(£eŋωi spelling: singular clacsimandri, plural clacsimandris)
The claximander is a huge reptilian creature, probably distantly related to the snakes. It has four powerful legs, two fearsome pincers, and an enormous pair of wings. From head to tail, it can measure from four to six metres, with a wingspan of twice that. On the tip of its tail is a poison stinger.
An inhabitant of Earth seeing a claximander might compare the head to a crocodile, the wings to a dragon, the forelimbs (pincers) to a lobster, the stinger to a scorpion, and the general body shape (including the rear four legs) to a lizard.
Claximander eggs are laid in clutches of up to twenty after developing for about 200 days. Eggs are between 60 and 80 cm long and about 50 cm wide. The eggs typically hatch within 300 to 800 days of being laid, though some have gone as many as 1300 days before hatching.
A newly hatched claximander is a mere one metre in length and lacks wings. It spends the first five or six years of its life in a warm cave where food is provided by older claximanders. When its wings grow in, it leaves the cave; by this time it is at least three metres long.
A claximander is not considered an adult until it has lived for at least a millennium, by which time it will have reached its full size and mastered flight.
Claximanders don’t really have an old age stage of life; they usually expire suddenly and for no apparent physical reason at the age of 100 or more millennia. The actual cause for this is believed to be a sort of soul corruption, where part of the soul turns to ordinary magic and destroys the rest of it.
Claximanders hunt various creatures in the lava streams beneath the surface. They also feed on the enormous fungal “mushroom trees” that grow in the larger caves.
Most notable is that claximanders have a soul of antimagic rather than ordinary wild magic. As such, they are accomplished wielders of this unusual form of magic. In addition to this, their sting contains a highly lethal neurotoxin which will kill most creatures in mere minutes (electrøs are known to be unusually resilient to it) and has no known cure aside from the cure-all fireflower (and conway/phoenix tears, which have the same active ingredient).
Society and Culture
Claximanders live in the deepest caves, often alone. They are not completely solitary, though, as they will often meet each other, and sometimes hunt together or do science together. There is a High Council led by a King, which mostly acts as a jury for resolving disputes and punishing crimes. The king is largely a figurehead in that he has only slightly more power than anyone else on the Council, but the position is widely respected.
The origin of the claximanders is lost in the mists of time. Like the conways, they were around to witness the demise of the first known sentient race, but that memory had long since faded to a legend by the time of the Fading Age. Together with that race, they played a role in forging the six Pentastones embodying a contract that shaped the laws of magic for future generations.
The peak of claximander influence was much later in the Age of the Plummeting Sun, when they made frequent forays to the surface and interacted with other species. After designing and building the Golden Tower, though, they slowly pulled back to their subterranean caves, and by the time the Fading Age drew to a close they were just a distant memory to most electrøs.