Species: Namiccian

Name: Namiccian(s) [nam-EE-chee-en(z)]

Homeworld: Nami Ka

Height/Length/Weight: The namiccian people are an average size for bipeds, ranging in height from 5.5-7' and in weight from 130-265 lbs.

Physical Description: Namiccians are bipedal, amphibious reptiles. They are long in the torso and in the leg, streamlined in build, and tend to have very smooth, thick hide (though eli'namiccians - those who spend more time on the land than in the water - have a rougher, leathery or even pebbled texture to their skin). They have humanoid heads with flat faces, nostril slits (closeable) near a vertical ridge that suffices as a nose, large dark eyes with two eyelids (outer: thick, opaque - inner: thin, transparent), and long, pointed, fin-like 'ears'. (In reality, their large ears are actually just fins positioned near their ear-slits.) They have longish, flexible necks that enable them to look directly ahead while swimming and also when standing on the ground. Their shoulders aren't very broad, but their bodies are somewhat rounded and deep-chested (moreso in males than females, who tend to be slimmer). Their hands have two long, thick fingers and one thumb, all of which are webbed and tipped in flat, pointed fingernails (not quite claws; they don't curve, nor are they attached to cartilage/bone). Namiccians have long, powerful legs and webbed, clawed, three-toed talons. They have tails, the size of which varies based on breed, that are generally used as a rudder while swimming. Namiccians have fins along the sides of their skulls ('ears'), along the back of their head and down their neck, along the outer sides of their upper and lower arms, and along their spine (from between shoulder blades to the small of their back); these fins are generally to help stabilize and steer while moving, since the namiccian's power and speed in the water comes from its legs and tail. Namiccians have a remarkable regenerative system, able to heal quickly, regenerate lost limbs (over time), and perform the adaptation from breed to breed as they change habitats. In theory, a namiccian can regenerate any major limb and even parts of its torso, so long as its head, neck, and upper chest are intact; being submersed in water is necessary for any major regeneration. Namiccians have both lungs (breathing through their nostril slits) and gills (set directly behind/beneath their jaws, along their necks), which function relatively independently of one another; they also have a singular gill slit along the undersides of each wrist. Genitals are internal and relatively invisible to the outside eye; males and females are distinguished more by the size of the chest (bigger: male, smaller: female) than any visible reproductive organs.

Senses/Capabilities: Namiccians are extremely sensitive to magical energy and qki, making them fantastic at tracking down their own mages and shamans, or tahori young who have strayed too far. Their eyesight is mutable, seeing somewhat into the infrared spectrum and so responding very well to hot-blooded things (or warmer water currents); above-water, their eyesight is confusing and poor in bright light, though they do quite well at night. Likewise, their ears are specialized to be very keen underwater, but they have very poor above-water hearing unless the noise is deep or loud. Their senses of smell are similarly keener underwater, but they do quite well above-ground, especially in eli'namiccians. They have a very distinguishing sense of touch, especially on their fingertips and palms and ear-fins. As for capabilities, namiccians can swim at a creditable 25-30 mph and eli'namiccians can manage 20 mph in a run on land; they are quickly exhausted on land but have excellent endurance in the water. Namiccians are very deft and agile in the water, much less so on land, but namiccians who spend the most time on land are also the strongest.

Coloration/Clothing: Namiccians don't wear clothing underwater, but they have been known to wear cloaks or hoods (woven from very fine, durable grass-weeds) to protect themselves from the sun when above-water for long periods of time. Some of the eli'namiccians have also taken up the habit of wrapping their hands and feet in dried, cleaned, thinned animal-hide (often from reptiles) to make moving about on land-based terrain less abrasive. However, cloaks (with sleeves or merely with slits) and hoods, cowls, veils, and/or turbans are the only consistency for land-walking namiccians. As for colorations, namiccians naturally adapt to the colors of their surroundings over the course of a few days: eli'namiccians are often sandy brown, grey, darker brown, and/or dull green; lau'namiccians tend to be dark blue, dark purple, dark desaturated green, and/or black; gha'namiccians tend to be a murky range of greens and browns, plus some grey and yellow-green; and swa'namiccians are often silvery, pale blue, muted teal, and/or medium greybrown. However, any namiccian will change its colors if it changes habitat; eli'namiccians who live on sandy shorelines will be tawny, where eli'namiccians who live near ponds will be greener and darker. Those who move from one habitat to another will adapt in color as well as body, effectively changing their very race in the course of a few months of adaptation.

Races/Breeds: There are four distinct breeds of namiccian, determined solely by habitat, but any one individual can adapt into and out of each breed by changing habitat. (Quite literally, if a river namiccian leaves the river and goes to a swamp, in a matter of months he will have adapted to become a swamp namiccian.) Lau'namiccians live in the deep waters of lakes and seas, rarely emerging to the surface or walking on the shores except to give birth. They are long in the body with large, strong fins and a long tail; they have little tolerance for sunlight when they aren't wet and tire easily out of the water. Gha'namiccians live in swamps and marshlands, rarely walking along solid ground but often moving among the muck and the mud. They are short, often somewhat squat in build, and have small fins and a knee-length tail; they have no tolerance for cold and very little for being perfectly dry. Swa'namiccians live in swift-moving rivers, occasionally emerging onto riverbanks and forging through the nearby woods. They are thin and streamlined but rather strong for their build, being that they venture onto solid land fairly often; they are good in both hot and cold weather (and water) and have tough, sharp-edged fins with a fairly long, strong tail. Eli'namiccians live equally on land and in small ponds, oases, or streams, able to climb trees and navigate even difficult terrain, but poorer in open waters than their brethren. They have powerful frames, stiff fins, foot-long tails, and suffer being totally dry remarkably well; they prefer mild weather with lots of rain and are the strongest of the namiccians.

Language: Namiccians speak namin, a fluid and somewhat burbling language. It has a very deep, reverberating sound that travels well underwater, even when near rushing water (rapids, small waterfalls, surfs). Words have no real distinction between them - no pause for air, for example - and while this sonorous monologue is easily understand when the nuances of pronunciation are amplified by water, it is far more difficult to distinguish above the surface. To compensate, namiccians have taken to snapping their jaws between each word; some make a clicking noise by tapping their claws together, and others slap their palms against their thighs, for a similar purpose. Namin is fairly easy to learn for those who can learn it underwater first, but the above-water version has nuances too fluid and subtle for most air-breather ears to catch, unless they have extremely keen hearing.

Technology: Namiccians have a fairly low technological level; they don't work with metals at all. They are weavers and wood-workers, and they can do miraculous things with bones and rocks and some crystals. They primarily build things out of wood for the surface - huts and whatnot - while their underwater constructions are woven from mats of seaweed and tied to large rocks at the bottom. Some structures use sticks to form a less flowing framework, but most namiccian weavers are skilled enough to build strength and shape into their work. Rocks are used to sharpen bones, and both sharp rocks and bone pieces are used as spear-points and knife-points.

Magic: Namiccians are quite adept at magic, both arcane and water magic, and some few can also master air and earth magic. By human standards, namiccian magic-workers would be classed as pure mages and elemental mages; they have no real talent with druidic magic, warlockery, or the Light. Namiccians are spontaneous mages; they don't spend time preparing an elaborate spell or ritual and instead simply use magic at will. This means that they are inherently less powerful than sorcerors who will take the time to implement a ritual, but they have an edge on most human mages who take time before casting a spell. Namiccians typically use magic to defend themselves from wild animals in the water or on the land, but some few use it in divinitory ways and are called seers.

Values: The namiccians primarily value a peaceful existence. They enjoy the ability to live with others while still retaining individuality and privacy, the ability to help provide for the community without having to toil every waking hour, and the freedom to enjoy life as they choose. Namiccians are willing to compromise on certain things and put in a hearty effort in order to earn and maintain this peaceful existence. Some few namiccians also value physical prowess and actually work to train their bodies to be faster/stronger/etc, but these are few (and tend to be eli'namiccians).

Social Groups/Society: Namiccians live in loose communities, more out of practicality than any pressing need to socialize in large numbers. Communities tend to be stationary in one place, but namiccians change community as they wish, which can be fairly often. Namiccians who are adults but not elders are required to make themselves useful in some fashion to the community in order to stay - those who are wounded or sick are tended without exception until they're healthy enough to contribute or move on. Communities are generally laid-back in hierarchy; the most skilled or experienced lead and teach the younger and inexperienced, and children are often raised communally. Most communities have several separate but not autonomous groups within them, usually factions of those who are good at a particular thing - fishing, weaving, etc. Most communities have a seer or two to guide them.

Reproduction/Aging: Namiccians have an interesting form of sexuality. Females are cyclical, feeling the drive to mate and reproduce approximately once a year, though they can ignore it and choose to remain barren. However, those who succumb to instinct go into open, clear water and begin something of a swimming dance; males follow, and the one who can best keep up and match her (in speed/endurance as well as style and grace) stays with her. They mate, and anywhere between a month or two afterwards, the female goes ashore to lay two to six eggs. Though the community does guard these shoreline nests, predators and weather conditions normally kill two-thirds of the eggs before they can hatch. Hatchlings are remarkably physically mature, able to walk within moments of hatching; however, their gills don't develop until they're about a year old, so they stay on land exclusively for their infancy. (This also helps their bones and muscles begin a strong development.) Hatchlings learn to swim in their second year and begin to stay in the water more than on the land by their third; they're adolescents at five and adults at seven. Namiccians are extremely long-lived, given their physical adaptability and regeneration, and often live well into their 150s; oldest recorded namiccian was 201 years old. Most namiccians die from natural causes (wild animals, illness, whatnot) before they pass 160.

Habitat/Settlements: Namiccians live in a decent variety of habitats. Some live in the seas, surfs, and deep lakes; others live in marshlands, swamps, and ponds; some live in rivers and streams; yet others live in fairly dry or cold climates with only an oasis or an underground river/spring to sustain them. No namiccian will voluntarily live far from water, though some theorize that they're physically capable of surviving, given their adaptability. Namiccians do poorly in very cold weather but don't mind extreme heat, so they tend to stay in tropical or warm climates. As for settlements, each community has a series of shelters for its own members, as well as travelers. Eli'namiccian communities have above-water structures, made of woven weeds and sticks and sometimes even animal hides; the rest tend to have underwater shelters that are more fluid and grid-like (as opposed to solid walls). Namiccians are responsible for building their own shelters; some undertake the effort alone for their privacy, others join up to make the construction swifter and easier.

Religion/Beliefs: Namiccians don't so much have a religion as they have a harmony-based philosophy. They don't harm, construct, kill, or alter anything unnecessarily; most of them eat fish and plants, forsaking above-water hunting entirely. They are a peaceful people and emphasize this in their lifestyles and their interactions with others.

Interaction w/ Other Species: Namiccians are closely tied with the tahori - in particular, inlanlu and atihresi - and consider them to be fast friends and allies. Namiccians were nearly wiped out by the tache and would (attempt to) kill a tache on sight, should they see one, but they are primarily peaceful people and don't make fearsome fighters. Namiccians have had extremely limited interaction with humans and tend to get along with them reasonably well, but there are too few case studies to generalize.

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