The houradrez is another stranger oft-alluded to in literature, and can thus be identified by its role in modern distortiofiction as much as it can by its clanking polywood rods. A newly-generated houradrez bore anywhere from thirty-five to forty of these rods, which fell one-by-one from the limping, burdened beast, whose gait grew more vibrant with each rodfall.
If the many-times corrupted and un-corrupted "original" document for the houradrez is to be believed, the strain became the center of a kind of recurring and ritualistic hunt. During such spectacles, the stranger itself appeared to act as a seemingly willing participant, tempting the hunters with its exaggerated limps and trails before bounding away down unlit wing.
The apparent return to the "jolly hunts" of yore and other such throwback behaviour of the antediluvian sensitives has been an ample source of pastoral
fiction in recent years. This primeval narrative endures itself in these romantic tales, despite (or perhaps, due to) the hunt's purpose being long since lost to the rushing red waters of the flood
The details of the strain that do remain, though, shrine brightly. The houradrez appeared exclusively in museums – places which, in the era's final years, grew both more solemn and more tidy by the week as "new" material was pruned, and more and more old works fell victim to any kind of private auction or deliberate destruction. Within these dwindling refuges, the houradrez led a relatively uneventful life. Though it seemed to grow more vigorous as it lost its rods, the stranger died abruptly once the last one fell out – a terrifying and existential consequence for the hunters of even the most post-genre pastoral fiction works.
You know, the story behind this one is pretty crazy. This was back when we were still planning to release a short novel based on The Naive's End
, so we'd come up with all of these medieval, heraldic kind of stranger designs. It was a lot of fun, bringing in such a different set of visual themes, getting into the black plague imagery, all that.
But, well, obviously that project got cancelled, so we had to scrap a lot of our work. the subject laughs, though their expression does not seem amused. There were a lot of issues back then, getting the visual department to clear work for public release...
We didn't throw out the stranger designs, though. Most of them, we sold off to private buyers, but a few of them we could still use in the main line-up. I don't even think this one needed any big changes to the design...
Though it's kind of funny, I had really liked some of the ones we'd sold off, a lot more than this one. But it's not like I can ever get them back...
the subject drops their gaze, ready for the next one.