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Other names (a.k.a): Grote slang, great snake of the orange river
Location: South Africa (Richtersveld cave system)

After the world was created the gods decided to create life. One of the first was the Grootslang, a half elephant half snake creature. Eager and inexperienced, the gods freely gave gifts and powers to the species. Most notable of these numerous gifts were cunning, intelligence, and strength. Shortly after releasing the new race into the world the gods realized their mistake. Grootslangs were much more powerful than any other of their creations, unopposed they began to dominate. Quickly the gods mobilized. To rectify their mistake they decided to split the Grootslangs into two new species, snakes and elephants. Each god scoured the lands splitting every Grootslang they found into the two lesser species. After this was done the gods regrouped to create more species, once they have learned from their mistakes. Unknown to the gods not every Grootslang was broken down, some had hidden in deep underground cave networks or far beneath the water. The survivors of the purge grew vengeful against the gods. Smart enough to realize they couldn’t directly oppose the gods many decided to take their anger to the “favored” creations instead.

Modern descriptions of Grootslang are inconsistent, the only consistent information being they are a forty-fifty foot, half elephant half snake hybrid. When the Dutch colonized South Africa they called monster the grote slang, meaning big snake. This name supports the description of a large snake with an elephant’s head instead of an elephant with a snake’s tail.

The surviving Grootslang are considered a cruel and evil race. Locals of South Africa to this day still warn travelers that Grootslangs still inhabit the caves and rivers. Famously they believe that the Wonder Hole/Bottomless Pit in the Richtersveld desert still houses a particularly large and cruel Grootslang. Grootslang are greedier than they are cruel. Each is said to have its own treasure hoard, similar to a European dragon, composed of precious gems and metals which it expands and protects viciously. Because of their greed if a human is captured they could pay a ransom in exchange for their freedom. Human currency does not interest it, only valuable minerals in whatever form they take.

Locals urge any travelers who explore anywhere near a suspected dwelling, to avoid cave mouths and rivers. This is because Grootslang hunt by the opening of their homes. Lingering in wait when a large animal or human is close enough before it lashes out grabbing them. Being the direct ancestor to snakes it would be able to smell and feel their prey enter striking without direct sight. Ironically their favorite meal is their other devolution, elephants, which can sustain them for far longer than other prey.

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