Dune Dancers

Dune Dancers, also known as mirage mages, are an order of military wizards local to the Desert of Desolation. They offer magical support to the Durpari army, and when roaming the desert as civilians, will provide protection to those unable to defend themselves.   Rather than focusing on elemental might, Dune Dancers blend martial skills, illusions and control over sand in concert with infantry and cavalry tactics. Their unique style is reminiscent of elven blade dancers, yet distinctly different. Eliciting impressions of sandstorms as they flash unstoppably through combat, mirage mages use dance like patterns to confound enemies in their strikes against them. However, rather than an increase in agility and speed the mirage mage leaves confounding after-images in their movement.   Rather than being mere visual illusions, these after images allow the dancer to strike then ‘slide’ back into the space they left. Dancers that are fast enough or have enough foresight are difficult to hit, while masters of both require immense luck or spell craft to land a blow against.   Dune Dancers are trained by the warrior monk Guardians of Eonnoe, swearing the oath to defend civilisation and protect the helpless that the Guardians require of their students. All follow a strict code of ethics, and each learns to master a single combat art that separates one dancer from another; twin scimitars being the most traditional form.   Dune Dancers retire from military service around the age of 30 and become wandering marshals and justices of the peace, in accord with the vows taken with the Guardians of Eonnoe. They will cross and re-cross the desert many times during the following years, stopping at widely-scatter oases and outlying settlements to provide aid against raiders, judge legal cases, or carry messages and supplies from one homestead to the next.   Marshals will spend years dedicated to this wandering service, learning new magical forms and developing new spells suited to their personal abilities. Each marshal’s abilities uniquely define them; some become healers, others curse breakers or monster hunters. Eventually, as they start to become too old to maintain the wandering lifestyle, the marshal will return to the Dune Dancers’ academy to train the next generation of mirage mages.   A marshal’s duties may vary from weighing in matters of community, such as presiding over a trial or divorce, to directly gathering and leading adventurers to end a threat while the Durpari Army protects the community, and everything else in-between.   It is common for a marshal Dune Dancer to become a named hero widely known by reputation in the desert, as their personal martial style and spells set them singularly apart from the rank and file, and even other marshals.   Notable Marshals in the Dune Dancers
-Tefron the Tower
-Rhesheel, the Pharaoh's Fist
-Washeed the Wise
-Kortek the Lie Breaker
-Selial, She who is Sharp


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