Nixdine- The Snow Swimmers

World: Alfheim

Diet: Flesh

Length: 9’8″

Lifespan: 100 years

Habitat: Tundra, ocean

Activity Cycle: Nocturnal

Along the world’s icy rim, there are stretches of land where the ice never leaves the ground, where snow sits forever and never melts. In these desolate lands, food is scarce, and life often bridges land and sea to make its living. An exemplar of this amphibious lifestyle is the nixdine, an unusual and bestial offshoot of the undine. Depending on time of year, they hunt on land and sea alike.

A nixdine is a strange creature, glassy clear to the point that when staying still, they can be practically invisible, especially in an environment of ice. During the winter, they use this ability to hunt underwater, mostly attacking prey small enough to swallow whole. They will lurk just underneath ice, blending in until prey gets close enough to ambush. With their signature power, the ability to swim through ice and snow as if it was water, they may even ambush from atop the ice, dropping through when an unfortunate meal shelters below.

In the summer, they retreat inland from the melting ice. In this season, they swim underneath the rare few land animals they come across and jump out to engulf them, or prey upon the nests of sea birds who otherwise have no predators in their remote territories, in particular those who fail to secure a safer space in the center of their colonies. In particularly desperate times, they are willing to go after larger animals, lunging from below to hopefully tear a chunk from their body and dive away. Summer is also when the largest males establish shoreline territories, guarding a harem of females from all comers. Other males may challenge them through jaw-gaping displays, and if that fails, fights with sharpened fragments of ice.

Many legends speak of the origin of these creatures, all contradictory but agreeing that they are the creation of the Snow Queen, the Unseelie Fairy Princess of winter. In some versions, she turned undine into the first nixdine as a punishment for some great transgression, but in stranger tales it is sometimes a reward. Others say that they were never truly undine, but simply ice statues brought to life as living decoration and defenders of her frozen castle. Whatever the case, they are not fully intelligent creatures, but are still capable of making simple tools from ice and can be cunning predators.

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