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Anterk

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"I am really getting tired of these giant deer everywhere!"
―A drug dealer commenting on the Anterks

An Anterk is a large mutated deer commonly found on America's East Coast. Due to the fact that deer were populous creatures before the Great War, it is no surprise that many East Coast areas today are heavily populated with Anterks, especially Maryland. Anterks sometimes gather in great numbers, becoming a nuisance for nearby settlements.

Origins

Before the war, almost every area of the earth held some type of deer, a large hoofed mammal with horned males. Due to the deer's lack of natural predators in urban and suburban areas where they had been driven out and its semi-protected status under American state law, the deer rapidly grew to become an infestation of sorts. Deer would be seen during the daylight hours, which was supposed to not happen, and they would be out in such numbers that many people driving suffered the risk of running into one, which would deal out much harm to themselves and their property. They were referred to as "hoofed rats" by some people who constantly had to deal with the pesky creatures. When the Great War broke out, many deer died as a result of the nuclear bombing. Those who did not, however, mutated into the Anterk, in order to take on its new, uncertain environment.

Features

The Anterk is similar to a deer in basic bodily shape. However, it bears several noticeable differences in bodily structure and in its habits. The most noticeable difference, perhaps, is the Anterk's horn mutation. Male deer were possessed of large antlers, perfect for the animal to fight and gore enemies with, but the Anterk's horns were different. They grew much larger, heavier, harder, and deadlier in size. The Anterk's horns, unlike regular deer, grew straight into another new feature for the Anterk: that of a large plate of bone on its forehead. This plate of bone provides a thick protective shield to the Anterk's skull. As a result of this and of the creature's antlers, the Anterk's neck muscles grew much larger and stronger in order to enable the creature to support the weight of its head. Likewise, in order to balance the strain on the Anterk's neck, the rest of the Anterk's body became large and heavily muscled, turning the Anterk into a very large quadrupedal creature.

Another reason for the Anterk's increased neck growth and thus its total muscle mass growth may be attributed to its change in diet. In the wasteland, plants no longer can provide a viable source of food, and so the Anterk must turn to other sources for sustenance. Unsurprisingly, this source proved to be meat. The Anterk became a predatory creature. Due to its time spent eating meat, the Anterk's mouth became sharp-toothed, and thus the Anterk's jaws became larger to accommodate its larger teeth. Anterks typically feed off of many different types of irradiated insects or animals and may on occasion eat humans. They are typically found hunting in packs, although others may hunt alone. Be warned: though a skilled fighter can easily kill an Anterk, an Anterk pack can provide a serious challenge to a Wasteland Wanderer. Anterk males are even more dangerous, due to their larger bodies, their horns, and their more aggressive nature. However, Anterk mothers with their children are without a doubt the most dangerous variant and are to be avoided whenever possible, as Anterk mothers are extremely protective of their children.

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