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Ethaefal

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Ethaefal
Heightno smaller than 5'6" no taller than 7'.5
Weight100-250
LifespanVaries greatly.
Major featuresLuminous skin, coloring alters with the season, subtle horns in all the colors of jade
AbilitiesWere-race, can age things a day by touch.
Population300, but fluctuates
ReputationMysterious and surreal
Racial godsSyna or Leth
Racial bonus+10 Astronomy, Astrology or Leadership
Subracesnone


In the Valterrian, the divine realms of Syna and Leth were broken and many of the righteous they claimed from the cycle of life and death fell to Mizahar. The fissure is being healed slowly, but claimed souls continue to slip through. These displaced creatures are marked by beauty from dwelling with the divine. When their god falls from prominence with the day or evening though, they return to the shape of an earthbound race.

Contents

History

A People Found and Lost


Image:Scroll2.png "There was a serene sadness as the Ethaefal gazed at the moon. He had known peace and lost it. It broke my heart to look at him."
- Averly the Sojourner

While blood watered the grass on Mizahar and the Valterrian tore kingdoms out at their roots, the gods also warred. In the struggle, the lovers Leth and Syna banded together. Leth bore the most wounds, as he was always standing between Syna and harm. During the divine cataclysm, both deities had their celestial dwellings struck. A fissure tore through their realms and souls that dwelled there were drawn through it.

These fallen souls were snatched from an immortal, spirit state and slammed to the broken world of Mizahar. Souls who had been drawn out of the cycle of life and death by Leth and Syna found themselves mired by earthly concerns again. They awoke on strange coasts and new waters formed by the sundering of the land. Their communion with stars and gods had shuddered to an end. After fighting for the shore, this host of people struggled to fathom what memories they still possessed. Their bodies were changed: made solid and subject to mortal failings. It was a hasty rebirth with no one to attend to them.

And when the second day of their rebirth came, a new misfortune plagued the fallen creatures. When Leth faded to make way for Syna and her light, or Syna bowed out for Leth to glow, their followers shifted in form. While their deity shone, the creatures were beautiful, but when the light changed, their form faded and contorted to an ungraceful race. They were doomed to return to the shape of an earthbound life.

The souls found others like them, but it pained them to recall their lost fellowship. Murmurs were passed along to one another swift as moonlight, a gnosis gift from the god of thought. The people began to call themselves the Ethaefal and make new names to echo the ones they had lost.

The fissures in Leth's and Syna's realms are healing, but coast dwellers say glorious figures still rise from the foam and stare longingly at the sky.

Biology

Physical Appearance

Image:Scroll2.png "She simply did not belong. I can think of no other way to describe it. She was too sacred and lovely to walk on dirt and stones, to wear common cloth, to ask for bread. Having her here was like cleaning a latrine with silk."
- From A Collection of Ethaefal Accounts by Fineas Bead

During the time their patron god or goddess rules, the Ethaefal are creatures of surreal beauty. Their fall to Mizahar has dimmed the glory of their form, but they are still a wonder to behold. Aspects of the celestial body their deity blessed them with remain as a testament to what they once were when they lived suspended amongst stars.

Ethaefal are tall with smooth limbs and statuesque bearing. They are often full featured and have iridescent skin a shade warmer than marble. From their temples flow graceful horn-like shapes that appear carved from glassy stone. These unbreakable "horns" vary in form but often resemble elaborate jewelry or intricate crowns circling the head. They never grow forward as they are more adornment than weapon. The horns come in the varied shades of the milky jade stone including: green, lavender, red, yellow, white and black.

An Ethaefal of Syna shifting from spring to summer.

Hair and horn color gradually change with the seasons, as Ethaefal feel the influence of time passing like their deities. The twilight of seasons produces some of the most stunning coloring as one hue bleeds into the next.

Ethaefal belonging to Leth and those belonging to Syna differ in ways that reflect the influence of their deity.

Leth's Ethaefal have a subtle sheen of moon tints along their opalescent skin, and their eyes are silver, indigo, cobalt or violet.

  • Winter colors: Hair - white, silver; Horns - black, violet
  • Fall colors: Hair - pale gold, ruddy hues like Fall moons; Horns - yellows
  • Spring colors: Hair - silvery blue, lavender gray; Horns - white
  • Summer colors: Hair - black; Horns - all shades of green

Syna's Ethaefal glimmer shades of rosy gold or copper when they shift in the sunlight, and their irises are a molten amber, dusky blue, citrine or green.

  • Winter colors: Hair - pale brown; Horns - forest green
  • Fall colors: Hair - deep auburns and reds; Horns - reds, golds
  • Spring colors: Hair - shades of blonde; Horns - spring green and lilac
  • Summer colors: Hair - any of the above hues, but touched by gold; Horns - white, peach
Image:Scroll2.png "I couldn't resist a traveler handsome as him. I offered him a bed in the house but he took a spot in the barn. Come morning I bring some food around and there's this terrible Symenestra in his place. Dreadful spidery race. I threw the hot porridge on him and ran for my pitchfork, like any smart girl would."
- From A Collection of Ethaefal Accounts by Fineas Bead

When their patron deity relinquishes dominance of the sky for the other, the beauty of the Ethaefal diminishes. They revert to how they appeared in the last mortal life that aligned with their Ethaefalen gender. If a female Ethaefal was a male Human in her latest life but a female Jamoura in the life before, she will revert to Jamoura. This is because the Ethaefalen gender is the one chosen by their deity, and therefore the one that suits divine purposes best. The will of the deity continues to reign even when Leth or Syna are not in their time of prominence.

Personality is a little affected by the change. The Ethaefal are free of the physical frailties of their race when in celestial form. Returning to a more easily corrupted state can be difficult, but it will not overwhelm the Ethaefal's character. An Ethaefal might be more prone to swings of mood and irritability in their mortal seeming, but will not be unrecognizable.

Ethaefalen abilities are also suspended. Only traits bestowed by gnosis marks will remain.

Common Traits

Since Ethaefal are souls that attained an exalted spiritual state, many are wise and patient, with a perspective that considers long term ramifications. They are knit closely with nature and time, feeling its influence keenly.

An Ethaefal is not immortal, though. Their bodies remain untouched by sickness, age and its frailties in either form, but they can be wounded and poisoned.

While in Ethaefal form, they have no need to eat or drink or have any of the bodily processes brought on by food. Meager sunlight or moonlight sustains them, vaguely similar to a flower fed by the sun. Hunger and thirst are felt only when in an earthbound form.

Abilities

Wondrous abilities were found and cultivated amongst the Ethaefal, a paltry prize for what they had lost. Ethaefal discovered they could give an organism or object the effect of being aged a day in a single moment. However, this could only be done once. Objects and organisms became immune to any Ethaefal's effect after the first touch. This immunity lasts until their deity's heavenly body rises anew. For example, an Ethaefal can age many things in a day, but only one time each.

When practiced dutifully, Ethaefal have the ability to make things age or grow twice as fast. However, this is limited to simpler structures. It is feasible to age a wound a day but not an entire body. Other organic compounds such as plants or small animals can be aged wholly.


Reproduction

Ethaefal cannot conceive or sire offspring unless in an earthbound form, and their child will have all the traits of the earthbound form and none of the Ethaefal's. There is no such thing as an Ethaefalen child, they arrive on Mizahar fully grown.

An Ethaefal's arrival to Mizahar always takes place in water, some posture because it is the most like an earthbound birth. When Ethaefal slip through the fissure, they re-appear in the waves of some shore or sea. From this miraculous arrival in the foam the naked Ethaefal must swim for land and begin their new life.

Psychology

A priestess Ethaefal of Leth.

Their fall to Mizahar bred all manner of reactions from Ethaefal. Some plunged into despair and took their lives in hopes of returning to the cycle or the home of their deity. Others viewed their descent as a destined portion of their journey, and some fall between, longing but hopeful. Benevolent Ethaefal who remain on Mizahar are marked by the serenity of those who have seen and endured much.

The worst sort of Ethaefal are those who lost all hope and viewed their fall as a cruel whim of the gods. These rare Ethaefal are called "Forsaken" and endure with bitterness and contempt for their former gods. Unmoored from devotion to their deities, they do not shift with the seasons or have the power to age by touch. It is often said, the brighter the soul, the darker the Forsaken.

In Ethaefal form, the memories of past lives and seasons among the divine are stronger. While memory of their distant pasts are mostly lost, Ethaefal can recall snatches of events that were significant to the growth or hindrance of their soul. This tends to make them a degree aloof and detached, as their thoughts are split between vastly different worlds.

As an earthbound race, or in "mortal seeming", Ethaefal forget all past lives but the one their form is connected to. Even that life is garbled though, recalled only in a brief collage of meaningful events. Of course, they still recall pieces of their time with the divine and their current existence, but their earthbound minds have difficulty comprehending the godly realm they once knew.

Society

Ethaefal rarely band together, as it reminds them of the fellowship they lost. They wander like pilgrims across the face of Mizahar, sometimes settling in remote, lovely places. The mountains are favored as they feel closer to their gods on stone peaks.

Language

Ethaefal speak Common, and their mortal seeming's tongue. Their celestial language cannot be reproduced with physical mouths, and any attempt seems woefully inadequate.

Names

Ethaefal were granted a divine name upon entrance into their deity's realm, however, this name cannot be pronounced or repeated. They hear it in their minds but can no longer mimic the sound. As a result, Ethaefal have turned to naming themselves after features of the sky in any language, mostly constellations. They have no last names.

Religion

Few Ethaefal choose to serve another god, the majority are wholly devoted to either Syna or Leth. Tanroa, who appointed their gods, is also a common tangental divinity.

Notable Ethaefal PCs

Children of Syna & Leth
heightCaelumDreamwalker, Healer, Beloved of Syna