The Kiari are a diminutive race of near-humans native to the stranded easts, and can be found from south Qianna to Aerust. They are divided into two strains, the ancestral Truebloods and Aerustan Snowborn. Kiari of both strains are further divided into two physiological morphs called castes, the Provider Caste and the Sentinel Caste.
Worshipped-Sericil, Tioram, Lateeri
Although short, full grown Kiari have slender frames, and as such if they were to be viewed in a blank environment they would appear quite tall. They have a long, thin neck and narrow shoulders that contribute to a minimal silhouette. Their legs are long, giving them great speed and endurance over vast terrain. They have long ears that are thin and pointed, tilting backward and upward slightly past the back of the head. The lobes of their ears point down and back, and come to a sharp and narrow point.
By most near-human races standards their appearances are often quite fair, and even without taking their size into consideration they often stand out. Males of their species seldom have facial hair (although it is heard of amongst the Hill clans, likely due to the occasional occurrences of intermarriage between members of hill clans and diplomats from the west).
Both Castes of the Kiari share most of the races physiological traits, and to the uninitiated the best way to tell them apart is by size (which is not always totally reliable, as their is overlap between the casts). However each cast is in many ways unique, albeit subtly. Each of these Castes is defined by the roles they were designed for in the Astral Crusade (see History).
Provider Caste Kiari are the smaller of the two, typically only standing between 116cm and 140cm. Their ears are thinner and notably shorter than their Sentinel class kin, and their hearing is less sharp (albeit far more sharp than the average human). They have the most slender frames of the two Castes, and are less muscled than the Sentinel Caste.
Sentinel Caste Kiari are notably larger and more broad than their Provider kin. They usually stand between 134cm and 153cm feet with broad shoulders for their kind (which are still slim by human standards). Their ears are longer than the smaller cast, stretching quite a distance behind their heads, often over 4cm beyond the back of their skulls. Although still thin, their ears are thicker than other members of their race. Their muscular structure is far more impressive than their kin, and they are quite strong for their size.
As per the designs of their creator Sericil, the Kiari are typically quiet and reserved, but can be quite outspoken if they feel the need. They are contemplative by nature. Despite their quiet and reserved natures they have a strong sense of community, usually opting to live in small family groups within moderately sized communities.
Having been forged by Sericil during the Astral Crusade with the purpose of caring for wounded members of the Legions of the Gods, the Kiari typically have strong inclinations towards forming a duty of care. Most Kiari practice some form of medicine.
The Kiari are typically altruistic, yet how they show this altruism can vary greatly. However their are some commonalities between members of the Castes. The Sentinels, for example, are more inclined to defend the helpless and the hurt as that was the purpose originally given to them by Sericil. However individuals of the Provider Caste are more inclined to take the roles of caregivers and healers.
The Castes typically live as equals in any given population, and take on roles that compliment their separate natures. The Sentinels are usually seen in the role of guards, hunters and in the rare instances where Kiari tribes are drawn into conflict make up the vast majority of soldiers. However their rough lifestyles often cause them to develop illnesses or sustain injuries, making the roles of healer and caretaker important amongst their tribes and clans. These roles are typically filled by Provider Caste Kiari.
Range of Habitation
The Kiari are divided into three main populations, each split into a different geographical region. The original sub-species, the Truebloods, are native to Bevrasten and Qianna. Most of the Trueblood population live in small to medium sized tribes that can be found anywhere in Qianna and south-east Bevrasten. The majority of Bevrasten is populated by the Hill Clans, large family groups that live in the towns and cities of the high clans, the most influential clans of Bevrasten.
Aerust's mountains and caves are populated by the Snowborn Kiari, who live in great stone structures beneath the mountains called Stone Lodges. These lodges host multiple small to medium clans, and are connected to nearby clans and shared assets such as mines and strongholds by tunnels.
The three major cultures of the Kiari number amongst the most ancient surviving cultures of Tor'Saarn, and share common elements that date back to before the creation of the Realms of the gods. Most Family units of the Kiari are built up primarily of members of a single cast, however due to encouragement of cross-caste marriage and a small chance of random caste assignment roughly 30% of a Caste is made up of the families secondry Caste.
The Kiari were the first race made by the gods, and as such were the second sentient race to exist, behind the pre-crusade Astrals (sometimes called proto-humans). They were forged by the goddess, Sericil, not long after she joined in Sar'aans war with the Titan-Minds. They were forged to act as healers and caretakers for the Astral legion, and later performed this role for each god's legion.
As the Astral crusade drew to an end the Kiari began to dwindle in numbers, as they were prime targets for the Titans wrath. This would have an extreme negative effect on the Legions of the gods, as it would deprive them of their most effective healers and leave their wounded largely unguarded.
Due to their near extinction they were the first culture to be introduced to the newly made Realms of the gods, being introduced to the world sometime around 650BFE (Before first Era). Taking the council of the gods Sar'aan and Gessar, Sericil split the remaining Kiari into two populations that were chosen due to their viability as safe-havens for the endangered people. The largest population was settled in the mild region of south Bevrasten, where the temperate weather and lush enviroment would allow them to gain a foothold in the world and more easily rebuild their population.
A modified, hardy populace (that would become the snowborn) was hidden deep in the mountains of Aerust, where the hostile weather and jagged mountain tops would hide them from the eyes of the outside world. The mountains not only make exploration difficult for outsiders, but also protect the Kiari clans living underneath from the harsh winters above.
Skeletal and Muscular Structures
The Kiari's bones are less dense than those of other races, making it easy for them to move quickly and placing less pressure on their muscular system. The structure of these bones makes them mildly flexible, allowing the Kiari to land from great heights without suffering considerable harm.
The Muscles within the Kiari's legs have a natural elasticity and are designed to store excess kinetic energy, allowing them to release a large amount of stored energy (after enough energy has been built up) in the form of a great vertical or horizontal leap, or release the energy slowly over time to increase the Kiari's stride.
The Kiari are omnivorous, however adult Provider Caste Kiari can go without any meat or animal byproducts such as milk or eggs. Sentinel Caste require a strict omnivorous diet throughout their lives as their muscular structure is difficult to maintain and requires protein not only from numerous sources, but in multiple separate forms.
The caste of a newborn Kiari is determined largely by their parents, with each parent having a 40% chance of the offspring being of their cast (totaling 80% for both parents), while their is a 20% chance that the Caste will be randomized.
ARRIVAL IN TOR'SAARN
650 Before first Age (BFA)
Sericil, Lateeri, Tioram
Aerust, Bevrasten, Qianna