Saturday, March 31, 2018

Amazons and Androgons


Amazons, the Happy Horsewomen

The golden plains to the east, where the lazy river Thermodon winds north to the Blackwine Sea, are a fertile land. Vast fields of grain and corn and countless herds of horses, bison, and oxen can be found there, as well as all manner of fruiting trees, nuts, and spices. At the river's mouth sits Temiskyra, and in her port all manner of boats travel here and there across the sea.

This is the land of the amazons; it is a land of peace and prosperity because no one in the world is fool enough to invade, and anyone fool enough to try is never good enough to get past the border.

Tales of their martial prowess are entirely true. The average amazon stands eight feet tall, and has been training with the horse, the bow, the spear, and the sword since she was old enough to walk. Amazonian men still taller and stronger than the average man, and are not the downtrodden slaves some would have you believe. Rumors of cutting off breasts are unfounded. Stories of their legendary hospitality and good humor are entirely true (why not laugh when nothing poses a threat?)

Otherwise, the following touchstones are important for travelers on the way to Temiskyra.

Damascene steel - The smiths of Temiskyra produce some of the best blades in the world (sans dwarves), through methods known only to them. The shimmering, swirling patterns have proven impossible to replicate by other men. Carbon nanotubes, y'all.

Barbecue - The wild boars of the golden plains are terrifying monsters. Hunts for both sport and necessity are common enough that they barely classify as news. This leads to a great amount of pork in local markets. Family-owned amazonian barbecue joints are one of the region's primary exports.

Lacrosse - It's like normal war, but nearly everyone lives through it so you can do it again. Often paired with barbecue. Used to solve disputes, mark holidays, or just for fun. Instituted in ages past as a way to avoid internal strife among the amazons.

Horses - Temiskyran horses are, as one would expect, huge. Large enough that it is next to impossible for non-amazons to ride them (and the reverse is true for amazons riding normal sized horses). Smaller horses are kept as beloved pets

Greatbows - The signature amazonian weapon. Even one skilled in its use must utterly root herself to the earth to draw it back.

The greatest warrior among the amazons is currently Sofi Scarbelly. She and her retinue are currently off fighting some sort of monstrous humanoids.

There is no link between the amazons of the Thermodon and the black amazons of the North, beyond naming conventions.

Amazon Character Class

Reroll STR and CON, take higher
HP: d10
XP: As elf
Saves: As fighter
To-hit: As fighter
Armor costs 1.5x the normal price.

Starting kit
  • Leather or chain armor
  • Spear and shield, sword and shield, or longbow
  • Longbow or greatbow
  • Quiver with 20 arrows or 5 greatarrows
  • A horse or a Fighter 0 hireling (usually a husband, son, or daughter-in-training)

5e Option: As Goliaths, replacing altitude acclimation with an additional +1 CON.

Tomas Duchek

Androgons, the Man's Men

In the days of the emperor Darvatius there was an entire legion formed of pairs of consecrated male lovers, sent out to pacify distant corners of the world and gain great glory for the banner of the eagle and bull. In the last days of the conquest the sacred band was sent past the Wall of Rhavian to subjugate certain tribes that had taken shelter with the Folk there, and there the record ends.

A few centuries later, when the world is still rebuilding from the global catastrophe of Darvatius' second conquest, a tribe calling themselves the Androgons descends from the lands beyond the Wall into the world at large. Scribes of the time considered them to be some new tribe of barbarians, but modern historians are quite certain they are Darvatius' lost legion merged with the tribes they had been sent to exterminate.

These Androgons (occasionally called the Gargareans, especially in older texts) are for the most part a wandering people: there are a few townships under their control, but most live in small bands of 20-200 individuals. They are quiet and isolationist: outsiders are not welcome in their camps, and their interactions with the greater world tend to be either succinct or violent. They make their living as soldiers of fortune, having no love of peaceful, settled lives. It is a hard life, but they enjoy it well enough.

Those who come into contact with the Androgons ought to bear in mind the following:

Virwyrd - lit. "the way of men". Androgons have strict pillars of manhood that they hold up: combat, camaraderie, practical handicraft, and stoicism. Public displays of emotion ought be limited to triumph over enemies or anger towards them - friendship is to be kept to the mess tent, and tenderness to the bunk. Sexual relations between Androgons are spoken of in near-businesslike terms outside of private moments.  

No Girls Allowed - Androgon reactions to women are mixed: ignorance reins on the whole, accompanied by bemusement, confusion, apathy, or hatred. Many competing theories have emerged, claiming that women are alien beings, misshapen or depraved men, demons, or most radically, human beings. The first and second attitudes are the most common. 

The Trailing Camp - War parties tend to accumulate non-Androgon camp followers. Having little in the ways of their own roots, they will often pick up Androgon customs and modes of dress. If there are any women to be found among the Androgons, they will be found here. Any children sired will be brought into the Androgon party to be raised and trained. The relations which bear these children are not spoken of. 

Battle-Thought - Philosophy and rhetoric are greatly valued by the Androgons, despite their warlike manners and lack of written history. There are great minds of Darvatius' time that exist now only as Androgon oral history.

Folk Arts - The greatest treasure among the Androgons are secrets given to them in their time beyond the Wall. Little study has been conducted of their Pathmaking and Bread-and-Salt traditions, and greater secrets still remain.

The greatest band of Androgons is that of the Ash Moon Banner. They are currently harassing the townships outside of Janashkut.

Androgon characters are fighters.


  1. This is post 100! Thank you all for reading!

  2. I do have to wonder what the first meeting between these two groups would look like.