The Rat Shapechangers of Caheb are not a race to their own, but former elves, humans, halflings and even dwarves. Living in the lush paradises of southern Caheb between the mountains and the sea, the creatures have been part of the land for possibly centuries – perhaps even longer. The shapechangers do not lose their intelligence, but their mental faculties are permanently altered to a more beast-like mind set. They act much more instinctively and have superior hearing and olfactory sense than their former form ever had.
Many shapechangers adorn clothing not unlike they used to wear in their original form and most use weapons and tools as good as any humanoid creatures. However, they no longer possess the patience to make such stuff so everything they have is either stolen, looted, pillaged or given to them by groups of people who worship them. It’s not unheard of that entire fishing villages are worshippers of the creatures and they give them food, weapons, clothing and other items out of either fear or respect or whatever.
The island of Myrna is the center of magical studies and magic in Cresia. Sorcerers from Myrna are without comparison in skill and in variety of magical disciplines. The reasons for this is that the island itself is a center area of magical power in Cresia. The southern areas of Caheb are similarly affected by residual magical power, but in Caheb the manifestations of this power are different, volatile, seasonally amplified and with an apparently evil streak.
The Rat Shapechangers of Caheb are just one manifestation of the powers at work. They are solely found in remote areas of southern Caheb where the mountains lower to the sea. The initial shapechanging process is unknown and mostly affects only inhabitants of smaller villages who have spent their entire lives there. In some areas fishing and farming communities may suffer even a 10% population loss due to their people turning into shapechangers. Some of the shapechangers live among their families, but most become too violent and irrational to be tolerated as part of their former community. They are rarely killed and usually just banished from their homes to live a life of solitary vagrancy. Some form packs of shapechangers that loot and pillage.
Dragons in Cresia are very rare. But far from nonexistent. They have long since learned to keep away from the lesser sentient races like humans and have adopted a policy of seclusion. The dragons have centuries ago withdrawn to remote areas where they can be at peace. Not that they couldn’t handle the lesser races – they just don’t need the extra excitement brought on by them.
Cresia has a dragon population of no less than 100 dragons. Most of them live in small groups of few individuals and they have huge territories spanning entire mountain ranges as hunting areas. Cresian dragons are highly intelligent and justly consider themselves superior to hominid creatures. Most of them hold within their heads vast libraries of legends, sagas, talltales and actual historical detail spanning thousands of years. Their memory is so superior that they have not developed – or have non need to develop – written language.
This red dragon lives in the extremely hard to get mountainous regions between Caheb and Akron. She is a mother of five and – soon – six. Her children all live in the same area as does their father as well. This family unit has had no contact with humans for many years and their last contact – a group of lost bandits – ended as snacks for the family.
Name: Menar Thuyven
Menar Thuyven comes from the borderlands area between the lands of Groam and Caheb. The area is mostly savage, lawless and sparsely populated, but holds fabulous riches where the sand dunes start to give away for the towering mountains between Caheb and Akron. The old lands of the ancient Groam are rich with unexplored ruins and many forgotten cities have been buried beneath the ever-moving and omnipresent sand.
Menar was born in a small village named Tyrros – nowadays an important way-point for desert crossing caravans. At a young age of 14 Menar left the village bored of it’s isolation and size. In the heat of this youth he joined a small band of bandits who robbed wayfarers. Few years later he realized the life of a petty criminal is not what he wants and separated from the group. He then joined a local count’s mercenary army to fight off ogres and secure trade transports crossing the mountains between Akron and Groam using the Medon Pass. During this time he truly noticed the rich ruins of the ancient past and become obsessed with finding a treasure that would secure him for life.
Now at an age of 36, Menar is an experienced adventurer and has a deep knowledge of the geography of northern Caheb and southern Groam in regards to ancient ruins. He has found many ruins and expensive treasures but so far nothing has been “enough” for him. Perhaps nothing ever is.
He spends a few months each year with his family in Tyrros and occasionally accompanies treasure hunters heading off to the desert looking ancient temples, castles or abandoned dragon hoards. Most such daring adventurers vanish without a trace but hiring someone like Menar improves the odds of returning back many fold!