Origin: Dabeshi were created at some point in the Second Age to test the strength of elves. Maylar was the primary architect of their creation and hyenas are one of Maylar's sacred animals. Many scholars assume Greymoria was involved because dabeshi speak a dialect of Grauen and have a high susceptibility to becoming undead.   A few figure Nami might have been involved because she was so instrumental in creating orcs and orcs and dabeshi are fairly similar in some respets, but most Rovers dispute this pointing out that orcs are a lot more organized and adaptable than dabeshi. orcs can sometimes be reasoned with, dabeshi cannot.   A lot of their own creation stories involve the first dabeshi being elevated from hyenas, but no other race's stories corroborate this.     Second Age History: Dabeshi attacked elves and every other mortal race that dared step into their deserts and steppes. While extremely dangerous to individuals, they did not influence greater political events much beyond slowing down elven expansion in areas with dabeshi.     Surviving the Second Unmaking: Dabeshi did not cooperate with other races, even in the face of annihilation. It’s not even sure they slowed down their raids on other mortal races slightly. The main reason they survived is because the areas they inhabited were low priorities for the Demon Lords and dabeshi can eat almost anything and reproduce very quickly.     Recent History and Distribution: Dabeshi bounced back from the Second Unmaking very quickly. When the elves were brought down to a tiny fraction of their power and humans were still a young race, dabeshi took the opportunity to spread out around most of the world, a few would forcibly capture ships and enslave the crew to take them overseas.   For a few centuries, dabeshi roamed over a very wide area of Scarterra. They are not very organized at all. Ten steps forward, nine steps back. Most dabeshi were wiped out or driven away as humans and other races were able to project their strength better. Since dabeshi are a bane to all civilized people, they have to remote areas by default. Dabeshi can live almost anywhere but they prefer warm fairly dry areas, preferably where hyenas live.     Lifecycle and Society: Dabeshi reproduce and grow very quickly. Dabesh female give birth to one, sometimes two pups normally and pregnancies last three months. Dabesh pups are weaned in two months and become fully grown adults in less than three years. Once adults, dabeshi do not seem to age until they hit roughly thirty at which point they tend to age very quickly. The best a dabesh can hope for is to make it to thirty-five, but most dabeshi are killed by their own at the slightest hint of infirmity. Monogamy is unknown, dabeshi mate opportunistically. Children are raised by the whole tribe they are not given much coddling and more than a few young pups end up murdered for annoying an adult.   Dabeshi typically form tribes of thirty to a two hundred members depending on the local resources of an area. Most tribes are split into packs of six to fifteen members. Rule of a tribe goes to the strongest most cunning individual. A leader who shows weakness is going to be challenged, or just killed in their sleep. Challenges for pack leaders tend to be violent but they are rarely lethal.   Dabeshi hate almost everyone who is not a dabesh and they don’t really like other dabeshi much. They can eat almost anything organic, including very rotten carrion. They prefer meat. They prefer fresh meat and they like to eat their prey alive if possible, so they can hear their screams. Dabeshi are a slightly loyal to their own race, but dabeshi tribes will fight each other if they go too long without a good scrap with non-dabeshi. The only other creatures that dabeshi seem to like is hyenas who they often keep as pets.   If dabeshi are sated, they will take prisoners alive for torture. Dabeshi will force prisoners to perform hard labor or entertaining displays for the dabeshi’ amusement until the dabeshi become annoyed or hungry and eventually eat them. Prisoners rescued from dabeshi are never the same, they usually have post-traumatic stress disorder. A few tribes even completely break their prisoners. A few tribes have been spotted with extremely feral and depraved humans fighting alongside them. These tribes often have the best equipment and plan the most damaging raids on human lands.   Dabeshi can barely manage to make their own fires and sharp sticks. Nearly all of their weapons, armor, and tools are stolen or scavenged from more productive races. There are rumors that anti-social spirits or Fair Folk will provide dabeshi with better weapons though they probably don’t give the dabeshi weapons. They probably leave them where dabeshi can find them.   Dabeshi speak a pidgin of Elven and Grauen. Characters with either language can usually manage crude communication with dabeshi. Characters with both languages can communicate almost fluently. Characters who speak both Elven and Grauen can buy full fluency in “Dabesh” for one experience point as if it’s a dialect. Most dabeshi of high intelligence (3 or higher) speak Common. A few Common words and phrases have begun permeating the dabesh dialect.     Religious Practices: Dabeshi are usually aware that they are a creation of Maylar but they are not particularly loyal or pious. A small number of more educated tribes are aware of the rest of the Nine. A few dabeshi will pray by yelling at the sky and demanding favors. Sometimes they even get it. A few dabeshi are favored souls or warlocks, but not many.     Dabesh Witherlings: If a mostly intact dabesh’s corpse is buried a few weeks, it has a very high chance of rising as a type of undead known as a witherling. Witherlings are fast and strong flesh eaters fairly similar to ghouls only they don’t carry Ghoul Fever (dabeshi are seemingly immune to it) and cannot spread the curse of undeath, only the curse of regular death. They do shed disease causing spores wherever they go. These diseases will not spread undeath or supernatural curses, but they are debilitating and potentially deadly. Thus, dabesh witherlings are nicknamed plague hounds.   Witherlings will not attack living dabeshi, unless the dabeshi attack them first or the witherling has not fed for an extremely long period of time. Dabeshi are immune to witherling disease spores as well. Witherlings do have a bad habit of depopulating an area of suitable prey, so dabeshi usually find witherlings as a nuisance. Dabeshi usually devour their own fallen members to prevent them from rising as witherling, unless they are forced to retreat from an area in which case they will hide their corpses to seed the land with witherlings out of spite, so the victors have to deal with the problem. Most experienced enemies of dabeshi are aware of the risk of witherlings, and usually burn the corpses of the fallen.   Witherlings retain their original language abilities but they tend to speak overly simplistically, even for dabeshi. Witherlings instinctively band together in packs with their own kind and retain enough intelligence to be able to scavenge weapons and armor.
Dabesh Character Creation   Playing a dabesh requires special permission from the Storyteller, even if you are agreed to play a game with evil characters. If allowed, playing a dabesh costs five freebie points.   Very Strong: Dabeshi have a minimum Strength of 2 rather than 1. They have a maximum Strength of 6 rather than 5. On top of this, orcs get -1 all non-magical Strength rolls, including inflicting damage. They get a -1 bonus on Willpower rolls when making feat of Strength checks.   Tough: Dabeshi receive an extra Bruised level.   Hyena Kinship: Animal Ken difficulties with hyenas are at -3 difficulty.   Disease Resistant: Deabeshi are completely immune to non-magical diseases caused by ingesting foul meat. They get a -3 difficulty break on Stamina rolls when resisting all diseases regardless of source, including magical diseases that allow Stamina rolls.   Fast Healers: Natural healing for dabeshi is three times as fast as it is for humans and most other humanoids. Dabeshi almost never become infected from untreated wounds.   Sharp Teeth: Dabeshi can inflict Strength +1 lethal damage with their sharp teeth but their humanoid bodies are not well suited to biting in combat. Dabeshi have to initiate a grapple before they can bite a foe.   Keen Senses: -1 difficulty all rolls involving Alertness   Insane: All dabeshi must take the derangement Flaw for which they receive no flaw points. Whatever chosen must enhance belligerence or violence such as paranoia, short fuse, sadism, or masochism.   Ill-tempered: +1 difficulty penalty all non-magical Charisma and Manipulation rolls when dealing with creatures who are not dabeshi or hyenas.   Somewhat dim: Dabeshi receive a +1 difficulty on all non-magical Intelligence rolls.
Typical Adult Dabesh Willpower 4   Strength 4, Dexterity 3, Stamina 3, Charisma 2, Manipulation 2, Appearance 2, Perception 2, Intelligence 2, Wits 2   Alertness 2, Athletics 2, Brawl 3, Dodge 2, Intimidation 3, Stealth 2, Melee 3, Survival 3   OK, OK, -1 -3, -5, Incap     Dabesh Pack Leader   Willpower 6   Strength 4, Dexterity 4, Stamina 4, Charisma 2, Manipulation 2, Appearance 2, Perception 2, Intelligence 2, Wits 2   Alertness 3, Athletics 3, Brawl 4, Dodge 3, Intimidation 4, Leadership 2, Stealth 3, Melee 4, Survival 3   OK, OK, -1 -3, -5, Incap
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Cover image: Symbol of the Nine by Pendrake


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