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Letun

Written by KoshcheiBessmertnyi

The letuns (literally, "flyers"), are also known as “flaming serpents”, and are the most distinctive of nechist’. Perhaps, all they share with their distant cousins is netherworldly origin. Otherwise, they are more draconic than fae. When seen abroad, they may be on a mission from one of the great sperpents, perhaps even their chief, the great Zmei Gorynych himself. More likely, they are simply hunting to satisfy their hunger, desire for treasure, or passionate urges. Unlike other nechist', letuns lack domains of their own, but fly through the air, driven by their burning desire. Typically, they target humans who are alone in their house, and who are consumed by longing for an absent spouse or lover. Flying in through an open window, the chimney, or simply walking through the door unseen, the letun takes the form of the person being longed for (or perhaps a form associated with an erotic fantasy), and seduces the human, lulling them to sleep after consummation, and clouding their memory of the congress. The flame serpents then go forth to seek their next conquest, or retire to the wilds. But the fire they burn with is not mere inner heat, for like true serpents, they often expel deadly flames as well.

Basic Information

Biological Traits

The most frightening letun characteristic is their ability to exhale fire. This seems to be possessed by true serpentine letuns, as well as by their half-human progeny.   They also possess strong personal magnetism, though it is not known whether this is a natural or supernatural feature.

Civilization and Culture

Interspecies Relations and Assumptions

Half-letuns   The products of letuns' trysts with humans are raised in the human household as children of both human parents (since the letun's magic causes them to resemble the other parent as well). Some argue that these children are in fact no different than changelings engendered by domovois or leshys, but as these changelings grow, many of them begin to increasingly resemble their serpentine parent. They may be born with, or develop, reptilian skin, reddish pupils, lidless eyes, vestigial horns, hooves instead of feet, and somewhat elongated muzzles filled with sharp, reptilian teeth. Some half-letuns look rather monstrous, some – incredibly beautiful, but in either case, they exercise a magnetic attraction that often proves irresistible to objects of their desire.   Character   When they reach physical maturity, the half-letuns begin to exhibit behaviors similar to those of their nechist’ parent. They are relentless Casanovas or temptresses, spending most of their time chasing down the objects of their desire, and then figuring out how to most effectively abandon them, avoid angry relatives, and move on to the next conquest.   When pursuing someone, the half- letun focuses on nothing else. She is incredibly persuasive and slick, willing to risk everything, but also capable of appearing emotionally vulnerable in order to draw people in.   Half-letuns are similarly single-minded when focusing on their other interests – gaining fame and wealth. They are often going on quests for their beloved – though such quests may be easily abandoned when confronted with difficulties, when they can be rationalized away, or simply forgotten because the half-letun has acquired a new person of interest (or item, or goal).   Even if born as simple peasants, half-letuns are driven by wanderlust, and rarely stay settled for long. Many become troupers, mountebanks, or people-at-arms, while some even flee to the steppe and become nomads. As flaming serpents pay special attention to aristocratic households in their travels, their offspring may be come from the nobility as well.

Lifespan
Immortal (full letun). Human (for changelings).
Average Length
15 feet long or more
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Covered in reptilian scales, though also capable of glowing. Usually long and serpentine, frequently appearing without legs. Some specimens sport horns. Half-human changelings may possess any of these characteristics, as well as an elongated maw, sharp teeth, a forked tongue, hooves, a snake tail, or red eyes. These features are sometimes hidden on the body and covered up. Nevertheless, half-letuns are also highly attractive, even if they appear monstrous.

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