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HUMANS

    Humans are the most numerous species of Syemar on most of the known world. On average they live about 80 years, and have a generation length of about 20 years. Appearance-wise, they can vary greatly in skin, hair, and eye color, though all have a skin tone that is some shade of beige. Generally humans with ancestry closer to the equator have darker skin tones.     Human societies do not seem to have any universal structure, as they can vary between matriarchal, patriarchal, authoritarian, or egalitarian. Humans are also highly adaptable and can live in most climates. However, they do tend to live above ground, and prefer to build their own custom dwellings near sources of water.     The aura of every human has an innate connection to one of the elemental planes. Although this connection is weak in most humans, about 1 in 100 humans can be trained to project their auras and thus manipulate the world around them. Though this means that effective supernatural ability in humans is rare, when it does manifest, it is considered one of the most powerful and versatile supernatural abilities among all Syemar.

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ISPOLIYAD

    The Ispoliyad are the hybrid descendants of Ispolin (also known as the High Ones)- a tall, long-lived, and advanced species who visited humanity thousands of years ago to impart knowledge. Although the Ispolin themselves have long vanished, they left behind many descendants mixed with common humans. These descendants are called Ispoliyad. All Ispoliyad are hybrids with humans, as the Ispolin never produced viable offspring with any other species.     As the physical traits of Ispolin are dominant even after many generations, and as Ispoliyad themselves have a tendency to mate with other Ispoliyad in order to preserve their bloodlines, Ispoliyad are generally identifiable on sight. Ispoliyad tend to be 3-4 inches taller than the common humans of the same region and gender, have tanned red-tinted skin, and, most notably, have iridescent hair that ranges in hue from sapphire to emerald. Though there is some debate over whether Ispoliyad can be classified as their own species (and indeed many consider Ispolin as simply an extremely advanced race of humans), Ispoliyad are visually and biologically distinct enough for most scholars to list them in a unique category.     Ispoliyad maintain some of the variability of their human side, but inherited much of the superior magical capabilities of their Ispolin ancestors. As such, they are overrepresented in shamanic and scholastic orders, and take pride in their inborn talents, sometimes even to the point of arrogance. The only Tertiary Domain casters in recorded history have all been Ispoliyad.     However, not all Ispoliyad are happy living a life of institutionalized scholarship. Some actively reject the rigid expectations that they were subjected to from birth, and instead choose to live as wanderers, using their magical instincts to guide them on their travels.

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DAEV

Daev are a species of purple-skinned humanoids native to Arvos. They stand between 4.5 and 6 feet tall, sport a thin hairless tail, and are generally slightly shorter than humans. Their origins are unknown, though many theorize that they were originally an underground-dwelling species due to their ability to see in complete darkness. Due to their apparent lack of all supernatural abilities, it is common belief that daev are inferior to other Syemar, and thus should serve as slaves. Daev are sexually dimorphic. Males have oversized, claw-like hands, and thick dark fur that covers their shoulders, backs, and the sides of their heads. Females are slender and have small hands and feet, and have no hair except for head hair. Female daev are seen as graceful, beautiful beings usually kept as domestic servants or pleasure slaves. It is not uncommon for rich men to parade their array of daev slavewomen in scant attire when they attend social functions or hold celebrations. Male daev, however, are relegated to the undesirable roles in society- waste cleaning, street sweeping, and grave digging- and are owned by masters who run such services, only occasionally being rented out for breeding. One notable specialty that male daev dominate is mining, as their eyesight and their status as unpaid labor lends well to the demands of mine owners. Daev are naturally born with two horn-like growths on their foreheads. These horns are believed to cause behavioral problems, and thus the horns of slave daev are painfully cut away shortly after birth. Even though daev have lived as slaves for time immemorial, they still maintain a level of subculture, as mothers pass traditions on to their children in the absence of fathers. Daev of each region often have their own slang and folk tales. Stories of the daev arising from caverns or living in underground forests long ago are especially common.

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ETUN

Etun are a hardy, simple, and large-bodied species that is native to the northern mountain ranges of the world. Most etun live in the Viskelds Mountains of Arvos, though a sizeable amount also live in the Yulai Mountains of Taiya. They are thus taxonomically divided into Arvosan Etun and Taiyan Etun, with minor differences in morphology and culture between the two. Appearance-wise, etun are muscular and covered with coarse, insulating fur, and have multiple horns which adorn their distinctly triangular skulls. Their arms are longer than their legs, and they walk much like gorillas. Adults stand between 7 and 9 feet tall, with females slightly smaller than males. Etun live simple lives as clan-based hunter-gatherers, and most are peaceful in temperament. Due to their size and strength, though, mountain travelers are still well advised to not anger them, and especially not to threaten their young. Etun have the ability to physically slip into any stone or earth material, allowing them to hide underground instantaneously and access cave systems unreachable by any other species. This ability is called stoneslipping. Stoneslipping naturally manifests as etun children learn to walk, but skilled use of this ability must be trained over many years. After all, etun do still need to breathe, and if they are not careful in their navigation, they can suffocate within the stone or earth that they have entered.

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ALUKAH

Alukah are slender and tall humanoids who are native to northern Diskara. They live for almost 200 years, but are only fertile for about 5 years of their lifetime; thus their population numbers remain extremely low. Alukah drink blood for nourishment, and they can turn their own blood into any solid object they can visualize, such as a weapon to fight with or an improvised tool. It is said that in ancient times alukah warred with their human neighbors, as humans were encroaching on Alukah ancestral territory, and Alukah killed and ate humans in response. But, eventually, the two peoples came to a truce, and nowadays Alukah consider it taboo to eat any other Syemar species. Alukah have dark red skin that is cracked with lighter red streaks, slanted eyes that are red on yellow, sharp teeth, slits for nostrils, almost no outer ear, and silver hair. Male and female alukah are virtually indistinguishable, except for when a female is fertile, during which her skin turns bright red, and she becomes treasured and protected by alukah society. Despite their off-putting appearance, alukah are a highly cultured and intelligent people, and have integrated into the societies of the much more populous humans. They lean towards professions that require close contact with blood, such as undertakers, butchers, cooks, healers, and midwives.

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BURMEN

Burmen are theorized to be a baser and less intelligent form of humans who live in the untamed wilderness all over the world. They reach sexual maturity at around the same time as humans but live to only around 40 years old. The females form clans and raise their young together, while males are kicked out as adolescents to fend for themselves. As a result, many young burmen males form raiding parties to attack travelers. Unlike other primitive syemar, such as etun, burmen do not have any complex art or culture. As such, some scholars refuse to classify them as syemar; though their capability for speech lead a majority to disagree. Physically, burmen are usually a little shorter and stockier than common humans, with barrel-like chests, dense bones, sloped foreheads, and thickly ridged brow ridges that extend to a rippled noseridge. Their skin color tends to be varying tones of light grey. Burmen are not known to have any supernatural abilities. However, they are not commonly enslaved like daev, as their aggressive nature make them ill-suited for servitude. The only humans known for enslaving burmen are the Poroska of northern Arvos.