Kay'on Ethnicity in Allatar | World Anvil
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The human nomadic tribes of the The Kayhaan Desert    Descendants of the tribes of Kesson who migrated through the Kayhaan in the distant past these tribes left the cities and became nomads about a century before the cities were left to go to ruin.   Dark skinned, they travel the deserts well, their generations of expertise in the inhospitable terrain means they know more about surviving in this environment than anyone.    They are also well connected to the ruins of the cities and the ancient Kessonic pictographs within the ruins. Their annual paths through the dessert take them to the locations of these ruins and at several they will stop for a holy ceremony or observance.   They have had many running battles of late with The Red Legion, who are trying to drive them away from the ruined temple sites that they visit as part of their migration.


Major language groups and dialects

The Kay'on speak ava'yon, which bears some connection to Kessonic    The rituals, performed by the Kay'asha, are in the holy language, which is actually the pure Kessonic, however, it is spoken by rote, with no actual understanding as to its meaning.

Shared customary codes and values

Looking after water is the most important value to the Kay'on. Every member of the tribe is responsible for conserving water where possible as during their migration in may be some time between sources of potable water.

Common Etiquette rules

Offering water to a guest is the most common and polite form of greeting.    Spitting water at the feet of another is the greatest form of respect that can be paid to someone, and forms part of most deals or contracts, including marriage.

Common Dress code

Light flowing robes and turbans are the most common form of dress, the better to keep cool in the desert. The Kay'asha wear robes of black and have their faces covered by veils when outside.

Common Customs, traditions and rituals

There are six traditional rituals conducted through the yearly migration at different ruined temples, the remainder of the cities of the ancestors.    The rituals at these sites would at one time ensure that the water continued flowing from the wells and oases in the locale of the temple so that next year there would be water for the next tribe to arrive.    After the calamity, which most of the Kay'on knew little about and refer to it as Ala'as'exus'yon or The Drying that Ends the People, the rituals have not worked well, every year, there is less water in the oases and wells of the ruins and the edges of the desert are expanding further.

Common Taboos

Wasting water is the biggest taboo, and can lead to exile into the desert, which is almost always a death sentence.    Entering a tent without being invited is considered extremely rude, as that is a place where the concealing robes and headdresses worn out in the desert can be left aside and so is a place for family and close friends.


Beauty Ideals

The Kay'on prefer rounded features on both men and women, a sign of a well fed and watered person who knows discipline and survival and honours the traditions of dwelling in the great desert.

Gender Ideals

A patriarchal society led by the eldest man of the group who is most experienced with water discipline and guiding through the terrain of the dessert. The women's task is finding water, and at any time in a tribe there are at least two Kay'asha or Water Witches, women trained in the arts of both mundane and magical water finding, with each of the Kay'asha having an apprentice at any time.

Courtship Ideals

A man who wishes to court a woman must present her family with a price in water rations, as a family with fewer women will find less water. These days, this is mostly a symbolic gesture, but some tribes will take this seriously.
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