Propolis Bile

Overview

Description

This is a thick living slime produced naturally by most hives and worker drones of the swarm cast. It is black and thick like mud, certain types are corrosive to the touch but they generally feel almost like sticky liquified flesh.

Over time they harden into a solid form, allowing the Swarm building blocks from which to build their hives.

The bile is a super-organism that's actually connected to the hivemind. It serves as a node for expanding The hivemind's senses over large areas.

Effect

This bile reproduces rapidly for a good thirty feet. It is highly corrosive and can break down nearly any nonmagical material, taking whatever resources are found and converting it into a substance that is then usable by the swarm both for building and creating a nurturing environment for reproduction.

The swarm builders secrete this substance, they spread it around and when it's work is done some of the worker drones are able to go into a chrysalis in order to take that nurturing substance and convert it into new creatures or even constructs that the swarm requires.

Amorphous: The bile can expand through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing.

Corrosive Form: A creature that touches the bile or hits it with a melee attack while within 5 feet of it takes acid damage. Any nonmagical weapon made of metal or wood that hits the bile corrodes. Nonmagical ammunition made of metal or wood that hits the bile is destroyed after dealing damage. The bile can eat through 2-inch-thick, nonmagical wood or metal.

Spider Climb: The bile can reproduce and climb difficult surfaces, including upside down on ceilings.

Aberrant Ground: The ground covered by the bile is doughlike difficult terrain that only the swarm can move effortlessly across. Each creature that steps on the bile have a chance of being unable to move entirely or even be unable to stand.

History

Background & Lore

The bile is a super-micro-organism. An assimilated black pudding that serves a variety of functions for the Swarm.

It was discovered by the swarm when they did research into assimilating slimes and oozes for ways to expanding their numbers.
Once the substance was discovered and put into use its other uses for building became evident.

Unlike other slimes, the bile is immobile and only expands by reproducing and becoming larger. If two different masses of bile meet they combine into a single organism.

The Viral Strain of the processing bile is simply a different form. Based on the ooze genetic template it remains a living organism, but it's spread like a disease through living creatures.
Living creatures who contract this viral strain become sick within a week and within two days are quickly bedridden. Depending on the situation it could then take three weeks to a few days for the viral strain to fully infest the living creature, creating an infested version of the creature.

In the beginning stages it manifests as a mild cough, but within two days it worsens until the victim is bedridden. During the bedridden stage the victim begins coughing up black bile as the viral strain begins to feed and reproduce inside the victims body. As it progresses the victim proceeds to the vomiting stage where they start regurgitating larger amounts of the black bile.
By the five day mark the victims will begin to exhibit black stains on their skin in splatter patterns wherever they cough or vomit on themselves. From there they begin to manifest spines and tendrils that grow and grow until...

Because it is specifically a living organism it's better classified as a parasite rather than a disease or poison. Regular healing magic can temporarily slow the infection process as it repairs the damage done to the creature, but healing magic will also heal the strain in the process, allowing it to propagate and redouble its infestation efforts to an even greater degree.
Healing potions, herbs, medicines and other normal or magical methods of curing diseases are treated as food to help the strain grow and quicken the process of infestation. But dark magics, negative healing and necrotic energy can kill off the disease.

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