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The Goldenhorn, high on the peak...
|Alternate Names/Spellings||Goldenhorn, Zlatorog|
|Appearance||A golden-horned bovid...|
The Goldhorn is a creature with origins in Slavic mythology, legend and folklore. In particular, accounts of its existence first arise in the mythology, legend and folklore of Slovenia (as written in the 43rd edition of the Laibacher Zeitung by one Karel Dežman, in 1868).
The Goldhorn was said to have some relation, genetically, to both the chamois and the steinbock. As such, some have short, humble horns (like the chamois), while others have great overarching horns (like the steinbock).
Regardless, the creature is quite distinguished from its cousins by the fact that its horns are composed of solid gold.
Goldhorns are very similar in temperament to any other species of mountain goat. They have similar eating habits, similar territorial preferences, similar mating habits, similar offspring rearing habits and the like.
However, when it is injured, such that blood is drawn, it does not merely hide away to tend its wounds, or try to escape its attacker, as its cousins might.
Rather, it tries to drag out a trail of its blood along the ground, so that it is able to make use of its supernatural powers, in defense of itself and its territory.
The Goldhorn's most obvious supernatural feature is the presence of solid gold horns. Its headbutt and goring are naturally more powerful and more painful than attacks by ordinary horns.
Some also claim that it has power to scent certain gold-loving species, such as Dwarves, to perceive a potential threat to its golden horns.
Though, its most impressive capability, by far, is not revealed until such time as it receives an injury that manages to draw blood from the defending Goldhorn.
In such case, it will attempt to leave a trail of its own blood, within which will grow a patch of blood-red flowers. Whether or not any other species can safely partake of the flowers is unknown, but if the Goldhorn manages to eat of the sanguine-colored blooms, they will not only be healed of the former injury, but will gain extraordinary strength, durability and stamina with which to drive the enemy away.
Some even believe that Goldhorns use this trick in old age or in the event of sickness, to ward off a painful and untimely death.
Goldhorns are powerful, sturdy creatures, but the first and foremost threat to their well-being is naturally the presence of its golden horns. These horns often attract the eye of greedy humanoid species, who wish to turn a profit from the life of unsuspecting animals.
Worse yet, their blood possesses powerful magical properties, which, again, attracts unwanted attention from sentient humanoid species seeking to profit from the creature's natural defenses (for themselves or to market to others). While the Goldhorn is about as sturdy as any other of its cousins, with no obvious outright weaknesses, its preternatural horns and blood are highly valued (and targeted) among mythical commodities.