Part 2: Fleshing Out Cultures
When does the world lore begin? This is a difficult thing to answer. Some would refer to a grand creation myth to describe the creation of the very planet in the cosmos. While an interesting opportunity to weave deep lore into the world and generate a pantheon of some sort for the sentient inhabitants to worship or fear, it’s also an opportunity to establish details you might later wish had been done differently. The creation of the physical world is less relevant overall because the setting is more about the inhabitants of the world. History, after all, is recorded by sentient beings on a world.
From this primal world, reptilian life first gained reason and intelligence. Cold-blooded, calculating, patient and cunning several distinct reptilian cultures rose and fell in power and influence. Broken between distinctly lizard and serpentine lineages two notable cultures evolved. The first and most organized of these was the Naga Imperium spanning many decades. This era was marked by bloody conflict between the servitor Nagaji armies and the less civilized lizardfolk tribes. Eventually, with the assistance of Vishkanya Oracles known as Medusa, the Naga rulers were defeated and their forces scattered. The lizardfolk ruled as the dominant sentient species for several thousand years. The Nagaji became small, scattered tribes in quiet corners far from their ancient lizardfolk enemies.
The Waer are planar wayfinders wandering the cosmos with no known home of their own. They seem to live outside time as they never appear to age physically and no one has ever witnessed Waer children. They arrived on Andrus on behalf of an oppressed culture looking for a home; the Fae. Once the Waer reported their discovery of Andrus to the Fae, breaches connected to the elemental planes allowed the nomads to reach Andrus and begin settling. Some Waer remained on Andrus observing, recording and occasionally influencing the evolution of the new world.
The Fae are actually a single bloodline enslaved and subjugated by more powerful elemental creatures on the elemental planes. After many generations the Fae began to adapt to the raw energies found on their now native elemental plane. This created four distinct branches of Fae. Once the Fae reached Andrus they began to settle areas beyond the scaly tribe lands typically favoring regions rich in their elemental affinities. The Fae quickly out numbered the slow breeding lizardfolk and the scaly influence began to dwindle from their former glory.
Another arrival around this time was the Tauran Clans. Hailing from a savage, unknown realm their size and warlike culture assured they could take whatever lands necessary. Little is known of their origins other than they revere complex patterns known as labyrinths often referring to the Great Labyrinth like many cultures refer to the afterlife. A distinct sub-race within the tauran clans is a monastic order known only as the Yikaria. They are less savage and decidedly more sinister in nature. They advise tauran clan chiefs and possess strange supernatural abilities. The Yikaria seem to serve some unknown dark power. They seek out ancient lore and powerful magic in this power’s name.
As stated in the previous entry for this series, humans are not native to this world. They were slaves to world traveling masters seeking worlds to plunder for natural and magical resources.
The Kyne Daas were the master’s trusted guard. Their unwavering loyalty was key to their master’s control. The Daas combat discipline and generations of serving their masters proved to be a pivotal resource during the uprising.
The Ekhari were ruled by powerful merchant houses on their home world. They provided the economic backbone to what was harvested and how it was accounted. The Ekhari were afforded significant freedoms to get their tasks complete. Without the Ekhari leadership and planning the battle to overthrow the masters couldn’t have been accomplished.
The Ustara came from a world of vast forests and mountains where they developed complex thinking, deep philosophies and connections to natural creatures. They became the law keepers, librarians and animal handlers for the masters. Their bond with the dragons was pivotal in the war for freedom.
The Illiwyth were discovered on a soggy planet covered in rivers, seas and stormy oceans. Their endurance and adaptability proved a valuable asset as their masters explored new worlds seeking resources to exploit.
These are the key summaries for the major cultures inhabiting Andrus.