Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Children of Khala

"Sheeter buri ashchhe dheye"
- Bangla saying for "The winter old woman is coming fast."

A number of posts back, I wrote about the Star Wars minis I was using in my DnD games and what they were standing in for.  I also commented on how I had no idea what to do with my Clone Trooper/Stormtrooper minis.  After much brainstorming and more world building, I finally have a new culture/race that these minis will provide.

Far north, at the edge of the world on a foreign continent (not Aradove), a group of reclusive guardians dwell among the Frostbyte Mountains.  Those traveling the mountain paths claim to see figures enshrined in white, fading into the snowy winds as soon as they appear.  They are covered from head to toe, some wearing armor, others donning cloth robes.  In the end, all are mysterious, for they speak little and never show their faces.  Their dwellings are unknown, and who they are, none can say.  The villagers who live at the foot of the mountains have a name for them: The Children of Khala.

Amongst the Frostbyte peaks, the Children of Khala dwell.

Scholars know that Khala was once the goddess of Winter.  In her struggle for control, she began a war that drew the gods out of the world and placed it in the hands of the Primal Spirits.  This war was known as the War of Winter, and many heroes rose and fell throughout its length. In the end, only one true fact of the war is known: Khala lost.  Whether she is dead or something else entirely, none can say, and many have sought to reach the summit of Vetr, the highest peak amongst the Frostbyte.  Vetr is so tall, that if one stands at the foot of it and looks up, the peak itself becomes lost in the clouds.

And yet, while many do not know much about the Children of Khala, they continue to exist and thrive in their hostile environment.  At various points and elevations amongst the Frostbyte are camps that are utilized by them.  Some adventurers have told tales of leaving the Elemental Chaos, only to arrive back in the world lost in the Diamond Blades, soon to be rescued by the Children and sent on their way. 

An ex-Child of Khala.  I want to play this character at some point.  His armor is not bonded with ice anymore.  Why has he returned to the Frostbytes? 
 Followers of the Raven Queen hold the Children in hostility, for they feel that they are choosing to hold their allegiance to the wrong goddess.  The Raven Queen is now the mistress of Winter, not Khala.  However, the Children have never spoken that they do follow Khala, or any god in particular.  That is something that was brought on in the stories told by the people below.

Other scholars and sages have speculated that the peak of Vetr holds some unspeakable horror, something that the Children are protecting the world from.  Wizards in the Elemental Chaos whisper of a great elemental power atop the mountain, while priestesses of the Raven Queen maintain that something is there that will bring about their goddess' destruction.  What that could be, none will say, and even among the Children, many do not know.  Only those that live at the top of the mountain, amongst the most terrifying conditions know, and they do not share their secrets.

The Frostbytes are also home to many fearsome predators, from yetis, frost giants, and remorhazzes.  Rumors of white and cobalt dragons making their lairs among the many peaks is also known.  The Children of Khala are aware of the dangers and are able to allow themselves to survive.  The most experienced and formidable warriors patrol farther along the mountain paths.  The novices scout amongst the lower elevations, while all the rest patrol the middle heights.

An ex-Child of Khala leads his companions into the dangerous lairs of the Frostbyte Mountains.

The armor worn by the Children of Khala protects the entire body from the frigid temperatures the mountains have.  They take snow and ice and magically meld it with their armor, giving them camouflage and stealth in the peaks.  Because their armor has the properties of snow and ice, it is said to better resist such conditions as well.  Some wear cloth robes, with ice and snow blended with it.  Needless to say, whatever the Children need, they use the ice to their advantage.  Those that seek to endure cold climates have been known to travel to the Children and attempt to trader or barter for a suit of their ice armor.

Even without their armor, the Children of Khala are formidable.

Their weaponry is basic, though all are known to use alchemical items, sometimes creating devices that can fire them from a distance.  There are also alchemical items that allow them to hover for a short amount of time.  They use those items to cross deep gorges and trenches that can form in the Frostbytes.  Legends speak of warriors who wield blades made entirely out of diamonds.  These blades can be found in the peak known appropriately as the Diamond Blades.

A group of Children deal with a white dragon in its lair.  Note the two warriors who hover over the chasms with their alchemical gears.

1 comment:

  1. That was good, you went deep into the creative zone and developed a nice back story for these guys. Those remorhazzes remind me of house centipedes. Nasty little things, every time I go downstairs to get a glass of water at night there is some zillion legged mutherf_____ scurrying about, begging to be squished by a slipper. The hierarchy of where they operate, experienced up top, less experienced down low was a nice touch, as well as some of the mysteriousness you left with them (i.e. not fully disclosing their religious beliefs, utilizing the fact that people of the world don't know much about them).
    I'm interested to see what you're going to do with the ex-child of Khala...