Magnificent Zgwirnias

The Magnificent Zgwirnias is a carnivorous plant native to Zariki, which was cultivated for decoration and entertainment value by the now-extinct Zarikilen. It has hairy, reddish stalks and vines; green, spade-shaped leaves; and brilliant violet flower pods lined with sharp teeth in a spiral pattern.

Normally only a few inches tall and subsisting mainly on insects, the Magnificent Zgwirnias grows throughout its lifespan. Specimens in the wild can grow up to five feet tall, and certain rare, cultivated specimens more than a century old have been known to reach fifteen feet tall or taller and are capable of eating full-grown sentients of some carbon-based species.

Notable for its muscular, prehensile vines and its active capture of prey, the Magnificent Zgwirnias also intrigues xenobotanists with the flexibility of its diet. It has been known to subsist on life forms from a wide variety of planets, one of the few species that can digest alien organic matter without genetic modification.


The Romypo (Syteizon, named after a mythical beast from Africa and India) is a mammal-like pet from the planet Zariki, formerly home to the sentient species called Zarikilen, who were eradicated in an AI uprising before achieving interstellar flight. The AIs were later wiped out by the Revised to avoid their achieving interstellar travel and attacking other sentients.

A romypo is about the size of a loaf of bread and is covered in a iridescent coat of soft setae when it is relaxed. When the romypo is angry or threatened, the setae stiffen explosively into brightly-color spines. It has a foot-long proboscis ending in a sharp beak, which it can unfurl at great speed to snap up the small, crawling creatures that form most of its diet. Its six legs end in large claws used for holding onto the groves of towering plants that grow on its home planet, and it has two tail bumps at the back of its body that can display spines in a fan as a mating display. Its three eyes give it excellent trinocular vision for navigating its native environment.

In the wild, romypo communicate through the forests with loud, barking calls. These vocalizations are often despised by neighbors of romypo owners.

Domesticated as pets for the Zarikilen, romypo were later taken off-planet and genetically engineered into three distinct breeds to be sold as pets to different types of sentients, including humans. The modified romypo were also bred in a range of brilliant colors. The three breeds vary slightly in terms of diet, tolerance of different gravity levels, and other features.

While romypo can be affectionate and comforting pets, they tend to be nervous around strangers, so that their barking and spines are the features most associated with them by non-owners. Their reputation for being loud and annoying is such that the joke is that the Revised wiped out the Zarikilen as punishment for domesticating the romypo.