Taghaimer Ethnicity in Destiny | World Anvil
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Taghaimer

Information sourced from 'Varieties of Faith', 'An Adventurer's Guide to the Known World' and 'A Gentleman's Guide to Swords-For-Hire'

Written by David_Ulph

To an extent, bounty hunting has existed for as long as civilised society in one way or another. Early imperial records from the Third Era before the height of Doldreic Hegemony speak of cults to Libra which would don wolves heads and hunt down those evading justice in service of their lady. When the offer of money came into the picture is vague, but by the Raised Banners Uprising against the Empire in 3E 780, prices were placed upon the collection of the heads of as many imperial officials as the ringleaders could think of. Though this wasn't long after the first Tagims came into the Empire's borders. They may not have introduced the concept of bounty hunting, but it would be remiss of anyone to not mention that those Catfolk certainly perfected it.
'Wandering Judicar; A Select History of Justice'

Introduction

An ethnic pride of Leonin - the lion-like Catfolk of the Pride Lands between the City-State of Khasahmir and the Black Crag mountain range to the Great Desert of Rostau - who are united on the religious belief that they are blessed by the Cat-King Taghaim, a god of conquest, gambling and strength. Ostracised in their own society for their faith in Taighaim, the few isolationist Taghaimers (known throughout the Holy See Territories as 'Tagims') remaining in exile all excel in the hunting down of mortals their forefathers made a name for Leonin throughout the lands the Holy See now rule over.

Culture

Customs & Dialects

What sets Taghaimers from the rest of Leonin and Catfolk-kind is their aforementioned faith in the Cat-King Taghaim as opposed to the Cat-Queen Gha-Rhona. This has put both cultural sects on opposing paths which led to such groups developing as distinct ethnicities of Leonin. The Taghaimer are patriarchal as opposed to the usual Leonin matriarchy, which has arguably led the Taghaimer to more easily integrate into the societies of the Holy See Territories. While these are founded more on equal qualities than not, faith in God-King Courga pushes most figures of importance in the Territories to be male.
 
The Taghaimer culture in itself is unique as it acts more as a cult and path of life rather than the ethnicity it may have originated as. While almost all Taghaimer are Leonin
Catfolk, it is not unknown for a Taghaimer Coalition Leader to adopt the orphans of those they have killed and indoctrinate them into their way of life as a Taghaimer no matter their original race, religion or culture. These orphaned Taghaimer are treated as one of their own within the Pride and will have artisan armour fashioned for them so that they may resemble their Leonin comrades when on the hunt.
 
Taghaimer society, or Prides, are - by 4E 297 - comprised of hidden clans scattered throughout the Pride Lands and surrounding areas, kept secret from the Leonin Prides who worship the Cat-Queen. Detesting their ethnic cousins, the Taghaimer Prides have developed a dialect of the Leonin language which they speak in hushed purrs within their secret dens though will not risk to utter these words of praise to the Cat-King in public society throughout the Pride Lands and Khasahmir.

Exile & Faith

We do not huddle in one place, we span the Mortal Realm.
We need no lords or leaders, there is no snake to cut off the head.
We have no requirement for the blades you confiscate, we can cut your tongue with a single claw.
We are more than a people or an army, we are a culture, a faith, an idea.
You cannot kill an idea, but this idea can certainly kill you.
Translated excerpt from the Proclamation of Coalition Leader Gogtio of the Taghaim Pride
 
The biggest piece of Taghaimer culture is their religious exile. For a time, the Taghaimer Pride were notorious for being warlike conquerors fighting across the Pride Lands with and against the Nameless Empire, the Yoshan Trading Empire and the Twinaxe Settlers. However, over time the Taghaimer people moved away from this state for a reason not fully understood though believed to relate to the Coalition Leader of Taghaim being bested in a duel by the Pridematron of Leonin, most Taghaimer have become bounty hunters, selling their skills to various individuals and factions across the Mortal Realm.
 
Part of this bounty hunting culture is the ritualistic exiling a Taghaimer will undergo when coming of age, which allows the rest of the Mortal Realm to benefit in this forced exporting of Taghaimer culture. When the Coalition Leader of the Pride deems the Taghaimer of-age, they will be forced to leave the ancient boundaries of what was once conquered by the Taghaimer people and prove themselves as a worthy warrior under Taghaim's eyes. After a sufficient count of kills under their belt facilitated by the weave of fate that the Taghaimer falls upon (what a Tagim would call having a bounty offered to them), then their Cat-King would give them a sign or omen that their time to return from the nomadic life to one of rebuilding the Taghaimer Kingdom and dismantling faith in the Cat-Queen throughout the Pride Lands.
 
Relishing in the hunt, a Tagim will only accept contracts of bounties rather than any simple mercenary or sellsword assignments like the Hinterlandic Bluecaps would. Acting instead as mercenaries which specialise in dispensing justice, whether balanced or flawed, for personal profit. This usually concerns hunting down and collecting criminals and other rogue individuals acting against the interests of the patron. While in the Territories the profession is governed by the Bondsmans' Guild and set bounties must themselves be legal and registered with prices for dear or alive, a patron must provide an incredibly enticing offer to tempt a Tagim from retrieving the bounty alive.
Summer Camp Prompt #5

Notable Tagims

Koila was a Tagim active until a decade prior, who left her bounty hunting to go on a life of exiled adventuring with her now-husband Blood Hunter Ulrich and becoming Koila of the van Montford Pride. Koila and Ulrich are known
 
Mentioned heavily in the writings of Glandragor the Ox, including in 'An Adventurer's Guide to the Known World', Tagim Eremoz of the Black Crag Pride was active throughout the Great Desert of Rostau in bounty hunting bonds with the Tithemasters of the Dead. Paid in riches beyond belief, Eremoz is one of the few Tagims who actively chose to remain in exile in order to travel with the caravans of Kheperic Beetles to indulge in life's greatest pleasures for the small price of enforcing the Bone Tithe on debtors.
 
Some records also hint to a lone armoured Tagim known only as Jin active during the early Warlord Period. Jin betrayed a contract with a militant remnant cell of the Midlandian Empire to recover a Child, by kidnapping said Child and fleeing from the cell. While the leader of the local cell was confirmed to be killed by Jin in protection of the Child, it is unknown of eithers fate due to the lack of written record in the Warlord Period.

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Cover image: by Matt Rhodes

Comments

Author's Notes

  I guess you could say this is my big cat answer to Mandalorians? I can certainly see the similarities in an exiled culture living as isolated bounty hunters, which I gave a not-so-subtle nod to in the tale of Jin and the Child. Bloody love that show, but any influences it had on me here were definitely not deliberate. These Leonin have been on my plate for a while and I was waiting until I first mentioned the Tithemasters before introducing these guys. Luckily, I just finished the Kheperic Beetles which did just that!


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Jul 15, 2021 19:10 by Time Bender

A fascinating article! This kind of reminds me of Skyrim in a minor way. I always enjoy reading about a cat-folk! Great job. :D