The Arboreans of Aetolia
Arboreans are an ancient race of tree-like humanoids, originally created by Yanai during an age far beyond time and memory.
Unknown to Aetolia until the Year 501 of the Midnight Age, it was the return of Yanai, known variably as the Earthmother, the Font of Life, and the Evergiving, and the recomposition of Her Eternal Song that brought this long forgotten race back into existence in the modern era.
Unique insofar as their lack of shared heritage or history with the other Sapience races, Arboreans have come into a world that has forgotten them.
The struggles of such an existence are many, and how this old-come-new-again people will adapt to the travails and pitfalls of the Midnight Age remains to be seen.
Arborean Racial Skills
- Peeling (Level 25)
- Enroot (Level 50)
- Sunlight Regen (Level 75)
Base Statistics & Advantages
- Strength: 12
- Dexterity: 11
- Intelligence: 15
- Constitution: 12
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Eyes: browns, blacks, amber, green, hazel. No blue. Small and shiny.
Ears: boreholes or small divots.
Size: 2 - 9 feet / 0.6 - 2.7 metres
Limbs: long and gnarled, bearing a stretched appearance.
Their torso is the shortest part of them.
Gait is heavy and lumbering, plodding along due to a lack of joints.
Arboreans are genderless and hairless, with a thick slab of bark covering their whole body in a wide range of colours from the ruddy shade of redwood, to the dark umber of mahogany and blackwood, to the pale hues and green tones of young oak or from excessive chlorophyll. They are bipedal, their arms and limbs made of fused roots, with many distinguishable features.
Living Arborean can be flower-bearing, fruit-laden, or utilitarian in appearance. The older an Arborean is, the more prevalent some things like lichen, mosses, and fungi are upon their bark. Small ecosystems (to the extent that could be found on typical healthy trees) would be welcomed and thriving between their inner and outer bark.
Undead Arborean are bereft of the life and foliage that grows in the wood of their live counterparts. Instead, their bodies tend to be more bare, resembling dead or ossified wood with an almost petrified appearance.
Arborean Cultural Notes
Owing to their nature as creations of the God of Life and - in many respects - being natural wonders in and of themselves, the Arborean people possess an innate zeal and reverence for life in all its forms.
Children and the young are viewed as sacred - gifts from the Life Mother to be cherished and nurtured above all else. The nurseries of the Arborean are without exception heavily guarded and secure, protection of the youth - the future - being of paramount importance.
Respect for the land and for the environment is another native quality - life itself is a gift, and taking from the earth is something that should be done with great care and reciprocity. One should never take more than they need, and always pay back the gift with gifts of your own in turn.
Despite their innate constitution and resilience, Arboreans are slow to anger and slower still to make war, but equally fierce and defensive of anything that would threaten their way of life or the safety of their saplings.
Equal respect is afforded to death - viewed by the Arboreans not as a looming spectre but as a vital part of living, inevitable as winter follows fall. Death is not to be avoided, feared, or forestalled, but accepted, and aging Arboreans often return to their home to die, that their deadwood may be used by those who yet live in acts of creation and tribute to the fallen.
And yet, in spite of this inherent zest for life, some Arboreans have struggled to adapt to modern contrivances. Overcome by a feeling of being lost out of time, deprived of memories, and without Elder Life to guide them on their way, some have struck out from their benevolent and pacifistic origins - origins that the modern people cannot wholly relate to with much of their forebears dead eons before their rebirth - and taken drastic measures to anchor themselves and find a place in the world.
While rare, undead and even vampiric Arboreans are not unheard of, having turned away from respect for the seasons and the inevitability of death. Instead they dedicate themselves to finding a way of life that is not dictated by fractured history and a heritage they can never truly know or understand.
It is claimed that the original home of the Arboreans was in a forest known as the Greenwood. The Elder of the Copse - gifted some minor recollections when brought back into being - has described it as a lush and far-reaching woodland, a sprawling mass of trees and vivacious foliage in which the Goddess Yanai often worked Her wonders of Life. Unfortunately, no region by this name exists today and further details are lost to memory.
In the modern day, the Arborean people have taken up residence in the Cantor's Copse. This region of the Kalydian once lay in ruin and desolation until it was healed of its sickness and transformed. The settlement is wholly fashioned from natural resources, absent the iron and stone of civilisation. The natural spring at the Copse's centre acts as the heartbeat of the Arboreans' home.
Tips for Roleplaying an Arborean
Arboreans get a very unique roleplay tool other races may not get to the same degree: sound. Rustling and crunching leaves, groaning, splintering, and snapping wood, heavy footfalls, etc. There’s a ton of ambiance you can add to your character and actions using sound alone!
There are many ways to roleplay Arboreans, but most commonly, it does appear that half roleplay Arboreans as venerating nature, and being one in harmony with the wilds, to hear the song of the forests.