Races of Avendar, Chapter IX: The Ch’taren
An excerpt from the Races of Avendar, an in-game text found in the school of heroes, this chapter covers the ch’taren.
Ch'taren: Section 1 The ch'taren race is the newest to join Avendar's racial tapestry, appearing at the climax of the War of Night. Early ch'taren described themselves as 'refugees', but also spoke of their lives on their home plane. It was there that they were born of the twin gods, Rystaia and Vaialos, and they were imbued with the powers of Spirit. The precise location and character of the ch'taren home plane is disputed, as the concepts which characterize it cannot be expressed in current mortal language. What is known of it is that it was more fully attuned to the pure force of life and the spirit realm. The legendary living metal, ch'lonin, is said to have been forged there. Rystaia encouraged passion, joy, and zeal in the hearts of the ch'taren, while Her twin, Vaialos, encouraged the race's monumental intelligence and affinity for magic. However, a dark shadow would be cast across this perfect world in the form of Tzet-Askhari's whose presence would devastate their world, and change the face of Avendar forever. Ch'taren: Section 2 The Dragon devoured many of the outer planes which were unprotected by the Avendarian Compact, and one of them was the home of the ch'taren and their twin gods. Their hope of survival was virtually non-existent when faced with the terrible might of the Overgod, and it seemed only a matter of time until the Dragon's victory. Rystaia and Her high priest, Shathalith, uncovered the plans of the shuddeni to create a great nexus to the void. While they prepared for the passage of the ch'taren to the Prime, Vaialos valiantly faced Tzet-Askhari. His power was nothing compared to the dread might of the Dragon, and He was devoured, along with the ch'taren home world. However, with the gateway open, the ch'taren poured through the portal, arriving suddenly in wartorn Avendar. This sudden reversal of fortune put the near-victorious shuddeni on the defensive, and would be remembered for all time as the Day of Two Dawns. Quickly, the tide of the War of Night turned in favor of the surface races, and the shuddeni were driven into the earth. Ch'taren: Section 3 The Republic of Earendam granted a number of parcels of land to the ch'taren in the wake of the War. These three locations became known as the ch'taren havens. To the far north, was Avayn, the haven of Ice. To the south, was Ad'masteisa, haven of Wind. And on the isle of Alensha, was Jh'ten, the haven of Waves. As the human Republic fractured, the shuddeni made one last desperate move against their ch'taren foes. Mobilized by the rising god, Arkhural, the remnants of the shuddeni war machine struck at Ad'masteisa, and destroyed it. The great hero of the War of Night, Chalane Tyra, died a martyr in defense of the haven of Wind. After the atrocity, the famed ch'taren heroine, Calaera, led her vengeful warband in pursuit of the shuddeni butchers. The warband offered no mercy, and swiftly put the shuddeni to the sword. This victory only exposed the frailty of the havens thus, in its wake, Calaera saw to the construction of Sy'ceera, which would ward off future attacks. Ch'taren: Section 4 In the lead up to the modern era, the ch'taren integrated themselves into the societies of the Prime. Their unusual looks and immense beauty made them popular, and this was only cemented by their reputation for goodliness, valor, and zeal. Yet, ch'taren could never fully become a part of these other societies, and mostly focused upon their havens. With the rise of the shuddeni Scourge, and a new blindness-inducing disease known as the Eyeblight, the ch'taren have sealed off their two remaining havens. As the Scourge ravaged many strongholds of Spirit magic and the city-states of the Prime, the ch'taren again found themselves mobilized to action. Over a number of generations, the last of the Scourge's strongholds were routed. The ch'taren goddesses, Rystaia and Calaera, supported those who battled the shuddeni, which has only deepened the anger between the two races. However, once again, the ch'taren are respected throughout the world as liberators and combatants of the highest order. Ch'taren: Section 5 Ch'taren appear as translucent, golden-skinned humanoids. Their most common hair color is silver, and their eyes are often a vivid and unearthly shade. They are not fully present upon the Prime, making their physical sensations, including injury, less pronounced. As a people, they are a generally carefree lot, untroubled by most affairs. With the collapse of their original culture, the ch'taren often adapt with relative ease to the governments or cultures of those around them. Ch'taren, as a general rule, do not lead wholly settled lives, taking up an adventurous mindset for at least some portion of their youth. They excel at magic, but often struggle when the rigor of discipline becomes too great.