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Basic Information:

Aurals are a medium-sized sentient, quadripedal, omnivorous species unrelated to any known species on earth today. They closely resemble canids, but are not canine in any way. They live in their own realm, called Najwa. 

Types of Aurals: There are two Aural builds, Standard and Sylvan. 
Aural Size Chart by ReapersMenagerie

If there is a difference between Aural types, they will be listed. General behavior is typically the same. 

Standard Aurals: These Aurals are smaller and more numerous than their larger cousins. They are stocky creatures, but their musculature and build vary from individual to individual.

Sylvan Aural: These Aurals may be larger, but they are less numerous and less stocky. Again, musculature and structure vary from individual to individual.

Standard Size: 107-137 cm at the shoulder. (3.5 to 4.5 ft) 
Sylvan Size: 152-198 cm at the shoulder (5 to 6.5 ft)

Standard Range: Standard Aurals are found all over Najwa. 
Sylvan Range: They are typically found in warmer forested or plains regions. 

Standard Anatomy: Aurals have a long head and wide hinging jaw. The ears sit back on the head and can be lifted and dropped, but they will not swing foward on top of the skull like a dogs would. The tail is flexible, but has interlocking vertibrae to stiffen the tail while using it for balance. The neck is flexible and s-shaped. They have powerful legs meant for running, but not typically long distances. The front paws are very nimble and flexible. They are used very much like hands and can grasp objects and tools, allowing them to craft and build. The spurs on the back feet are strong and meant for defense. They are tucked back out of the way while standing and walking, but are brought foward while sitting so they don't poke their bums. They also have flexible spines. The claws are non-retractable, like a dogs, but with wrists and ankles like a squirrel they can be excellent climbers. 

Sylvan Anatomy: The long head and wide hinging jaw is still very prominent in the build as well. The ears are set the same way, but thin out and end in a little nobby piece of cartileage. They are longer and more otter-like than the standard. The tail is still just as flexible, but doesn't have the interlocking vertebrae. They will use it in a whip-like fasion or to curl around objects. They are sprinters and can carry an even pace at long dinstances. Like standards, their paws are very flexible and used for grasping objects and making things. Sylvans do not have long spurs, they have shorter clawed toes.

Diet: Aurals are omnivores. They can survive on primarly meat or primarily plants, but it is not good for them to have a strict diet of just meat or just plants. Fruits, berries, roots, nuts, eggs, fish, reptiles, birds, and large mammals, you name it, Aurals eat it. They would rather fresh food and sometimes go out of their way to get it, but if there is carrion to scavenge then some aren't too picky. 

Social Behavior: Typically, Aurals are social creatures, making clans that can number into the 20's. The clans are typically family at the core and other individuals added in as they grow. However, clans can be made up of completely unrelated individuals. This does not mean that there aren't loners or very small clans. Clan attitudes range, this depends on the leading Aurals attitude in general. Some Clans are welcoming and friendly, some aren't. Sylvan's are generally more peaceful, elusive, and their clans are generally smaller in size. On the odd occaision you may find the species intermingling or living in the same clans (rarely breeding, but biologically speaking they can breed). They tend to stay within their own kind.

In-Clan Hierarchy: Aurals have a system much like wolves do as it helps keep the order, though, some clans divisions are not as strict as others. Typically, the clan is ruled by an Alpha or Alpha Pair. The Alpha can be male or female and the pair does not have to be a couple, they can be siblings, close friends, etc... Next is the Beta or Beta pair. The Beta's generally act as advisors to the alphas, and will often do things the Alpha does not want to do. Sometimes the Beta is chosen to be next in line to lead the clan. The next most respected rank in an Aural clan are the healers. After come the warriors, hunters, gatherers, scouts, and caretakers. Elders and Pups come next and then there are the Aurals considered Omega. They are generally not too skilled in any other rank, are weak, or are put last on purpose. More info on Ranking can be found here Clan Ranks and Other Positions

General Hierarchy: Aural clans generally have their own neighborhoods if they are in close proximity to other clans. These neighboring clans know which of them is the biggest and strongest and generally this clan will use it's weight to rule over the other, smaller clans. They don't have nations or an over all ruler like a king or queen, but there are the clans who have been around and undefeated for hundreds of years, making them respected. Clans typically are territorial. Their territory is for their members and means their food and resources. Some are more laid back than others, but most will chase a rival clan off their property while accepting smaller groups or indiviuals who are not threatening their resources. Some clans are just downright cantankerous because they can be.

Religious Beliefs: Aurals have their own panel of elemental dieities. The general population believes in the Gods, but not all have to, just like humans generally take religion. Some are more inclined to believe there is no superior power. However, in Najwa, there is magic and the Gods can become physical beings. Aurals are closer to the land and the elements. Sylvan's tend to be a little more mystic. More about the gods can be found here Aural Deities

Magic Abilities: Aurals can be born with elemental power. This power is called The Energy and is highly revered among them.  Some can acquire the Energy through great deeds and worship of the gods, so the gods will bestow upon them The Energy. The Energy is not too rare, but most Aurals are not born with it, that's why those with the Energy are highly revered. 

Other Behavioral Tidbits:

They are very expressive creatures, smiling and scowling. It may seem weird to have an animal express this way, but they do. The expressions don't always look exactly like human expressions, but close enough. 

They cry and feel emotions just as you and I do. They do have tear ducts, so tears do pool up in their eyes and run down their cheeks when they are overly emotional. 

They talk to each other like you and I do, but also include a range of barks, growls, chuffs, whimpers and howls. They use these together to create a wide range of sounds and commands. They do have a certain syntax in their culture, such as referring to small Aurals or small pups as scraps. They do use profane language as well. Nut-brain is a common insult, kind of like idiot. (I may make a little encyclopedia for things like this). 

Their rules and culture will highly depend on the clan, who rules it, etc.. some find it socially acceptable to murder and pillage, so do not. It just depends.

They DO NOT make structures like houses with wood and nails. The den is a loose term and does not mean that it is underground. Densite or Clan Center are used when encompassing the whole common gathering area. This is the main area where the clan members rest, chat, and socialize.
    - There are then offshoots from the clan center. The Birthing Den or Birthing Area is typically underground or a well protected area of woven plants and mud if these things are available. The pups are born there. After several days go by, they leave the birthing den and spend their time either in the Clan Center being watched over or in a special Caretakers Den or Area. 
    - The Clan Center is typically guarded. Scouts will patrol and so will warriors. Hunters and Gatherers typically spend the day out and about finding food. Alpha's and Beta's typically have their own secluded area of the Clan Center. There are sleeping areas, also called nest areas in which Aurals go to sleep comfortable if they are not on the job. 
    - Clans that are old have worn paths throughout the territory. Aurals will make beds, nests, and build raised walls around their clan centers, but they do not see the need to build house-like structures. Some dig into the ground, some find areas with caves or rocky outcroppings it's up to you.
    - some Clans have several Clan Centers around their territory that they may travel to with the seasons or gather in for different festivals. 

They do make apparel and armor, but don't make things like knives and swords. Teeth and claws are good enough. Although, they will make caps for claws and spurs, as well as teeth to give the upper hand or an edge over the enemy. 

This subject might be a little sensitive and maybe a little weird for some, but they are intelligent emotional creatures, so it would only make sense that this would happen. 
   - As much as I don't want to make it okay, rape does happen in Aural culture. (we're telling stories here, just remember that, sweeping it under the rug and acting like it doesn't happen is just as bad)
   - Females are only receptive during certain parts of the breeding season. Different females are receptive at different times and they can smell the difference. They can also smell when a young Aural has matured. For females this doesn't actually mean receptive, but that they have fully developed and can have pups. It is not culturally acceptable to have pups before they have followed the Path of the Ancients and passed their breeding rights. (Roleplay wise, you can have a female Aural get pregnant, whether she wants to or not, but if it's before her PotA and breeding rights are done, the pups will die as she's too young and not ready to bear pups yet).
-  Aurals do have sex, they don't call it sex, but use a different set of terms such as 'laying with'. Ex: 'Oh gurl, did you hear that Becky laid with Tim? They aren't even mates!' - They will also use innuendo to refer to it too, like walking off together or finding a nice dark cave to be alone in. 
   - Females don't get pregnant unless they are in season, so they do enjoy sex just as we do. But accidents do happen.
   - There is also homosexuality and bi-curiousness, etc... whatever floats your boat. However, since instinct and natural drive is that they find someone of the opposite gender and have pups to continue the species, homosexuality and other types of sexuality is typically frowned upon or taboo in Aural culture. Others are accepting, some are not, some don't care, it's up to you how you play your game. The Gods are not the reason for it being frowned upon like certain religions frown upon it in our culture. Aurals, like any animal, have the natural drive to keep wanting to populate their world with more Aurals. However, some Aurals are just born different, as they are intelligent enough to realize that they are different. 
   - It is culturally acceptable that Aurals find a mate, have pups, and stay with that mate for the rest of their lives. However, like human culture, things happen and the rules are broken. Like I said above, it's up to you to play your game your way. 
- They don't 'get married' either. They just say they are mates or a mated pair and call it good. 

:bulletgreen: It's also good to read through all group information, no matter how pertinent it is to you at the moment because I've managed to leave little breadcrumbs of information everywhere. 

If you have a question about Aural behavior or whether or not an idea you have will be acceptable, feel free to ask! 
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Submitted on
November 2, 2017