Avian, Variant (5e Race)

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Avian[edit]

Avos was once tethered beyond the stars - This much is known.
There was no beginning, for the Avian kind have lived eternally beyond the mortal realm.
In the Aether they dwelt within the embrace of Kluex, the winged one above all.
Kluex gifted them with true wings, and they worshipped in kind.
—Avoscript: Verse 1:1:1

Physical Description[edit]

Because they have evolved over time to optimize their survival on the planet Avos, this bird-like race has a significantly lighter build than most races. While they share the same internal organ systems as other humanoids, the most significant feature of avian anatomy is their plumage, which covers their entire body. Their feathers come in every color, from dull matte colors to brilliant chromatic or opalescent hues. In place of a mouth, avians develop beaks that match their environments and dietary preferences. Additionally, much like the birds that they are closely related to, they have developed sharp talons on their feet and have three toes rather than the standard five. Finally, they have small tail feathers that are extraneous in purpose, only serving as a constant reminder of their time prior to their punishment at the hands of Kluex.

History[edit]

Avian history began with the discovery of Kluex, the "Winged God of the Aether" and creator of the avians. According to the Avoscript, the sacred text of the avians, the avian race was once a divine race with graceful wings, very similar to that of angels. When the avians eventually discovered the Material Plane, they grew jealous of the pleasures that the other humanoids enjoyed. In order to obtain these commodities themselves, avians crossed into the material world, landing on the planet Avos. This act enraged Kluex, forcing him to punish the avians by stripping them of their ethereal wings, dooming them to be forever flightless. The Avoscript decrees that the avians will only regain their wings in the afterlife, should they achieve absolution through worship.

During the beginnings of avian civilization, tribes of avians would from their own groups, living in isolation from other avians. Because of the lack of communication and globalization, technology remained primitive, leaving the avian race stuck in the avian equivalent of the Bronze Age. Hundreds of wars were fought between the races, leaving the avian race stuck in limbo, never being able to progress in their state of living. This tribal style of living continued until the advent of the Stargazers, high priests of Kluex who attempted to unify avian society under one god. Because of the importance of religion throughout their history, the Stargazers developed a theocratic system of rule. All political and societal power was given to them, allowing them to control society in a way that would most please Kluex.

The most monumental event in avian history is the discovery of Avolite on their homeworld. This crystalline element is found exclusively on the planet Avos and is considered the hardest material found in the known universe. They are mined solely by the Stargazer priests and power everything from simple lights to spaceships. Through intense experimentation, Avolite has been proven to be hundreds of times stronger than diamond, and because of this they cannot be reshaped and must maintain their massive size. Avians eventually used the massive Avolite crystals to power new forms of technology. In less than a century after the discovery of Avolite, the avians invented their own version of the warp drive, granting them the ability to travel to new galaxies and planets. Through careful retelling and rewriting of history by the Stargazers, most avians believe that it was Kleux who planted the Avolite crystals deep in the planet's core. In doing so, the Stargazers famously announced that the avians were gracefully given a second chance to prove their faithfulness, finally being able to retake their place at Kluex’s side in the Aether.

This theology does not sit well with all avians however, and a growing number have rejected the words of the Stargazers and the divinity of Kluex. Calling themselves "Grounded", they have taken to the stars and formed their own colonies. Some have crafted terrestrial flying ships and make their lives in piracy, and many others have joined multi-racial organizations like the famous Terrene Protectorate, a multi-racial organization founded on Earth that fights for universe-wide peace.

Society[edit]

Because the Stargazers are the highest echelon of avian ruling structure, avian culture is centered entirely around the worship of Kluex. Statues of Kluex taking on a serpentine shape can be found scattered throughout an avian village, and the creation of art is greatly encouraged in avian society. Because of this, avians have developed to be some of the most skilled and passionate painters and sculptors in the universe. A common pastime that avian children take part in is the creation of tribal banners, small flags that bear the symbol of Kluex. These are usually hung on the ceiling directly under the village marketplace, representing Kluex's blessing for success.

Avian villages are usually structured in a very specific way, with each feature of the village fulfilling an order from the Avoscript. Firstly, a large wooden bridge leads straight to the village from about 500 feet away. The bridge is dotted with large wooden poles, each with a large tapestry or tribal banner topping it. When travelers arrive at the village, they will notice many wooden houses scattered in a circular pattern around the village marketplace. Within the center of the village is the marketplace, a place where avians gather to sell goods and socialize. At the very center of town lies a gigantic artistic sculpture or mural that represents the physical manifestation of Kluex. The Avoscript states that it must be made of gold and must be created by the most talented artists in the village. At the far end of the village, opposite to the wooden bridge, lies the cemetery, where the dead are buried. The Avoscript states that death must be welcome in avian society, as those who have led a good life will sit at the foot of Kluex in the afterlife.

One of the most controversial part of avian society is the practice of living sacrifice. Sacrificing enemies and fellow avians is common in society and often encouraged by the Stargazers to please Kluex. According to the Avoscript, an avian can only be reunited with Kluex by shedding their mortal body while keeping the truest of faith in their hearts. Ceremonies to achieve this state of pure being include ritualistic sacrifices of captured enemies and an elaborate procession that sends the most devout of avians to Kluex. These avians are hand-picked by the Stargazers and are chosen based on their faithfulness and good deeds. After four days of indulgence and comfort, the candidates climb a tall tower with their village's Stargazer. After the Stargazers leads the village in prayer and the candidate is covered in oils and gold dust, they plummet to their death as their spirit breaks free of its mortal prison. This act allows the candidate to fly into the Aether, as their now-discarded body plummets to the ground below.

Their wooden structures, simple clothing, deeply-religious nature and rather simplistic battle tactics make them seem primitive at first glance. However, the avians are very intelligent, and anyone brave or foolish enough to venture into an avian temple or tomb will find examples of advanced -and deadly- technology, powered by Avolite crystals.

Avian Names[edit]

Avian namesakes are based on real-life Mesoamerican cultures, more specifically the Mayan tribes of South America. Additionally, among their own, an avian will often be granted a title based upon their accomplishments and cultural role.

Male: Yaoatl, Manitli, Tilzqui, Maloxoc, Xochic, Cencaca, Tiln.

Female: Zelextl, Tolli, Nextlal, Monya, Sacoatl, Cuhtl, Mizque.

Title: Windwalker, Starcaller, The Vigilant, Watcher of Kleux.

Avian Traits[edit]

An advanced race of bird-like humanoids that are deeply connected with their god Kluex.
Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 2, and your Dexterity score increases by 1.
Age. Avians share the same lifespan as humans, reaching adulthood in their late teens and living less than a century.
Alignment. Because of their intense devotion to Kluex, almost all avians are Lawful in nature. A small minority of avians that rebel from their theological society tend to be Chaotic, however.
Size. While avians are just about as tall as humans, they are extremely light, weighing about 80 to 110 pounds on average. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Riding the Wind. Your maximum jump height is doubled and you are resistant to fall damage. Additionally, whenever you would use movement to jump, you can make a long jump or high jump from a standing position without using 10 feet of movement speed and taking no penalties from a standing long or high jump.
Kluex's Influence. Even if you try to defect from the Stargazer-ruled society, Kluex's teachings are always present in your mind. You are proficient in the Religion skill.
Avian Mysticism. You can attune to any rod, staff, or wand, regardless of your class. In addition, any rod, staff, or wand you wield gains an additional 2 charges. Your spell save DC for any spell you cast from a rod, staff, or wand is equal to 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Avish, a dialect of Auran that has been developed while avians were alone on Avos.

Random Height and Weight[edit]

Base
Height
Height
Modifier*
Base
Weight
Weight
Modifier**
5′ 6″ +1d8 95 lb. × 1 lb.

*Height = base height + height modifier
**Weight = base weight + (height modifier × weight modifier)



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