Sirins

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Sirins

A small family of Sirins.


Land and People

Little is known about sirins and their culture. They inhabit at least half of Windas, mostly keeping to the northern boreal forests and frozen mountains. It's not known exactly when or how sirins came about, but the human tribes in Windas have been speaking of sirins for countless generations. To these tribes, the sirins are essentially spirits.

Appearance

Sirins are stout humanoids, able to withstand low temperatures that would kill ordinary humans. Their coats of fur and thick bodies allow them to withstand cold, and though their tails are large, they often keep them against their bodies when conserving heat. Their feet are large and round to help them walk on snow, and their pads allow them to walk on frozen or icy surfaces without slipping. Both their hands and feet are clawed, though their hands are much more like a human's. They have the muzzle and nose of a canine -- with more sharp teeth than a human -- though the muzzle is so short as to mostly go unnoticed, with the exception of very old sirins where the muzzle is more prominent. Strangely, they have hair on their head aside from their tail, similar in growth and colour to their tails, yet different to their body fur everywhere else. Most sirin are shades of grey and brown, varying from medium dark to pale, and their hair is usually darker and sometimes reddish in hue. Their eyes are always bright blue.

Clothing

Sirins usually wear simple, natural forms of clothing: apron-like or skirt-like items are common and often all that is worn, often made from animal hide, with the fur on the inside and turned out at the edges; grass and hide are used for strap-like or belt-like accessories, such as those used for carrying prey; body paint is common, usually shades of red or brown, often on the cheeks and shoulders, though more lines have been seen on seemingly more powerful sirins; headbands, legbands, collars, and armbands have been seen at times, usually made from shells, bone, teeth, or other small natural items. It is not known whether these items have sentimental, religious, cultural, or practical importance. Aside from these things, their outfits seem mostly practical and sirins do not seem to have much care for elaborate or festive decoration.

Weapons and Fighting

Sirins mostly wield spears of varying kinds, ranging from long-shafted spears with sharp flint heads, to serrated weapons made from sawfish skulls and other animals, to short-shafted spears with a cluster of long flint spines at the end. There are stories of sirins attacking from a long distance, but there is little evidence that sirins use slings, bows, or any similar weapon of great range, as it is believed they prefer to hunt by chasing and spearing prey. Some have speculated that sirins can use some spears as throwing javelins.

Though cautious by nature, sirins are known to attack and kill humans. They are known to be fierce fighters, quick and silent and coordinated, and it is said that they will eat whatever or whoever they kill. It is also believed that they do not fear blood, pain, or death, and although the Wwinda tribes see sirins as distant beings almost divine in nature, the Oussa tribes have many stories of sirins dragging away stray members of their tribes to eat or breed with. A cross-breed between sirins and humans is rare, but such beings are rejected by both sides when they are born.

Culture and Dwellings

Aside from the small amount of decorative accessories worn by sirins, none of their spiritual or religious beliefs are known. It is also unknown whether they have any form of entertainment, such as music or dance or singing. The body paints, seen on most sirins at most times, are believed to be some sort of hierarchical indication, as larger, stronger-looking sirins almost always have more visible stripes; children normally have only four or so.

It is known that sirins consist of dozens of different tribal groups spread out across the mountains of North Suribia, and it is known that these tribes sometimes war with each other. They may fight over sacred ground, breeding rights, or valuable hunting lands, though the few sirin homes that have been found by humans have been dark caves, as they do not seem to need or want fire.

Sirins have their own language which appears to consist of disyllabic words. Even the disyllabic word "si-rin" is allegedly what they call themselves, according to Oussa legends. Because of certain pronounced teeth, they seem to not use sounds like p, b, l, and m.