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The Dancing Dead

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Image:Scroll2.png "Dira is there, always, as a presence in the forest. In our lives. These people, they revere her and rejoice in her, as all should, but it goes even further than that. They love her."
- Anonymous Rival Clansmen

The Dancing Dead do not consider themselves as prone to violence and war as their kin amongst other clans, preferring instead to move subtly and bring death silently upon their enemies. They are often there to inspire their comrades, dancing out victories as the wardrum pounds, and rejoicing in the sacrifice of one another, and savage invaders. They are a small clan of focused numbers, heavily populated by males, so any woman born amongst them is received as a blessing of Myri.



A people of dance and song, the clan celebrates many days where the dead are honoured and respect is given to Dira, Myri, and Kihala. They will often hold a "Deathday" a year after the death of a clansmen and pass on stories to the Goddess of Death to share with their deceased relatives.

There is a specialized ritual within the clan where two of the daughters are selected to portray Before and After, Dira's jackal companions, in ceremonies involving funerals and Deathdays. These two women are selected as children of the former Before and After, or even their nieces if none have been born to them. They then undergo years of training in the art of dancing, coupled with the art of war, shadowing the former Before and After as normal jackal companions during dances until they reach adulthood. In a ritual, the former "sacrifice" themselves and present the new pair with their own guises, and the new Before and After perform until they have their own children, or able children are born within the clan, and they complete their Blooding Ritual, in which case these two will also "sacrifice" themselves, and the tradition wears on.

They practice a large amount of superstition based on their reverence for Death. All members are marked with their clan tattoo at adulthood: they are marked with the image of a skull upon their face, and as they gain more standing with Myri, the tattoo slowly gains more detail. If a member is marked by Dira as well, they will earn more tattoos to symbolize their connection with death. These members are as rejoiced as Death herself, regardless of sex, and they may choose to leave their family and serve Death. However, given the small size of this clan, most choose not to: serving Myri is their greatest honour, and they can serve Dira as they do so.

Without fail, the members of the Dancing Dead will wear the bones of fallen prey and opponents upon their forms.


"To say that she was frightening was an understatement. [...] She was donned in bones, both braided into her hair and dangling from chains about her neck. In the dim, it was hard to see why, but when she entered the light, we knew. She wore the skin of Death herself. The tattoos, they were elaborate, and they would have put fear into our hearts if we didn't know her to be one of our own people." - member of the Shorn Skulls.

Due to their training in dance, endurance, and agility, members of this clan are generally lither than their counterparts. Not always, though, as they still pride themselves on being strong enough to hold their city. Women are, of course, larger than men, but Before and After tend to keep themselves lithe and slender as opposed to bulked with muscle, as they need to be agile for their dances and able to contort in complex ways.

A member of the Dancing Dead is easily distinguished by their elaborate skeleton tattoos, especially the facial ones. Only certain members receive the tattoos on other parts of their body: Before and After, but particularly those who find themselves honoured by Dira herself. They are also heavily adorned with bones, typically engraved to keep alive the memory of what the bones used to belong to.

They arm themselves with war scythes rather than more conventional weapons, but some do prefer axes, swords, and chakram.


As will all Myrians, Myri is revered and loved beyond all else. However, the Dancing Dead give special reverence for Dira that is almost matched with their love for Myri. All else comes secondary to their two great loves, which includes all the racial deities of Myrians. They have a special love for jackals and a special loathing for Nuit.


As a clan that predated the Myrians as a whole, the Dancing Dead were a fierce and fearless tribe that inhabited the land closest to where Black Rock now sits. They were utterly in love with Dira and performed the ritual sacrifice of any who thought themselves fearless and above Dira. Their appearance was always seen as ominous, due to their tradition of donning skeletal guises, and they were said to herald death.

When Myri took Falyndar as her own, the Dancing Dead succumbed to her power and were integrated, as with everyone else, and those who resisted were sacrificed to Dira, as with all others who resisted thereafter when the Dancing Dead fell upon them.

Their numbers have never been large and often do they bear sons instead of daughters, but they are still a clan that bears some weight. Currently, they inhabit a small patch of land inside the city marked with bones.

Clan Practices

As with celebrating Deathdays as well as festivals related to Dira, the jackals, and the Omens, the Dancing Dead are practitioners of specific magics that also relate to death. Namely, they use Spiritism, but a few have been known to wield Malediction as a practice and turn it into an art form. These people are not as heavily revered as other members, but they are given special interest, as Spiritism helps to settle the souls of the deceased into Dira's grasp, and Malediction keeps alive the Legacy of the kills the clan makes.

They are known to breed jivatalus ghost dogs for their use in detecting spirits. Also, they occasionally capture and train jackals, or have them imported from other lands. Special care is given to white and black jackals.

View on Outsiders

The Dancing Dead are a largely secretive and "shy" clan that prefers to keep their practices secret from outside clans, specifically their rivals. They rarely take other clan members in, preferring to actually select husbands for their daughters, but they are willing to take in the daughters of other clans if they have deemed their own secrets safe, first.

This practice of secrecy is from their days before they became Myrians, as they were regarded as monsters and had few allies within the jungle. It was how they kept themselves alive throughout the years of war, as they preferred to die rather than betray their own, and death was gladly welcomed under instances where they were captured.

They relate under friendly terms with most other clans now, performing at funerals, but they are still very much resistant to sharing clan secrets and taking others into their homes. This lends to their aura of superstition and mystery... but under no circumstance would they turn away a Myrian in danger, or turn their back on a war.

Player Characters
heightFariFrom Taloba, Falyndar.
heightMeijaFrom Taloba, Falyndar.
heightCuicatlFrom Black Rock, Falyndar