Edav

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Driven by their intuitive senses of self and individuality, the edavs are a commonly seen stretching the creative limits of whatever profession they choose for themselves. Rarely are they motivated by external needs; rather, they feel they must feed their souls and minds first so that their bodies know what path to take. While their loose interpretations of overly rigid laws can lead them to trouble, in their homelands throughout the planet Sigzlor, edavs have historically been regarded as a pulse for a community for their regular willingness to do what is right by their beliefs, regardless of the consequences. When one edav disregards a law, it is the individual's choice; if all edavs disregard a law, the law is unjust.

Etymology and Other Names

The name edav comes from a Morish word for certain types of devils, ĕdaf, modified over time by local linguistic conventions.The edavs' arrowheaded tails, claws, and some subspecies' bat-like wings reminded old colonists from Estvoled of their myths and legends about vile creatures lurking in the great beyond. The name edav has become divorced from its etymological roots especially as other languages have adopted the term or otherwise adapted it for themselves. Even native Sigzlorian languages eventually lost their original name for the edavs, displaced by the Morish word.

Biology

Edavs are covered in shaggy dark fur that grows especially thick around their joints and head. The thickly-growing fur around their heads might be considered analogous to hair in other races, and some edavs will deliberately grow it to enormous lengths. Brown, black, and grey are the most common colors seen in edav fur; if they have bodily markings, such as a darker colored snout, these markings are of a similar color to the rest of their body and tend to be mostly limited to solid splotches of color at the ends of their faces, ears, or limbs. The edav cultural emphasis on individuality may lead to some edavs dyeing their fur to make themselves more colorful or to display a certain mark on their body.

The faces of edavs are rounded, almost oval-shaped, with a pronounced snout and long ears that do not stand upright situated at the tops of their heads. Their ears generally go as far down as their shoulders. Some edavs have very thin ears or snouts that do not "dip" from the face and have a nosebridge at the same height as the forehead. Others have wide, but shorter ears. Edavs all have long clawed nails on both their hands and feet; even when cut, the nails grow back quickly.

Unlike most other races, edavs are naturally ambidextrous and do not display handedness. Many of them can also hold objects with their flexible arrowhead tails, giving them almost three hands of equal dominance to manipulate objects. It is rare, but some subspecies of edavs have small, gnarled bat-like wings that protrude from their shoulders. These wings are too small to truly grant flight without the assistance of magic, but the fingers of the wings demonstrate a similar flexibility to an edav's hands and can hold objects, albeit with much less finesse and strength.

Sociology

Central to edav culture is the idea of one's "true self," which can only be discovered with copious amounts of exploration and adventure. Edavs are quick to adopt mannerisms from others just as quickly as they discard them for not being what they envision for themselves. They also regularly modify their body, though when they are still exploring their idea of the self, these modifications tend to be temporary so that they can be removed and replaced with something better-fitting later. They are much looser with the idea of gender than other races, focused more on appearing true to their inner sense of being even if this results in "conflicting" gendered behaviors or appearances. The stereotypical edav is androgynous, but the reality is that edavs tend to pick and choose traits associated with a given gender rather than appear as no gender at all. Some edavs raised far from societies with stricter ideas of gender may even struggle with any sort of gendered language, instead favoring whatever pronoun or gendered conjugation feels "right" for a given sentence just by its sound or the situation.

The focus on the individual leads to edavs living more amongst other races than themselves. Because other races tend to have more of a focus on needs or other external motivations for careers and work, this leaves the edavs free to pursue their own agendas and explorations of the self. A society solely comprised of edavs would be subject to the various individuals' whims for what skills are available to them. This is not to say edavs avoid their own kind; on the contrary, they often find only fellow edavs truly understand the drive to make their true selves reality. In practice, if an area has too many edavs, it is likely that some of them will leave for less edav-dense regions to ensure that they are not forced into a line of work they dislike out of "necessity".

Because edavs stray from doing things they do not want to do or that are incompatible with their idea of the self, they very regularly hire or other patron others to do work they themselves do not want to do. These lifestyles can lead to edavs being seen as extravagant or even lazy by others. Edavs themselves would see this as doing their part in paying others to do the work that is part of others' true selves, allowing them to remain as the person they want to be. They might also use this extra time in exploring their own true selves and becoming masters of whatever skill they have deemed part of their self. Because hiring others to do work for them is expensive, edavs that find their calling in life will focus on becoming masters of it such that it will pay for the lifestyle that their true self desires.

Racial Traits (D&D 3.5e and Pathfinder)

Overview

Edavs are a Medium race and inherit no bonuses or penalties for their size. Edav characters may choose either +2 Dexterity and -2 Constitution or +2 Intelligence and -2 Charisma to be applied to their starting attributes. Edavs are naturally lithe and flexible, but often frail of body for all the modifications they make it endure; they might often be geniuses in their field, but their unusual individual-focused culture leaves them sometimes struggling to relate to other races.

Skilled Dilettante (Ex)

Flavor

Edavs often have an eclectic mix of talents and skills accumulated throughout the years that they can call upon in times of need. A given edav could have anecdotes about disparate skill sets earned from moonlighting as a circus acrobat or once working as an engineering apprentice. All it takes is for the edav to consider their varied pasts, all of the different paths they took to learn who they really are and what will make them most happy -- roads not taken that supply guidance for the life they now lead.

Mechanics

At the start of the day, the edav declares one skill to receive an untyped bonus of +2 and another skill to receive an untyped bonus of +1. They may change what skills have the Skilled Dilettante bonus as a free action, but every time they do, the bonus decreases by 1 to a minimum of +0, and they must change both skills at the same time (though the edav can choose the same skill multiple times in a row). At the start of the next day, these bonuses reset to their maximum values and decay according to changes within that day, unaffected by the previous day. At character level 5th, the Skilled Dilettante bonuses begin at +4 and +2. At character level 10th, the bonuses begin at +6 and +3. At character level 15th, the bonuses begin at +8 and +4.

Keywords: Extraordinary ability, free action

Flexible Tail (Natural Ability)

Flavor

Most edavs have a long, flexible tail that has joints all throughout it, enabling them to twist and turn their tails in ways that other races cannot. Because of this, an edav's tail is able to hold small objects, freeing up an edav's hands; in the throes of battle, edavs are especially good at grabbing fallen weapons or items of use, but their tails more have a reputation for being used for petty thievery and snatching away items when no one else can see them.

Mechanics

Edavs can grab unattended objects within five feet of them as a swift action even if their hands are not free. They can hold one object with their tails that they would normally be able to hold in their hands, but they cannot activate them or perform any actions with them, such as reloading a firearm or activating a wand or scroll, unless they already have the free hands needed to perform the action normally. Weapons cannot be wielded with an edav's tail. Switching an object from being held in an edav's hands to their tail or vice versa is a free action that can be performed once per round so long as the edav has a free hand (if receiving an item into their hands) or if they are not holding anything in their tails (if receiving an item into their tail).

Keywords: Natural ability, swift action, free action

Jack of All Trades (Natural Ability)

Flavor

Throughout their lives, edavs are expected to wear different identities and try different jobs so that, through process of elimination, they can better understand their true selves. Some might even go so far as to say that an edav who has only tried one thing is no edav at all, but someone who fears knowing who they truly are underneath their surface identity.

Mechanics

Edavs have a +1 racial bonus to two different Profession skills of their choosing.

Keywords: Natural ability, passive