Now, that is sublime. An eye, larger than my own head, is the first thing that meets my gaze as I step closer to the putrid green water.
The eye is dull and if I didn't know better, I'd think the creature to be dead.
But I did know better, I could see the movement of the worm-mimicking tentacles at the edge of the pond, attempting to lure a meal to it's death with the promise of a tasty treat.
It's skin blends in perfectly with the algal bloom caused by the creature in question, I note as I move my camera from its perch on my hip and hold it out in front of me with no hesitation.
"You don't want to do that." Startled, I whipped my head around to find a person staring back at me.
They are... odd. All bright colours, especially where they shouldn't be.
Red hair, like paint, and matching albeit-slightly-darker-in-hue glasses that kept falling down their nose at the angle they were looking down at me from.
Bitten short nails dig into the tree branch on which they perch.
"It doesn't like bright lights, and it's far bigger than you think it is."
"... Miragal can't grow beyond a maximum of 40% of the body of water they reside in-"
"Exactly," The stranger's expression finally changes from neutral, giving me a knowing grin, "The pools here are notoriously famous for being incredibly deep.
The result of Kadanisian mining tunnels being filled in by the rain, some have been recorded at around 70ft long."
I didn't need to look in a mirror to know all the colour had drained out of my face. Maybe that's where the red on their clothes comes from, other individual's mortification.
The panic doesn't decrease when a distressing thought crossed my mind.
"Are you talking about the tunnels or the Miragal?"
They did not elaborate.
They just began kicking their legs back and forth, their feet making a thump as they rhythmically hit the bark of the tree. I hear a sound in the distance, a rather nasty sounding croak.
"Get up here! We're just in time for the show!"
I didn't hesitate, although I did stumble making my way to the other side of the tree,
setting myself on an adjacent branch just in time to see an animal that was clearly a descendent of a toad hop it's way over to the tunnel pool, enticed by the worms.
I watched in a mixture of morbid curiosity and twisted awe as the not-toad went for the bait.
The Miragal's reaction was instantaneous.
The Miragal lifted it's colossal head out of it's hiding place, it's bulbous eyes dripping with greed. The not-toad tries it's luck at getting away, only for the Miragal's head to follow it.
Miragal were not meant to be able to leave the water but this one was so large, it's shape fitting the cylindrical tunnel, that it's body acted as a neck it otherwise wouldn't have.
This gave it the ability to lift itself out of the water and chase it's prey a quite impressive distance.
I turned to my unwitting companion, although I couldn't help but feel that description applies more to me than them, in mute horror.
"Welcome to Kadanis, the home of unfortunate landscape and wildlife combinations."