid, and drips outward from cuts in thin streams. The omiridrine's black head, hands, and back toes are composed of a gritty, rubbery substance, which oozes like semi-molten tar, and leaves opaque droplets behind at its points.
The omiridrine's head and hands resist exposure to heat and fire, while its body melts when exposed to flame. When exposed to water, its black markings bleed dark pigment, but otherwise, this strain remains unaffected by moisture.
The omiridrine's mirror-like eye markings can be smashed with no ill effect to the stranger, and break apart when removed from the omiridrine's head with force. The omiridrine displays regenerative ability when injured, with its golden skin healing at a rate twice that of a human being, and the black portions healing sixteen to eighteen times faster than that. It cannot heal its eye markings once they have been cracked, however.
The omiridrine does not vocalize beyond occasional hisses.
The omiridrine appears in areas with large quantities of books, such as libraries and schools, although even a well-stocked home study can generate an omiridrine infestation. When the omiridrine first appears, it resembles a cloudy black stain on the ground, which bubbles and morphs upwards to form the stranger's body. The omiridrine is solid black and statue-like when it first appears, and it is only when it stands up and begins to move around that this black coating drips downward to reveal its glistening, golden body.
Rarely, dead and decapitated individuals manifest near billboards or other objects containing large pieces of text.
The omiridrine possesses a laconic, stoic disposition. It walks with slow, deliberate steps due to its head's heavy weight, and travels from place to place in long, meandering paths. It is an intelligent and dextrous stranger, and is capable of opening doors in order to find pathways into new areas. Although it is not violent by nature, it does display destructive tendencies when unable to open a door or window, and uses its surprising strength to smash open locks and tear doors from their hinges, with circumnavigation of obstacles occurring only out of desperation.
The omiridrine is motivated by a desire to seek out text around it. It prefers objects with a large quantity and high density of text, such as books, journals, periodicals, or newspapers, but also seeks out letters, leaflets, posters, and even food or clothing labels. Once it has found a suitable object, it drags its tarry fingertips across each line of text, leaving a heavy black mark behind on the page. The omiridrine appears to have some level of control over whether or not it leaves behind marks in this manner, with door-jostling and even firm tugging of objects leaving behind no such residue.
The omiridrine is a methodical stranger. When it finds a bookshelf, for example, it always begins at the first book in a shelf and works its way to the end without stopping. In addition, it always returns objects to their original places when done with its censorship, often leaving no immediately visible evidence of its presence.
Handwritten text causes the omiridrine to open and close its mouth at a 6° angle as it crosses out the words, but otherwise, the omiridrine makes no distinction between different styles of formatting. The omiridrine can recognize every language, and, in addition, is able to differentiate between normal and asemic writing, with the latter eliciting no reaction.
The omiridrine displays an agitated reaction to 0.00002% of words, and it crosses these words out over and over, often tearing through the page altogether in the process. As it does so, it shakes its head back and forth in slight but rapid motions, the edges of its lips curling back in a strained smirk, and its toes digging into the ground. This response appears random — the word "straightway", for example, might cause this response when encountered for the fourth time, without eliciting such a response at any prior or subsequent point.
The omiridrine is not a social stranger, and does not communicate or engage in interpersonal actions. The only exception to this occurs when two individuals meet for the first time, at which point each will press its right hand against each the other's face for several minutes before both continue on their way. The omiridrine does not compete over text, and each individual seeks out its own territory.
The omiridrine displays no interest in sensitives one way or another, and does not approach them. It does, however, exhibit enormous fear and disgust when a sensitive positions themselves in such a way that their face reflects in the omiridrine's eye markings. When this occurs, the omiridrine turns away from the sensitive in an attempt to interrupt this reflection. When it is unable to do so, it digs its fingers into the area where its neck and body meet, and scratches into its flesh until it is decapitated, an fatal act which takes several hours to achieve (and which it discontinues upon cessation of reflection).
Despite a mirror-like form, the omiridrine's eye markings do not reflect the human face with complete accuracy, and reflections often display slight deformities, such as enlarged or shrunken facial features.
Individuals with smashed eye markings do not display any reflection-related behaviours.
When an omiridrine is touched by a sensitive, it opens its mouth 10° for the duration of contact, but does not display any other response. When attacked by a sensitive, the omiridrine turns to face its attacker, then pulls its head back before thrusting it forward with a force powerful enough to impale the sensitive in the torso region. The omiridrine holds its snout there for several minutes, shaking as the blood drips down its face and neck, before it pulls its head back and returns to its normal behaviours. Following these attacks, the omiridrine periodically turns to stare at the corpse with suspicion, occasionally walking over to readjust the position of the sensitive's hand or head.
When an omiridrine encounters a human corpse whose death it was not responsible for, it uses its finger to draw a line around the entirety of the body before it returns to its methodical wander. In contrast to its rather extreme reaction to living sensitives, the omiridrine does not display any aversion when a corpse's face reflects in its eyes.
As it ages, the omiridrine's movements grow shakier and less coordinated. An aging omiridrine crosses out text in jagged or uneven lines, crosses out non-text (by drawing horizontal lines through images or across blank pages), or rips up entire pages instead of concealing the words themselves.
At the end of its life, the omiridrine's body hardens to the same substance that composes its head, feet, and back toes, and it dies when it solidifies. Its corpse grows brittle and charcoal-like, and, after less than an hour, crumbles into a pile of black soot.