Art by, Chimerii
Danger Level: High
Commonly Infects: Physically fragile and / or typically loud beings.
Attack Method: Bombards its surroundings with an ear-splitting audio attack. Will occasionally attack with claws and other physical weapons.
Summary: Gaining strength from the sound around them, crocottas are easy to injure, but hard to spot monsters that can capture sound, store it, and release it all in a single, devastating attack. Though they rarely dish out physical attacks unless attacked first, crocottas still manage to be ferocious clockworks that one should take care to avoid.
Original Creator: Chimerii
The most noticeable trait one might notice when first infected is a sudden weakness in the body, and an aversion to both loud sounds, and anything that could be considered remotely sharp.
Soon, the body's skin and other organs will start breaking down, becoming terribly fragile, like paper. The skeletal structure of the infected also tends to shift to being rather hunched-over, or even fully quadrupedal.
The body of a crocotta tends to be an extremely fragile one at this stage, and even just a poke to the skin could end up tearing through their body. Loud sounds have even been reported to dissolve their body. The skeletal structure's strength remains mostly unaffected, but can be observed to be a bit weaker than usual. Regardless, the infected's overall endurance at this stage makes it extremely easy to kill before it starts producing clockwork slime.
The slime acts as a shield to a crocotta's fragile body. While it is still very easy to cut through or smash the clockwork down, and of course, easy to burn, the slime at least prevents it from dying due to walking into a tree branch or something of that manner.
More notably, the slime has special properties regarding light and sound. The slime is reflective and acts almost like an authentic mirror, which lets a crocotta blend into its surroundings by some of the colors and shapes around it. Despite this, seeing the sky being reflected back on a clockwork-shaped being on the ground, or something of that matter, is a clear sign of a crocotta. This reflective slime also tends to drip over the infected's eyes, limiting eyesight by extremely large amounts.
The slime's properties regarding sound tend to be much more infamous, providing a crocotta complete immunity to loud sounds or certain frequencies. It also grants the clockwork the ability to absorb the sound around it, and preserve its amplitude perfectly to be used as a weapon for later use through currently unknown means.
A crocotta tends to have no other weapon aside from its sound. With a body too fragile to dish out many physical attacks, the strain has evolved to sacrifice a useless lower jaw and turn it into a strange lump of skin, one with the power to manipulate the frequencies of all the sound it has absorbed in the past.
With the power to absorb the sound around it, keep it at the same volume as it once was, and manipulate the frequencies of said sound, a crocotta can create a devastating, ear-splitting attack when it finally decides to release all of that sound. It can easily smash glass, but can also crumble far sturdier things, such as concrete, if enough sound had been stored up before the attack.
The sound a crocotta has is also used to overcome its challenges with sight. With the power to easily alter frequencies, the clockwork instead gets around using echolocation, listening for its own sound waves to navigate its environment, and to seek out more people to kill and infect.
The newly infected try to find quiet places as the virus spreads throughout their body, as at this stage, the person does not yet have enough slime to sustain sound, as their skin becomes extremely fragile first. They will attempt to isolate themselves in forests, abandoned areas, or anywhere with a lack of sound.
As the infection spreads and the infected creates more slime, they will venture out to louder areas, as they will start to develop an attraction from anything loud, going from fearing sound to craving it within a matter of days.
Crocottas will hunt out anything with sound, and absorb that sound into themselves to become stronger. Raiding concerts is a common and unfortunate occurrence for a number of reasons. They also tend to love cities in general, as well as parties.
They often do not attack until they have sufficiently gathered up enough sound to do so, typically enough to be compared to two or more loud concerts. Until then, they will slink around in the shadows, trying not to be seen. Sound gives them a confidence boost, as they are mostly unable to attack without it.
When a crocotta has enough sound, they cannot contain it anymore and tend to let it out all in one burst. Depending on how developed the crocotta's jaw is, this attack has the ability to topple small buildings and damage larger ones at max power.
A crocotta's attacks on organic life thankfully have less effect, but still have the ability to shatter bones and other sturdy organs if in close enough proximity to an attack. Others reports have been made of deafness and tinnitus among victims of the clockwork.
If a crocotta is being attacked, they will release what sound they have as a defense mechanism before resorting to attacking with their claws. They will not run away until all attackers have been killed, or at the very least, reduced to a state where they are silent. Bringing people who cannot physically speak is recommended for fighting a crocotta, as they will take less aggressive interest in something without sound. Due to their reliance on echolocation to see, moving at quick speeds and frequent quick turns is another helpful way to take down this clockwork.
Parrot: Parrot crocottas cannot manipulate volume or frequency, but can repeat sounds it heard multiple times over, even from a very long time ago. They are completely aggressive and will mindlessly attack people at all times, often while repeating the screaming of people it has heard in the past. This screaming tends to attract concerned bystanders, who will then be killed as well. Its lower jaw, typically just used to alter frequencies, instead is physically strong and used to bite things with.
Singer: In the rare occurrences where an aquatic-going person is infected, their body will often morph to fit the shape of a dolphin, albeit often a very deformed one. A crocotta's slime is completely useless within water, so as they have no protection from sound, they often seek out silent places instead. These underwater crocottas are often nicknamed singers due to their silence and dolphin-like appearance, and some believe them to be an actual effigy of the Singer. However, there has been no religious confirmation of this.
Audio Playback: Nearly all crocottas possess the ability to keep sound in a constant loop, and are able to replay this sound while manipulating both its frequency at will. The sheer volume of their attacks, combined with their modified frequencies, leads to the ability to crumble even sturdy materials.
• Crocotta slime frequently drips off the clockwork while it moves. This slime is like a liquid mirror, and as a result, it is sometimes sold off to unsuspecting customers as "exotic glass". This practice has been banned.
• The parrot crocottas strain has been around for a particularly long time have been captured by scientists as a playback for audio history or for use in figuring out the last moments of a recently destroyed area.
• While singer crocottas are extremely rare, a staggeringly large percentage of those that exist are believed to be blessed by the Singer. Some of these anomalous beings are unknown as to whether they had been blessed before or after their infection, leading to some conspiracies and theories that crocottas were created by the Singer itself. These trends of being blessed/an anomaly are not seen in other types of crocotta, though some argue that it's possible that the crocotta's sound storing skill might be anomalous in itself.