[Ebunorun] Iwinrin, "Ghost-People," the "elves" of Ebunorun

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[Ebunorun] Iwinrin, "Ghost-People," the "elves" of Ebunorun

Post by JamesMishler »

Requirements: DEX 9+, CHA 12+
XP Cost: 15% levels 1 to 5, 25% levels 6 to 10, 50% level 10+

Iwinrin (“ghost people”) are the spirits of the dead made flesh. Humans have three parts to their non-physical body: the psyche, spirit, and soul. At death, the soul joins with the Ancestors or even the Gods if worthy; if unworthy, the soul is condemned, usually eaten by a foul demon. The psyche usually fades after time; this is the part of the soul necromancers speak with when they speak with dead, and the spark that is used to animate undead (skeletons and the walking dead).

The spirit, on the other hand, wanders the mortal world incorporeally and (usually) invisibly, usually gravitating over time to the wild lands where only beasts can be found, often the forest or caverns, though sometimes to swamps, savannah, or deserts. There the spirit joins roiling masses of other spirits. The spirit eventually fades into and joins the land itself, or inhabits a singular part of the land – a tree, boulder, hill, etc.

Most rarely, if it was a "strong" soul, it remains, and eventually incarnates a physical body of shimmering, glittering ivory white, with white eyes, and silver-white hair. Iwinrin sometimes remember their past life, but these memories are diaphanous and dream-like. Being neither truly dead or alive, and knowing only the moment, Iwinrin become consumed with revelry and merriment, though they also grow to care for and tend to the wild lands they inhabit. For some, protection of their land, especially against mortal encroachment, becomes their only concern.

Sometimes they are helpful to flesh-and-blood mortals, other times inimical. Iwinrin personality tends to reflect the lands they inhabit. Forest Iwinrin tend to be friendlier and more open with mortals, while cavern Iwinrin are disposed to be inimical and secretive; swamp Iwinrin tend to be sneaky and mysterious, while desert Iwinrin are often abrasive and treacherous. All Iwinrin have some command of magic essential to the environment of their origin.

Sometimes Iwinrin go into mortal lands for adventure, or to seek out the mortal family and friends they once knew. Those who do so learn a simple enchantment that enables them to incarnate in a mortal form, in the form of whichever people they first decide to settle amongst. This enchantment is not powerful enough to hide their true nature whenever they call upon any sort of magic; when they do so, their skin turns glittery white, their hair and eyes shimmer silvery-white, and they are surrounded by a nimbus of glowing light that sheds light like a candle (lasts during the casting of the spell, plus one round per spell level).

Iwinrin sometimes marry, and can even have children; these "ghost-children" have white hair and eyes, and are known for being capable of wielding powerful magic.

• Iwinrin have a 3 in 6 chance of detecting hidden objects and doors and a 2 in 6 chance of detecting secret objects and doors when actively searching.
• If alone and not in armor, and/or in a party made completely of appropriately clad Iwinrin, Oborin, Ehorin, and/or rangers, an Iwinrin surprises his opponents on a roll of 1-4 on a d6.
• Iwinrin are unaffected by ghoul paralysis, and are immune to all kinds of fear caused by undead.
• Iwinrin have a 90% resistance to sleep and charm spells.
• Once wholly of incorporeal spirit form, incarnated Iwinrin are only able to attain a semi-material form. Iwinrin can assume gaseous form once per day per (2/day at 4th to 6th level, 3/day at 7th-9th, etc.). The Iwinrin can maintain this form up to 1d6 turns plus one turn per level; she can end the effect at will. An Iwinrin in gaseous form cannot enter an area or touch a being or object protected by a protection from evil spell. This ability operates otherwise exactly as per the gaseous form potion.
• Iwinrin must take the druid, illusionist, or magic-user class, and may multi-class with the fighter and/or thief class if they so choose, and they may multi-class as druid/illusionists or druid/magic-users. Iwinrin cannot be clerics, as they have no soul, they are merely incarnated spirits.
• Iwinrin illusionists and magic-users do not have spell books. All spells they learn are retained in their memory, but only those that are memorized may be cast; recalling a spell to memorize it requires the same time as reading a spell from a spell book to memorize it. Iwinrin illusionists and magic-users begin play knowing twelve 1st level spells; these are chosen by the Labyrinth Lord from among spells related to their place of origin (forest, cave, swamp, desert, etc.), and then others are randomly determined.
• Iwinrin cannot be raised from the dead or resurrected; only a wish spell can return an Iwinrin back to life.
• Iwinrin thieves receive the following modifiers to thief abilities: Pick Locks -5%, Pick Pockets +5%, Move Silently +10%, Hide in Shadows +10%, Hear Noise +1.
• An Iwinrin character begins play knowing Obakoja (the common tongue), their original human language, and one other human language, that of the people among whom they first incarnate a mortal form (they do not gain another language if they incarnate among their own original people). Iwinrin may speak with the recently dead (see below) once per corpse. They may choose from languages local to either their native area and/or their adopted area if they possess bonus languages.

Iwinrin: Glittering ivory white skin, silver-white hair, glowing white eyes without iris or pupil, 5'8", 0# (150# mortal form), average build, immortal, typically Neutral. When in their natural form, Iwinrin may cause their skin, hair, and eyes to glow with the silvery light of a candle (5’ radius) at will; when in their mortal incarnation, this occurs automatically whenever they cast a spell, and lasts for one round per level of the spell thereafter.

Iwinrin are not a natural, mortal race; they arise from among the spirits of the dead who are called to the wild places of the world after the death of their mortal body. There, over time, the strongest such spirits take on an incarnate physical form. This form has the same appearance as they possessed in their mortal life, but without blemish, scar, or handicap. Their body appears to be made of glittering white ivory; their hair, silvery-white, rustled by a wind invisible to mortals; and their eyes, solid glowing white, devoid of iris or pupil.

In this form, Iwinrin congregate where the spirits of the dead remain, and when they feel the need to rest, return to that incorporeal state, to drift with the other spirits in the sleep of the dead. When they again take on the form of spirit-flesh, they feel the needs of mortal-flesh, and go through all the motions. They eat, and enjoy the taste of the food, but have no need for the nutrition; they run and gambol and jump and dance, but never tire; and they engage in erotic play with one another as the whim takes them, though never has another spirit been born of spirit-flesh only.

And so the Iwinrin, in their small bands and clans, gather and make merry, and enjoy a kind of paradisiacal heaven-on-earth, enjoying all the pleasures of mortals with none of the costs, pains, or dangers. As they age they grow in power, with ever greater magical ability, for it is through the native magical energy of the world that they formed their spirit-body, and through time, they gather ever more such energy to themselves. The abilities this power grants them are much the same as those of the druids, illusionists, and magic-users of the mortal world.

Due to their power, mortals sometimes seek out the Iwinrin for help, for good and for evil. This is dangerous, for the one thing the Iwinrin care for is the pristine nature of their home, for were it to be polluted by the presence of mortals and their buildings and clutter, the native magic of the wild would fade, as then too would the Iwinrin. And so Iwinrin are often inimical to mortals, and use all their powers to keep them out of their wild haunts.

However, if the mortal comes bearing gifts, of jewelry or of knowledge, Iwinrin are much more likely to hear them out. And then an exchange is made, and the Iwinrin does some thing for the mortal, or teaches the mortal some magical power, in return for further wisdom, or for lovely jewelry or perhaps other objects of art, for Iwinrin love to wear jewelry and display lovely things. And while the Iwinrin wear the jewelry or hide it when they rest among the dead, the objects they collect remain on display in the wild, a warning to any who enter the area that it is home to Iwinrin, and must be left with all due haste…

From time to time, an Iwinrin becomes enamored of the mortal world, through this limited contact, or through burgeoning memories of their past mortal life. And so, they learn an incantation to take on mortal form. Usually it is the form of the local mortals (which may be far and distant from the land where they died), as it is usually these mortals, and specifically a certain mortal, who has captured the Iwinrin’s interest. And thus, the mortally incarnated Iwinrin takes on a mortal life (though he remains immortal), and settles down with her new mortal husband, or he with his new mortal wife.

Other Iwinrin take on a mortal form to wander the mortal world and experience it again from a mortal perspective. These wanderers seek out adventure, danger, knowledge, or some other goal. Sometimes they seek out their old mortal families, only to return home to find that their beloved has long since died, leaving many great-grandchildren, and the few years they thought they spent as a wandering spirit were long decades or even centuries! Some Iwinrin are driven mad by the experience; others embrace it and seek to ensure the continued success of their descendants.

An Iwinrin with a mortal body can reproduce naturally with a mortal. The resultant child, a “ghost-child” or Omo-Iwin, is usually strong in the ways of magic, has a +2 bonus to save against ghoul paralysis, a 30% resistance to sleep and charm spells, has the thieving bonuses of an Iwinrin, and possesses the gaseous form and speak with the recently dead abilities (they are otherwise normal humans). Omo-Iwin have shiny silvery-white hair and silvery-white irises; when they cast a spell their hair, eyes, and skin glows a shimmery white (during the casting of the spell, only).

Speak with the Recently Dead: This ability enables the Iwinrin or Omo-Iwin to speak with a recently dead being by speaking directly to the body’s psyche, which remains after the departure of the spirit and soul. This must be done within one hour after death per level of the Iwinrin or Omo-Iwin, as any later than that and the psyche will be accessible only by more powerful magic.

The Iwinrin or Omo-Iwin must take 10 minutes to contact the psyche; she must sit at the head of the body (which must be mostly intact; if the head is mostly destroyed, the chance of success is only the percent that the head remains intact). After this, the body makes a saving throw versus spells; if it fails, the Iwinrin or Omo-Iwin may ask it a number of questions equal to her level, each answer of which can take no more than one minute. The psyche can only reveal what it knew it life, it does not have any further knowledge.

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