Skrāl

The Skrāl of the mountains of Ralstaa are some of the last civilized and least populace of the beastmen of Allornus. Living in remote, isolated communities high on mountain plateaus and caves, they have a reputation for being savages and bandits, and indeed many groups lend credence to such accusations. Alone amongst the mortal races, they have mastered flight, but this has left them bereft of the trappings of civilization that other races have developed, and their simple tribal society has receded in the face of Ral settlement.

Names

Skrāl (Self), Birdmen (Ralstaa), Garuda (Iria), Rashkar (Ghania and Haedrasia)

Potency


Visage

Skrāl stand just over seven feet tall, and their bodies and lithe and exceptionally long-limbed. From the knees to the shoulders and neck the Skrāl's bodies are identical to that of a landsman, and devoid of feathers or hair. From the knees down their legs are elongated and plumed, ending in wicked eagle-talons. Their arms are also exceptionally long, and after the upper arm, which is feathered and narrow, the arm quickly becomes a huge wing, though at the point where the wing joints there is a small, three fingered hand that they can use to grip. The wings can be neatly folded down to hang at the side, and the feathers flex backward so as not to drag on the ground when standing erect, but do not tuck into the flanks like those of a bird.

From the neck up the heads of the Skrāl are those of a bird of prey, with hooked beaks, orange eyes mounted above the beak, and full plumage. Skrāl warriors and leaders enhance this by wearing feather headdresses to make their plumage even more fierce. Colouration of the skin is usually pale, and feathers range from a dark chocolate brown, to gold, to red-brown and occasionally blood red. Skrāl usually also have lighter plumage and markings on the underside of the neck and wing. Colouration indicates to which clan an individual belongs. Since Skrāl shun clothing other than head wear the difference between sexes is obvious, though when they live amongst landsmen they will often don a loincloth for the sake of their hosts.

Aetherial

Unlike the other myr, who have their own languages, the Skrāl speak the language of birds, meaning that they communicate in the language of beasts, and though they are no friend to many of the wild animals of the Starwood, they communicate regularly with birds from all over. The incredible strength required to lift them off the ground means that Skrāl are surprisingly strong, but also exceptionally light and fragile. They have eyes that can stare directly at the sun without being dazzled, and can also make out minute details miles below. They can sleep while precariously perched and of course they are able to take to the air and glide as high as any eagle, though some choose to ride on the backs of the massive ikars native to the knives.

Craft


Cunning

Skrāl are uncivilized, clannish creatures, certainly the least advanced and least intelligent of the myr, but they are also some of the most spiritual. Staunch and passionate believers in their own religions or in any they are converted to, the Skrāl will hungrily learn all they can about their chosen Divhi. Many believe it is because they fly closer to the sky than men who must walk of the earth, and see more of the majesty that the Divh do. Skrāl have no real concept of status, but some few individuals earn the admiration of their clans by some great deed, and the tribe insists that they wear a distinctive headdress to mark their great honour. As a result they often fail to understand the cultural structure of other races. They also have no real concept of property aside from those things that belong to their Divhi, and this also often causes conflict. Not proud creatures, when they simply do not understand other races Skrāl tend to just fly away.

Social

Skrāl live in a commune, a clan where all property is communal, usually based in a large mountain cave or other sheltered, rocky place. They are fiercely territorial, and do believe quite firmly in clan property however, often clashing violently with other clans, or large flying predators like griffins, over tracts of hunting land. Their characteristic pommelled spears can be used both as a lance when swooping down or thrown at the ground, making their clashes frequently fatal, and their attacks quick and unexpected.

Civilization

Skrāl live in aeries high in the mountains around the starwood region. Usually the clan will find a large cave or wooded plateau, where they can have some shelter from above and below, and build simple platforms and woven canopies that hang from treetops. A Skrāl usually carries all of his possessions slung on a leather baldric around his shoulders, but those who have taken to living nearer to civilized regions have acquired more things, and will sometimes have a man-made lockbox or other piece of furniture that they can reasonably carry to their elevated homes. They favour building in high treetops, but in regions prone to high winds many tribes hollow out large, dead trees instead for a more stalwart shelter. Between their skilled working with wooden tools or weapons and fine leathers and hides, Skrāl often trade for more exotic items with landsmen, but the tribe usually be self-sufficient, and only luxuries are acquired in this manner.

Language


Places

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Names

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Statistics


Talents
Fast +4 | Graceful +4 | Strong +2 | Perceptive +1 | Tough -3 | Hale -2 | Clever -2 | Knowledgeable -2 | Brave -2
Unique Abilities
Beak and Talon | Flyer | Hawk Eyed |
Ageing
Infant 0-3 years -5 to all Talents except Lucky
Child 4-11 years -3 to all Talents except Lucky
Adolescent 12-16 years -1 to Tough, Clever and Knowledgeable
Adult 17-39 years none
Middle-aged 40-59 years -1 to Fast, Hale and Strong
Old 60-69 years -2 to all Physical Talents, -1 to Knowledgeable
Venerable 70+ years -3 to all Physical Talents, -2 to all Mental Talents
Basics Variables
Morphology Bipedal Height 6'0" + Size' + 1d3' - 1d3'
Diet Omnivorous Weight 100lbs + (Sizelbs x5) + (Brawnlbs x3) + 1d10lbs - 1d10lbs
Cycle Diurnal Gender standard
Prime Sense Vision

Beak and Talon

Though the Skrāl prefer spears for hunting, they do have vicious bird-of-prey beaks and talons. If a birdman wants to use either to inflict Physical Damage then the damage type becomes Wounding.

Flyer

The Skrāl are unique amongst the surviving Myr, in that they can fly. They are large, so they are more awkward and tire more quickly than their smaller raptor cousins. Generally speaking they can fly at the speed that they would be able to sprint, with the agility of a man at full sprint, and with similar exertion to a light jog.

Hawk Eyed

Skrāl can see at tremendously long distances, able to focus on small detail at more than five times the distance of a man, their peripheral vision is excellent, and they deal with bright light far better than other races can. Skrāl can usually ignore the first three penalty dice to seeing at distance, and the first associated with peripheral vision or bright light.