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Drakain

Drakains (or Dragon People) are dragons with sapient intelligence, and the ability to shapeshift into a hominin looking form. They are also the original henge: magical animals with the ability to take on a humanoid form. Their race were the ones that wrote down details of their enlightenment that were meant to teach future generations, some of which were stolen and lead to other species of henge coming into existence.   The race originated from sea dragons, but their new forms were able to interbred with the terrestrial dragons, later incorporating the two variants of true dragons.

Basic Information

Anatomy

The innate form of the Drakains are that of typical dragons, dependent on their clan.   Doragon clan have the appearance of terrestrial dragons: large scaly or feathered reptiles with four legs, a long tail, and leathery bat like wings on their backs.   Longryu have the appearance similar to sea dragons: a long wingless serpentine body with 4 short yet muscular limbs. Their head is large compared to the rest of the body, adorned with two antlers and their bearded face is dominated by a wide, flat nose with cat-like eyes, cattle ears, and a pair of whiskers.     A drakain's humanoid form can pass for a hominin, though they can have subtly distinctive features such as stilted pupils, noticeably sharper teeth, or long pointed or finned ears. This form may also retain traits of their original form such as horns on their heads, a dragon tail behind them, or dragonic wings that protrude from the back.

Biological Traits

Dermal Scales/Feathers: When they take on a humanoid form, Drakain scales or feathers also change appearance by becoming this form's clothing. Even as clothes they retain their dragon scale/feather properties, including growing back if damaged or lost. In their clothing form, they are removable and can be replaced with regular clothes.   Dragon Tail: Drakain's dragonic form have large tails to support their body weight. If retained on their humanoid form, it can be used to strike things but it also makes it awkward for lying on the back.   Dragon Wings: Drakains have two large leathery wings growing from their backs that resemble the structure of bat or feathered wings that can be used to fly. They can also be retained in their humanoid forms to acheive flight.   Dragon Horns: Drakains can retain the horns or antlers of their dragon form on their heads in their humanoid shape if they want.   Dragon Jaws/Claws: Drakains in their humanoid form tend to have noticeably sharper canine teeth than the natural humanoid races. They can also revert to their dragon fangs and claw shaped fingernails in their humanoid forms if needed.   Omnivorous: The humanoid form can potentially encourage a Drakian to eat things with things other than their innate diet of animal meat. This can include plant matter like grains, nuts, fruit, or vegetables or man made foods that sapient races tend to eat.   Elemental Affinity: Drakains are born with an elemental affinity, which grants them resistance to the breath weapon the individual uses.   Healing Coma: When mortally wounded, Drakains will often go into a deep slumber until they recover the damage. Depending on the damage, a drakain might vanish for weeks, months, or years to slumber or hibernate.     Breath Weapon: Drakains can expel various material or energy from their mouths, just like feral dragons. The type is determined by their inborn affinity and clan, doragons have either fire or lightning breath. Longryu can shoot pressurized streams of water from their mouths that can be frozen into ice.   Shapeshifting:   Drakains are capable of changing between three forms. Their dragon form is, of course, their natural form, with various different appearances depending of the dragon. They can also adopt a mostly hominin form that retains some aspects of their dragon form, primarily their tails and horns, with the option of manifesting wings; their scales likewise shape-shift into clothing in this form. The third form is a completely hominin one, retaining only the scales-turned-clothing, somewhat reptilian pupils, and sometimes pointed ears.   Drakains can use their stored magic power to shapeshift between forms and reverting to their original form actually uses less magical energy than the reverse. Their sorcery is retained in their humanoid forms but their physical attributes are scaled down to their size, roughly only somewhat stronger and durable than creatures of a similar size.     Flight: Drakains can fly in their dragon form with their large wings. Some Doragon drakains retain their wings on their back in their humanoid form to fly in that form.   Longryu normally lack wings, instead flying by using their magic power to push off the ground and propel through the air with their body shape.

Genetics and Reproduction

A female known as a drakaina will typically lay one or two eggs, although they can very rarely lay groups up to four. Drakaina in their humanoid forms can lay their eggs after being pregnant for up to nine months.   Their humanoid form provides drakina with breasts that allow them to breastfeed their young. It also allows them to reproduce with other humanoid species (natural, fey, etc.), resulting in hybrid henge offspring called hanyou. Drakain hanyou can be born from eggs if their mother has a strong dragon heredity or born live otherwise.   The fertility of drakains have been lower than that of wild dragons since the Ghulat Wars, although humanoid and hybrid births might lead to a steady increasing birth rate.

Growth Rate & Stages

Drakains have extraordinary lifespans, lasting over several millennia. Complementing their longevity is the fact that they tend to age slowly. Even their humanoid form will age slowly, as child like drakain can take up to 3000 years to appear as a young adults. Unlike other henge, they are capable of sorcery from birth, including their ability to shapeshift.   The lifespan of drakain hanyou is bit trickier to determine, usually they grow up to adulthood at the rate of their humanoid race but can live as long as their drakain parent. Those with even less dragon heredity, tend to have their humanoid parent's lifespans instead.

Dietary Needs and Habits

Drakains are similar to feral dragons in their eating habits, which mostly amounts to large animal meat or derived products like eggs. However, taking on the forms of humanoid races have encouraged them to also consume foods like grains, fruits, nuts, roots, or the prepared cuisine of sapient races.

Additional Information

Facial characteristics

A drakain's humanoid form can pass for a hominin, though they can have subtly distinctive features such as stilted pupils, noticeably sharper teeth, or long pointed or finned ears.

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

Dragon Senses: Drakains retain their dragon level of senses regardless of form, which includes a keen sense of smell, sight, and hearing.   Electroception: Raijitu doragon can sense the weak electrical impulses produced when living things move their muscles

Civilization and Culture

Gender Ideals

The dragon forms of both drakain clans have little difference between the sexes, beyond the slightly large sizes of males compared to females. Females find their role by being highly selective of the males they chose. Therefore, males have spend effort making themselves attractive to females, either by strength, wealth, or compassion for their mate.

Courtship Ideals

Due the era of decline for drakains, the standards for partner selection is more lax. The roles of both genders have altered over the generations due to influence of other races.   Drakains in their dragon forms typically are only interested during their mating season. Taking on their human forms however changes their instincts as hunans mate year round. Sex in their humanoid forms tends to be more pleasurable and they can also do so with other humanoid species.

Common Dress Code

While neither is a concern in their dragon forms, a drakain's humanoid form typically changes their scales into clothing that fits on a human body. The clothing design is dependent on the drakain's whim, but tends to reflect the surrounding cultures and societies around the individual as the race has never been big on these matters.

History

Antiquity   There was a naga named Dongfu who loved dragons, especially lóng because he could understand a lóng's will, he was able to tame and raise them well. He served the Emperor Shun in Penglai who gave him the family name Huanlong which means "Dragon Raiser". Deities of the Shen Bureaucracy were fascinated by the majesty and power of dragons and began to tame them as mounts and companions. The aquatic dragons, lóng were especially popular and so the gods used their theurgy to enlighten them with sapience and become the Longryu. Among the gifts given to the Longryu were intelligence and wisdom, power to command water, and the ability to change their size and even shape. Influenced by the growing Sramana movement and civilizations, they found that they could change their shape into a composite of the major races of the time: Elves, Dwarves, and Gnomes which happened to be humanoids. This form allowed the Longryu to better interact with the affairs of these rising players.   Some of the Longryu went on the breed with the terrestrial dragons, producing drakain offspring who had the looks and abilities of terrestrial dragons, later known as the Doragon clan. With the discovery of more abilities due to their enlightenment, the Drakains sought to record their processes so that future generations of their kind could continue to learn how to use their abilities responsibly. However, copies of tablets were taken by foxes who used these instructions to become Juweihu. Eventually they spread the knowledge to other creatures, leading to the many species of shapeshifting animals: henge.   Drakains maintained close connections to the deity authorities of Yougai and were often given their own fiefdoms to govern, typically a river, lake, or other body of water. People who lived near them revered the drakains almost as much as their gods, inspiring the name divine dragons. To better commune with the people at the time, some drakains temporarily took on a form humanoid largely modeled after one of the more prominent races at the time: elves.     Ghulat Wars   In the early days of the wars, the Drakains were one of the strongest units in the military forces of Yougai deities, especially the Shen bureaucracy. They were powerful against most ghuls or demons and the most effective counter to the Shaytan's aerial units and flying craft.   Things changed once an unknown infiltrator from the Shaytan forces obtained information about the deities armies, including the Drakains. Soon after, a mysterious infliction began to spread among the race, where many became infertile and individuals were losing their rational minds and basically reverting into feral dragons. With so many overpowered feral dragons causing destruction among their mortal followers, the deities other than the Shen and Amatsukami appointed blessings to heroes of those races to fight back the feral drakains. While the idea of heroes made to slay the feral drakains sounded good, it lead to the implication that dragons in general were meant to be fought and slain.   One of the ideas to avoid this catastrophe was by the Great Longryu Sage, Shenlong, who suggested his race take on their humanoid form to prevent the loss of sapience and attempt to hide among them in plain sight until the plague subsided. Those who heed his advice took on humanoid forms and either lived among these more populous races in secret to avoid persecution or worked as heroes for deities still on their side to find the source that made dragons lose their minds.   Many of the humanoid races of the land however, began to target Drakains that were discovered in extreme prejudice, abusing and mistreating them due to the lasting fear they held for the dragons, along with jealousy and hatred over the Drakains' continued longevity, and other traits. This caused a backlash where certain drakains rebelled against the deities who sent the heroes who slayed their kind by terrorizing and eating members of those heroes' races. While this was the case in most lands, the race was still had a stronghold in Yougai territory and were defended by its gods, even from other deities.     With the eventual defeat of the Shaytan, the ailment that caused the drakains to losing sapience and fertility started to slowly decrease over the centuries although those who lost their minds never regained them and instead assimilated into the wild dragon populations. The remaining drakains had to contend with abundance of natural disasters, reduction of magic power, and loss of prey species in the centuries to come after the war, gradually reducing their numbers even more.   Modernity   With the fall of civilizations, many remaining peoples began to forget about the race of shapeshifting dragons due to their scarcity and their wild counterparts were much more apparent and relevant. The departure of the Yougai Pantheons also led to decline in the protection of the race in that territory, led to even more going into hiding. Kept in secret or unaware of their heritage, many drakains assimilated into the mankind races for survival and either bred with them, whoever of their kind that they could find, or even dragons in the wild. The latter two cases would eventually lead to another difference from typical dragons, the ability to switch their elemental resistance and breath weapon based on which classical element they consumed.   Over the centuries a few groups remained that were able to retain the ancient cultural traditions of Penglai through the choas, including reverence of divine dragons. These groups sheltered the remaining Longryu families and bloodlines they could find, and were protected by them from threats in return. These hamlets and villages believed that they could resonate with the gods and convey their blessing even in their absence.     Once the civilizations of sapient beings began to rebuild, and the threat that dragons posed near forgotten by the masses, select members of the Longryu families became wandering priests and priestess who began to roam the world and find the remnants of their race among the world population.   Into the modern age, they have slowly found others, hybrids, and descendants of drakains that are interested in learning about their dragon abilities and history. For the most, they coexist peacefully with the prosperous races of Kaf and despite their small numbers, might finally be in a position where their small population can make a healthy recovery and experience growth.   Much of Doragon culture has been lost through the ravages of war and time, much like other antiquity cultures. Most is a patchwork of wild instincts, rituals from dominant cultures, a few stories passed down the generations. While also a minority, the Longryu were able to preserve more of their ancient culture due to being sacred of the people's in the former Penglai territory. Efforts are being made by able Longryu to reconnect with scattered Drakians to provide support and a sense of belonging.

Interspecies Relations and Assumptions

Drakains do most of their handiwork in their humanoid forms (where they have more dexterous hands). Other races have used the fallen off parts of dragons before like their scales, claws, or teeth as armor or weapons. Drakains have the benefit of easy access to these raw materials when they are naturally shed from their bodies and crafting them into durable tools or weaponry. Blades or powders are often made from their claws and teeth, while their scales tend to be made into clothing or armor.

Scientific Name
Drakon wyrmidon
Origin/Ancestry
Doragon, Longryu
Lifespan
30,000 years
Conservation Status
Vulnerable
Average Height
humanoid: 137 - 178 cm (4'6" - 5'10")
Average Weight
humanoid: 36 - 68 kg (80 -150 lb)

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