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Hakah

The Hakah are spindly humanoids, clad in brilliant feathers and scales. They rarely grow taller than 170 cm, and are nearly always very slender, though their feathers conceal this somewhat, bringing their bulk near that of a Makkal. Their feathers range in colour from deep, vibrant red to glossy turquoise to yellow and orange, studded with false-eyes, and similarly range in shape and form from cockatoo-like fringes to businesslike and sleek and long trailing ribbons. While the feathers are a Hakah's most striking feature, there are many other things that set them apart from the rest of the peoples of the archipelago, such as their clawed feet, but the most important is probably their strangely flat and featureless faces and large eyes. This has led to body language being much more important in Hakah culture, and they are often seen by others as an expressive and graceful people.   There is very little that differentiates a male and a female Hakah, externally, though pregnant females grow noticeably larger just before their egg is laid. Traditionally, Hakah mate temporarily, and pair up only until their chick reaches the age of four or five years old, after which raising the young becomes a communal effort. Because of this, Hakah generally have a transient view of relationships, viewing them as things that come and go, as interests and needs align. This means that Hakah are seen as fickle by many, when it comes to matters of the heart, especially by Lesshen, who prefer more permanent relationships. Young Hakah have a darker colouration than adults, usually deep brown or green, and often speckled with white or gray, and their feathers are fluffy and ill-suited to flight. As they near adulthood, their chick feathers molt off, and are replaced by their adult coat, which is at its most colourful in youth. As the Hakah age further, their feathers lose their shine, and become more and more drab, and truly old Hakah, nearing a century in age, often have pure white, grey or cream coats.   The Hakah are the most socially reclusive of the peoples of the Archipelago, as they live almost exclusively near the Ancient Structures that allow them to fly, where they roost high above most threats. Luckily, however, the Pirai is littered with such structures, and as such, soaring Hakah are a common sight in the skies above cities like Sorahj Shikar. Amongst their own kind, Hakah organise themselves by Brood and Clade, Brood being linked to their home settlement, and Clade referencing their blood ties to ancient families. Clade is carried by the maternal line, and it is also female Hakah who keep and prepare the nests needed for laying eggs, and as such, much of the power in Hakah society is held by females.   While in their roosts, Hakah rarely wear much clothing, as it would restrict their movement in flight, though jewellery is common, and tools are sometimes carried on belts or harnesses. Among Hakah who dwell on the ground, however, clothing is much more common, and flowing robes in bright colours are very popular. Though few ground-dwellers have ever visited the high roosts of the Hakah, there are rumours that there are great hidden murals in the hollows of the ancient buildings that detail the history of the world to an extent that is only rivalled by the oral traditions of the Ghol. As the keepers of such knowledge, Hakah are often scholars who seek even more information about the world and the fall of the Ancients. In spite of this deep connection with their own and the world's history, Hakah do not have much interest in religion, other than as a vector for gathering information.   Due to their frail bodies, Hakah rarely go in for warfare, and when such is necessary, they are more likely to focus on ambush tactics than outright battles. They do make excellent scouts and guides, however, and those who leave their Broods are often strong of will and quick witted.

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