Races and Creatures
Rhadixe is also inhabited by a variety of intelligent nonhuman beings:
- Kimerae is the term used to refer collectively to six species of magical creatures. All kimerae possess some degree of intelligence, but are limited in their ability to communicate with humans; they are telepathic, but communicate in images and emotions rather than words. Each of the six Kimerae was designed by the Archon Sekiro-Basti to assist humans as the Tenebrae were setting up their own society. Accordingly, these creatures are traditionally considered sacred by Tenebrae culture, and can only be sacrificed during dedicated ceremonies, so that priests can ensure that no part of the animal is wasted. Each creature is also associated with a particular style of vindika fighting, a martial art that was originally taught to the Tenebrae by their daemon allies.
- Resembles a domestic cat with the wings of a bird on its back. Coloration pattern varies widely, from plain tabby to bright colors of exotic birds.
Tasks: They are primarily companions, similar to regular cats
Uses: Potion ingredients (claws, blood) - happily, there is no need to kill simurghs to obtain these ingredients. In the past, they were sometimes killed for their fur or feathers (i.e. for use in fashion), eyes (potion ingredient) or bones (for crafting magical artifacts, e.g. wands, amulets) but this has become taboo in modern times.
- Resembles a large, black dog with six eyes like an insect's.
Tasks: Tracking, hunting, battle
Uses: Potion ingredients (eyes, blood, claws, fangs), crafting of magical artifacts
- A "dark" unicorn covered in a combination of mammalian fur and insectine chitin-armor; its horn is more like that of a beetle than that of a grazing animal.
Tasks: Transportation, bearing burdens
Uses: Food (milk & meat), clothing (hide: leather, fur: fashion, chitin: armor), potion ingredients (blood, horn), crafting of magical artifacts
- A gigantic, winged, fire-breathing reptile.
Tasks: Long-distance transportation, warfare
Uses: Clothing (hide & scales: armor), potion ingredients (eyes, blood, organs), crafting of magical artifacts
- A bat-like creature with compound eyes and colorful wings.
Tasks: Carrying messages, delivering small objects, spying
Uses: Food (eggs), potion ingredients (eyes, wings, fangs), crafting of magical artifacts
- A human-sized reptile with a serpentine body, eight legs, and the power to paralyze with its stare.
Tasks: Guards taboo places, used in interrogations by the Inquisition
Uses: Clothing (hide & scales: armor, skull: used to make the Grand Inquisitor's mask), potion ingredients (scales, claws, eyes, fangs, venom), crafting of magical artifacts
- Like humans, kimerae consist of a material body, an aetherial body, and a soul. Hence, they can live as material creatures on Rhadixe or as aetherials in the upper worlds, and their material bodies can become possessed by other aetherials of various kinds. Since the daemons designed the kimerae themselves, they have a much easier time speaking clearly through possessed kimerae than through humans, so this has long been their prefered practice.
- The fortunes of all kimerae have declined significantly ever since magic became scarce in Rhadixe, as these creatures cannot flourish if their magic is being constantly stripped away. A few of each kind live amongst humans in Methakasha, and can be found wild in the forests and mountains surrounding that city, but they are otherwise extinct by modern times.
- Faeries are insubstantial, translucent, ghost-like creatures made of pure faera. They arise spontaneously when there is a high concentration of faera (i.e. free-floating magic) in an environment. A particular place can thus become known for the presence of faeries, but each individual faery is an ephemeral being that comes and goes. Faeries can also be called into existence or dispelled back into faera through the practice of witchcraft.
- Like kimerae, faeries can only communicate telepathically in pictures and emotions. The appearance of a faery is variable between individuals, and even shifts from moment-to-moment in a single individual. Often, they are humanoid, androgynous, with wing-like protrusions (i.e. sometimes actual insectine wings, but sometimes more fantastical features such as aquatic fins or vegetative leaves/petals), but they can also take on the form of various animals appropriate to the faery's present environment (e.g. a deer in the forest vs. a frog in the swamp). Greater size in a faery is indicative of greater power. Faeries can be further subdivided according to the kind of faera they arise from:
- Neutral faera (silver): Humanoid faeries are called sylphs, bestial faeries are called baku.
- Fire-aligned faera (red): Humanoid faeries are called jhinns, bestial faeries are called efrits.
- Air-aligned faera (yellow): Humanoid faeries are called apsaras, bestial faeries are called raiju.
- Earth-aligned faera (green): Humanoid faeries are called knomes, bestial faeries are called yakshas.
- Water-aligned faera (blue): Humanoid faeries are called naia, bestial faeries are called cantados.
- Will-bound faera (violet): Humanoid faeries are called grines, bestial faeries are called gremalins.
- Faeries were once common throughout both Rhadixe and the upper worlds. Environmental destruction - whether for the express purpose of harvesting the magic that sustained the faeries, or incidental to industrial development - has made them rare by the present day. As disembodied spirits, faeries can gain a material body (whether human or otherwise) by possession, but only for a short period of time. A faery can also fuse itself to the soul of a human being, creating a paeri (e.g. Kiyoko Toubai) but this requires very special circumstances - such fusions rarely succeed.
- Fiends are often confused with daemons by uninformed human inhabitants of Rhadixe, since both types of creature have a negative reputation in the Righteous religion of the Celesti. But fiends are in fact a completely distinct type of creature from daemons. Whereas daemons are native to Codixe and seek to inspire creative and constructive behavior amongst humans, fiends are native to the lower worlds (Rhadixe and Qliphixe) and are irrational spirits of destruction. Their genesis lies in the Abyss, an entropic force that opposes the Origin. Fiends thus arise in places and situations where the presence of negative events and emotions has bred miasma, a "corrupt" equivalent of faera. There are four main types of fiend, each of which is the abyssally-corrupted version of some other kind of creature:
- An intangible being, possessing a soul and aetherial body, that has been corrupted by the power of the Abyss. Most ghosts are humans or animals suffering in the aftermath of a particularly traumatic death. Ghosts who were once human are capable of communicating telepathically in the form of intelligible language, but typically their minds are so damaged that they mostly just gibber and/or rage incoherently. Ghosts will also frequently engage in repetitive, compulsive, irrational behaviors, and are prone to random violence against both themselves and anyone who approaches them.
- An intangible being, made of miasma. Ghoblins are thus the corrupt equivalent of faeries. Typically they have an inhuman appearance that is to some extent insectine and/or deformed. Like faeries, they are incapable of language and communicate telepathically via images and emotions. They therefore tend to swamp anyone they encounter with intense feelings of fear, rage, sadness or other negative emotions. Individual ghoblins, like faeries, are usually ephemeral, but they are still dangerous because they tend to appear en masse, particularly in places where atrocities occurred in the past.
- A being of flesh-and-blood whose soul has been seduced by the power of the Abyss, such that they generate miasma instead of faera. This may happen because a person is being haunted by some sort of fiend, or it can also happen on its own if the person is in extreme distress. Ghouls look like the same kind of creature they were before becomming corrupted, but sickly/corpselike, with their appearance worsening the longer they have been a ghoul and the more corrupted they become. Becoming a ghoul is thus a sort of magical sickness, and if left untreated, a person who contracts this condition will typically waste away within a short period of time, becoming a ghost upon their death.
- A being of flesh-and-blood whose soul has been forcibly corrupted by the power of the Abyss, via fusion with a ghoblin. A ghaki is thus the corrupt version of a paeri. To maintain the cohesion of such a being, the ghoblin is dependent upon its human host to keep it fed with negative energy. Ghaki thus are at minimum psychic vampires, and in many cases literal vampires as well, inasmuch as they need to ingest blood in order to absorb the faera from it (which they then corrupt into miasma).
- Amongst the Tenebrae, there is a lineage of ghaki called the Hive of Sinistre. The Hive effectively passes itself off as a group of decadent Tenebrae nobles, and has formed a sort of elite secret society amongst the Tenebrae for many centuries. The Hive has an arrangement with the necromancers, enabling discreet disposal of the bodies of their victims.
Last update: December 22, 2012
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