Roughly as high as a man's waist, and nearly seven feet long, these compact great cats are unmistakable, even in the deep woods, where their tawny, black-spotted skin blends into the shifting shadows, both night and day.
With broad shoulders, long forelegs, and a stocky body, the Felalunar are nearly as comfortable as bipeds as they are as they are on their feet, while enlongated fingers and an opposable thumb, each still tipped with retractable claws, allow the manipulation of tools. Visually, however, they are still very much cats, and maintain many of the nocturnal predator's habits.
The Felalunar, only recently awakened into sentience, remain, by and large, 'uncivilized' by the standards of Man. They are organized into loose tribes, which are, for the most part, interrelated by blood and marriage, their numbers just large enough to keep inbreeding from being much of a problem.
Having no advanced tools, no written language, and no significantly organized religion, the few men who have encountered them tend to discount them as uncivilized, and possibly even unintelligent, though nothing could be further from the truth.
Tribal leadership is shared between the Hunting Chief and the Spirit Chief, each with his or her own jurisdiction. The Hunting Chief makes all decisions related to hunting, war(such as it is), and food stocks in general. It is his responsibility to see to it that the tribe is able to feed itself, and appropriately armed for hunting, and for fighting if need be. The Spirit Chief, meanwhile serves as a history keeper, a shaman, and as a medicine man, telling the stories of the tribe, tending to their injuries and illnesses, and translating the voices of the Gods and the spirits to the tribe. Most of these Spirit Chiefs have an animistic world view, seeing the spirits present in almost all things.
History is kept through the tribal-chants, long and and complex rhythmic poems that are passed from Spirit Chief to Spirit Chief, and sung on the night of each full moon, the night that is given to the Gods that gave them the spark of intelligence.
Technologically, the cat-men are far, far behind the civilized races, and their weapons are generally stone-tipped spears and knives, when they even bother to carry them. Their peculiar physiology generally precludes the use of bows and slings, making them predisposed to hunting through stealth and superior reflexes. Clothing is generally made from tanned hide, and is often more for decoration and carrying tools than for warmth or modesty - The Felalunar observe no nudity taboo.
Generally, the males and females of the tribes will mate for life, with the male handling the majority of hunting and tool-crafting activities, while the female is generally a gatherer, though this has been known to switch back and forth when one is particularly talented at a given activity. Cooperation between the members of a tribe is generally high.
When the females give birth to a litter of kittens, there are typically 2-3 kittens, of which both parents are generally fiercely protective. They are capable of feeling the full range of sentient emotions, and parental love for children is especially strong in them.
Occasionally, when peaceful contact with the outside world is made, the Felalunar may be willing to barter, trading pelts, antlers, and other such commodities for tools of steel, fine candies, and liquors. Though the unwary may try it from time to time, it is generally considered poor form to try to bilk the Felalunar, if only because an angry one may very well choose to hunt down the guilty merchant.
In the days of legend, when the Gods walked the earth, and Heroes were their children, when the mighty armies of good clashed with the terror of evil in the open fields. And in those days, Ragnok the Devourer chose to split the forces of his army, sending his calvary through the Northern Woods, in order to flank the armies of the Golden King, knowing that none inhabited those lands to harry and slow them as they passed through those forests. Unbelievably dismayed was he, then, when the few men who arrived, arrived on foot, his calvary in shambles, and without those critical reinforcements, the Golden King shattered the armies of the Devourer, sending him slinking back to the ice-lands. But he did not investigate the cause of this, merely thanking the Gods.
Now, the Gods, in their curiosity, did investigate - They found that the brigades of Ragnok had fallen afoul not of any force of man or elf or dwarf or any of their allies, but rather, to the local predator, the great cats of the Northern forest, remarkable not for their large size or wicked fangs and teeth, but for their loosely coordinated prides, which had descended on the black armies in the night, and devoured their horses, mauling those that resisted. The Gods, then, determined that these creatures should know what they had done, and ever eager for new followers, granted them the spark of the thinking mind, and altered their bodies subtly, so that they might become users of tools. And they left them, then, in their forests, to grow and to learn, to become a new people, proud of their history.
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? Responses (5)-5
Updated: Punting this out there, though it still feels like it needs something. Not sure what, though.
A nice race. I think a detailed, noteworthy individual and perhaps some real conflict - an enemy, etc, would spice things up a bit.
Why does it need that spicing up in the write up? Those kind of things should be set up by the GM when they install them into their world - i.e. the impact of these creatures upon your world (if any). Since the author can't forsee your world and there is nothing in blatent opposition, the GM will have to do it.
I like this too. 4/5
Stone Aged Cat People. Kind of fun.
I would of liked you to describe their clothing (which I assume will be a harness or vest like arrangement).
Do they live out in the open, or in caves, or in tents of their own creation?
How about fire? Now most stone age peoples use fire for cooking and tool making, these people may or may not use it.
Can they throw a spear? If they can do that they could use a short bow (though not as efficiently./ effectively as species who can more easily move their forelimbs horizontally - to the side- like us)
I would think they would use sleds and such to carry some of their materials.