Dru'un

Vicious, solitary hunters and apex predators of the mountain realms, the Dru'un are a collection of animal-like species, commonly believed to be Fay by the Kykr. But the Dru'un are not a Fay species and possess no magical ability at all. Nor do they have any innate connection to nature that otherwise makes Fay special and distinct from Kykr races. Dru'un are more related to the Illim and Kuna than any Fay species.   You could call them "boar-men" or "goat-men" depending on which particular tribe of Dru'un they come from, but most of the time people will simply refer to them as "Dru'un". While Kykr see the Dru'un as one species, the Dru'un do not. They do not interbreed between different tribes of Dru'un, and mating is strictly forbidden, punishable by death, for anyone doing so. Both the male and female are immediately put to death if it is found to have happened.  
Zalra Dru'un
Zalra Dru'un
There are likely hundreds of tribes of Dru'un, but the most prominent ones are the Dulzuun, Zalra, Nilvan and Satra. They are intelligent enough to band up and form tribes, create and use tools as well as primitive weapon, but have little advanced technology of their own. They raid and pillage to find more advanced weapons and armor, and usually the strongest of their warriors will wield weapons stolen in raids on the Kykr.   They are not skilled enough metalworkers to create any complex weapons of their own and they are therefore often armed with bone or stone weapons in the form of clubs, spear and stone axes. Their armor, if any, is made of rawhide and thick cloth draped across their shoulders. Some also wear bones as armor.
Genetic Ancestor(s)
Scientific Name
Dru'un, beastmen
Origin/Ancestry
Dru'un
Lifespan
20-25 years but could live to beyond 50 if not prematurely killed by their violent nature and hostile habitats.
Average Height
1.7 - 2.2m (5'7''-7'2'')
Average Weight
70 - 200kg (165-470 pounds)
Naming traditions
Buug
Ding
Drogo
Dülzen
Khar
Krog
Lünden
Nartad
Ser
Serkhuug
Süld
Yaridag
Yuuv

Dru'un mentality

It has often been speculated why the Dru'un are so violent and the best explanation that has been lifted so far is that they straddle the line between animal and sapient creature. They are smart enough to be considered sapient, but animal enough to be largely driven by instinct.   The truth of the matter is that the Dru'un evolved as solitary hunters and hold the spot of apex predator in all their habitats. When you are the apex predator, the only threat to you comes from your mother, your brother or your children. Dru'un are distrustful and fearful of others, especially other Dru'un. They only really trust their closest family and to an extent, their tribe. Most Dru'un live alone, hunt alone and only contribute to the tribe through tributaries.   Different Dru'un tribes fear each other as much as they fear the Fay and Kykr. They frequently war with each other over resources, land and territories. If the Dru'un weren't so busy slaughtering each other, they could likely overwhelm the Kykr kingdoms.   A Dru'un who encounters another species or even another kind of Dru'un easily gets overwhelmed by it's inner hunter and survival instinct. It's a deafening choir of instincts screaming to them "KILL IT! DESTROY IT! KILL IT BEFORE IT KILLS YOU!"  

Geographic Distribution

The Dru'un are quite prolific by necessity. Their constant warfare among the tribes and their need to raid means that they need a constant supply of able-bodied warriors. The average lifespan of a Dru'un is short.   This means that they are pretty much everywhere on Arjin, although they prefer mountaineous or hilly terrain. They are constant plague on farmsteads and villages near any mountains or hilly regions. The Dru'un are a particularly bad scourge on the northern Morvátian Peninsula, where they come down from the mountains to raid the villages in the lowlands.   While Dru'un can be found almost everywhere in northern Arjin, they prefer rocky terrain where they can build their homes in caves and crevices. Most of the tribes seem to have evolved in rocky areas of the world and spread from there, with the exception of the south Gimroan Dru'un, the Satra bear-men who roam the basin. The Satra and the Nilvan make their homes in forests and fields, rather than mountains.   Further away from the mountains the Dru'un make primitive huts and tents in their more permanent settlements. However, these settlements are usually not very long-lived as there is a standing reward from the Kykr lords to wipe these settlements off the map.  

Perception & Sensory capabilities

Dru'un have poor eyesight, but most of them possess very sensitive smell and some, particularly the Zalra and Nilvan, have very good hearing. They often use smell and hearing when hunting rather than eyesight, as most of them are near sighted and lack both detail and a broad color spectrum. Their vision is quite good at picking up even minute movement however, so standing still can allow one to "blend in" to the background for the Dru'un.   Though in difference from the Kykr and most Fay species, the Dru'un have very good dark vision. They see almost as badly in darkness as in the light.  

Average physique

Due to their violent and brutal ways, most Dru'un are muscularly built and are at least competent warriors. The more successful tribe lords can become fat and corpulent with age, ruling through fear more so than strength.   The Zalra and Nilvan are the exception to this, with the Nilvan in particular being far more agile and quick than strong. The Nilvan fight not through brute strength but through speed and surprise.  

Average intelligence

Dru'un are not very smart but they are intelligent enough to create and use tools and primitive weapons and have at least a basic understanding of numbers and tactics, making them dangerous in larger numbers. But don't expect to reason with them.

Culture and cultural heritage

The Dru'un are, in spite of their tribal and scattered culture, very uniform. They are all worshippers of a mountain god called Khövzin Khüünmurch, but knowledge about the god and the worship thereof is completely unknown to the Kykr.   They are however highly shamanistic and bones, feathers and hides play a large part in their culture and are often seen as adornments. There also seem to be a fair bit of ancestral worship, or at least reverence for them, among Dru'un tribes.  

Interspecies relations

The Dru'un hate everyone and everything, even other Dru'un tribes which means that they are constantly at war with one another, and that is probably the main reason they haven't overrun the Kykr. With their prolific breeding and aggressive mindset they would make a truly horrific plague upon the world if they weren't so busy trying to kill each other.

Articles under Dru'un



Cover image: Pigman War chief by Mark Bulahao

Comments

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30 Nov, 2018 22:24

I like that they know how to use simple tools and are intelligent enough to worship a sort of god, but that they aren't clever enough to band together and overthrow the other species. I wonder if the different sorts of Dru'un would be able to procreate (if they weren't busy hating each other) It would be great to get some links to the geographical distribution so that one could read further into other articles that way. Great job!

30 Nov, 2018 22:30

Brilliant insight, thanks! Gonna get on that right away. Thanks a lot!

Author of prize-winning RPG settings Dark Shadows and Cinders of the Cataclysm. Designer of the narratively focused Celenia D10 RPG System.
30 Nov, 2018 22:38

You're welcome :D

yeslittlehummingbird-deleted
Anna Elizabeth Boyett
1 Dec, 2018 02:03

"Murder everything".... I love them. Immensely and instantly. It would be amazing to see more snippets of the differences between them (culturally or otherwise) outside of just their physiology :D

Loremaster Oddman
Nugget of Odium
1 Dec, 2018 03:04

An enjoyable article to read, sparking the imagination and giving me some goosebumps. Truly a horrifying species, and you did a great job describing them. I especially liked your description of their sensory abilities, in particular the addition of nearsightedness was very fitting. What I'm curious about is why there are different sub-species and in particular how they evolved differently. Great job!

1 Dec, 2018 03:26

A well-written article! I liked your use of imagery too.

1 Dec, 2018 07:08

I really like the boar-man imagery. Goatmen are common; pig-dudes, much less common!   I like that there's a consequence to their state of technology; i.e they don't have much metal stuff, so they aren't going to be rolling around in full plate. Is scavenge and stealing such metal highly prized among them? Is it a status symbol?   The questions I have: What are their society like? *Why* do they hate everyone else? How does political power and faith interact in their societies? If you bag a Boar-Man, could you make bacon?   Liked the least.. They have a bit of "the adversary race" thing going for them; hates everyone, primitive, fighting all the time. I can see the niche for a species like that in a setting, so it's not a huge deal, but I'd love to see some more detail that make them something more, give them some depth and complexity.   It's real good writing and the images are great <3

BKBass
B.K. Bass
8 Dec, 2018 22:11

Very cool!

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