They couldn't be more wrong. Thousands of miles below the clear blue waters inhabited by the Brave People,there lie the absolute darkness of the depths. The Eshal seldom venture there,telling horrible tales of the gruesome leviathans that are said to inhabit those black waters,horrendous massive beasts and monsters that would devour any foolish enough to descend into those depths.
It is there,in that eerie alien landscape inhabited by monstrosities such as eyeless fish and bony, spiked eels, the one place in all Tarrod that can never be assailed by the scourge who call themselves the Brave People,that the strange and arrogant race of the Usholal live, free from all prying eyes. Possessing interesting physiology strongly reminiscent of a large octopus,these strange folk are a study in uniqueness,even by the downright freakish standards of Tarrod. Living in their hidden dwellings of pink coral,they posses a level of sophistication and even more surprisingly,a philosophy of non-confrontation, unknown elsewhere in the violent world of Tarrod.
Their society is a very odd one indeed. Fearful and paranoid of any danger,real or imagined,this is a race that has effectively barricaded itself behind closed doors,determined not to put themselves in harm's way. And thus have been the seeds sown for a civilization where everyone lives in nigh complete isolation,yet with the generous aid of ingenious contraptions and their collective ethos,manage to carry out their collective responsibility to keep the civilization of the Usholal running smoothly. Every Ushoal since infancy is warned about the dangers lurk outside their safe realm. While caution is indeed advisable in a world as dangerous as that of Tarrod, the Usholal have taken it to an extreme by banning any external contact with the outside world. While the reasons for its may seem fairly obvious, the Usholal have seen it as the only means by which they can avoid the path of violence that has consumed other civilizations. This conviction has been ingrained within them by their exploration and study of the ancient ruins left behind by long vanished aquatic civilizations which embarked on a path of violent confrontation, only to meet with eventual annihilation. Thus fears of following the example of militaristic and ultimately self-destructive ancient civilizations have convinced the Usholal that their best hope avoiding the path of violence and dominance is to shun the outside world all together. To this end, they have largely profited by living at depths which would be lethal for other sentient species. However, over centuries, this tendency to shun the external realm has developed into a powerful paranoia which pervades the minds of this race. Convinced that all non Usholal life forms are either inherently dangerous or inferior, the Usholal see no reason to to leave their habitations and instead rely on powerful mechanical constructs to attend to more mundane tasks like the harvesting of fish, crabs and other types of sustenance that the Usholal require. These sometimes venture to the surface to harvest fish, clams and other dietary staples, even occasionally attacking Eshal fishing parties in order to seize the food stores of the latter. The Brave People regard these monstrous terrors as fearful demons and for that very reason, are loath to fish in waters inhabited by the Usholal. Some of these constructs have been used to harvest much prized minerals from quarries on dry land further adding to the menace of the Usholal, further adding to the menace pervading the realm of the Usholal .
Usholal material culture
Such elaborate secrecy might seem nothing short of blatant overkill in the eyes of a human,but for an Usholal residence these are measures that are is amply mandated,given that an Usholal is loath to step out of its dwelling and confront the physical dangers lurking outside. Thus,all projects and initiatives have be run from an individual's home,making it a tiny base of operations by itself. The interior of a typical Usholal home consists of an oval chamber crafted entirely from a smooth,seamless strange metal that glows an eerie neon green. It also houses a rectangular pool of a transparent, faintly quivering like substance that takes up the center of every Usholal dwelling. Possessing the texture and consistency of jelly, they are a basic feature which power the very civilization of the Usholal itself. Within their quivering forms, rest the essential ingredients that make the Usholal what they are.
Protruding from the crystal clear depths of the jelly like mass, are two thin black cords of some material unknown to humans. Both end in narrow tapering points that are surmounted by a pointed copper encasement. Between these two point, is fused an oddly shaped steel helmet that is large enough to accommodate the bulging cranium of the Usholal that owns owns it. When an Usholal fastens on this helmet,he or she is able to reach out with their mind to access the Lagarshuu ,that immense medium of communication that interlinks all Usholal with the various facets of their civilizations. By mentally addressing the giant nexus powering the Lagarshuu ,they can reach any other Usholal from the safety of their homes,or command the vast constructs that perform all the heavy work on behalf of their respective Usholal owners. For instance,an Usholal who's taken it upon itself to ward the furthest boundaries of its community ,will call out to the mechanical construct that it has positioned along the fringes of Usholal civilization. Immediately,a sharp mental image of a huge metallic construct built to resemble a monstrous shark appears, in the mind of the Usholal along with the designated section of ocean it has been dispatched to keep an eye on. Focusing on the image of the shark construct in its mind ,the Usholal can silently give it an order to drive away any Eshal party that strays into the hidden domain of its species.
In this highly automated manner does the massive apparatus of Usholal civilization operate. Physical interaction is nigh non-existent,with all business conducted via the Lagarshuu. This fact is not lost on the Usholal and they do their utmost to protect themselves from the Black Ones,those vile horrors able to slip into the mind of a sentient being and bow the poor creature's will to their malevolent bidding. In a society as connected as that of the Usholal,all it would take is a single possessed individual for a Black One to wreck enormous havoc and misery. Fearful of this chilling possibility,the Usholal have erected an elaborate system of metal towers that give off a powerful force field capable of destroying the physical make up of anything that draws close,be it solid,liquid or vapor. It has worked extremely well so far,and the Usholal have yet to be plagued by the grim torments the Black Ones take such sadistic pleasure in devising.
But perhaps the most interesting thing about the Usholal,is the existence of a radical group of outcastes foolhardy enough,some would say even suicidal,to break free of the oppressive paranoia that grip their people. Determined to leave behind the comfort and safety of home and answer the call of the spirit of adventure that suffuses their souls,they are regarded as lunatics for their manic courage and recklessness. Indeed,many of them display symptoms typical of metal disorders which modern psychologists would recognize as schizophrenia or multiple personality disorder. But it is also this same madness that drives them to achieve feats of exploration and heroism which would earn them the status of great heroes among other races. The Usholal however regard them as mentally defective abominations and have hence severed their connections with the Lagarshuu . Those among these outcastes who do not voluntarily surrender their links to the Lagarshuu are often compelled to do so by a giant construct operating on behalf of the entire community. This severance of all links with the very essence of Usholal civilization is regarded as symbolic death which is further signified by the forced expulsion of the proscribed individual. Convinced that mental illnesses can be inherited genetically, the despised are banished in order to remove them from the potential gene pool.