Tuesday, 20 March 2012
Otyughs - unsung heroes of garbage disposal
As you can see from the picture above, they are a kind of ambulant octopus/Venus flytrap hybrid. Ecologically speaking, they're very useful. There is nothing an otyugh can't eat. These supreme scavengers can survive almost anywhere and are suprisingly common in urban environments.
I have this mental image of tiny otyughs being given as gifts and then flushed away when they get too big. The fantasy equivalent of alligators in the sewers, but more useful. Maybe somewhere there is a society that works to rehome outgrown otyughs. Or, as is the case in my version of Freeport (City of Adventure! City of Thieves! City of 1001 Surprises! City of Pirates! - yes, Ankh-Morpok in a parallel universe) - in Freeport, the humble otyugh holds an honoured place.
If ever a city needed municipal otyughs, it's this one. So Freeport has GarbageBeGone. This is a highly respectable firm which makes a decent living hiring out otyughs as mobile garbage disposal units. Each otyugh is accompanied by a team of handlers. The creatures are trained to an extent (they are not completely unintelligent) and with patience can be taught to devour specific types of matter.
While GarbageBeGone prefer to get their otyughs young and train them up, they do have a capture and rehabilitation programme for feral otyughs. Given sufficient time and patience, the otyughs will bond with their handling team - helpful when one considers some of the places a garbage disposal team might end up.