Anurans are frogfolk that live in the western swamps of Udai, in the lands claimed by the Black Dragon Lord
Reoma the Wretched.
Anuran society is centered around a Commune, where there is no necessary leader.
The Anurans will elect a representative every year to deal with the other nations, but they have no power to actually change the law. Instead, they will at most suggest changes which then can be voted on by the people.
The people have the power. All decisions in the Anuran Commune are made by the people, with a vote by all citizens of legal age. However, due to the spread out nature of the Anuran people, the way word of mouth travels in the tight-knit community, and the impossibility to validate every single vote, these are easily swayed.
Often things end with things being in favor of one of the more popular political factions. There are many of these, and the parties come and go.
The one of major note are the Wretched Anurans, who worship the Dragon Lord
Reoma the Wretched and want to revolve society around him. The rest of Anuran society often denounces them, but they can do little else to stop their influence.
b'Os by Jarhed
There are few known settlements of the Anurans in terms of named clusters, as they simply live across the Western Udaian Swamps. Their communities are hidden everywhere around the swamps, and one is likely to find them if traveling in the area.
Mythscar Island is home to Reoma the Wretched. The only Anurans who live here are Wretched Anurans, the cult dedicated to him, and they only live her when they can provide a sacrifice that allows them access to the island.
There are few records of Anuran Society before the Lizardfolk
arrived in Udai. It is said that long ago, the Wretched Cult were at the center of Anuran life, and that all Anurans worshipped the Black Dragon Lord Reoma.
Some believe the City that now stands as the Lizardfolk capital of Grandstone
was built by the Anurans, but it does not match Anuran architectural styles, nor is there any record that the Anurans had any hand in its construction.
The Communal Life Begins
The first true records begin with the Commune, as an Anuran named b'Os rallied the Anurans as a unit to fight back the Orcs. It is said that he did not wish to lead them, but he did so for the sake of taking on their enemies.
Once the Orcs were pushed back past the mountains, b'Os suggested a new idea, where the people would vote on what should be done, rather than leaving it to a Dragon to decide their fate.
b'Os created the position of a leader being an elected position with no power to represent the position he had against the Orcs.
b'Os mainly wanted the Anuran people to support each other. He knew this system could lead to corruption.
"Put the power in the hands of the people. There should be no one who decides what happens to a person other than themselves, and the well being of the individual will then strengthen the community.."
Still, he saw it as the best way to ensure prosperity for the most people. In the best case scenario, the people would support each other, and a utopia would be made around the well-being of the people.
The worst case scenario, of course, is always the most likely. In a society that prioritizes the self, selfish people thrive while the selfless are left to suffer. In many ways, it mirrors the exact kind of society b'Os wished to avoid.
g'Neen by Jarhed
A man named g'Neen would eventually rise up to take that leadership position.
g'Neen had convinced many people in his time that it would be in their best interests if they should think less of the community and more for themselves. He rose on a platform of selfishness, and it worked. For it is the base desire to help oneself over others.
In his position of power, g'Neen ousted Reoma from having any major influence in Anuran society beyond the now small Wretched Anuran Cult.
He incited a purge of the Wretched Anurans, and then used his annihilation of them as a way to try and convince the people he was a sort of savior. He used poison made on his own skin to kill his political enemies, calling them enemies of the people. And when there was an enemy to rally around, the people were happy to rally behind a powerful figure like g'Neen.
g'Neen's platform was made to make the individual feel more empowered through the man who was living out the ideal of the self as the center of everything. By making g'Neen the supreme leader, the individual felt empowered.
Arrival of the Lizardfolk
However, it would not be long before a savior came in the form of a scaley group of individuals from afar. The Lizardfolk arrived in Udai, and when g'Neen tried to make them out to be evil, the Lizardfolk quickly saw the Anurans as a threat and took their army out to take care of them.
Beshrok by Jarhed
Led by Beshrok, the army took out g'Neen and freed the Anurans from the tyrannical rule. The idea of self prioritization stuck, and many say that it still festers in ways that do not promote the well being of the community and are as toxic as Anuran skin.
The Anurans saw the Lizardfolk that freed them, initially, as an ideal. Beshrok did not seem much of a leader, so to the Anurans, the Lizardfolk were a sign that working together was best. The way b'Os intended.
Surprisingly, there was one major group that did stick with g'Neen's views on the Lizardfolk. This group was not any of his supporters, but instead the remainder of the Wretched Anuran Cult. They saw his tactics and realized they were perfect to further their goals and continue worship of their Dragon Lord.
The Wretched Anurans, then, began to sacrifice Lizardfolk to Reoma. They saw they could use the Lizardfolk to their advantage, as they saw the Lizardfolk upsetting Reoma by intruding on his island without a sacrifice. And so, the Wretched Anurans began to turn the Lizardfolk people into a sacrifice.
They trained assassins to sneak in and take the Lizardfolk. For a while, this was still considered taboo. After all, sacrifice was not morally correct.
Sacrifice is Morally Correct
That was until the Wretched Anurans managed to weasel their way into leadership, where they proposed making sacrifice of the Lizardfolk legal. The leader, b'Leetin, convinced everyone that as long as they sacrificed Lizardfolk, then the Anurans would be kept safe and out of Reoma's wrath.
He was able to either convince the majority or sway the votes enough that this did stick, and ever since, sacrifice of the Lizardfolk has been considered the moral high ground. Better for a few Lizardfolk to die than a large amount of Anurans, after all.
Growth of the Commune
The Anuran Commune has, since, grown and evolved more overtime. But the general principles have stayed intact. Individualism, the well-being of the community, and Lizardfolk Sacrifice are the three major tenets of the Anurans.
Getoh by Jarhed
The Anuran people live in the swamps of Udai, which are lands claimed by the Black Dragon Lord
Reoma the Wretched. To survive there, they present him tribute in the form of ritual sacrifices.
Initially, these sacrifices were difficult to obtain, as their only source of sacrifices were the Orcs
or themselves, and they did not wish to sacrifice themselves, as the Anurans wished to show their value to Reoma as more than sacrifices.
Later, the Lizardfolk
arrived, and have been used ever since as the sacrifices. Anurans train assassins to sneak into places like Grandstone
, steal Lizardfolk without being seen, and bring them to Reoma for a sacrifice.
There are two schools of Anuran Art: Anuran Realism and Anuran Noncomformism.
Anuran Art is said to normally follow the principle of Anuran Realism. This means it shows the Anuran Commune in very idealized, extremely polticized ways that paint the government in a good light. It is often lacking complex meaning beyond the political message, unless an Anuran artist can manage to sneak in more nuance under the nose of the general populace.
This sort of art was endorsed by g'Neen during his reign as a way to center the pop culture of the Anurans around contributing more to society and keeping it the way it was. If the government or community were featured in an Anuran Realist piece, it had to be favorably.
This stuck after g'Neen's death, even when most other things he did were thrown out.
Anuran Realism is said to have a positive impact on those who experience it, as it portrays both the present and future in the best ways it can. It is propaganda, but in a way that at least makes people feel good about the state of things
Anuran Nonconformism is a broad term for anything that does not follow Anuran Realism that is made by the Anuran people. This art can never be sold in the Anuran Commune, but it can be made. The most common form of Anuran Noncomformist Art is in the abstract, though others include things like Anurans writing plays in the style of Lizardfolk playwright Getoh
This art is often practiced by runaways who live away from the Commune, as they finally have more artistic freedom. However, Anuran Realist Artists dislike hearing they have no freedom. They say, instead, they simply have a box which they must work around. Art requires limits, and they have strict ones to follow.