Sat Aug 20, 2011, 3:16 PM
Powers: Aefan can control plants. There are three classifications: Vines, Flowers, and Trees. Read below for more information!
Harmonious and elegant, the Aefan have a reputation as being arrogant and aloof to strangers.
Their queen has a reputation as some kind of temptress whose beauty ensnares strangers' hearts. Due to this, traveling to Central is somewhat rare (and considered 'dangerous' to men).
* The stereotype is that Aefan hate to talk about themselves and refuse to dispense even the lightest of information in a straight manner, making talk with them a game of implicit guesswork. Relationships are supposed to intuit when there is a problem the other party is keeping to themselves. Their motto might be thought of as "Work is best done in secret. If it fails, no one will know. If it succeeds, it will surprise everyone." Of course, this stereotype does not have to be present in your own oc.*
During the Age of the Lost, the Aefan crossed the grueling desert of Jayca, guided by a great bird and the shifting of the winds. After wandering for a long time, they at last came upon the first Tree of the world, the EverTree, surrounded by the teeth of the Earth, a wall of sheer, white rock that protected it from the winds when the tree was a seedling. In that first age, it was still a lone tree, much smaller than it is now. That tree bent its branches down to their leader and taught her the languages of the plants, every possible type. She passed the knowledge on to her people as needed, and they spread across the land, carrying seeds from the EverTree with them. They turned those seeds into trees meant for housing and tools needed to work the land. It did not take long for a full forest to grow around the EverTree, and with it birds started to roost in the higher branches, and forest beasts started to walk the open areas beneath. They advanced as a singular people under the rule of their royal family, who only advised on their people's actions, using the words of the EverTree as guidance.
It was much the same, a singular clan of peoples under their illustrious leader, that found them at the start of the Age of Conflict. Central was affected perhaps the most terribly, for they were disorganized and easily confused, and their trees were turned against them. They huddled by the EverTree, the only untaintable one, and were saved when at last the cobbler Aefan returned with the armies and power of the Sacred Hammer, which cured the trees of their darkness. Thus freed, the Aefan armored their war birds and took to the skies in support of the others. After the Shadow War, they learned to build ships and founded the three clans (Jayca, L'Mare, and Central) under control of the royal family in order to advance their country in similar manners to the other civilizations. They warred occasionally over dominance of the sea. However, they did not know of the presence of the Heuma Magi until they publicly made themselves known, and at that time they were sick of war. They were the first to accept Wenstir's mediating powers.
In the Age of Progress, the Aefan started to create other clans, of which now there are many scattered amongst the three main ones. These clans hold much autonomy and do not work directly for the royal family, and the royal family does not wish to force their own people to support them, so they are let be. During this time, they also advanced greatly in glassworks and, in response to the Shadow War, spread the Ethil flower (which glows when awoken) throughout their kingdom.
Now, in the Age of the Spiral, Central has become more insular, focusing on keeping their own techniques private and controlled even though they continue with a tradition of traveling to other countries in order to learn. Their queen, Runesis, is said to have a close relationship with the It Imlouran queen, Mellia, whom she met soon after the young queen took the throne. Indeed, Central and It Imlour have the strongest and most stable alliance of all the countries.
Central Kingdom proper is a forest, a huge dome with the central trees taller than the outer edge. The capital is in the center, where the ruler abides at the base of the EverTree. Weather is temperate and mild, kept cool by the shade of the trees.
The eastern side devolves from the great deciduous inner trees into stickier coniferous trees until it reaches the ocean, which is edged by cliffs. L'Mare Port is the most famous city of that region. Weather is typically less consistent - a little more extreme in both cold and hot - than the Central region.
The western edge of the forest whittles away into smaller and scrawnier trees, slowly drying out until they are replaced by dry plains that lead to a huge desert (the Jayca Desert). Weather is just hot there.
There are a few mountains, low and not particularly outstanding, to the southwest of the capitol. They are the roosting grounds of some of the largest birds in the world, including the Crested Quigan, a bird large and fierce that will only befriend the royal family. (One of them might be a sleeping volcano, too |D ).
1) Aefan live about twice as long as the other races (oldest ever was 131 years — average is about 100). They rarely have children; their bodies can only bear a child once every 5 years (though they don't choose to bear them so often, usually). The first 15-20 years of their life, they grow at the same rate as the other races, and then their body slows down - it is after they are ~20 that they can start bearing children.
2) Taught by the EverTree, Aefan can "awaken" one of the "silent ones" (plants) and have them act according to their will by speaking a special language. Learning this language requires years of studying and practice to fully master — and there are many different languages.
For now, only learning one is allowed. The languages of Vine, Flower and Tree are your selections.
Force-growing a plant is allowed but doing so has ramifications.
Check out the site for specific spells!
1) Language of the Vine
The binding plant, best used to trip up pursuers or create nets or barriers. They can also be used as non-held whips, though their power is perhaps best used over eyes or mouths of an opponent, which are sensitive, because it doesn't do much damage. The thicker-skinned the vine, the slower-moving — but also the stronger. Soft-walled vines are swift and easy to whip, but easy to break. Medium ones smack but don't move fast enough to really whip — however, they don't tear as easily and are quick enough to entangle prey — and strong enough to hold for a moment or two. Thick-skinned ones ("iron-walled") move slowly and might be hard to maneuver around a moving target — but are next to impossible to break the hold of unless cut through with a metal blade. These are probably best used as pre-set traps than anything. Perhaps the best use of this Language, though, is simply to provide a rope when exploring!Force-growing a vine makes the new growth weaker than normal, in both speed (whipping speed) and in wall strength (more easily tearable). Be careful climbing one!
2) Language of the Bloom
Use a flower's pollen to your advantage — but be careful to warn your team mates so they can get a handkerchief over their noses and mouths! Some pollen causes drowsiness, others can slow an opponents nervous system (making them react/move slowly), while others can excite the senses and give your team mates some needed stimulation. One special flower can also produce light, a much-loved flower that is found throughout all of Central. Most Aefan, even if they do not know this language, at least know the command to awaken this flower to light: Etha'ii faam.Force-growing a flower advances its age accordingly and makes it die or wilt much faster.
3) Language of the Tree
The slowest but most blunt-force powerful of them, it's unfortunate this only works when you have a tree handy. Sadly (contrary to rumors), it cannot command a tree to pick up its roots and walk. However, if you just want one root to stick up and give pursuers a hard time walking over it, that's possible. Or, you know, a branch in the face can do wonders to cause a pursuer to hesitate. Making a tree flail is this language's simplest and most powerful attack. More subtle manipulation takes constant direction and is slow...so usually not useful in battle (but useful in building houses or making chairs!). If one gives it constant direction, you can get it to throw nuts or dead branches (be nice, don't make it throw it's live branches! ; A ; ) as projectile attacks, or get it to bend down one branch to serve as a staircase.Force-growing a tree is rather mean; because of trees' slow natures, they cannot draw nutrients from the ground fast enough to support speedy growth. Doing so will force the tree to kill parts of itself to support the new growth, which will probably be weaker than normal as well.
Since the range of an Aefan's voice is small, and using it by shouting is an inefficient and confusing endeavor (things you do not want to move, might), the EverTree offered its seeds to the Aefan. You can buy them in special stores throughout the Central Kingdoms, where masters of a special Language tune these seeds to a specific Aefan, and from thereafter those seeds will echo and resonate with that Aefan's voice (and yes, only one Aefan's voice can be tuned to each seed). Then these seeds are put into special compartments of throwing knives. In this manner, the knives can be thrown at a target and be used to call plants to it, or be thrown next to a specific plant in order to control it even if the Aefan is not standing near.
Keep in mind an Aefan's voice can resonate with all seeds at once, or by using a special pre-command (such as 'number one!'), they can talk through only one specific seed at a time. Be sure not to mess it up~
Houses :: Within the forest, people bend the trees to form houses, chairs, tables, stairways, walkways, or pretty much everything they need. They live high in the branches. In order to smooth out the floors of their houses, they will place thick panes of glass to form the floor, interwoven with plants to give the glass a greater support system. The glass is made from the sands of the desert to the west.
Clothes :: A lot of leather and skins in many forms — some hardened, some soft, often dyed with blues, greens, reds or yellows. Their feet are typically covered with straw sandals or leather shoes. Belts can be made of leather or strong woven hemp. They tend to wear leathers and some light furs when it is colder, and move more towards belts and open leather when it is hot. This is reflected by region:Jayca (desert) » Typically wears the least compared to other places, since it doesn't get cold enough to warrant constant covering. The skin of a desert-dweller is typically dark.
Central (central kingdom) » Their clothes are typically a little more formal, with more layers and decoration. They adorn their clothing with a lot of feathers.
L'mare (port) » Their clothes have influence from the other countries, since it is a port town, and is more casual. You will find the leathers and furs and feathers become accessories, and the overall style has more cloth of brighter colors, typically imported from It Imlour or Wenstir.
School :: From the age of five until they are 20, people can choose to enter/send their children to school. Schools are taught by scholars (scholars choose where to teach once they get permission to teach from the king; they are not assigned a place). If they want, people can continue up until the age of 30, though they must travel to Central to find more advanced scholars (all scholars who teach ages 20+ live in Central). By the age of 30, they should be ready for independent study (if they have the wish to continue study), leading the path down to scholar. After another ten years of study — when they are 40+ years of age — people can become low-level scholars. Only after continued study and trips overseas, though, would they be considered high-level scholars. High-level scholars must teach in Central or not teach at all.Some may become scholars at a younger age, but these people would be considered "special," having earned some kind of attention from the king.
ID :: All Aefan have a ring at the end of their tail. It acts as an identifier to distinguish one from others of one's own clan (because clanmembers have the same tattoos on their bodies). Usually they are made of wood; only higher-ranked officers or nobles have any made of a different material. Only the royal family may wear a ring made of gold. Others are not allowed to use this material or color. On the ring is engraved their clan, their current residence, their job title, and any other important information one wishes to add (such as relatives' names or the like). Of course, the military works the same way. Typically, as they grow older/more experienced, ID rings become more detailed.
Pets :: Aerial in nature. Messenger birds are the most common pets. They cannot be large enough to ride, but any size under that is acceptable.
(Pets can be used in battle - read the pets section for more information!)
Jobs and Demographics
**The country is primarily Aefan, but the three main clans are more multi-cultured. The monarch allows other races to live in those clans in order to learn from those other people and get their assistance in things they themselves are not good at. Thus, the three main clans are ~75% Aefan, 25% other. The smaller, private clans are more sheltered and purely Aefan.
The jobs of each person are free for themselves to choose, or might be assigned them by their clan leaders, depending on how the clan is run.
Popular Jobs :: Cobbler, hunter, harvester, tailor, jeweler, shipwright (L'Mare), trader, messenger, accountant, teacher, shopkeeper, armorer, weapon-maker, scout.
Special Jobs :: Glass workers, EverTree seed tuners, tenders of the plants (aka they grow produce for their clans), scholars, martial artists, avian breeders and trainers.
Nobility and Clans :: There are numerous clans throughout the Kingdom, and they are run more or less autonomously in whatever manner the locals decide. Many of them are run by a main family and supported by throngs of branch families. They are very insular and focus much on internal position to keep the peace within and between the families. The monarch doesn't usually interfere with the way anything is run within those families, and in return the clans accept the monarch's rule and pay taxes to support the education system (which is institutionalized) and abide by the laws the monarch decrees. There have been some rebellions and debate over how the country is run, but they use intellect far more than fighting amongst themselves to solve these issues. Clans are not considered defined by the land they live on, but rather by the people.
There is an exception to this way of thinking when faced with the three major clans, however. These three clans are strictly tied to the lands they are based at. To the east there is the seaside trading city of L'Mare - that specific land and the businesses run there are under direct control of the monarch (so in order to run a business there, you must be approved by the state). Likewise with the central lands, which is host to of a lot of the cultural innovation of the country, is where the country's main festivals take place, and most importantly is where the higher-level educational institutions are. And lastly, there is the western clan, which deals with glass and sand from the Jayca Desert. These three clans are, basically, businesses run by the royal family, and thus form the financial pillars that keep the military and royal family afloat.
Ruler :: Their ruler can be either a male or a female; they do not have any preference in the gender of their ruler. Their monarchs are famous for being skillful masters of all Languages, able to manipulate any type of plant with elegance. They are said to rule with the guidance of the EverTree, and reside within the Teeth of the World at its base, in their sacred temple-castle within. Only those who have been invited are allowed inside those walls; even the general audience chambers and government buildings are not inside.
The military of the Central Kingdom is run by the monarch, and is typically very loose and focused on defense. However, this does not indicate they do not have a strong force. The three major clans have their own armies stationed within each sector. They answer directly to the monarch's appointed generals. They do not have a cavalry, but they do have a flying unit that uses giant birds as mounts. Only the military are allowed to use them.
Weapons and Armor :: Armor is made most typically of leather and is light enough to not weigh them down or hardened, lacquered woods. Main weapons are bow and arrow or poles/staves. Those who wish to focus on using the plants in times of war typically learn the way of thrown blades, which is explained up in the 'Power Notes'.