The branedrone (/ˈbɹeɪnədɹəʊn/) is a stranger ... .... thick of body and scrawny-limbed. Growing several hundred feet in length, ... its body is filled with large, flat tissues, with many large hollows between these inner walls1. The surrounding layer of muscles are strong enough, however, that it does not deform under pressure. Similarly, it weighs much less than one would .. ... .. many thousands of pounds, but it does seem to grow less weighted when necessary, allowing it to climb building walls without causing damage to the structure itself2.
... .. ..... .
.. . A crawler, the branedrone stays at the tops of roofs, where it attempts to keep itself hidden despite its enormous size. In its ... need to stay out-of-sight, it tends to go higher, rather than underground, taking refuge in the dark only in periods of absolute necessity. It moves primarily towards old factory buildings and establishes a territory once it has found .. a location which satiates some individualized and randomized criteria.
It breathes only in response to stress3; a dragging inhale and a phlegmy exhale ... .. ... adverse stimulus of any kind4.
Avoiding sensitives ... ... .... . The one exception to this need to stay out-of-sight comes in ... the way that it wraps itself around buildings and covers windows. It does not seem to be able to ... . see through glass, and can be approached as long as a sensitive keeps a pane of glass in front of their face (with clear plastic having no such masking effect). So, .. . it seems scared of a sensitive's face, but it does not mind photos of human beings, save for photos of a sensitive's face, which it .. .....5 Seven percent of individuals tolerate the back of the sensitive's head, and can thus be snuck up on if the sensitive walks backwards.
The branedrone initially seems to enjoy being stroked or petted, but always moves away ... .. sometimes with great panic, causing a level of ... to the buildings on which it appears.
Its ultimate effect on sensitives is rather minimal, causing some slight nausea to sensitives in its proximity, with this effect exacerbated tenfold by touch.
The branedrone's death is violent and ongoing. As it ages, it shakes with the mechanical ... ... .. sound of a subway car rattling on the tracks. Its inner walls undulate, and it moves as though shaken from beneath. It struggles to hold onto its surroundings, .. ... ... .. ripped upwards ... .. . .. . and can cause some damage to buildings in its way. Despite this ferocity of these ... . ... attacks, the branedrone's emotional response remains stolid. It does not struggle .. .... against this degradation in .. stability, but seems merely .. to hold on. Though its insides do rot during these seizures, this decay does not seem to be the cause of death, in and of itself.
These .... take over at semi-regular intervals. At first, they occur every few weeks, then every few days, and then every few hours, with each attack, in turn, lasting longer and longer. Initial "rattles" last for only a few minutes, with later ones enduring for hours, then days or weeks at a time, until the length and frequency eventually rip the branedrone apart.
Physical contact with a sensitive during one of its "death rattles" ... ... ....... .. . ..... ..... .... .. ...... ........ .............. ... ............ . .... ....... ............ ... ......... ... .............. .......6
The strain seems a bit confused by this; while it otherwise disregards dead human bodies, it paws at the dead sensitive that it has killed, turning it over with its small hands, before often settling on it entirely. It does not have any lasting interest in the corpse, however, leaving it behind when it moves on.
The branedrone's inevitable final spasm does seem to come with its own .. . its skin ripping apart, and ... .. ... an outward shudder, all the energy that it had used its inner tissues to regulate, now dissipating and .. . ... .... .. a loosening of bricks, a slight weakening of the metal inside of beams, and, in particular, a shattering of both glass and cement, which can radiate outwards up to half a mile.