Aswani - by Kristian Juul Rasmussen
The aswani are a primitive, bestial race of semi-humanoids. They are mammalian bipeds with snouts and long ears. Males have short, curved horns. They are covered in soft fur and have tails. . They walk upright like a man and there is something vaguely human in the face. They have excellent senses and can run very fast. Their large ears can detect the faintest sounds.
The aswani are a race of hunter/gatherers. They live in a tropical paradise in eastern Qeshir which grants them a great bounty of game and edible fruits. The aswani are most comfortable in the wilds of their homeland. They are intimately familiar with nature, have a great empathy with wild animals and seem to have an innate understanding of how weather and nature function. . They do not use animals as labor. They can predict storms, smelling it in the wind. They are sometimes employed as scouts or guides by foreigners visiting Qeshir.
The aswani are a matriarchal society. Although the males are the stronger and more aggressive of the gender, the females lead. The males hunt for prey while the females gather edible roots and tubers and tend the children. One female can have multiple mates. There is no such concept as marriage or divorce. Partners are exchanged freely. The more wealthy and powerful a female is, the more mates she attracts.
The aswani have no formal government or social system. They dwell in extended family units that form loose nomadic tribes. Each tribe is a self-contained political and social collective led by the oldest female. The region as a whole is provincially ruled, although territories are not firm. Tribes are nomadic and their respective territories move with them. The tribes interact a great deal, either by trading or fighting. They also fight the Padashan Empire and the wizard of the Sea of Ash. The aswani have no formal laws among them. Custom holds that each family tends to its own. They have no word for "debt". All trades are considered even and final.
The aswani are not a wealthy people. They have no magic or technology, no metalcraft or stonework. They build no cities and construct no lasting architecture. They dwell in crude tents fashioned from wood and animal skins. They wear little clothing and only light armor. They use only the most basic and primitive weapons and tools. In all aspects, they live in harmony with nature. The aswani tend to be very superstitious and are terrified of magic. They have an uncanny sense for mystical energy and seem to be able to sense the slightest spell or magic item. Aswani dislike intruders into their realm. Especially those who have powerful magic about them. They detest those that would mine the land or strip the forests.
They have a complex language which sounds primitive at first. But it is complex, layered and has many subtle distinctions of sound that carry meaning
It is tradition to have a pathrak - a social gathering centered around a large bonfire – after a successful hunt or to celebrate any important event. At a pathrak, there is music, singing, dancing, feasting and trading.
Aswani warriors and hunters tattoo open eyes on their eyelids to warn them of danger while they sleep.
It is believed by some scholars that the mandalar and the aswani are related. According to the theory, the aswani were a mandalar tribe that fled the Border Clans, migrated to the far east of Qeshir and settled in the jungles there. The mutagenic effects of drellis have pushed them down a different evolutionary road and they have evolved into a different, but related, race. There are obvious similarities between the two races and this theory is very plausible.
This website was last updated August 30, 2018. Copyright 1990-2018 David M. Roomes.