Lesser Tribes of Prax

From: Sandy Petersen (sandyp@idcube.idsoftware.com)
Date: Thu 21 Nov 1991 - 09:56:33 EET

BASMOLI BERSERKERS The plains lion of Prax is now basically extinct. The Basmoli Berserkers, a Hsunchen people, are in the peculiar position of being Hsunchen without their animal cohorts. They are fierce hunters, and mainly hunt the herd animals of the Great Tribes. Always spoiling for a fight, they are disliked by everyone else. Occasionally the tribe is able to produce a lion (don't ask), but it is always sterile, unable to mate and produce more lions. Still, it is a valued tribesmember while it lives, and it is certainly bad news in a fight.

BOLO-LIZARD FOLK These people are traces of the lost Golden Age Folk, the people of Tada. They are proud of their descent. Of course, by now, they've heavily interbred with the other nomad types. Therefore, traces of the Golden Age physiognomy are highly valued among these folk, and are cause for high social rank and desirable marriages.

They worship Eiritha and Foundchild, mostly. Waha is viewed as an alien god, but Eiritha's usefulness is clear. They don't eat their lizards, except in emergencies, and live almost exclusively off hunted prey. They're good hunters, and talented with their bolas. The stupid lizards lay eggs, of course, and then abandon them. The Bolo-Lizard Folk carefully mark down where the eggs have been laid, and then camouflage them as best they can, so that when the eggs hatch, they can be there to catch the young lizards and try to raise them. It takes two or three seasons for the hatchlings to attain a size at which they are able to keep up with the troop, so the owner of a given egg batch generally takes his beasts up into the foothills of the Rockwoods to raise the damn things.

Perhaps because of their lifelong battle against their lizard's instincts (formed when the Wastes were a fertile paradise, and contrary to common sense nowadays), the Bolo-Lizard folk are famous for their cynical sense of humor. They are pygmies, like the Impala Folk.

CANNIBAL CULT The Cannibal Cult is composed of members of many tribes. They worship and placate the many hungry ghosts infesting Prax (other devastated lands with such ghosts also often have a Cannibal Cult organization). These ghosts are well-known to every shaman -- they are hungry, and never fed. They are cold, and never warmed. They are lonely, and never loved. If the Cannibal Cult did not propitiate them from time to time, they would get so hungry that they rose up and killed everyone! What matter if the Cult derives actual magic benefits from their service?

In addition, there is a very Praxian touch to their madness -- they believe that everyone else got Waha's decision backwards -- they believe that we are supposed to eat People, not beasts. (Hence, they'll eat Morocanth, but dislike herd-men.) Of course, the difficulty of getting enough people to eat means they've got to settle for animals and normal beasts on many occasions.

The Cannibal Cult is not without honor -- for one thing, they can only derive magic power from the body of an enemy. They don't eat their friends. In addition, the more powerful the enemy eaten, the more strength they get. For this reason, the Cult naturally cultivates powerful enemies. Of course, this means that the Cult can never be very big -- the powerful enemies see to this. Sort of a self-limiting philosophy.

OSTRICH RIDERS Probably the puniest tribe in Prax. They're pygmies, and ride big birds. They eat their birds' eggs, which are laid in fairly large clutches. Once a year, the birds sit on their eggs and so for that season (Sea), the tribe is basically immobilized and vulnerable to large-scale raids. Like many small tribes, they also primarily worship Foundchild.

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