The Hostages
prefix tin suffix dromi
niephrazum tiltorn
3 ft, 11 in
16 ft, 9 in
1,317 lbs
size variance
core temp.
1-5 years
no. appearing
physical appearance
The tindromi /'tɪndroʊmi/ is a purple-eyed and metal-skinned stranger, whose sinewy, muscled body remains trapped within the cruel confines of its outer surface, leaving the stranger immobile, but not inanimate. Its flesh is interspersed with copper and alumnium wires, and though it lacks a mouth opening, the tindromi does possesses an oral cavity filled with glistening black teeth and a tongue that always laps at the gums, and culminating in a bundle of knotted flesh deep within the throat.
The tindromi's trapped flesh can be sliced apart with little more than a kitchen knife, and it heals from its wounds with oozing (but not endless) vigour. As it ages, even minor bruises to the flesh grow tumorous and leathery beneath the plates. This outer surface, though durable, is not invulnerable to rust, which tends to lead to an early death for many individuals.
The tindromi's voice is completely monotone, droning, and gravely in its distortion. It starts off with its own crude language, though its vocabularity grows larger (if non-grammatical) following exposure to human speech, whether such exposure comes from direct contact with sensitives or the wafer-thin warbles of a cheap five-year-old radio balanced on a tin shelf above a garage work desk.
Gechzi butt fuss ass, pimp pimp zochzi. Illiterate.
environment and generation
The tindromi appears in industrial interior spaces, such as warehouses, garages, and the open halls of half-empty factories. Its generation is made more likely by cool temperatures, slight breezes, and metal – stacked in sheets, molded into car hoods, or shredded into scrap piles. It does not appear above the ground floor of a building, but would not go unseen in a basement.
It starts off small, and grows upwards with a wrenching twist, the sounds of its scraping plates scraping through the space. The stranger is mature within the hour, and does not move from its point of generation.
behaviour and effects
Trapped within its metal form, the tindromi's personality shows itself only through its frothing desperation. Its muscles seeth, twitch, and pulse, but mobility is never achieved beyond the highly infrequent scraping of two plates. Despite this, the tindromi remains constant in its effort, resting only to heal the strains and tears placed upon its flesh in the process.
interactions with sensitives
The tindromi cries out in the presence of a sensitive – though its language remains unintelligible, its emotional tone is no different than a person crying out for help. Yet, its pain cannot be assauged – removing the plates results in fatal wounds to the stranger, and no amount of tender stroking can still its struggles.
In fact, the only thing that does quiet a tindromi is physical violence. A battered tindromi wheezes, but seems placated – at least, until their injuries recover, at which point the struggle begins again.
The tindromi does have a potential influence upon sensitives around them, causing magnetic waves to be physically felt underneath the skin for a period of several days to a week. A low level of sensation is present at all times, and though not unpleasant, can grow overwhelming – while a plastic alphabet magnet might elicit a tingling jolt when placed upon the skin, proximity to industrial magnets or other strong fields quickly becomes unbearable. The effect remains constant in its strength until disappearing in an instant, and without lasting symptoms.
The conditions for this effect, however, are impossible to trigger, and thus remain unexpressed in all instances.
interactions between tindromi
Groups of tindromi display a far greater emotional range than lone individuals. They cry out to one another much as they do towards a sensitive – unlike their appeals towards human beings, however, inter-strain interactions grow gradually more aggressive, as though trying to both yell over and quiet down their "companions".
Though the tone escalates at a gradual pace, over a long enough time, all individuals within a group grow permanently contentious – antagonistic towards even a sensitive that encroaches upon their discord.
aging and death
As the years pass, cumulative injuries and aging tissues dull the tindromi's fervent desperation. Its muscles become knotted, its struggles give way to breathy in-and-exhalations, and the accumulation of fluids and grime between the tindromi's flesh and metal exterior becomes a breeding ground for all manner of infection. It spasms only in infrequent pulses, until it can no longer move at all.
And, to quote the late R.P. Shearer – "Preparing for war, we should have been!" – now, by this point, you've probably already realized that you're not alone. But, there's more to do than just despair. You can find ways to have a little fun with things. So, if you've already obtained a converter pipe, you can attach it to the seam where the eye meets the skin. And then the really good part can begin, right? Elly Prauzner. Anomalies in NTSC-J vacuum tubes.
The tindromi dies with a sudden softening of the muscles, and one last lamentating cry. Its flesh liquifies over the next four to five days, this slippery grey fluid foaming and bubbling out from the gaps between its rapidly rusting, splitting metal rings. Though the metal remains far longer than the flesh, it too decays within the month, turning from ferrous tin to brown keratin, which crumbles to dirt when touches.