Dahara: Fallen Harvest
Races of Dahara
As recounted by the Master Scholar Agiten (“the Neverdead”) of the Magister’s Council of Ulrich
Dahara as a land has proven to be populated by a large number of races and species. The issue comes in chronicling which of these races to document; which of these races to speak of in terms relevant to the reader of this tome. For purposes of this recounting, we shall make reference to what I shall call the Primary races of Dahara. These races, when regarded by all speaking and gods-fearing individuals, would be the ones all can agree have contributed to the history and story of Dahara.
Annotation by Ralnassis, Lead Scholar of the Free City of Kharen’.
While Atigen’s recounting of these “Primary” races is sound, I feel it is only fair to document that other races not mentioned – notably Gnolls, Hobgoblins, and some might even argue Ogres bears mention. While these races behave in a manner that may sometimes be counterproductive to the races of Men, they still present a viable culture. Indeed, some records and oral histories illustrate that both Hobgoblins and Gnolls once led what Atigen would term as productive lives. Some stories even stake the claim that Gnolls were here before the arrival of Men. Lest more debate arise on the subject, it is worth noting that Kharen’ itself hosts more than one Gnoll enclave, with some of their species operating a legal and acknowledged business within our fair walls.
The Race of Men or Man
It is not clear or even documented truth that Men were the first race in Dahara, but it is widely believed so. Numerous tales indicate that Men originated ages ago in that most awesome of mountain ranges, the Gurrtecks. There, in their massive tunneled cities and strongholds, Men thrived for ages, exploring, trading and even making war against rival clans and houses. While the Gurrtecks have never been successfully traversed so that what remains on the other side might be discovered, many believe that there are records among Men that bear this truth.
For untold generations Men remained in their rocky homes, until explorers reached the eastern edge of the range, finding the foothills and plains that lay beyond. It was then that that many believed the Great Division occurred, eventually bringing to life the races of the LowMen and the HuMen.
Men stand no taller than five feet tall and generally no shorter than four. Nearly all male Men sport rich, luxurious beards. Those that sport none (derisively referred to as “The Lifeless”) do exist, but are rare. Men can live for up to 200 years. Skin tone varies from starkly pale to a ruddy red, depending upon the Man’s lifestyle. They are stout warriors or excellent traders, but rarely both. It is these two professions however that garner all the glory and prestige in Men society. Only Men artisans can lay claim to special treatment (because of their ability to create exsquisite works of art). Men prefer the mountains, but have occupied some lower lying areas usually when it comes to mineral findings. Clannish, they keep to themselves for the most part, save for the merchants who trade with the other races. These Men serve the multiple purposes. Not only traders, but gatherers of news and information, and ambassadors to the other races.
The personalities of Men vary greatly. While they generally prefer their own kind, all Men are explorers at heart, and have a simple curiosity about things they do not know about.
Low Light Vision: Men are used to life underground and ignore penalties for Dim and Dark lighting
Slow: Men have a Pace of 5
Tough: Living in the mountains makes Men rugged. They start with a Vigor of d6, rather than d4.
The Race of HuMen or HuMan
Much conjecture exists as to where HuMen came from. While the claims that HuMen are a race unto themselves (rather than a descendant of Men) have quieted over the years, the debate has moved as to whether HuMen came from the Men of the Gurrtecks, or from one of the many mountain ranges in Dahara. Indeed some tales told by minstrels and scholars alike give evidence to the HuMen in Dahara’s northern regions (now the Kingdom of Ulrich) being descended from the Men clans of the Dragon’s Teeth mountains. Throughout this debate, there has been no claim by any major enclave of Men that they are the originators of the HuMen.
Regardless of such history, HuMen exist, and have become easily the most populus race in all of Dahara, dotting its landscape with everything from roaming tribes to powerful kingdoms. Indeed, as political entities, HuMen dominate. Their inbred sense of curiosity, bravery and even arrogance have lead HuMen from their storied beginnings in small huts and camps, to weilding some of the greatest power, culture and art in all of Dahara.
Of all the races of Dahara, HuMen have the most varied of appearance. Hair and skin color vary from a deep red-brown in the southern reaches to a light peach in the north. HuMen can grow as tall as six feet, but tales tell of those growing as tall as seven . HuMen can live for up to 150 years, though many do not.
HuMen have embraced everything the world has had to offer and thus can easily fit into a variety of roles. Indeed, it is the ability of HuMen to adapt to so many varied environments that has allowed them to thrive as they do.
Much like everything else HuMen do, their personalities are wide and varied. Various cultures have developed certain dominant behaviors, but again, that varies.
HuMen generally prefer to exist in familial units, but the structure of these units varies from location to location.
HuMen characters receive one free Edge
The Race of LowMen or LowMan
Believed to be the other race descended from Men, LowMen have roamed the land of Dahara for ages. Believed to have been created from the Great Division, LowMen have shown much of the same adaptability as the HuMen, but LowMen seem to have retained the love for the higher country, remaining predominantly in the foothills of mountain ranges, or in hillier country.
LowMen have always taken on much derision from Men and even some HuMen cultures for the lifestyles many LowMen socieities lead. While Men have always taken great care with the building of their underground cities and cultures, and HuMen have forged great structures and socieities above ground, LowMen seem to care little for such things. While this certainly does not mean LowMen live in what might be called “dumps,” it does mean that LowMen are usually happy with less, when compared to other races.
LowMen prefer to spend their time in the enjoyment of life, what it has to offer, and the entertainment of those around them. This has led LowMen to become some of the most skilled entertainers and performance artists in the known world. Many are the stories of people laughing quietly at the dirty, unkempt LowMan in front of them, only to find that he has the most stunning singing voice they have ever heard. And though they may enjoy living in the hills, many LowMen travelling shows can be found criss-crossing the trader roads of Dahara.
Because of the scorn sometimes endured at the hands of others, and the general feeling amongst many LowMen cultures that “no one understands them,” LowMen are some of the most clannish and family-oriented of all the races of Dahara. Some LowMen cultures practice and promote Polyarmory.
LowMen always seem to have life’s fortunes fall their way, however. Whether it is through general blind luck or if the gods have chosen to smile on them because of the beauty they possess within, they have proven to be a tenacious race.
LowMen have their name partially because of their size, which averages around four feet. They are thinner of build, being less stout than Men. They can often be confused with HuMen children at times. Hair styles and length vary depending upon family or societal customs, and skin color usually has a more ruddy tone. While LowMen have a reputation for being on the dirty and unkempt side, such appearances vary wildly. Some fit that sterotype to a tee, while many do not. It is the rare LowMan though who goes out of his way to be spotless and well-dressed from head to toe.
LowMen have a generally laid back and relaxed approach to life. They are by no means lazy, despite what certain signs may show. They just choose to focus their energies into pursuits they enjoy. They get along well with HuMen for the most part, but seem to have issues now and again with the desires of Men.
Fortunate: LowMen receive one extra Benny per session. This may be combined with the Luck and Great Luck Edges.
Short: LowMen’s small size subtracts 1 from their Toughness. LowMen have a Size of -1, and cannot take the Small Hindrance
Spirited: Lowmen are generally optimistic folk. They start with a D6 Spirit instead of a d4.
Show Off: LowMen characters receive the Perform Skill (a new skill – Spirit) at a d4.