Documents of Tabat: Pests of Tabat

What are the documents of Tabat? In an early version of the book, I had a number of interstitial pieces, each a document produced by the city: playbills, advertisements, guide book entries. They had to be cut but I kept them for this purpose. I'll release them at the end of April in e-book form; careful readers will find clues to some aspects of Beasts of Tabat in them. -Cat

What are the documents of Tabat? In an early version of the book, I had a number of interstitial pieces, each a document produced by the city: playbills, advertisements, guide book entries. They had to be cut but I kept them for this purpose. I’ll release them at the end of April in e-book form; careful readers will find clues to some aspects of Beasts of Tabat in them. -Cat


An Instructive Listing of the Pests of Tabat, being Pamphlet #2 of the fifth series of “A Visitor’s Guide to Tabat,” Spinner Press, author unknown.

The newcomer to Tabat will find the pests they are accustomed to: fleas, lice, and rats are no strangers to the city. But several creatures indigenous to the area may cause the unwary traveler distress.

In late summer nights, the gold and orange wings of phoenix moths will be visible in their mating swarms. Despite the beauty of the phenomenon, the creatures are destroyed whenever possible, for the flames created when they deposit their eggs and immolate themselves in order to harden the casings can lead to larger fires.

Marsh flies are prevalent on the city’s eastern side when the wind is from that quarter. The fierce bites of these insects have been known to drive even the most placid creature to the brink of madness. Citronella and other scented candles and lamp oils are the most popular remedy for these creatures, along with bed netting in the summer months.

Parasitic Fairies have, for the most part, been eradicated, but clusters of the minute Fairies known as slavemakers still exist in the farmlands. While they rarely if ever make their way into the city, those traveling in the areas directly around Tabat should be aware of the danger they pose.

Mandrakes are neither animal nor Beast, but rather a plantlike intelligence found only on this continent and capable of ambulation in their early stages. Mandrakes kill larger mammals, using the corpse as a plant in which to root themselves and propagate and are, like parasitic Fairies, only a danger to those venturing outside the main city.

Due to Tabat’s damp weather, a myriad of molds thrive in untended corners. Scarlet mold, toxic to animal and human, may appear and is invariably accompanied by black mold worms, whose bite produces severe hallucinations.

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About Cat Rambo

I am a science fiction and fantasy writer and editor. My three collections of short stories are THE SURGEON'S TALE AND OTHER STORIES (with Jeff VanderMeer), EYES LIKE SKY AND COAL AND MOONLIGHT, and NEAR + FAR (forthcoming this September).
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