Thursday, June 24, 2010
Ravania is not just home to races of humans and demi-humans. There are other races that also fill the far-ranging expanses of the eternally frozen land. Most of these other folk exist in relatively small numbers, compared to the major peoples of Ravania. They form strongholds or small territorial lands, which though known are seldom recognized by the more civilized folk. There are those, however, who keep themselves to the shadows and live within or around the common folk of the land. Still others, namely the Druug, have formed a vast horde, challenging that of the Tajads made up of a coalition of humanoid species and led by the dread Ravanian ogres known as Huraags.
The Druug are a collection of humanoids of indistinct breed. After generations of tribal conquest back and forth and subsequent interbreeding and inbreeding, the Druug can no longer claim any one species of humanoid as kin. Druug range in appearance from hulking hairy brutes to pale or mottled being of stringy muscle. The one common thing they all share is a savagery and malice that drives them to constant raiding, warfare and pillaging.
Most races of Ravania avoid the Druug as best they can, but the Tajads, living on the same open range, often come in conflict with them. It is a well accepted fact in all of Ravania that, if not for the Druug, the Tajads would have already swept west and ravaged the more civilized regions of the land.
The mysterious Kenku are a race regarded with suspicion and fear by most of Ravania. The frozen empire sports many a tale of the shady exploits of these odd crow-men. Sneaky and cunning, the creatures haunt nearly every corner of Ravania, even the urban sprawls of the Ravnik cities and the wild spaces east of the Deep Forest and the eastern expanses of the Yalskawald. It is said that the Kenku are ancient among the races of the Ravania and hold private secrets of the land that no other mortal can dare imagine. Of course there is no way for any man to know for certain.
What is true and well known is that the Kenku are perfectly happy carrying any any manner of dark misdeed for the right price or at their cryptic whims. Kidnappings, murders, espionage, even conspiracy are all within the scope of any Kenku's bag of tricks. Given the right contacts, and they have endless numbers of them, a Kenku can network himself into any position and acquire any piece of information.
As the elves are graceful and full of life, the Sibhir are lewd and full of wickedness. In their glacial fortress, they worship their patron goddess Loveathir and pay her homage by conjuring all manner of great evils and lavishing in the vile natures. They far east of the Great Wastes are theirs and any creature setting foot within their realm is subject to their merciless whims.
The Sibhir are elves, but they are greatly changed since falling from the light. Skin tones usually run a more earthy tone, grey and a luminous white being common. Sibhir tend to wear their hair long but ornately dressed, the silky strands being white, silver, sometimes even golden in color. Their shifting eyes seem to favor the colors of ice. The men of Ravania have few dealings with the Sibhir, being far enough away to escape their meddling, but in the east, the Tajads and the Druug do feel their icy touch. Often, it is through these savage hordes that the Sibhir extend their reach to other parts of the land.
In many lands, ogres are a wilderness menace and the denizens of dungeons deep, seldom encountered but greatly feared. In Ravania, ogres are frequent and range over a territory as vast as the empire itself. They form savage bands, raiding and pillaging villages and caravans as well as engaging in all other manner of banditry. But, that is not the limit of their villainy.
The ogres of Ravania are a diverse species ranging from common ogres to huge breeds with mixed giant heritage called Huraag. They are also known to to breed with nearly anything whether it will have them or not, which has produced all manner of fowl offshoots and half-breeds. These crossbred monstrosities have been the source of many legendary creatures throughout the history of Ravania. Such creatures often live as solitary outcasts but occasionally exceptional examples may take on the role of chieftain of a band or sometimes form several bands into tribe-like groups.
Relatives of the common goblin, the Sverdlinka are a vile and hardy species which are uniquely adapted to the harsh climates of Ravania. Sverlinka are not purely humanoid, carrying some fey blood but of the blackest sort, making them crafty and intelligent.
Sverlinka are masters of trap and trick and can be found in all locations across the Ravanian expanses. Common tricks include baby snatching, poisoning of wells, tainting of crops and livestock, murder, larceny, even extortion, making them one of the most frequently encountered and most reviled races in all the land.