Dimensional fauna: the brainworm
Size: Very Small (2-4 cm)
Psi: minimal to none in natural state; medium (limited telepathic transmission) in altered
Description: One of the most peculiar and downright useful creatures encountered and brought back to Zhontaar by dimensional explorers is the so-called Metadan “brainworm.” These leechlike organisms from the demiplane of Metadata feed on Pure Information, and have been genetically manipulated by Zhontaari wizards to a state of psi-symbiotic attachment with a human or humanoid. Once introduced into the host’s cranium (via the ear canal or nasal passage), the brainworm attaches itself to part of the brain and enables the host to tap into the information as the worm digests it over time. (Time of digestion ranges from several days to several weeks, depending on the size and intensity of the meal.) Once the information is fully digested, the worm detaches and departs from the host.
By strictly regulating the amount and type of information absorbed by the brainworm, the skilled wizard may temporarily implant nearly any kind of knowledge in the host’s mind — exotic languages, customs, skills, and more. This has made the brainworm incredibly popular among the Operations Division of the Archivists’ Guild and other well-equipped exploratory groups.
Critics of the brainworms’ use suggest that the creature could be put to nefarious purposes, such as harvesting information, causing severe and irrevocable mental trauma, or programming its host to perform involuntary actions; however, such claims have yet to be verified.