The deserts of the world are arid and inhospitable. Water, the all-soothing foundation of life, is a scarcity, and most living things will do whatever they can to secure it for themselves. Some animals store it in fatty deposits in their bodies, while other plants draw it drop by drop from deep below the sands. And sometimes the sands themselves will play a hand in this high-stakes game of drink or die, coming alive to claim the desert’s most valuable commodity as its own. Known as Oases, these sandy souls spring up around isolated bodies of water, drawing and interweaving this life-giving essence into their bodies, becoming strong enough to stand upright and resist the harsh desert winds. Some theorize an Oasis is an evolved form of sandsprite, while others believe it’s the desert itself racing flora and fauna alike to a new source of water, but whatever their origin the coming of an Oasis can spell boon or bust for all who encounter one.
Oases are a rare occurrence, developing once in a blue moon to monopolize a given source of water- if they appeared more often, other lifeforms would simply dry up and die. They don’t demonstrate any sort of culture, speak any language or serve any but their singular purpose- to grow in size and volume of water collected. The passing of an Oasis can spell disaster for any parched patrons of the desert, as the watering hole that could have saved them from dehydration at a critical moment would be gone before they got there. Conversely, if a group is ready and able to face the lashing sands and piercing water bolts of an Oasis they can strike it dead, the creature immediately collapsing into a fresh and untainted pool of cool water- a reward more valuable than gold or enchanted tools in the right circumstances. An Oasis is rare, and in the heart of the desert they can easily end your life, or save it.