Wednesday, May 13, 2009
(Português Reverse Baboon)
In a not-so-distant future, the skeletons of skyscrapers sway above the herds of feral poodles roaming the desolate streets. They pause; ears flatten…then break into a mad dash in all directions as the Balu Paratras drops from above. The rough paws crunch through the grit, then skid to a halt before melting into the sidewalk. Crouched above its prey, the acid begins to dissolve the dog as the Paratras detracts its stomach and lifts the remains to complete the digestion.
Roughly the size of an elephant seal, The Paratras has a unique reverse digestive system similar to that of a starfish. By releasing stomach acid from its trailing third leg, it breaks down its prey before ingesting it through its front-facing anus.
To protect its organ sack, the Paratras has a large reverse sternum down its back. This bone has also been labeled as a crude skull because of the location of the eye sockets, yet the ganglion tube housing the nervous system of the animal resides down its neck, which is located along the base of the front anus. Similar to an owl, the Paratras’s complex neck allows for a 270-degree rotation in both directions, which is often used to dissemble its prey. Its eyes, attached along facing muscle flaps towards the crest of the sternum, are equally as flexible. This allows for 360-degree vision (excluding the blind ‘Achilles heel’ located between the eyes) along with the mobility to travel comfortably in both directions.
Commonplace in the jungles of the urban sprawl, these creatures can be found nesting high up in the abandoned steel girders. They have the agility of the human hand, and use their webbed front clubs like stingrays when gliding down to find food in the evenings. They stand as man’s last remaining fingerprint. They are the lions of the graveyard city, both the marvel and terror of its remaining inhabitants.