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The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-11 10:08 AM
Well, I posted it as is becuase I will be linking to it additional subs. Otherwise, this peice would rapidly outstrip my overlong Alun submission in size. Its configured both as scroll and codex for this reason. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-14 11:16 AM

Rephatian Castes:



The inherent savagery of the Rephatians is barely held in check by a rigidly structured Caste system, strongly tied to the 'breed' of Rephatians.


Food Caste



This caste consist of the most heavily modified of the various Rephatians. In most cases they have been formed to provide analogs of various domestic animals as food and beasts of burden. They are generally the least intelligent of the Rephatians.



Worker Caste



This caste consists of Rephatians greatly modified to provide more efficient forms of labour. They are divided primarily into two sub-groups - Artisan and Labourer. The Artisans are more subtly modified from the Labourers. Labourers have had their size and strength adjusted to serve different roles. Strongly imprinted with the desire to serve their betters, they show little independance.



Warrior Caste



The Warrior Caste consists of those Rephatians modified to provide advantages at war and in the Great Game. Most notable of the Warrior caste are the Tshagara - referred to by non-Rephatians as the 'Shark Warriors', though other types exist. This group has perhaps the greatest variation between the Six Nations of Rephatia. Warrior Caste prey on both Food and Worker caste, though in the case of the latter, only in emergency.



Noble Caste



The Noble Caste is by and large pure-blood human, with little induced changes. Eugenics has been exercised to optimize their form, but no magic has been used to adjust this group en masse. There are individual clans which may have introduced some changes, but this is not typical. This caste includes virtually all of the political types and are all land-owners. Nobles exploit and occasionally prey on all of the lower castes, but usually only prey on Warrior Caste on rare occasions, such as after a battle or during the the Feast of the Great Game.



All but the most powerful of the Rephatian spellcasters are of this Caste.



Transcendant Caste



Mostly unknown except as rumors to the lower castes, this caste represents the height of Rephatian power. Unlike the Noble caste, these rare individuals have been adjusted to provide greater spiritual or magical power. Some have adopted truly strange and fearsome forms. This group preys on all others - including itself - but Nobels and fellow Trancendants only via subterfuge.

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The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-14 11:24 AM
Updated: Added Scroll for Castes. When more scrolls added, will add Table of Contents. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-15 02:49 PM

Rephatian Society



As already detailed, the dominate theme of Rephatian Society is their rigid caste system along with the institution of Cannibalism.



Within the Castes, Rephatian society is quite egalitarian. Gender is not considered a signficant determination of ones role within a caste. This is largely due to the fact that most of the 'breeds' are already specialized and that further specialization on gender lines is unnecessary. In the Food caste, all are eaten. In the Worker caste, all are employed. In the Warrior Caste, all fight.



Most of the Castes include numerous 'breeds' of Rephatians, each specialized for particular roles. Interestingly enough, all breeds can interbreed with each other, and with normal humans, assuming in some cases the physical differences can be addressed. As such none represent separate species, much the same way dogs have radically different breeds within the species.



Government



The Rephatians are organized into six distinct nations, each with feudal structures and headed by an elected 'Monarch' drawn from the highest ranking nobles. Analogs for most noble titles - Duke, Count, Baron, etc, exist along with an established knighthood. This knighthood practices a code which mirrors the Rephatian society as a whole - adherence to authority and the subjugation of the weak.



All members of government, no matter the level, are drawn from members of the Noble (or Transcendant) Caste.



Justice System



The term justice only really applies on matters within the same caste. The lower castes have no recourse when wronged by their superiors, and those accused of wronging their superiors are dealt with very harshly. In all cases, law is carefully codified including the relationship between the castes. Cases are heard by judges drawn from the noble caste with the exeception of issues between Food caste members. Members of this caste are little more intelligent then animals, so legal matters are generally beyond them.



When both parties are of the same caste, trial-by-combat is common and usually to the death. Selection of means of judgment is quite open, and whatever both parties will agree to is generally allowed, though combat is by far the most popular. These are often fought by lower caste proxies. This is true for both criminal and civil cases, with the losing proxy provided to the winning party as part of the judgment. Sentences typicaly involve fines, amputations, mutiliations or other corporal punishments. Typical sentences are eye for an eye type. Imprisonment is unheard of. If sentenced to execution, the body of the executed criminal is provided to the wronged party.



Diet Although now with a well developed agriculture, with wheat-like cereals and many odd vegetables, Cannibalism is firmly rooted in their culture. This is almost exclusively targeting the Food caste - higher level cannibalism restricted to post-battle, emergency or religious ritual.



Interestingly enough, on the odd times when trade between Rephatia and other cultures occurs, food items never seem to be a commodity they are interested in importing.



Arts



Apart from war, one of the major activities of the Noble caste is the pursuit of the arts. Drama, music and visual arts play a strong part in Rephatian society, although the subject matter is often grim and repulsive to non-rephatians. Some Workers are employed in the creation of 'art' though not in a creative mode. Most Rephatian instruments are constructed from bone.

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The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-15 03:33 PM
And I hope the recent additions have helped clarify. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-15 08:11 AM
Well, perhaps the word 'exploited' would have been more appropriate. In general, the Food caste serves that role, but in a pinch, any member of the lower castes can be 'cast' :) into that role.
Hunting rarely would occur - it is either the organized 'processing' of the poor Food Caste members, or the occasional slaughter of misbehaving mid-classers. Generally the non-food castes have their roles and to casually treat them as food would indeed threaten the stability of the society. "What happened to the Blacksmith?" "Oh sorry, was a little peckish.."

One piece which is absent or poorly mentioned is the level of subserviance bred into the system. The Food caste and to a lesser degree the Worker caste have had much of their independence bred out. The higher classes are more independant as needed for their role and have strong investments in the current system.

Between nations, well, that is going to be the subject of another scroll soon. In short, to address some of these concerns, warfare between the various divisions of the Rephatians is very formalized - the Great Game plays a major role in settling disagreements (yes, still another entry to add :) ) Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-10-10 09:10 AM
Glad you liked it and thanks for the bump! Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-10-29 03:59 PM

Cultural Details



Language



The Rephatians diverged from most other branches of humanity several millennia ago and their language has evolved in isolation. It is quite sophisticated with a very large vocabulary. Their writing system is a form of cuneiform.



Religion



Although their society is largely secular in nature, they have a pantheon of many bloodthirsty gods. As in their society, their religion emphasizes an unforgiving hierarchy. Interestingly enough, reincarnation plays a part, with the suggestion that to live well may allow one to be borne into a higher Caste next time around. Concepts of the circle of life are common themes within their religion. Human sacrifices and bloody feasts mark their frequent 'holy' days.



Magic



They are accomplished magicians with their greatest focus on the manipulation of life, both flora and fauna. Few areas of magic are unexplored by them, and numerous items and locations of power have been constructed. The Trancendants form the greatest of the spellcasters, forms manipulated to better channel and control the magic.



Ethos & Beliefs



Might makes right is the primary ethos of the Rephatians. The weak are to be exploited, and sentiment is a weakness. With the way they treat their own people, it is easy to imagine how they deal with non-rephatians. They believe they have dominion over the world and intend to collect, and to stage a rematch against the Giants of Stoneholt.



Burial Customs



The Rephatians burial customs vary widely from nation to nation and will often vary from what would seem obvious. Death by disease or poison is of course handled differently then death by accident or war. In cases where the corpse could be dangerous, it is generally burned, fed to Devourers or thrown into rivers. Unless the death is planned, the corpse is rarely consumed by fellow Caste members.

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The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
valadaar's comment on 2007-10-29 04:05 PM
Updated: Added some more cultural details.. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
Demagogue's comment on 2007-05-11 12:29 AM
I'll vote on this when it is more complete, but so far I like it. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
Demagogue's comment on 2007-05-15 12:39 AM
I just wanted to give you encouragement and hold my vote at the same time. The format's fine. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
Demagogue's comment on 2007-05-15 12:59 AM
Ok, I still like the sub, and the extra detail you have given it is good, the reasons are plausible and the solution the residents find to the food problem is downright creepy. My favorite caste is the transcendents, I like the idea of shadowy "superbeings" that exist in this savage society.
My question revolves around your use of the word "prey" for referring to the caste's aquisition of food. It seems to imply that the upper classes hunt the lower classes, instead of a more organised system of slaughter associated with the cattle-like food caste. If it is a free-for-all in the eating department, then it is very difficult to maintain a civilized society, making the Rephatians less dangerous to other civilizations. They would likely be locked in tribal warfare for most of their existance, unless they managed to make an uneasy peace long enough to capture some enemies for nourishment.
If your use of "prey" doesn't mean hunting, then what does it mean? Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
Wulfhere's comment on 2007-06-05 12:30 PM
You've put a lot of work into this culture, and it shows. It does have the feeling of an ongoing "work in progress", with more detailed articles to come on some of the subcastes (The Shark Warriors are a particularly good example, hopefully the first of several).

They remind me a lot of the "Moties" from A mote in God's Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. Like the Moties, the Rephatians are a race with several radically different subspecies, each suited to a different occupational niche. Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
dark_dragon's comment on 2007-05-11 04:18 PM
I agree Demagogue, I really like the tone and feel of this! *shudder* Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
dark_dragon's comment on 2007-10-10 01:45 AM
This is a fantastic sub which has sat in my favourites for a long time. I can now finally give it a vote and a well deserved BUMP! Go to Comment
The Rephatians
Society/ Organizations  (Mystical)   (Local)
Aramax's comment on 2012-11-30 10:00 AM
Only Voted Go to Comment
Artifacts of Stoneholt
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
valadaar's comment on 2007-05-10 12:12 PM

Artifacts




The somethingite Greatsword

This odd, giant-side (20' long) bladed weapon was found in the first opened Temple. Go to Comment
Artifacts of Stoneholt
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
valadaar's comment on 2007-08-07 12:58 PM

Materials




Shandricite

This material looks like fine-grained black basalt and shares many properties with that rock. However, it has a few interesting properties:

It is ductial and can be worked much as can be copper. It can be beaten thin and easily shaped. It is very heat resistent and can be used to make vessels capable of holding molten metals. It cannot be used in alloy with normal metals.

The material is hostile to organic materials, causing such substances to mineralize over time. Flesh will stiffen and insoluble salt crystals will being to grow within. These will cause mechanical damage, irritation and infections. Wood and bone will be gradually splintered by the growth of the mineral salts. The salts can be dissolved with acid, so vinegar would be usable treatment. The condition will stop advancing once contact with the material is discontinued, but the area will remain senstive to such contact furthermore, with the symptoms advancing more rapidly on future contact.

This material has a very high ratio of Earth to other elements and appears to be created through a special purification process of normal Basalt.

Starcrystal


This unearthly crystal has several intresting properties:

1. It has the same density as air, but does not expand/contract greatly in response to temperature changes. As a result, it sinks lower when air temperature decreases, and rises when the air is cold.

2. It is very sharp, and very fragile.

3. It resembles diamond in it's effects on light.

4. It also refracts and scatters magical energy which touches it, seperating the enrgy into its components and scattering them about the area. The effects are very much random unless one has an extraordinary understanding of magic, in which case the effects appear quite logical. Go to Comment
The Sewers of Stoneholt
Locations  (Area)   (Underground)
Aramax's comment on 2017-01-29 11:52 AM
Def a 3.5 if you "cult of done" this Go to Comment
Tales of the Phantom Ship
Items  (Transports)   (Cursed)
manfred's comment on 2007-05-02 02:50 PM
Great atmosphere! Go to Comment
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Nomadic Library

       By: Murometz

Saril had a dream. To open a library in the windswept wastes of Naarish, so that the people of the many villages and towns spread over the hundreds of leagues of desert could discover the joys of his books. For a whole year he kept his library open, but alas, almost no one came.

That is when Saril came up with his new idea. If people didn't travel to read his books, he would travel to them! Saril closed his library, hired a team of twelve camels, loaded up the beasts with all of his books and proceeded to invent the first nomadic library.

Now children and adults alike, looked forward to hearing the bells of Saril's camels as he entered their villages, as he tirelessly traversed the deserts in a long circuitous route, visiting every village and town he came across, in turn. It came to pas that Saril's traveling library came to some fame, and that is how the folk of Naarish became literate.

A word of warning though. Naarish has only six thousand volumes. He deals with those that lose or steal his tomes quite "harshly", by bypassing the town or village which was responsible for losing one of his books for that calendar year.

Encounter  ( Desert ) | January 12, 2016 | View | UpVote 3xp