Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Some things about Orcs

The Orcs of the great oceans of Atmos:
  • are a seafaring race, they ply the seas in great generation ships, touching land less than once a year.
  • have skin like seals (although green), it is slightly oily to the touch and covered in a fine layer of hair.
  • do not experience curglaff (the shock felt on plunging into cold water).
  • smell of brine and fermented fish.
  • diet consists mostly of fish and seaweed, although orcish fish sauce is highly prized in Nocte.
  • most never set foot on land and only a tiny percentage venture farther than a few miles from the sea.
  • will always have upon their person a small phial of salt water.
  • give birth to live young. A mother can control the length of the pregnancy from four to eleven months. A four month orc baby is very immature but an eleven month old will be crawling within a week or two.
  • dissolve quickly in their own acids juices upon death, leaving behind a lot less bones than expected and a small brownish pearl that, when ground, forms a heady intoxicant.
  • have personal gods. Each family has a god that protects them, must be sacrificed to etc. Some of the gods have become popular since the families came to the city and are worshiped by thousands. Public shrines are not unusual, even if no one outside the family worships the god, they still want everyone to know about them.
  • never anthropomorphize things, they would never say the "the ocean is a cruel mistress" or even "that cloud looks like your mother".
  • have no ocean, land or animal gods as the orcs believe themselves to have souls and no one else. Animals are free to be slaughtered and fish to be caught. The ocean is not personified either. It is just the world, random, capricious, sometimes calm, sometimes angry (although an orc would never ascribe orcish emotions to the ocean, they would use kalmeren and bous respectively).
  • never speak their own language on land, it being sacred of the sea.
  • always refer to themselves as aboard a ship, even when on land.
  • when on land, visit a bathhouse daily at a minimum.
  • cherish fresh water. Although not sacred, wasting fresh water is a moderate crime.
  • that live in cities are lonely folk, usually apart from their families, that like to join communities of like-minded individuals such as guilds.

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