"Sometimes I wonder why I put up with all this nonsense from that beast. It bites, it kicks, it tries to spear me with its horns. But then it wakes me in the middle of the night to flee from lava, runs over highwaymen, scares off most predators, and intimidates the innkeeper to go down with the stable price. So, all things considered, having a wempon is like have a best friend, albeit a really grumpy one."
— Martel, traveller
Being sent to herd the wempons is among the least favourite jobs for youngsters; the beasties will push them around and be hard to look after. On the other hand, it's a good way to become friends with one that will be a loyal mount later.
"Strange to see how friendly wempons are with children, almost like bug fairies. Even stranger to see how vain they can be - once you get the holiday dress on them, they want to keep it, and the paint, too. Silly creatures."
These beasts were among the first creatures I stuck with when I began developing Genius Loci, and their design has never changed much. My main inspirations were anteaters, watussi cattle, and pangolins, but there's a bit of elephant and camel in it too, the latter mainly in their behaviour. I often put them in paintings because I imagine them to be ideal travelling companions, even if I made them sound pretty disagreeable. There are also other riding animals in development; for example, riding birds, seen in the salt flats landscape of the "Introducing Genius Loci" entry.