The World of Darken
This entry refers to the master denizens of the Frost-Marsh. There are other spiderfolk and spider-kin throughout the world, but they are not discussed here. The spiderfolk of the Frost-Marsh are generally of a kind. They all resemble a version of a tarantula. However, they average about the size of a large dog. At rest leg span is about six feet, twelve fully extended. They are venomous once they enter adulthood, and can all generate silk, except for the extremely old. Average lifespan is around three hundred years, though a few rare individuals have lived for five hundred. Frost-Spiders have a society of their own, and have cultivated the worship from the kobolds not for self aggrandizement, but for self preservation. Females lay eggs only once in their lives. These egg-sacs may contain up to a thousand eggs, but usually less than half survive to hatching. Fewer than one-in-ten are female, and they tend to compete for territory, sometimes fatally. And that does not even take into account predation on the hatchlings, which are usually the size of gold marks. That’s where the kobolds come in. Their worship includes protection of the egg-sacs from natural predators, scouting of territories for the females,and clearing of old webbing. This last proves to be a bonus for the kobolds as the webbing has a tensile strength akin to forged steel. Single strands can be used to saw through ironwood, and even used to shape that wood into useful tools, weapons, and armor plates. The threads are then used to bind these plates together into suits of armor that provide the protection of medium armor, but feel like light armor. Since the ironwood trees these suits are made of are scarce within the Frost-Marsh, they are only made for the egg-sac guardians. However, many of the hunters wear clothing woven of spidersilk, which provides the equivalent of light armor. Kobold shields are shaped pieces of regular wood wrapped densely with spidersilk. And kobold bows use spidersilk strings which allows them to double as saws, and even weapons in the hands of skilled users. The relationship between the kobolds and the Frost-Spiders is very symbiotic.