Thursday, 9 June 2011

Centaurs of Karameikos

Centaurs of Karameikos
by Havard
from the Mystara Message Board posted 24 November 2004.

The lands north of the Dymrak Forest are home to a large number of Centaur Clans. These are of a barbaric and warlike race, placing great value on physical strength, courage and honour. They are a proud race and often show a hostile attitude towards non centaurs. The Centaurs often wear their hair Mohawk-style or spiked. They cover their upper (human) body with runic tattoos and in times of war use blue war paint. The Centaurs worship spirits of nature and ancestors as well as the Immortals of Nature (Terra, Ordana, Djaea and Faunus). They speak a form of archaic Traladaran.

The clans are divided into two major tribes; the Firemane Tribe and the Stormwind Tribe. The Firemane Tribe is a chaotic and wild bunch. They tend to have red hair and gold-brown eyes. This tribe is known to be the most aggressive and warlike. They are rumoured to occasionally sell human captives to the Iron Ring, and have had an alliance with Grizzelda, one of the Hags of Dymrak (See the Witches of Dymrak) in the past. The Firemanes live in the lands between the Kelvin Moors and the Lake of Lost Dreams. Fire is holy to the Firemane Tribe. Their leader is Rathanuk Flamehoof, a powerful warrior easily recognised by his flaming red lion-like hair and a scar below his left eye. He wields a powerful scimitar, said to burst into flames when engaged in combat.

The other clan, the Stormwinds, is considered to be more reliable. Still, the Stormwinds dislike outsiders and prefer to stay away from civilisation. However, someone meeting with the Stormwinds will notice that they have many humans living among them. These humans are usually Traladarans who are escaped Iron Ring slaves, poor, or people who for some other reason have abandoned civilisation and "gone native" accepting the Centaur way of life. These humans find acceptance by the Centaurs, in spite of the usual resentment most of that race have for humans. The Stormwinds live on the Kelvin Moors. They have black hair and deep blue eyes. Stormy weather is considered a blessing by the Stormwinds. Their leader is Arthane Stormchild, an aging, yet powerful Centaur warrior, with greying black hair worn in a ponytail, who is never seen without his great spear and a rune-carved hunting horn hanging from a leather string around his neck.

There is a third group of Centaurs also living in these lands. These are the Clanless, a group consisting entirely of Centaurs and Chevalls who are either Druids or Bards. These Centaurs act as judges, sages, storytellers and healers and enjoy great respect from all Centaurs. The most powerful of all the Clanless is the Chevall Druid Loshad (see B10). He was trained by the mighty Master Temor himself in the Valley of Treants. Loshad works to protect horses, and preserve the peace between the Centaurs. He hates the werewolves of the realm with a passion and has sometimes allied himself with the Lupins of Kelvin in order to destroy this evil.


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