[Pykanthrope – People of Spiritual Fire]
A broad shouldered man stood with his sword in his right hand – a short simple blade, equally narrow along the entire blade and tapering to a fine point at the tip, all the while having a slight curve to the cutting edge. As he waves his other hand over the length of the sword it becomes lined with fire. He charges into the fray cutting down a few enemies before engaging into a duel. His opponent, a man of a tall slender build raised his sword to parry the strike. The broad shouldered man sent out a blast of flame from his left hand and left his opponent smoldering in the dirt. “That’ll teach you about messing with the Champion of the Lykausts!”
A slim woman of an olive complexion wearing a slender graceful dress, made out of some kind of silk, began descending the staircase into the large hall before her. Lifting her dress so she could move comfortably without tripping she walked into the hall, and then stood at the door to the ballroom. Pausing to summon forth a little fire she was announced to the room, “The Lady Miradel, of the House Mynn.” The Crowd in the room turned to watch her enter, flames surrounding her in aura.
Blasting fire from both hands, Pyren covered the group as they passed through the gauntlet. All these are examples of the Canthrope, or more properly the Pykanthrope. Hailing from the richly-fertile volcanic continent of Ignaval this race of fire-wielding spiritualists is a force to be reckoned with.
Humanoid-Elemental. The Average Canthrope has an olive skin tone, stands about 5’6”-6’1” and weighs roughly 120-180lbs, with females usually being a little lighter. That being said a more medium skin tone is also quite common, and some Canthropes can weigh more than this.
Eye color varies depending on which region of Ignaval the individual comes from. Canthropes from the north more commonly have Violet, Orange, Yellow, and Blue colored eyes, and Canthropes from the East typically have Yellow, Brown, Green, Gray, Hazel, and Silver eyes. Whereas Canthropes from the South have Red, Black, Gray, Silver, and Hazel eyes; and the individuals from the Western portion of Ignaval have White, Silver, Green, Violet, and Orange eyes.
Canthropes believe that tattoos can actually harm a person’s Spiritual Energy or “Aki.” Usually when a tattoo is used, it is for the purpose of marking known criminals and as punishments for dishonorable acts. In addition, piercings of any kind are believed to detract from the natural beauty of the individual and as such is frowned upon in Canthrope Society.
Canthrope culture is defined by its spiritual, honor-based, and family-centric society. Each of these aspects plays a key role in the life of every Canthrope, from the peasant farmer, to the Emperor himself. Because of their emphasis on honor, the worst crimes are those that bring dishonor to your family.
The Age of majority is 17. Often times though, one is considered an adult at age 13 and would be considered eligible for certain responsibilities, such as ruling a nation or province with the aid of an advisor that has less power than the regent did during regency. Also at 13, all Canthropes, regardless of station or gender receive military training as part of their education. During this stage of life, it is customary for Canthropes to get married. The majority of the Nobility has pre-arranged marriages that are the sealing function of alliances and deals; however, most Canthropes have a strong desire for love in their relationships. This is due to the values ingrained in their society. Honor, Courage, and Family are particularly appropriate for this practice.
The Canthrope Family consists of the Head of House (usually the oldest Male, but sometimes a younger male or older female may take the position); his wife and sons, and their wives and children. Often times up to four generations are living in the same superstructure, with wings being added for each individual family unit. In addition many Noble Families have had the same families be servants to them for many years (and in some cases, centuries). A servant family is under the protection of the Noble Family it serves and relies upon them for their support in terms of housing, food, and livelihood. Serving a Noble Family is one of the highest honors a commoner can have. The Connection between servant and Lord goes even deeper than it might appear.
Canthropes are tolerant of women in positions of power, though men are far more common to see holding titles. Examples of powerful women include Aseira Loyter, the consort of the Emperor Pyreth. She through her station was able to secure her family’s control of the islands in the east of Ignaval post-War of Ashes.
Canthrope cities feature large market places in the center, and large farming communities outside the walls. Banks, Inns, Shops of every kind, and Homes are common place to see throughout the city. The crown jewel of the Empire is the Temple of Pyrus, a city carved into the inside of long-since dormant volcano it shows off the height of Canthrope engineering, and it comes fully stocked with all the normal locations that might be found in a standard city. Moreover, arson is considered more of a compliment, as opposed to a crime. Fire setting shows beauty in the object it burns, rebirth and rebuilding in all.
Canthropes by far have the shortest lifespan out of all the sentient races, leading them to act impulsively and out of emotion rather than reason. They often act in their best interests, but not necessarily everyone’s best interests. This gives them the reputation of being fiery and passionate.
The tongue of the Canthropes is Pytokau or, as it translates in the common, Burning Tongue. According to its speakers, it has many phrases that describe the sounds of fire, crackling and popping. Upon closer inspection it appears as though the sounds are merely inflections designed to highlight the tone of the speaker. For example a sarcastic remark may feature both a sarcastic tone, and a popping inflection if the speaker is being facetious, or with a crackling inflection when speaking to a loved one about a private joke. When written Pytokau uses a simple character set, very common among the more human races.
Canthropes believe that their control over fire was given to them by Pyrus as a gift for their devotion to Nüré’i. Volcia has gifted them fertile lands to grow their people on and a vibrant landscape. Xeratos has gifted them knowledge of the sun and the warmth of their hearths and lands. Spiritual Leaders include the Oracles and the Emperor himself. Pyrus, Volcia, and Xeratos are the preferred Dragon Lords – seen as a boon from Nüré’i. Oracles who have received their gifts directly from God, teach the people about the Return of the Dragon Lords and the Coming of the Orange Dragon with Violet-Eyes. The Religion also holds that the Emperor is appointed servant of God, and caretaker of the people. Canthropes believe that to honor Nüré’I, one must live and Honorable life and devote yourself to your family, faith, and ruler.
Canthropes have small shrines inside their homes where the family (often many generations) prays together. Each village also supports a priest (scholars of the written prophecies) that teaches and uplifts the spirituality of the whole community. The Temple of Pyrus is a Holy City, also a stronghold for the Canthropes. This is where Pyrus supposedly brought the first of the Canthropes to, where they were gifted the “Aki” and the Control over fire.
Religious ceremonies for the Canthropes include a highly ritualized funeral service in which a portion of the ashes of ones ancestors (stored in a communal urn for each house/family) is spread over the remains of the deceased. The body is then cremated and a portion of the ash is collected and placed into the Ancestral Urn, the remainder is scattered to the wind. This represents the belief that the Canthropes hold that ever though their family may no longer be on the earth, they are all tied together in the heavens.
Another ceremony is the Dance of the Phoenix and the Dragon. It is a duet of woven fire to produce a retelling of how the land became so fertile. It later became symbolic of the fall and the rise of the Empire of Ashes.
The adherents to this faith believe that the “Divine” gifts of the Canthropes are actually a curse given them by the Dragon Lords. The religion holds that this curse marks the Canthropes as “Corrupted Souls” and that the Dragon Lords have in turn become corrupted, else why they remain absent. “The only good Canthrope is one that is already dead, or nearly so,” stated the founder of Dyrkism “the Emperor.” They believe that they will be rewarded in the next life for being the scourge of the Canthropes. (This faith was born on the eve of the Genocide of the Canthropes and died very quickly only three decades later. However, there are still a few humans who hold these beliefs).
The believers of this faith, the Selykites, follow the Dragon Lords and the Oracles by believing that the Dragon with the Violet-Eyes will come one day to restore both balance to the world, and renew it to its original state, before the corruption entered. Ascribes divinity more towards the Dragon Lords, believing that Nüré’i is actually a Powerful Angel in the Heavens, but not an Omnipotent force. This faith also holds that marriage between siblings is divinely appointed – just as the first mortals were united. (This faith maintains a strong presence in the islands to the east of mainland Ignaval, even after their land is ceded to the Canthropes).
A Kænist believes much of the same as the Canthropes, but rejects the belief of the Dragon with Violet-Eyes. They also believe that the Canthrope Oracles are merely a way that they can keep undue influence over others, including their own people. They hold that Nüré’i just does not speak to anyone anymore more, but prophesied of the time when the Dragon Lords would return.
The Fyrenist movement shares the majority of their beliefs with their Canthrope allies. However, their main difference is that the hold that Oracles, while very gifted, are not needed. They believe that each individual is their own Oracle and that there is no need for an established clerical order.
The Zeirites hold that the Dragon Lords exert too much influence upon Mortals, trapping them, preventing them from reaching their full potential. According to the Zeirites, the Demon Lords hold the key to true freedom, achieving your full potential, and they provide ways to break free from the rules of the unjust. Believers hold that the Demon Lords chose Zeira Black Flame and her many, many children to free the people from this illusion. They deny the Oracles, claiming that they are just another tool the Dragon Lords use to unjustly Lord over the people. They believe that Zeira and her children contain “Holy Blood” and that is must stay within the faith – marrying close relatives when needed.
The Kyrites believe that to counter the spread of the wicked ideology of the Canthropes, the Demon Lords (true advocates for freedom and happiness) sent two Oracles – of their own blood, two brothers. These two “True-Oracles” began to teach about the Demon Lords, the correct way to live and what they offer. They taught that Man’s purpose in this life is to fulfill all of their own desires and that nothing was a sin. Rruin Emperorsson and Flynn Flynnsson also taught that their blood is “Holy” and that all should desire to unite with it, even if it means marrying close relative and having multiple wives.
Thank you for taking the time to check out this information regarding one of my worlds. Don't forget to comment and rate the post. Let me know what you liked and what else you would like to see about the Canthropes. I love talking about my world and it is my dream to make it come alive for all. Thanks once again.
Welcome to Technology Spotlight where I, the HighChronicler reveal a piece of technology used in one of my worlds. The intended purpose of the spotlights is to show people the worlds in my mind, and get them to connect with how they work prior to stories being shared. I hope to be able to help others understand the worlds I see within my stories. Today we are looking at Frost Crystals - a crystal found in the frozen tundra of Tergna Prima.
- Technology: Frost Crystals
- Location: Frûzdhren (Tergna Prima)
- Components: Crystalized Frost Dragon Breath
- Primary Use: Magical Artifacts, specifically staves
- Secondary Use: Ceremonial items
No one truly knows how long the naturally occurring Frost Crystals have been around. Some speculate that the oldest crystals are from the time of the Dragon Lords; although, Ice Elf Scientists have yet to confirm this belief. Their use in Ice Elf technology is extensive, but few outside the tight-knit community of Elves have ever learned of the existence of the Crystals, let alone their uses.
The crystals are formed from the dying breath of a Frost Dragon. As such, the crystal retains a portion of that Dragon’s soul inside the crystalline structure. This leads to the crystals being semi-sentient and at the most basic level aware of the events surrounding it. There are those who believe the crystals are related to the Aura Crystals of Dekurem, which also are aware of their surroundings. This is pure speculation and wholly unfounded. Unlike the Aura Crystals, the Frost Crystals cannot show their knowledge with their users. This marks a great difference between the two crystals.
The crystals remained largely undiscovered for much of history until the pilgrimage of the Ice Elves who were fleeing persecution from the various factions of Elves forming at the time of the Second Sundering. The Elves came to Frûzdhren and settled near the North Pole of Tergna Prima - building a small network of cities connected together. The temperatures were frigid and harsh, but the Elves natural proclivity with Magic saw them change and adapt to their new environment. This is when they were able to find the first of the Frost Crystals.
Many of the primitive human tribes living near the tundra suspect this is where Ice Magic originated, but Ice Elves deny this rumor. They say that the Crystals only served to awaken their true powers at that time and that the magic came from within. A few notable humans tried to seize crystals, but they were unsuccessful in obtaining any powers. Since that time Frost Crystals have been used to a great extent by the Ice Elves in nearly all aspects of their life.
When the Ice Elves first came to find the Frost Crystals, they began to use them to decorate their staffs as symbols of rank and prestige. Over time as their skill and proficiency with the newly discovered Ice Magic increased, they noticed that the Crystals served as amazing instruments in channeling their powers. They were not required to wield the new art of combat, but the crystals greatly enhanced their natural abilities. The high ranking members of the society got more crystals to enhance their own power further. This allowed them to maintain a high social status.
Eventually, they discovered that they could shape the crystal into solid structures. They created thirteen solid crystal staffs which ultimately lead to the creation of the Noble Council. The uses of the Crystals were soon also spread to ceremonial objects such as crowns or jewels meant to symbolize the Ice Elf people as a whole.
The Ice Elves rarely ventured out of their great Citadel. When they did, rumors followed them everywhere especially about the rare and valuable Frost Crystals. The Ice Elves would trade much of their other technology to the humans in order to track down more of the crystals. This lead to the influx of wealth among the otherwise poor villages, and to the spread of other technology in the regions the Ice Elves visited.
In time, even the staffs would be overshadowed by the creation of the Frozen Fusion Reactors. As a key ingredient for the powerful energy producing reaction, the Frost Crystal became ever important to the defense and protection of the realm. Soon the Ice Elves, and to an extent the residents of all of Frûzdhren, became the only people in Tergna Prima to have such power. The Frozen Fusion Reactor was eventually able to be miniaturized, and it powered firearms that could be used without gunpowder. These weapons greatly enhanced the capabilities of the Ice Elf forces in the great wars.
Welcome to Technology Spotlight where I, the HighChronicler reveal a piece of technology used in one of my worlds. The intended purpose of the spotlights is to show people the worlds in my mind, and get them to connect with how they work prior to stories being shared. I hope to be able to help others understand the worlds I see within my stories. Today we are looking at Obsyron, a metal-alloy found in the world of Tergna Prima.
- Technology: Obsyron
- Location: Ignaval (Tergna Prima)
- Components: Iron, Carbon, Obsidian, Magma
- Primary Use: Swords and other bladed weapons
- Secondary Use: Magical Artifacts
Obsyron is an iron-obsidian alloy created by the people of Ignaval to solve a problem they were having with using obsidian or iron as their metals of choice in bladed weaponry. Prior to the innovation of Obsyron, warring factions within the civilization used iron or obsidian as their primary material in forging weapons.
One of the problems that the obsidian users faced was the brittleness of the material. Sure it was razor sharp and could leave some pretty gruesome wounds on those who crossed paths with these blades shaped from the volcanic glass. If one struck your blade against any solid armor, it would shatter most likely maiming you more than your target. This is why some preferred the more sturdy Iron in their blades. While the material was stronger it could not hold as sharp as an edge and had trouble piercing the heaviest armor.
These issues lead to the development of alternate weapons and fighting styles that are seen even today among the people. One of these styles revolved around using the brittle yet sharp obsidian as arrowheads which upon impact with anything more solid than skin would shatter; either peppering the eyes with tiny shards of obsidian or sending shrapnel through the veins of those who were unfortunate enough to be struck by one these fierce arrows.
Another type of arrowhead developed alongside the standard obsidian tipped arrow was the less effective stone or iron tipped arrow. However, there was a third arrowhead in use at this time another one made mostly of obsidian, with a major twist. The arrowhead was hollow and filled with gunpowder. At the tip lay a piece of flint so that when the arrow struck, true or not, a small explosion would ignite, resulting in injury to those near the center. A secondary effect was creating a diversion as the native people of Ignaval are highly resistant to getting burned.
The true pinnacle of this era of innovation though was the development of the aforementioned Obsyron which combined the best elements of the two prevailing materials and had very few weaknesses.
Obsyron was developed by a family who spent much of their time mining the mountains in search of new materials to replace the troublesome ones. Eventually, due to the experiments of one alchemist, Syrion, a retainer of the Mynn family, the perfect solution was found. He discovered that if you heat obsidian inside the magma chamber of a dormant volcano that it returns to a liquid form and can then be used to liquefy an equal amount of iron. Once cooled the substance would not break under any degree of normal pressure, nor even by falling down the side of a mountain. This was the first problem with the new material. Once it cooled, it could not be broken or have its shape in the slightest. This meant that they had to forge their weapons while the metal was still molten.
They solved this by creating another batch of the liquid obsidian-iron mixture and poured it into molds of swords and other blades. This created extremely well-balanced and strong weapons, but they had no edge to them at this point. Sharpening them was not easy task. It took the development of a new type of grindstone in order to give this newfound alloy, Obsyron (literally translated as forged black metal), an edge. The time and process of developing this new metal was well worth it though, it changed the face of the bladed weapons on Ignaval permanently, and it gave rise to one of the great houses of the Imperial period.
Today, Ignaval shares its new metal with the rest of the world, but it retains the secret to its exact process of refining. There are hundreds of thousands of Obsyron blades in the world, and it is said that each blade will last for a thousand years. The black-hued alloy of obsidian and iron has garnered legend status from much of the people. Uses for this mighty material are seemingly endless as new ways to utilize its potential are unlocked by the year. There is talk of a machine powered with steam using gears of obsyron within its internal system to increase its lifespan. But, these rumors are largely unfounded.