Species: Kahashi Tahori

Name: kahashi tahori

Homeworld: Alasa Ka

Height/Length/Weight: Like all the tahori, kahashi have three distinct 'skins' (bodies/forms). In the hamin ('human') skin, they stand 6-7' tall (typically closer to 6') and weigh between 175-250 lbs (typically around 200 lbs). In the emigonu ('mix') skin, they stand 7-8' tall (typically 7.5') and weigh between 250-300 lbs (typically 250 lbs). In the sanero ('animal') skin, they are 9-11' long with a girth of ~2', weighing 550-660 lbs.

Physical Description: Kahashi are a race of the overarching species of tahori, and as such, they have three distinct skins, which they can shapeshift between freely. Their smallest skin is the hamin or humanoid skin; they resemble tall, lean humans in nearly every detail, barring smaller ears (behind which are gills, but those are fairly unobtrusive). Kahashi are the only tahori to have no tail in hamin skin; they are also completely hairless, their hide retaining the (desaturated, somewhat lighter) colors and markings of their other skins. They're also leanly muscular and very athletic in constitution, which is a tendency that extends throughout all their skins. Their middle or 'mixed' skin is the emigonu skin, a blend of their other two skins; they stand bipedally but digitigrade. They have shark-like jaws atop a more mobile head-and-neck; their limbs are long and lined with fins, hands and feet clawed and webbed; a dorsal fin crests from their spine, but they still lack the tail. Their skin is thicker and coarse like sandpaper; their gills are prominent, ears gone. Many consider the emigonu skin to be more dangerous even than the sanero skin, simply for the fact that it is equally deadly in the water and on land; it also lacks genitalia and so is less vulnerable in combat. Their largest and most bestial skin is the sanero skin; it resembles an oversized (tiger) shark in virtually every way. Kahashi, like all the tahori, are perpetually hungry unless their largest skin's belly is full (and then, they can't shift until some of the meal has been digested and eliminated from their systems, lest their stomachs explode upon changing to a smaller skin). Shapeshifting itself is a swift and unmagical transition between skins that heals most wounds (but not poison or illness); a kahashi employs their inner qki, physical perceptions are numbed for a moment, and they shift seamlessly from hamin to emigonu to sanero and back - they must go through the emigonu skin if going from hamin to sanero or vice versa. If a kahashi's qki is almost dry or almost choked off, shifting does not numb the body and the process, while still short (2-5 seconds), becomes wrenchingly painful. If they have massive wounds in need of healing, the kahashi must successively shift between skins multiple times in order to heal wounds in stages; they cannot gather qki in advance for shapeshifting, unlike most of the tahori.

Senses/Capabilities: Kahashi have an unusual set of senses. In hamin skin, they have decent sight (dull colors, movement-based, fairly good range), good hearing (better with low-pitched noises), and a very keen sense of smell (at least where blood is concerned; subtle scents and individual identification/pheromones escape them). In emigonu skin, their hearing is more biased towards low pitches, their eyesight shorter in range but useful in both air and water, and their sense of smell capable of distinguishing scents in both air and water. In sanero skin, their eyesight is short-range but still movement-based, their sense of hearing perfectly suited to the water, and their sense of smell supplemented by the ability to pick up electromagnetic fields of very close creatures. In all skins, this extra sense contributes to how keenly and well kahashi can sense qki and qki/magic use. As for capabilities, kahashi are quick and strong and ever-moving, more well-rounded than excelling in one particular attribute. They are not fast on land, managing a run of 20 mph in hamin skin and 30 in emigonu skin, but they can swim up to 35 mph in emigonu skin and up to 45 mph in sanero skin, making them the fastest things in the water. Comparatively, kahashi are usually as strong as atihresi or inlanlu, as slow as dosa on land, about as agile as inlanlu on land but far better in the water, and as enduring as dosa (they can keep up slow speeds for a very long time, but can't manage high speeds for a long time, unlike inlanlu and ehsora).

Coloration/Clothing: Kahashi don't wear clothing unless they walk about in hamin skin regularly (which is rare; most kahashi on land are in emigonu skin) - those that do typically stick with short, form-fitting leggings. (Kahashi women typically go topless as much as the men.) As many kahashi as not have markings, which are typically dappling/mottling or spotting/rosetting; unlike most, these markings are almost always a much lighter color than the rest of the kahashi, a mimicry on how light shines through the water's surface. Kahashi can be many colors: medium-light blue-grey and medium-light golden-brown are the two most common, but kahashi have been known to be many shades of grey or brown, occasionally even black or pale enough to be considered white. Most kahashi greys are blue-tinged, but some have a greenish caste; likewise, most kahashi browns are yellow-tinged, but some have a reddish caste. Kahashi have black eyes; their claws in emigonu skin are often just a darker shade of their hide.

Races/Breeds: Kahashi have no distinguishable ethnicities; they are the only tahori other than keusunes to not have disparate races.

Language: All kahashi speak two languages; kahashian and Uhjayi, the inlanlu tongue. Kahashian itself can only be spoken when in emigonu or sanero skins and while underwater. It is very simple in both structure and vocabulary; much like inlanlu howling or atihresi roaring, it is primarily used to convey concepts, rather than precise messages, across long distances. Some kahashi can manage to speak (a very mangled version of) Uhjayi in emigonu skin, but most can only speak it in hamin skin, making communication between a non-hamin kahashi and any other tahori difficult at best. Kahashi do not (and really, cannot) teach kahashian to any other tahori, since the land-dwellers lack the ability to hear all the nuances in the syllables as spoken underwater.

Technology: Kahashi don't use technology, not even basic blade weaponry.

Magic: Kahashi don't use magic. In fact, they rather scorn it.

Values: Kahashi value prowess in battle and in the hunt. They are predators to the core and do not respect those who cannot fight tooth and nail for their own lives and the right to survive, hunt, eat, and breed. However, they are not primitive or unintelligent people; on the contrary, kahashi are very intelligent and extremely efficient. Physical prowess, survivability, pride, and efficiency are their mainstays.

Social Groups/Society: Kahashi are loosely social. They rarely form any lasting groups and have no sense of hierarchy; they even lack a good sense of community and cooperation. Their unmarked territories often overlap with other kahashi territories, so they encounter their own kind often enough to form a loose relationship; they are social when bored, independent when hunting. Some few kahashi are curious enough about land-dwelling tahori to come to the surface and walk the earth frequently, but they still show no pack tendencies or racial loyalty. (Many tahori will aid or befriend another of their own race simply because they are similar; kahashi do not.)

Habitat/Settlements: Kahashi build no settlements and leave no trace of their existence on their environment. Needless to say, kahashi live in the water, though they are capable of emerging to walk the land. There are as many kahashi who live in the deep waters and never walk as there are who live close enough to shores or islands to occasionally surface and explore. Kahashi are generally efficient enough in staying alive that they can afford to be curious, so interesting environments and lots of methodical, slow travel (akin to a nomad's wandering) are generally employed to keep them from boredom.

Religion/Beliefs: Kahashi have no particular religion or belief system. Unlike many of the tahori, they don't acknowledge individual animal/plant/person spirits, nor do they pay much mind to the animistic concept of a uniting life-force or universal soul.

Interaction w/ Other Species: Kahashi don't regard any species much one way or the other. They respect taches as powerful warriors but fought them just as hard as any other tahori during the war; they would likely look down on humans, were they ever to meet them. Kahashi do not go to Nami Ka, mostly because they would likely try to eat the namiccians. Kahashi don't hunt land-dwelling sentients, but anything in the water is fair game, in their way of thinking; they have no regard for diplomacy or pacifism and will only respect and be peaceable towards a race that proves its ability to enforce the coexistence. Izune, ehsora, and most aresa stay well away from kahashi, but inlanlu, atihresi, and dosa usually have little to fear, so long as they stay on the land.

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