The Creep is a semi-sentient, living gelatinous substance that exists mainly in the Wastes. It devours any living thing it touches as it spreads. Smaller blobs of Creep (often called Creeplings or Creepers) have been known to inhabit caves and other dark, dank places.
Nature and Origin
The exact origin of the Creep is unknown, but since it is mostly found in the Blasted Wastes, it's assumed to be an unintentional creation of the magical blast that eradicated that area. Since then, some of it has spread to other places, including the Underworld, where great lakes of it are said to thrive, since it loves the darkness.
The Creep is a gelatinous substance that slowly spreads outward, devouring plants and animals caught in its grasp, until it has engulfed all life in an area. Its color is usually purple, but may be other colors (such as red or green) depending on its habitat and diet. It reverts to a dull grey when it enters its dormant state, which happens whenever it goes for too long without feeding, usually when it can find no other living things to eat. Dormant Creep can be reawakened by the slightest touch of a living thing, which it will then try to devour. The Creep can form tendrils of its mass to grab objects like tentacles, but like the rest of its bulk, these tendrils are slow-moving and easily avoided by most animals and people... unless they have nowhere to run. If they are devoured, they often become Creeplings.
The Creep eats as slowly as it moves. When it engulfs a person or animal, it sometimes takes control of their body as it is digesting it, using the creature's form in order to move about more quickly. It also seems to become more intelligent depending on the intelligence of the creature it devours. Eventually, as its prey is digested, it begins to lose its form again, until it is reduced to a simple blob of mobile Creep. These Creeplings continue to rove about, seeking out new victims with their still-enhanced speed and intelligence. If they fail to find any, they will eventually enter the dormant state.
Some Creep pools or blobs may have different colors and abilities depending on their environment and diet. The "normal" color of living, non-dormant creep seems to be a greyish purple. Most subterranean pools or blobs of Creep are this color, as are most found in the Wastes. Creep living in areas of volcanic activity is often red, and may absorb volcanic gasses and use them to belch out streams of fire. The most common color of Creep found in the mortal realm is green, from eating lots of plant matter. Green Creep is more resistant to sunlight, more likely to form tentacles for attack, and may even be toxic or acidic to the touch.
The Creep is weak to certain elemental attacks. It is immune to heat, to the point that it can actually float on a lake of lava, but it hates cold, which can freeze it solid and force it into its dormant state. Exposure to bright light also weakens it and will eventually force it into dormancy, which is why it usually lives in dark places. Lightning is the only thing known to kill Creep permanently, for reasons that are not fully understood. A blob of Creep struck by lightning turns into a brittle, dead material that will easily break into dust.
The best way to fight the Creep is simply to avoid it, since it is slow-moving. Anything it touches usually becomes tightly lodged in the substance, taking great strength to pull free. Creeplings grab things less easily than do larger pools of Creep, but physical attacks are just as useless against them. The fastest Creeplings are those possessing a humanoid form, but the limbs of these humanoid Creeplings can be severed or smashed, reducing them to their slower blob-like state for easier escape. But the attacker must take care not to become ensnared as the blob's next victim.