Now here is what I don't understand: why would anybody want to collect a living thing?
Living things NEED. Living things WANT. Living things REQUIRE. They ask for food. They make a mess. They are writhing, squirming things that don't serve any purpose beyond that which they make for themselves.
Qadim keeps referring to the skritt that work in the forge as my "collection," but I despise the word. I do not own these creatures—I employ them! They are here of their own volition, some refugees from the destruction of Lion's Arch, some mere travelers referred here by others no longer in my employ.
Skritt are, naturally, smarter in large groups, so I have been fortunate that they find collective value in working within the forge. The knowledge they gain here is of tremendous use to their scratches, as the Mystic Forge is in many ways a receptacle for items found all over the world. No matter where they come from, they will one day find their way down here.
But even though they dot the landscape of my domain, they are not here for display. They work, and they work hard! The mountains of sorted items parsed from those dropped in by the world above are a testament to their fastidiousness, and I would truly be at a loss without their help. Qadim, on the other hand, views living creatures as curiosities—things to be placed in a glass case and shown to passersby.
Speaking of which, I have no idea to whom he's showing off his menagerie. Is there some djinn cabal I'm unaware of that takes pleasure in the collective suffering of living things? More likely that wretched fire djinn is simply imprisoning these creatures for his own amusement.
The items I collect have historical relevance and value. Qadim's collection will grow old and die, yet mine will live forever.
Well, I suppose that's not entirely true. Qadim's collection SHOULD be growing old and dying, but for some reason I cannot ascertain, it is not. The lifespans of his little subjects seem to have been altered, perhaps due to the strange nature of time within his domain, perhaps through some other magical influence. I've no idea. What I DO know is that for his captives, dying of old age is not the escape it used to be.