Forsworn

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Forsworn was the name of a Miouran nation located off the coast of Ores that was spared its various neighbors' conquests for how they forsook contact with the outside world. Their island was protected by great barriers of white Chrono, and the inhabitants held a reputation for their faithful fervor. From the shores of Ores, it was possible to see the great sigils and stone obelisks that were scattered throughout the island.

Government

Forsworn was ruled by a council of elders said to have been so ancient that they were present when the long-standing barrier around the island was first created. In turn, the elders adhere to a strict religious code of conduct and pass down the traditions of old to the new generations. While the exact number of elders on the council could fluctuate, there were never fewer than ten at a time, and they favored having odd numbers so that when debating divisive issues, it would be impossible to have a stalemate. The selection process for becoming an elder was rigorous and tended to be something that elders would train successors for deliberately, though nobody could be on the council of elders without being at least a hundred years old.

Small communities tended to defer to messengers that would report to the council of elders to lay out the community's concerns or questions. Because this was a rather slow process by design, community members were encouraged to resolve their own problems and self-police according to doctrine and only rely on the council for important matters.

Culture

The people of Forsworn isolated themselves from all other nations, opting to keep themselves apace of foreign happenings with various scouts that had been hand-picked to go out into the world and report back home. Such scouts were commanded to never reveal their affiliation or place of origin, and they were demanded to travel in groups of two under the commandment to report any dissent from their scouting companion should it occur. Thus incentivized, the scouts were to be within the world, but to never be a part of it and to never lose sight of why they were Forsworn.

Within the island, the sigils that defended the island were maintained by two groups of people -- the ascended and the descended. The ascended were selected among adolescents reaching adulthood, whereas the descended were picked from birth based on bloodlines that responded best to the sigils. Members of either group were forbidden to look upon the other's face, even if they had been close in childhood before they were sorted into a respective group. Because of this divide and the religious obedience that governed the island, it was an easily-kept secret that members of the ascended -- most numerous -- were, in fact, turned into undead, their lives sacrificed to uphold the barrier. The descended, on the other hand, were kept alive so that they might have children in the future who could continue to tend to the island barriers and await the coming of the chosen one of al-Kaniali, their dreaming god.

Naming

Perhaps unsurprisingly for a nation that was likely once part of Ores, Forsworn names tend to be Shekzardic in origin. However, many of them, in contrast to typical Shekzardic names, had vowels at the start or end of their names, and a great many of them had names that exceeded the usual two syllables of Shekzardic names. Names that began with a vowel would almost always end in that same vowel, such as Alntoza. More traditional Shekzardic names would still favor soft sounds and repeating the same vowel sound but with a different consonant, such as Telren.

Demographics

As a Miouran nation, all of Forsworn's population were precursors. Undead precursors were in the majority during most years, though some seasons of high birth rates among the descended could see the ratio approach 50:50.

Due to necromantic influence from their wards and reliance on the magic, Forsworn had extraordinarily pale and washed out skintones compared to other precursors. They might have had more vibrant eyes or markings at times, and there were no known incidences of a Forsworn precursor having pure white hair or markings, even if some of them (especially among the ascended) may have had especially light grey hair or markings as they aged and were exposed to more auras of necromancy. Even living Forsworn precursors would have faint glows compared to Miourans from other nations; the few aware of the presence of Forsworn scouts throughout the world may have used the strength of the glow from the eyes or skin as a sign that the Forsworn were among them.