Blood and Jazz
Hyperfertility is a magical trait possessed by several of Ërdin’s native species, most notably true dragons, which enables the hyperfertile individual to produce viable offspring under circumstances which mundane biology would not permit. Hyperfertile mating is among the most complex and poorly-understood of all magical phenomena, and the staggering array of otherwise-insurmountable reproductive barriers that it can easily overcome has baffled legions of scientists for centuries. Circumstances in a hyperfertile mating may include one or more of the following:
- Mates are not of the hyperfertile individual’s own species
- Mates possess no gonads, or only vestigial gonads (i.e. sprites)
- Mates possess no genitalia, or genitalia that appear incompatible with those of the hyperfertile individual (i.e. gelatinous cubes mating with true dragons)
- Mates are sterile hybrids (i.e. mules, half-elves, half-orcs)
- Mates are naturally sterile due to birth defects
- Mates have been artificially sterilized
- Mates are of the same sex as the hyperfertile individual
Note that to be an example of hyperfertility, the resulting offspring must inherit traits from both parents—otherwise it is not hyperfertility, but rather is most likely parasitic or parasitoidal oviposition (such as that performed by spider eaters, xill, and certain species of wasps).
Hyperfertility has long commanded legendary status in cultures all across the planet, especially in religious art and scripture. Even in the present day, hyperfertile individuals often attract cult followings in which cultists revere the hyperfertile as a deity and are rewarded with children; the blue dragon cults of Komwë are the most notable contemporary examples.