From Mizahar Lore
| "Fire bless this beach. Fire heat our meat. Fire warm our souls. Fire know our goals." |
- Kavindon, Svefra Bard Singing a Firesong to bless a beach.
The Children of Laviku: The Whalekin
|Weight||120 - 250 lbs|
|Lifespan||60 - 80 years|
|Major features||Human, multiple hair, Caucasian features, with blue eyes always.|
|Population||Unknown - mainly in The Suvan Sea|
|Most common in||Suvan Sea|
|Reputation||Sailors and Fisherman|
|Racial bonus||+10 to any one skill (most common is Sailing or Swimming)|
The Svefra (pronounced seph-rawh) are the blue-eyed nomads of the Suvan Sea. Having a wandering lifestyle, the Svefra call no one place home. Instead they consider anywhere on the seas of Mizahar their domain and anywhere they touch their territory. While they predominately live within the Suvan Sea, they can be found in the greater oceans as well. The Svefra build no permanent settlements and have established no cities. Instead, their homes are beside fleeting bonfires on deserted beaches and within their well-constructed boats afloat on the great tides. Their whereabouts often drastically change from season to season according to food and resource availability. Svefra, unlike other races, have the unique ability to mobilize and travel vast distances in relatively short amounts of time so long as their destination is coastal.
To most of the rest of Mizahar, the Svefra are considered a plague on the seas. They tend to control ocean traffic by either getting in the way of traders or sometimes raiding them. The vast majority of the Svefra are marked with Laviku's gnosis, which grants them the ability to survive nicely at sea both in and out of the water. Their culture is closely guarded and they tend to stick with their own, rarely straying far from the sea or the marine life on which they so highly depend. Svefra are excellent swimmers, fishermen, and sailors. They also have a wide variety of gifts within their ranks and are easily self-sufficient, only trading with other cultures for the things they might need like weapons and other metal objects.
The Svefra claim they have always existed. Even before the Valterrian and even too before the rise of the Suvan and Alahea Empires, the Svefra thrived. Before the existence of the Suvan Sea, the great wandering peoples dwelled on the outskirts of the continent, sailing the great northern and southern seas. They rode out the Valterrian afloat in deeper ocean waters, losing many ships and many of their family in the process. Their marine friends kept the Svefra safe; the whales and dolphins brought them warning even before the great tidal waves hit, swamping their greatest ships and largest families. Unlike the empires of Suva and Alahea, they did not perish under Ivak's wrath. Instead, the Valterrian was seen as a doorway to their own masterful world, one in which they could finally have a homeland in the form of an inland sea. Now their once scattered population is happily condensed within the Suvan Sea, drawn together by its tumultuous birth, so akin to the Svefra themselves. The Svefra even claim that it was they who led their oceanic friends into the Suvan's mouth, down her throat and into her belly once the waters calmed and the boiling stopped, driven by Laviku’s word that it would be habitable and safe for all his children.
But the world of the before times was not the world of the now. It was a good thing the Svefra found a homeland. New races unfamiliar to the Svefra now roam the world: Konti, Symenestra, even Ethafael. Humans changed as well. Great horse-clans arose even as nations fell. In the burning waters off Eyktol, the seas grew even hotter. So too the impacts of the Valterrian were felt by the Svefra off the shores of the lush jungles of Falyndar and its ripe fruit-laden beaches. Storms came where none existed before. Everywhere, everything was new, even the great peaks of western Kalea. The seas grew less stable on the outskirts of continental Mizahar. So, the Svefra took shelter within, utilizing the calmer waters and sheltered harbors of the Suvan Sea. It was there that they healed their wounds, rested, and rebuilt their scattered nation.
Once, the Svefra's numbers were vast. They were the scourge of the two mighty empires, dominating sea traffic by knowing the best and fastest ways to travel. Their ships weren't superior, not when compared to Zeltiva’s fleet. But then again, the scholars of Zeltiva were easy pickings, so soon their shipwrighting efforts passed into Svefra hands whenever the Svefra desired. And because they had no homeland, the Svefra were hard to control. Their numbers were always impossible to determine, fluctuating wildly, and impossible to count. When Nal'lyeo were held, sometimes one could count their numbers and get a clear census, but often the sheer numbers of Svefra that showed during ‘interventions’ tended to overwhelm and panic local officials so that no head counts were taken. As a result, modern scholars have no way of knowing exactly how many Svefra there are. Some estimates place them at only five hundred. Others say they number in the tens of thousands.
Even though the Svefra are from human stock, the subculture itself has evolved with enough diversity from the common stock that they are seemingly their own cultural group without a doubt. Like most subcultures, interacting with the Svefra reinforces this idea because of the vast difference in psychology between most humans and the Svefra themselves. These differences include psychological, physiological, and cultural differences that mark them distinctly as Svefra, even as their physical appearance resembles that of humans worldwide. Beyond the characteristics of having blue eyes, each and every Svefra is a great swimmer. They can sail and fish almost from birth, with their parents often tossing them into the sea even before they can walk. The Svefra are nomadic and migrate around the Suvan Sea following their family and friend in a wide range of migratory patterns or indeed no patterns at all. When marked with Oceanus, each Svefra thrives only in close proximity to the sea. Away from the seas, they feel disenchanted and often distraught. Svefra who are not marked with Laviku's gift often wander from their family and tend to move inland, away from the sea.
Svefra come in all shapes and sizes. In general, however, they are some of the larger humanoid stock on Mizahar just due to the sheer availability of food during their upbringing. The Suvan Sea is rich in marine life and to a people accustomed to hunting, fishing, and foraging in its depths or along its shores, food is abundant. This also adds to the overall health and fitness of the Svefra, which is fairly high. The only completely distinctive factor in the Svefra is that they all have blue eyes. Their religious teachings state, because of their ties to Laviku, they have the ocean in their gaze. If any child is born without blue eyes, they are cast adrift as an offering to Laviku and given back to the sea from whence the Svefra attribute their origins. This casting adrift guarantees their death. Svefra are only considered Svefra if they carry Laviku's gift - blue eyes - to remind them of where they come from and how closely they are tied to the Sea.
In addition to having eclectic taste in clothing, the Svefra often get whale and dolphin tattoos that resemble the kind of creatures with whom their 'pods' often hang out. Because of their Laviku marks, often the Svefra can befriend individual ocean animals, which in turn will swim with them or even allow themselves to be used as a marine mount. Once these friendships have been established, most commonly with dolphins and small whales, the Svefra will almost always get a tattoo of their 'friend' upon their form. These tattoos vary wildly and can be either very simple line outlines or wildly complex inkings of truly astonishing proportions.
In addition, each Svefra family group often has a matriarchal pod representative that is not a human. These pods will often take the name of this individual as their family name and each member of the family will get a custom tattoo that shows they are indeed from that specific pod. Designs and styles vary wildly. The only common factor is that the designs remain the exact same throughout each family member and are given to the family member at the onset of adulthood or at age fifteen.
Seasonally clothing selections vary among the Svefra. In the winter they may wear layer upon layer and in the summer they may go with as little as possible. Nudity isn't an issue among the Svefra, so you might see just as many bare-chested women as men working in the sun during the course of a day. Women tend to adorn themselves with multiple ropes of beads made of shell and glass that tend to cover any indecency. However, in general, the Svefra prefer brightly colorful outfits that consist of layers of material. They tend to 'collect' things from other cultures and wear them all together. Particularly coveted are garments from Eyktol, glass beadwork from Wind Reach, furs from Avanthal, and inks from Falyndar. They are particularly fond of scarves, jewelry, and a wide assortment of shells. The Svefra mix and match styles, layer, and often wear their wealth on them in the form of jewelry or metal.
Unlike other subcultures of humans, the Svefra claim they often have more in common with the marine mammals of the Suvan than they do with other groups of humans. They take their cues from these creatures - both in the way the animals life and in their overall philosophy mimicking most of their behavior in the extreme. The Svefra align themselves with whales and dolphins because they believe these animals are every bit as smart as they are. Individuals often have a 'Tavan,' which means friend in the language of the Svefra. Tavan are special individual animals that befriend individual human Svefra often from an early age. Children tend to have Tavan that are seals, otters, or dolphins. Older Svefra often have tavan who are dolphins, whales and even sharks. The Tavan have special relationships with individuals of the pods, bridging the gap between the oceans and lands. Tavan hunt and fish alongside the Svefra. Because tavan pods (such as an entire dolphin pod) often join with Svefra pods as whole units, the individuals of one pod often pair off with various members of the other pod. This unity is due to the Laviku marks most Svefra bear. These marks facilitate communication between man and mammal helping the Svefra find fish easier and survive on the Suvan far easier than non-marked individuals can. In exchange, the Svefra often help whale pods make kills and supply their friends with extra fish if they are particularly successful in netting or seining. Svefra boats are often accompanied by dolphin or whale pods and the Svefra themselves think nothing of tossing their children overboard when they are anchored to play with the dolphins that linger.
Probably one of the most distinctive personality traits that is wholly Svefra is the lack of ownership. Svefra have a really hard time with this concept. If something is in someone's hand, then that person needs it and it rightfully belongs to them. If someone leaves something unattended, then its not owned and is free for the pickings. This naturally gives the Svefra a bad reputation among the non-Svefra of the world. Many other cultures consider them thieves and cut-purses, but in truth to the Svefra ownership is about sharing resources and learning to be strong enough to control them. One of their most common philosophies is that if someone isn't strong enough to hold onto something then they do not deserve to have it. That goes for lands, material possessions or even people. This works to benefit this culture a great deal, however, since food and resources are always openly shared and change hands quite actively. This also means that if a Svefra doesn't have the skills to provide fresh meat, they can get it readily from someone who does. That provider will then in turn often acquire something from that individual that they are not skilled to acquire otherwise - for example woven baskets exchanged for fresh meat. The sole exclusion to this is the ships they themselves either build or 'acquire' which they call their homes.
The Svefra can be considered whimsical and happy-go-lucky to a certain extent. They are serious about their survival, but in general they try not to take life too seriously. They find joy where they can and often love deeply of each other, giving support of their people whenever they can. They view other cultures as suspicious and very rarely extend trust to outsiders. They have the philosophy that if someone offends one Svefra, then they are actually offending all Svefra.
Reproduction & Aging
Due to their exposed lifestyles and philosophy, the Svefra run into trouble more often than other cultures. Predation by natural causes is high among their population. Children and adults alike get eaten by sharks, lost in storms and shipwrecks, or run afoul of local landowners. And through the course of their lives other cultures who come into contact with them often show animosity and wipe them out whenever possible. The Svefra take this all in stride, finding humor and mirth in life far more than many other cultures. Thus, the Svefra do not have a long life expectancy. They tend to be old at age 50 and often look older than they actually are.
Due to their footloose and fancy-free lifestyles, Svefra reproduce young. Girls as young as fifteen often choose to add children to the pods of their mother. Women as old as forty can choose to have children as well, as the Svefra are extremely fertile and rarely have problems giving birth, even in their advancing age.
The Svefra are divided into family groups called pods. Each family group has a matriarch which generally consists of the oldest female in the group. This matriarch is called the Lia. She can be referred to as Lia or 'Lia (Firstname)'. Her sons and daughters take on her name as do the children of her daughters. Children of her sons may as well so long as the son stays with the pod. Her sons may leave to join other pods and when they do so, their children take on the names of Matriarch who runs that particular pod. The most common reason for switching pods among males is to follow a particular individual, male or female. The pod the newcomer is joining must accept him via the Matriarch granting him her name. However, among the Svefra there is no marriage. The marks of Cheva may appear and pairs or trios may form up based on partnerships and love. But among the Svefra it is not uncommon for family groupings to be non-traditional and in unequal numbers, such as two men and a singular woman or two women and a man forming a subgroup within a larger pod. Same-sex pairings are acceptable, but the matriarch will often encourage females to have children to strengthen the pod and males to sire children to carry on their particular gifts. Often these micro-groups within a pod will give up their smaller ships (passing them down to younger ship-less members of their pods) and move into larger ships which they all live upon together. Ships are, of course, most often acquired. Pods are tightly-knit communities and often their dynamic changes as much as the locations of the Svefra do so. If an individual leaves the pod, their children stay with the original pod, not moving on to the new pod. Children are raised by everyone in the pod, so this is no burden on the Svefra at all.
Occasionally females leave pods and form their own. If this happens, they must acquire a 'Pardisa' to symbolize and protect their pods. Only Laviku can grant these through prayer and meditation. Often the Pardisa is the personal friend or tavan of the matriarch.
Most if not all Svefra are in a pod. They are born into one, after all. If a Svefra somehow manage to lose their pod (whether by disease, monsters, battle, etc.), they are pretty much forced into joining a new one; the Svefra as a racial whole dislike the disunity that stragglers would bring. All one has to do is make nice with the Lia of the pod they will join and the straggling Svefra is in. There may be some stragglers, but usually not for very long; peer pressure and an ingrained sense of family will oftentimes force them to seek out a pod to join.
From pod to pod there is no ranking. Each Lia is equal to any other Lia out there. In past times there used to be a Lia'Tavanka, or a Queen that ruled over the Svefra prior to the Valterrian. No Lia'Tavanka has risen in the ranks yet. The Svefra say there is no need currently. However, if their populations continue to grow and they find themselves at a point where leadership from pod to pod is needed, the Lia's will get together and elevate one of the women of the Svefra to Lia'Tavanka again. This is always a young woman, in her thirties, proven to be a fit fighter, good swimmer, and one that shows sharp intellect and a decidedly clever ability to lead.
The Laws of the Svefra
- Laviku is the All Father. Honor him above all other.
- The Sea is the sacred giver and taker of life. From it the Svefra have sprung. To it they will return. Protect it, for it is their mother.
- A man or woman's ship is the most important thing they own. It is an extension of their soul. To strike at a ship is the same as striking at she or he who owns it.
- All pods must have a Pardisa of Laviku to honor. Newly formed Pods must always seek one. Older pods must always honor the one they already have.
- Children belong to all. Adults in a pod must help in the rearing of a pod's children in every way they can, regardless of how the children are related.
- The oldest female member of the pod is automatically the Matriarch or Lia. She will be referred to as Lia or The Lia in honor of this status.
- The Lia's word is always law. She must be obeyed without question or she can release someone from the pod and they have no choice but to leave.
- If one Svefra is insulted, wounded, or treated badly it is as if all Svefra are. All calls for Nal'lyeo must be honored.
- It is a crime punishable by ones own death if one kills an Avikki. The Svefra guard them with their lives because they are their only means of communication with their far flung families.
The Nal'lyeo (pron. N-all Le'oh) is a curious cultural aspect of the Svefra that they have developed as a defense mechanism against the prejudice most every other culture on Mizahar feels towards them. It is really rather effective. If someone begins to openly discriminate against a Svefra in a specific location - be it a city port like Syliras, or perhaps even the entire city of Karjin, then the Svefra will drop what they are doing and descend upon the location en masse, overwhelming it with their presence. They can disrupt shipping, trading, the movement of goods, people and resources. They tend not to leave until an apology has been issued and the 'wrong' as they perceive it has been righted. This action tends to have the same effect as a flash mob, only it happens on a slower pace because it takes time for the Svefra to both get the call and answer it. Then, once at a Nal'lyeo, until the city leaders or port officials talk to the Lia's present, none of the Svefra will disperse. Often, one tiny incident can result in easily thousands of the Svefra showing up within days of its occurrence, plaguing the local officials and overrunning resources. Past experience has shown that it's far easier to smooth things over than to actually raise arms against the Svefra, who tend to retreat to open sea in that event and stage sorties that further disrupt commerce. It's not unheard of for a city well to get tainted in that event or even a plague of vermin to move in. Most of the rumors are outsourced by the Svefra to back up their actions, and said pests are usually already present, just stirred up by resourceful Svefra to all new highs. If bees move into the cities, and nests spring up overnight, odds are it's not because the Svefra have cast magic over the area even though they foster these types of rumors. Instead, it's more like industrious little Svefra children have waded into the woods in the dead of night and dug queens out of their hives and strategically placed them in the town at very appropriate and visible locations where the hive normally follows and swarms.
To the Svefra, a Nal'lyeo is also considered an important social reconnect time. They often work hard to best each other in their cleverness and tricks, all in the name of speeding an apology or embarrassing a badly behaved city official. Anyone can call the Nal'lyeo, but the more important you are the faster your people will come running. Each pod raises and trains Avikki birds, which resemble white seagulls. These birds easily travel from pod to pod carrying messages in leg holders. The same Avikki birds can also take messages across the countryside to the outer seas as well. The Svefra believe that all Avikki birds know all that other Avikki birds have seen so they have no problems finding people the Svefra name or describe, though occasionally they do get it wrong. One of the reasons the Avikki birds do so well is that they migrate from pod to pod frequently, spending time with various groups of Svefra. They raise their young among the Svefra, often nesting in or on ships rather than cliffs as they once traditionally did.
The Svefra speak Fratava and Common. Fratava is sometimes considered tradespeak and is often utilized in barter among cultures that are not even related to the Svefra. Fratava utilizes a great deal of hand gestures and facial expressions as well as an augmentation of rapid fire syllables. Fratava is considered an adverb and verb heavy language, one that is colorful and challenging to learn. It is said there is a Fratava word for everything, even new words that haven't been thought of yet. So unlike other languages, Fratava borrows almost nothing from its brother and sister languages out in the world. This often makes it challenging to learn if someone hasn't taken the time to learn it as a child.
A Lexicon is forthcoming.
Each Lia of the pod grants the use of her last name to the pod. All her children take on her last name and often each child in the pod is granted a name based on a theme. Themes can be anything from colors to animals to objects to ideas. Last names among the Svefra are often a nod to Laviku, having something to do with the ocean, tides, or water itself. It is fairly easy, even for a stranger, to pick out the individual members of a pod just by their names and how those names related to each other.
- Kalvin Riptide
- Pearl Seaward
- Lina Waverunner
- Sunflower Frothline
- Dugan Tradewind
- Asfala Seaglass
Life as a Svefra
Overall, life as a Svefra is pretty easy. Discounting the storms, rough seas, leaks in ships, and prejudice found throughout Mizahar towards them (some earned some unearned) life for the Svefra is actually easier than most. Food is abundant and they know how to catch, gather, and find it. Water comes regularly in the form of onshore sources and rain. The sea life that travels with the pods of Svefra often warn them of dangers like predators long before they become an issue with the Svefra, so the society as a whole has time to be 'bored'. This causes a great deal of trouble with them at times, for the Svefra are adventuresome and not easily entertained. Harassing passing ships can be a recourse from boredom as well as onshore sorties to local cities in which mischief can always be found. The Svefra are always open to taking gold or goods from people who come to them with legitimate business. They will run escort or ferry folks across the Suvan just to break the boredom and share stories or meet new friends. It is often the case as well if someone hires a ship to escort them a whole pod will show up to help with the fun as well. Wind is free. All the ocean is the same when you aren't traveling from point A to point B. Why not see what's on the other side of the horizon?
In a day to day situation, the Svefra have very little responsibility. They hunt, fish, and forage for food. They participate in child care and care of the elderly. They move from one spot to another if the mood strikes them. But often, most of their day is sought finding something to do which often results in mischief especially among the younger Svefra. Each and every Svefra normally has more or more hobbies they are really good at. Some make harpoons, others weave, some even practice glasswork in the heat of their campfires. Many Svefra amuse themselves serving the gods, so it is not unheard of for a Svefra to have had a personal conversation with one or more deities. They plan parties and social events, celebrate everything uproariously - birthdays, full moons, new moons, sunrises, sunsets, particularly nice weather, particularly bad weather, deaths, hunting victories, hunting losses, etc. There is no excuse too small to use for a party. And the Svefra do love their gatherings. When two pods meet, even if they haven't seen each other for only a full tenday, a party is held. If a pod meets another pod its never met before (which is rare) a full scale festival is held.
Strangers, so long as they come peacefully, are often welcomed at these parties. They are doubly welcome if they bring wine or spirits and home baked goods to the event. In fact, a Svefra gathering can attract a wide variety of folks from all walks of life if any civilization is nearby on the beaches these events are held at. Hunts are organized, then the result of the hunt is often roasted pit-style for all to enjoy. Food and music are abundant. Dancing happens as well as all sorts of trading can occur. Sometimes these gatherings can turn violent, but the Svefra are good at policing their own.
While the Svefra do have access to mizas, their preferred method of trade is through bartering. Often they will exchange skill for skill with each other and even complete strangers, foregoing any sort of coin changing hands. The Svefra are incredibly resourceful. They don't have the need to trade for many things, nor do they really covet much from other cultures. Metal is rare for the Svefra to obtain, so they will often buy metal objects and weapons. However, with almost everything else, they have those among them that can produce any and all sorts of trade goods and necessities.
Weapons & Equipment
Each race seems to have a specific weapon in which they revere. The Svefra are no different. Besides the usual assortment of knives, swords, and bows; if one weapon could be attributed to the Svefra it would be the cutlass. The Svefra covet them like no other, most likely preferring the curved, shorter blade to a longer, sleeker sword due to the maneuverability it gives them in confined combat. However, the Svefra will create weapons from almost anything. Belaying pins can be used in a pinch for a neat hand-to-hand weapon, while the women of the Svefra often carry weighted scarves called Atani that can be dangerous concealed weapons in a fight. Atani can be weighted only or can be edged with razors or other blades that do serious damage when swung. Another popular weapon with the Svefra are harpoons and underwater spear throwers designed for fishing. Most Svefra ships are equipped with harpoons to defend against aggressive sea creatures and other humans. The harpoons resemble crossbows and are reasonably sized according to the ship they are mounted upon. The bolts are tethered to the ship with heavy line so they can be reeled back in. Hand-held harpoons are often utilized as well while swimming under water. Spears are also popular as well as lassos.
The Svefra have their own styles of ship. These three types they craft themselves, usually on the shores of Taldera in locations where they've been shipwrighting for generations. A pod, however, can be made up of any sort of ship - most confiscated or stolen as a result of sea clashes. The Svefra are experts at ship repair and maintenance as well as very good at navigating the Suvan and knowing its currents. The Svefra spend 80% of their life on ships and about 20% on shore.
|The Casinor||A small, personal ship no longer than 30 feet with a single cabin. More than twice the size of the average rowboat, this ship is capable of traversing inland seas and coastal areas though it is unequipped to travel on the open ocean. The most common personal ship found among the Svefra. These ships are often found employing heavy harpoons for defense. Much of the free space on the ship has been converted into living quarters thus cargo is limited to 500 lbs. While it may carry a number of passengers, these boats are designed for a single person spending extended periods at sea. Crew: 1, Passengers: 5|
|The Palivar||The Palivar is the most common sailing vessel found among the Svefra. A large family vessel no larger than 80 feet long with mutliple cabins and living space, the Palivar is just a few feet smaller than the average Saique style merchant vessel. These ships are designed to comfortably house up to 10 individuals for extended lengths of time. It is most often found in the Suvan Sea. It supports 2 light mounts. Crew: 6, Passengers: 4.|
|The Navar||The Navar is the largest ship found among the Svefra. While indeed quite large, almost the size of an actual Galleon, the Navar is not a warship nor is it a cargo ship. It is designed primarily to house a number of Svefra families. That said, it is still quite an impressive sight when seen sailing on the waters of the Suvan. Over 100 feet in length and capable of carrying a small number of defensive weapons, the Navar is one of, if not the largest ship found in the Suvan Sea. It supports 2 light mounts. Crew: 25, Passengers: 25. The last known Navar was drydocked or burned at the death of the last Svefra Queen.|
The Suvan Sea is a huge body of water near the center of the continent of Mizahar in which the Svefra primarily make their home. A long, narrow inlet connects it with the sea at the Faleyk Gulf. The Suvan Sea did not exist prior to the Valterrian. Suva, the capital of the Suvan Empire, stood at this location. During the cataclysm, the city of Suva was entirely destroyed, and a crater hundreds of feet deep took its place. The crater quickly filled with water. The Suvan Sea was created by Ivak’s rage, born from the crater he made of Suvan. For years the entire sea was empty, as if nothing living felt brash enough to try the waters that had flooded the region. The Svefra claim they changed this, exploring it boldly and teasing out its secrets. The Suvan is also dotted with hundreds of islands. Ruins are scattered both above and below the sea, some of which the Svefra know the location of and their value to the world. The Suvan Sea is relatively mild all year round, with cooler weather only in the heart of winter. Since the Suvan is an inland sea, storms are rare but dangerous all the same. Storms are most common in the summer, though rains may occur in the winter and spring. The water in the inland sea is not drinkable but is less salty than open seawater.
Along with the Suvan Sea, the Svefra make their homes in the Northern and Southern Oceans as well. While far less frequent in these areas, the Svefra stil have a presence around the entire continent.
While the Svefra primarily worship Laviku and consider him their father, they also look to other deities also. Zulrav and Syna are popular as well as Leth and Lhex are worshiped. Caiyha has a great reverence among them as well as Dira and Rhaus since they love song and dance as well. Occasionally a Rhysol or Vayt follower can be found among the Svefra. Because of their love of knowledge, Eyris is well thought of as well. All in all, the Svefra are a very religious as well as superstitious. Each pod has its own set of beliefs and ways of doing things and they stick too these traditions staunchly.
A Note On Pirates
The Svefra consider themselves the true masters of the Suvan Sea. Any piracy that takes place on the Suvan Sea is staunchly frowned at by the Svefra and will result in their hunting down the trespassers and eliminating them. The Svefra consider themselves the only people eligible to prey upon the other travelers on the Suvan, and zealously guard their territory. That doesn't mean that the Svefra don't commit piracy. They do. However the quickest and easiest way to avoid getting attacked by the Svefra on the high sea is to hire the Svefra for escort or indeed contract a Svefra ship for travel. Svefra response to piracy by outsiders is often equivalent to a Nal'lyeo, though rather than a lighthearted socially pressured situation, it is often swift and violent with the Svefra pulling out all the stops and holding nothing back. They will confiscate the ship and re-purposed it to their pods' use. They will kill the pirates, feeding the bodies to their tavan. No one is excused, not even children, who get cast into the heart of the Suvan to feed the predators there. Their ships are often lighter, faster, and they know the currents and coasts of the Suvan Better than anyone else, so pirates have little chance to survive unless they are Svefra.
Active Svefra PCs
| Out of character note:
Starting Packages: Svefra characters have a third option for a starting package available to them. Rather than a home or tent/horse package, they can start with a small casinor and its equipment. Ships don't automatically come with a mounted harpoon. Harpoons for casinors cost 50 GM extra and can fire 160 feet. Bolts cost 1 GM for a bundle of 10 bolts. These are equivalent to a heavy crossbow mounted to the bow.
Tavan: Svefra characters can choose non-dire marine and coastal animals (both Mizahar unique and real life creatures) for tavan. These animals must be approximately the mean The mean is the mathematical average of a set of numbers. weight/size of this animal as its listed in the Mizahar Wiki or (if a common real life animal) as listed in a reputable scientific non-Wikipedia resource such as National Geographic. That means if a character's tavan is an animal that is commonly (not world record sizes) 3-5 feet long and 50-100 lbs of weight, their tavan size must be around 4 ft long and 75 lbs. Tavan can be made incredibly unique by type, coloring, and especially by personality. This rule is to prevent a tavan 'arms race' over who has the biggest baddest pet (insert animal here). Animals that are considered 'monstrous' must be approved via the Help Desk.