Clans of the Ghenid

Mother Negheru created the ghenua from her shed fur. She imbued them with her blood and will. Then she set them loose and told them to make their way and bring back bounty and power. And on each she set her Chains.
In time 12 mothers and their daughters returned. These first mothers and THE first of the clans. The S'ua. The daughters are not called the second, but rather Shav-Asavua. The Beasts/ Demons of the Trail/ path/ hunt. They were bound by Negheru and the S'ua and are the thousand demons who serve them as generals and commanders, hunters and agents of retribution and obedience. Their daughters, the D'ua, are the mothers of the Clan lines and the first S'oang (matrirachs, first of band). All of the Great Mother Negheru's children are still bound to her as each generation is bound to the one before by Aedoteerua: The Soul Chain .

"You should not keep a warm place in your stomach for the slave. Slaves are dirt under us, they exist to serve. They are part of the teerua (eternal/ ghost chain), held forever, and so familiar. Only crahuero (blood kin) and Whahuero-hǂ (hide kin/ Clan) should have that place in your stomach."

The clans and lineages. They may have once related to locations and living conditions. Clans are all under local dominion, excepting the Chains going back to S'ua and D'ua (from whom the Clan names are derived). No living Ghenid is S'oang-hǂ to an entire Clan. The ghosts and shadows are a direct link to history and impose a conservative unification in Ghenid. The language doesn't change from group to group, aside from a few words imported. Likewise the language is anchored in communications with ancestral ghosts.

1. Shav-hǂ. (wide banded stripes, "Large path") : Ael (black stripes and light grey to dark grey coat)- Aeghu (A conservative clan, known for producing Priestess. Coat is light brown to dark leather brown with black stripes and grey to black mane) - ǂFu ( brown stripes verging to red shaded). These clans are tightly directed by their Underworld ancestors and are more harsh and savage.
2. Whalacra ( The Bloodhide: red tinged coats) : G’Yeb - Fnue -Ghid ( Priestess, another clan with a large number of priestesses) : conservative. solid, narrow stripes. The Whalacra are noted for toughness,both mental and physical. They frequently follow S'oang who are priestesses.
3. Rhu’onwha (The Nighthides: Dark brown to nearly black) Rhu’onwha - V’Laf - Mngi’pah. These Ghenid are more night and dark oriented. They have reputation as excellent trackers and hunters.
4. Nghael - Vǂyev : the masked clans - Nghael (hide reversed) have light brown/ fawn spots and dark brown coat with a lighter facial region. Vǂyev have dark muzzles, pronounced black or dark brown masks around their face and eyes, irregular spotted pattern.  
5. HiǂKhur - Mokree (tints of green and chartruse in the coats) spotted. They are reputed to be tireless in fights and hunting. They also make weapons from Bog iron and know the secret of it's making.
6. ( The Ghosthskins: Light blonde gold/ silver or even white) Whalua - Pawhusa - Uacra’sa (First Ghost warriors) spotted, black, brown or grey on coat that is light tan gold) or blonde silver. Of all the clans, the Ghosthides tend to unify more as families within a clan and follow one leader for all the Whalua, Pawhusa and Uacra'sa within a tribe. This frequently makes them tribal leaders.
7. Adkhee (brown rosette spots) - Eǂyelfua (black spots in rings) - N’Falue: rosettes. These clans keep the secrets of making the Ghenid Great Bow.
8. Dolra - Eelyevoah: Dolra have 3 spot clusters. Eelyeoah have spots in dark red or burgundy. These clans have a tradition of a ghost cra-oang (Cra-oangua) serving S'oang. It is said they sacrifice sons or younger daughters to be the commander of the chained.
9. R’Ngau - brown with narrow crescent stripes. They are known for cunning and wits. They also can take on voice or appearance of their Chained briefly. 
10. Gha’z - ochre coat with dark brown or back spots. They have a reputation for physical strength and vitality.
11. Long coat clans. D’Yenee, Wheo-ahvu : The D'Yenee also have burgundy colored striping rather than the spots of Wheo-ahvu. They prefer cooler regions and underground caverns and more easily overheat in hot weather.
12 . Veyah-oon : eye spots
13. (sorcerers) ǂPkoah - more of a tribe in Ghenid culture. No formal leaders and no specific coat colors or patterning. (see ǂPkoah: The Ghenid Sorcerer ).

Structure

A clan or group is oang. Each tribe has a S'oang-hǂ (first of the large group) as each clan within a tribe has a S'oang. A group of wandering males is Oang-ht ( small group). Only females may be S'oang-ht, S'oang or S'oang-hǂ.

Cra-oang are the bound blooded who gain place and status by being bound to the S'oang.  These may be daughters, cousins, others from other clans and families. The general is properly C'ra-oang. A personal band is Cra-oang-ht. The Cra-oang-Hǂ is the war queen's band who are bound not only by S'oang-ht but by S'oang-hǂ. It only takes a few moments to cast a Chain, but it is added each day as everyone under a S'oang takes the chain of their S'oang. The S'oang then take the Chain of the S'oang-hǂ. Some S'oang-hǂ may take Chains on everyone in the tribe and the oang-ht. This is a lengthy ceremony.

In an oang of males the leader is Pa'oang. They may have Cra-pa'oang. Or collectively they are crateerua (in the hard ghost binding/ shakle). V'crateerua (your shackled), M'crateerua (their shackled), T'crateerua (my shackled). The S'oang, or Pa'oang have various levels of command and control over the crateerua. Some view them as absolute property like slaves and restrict what they can do or whom they might associate in the clan or tribe. Others may take a more relaxed view of expected obedience from extended family bonds to contract aligned association (where they may have bonds with others in the clan or tribe).

Additionally Ghenid have the Shadow. A familiar type bond between a living Ghenid and a ghost of the family or clan line. The Shadow is an ancestor chosen by mother, aunties, grandmother or possibly even another ghost ancestor with strong chains on a living relative. Males will go to other clans and tribes. They might be given a moderately powerful Shadow female to strengthen her ghost and add to her tomb holdings. The male is usually given a male ancestor's ghost - a brother or son who can be brought back under family control -taken from m'crateerua of another clan or family by the additions of new Chains after death. Or if lost with the male in another clan or family, is still someone of little worth, and the Chain never goes away, only becomes weaker. Daughters get the ghosts of sisters, aunties, possibly grandmothers or older. A very powerful old ghost can dominate and control a young female, rapidly making her a puppet. Most living relatives try to resist this and put those they control in place as Shadow. A disappointing female might even be given a male Cra-mueo ghost at adulthood bonding as a mark of shame.

Culture

Ghenid are matriarchal with coat base and spot or stripe patterns inherited from maternal lines. Clan is immediately identifiable by coat and spots. The next level is bloodline, or crahuero. Males inherit the bloodline clan as shown by coat. They are always lower than females but between males gain status by mother, sisters or S'oang they are in chain to.

Status with females is a combination of inherited status from mother, individual drive, chains held against you ( a penalty) vs what Chains you hold over others, how large a group you have backing or obeying you and under your chain, as well as how powerful your Shadow is and what Chains it holds. Tribal leaders will be a strong female from the largest clan or family and likely a powerful ghost Shadow ancestor. Clan leaders are females with the most supporting daughters and Cra-Mueo. T'cruateerua females count as well in clan or cra-oang or cra-oang-ht.

Ghenid lose status with more Chains on them than they hold. With no supporting crateerua. No living daughters or even sons. Ghosts are both very powerful and very weak at the same time. Most are inactive in or harmed by daylight. Ghenid become Whaerso if disabled, chronically ill or if ruled by addiction. If they die- this is their eternal condition. The waste of skin. Most would rather die healthy and strong and be this way as an eternal ghost. It is also pathetic to die old, withered, physically weak and toothless - even if sharp minded and holding many chains and oang-hǂ.

Disbandment

Tribes may break up from clan divisions, death of a tribal leader and internal conflict where several candidates rise and fight for position or from raids and attacks that reduce tribal populations. Disease has swept through tribes, dramatically reducing numbers and causing disbandment. Females that change tribes frequently must fight for place and status. The easiest way is to take the Chain of an established, ranking female as Crateerua. If a female comes to a tribe with strong crateerua backing as S'oang or S'oang-ht - with daughters, cousins, and cra-mueo she may threaten or fight for place. If several tribes meet and merge, the dominant females of the clans will measure each other, fight for position and then the most powerful and dominant will fight for tribal S'oang-hǂ.

Military

The base of the society is the Crahuer(o). The blood line(s). Mothers ( Crazhnee - blood mother, Eicrazhnee - old blood mother - Grandmother. M'eizhnee - aunt. E'icrazhnee is the title of The Grandmother - Negheru), cubs. Daughters (Hingo-ht: little sisters) commanding brothers (Padv) , cousins (M'hingo: Their sisters, M'po : Their brothers), sisters ( T'hingo : My sisters) and the crateerua. Mother, aunt or grandmother is the ruler. Their troops are small raiding parties. Scouts. just a handful of Ghenid.

The Crahuero-hǂ is the Clan: The greater bloodcord. Also Whahuero - Hide cord or line, as Clan usually just tracks to the subclans and not the greater coat pattern relations. Whalua being the exception. Now they have more mueo'oang and crateerua in cra-mueo serving S'oang and S'oang-ht. Many bloodline families ruled by the most numerous and powerful of the clan and skin. The S'oang-ht (first of the small group) fight and jockey for position - gathering wealth and power. The strong feed the weak, at the cost of Chains. Forced obligation and obedience. Now they are dozens of warriors/ hunters. The Cra-oang as second or general to the S'oang. Larger numbers of established powerful males bonded to the ranking clans and bloodlines and younger, weaker, and fewer bound to others in descending ranks. The powerful take what they want, unless you can hold it somehow with Chains, wits or strength.

The Tribe: the Oang-hǂ or large group. Many Whahuer ( plural = Whahuero) and each with their bands of fighters. Chains to the S'oang-hǂ force resources up or allow the powerful to take what they want. Resources flow back down to daughters, commanders and at the price of more Chains. The S'oang-hǂ has the Cra'oang and crateerua sisters, daughters, cousins and daughters (and possibly sons) of other Crahuero and cra-mueo. The war bands now number dozens to hundreds. Only in the great War of Inx, under the wizard Bihigan, did the tribes grow larger and field thousands of warriors. Many ghosts recall these glory days and hunger for a return.

Technological Level

Ghenid actual technical skills are using stone, wood, hides and occasionally bog iron.  They have opposable thumbs and good grip strength but less fine motor skill than humans, fae races, Bahku, Centaur, Minotaur or even Octnon.  Bugbear have a similar level. They understand the uses of more advanced technology and materials but do not possess the technical skills nor the disposition to learn them over years of study. This is slave work in Ghenid view. Most "Why" questions are silly cub things. "How" is more important, except in judging motivations of others.  There is no point in doing when you can take.

Foreign Relations

Ghenid raid each other's tribes and bands. They waylay travelers and caravans. They raid settlements and camps of other kinds, including monster types. They unite against other species or bigger threats. They do tend to live up to ransom settlements or use the Chains on the captives to push for what they want. They can be bought off and pointed at others.

Other species are just lessers. They don't have the Chain. Ghenid are meant to rule and Chain everything and everyone. Just as the Demon Queen demands. Not that Ghenid practice rulership, administration or statecraft. If it isn't Chained and marked, it is yours to take. If the Chains are weak - can you take it? Can you hold it? Command it? They are concerned with the things and comforts and not the details.

Agriculture & Industry

The tribes and clans keep small livestock such as sheep or goats. Some horses may be kept in tribes where horseback riding is known. Cattle and oxen are slaughtered as Chained prizes. Keeping them is considered too difficult without a population of slaves.

They do not practice agriculture. They raid for provisions. They harvest some wild crops, but work is harder than raiding and generally less productive to Ghenid thinking. Ghenid are stronger, smarter and tougher and it is the right of the powerful and the fault of the weak.

Education

Mother wants her cubs to do well. It increases her wealth and power when they are female and they have cubs of their own.  Males still have Chains, though they will likely give more to the new S'oang and be held by them.  They are lower value.  Brothers, sisters and cousins or other tribal cubs frequently practice fighting, wrestling, stealth and will swap Chains on each other.

Mothers will teach fighting and defensive skills.  She may offer Chains or have cubs taken under Chain commands by Mothers, grandmothers or aunties.  Rarely a tribal leader of different clan will take a cub of a subordinate clan, Chain them and train them as their crateerua.  Cra-mueo may also offer training under trade for sex, Chains or goods or some combination.
DISBANDED/DISSOLVED
Currency
Ghenid prefer to take what they want. They will barter and bargain, and will ransom captives who have been repeatedly Chained. The chained my be compelled to come to the chain holder (pulled). They may have been given a command that may be pushed by the Chain. Ultimately upon death their ghost will be pulled to the Underworld and the tomb of the Chain holding Ghenid.  Within the society the Chain is frequently a base of transactions - who takes them and who holds them.  Chains for a fine bow? Or food, drink and Crua. "Ghost blood or War/ Fighter's Ghost" . Traded slaves or crateerua males.

Ghenid in contact with civilization may use coin in trade. Wild tribes will simply use the shiny metals as decorations. Ghenid that have moved into civilization and proximity may change habits, but they still desire to claim, Chain and commit to their tomb books, places and things. A poet or singer might be chained and slain to go immediately as a slave ghost in the underworld. Or ghenid oang might fight over possession before the prize can be sent to the Underworld. If a prize might be lost, it is best sent to the Underworld to wait it's owner.  Chain it. Claim it. Hold and defend it from others.
Judicial Body
Theft is an alien concept to Ghenid. Everything of significance that you have and control is Chained. The Chain allows you to tell direction and distance to Chained things. Object relics (object ghosts) and ghosts may be pulled to the Chain owner. The living feel a pull. Material objects stay where they are and may be used normally. Ghosts watch at night (and some in the day) and report to the ones who hold their Chains. Chain holders can twist the Chain and demand answers. Chain influence decrease over time and distance. More Chains from the same Chainer have more influence. Multiple Chains with many holders diffuse the power of any one Chain holder. What matters is that you can hold and to reclaim what is yours.

Ghenids fight. They plot and scheme. But killing another Ghenid in status disputes and dealing with opposition is a limited solution - except in becoming a clan or tribe leader. It sets back a rival. They may be dead, but they are not gone as in other species. Living ghenid who hold a Chain on the dead can pull them back and they can tell what happened. And the dead can attack the living by eldion powers. Likewise the dead who hold Chains on the living can place compulsions on them to act or summon up the ghost to the living world. Deaths where a blame can be placed are judged by highest rank females -usually ones who have kin interests in the subjects. They might appeal to a higher ranked female - but it will settle on the side of the more physical, ghostly or politically powerful. Might makes right. Don't attack those who belong to the more powerful.

The others who have power and influence are priestesses and priests of Negheru, the Great Mother. The priest class surrenders all they are and own to the Great Mother. They gain powers and are promoters of conquest, domination and increasing the holdings of all clans to build the Great Mother's armies to fight other underworld powers and ultimately to take the whole world under their control. Priestesses are considered impartial but test obedience and faith.

The Sorcerer or ǂPkoah is beyond and separate. One could wipe out a family or clan branch in a tribe, and face no retribution. He is turned to when a definite and powerful edge is needed. He is Pa-oang of any males, and occasionally females, Chained to him. Over these and issues involving them he is judge as well as lord and master.
Related Ethnicities


Cover image: https://azgaar.github.io/Fantasy-Map-Generator/ by mutterwolf

Comments

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21 Dec, 2021 22:32

So incredibly detailed! I know they're spiritual and not real, but I can just imagine family trees becoming so much more complex with the addition of shadows and chains. They're so unified as a people's in their beliefs, but it's also those same beliefs that keep them separated, very intriguing. I'd like to hear more about the differences between the clans, beyond their inherited fur patterns.   I think it might be good to keep a dictionary of all the in-world words on the side, I found myself forgetting and having to go back a few times.

Kriltch, arcanities not included.
22 Dec, 2021 08:05

Thanks for the inquiry and feed back! Dictionary is a good idea.   For other species in my world there is some question about afterlife. Fae don't really have that as they know they are spiritual entities. Humans depend on belief and word from necromancers and priests and the rare raised or ghost. Ghenid, they know in stomach and bone, and live it every night with their Shadow familiar, or those they bring back as ghosts by the Chain. And that will be in greater detail in the Adulthood rites article.