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The Enid

On the surface, the Enid appear to be nothing more than clan-structured humans, with a few peculiarities that are unique to their society structure. The Enid live in a very patriarchal clan society. Some are nomadic, often living by trading in horses or other live stock, while others are farmers and a few even model their clans after the hard-working dwarves, earning most of their living through metal smithing if the raw materials of the area warrant it. While they tend to be a little standoffish, building in more remote areas and such, they will welcome friendly strangers who carry news from around the regions that they call home. Bards are especially welcome, and a skilled bard will likely leave with his pack well provisioned by whatever that clan’s staples of trade are. It’s not uncommon for bards of other races to winter with large clans.

The first thing of note to outsiders will be the ratio of men to women living in any given clan. The clan will always have a male chief, and each family within the clan will have a male head of the family. The ratio of males to females will be between 1 to 4 and 1 to 12 (one male to four to twelve females). Typically, the larger the clan, the higher the ratio of males to females will be.

Enid Society

The society of the Enid is very patriarchal, and the men make all the final decisions on important issues. However, they expect the women that answer to them to be self-sufficient on all the day-to-day decisions. The male head of each household defines what he considers to be issues warranting his attention. The Enid are a polygamist culture, with each male having two or more wives. An import chief of a large clan may have a score or more! There will always be a head wife (usually, but not always, the first wife he married), who keeps the affairs of the household organized. The first child born to a father is trained to become a family leader, and is traditionally referred to as "first born". He will also receive an apprenticeship in some skill or trade that he can use to benefit his family and clan. Women also receive training based on their skills and interests. It is considered most import to find an individual who is both skilled and interested in a particular area, and their gender or future gender has little to do with it. For instance, due to the higher proportionate number, a majority of Enid blacksmiths are female, a traditionally male role in most other societies.

The first son will start his own family, and traditionally marries three months after the Rite makes him an adult male. He is still part of his father’s family however, and when his father dies, all wives (and children if there are any) of his father become his to see after. In the event of the death of a family patriarch without an adult son, a young adult male from another family will take over the “fatherless” family. The final decision of who to place them with rests on the clan chief, who will engage the shaman, and the clan Arcane (clan mage) plus the members of the affected family. Their opinions are an important part of the clan chief’s decision.

In times of war, the bulk of the fighting tasks fall to the women, and the Enid’s tactics are specifically designed to protect their men as much as possible. Women will form the main shield line, with the men commanding the battle from behind the line, armed with spears to fight through the line or bows to shoot over the line. Those clans that use horses in battle will form similar tactics to protect the men. The men will always get the best armor available to a given clan and family.

Enid marriages are arranged through the clan patriarch. He will take the feelings of those involved in to account before consenting to an arrangement however. He will do whatever he can to find a happy pairing for the female with a male who is looking for wives. The clans frequently allow females to marry into other clans outside of their own.

The Rite of Change

The most important ritual that every Enid youth goes through is the Rite of Change. For sons this traditionally happens at age twenty without fail. For daughters, it customarily takes place at age fifteen, but this is her choice and may be delayed. (See the section on “Wanderers” below). The rite must be performed by age 25, or the individual will die within hours after sunset on the day of their birth.

To an outsider, the Rite of Change appears to be little more than a quaint custom recognizing the beginnings of adulthood, and making the individual available for marriage. In actuality, it triggers a physical change in the individual. Prior to the Rite, the Enid youth have no physical sexual characteristics. Before the Rite, the sex organs have not formed, and they are neither male nor female. The Rite sets into motion a drastic physical change, where the sex organs form and the individual becomes either male or female. The process takes six to eight weeks after the actual ritual, and is irreversible once set in motion (short of a Wish or divine intervention).

Names

Names in Enid society usually have a male and female version, such as Kar and Kara. Most female variants end in "a". A first child, who is expected to grow to be a son will usually be referred to using the male variation, whereas all other children will use the female variation. See also "The Rite of Change" and "The Wanderers".

Religion

Each clan will always have a shaman. Several other males will have a rudimentary knowledge of the job, in case something happens to this critical person. He will normally have an apprentice who will take over the duty when he passes away. If the apprentice hasn’t yet reached adulthood, then one of the other males will act as the interim shaman, until he reaches age twenty, and immediately takes responsibility after the Rite of Change. The Shaman marries and has a family like any other clan male. 

Adda, The Patriarch
The clan worships Adda, called the Patriarch, and the whole clan structure is based on how Adda lives in heaven. Adda is said to have a thousand wives, and each clan chief is considered to be an adopted son.

{In AD&D terms, Adda is a LG Demi-god}

 Positions within the Clan:  

Shaman
Each clan has a shaman, who fills a very import spiritual and guidance position within the clan. All members will consult him when making potentially life-changing decisions. The shaman normally has one or more apprentices. The most promising will become his successor, and this is one way for a child that wasn't the first-born to become male (see Rite of Change), as the Shaman is always male.

The Arcane
Each clan will normally have one mage, which they call the Arcane. While normally male, this position is sometimes filled by a late-blooming female, if she has enough promise as a mage. In that case, she is treated for all intents and purposes as a male, including taking wives and counseling the clan chief. The clan chief, or someone he appoints, assumes the duty of providing the wives of a female Arcane with children. The Arcane, like the shaman, raises a family and has wives like all other males. The position is considered critical to the defense of the clan. If they don’t have an Arcane, they will send prospective apprentices either to the closest clan, or to an outside mage to train and then return to serve the clan.  

First Son
Normally, the first child born to an Enid male will become the first son after the Rite of Change. However, this isn't guaranteed. If that child proves them self unworthy, then his father may choose to grant this privilege to the next-oldest child. This is rare, but does happen on occasion, after consultation with the tribe chief and the shaman.

The Wanderers
While the position of family male normally goes to the first born, there is an option available for those children who aren’t content to accept their lot as females. They may leave the clan for a time, and become wanderers, attempting to prove themselves in some great way as being capable of leading a family. There is a time limit however. They must complete their quest by their 25th birthday. They will feel drawn back towards their clan as that time nears, just as some fish and birds feel drawn home to reproduce. If they can not rejoin their clan in time, they will perish within a few hours of sunset on the day of their birth. Once they reach their clan, they plead their case to the clan’s chief, who is also counseled by the shaman and the Arcane, if the clan has one. He then decides if the individual’s accomplishments warrant their being granted male status. Sometimes, if this is granted, the new adult male will be sent away with several female wives, and the apprentice shaman to start a new clan. To prove herself worthy, the candidate will normally accumulate money, goods, or livestock sufficient to support a family (or a clan). They might also prove themselves by accomplishing some great quest for their clan.

The wanderers are an accepted part of clan life. They may ask for and receive hospitality with any other clan, and are frequently used to deliver news and messages between the clans. Even if unsuccessful in their bid, they gain an extra degree of respect, though they may be treated somewhat distantly by the other, less adventuresome, women after their return to the clan if they don’t succeed.

Champions of the Patriarch
There are a small number of Champions within the clan. They operate on the business of the god himself, and are said to have powers granted directly by Him, just as the clan shamans do. They serve to keep the peace and prevent excessive infighting or feuds between the clans. They have also been known to ruthlessly hunt down those who would try to destroy entire clans. They answer only to their god, and once accepted as a champion, have no ties to any one clan (though they will obviously still have more family in one clan).  

 

AD&D info:

The Enid are essentially human, albeit with some odd reproduction quirks... They have no racial advantages or disadvantages to speak of. The Enid are Caucasian, and come with all the physical characteristics (height, weight, hair and eye colors) one would expect of similar humans. 

On the whole, most Enid are Lawful Good, due to the structure of the culture they’re brought up in. Some lean towards Neutral Good, and some towards Lawful Neutral. It is rare to find a member of the Enid with an alignment that radically departs from these. They might be encountered as traders or merchants visiting a town or city. They might be encountered as herders on the open steppes, or some other secluded area. They can make a good encounter for a wounded party that needs a chance to regroup! They might consider granting aid to defeat something that could be considered a threat to their livelihoods. If a shaman or an Arcane were encountered (perhaps returning from a visit with another clan) he will always be well guarded by wives and quite possibly other assigned body guards (all of whom will be female). A Wanderer could be encountered anywhere of course.

Fighter is the most common class, and all adults will be at least first level fighters, with proportionate numbers of higher-level fighters. How many powerful fighters they have will be relative to threats of their environment. In a peaceful area, they may not have many fighters above 1st level. In a hostile environment, most may be 2nd or better.

Champions are AD&D Paladins, with Adda as their god. See the PHB for information on Paladins. 

Wanderers are typically fighters or rangers. A Wanderer mage (who was 2nd to someone else) wouldn't be unheard of.

A clan will usually have one shaman with one or more apprentices, and one Arcane, who also may have one or more apprentices. These NPC’s will normally be somewhere between 3rd through 9th level. Apprentices will always be at least 1 level lower, though they may be rather powerful as well. The more powerful characters will be part of larger, more established, clans. Any apprentice above 2nd level to the shaman will be a young adult male. Others will not necessarily have gone through the Rite of Change yet. Unless they show promise however, they will be forced to accept another position within the clan.

Because enquiring minds want to know... If an Enid female finds a mate from outside the clan, any children born will be normal half-whatevers (human, elf, etc), with normal sex at birth. On the other hand, if an Enid male mates with a female from another race, any children will be born sexless, and need to go through the normal Rite of Change for sure. Whether or not a half-Enid child who was born with a sex would need to go through the Rite, and whether they would suffer any ill effects if they didn't (prior to their 25th birthday) may be known to some wise Enid sage or shaman, but certainly isn't common knowledge, even amongst the Enid. So there!