|Cover art by Richard M. Powers|
There is a touch of a one-eared Anubis about these fluid sculptures. And, of course, The Serpent. Big blocky striations like teeth pop up everywhere on these structures, and then slowly dissolve as new mucoid layers flow over and shift their architecture.
The sculptures appear on desolate, abandoned worlds. They are usually found near ruins that are at least 10,000 years old. Sometimes they sit on top of ancient built environments, or immediately in front of cliff tombs. Whether they mark ancient sites or are intended to obscure them is a matter of passionate conjecture.
When such structures are encountered, it is best not to touch them. Sometimes contact results in contamination with a viscous penetrative slime. Quarantine measures are recommended after contact with this material. At other times, the structure appears to be quite solid. Unfortunately, it is at precisely these moments when the sculptures are the most dangerous. In this glassine state, the sculptures are highly friable, and prone to sudden, catastrophic collapses. The shards can be long and deadly, like the spears of some long forgotten elf army.
Those who have visited these guardian structures have often reported hearing voices. Oddly, such voices do not appear in audio recordings of structure surveys, nor have they been successfully recorded using simsense devices. Nexialists and other psi-sensitive researchers attest that these structures are psychically active, and hypothesize that they constitute a form of weaponized psychic architecture.