|Lifespan||Cannot die of old age|
|Locomotion||Depends upon maturity level|
|Suborder||Xenocaudata (Somarinoa, 2014)|
|Genus||Sload (Somarinoa, 2014)|
Sloads are hulking, slug-like humanoid amphibians indigenous to the semi-submerged continent of Thras on the planet Nirn. They are notable for their mastery over necromancy as well as their ability to operate airships.
Being amphibians, their species goes through a metamorphosis-based life cycle, though unlike most other amphibians theirs involves several stages of growth and development, with each one appearing vastly different from the last until they finally mature into their humanoid form, complete with arms, legs, a torso and a head, as one would normally expect to find. Sloads are hermaphroditic in their youth, but later will reabsorb their reproductive organs as adults. There is no known occurrence of interfertility between a Sload and any of the races of men and mer.
Sload larvae begin life as small, amorphous grubs, but by the time they reach adolescence they will have transformed into a soft-bodied, octopus-like organisms that are easily blinded by sunlight (thereby leading researchers to make the natural assumption that they are likely nocturnal at this stage of life). Similar to reptiles, a Sload will keep growing throughout its life, but they do not seem to have an actual lifespan to speak of in terms of any sort of life expectancy limit. Some of the most ancient Sloads have in fact grown to such massive proportions that they will simply collapse under their own weight if they are not in water to provide them with ample buoyancy.
Although a Sload can think quickly, they tend to prefer to take careful and deliberate actions. They move and act slowly and cautiously in tandem with this, and seem unwilling to make swift decisions for any reason. Sloads are not what one might consider brave: There is no word in their language for "adventure", instead the closest equivalent is believed to mean "tragic disaster". Because of this, their mythical heroes have been individuals who take slow and deliberate actions, consulting with wiser Sload and considering all actions before acting in order to succeed. In rivalry of this, their villains almost always fail due to taking quick action.
Most of the intelligent inhabitants of Nirn view the Sload as morally repugnant, as every individual that has thus been encountered has proven themselves to be grasping, callous, unscupulous and a self-loving schemer. However, one must understand that Sload do not experience emotions that would be familiar to a Human or similar race, though they do have great skill in diplomacy and as actors produce gross, exaggerated parodies of Human behavior. Blasphemy, theft, torture, kidnapping, murder and genocide are all normal actions to a Sload, and they will proceed to break others' laws should they calculate it to be in their own best interest. They excel as merchants and smuggling entrepreneurs, possibly due to their significant greediness.
The way of the trick seems to be a Sload's primary aspect, and while they have no perception of honor, friendship or loyalty as Humans would see it, they will still share a surprisingly cheerful affinity for those whom defeat them or successfully trick them in any of the Sload's endeavors.
Almost nothing is known about Sload history as no expeditions have ever ventured man or mer to the semi-submerged continent of Thras, which the Sload call home. Unfortunately, this lack of any real knowledge is greatly compounded by the fact that only one Sload has been known to read and write, N'Gasta, and no other literature regarding their history is known to have ever been recorded, even for themselves.
For millennia, they terrorized the Altmer, conjuring sea monsters along the coasts and laying siege to Skywatch.
By the time the Redguards migrated to Tamriel in 1E 808, they brought a tradition of burying their criminals on islands off their shore to prevent their evil spirits from disturbing the living. Masters at necromancy, the Sload saw and took advantage of this by using the graveyards as laboratories. While the Redguard pushed against them, reports of Sload living off the coasts surfaced and thrived as rumors well into the Third Era.
Unequivocally, the deadliest attack against mainland Tamriel ever made by the Sload was the Thrassian Plague, which succeeded in decimating Tamriel's population in 1E 2260. This plague led to the founding of the All Flags Navy in 1E 2200, though obviously it failed within sixty years.
For some reason, they consider the Altmer Mannimarco, also known as the King of Worms, as their hero. When Mannimarco ceased troubling Tamriel (presumably due to his death), the Sload fell silent for at least the following 30 years.
- The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard (First appearance)