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Cernohund- The Branched Hound

World: Alfheim

Diet: Meat, some fruit

Height: 3’8 at the shoulder

Lifespan: 200 years

Habitat: Forests

Blending into the trees with their branchy antlers, cernohunds are an ancient breed of fairy dog that guards sacred groves and the homes of forest fae. With green fur and the patience to stay in one place for long periods of time, they are masters of ambush and guard duty. Rare is the forest tribe or hermit who does not own at least one as a guard dog.

When a cernohund is born, they entirely lack antlers. As they grow, both sexes gain antlers. They do not shed, instead continuing to grow as they age. As their antlers grow, they gain control over their small section of forest, gaining the ability to move trees, raise and lower terrain, and otherwise shape the land, mostly used to redirect threats away from their protected zone.

As they grow old, reaching into their 170s, their horns begin to entangle the trees, and bark grows on their bodies, making them tougher but slowing them down, and they spend more and more time resting still. If they survive to their maximum age, they stop moving entirely, rooting themselves into the ground and becoming strange trees. Some say that these ancient cernohund can awaken in dire circumstances to protect their homes once more.

Cernohund are extremely loyal creatures, but often never learn to trust those who come in from outside. If a bird forms a nest in their antlers, they will refuse to fight until the chicks have left the nest.

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