Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)

★ RACE LORE: DIRE EDITION

Offline Onii Feb 1 2020, 4:01 PM
#1
  • Age: 24
  • Gender: Female
  • Race: Human
  • Rank: The Queenbae
  • Total Posts: 21
  • Played by: Onii
80 Mana · ?

RACE LORE: DIRE ENTRY



NOTE: THESE LORE PAGES ARE IN NO WAY MANDATORY TO FOLLOW. THESE ENTRIES ARE INTENDED AS SUPPLEMENTAL CONTENT FOR IMMERSION AND TO STOKE IDEAS. THERE ARE NO PENALTIES FOR CREATING OUTSIDE OF THE "NORMS" DEPICTED IN THESE ENTRIES.





I. SUMMARY



Widely known for their likeness to the Old Gods, the Wolves of Gilead are thought to have originated not long after the Old Gods returned their life force back to the earth. By the laws of conservation, the Dire are widely believed to be descendants-via-reincarnation by this process of recycled energy, an element proven synonymous to Magic. Thanks to The Conversion experiments, Dire have been given the ability to shift between their true forms and a Human figure completely at will. Some may find it easier than others, however, whether physically or morally speaking.




II. INFRASTRUCTURE



Typically Dire-exclusive nations and societies; female and male sex has no bearing on roles.
Diverse in lifestyles: often either Naturalistic, Pacifistic, or even Sympathizing.
Exceptionally resourceful, resilient pockets of smaller societies with innovative guerrilla tactics.




I. INTERNAL CONFLICT: BELIEF SPECTRUM



Because of The Conversions, which pitted them directly in the midst of Humans, previously "feral" Dire have not only had physical Human likeness blended into them, but they have also been exposed to Human culture and advancements for varied amounts of time. Because of this, the lifestyles of Dire sit on a spectrum with often-great amounts of internal conflict over where individuals sit on said spectrum. The three largest inner conflicts between Dire and the way they navigate this world at war are Naturalistic, Pacifistic, and Sympathizing. Many sit along this spectrum closer to one or two general belief systems.

NATURALISTIC: Dire of this school of thought are considered the most reverted to their Demigod roots, having rebuked all unnatural means and returned to their exclusive societies without any external influence. They often live in packs and behave very closely to canine culture, and are vehement aggressors against both Humans and Eximius when encountered. They are typically revered and feared not for what they can do, but for what they will do without a second thought. If they have political agenda they are often extremist in nature, and fight to keep their ground or expand as animals are meant to do. They might live in packs or they might live equally well in loner situations. Naturalistic Dire are Wolven Demigods in every sense of the word, and are not often pacified (or easily approachable) by non-Dire. Pacifistic Dire tend to look down upon the gristly, counterproductive fire fueling of Naturalistic Dire, and Sympathizing Dire often fear or consider them to be a threat.

PACIFISTIC: Dire of this school of thought are considered to be the middle ground or seen as kind deities. While they often adhere to their natural roots in order to reclaim their true selves, they do so without entirely feral demeanor and are therefore able to move about without consistent internal dispute about whether it's right or wrong to move through non-Dire cities. Their agendas are often to be left alone and nothing else, and are wary of outside influence but otherwise do not strike unless threatened. They may be considered weak by many, but this is a common and dangerous misconception. Pacifistic ideals are very unapologetic about what they are, and are often not aggressive simply because they know what they are capable of; there is little to prove or fight for. They might also focus on finding ways to recover Gilead from the abuse of Magic, or adhere closely to the blessing of the Old Gods. Naturalistic Dire may consider Pacifistic Dire "to have their heads in the sand" by letting wrongs slide, and Sympathizing Dire often respect Pacifistic Dire while also feeling wary of and misunderstood by them.

SYMPATHIZING: Dire of this school of thought are considered the farthest opposite of Naturalistic Dire. These are Dire who, by endless possible reasons, not only empathize with Humans but are interested in or have a positive view on them or their societies in a way that perhaps leaves them preferring or being more comfortable in the Human form. These Dire often live in or around Human nations, and are easily able to navigate or associate with Human politics and culture. They may even be raised in Human societies, partake in Human politics or have families with Humans. Sympathizers are easily integrated into many Human societies without particular prejudice, or they may completely hide their true identities by avoiding to shift in the eyes of those around them in order to dwell among lesser accepting societies as well. Some Dire may be pulled into a Sympathizer lifestyle because of their Human mates despite how they may not be full Sympathizers; this would be because a Human society is safer for their partner, and out of unconditional love the Dire is willing to join the fold. Pacifistic Dire often consider Sympathizing Dire to be misguided, and Naturalistic Dire may despise them and consider them to be Human Pets and/or pests.

Eximius are generally viewed as anything ranging from monsters, threats, or unpredictable machines that foster an undeniable instinct to kill Dire. There have naturally been some to go against the grain with a seemingly-lethal attraction to Eximius, but at the cost of many friends around them. Whether this is a spiteful or amicable loss, it is understandable that Dire privy to this pairing are concerned for their own survival and therefore may be unwilling to risk the threat. There are of course cultures and belief systems scattered around Gilead that foster Dire-to-Eximius relations and even functional societies between all THREE races. There's always hope.



II. INTERNAL CONFLICT: SHIFTING & PASSING



As aforementioned, even Shifting may have implications for Dire. Some cultures among their race may be hard line against it, others may not prefer it unless necessary, and others may comfortably love their Human skin or even feel more natural in it than their true wolven form. It is certainly NOT a clearly defined element to their society; some may prefer Human form for certain things and Wolven form for others. For instance, their true form may be preferred for hunting, mating and other baser natures where it is far more comfortable to use their bodies, while they largely spend time in Human form to get around. They may prefer to ride horses or eat with dishes, live in houses or childbear in a more Human form. What one's forms mean is typically very individual to the Dire, with elements of whatever culture they're in seeping in and nurturing their perception of what is "okay" and what is not.

Ultimately, in a Humancentric world as Gilead currently is, you can imagine that survival ALSO plays a part in how Dire view the importance of their Human form. Traveling for long distances away from their home territories may not be safe to do in their true forms. While not ALL Human societies and cultures currently condemn Dire or take an atheistic approach to them, the largest political influences, Svalbard in particular, have historically led to a dangerous component of being a Dire in Gilead. Therefore, "Passing" is a very important concept that many Dire keep in mind. Traveling to Human nations may require Passing, as well as sudden encounters with unknown non-Dire in the wild until they prove to be positive forces. Unfortunately, this is only helpful when it comes to Humans: animals, other Dire and Eximius with certain abilities can detect a Dire even if they're Passing.



III. INTERNAL CONFLICT: MATING & GROWTH



The Conversions have led to Dire sharing enough genetic similarity to Humans and therefore Eximius, which allows them to effectively procreate with either race. Dire-and-Human pairings are far more prolific than Dire-and-Eximius because of the decreased fertility of Eximius, however. While some Dire may not consider Human partners to be ideal or safe because of how closely this potentially puts them alongside negative or deadly Human influences, it is considered far safer than Dire-and-Eximius pairings for obvious reason.

For female Dire, the shape of their young is dependent on the form of the mother. Because they most commonly have the ability to shift passed down to them, offspring will naturally shift between forms alongside the mother. This phenomenon is cued by the hormonal changes of the mother that passes into her uterine environment and signals a similar change in the fetus' form. This process for the fetuses, however, is naturally FAR slower than it is for grown Dire, so it is recommended for pregnant Dire to refrain from shifting too often to minimize discomfort or bad timing that could result in giving birth to Dire who are not in the right form for her body. Consistent shifting of the mother puts strain on the fetus as well, likely due to the constant chemical changes in its environment; as a result, the chance for spontaneous abortion increases. Because of all these reasons, pregnant Dire who are appropriately concerned about this face tougher choices about their forms, where they are safest living out their pregnancies and the like. Cautious Dire often spend the earliest period of pregnancy securing a safe situation in order to minimize the chance of needing to shift in later pregnancy; the miscarriage rate has been shown to skyrocket in Dire who shift too often in heavy pregnancy.

Shifting for young Dire is often taxing and difficult with a learning curve that is steeper depending on the world they've been born into. Careful parents often choose secure areas that will allow their offspring to safely grow in their birth forms until they can master shifting just enough. Until they are able to, it is clear that leaving this sanctuary can be risky if the offspring cannot properly Pass like their parents can. Similar to fledglings, Dire offspring must learn to flex this muscle with coaching of the parents as well as visual learning. It has been seen that Dire in large groups or with consistent parental influence are able to shift far earlier than orphaned Dire, or Dire who have inconsistent parenting due to a single parent who is therefore doing the work of two, by a neglectful parent, or so forth. Dire also seem to learn both forms faster in Human-and-Dire pairings. It should be noted that because of this, some Dire use this biological side effect to discredit the idea of extreme beliefs on either side; be it pro-Dire or pro-Human ideals. The idea is that admonishing Wolven form or admonishing Human form for ANY reason, at some point, may mean death for one's children.
A fair point to make.



III. THE CONVERSIONS: APPEARANCE I



With the painstaking work the Humans have put into these experiments in order to give the Dire a fighting chance against The Blackening crisis, the historic plague of the earth that left them sick or worse, present-day Dire have two forms they can switch between at will. It carries now through blood, and offspring are born in whichever form they were conceived in. Just like Human babies must learn to use their hands, Dire newborns must learn to shift out of their birth form. Often a tasking process because it cannot be taught, Dire may spend the first couple of years cemented in their birth form; the eventual grasp of this innate skill varies with the individual's development. Because of their blended likeness with Humans, Dire can procreate with humans and, by proxy, Eximius as well.

WOLF: Dire wolven forms are incredibly diverse in size, shape, skeletal structure and, because of the nature of the experiments, sometimes limbs. Wings, horns, talons and other extra traits are uncommon but do occur and are often passed down by lineages.

HUMAN: Dire humanoid forms are far less diverse by comparison, but equal to that of Human diversity. Humanoid forms also genetically follow lineages as is natural, but with somewhat looser restraints as there are more elements at work than Human genetics. Human forms can have similar phenotype to a Dire's wolven form such as red Human hair for a red-coated Dire, but it is not a consistent link; the forms don't always have to be linked in that way.



IV. OLD MAGIC



It is widely believed that the Demigods of Gil'ead have inherited Magic of the Old Gods themselves, termed Old Magic, and exclusively keep it in their blood. Old Magic are powerful, otherworldly powers that currently have not been remotely imitated even by the Humans. These Magics are said to have been used to run the world and beyond, turning the sun and seasons both.

Even still despite its gift, many Dire take decades of fierce training to tap into merely one power and even then it isn't guaranteed. A Dire who has any success, however, is held on a superior rung. A true demigod, they say, should be fully capable of taking the role of their now-gone ancestors.

Old Magic users tend to be very heavily protected or hidden whether by their societies or by their own wisdom. These abilities make them targets for capture from all races, even their own, where they would be forced to perform what they know until they pass.