[Cosmosdex] The Universal Encyclopedia



New you / Face-off

“The faces we use today are so primitive in design. Sure we've placed screens under there, but when the power fails, we become useless. That's why I made these little guys. For the cost of something you don't even show to the world, it'll give you insights you never had before. It's a friend who will never, and can never, leave you. X)” — O-3 during his announcement of the shellage

Art by, Atomic

  • Strength-1
  • Intelligence-1
  • Charisma-1
  • Endurance-1
  • Agility-1
  • Luck-5

Danger Level: Low
Likes: Becoming one with their owner
Dislikes: Being pulled off their host

Attack Method: When attached to a host, the shellage entirely depends on its owner to wield and protect it. In the wild, this fauna spits out dissolvents to catch prey and dissuade predators. If all else fails, they retract into their shell and flip to hide the opening.

Environment: Moist locations, City waterways, Swamps, Rainforests
Lifespan: 180 years
Size: 0.9 ft tall, 1.4 ft long
Diet: Anything edible

Bodytype: Serpentine
Type: Symbotic Mollusk
Rarity: Extremely Rare

Original Creator: Atomic

Physical Description

A slithering face is one of the last things one would expect to find deep in a rainforest. The shellage is a snail-like creature with a ring of eyes that give it 360 vision. Its shell has the appearance of a mask of notail make. They have a limited amount of bases currently, but more configurations and looks are being released every year.

The front half of the creature is covered in a gooey acid. This coating is not painful if touched and, in fact, makes the user feel comfortable. Make no mistake, the acid burns away all that it comes in contact with despite its soothing effect.

The back half of a shellage is absurd in design. Unable to be seen unless pulled out of its shell, it is solid and contains an entire face, including eyes, teeth, smelling, and hearing holes. The shellage does not use this part of its body, as it is solely for its host.


Before their eventual change, the shellage were small creatures who attached to their host, adding a small line of defense and a new point of view to their arsenal. In return for this gift, the shellage would lay its eggs into the animal. This plan of action made the host less likely to be killed by the elements and allowed the shellage to invest in a much longer lifespan than other parasites, leading to higher reproductive success rates.

When the O-rder class member, O-3, read the documentation of this being, he was enamored. He would go on to create the shellage that both fascinates, and terrifies the public to this day.

Their shells were made to resemble notail masks, and modifications enabled them to deliver more powerful senses to their host. Most notably, they no longer would seek out any part of the body. They would only wish to integrate with the face. Currently, the shellage is only recommended for notailkind, but O-3 states that a "universal" version is in the design phase.

When a shellage locates one to integrate with, typically a sleeping subject, it pushes itself into their face. Its acidic coating melts off the flesh, eyes, mouth, and nose of its host. During this fusing, which takes place over 12 hours, the host feels very little pain, and the acid's effect keeps them asleep until completion. Removal of the shellage is not recommended as their face would be reduced to "a bloody mass of holes" that will kill them without medical intervention.

Death rates among notails fusing with a shellage sit at 0.01%, but all other organics currently experience a 10% chance of death and a 30% chance of losing one or more senses instead of gaining better ones. Wildlife conservationists have already observed masked animals on certain planets. They worry that they will enter into a symbiotic relationship with the shellage if given enough time.

Once fused, the shell of the fauna acts much like a face. It can open up, eat, hear, see, and smell, all of this controlled by the host.

Unknown to the host, small eggs are laid within it, each year of life producing more spawn. These eggs will not hatch while the host is alive, and most will feel no adverse effects. Upon death, the baby shellages all hatch at once and begin consumption of the body. They grow rapidly, and by the time the corpse is unusable, they will be five inches in length.

Those who come across the body of the dead witness a horrifying sight. Clusters of faces pressing out of a ruptured body, each one jousting with the other to eat their share of the flesh. The skin moves with life, though not of the deceased.

The original shellage adult will detach, and if given food, water, and time, will make a full recovery. It may be reused after this with no ill effect.


Feral: Wild shellages still exist. These creatures are far smaller, standing only three inches in adulthood. They will attach anywhere on the host, where instead of replacing the host's senses, they would add on a new line of sight. Their spiked shells would provide a small line of defense, both from those who would eat its host and attempts from the host to remove it. Eggs would be laid under the skin, hatch, reach adulthood, and then either stay on the current host or fall off to seek a new one.


Sensory improvement: When a shellage successfully fuses with a host, it improves hearing, smelling, and sight. In the cases of those with senses already above those of their new resident, these senses will be demolished, as the shellage has no way to choose which improvements to apply selectively.


• O-3 hopes to have all notails replace their face with a shellage. Current adoption rates are low, with only around 1% of notails choosing the shellages over other masks. It appears that having one's face melted off isn't a very appealing situation.

• There are concerns on planets where shellages have become invasive. While containment and destruction efforts are working well, those who sleep outside under overhangs, a perfect environment for shellages, are at a higher risk of waking up to their face melted off and fused to the creature. Those who survive the event praise how much their life has been improved. Studies are being conducted to determine if this sentiment is caused by the interaction between the host's brain and shellage.

• Unlike many of O-3's creations, the shellages are not bio-machines. O-3 considers them "part of the family and one's self." He often refers to himself as "we" to include his shellage.

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