The Ghostwalker Dwarves
Ghostwalker is the name that has been given them, they will tell you have have no name, and no need for such things. There is only their duty, they guard the Sapphire Sands from those who they think would do harm to the World Tree that is there. I wouldn't cross them, there is more than a little truth the the rumors that dwarves buried the City of Sleeping SkullsHe had to get back.... had to warn them. These were not dwarfs, he had fought dwarfs before. Stalked them, even in their own tunnels, but these... Fae hunters were a better alternative. At least with them there was a chance. Sven's only saving grace was that he had been the rear guard, cold comfort that fact provided now. He had watched, almost in a daze as the columns frontrunners had simply collapsed, limbs, heads and bodies flying apart as if by magic. Then the weapons, and the dwarves that wielded them started to.... not appear, but coalesce. As more and more loyal thralls, and eventually vampires, started to fall panic set in. Some saught to escape as bats or wolves, and were quickly captured in nets and brought down. Others tried to escape as a mist, only to learn that the weapons these dwarfs wielded were just as effective at cutting us down in that form. The worst fate, though, awaited those who sought refuge in what should have been a safe haven. Those that were able attempted to step into Cysgodol to make their escape. The shadow plane may be dangerous, but it is a known refuge for those advanced enough to access it at will. At least that is what we are taught. One step into Cysgodol is all Sven took, then he fled back to take his chances in the real world. If he survived this encounter what he had seen would haunt his nightmares for many centuries to come. Vampires, all alive, some even able to scream still and doing so constantly. All strung up, and strung is the correct word, staked to pillars, their veins pulled from their bodies and woven together into a glowing crimson net stretching as far as Sven had cared to look. The whole thing was tended by dwarves that had no business looking as hale as they did in Cysgodol, each carrying what looked like oversized sewing needles, and one manning what looked like a spinning wheel. And so Sven stepped back to the Material Plane, and did something that he was warned to do only in times of desperation. He ran and tapped into his Blood Reservoir. He pushed himself, the lands blurring by, He dodged into and out of hazards he never would have chanced at slower speeds, running straight though a patch of Harpoon Cactus, dodging through several fields of Rock Lobster that they had passed on their trip out. Even pausing to break open a bee hive he happened to pass.
A half dead, almost unrecognizable body flopped into camp. Santiago glanced at it, then quickly did a double take. "BLOOD SLAVE TO THE WALL! BLOOD SLAVE TO THE WALL NOW!" As the call was carried throughout the camp, Santiago knelt over the body to offer comfort and let whoever it was know that help was on the way, only to watch in horror as one of his legs and his left arm from the elbow down collapsed into pools of blood. Whoever this vampire was, it was unlikely that the blood slave would arrive in time to save them, not if they had needed to tap into their blood reservoir to replace lost limbs. Suddenly, the wounded vampire reached up and grabbed Santiago by his overcoat. "That place, we are anathema there. Let the Elders know, to venture to the Sapphire Sands is to die, or worse. You must let the know... our entire platoon... I am the last... the dwarves..." and with that, this scout perished, dissolving away to the fate that awaited to those who had drained their blood reservoir.
Major language groups and dialects
Dwarvish and Common, as well as several planar languages.
Shared customary codes and values
The World Tree will be protected, it is a pledge our clan took in time immemorial and we hold to it.
Common Dress code
Armed and Armored at all times, Ready to respond to any threat to the World Tree.
Coming of Age Rites
When Ghostwalker dwarfs come of age, they venture out into the desert on what is a combination of vision quest, shamanistic rite of passage, and a warlock pact. At the same time it is none of these. They go out, to retrieve something, a desert fruit, a male Origami Butterfly, or even a poison sac from a harpoon cactus. These are then used in a ceremony that binds the ghostwalkers to the planes, or perhaps thins their connection to the material plane. Theories disagree, and they dont exactly lend themselves to being studied. They can cross planes, although they appear to spread themselves most across the material, the ethereal, Cysgodol, and the Fae realms.