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zompist bboard • View topic - An introduction to Ngun culture

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PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 1:54 pm 
Sanci
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Joined: Thu May 01, 2014 12:31 pm
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Location: Murrysville, PA
The Ngun "Revolution"

(All names use the Romanization for Proto-Nggwoó)

Around the year 4100 CCC, Nggwoó (Kwhookhu) was a thriving nation filled with thousands upon thousands of peaceful Batti. In fact, the land became so prosperous that the population increase began to force the Batti to spread outward from their ancestral home. It is against Batti instincts to live in such close quarters. Space for runways diminish, senguú pasture lands shrink, and competition over fishing sites will drive many away from the shores. When population pressures overwhelm them, new Batti families will move to a more remote area at the risk of losing connections with other Batti communities.
Many Nggwoó of the 4100s solved their population problems by moving southeast, inland, to the islands to the north, and the peninsula of Otralyra. Most, however, traveled along the coast to the east and south. Some went further than others, but, due to their poor, at best, navigational skills, they usually never traveled more than a ten miles away from their former homes. Usually.
One group of Batti, however, was different. The called themselves Ngun, which meant "The adventurers" in their language descended from Proto-Nggwoó. They weren't content with these small travels. They desired to adventure. To discover a new land filled with strange animals, plants, and landscapes. They imagined the glory of finding this wonderful land and claiming it for their children and grand-children. At the head of this movement was a Batti named Vòkwh. He held the key to the Ngun revolution, a single compass. It was nothing more than a stick of magnetic metal floating in a bowl of water, but to his followers, it seemed a sure sign of his magical powers. They called it Akūūng, or our guide.
In the year 4024 CCC a group of over a hundred young family groups set off west from the mainland across the ocean they called Nizréjaaci. The Ngun had heard stories of a magical land of plenty that lay to the west. They brought along provisions, building material, and almost one hundred rowboats. They flew by day and rode in the boats by night. The Ngun flew for many days before they reached another shore. At first sight, the Ngun rejoiced, thinking this was their promised land where they could finally rest their weary wings. They were soon met by bitter disappointment. It was nothing more than a small island in the middle of Nizréjaaci. The island didn't even have any large animals that they could hunt to replenish their diminishing food supplies. This island later entered their legends as Qiiwl, which means "traitor."
The Ngun decided to continue to the west on the evening of their second day on Qiiwl. That night they were caught in a sudden hurricane. The only way they survived was by landing on the water and clinging to their flimsy boats. When they storm finally died down after many hours, the Ngun were hundreds of miles off course in the middle of nowhere. When they took stock, they found that they were missing all of their provisions; ten boats; most of their supplies; their sacred compass, Akūūng; and 75 Batti crew members, mostly women and children. Around midday they washed up on the shores of what they assumed was another island. In a last desperate attempt to contain the arising mutiny, Vòkwh sent ten of the least battered Batti to scout the area out to determine if it was just another island. This feeble attempt, however, was not enough to stop the mutiny. The Ngun were angry at their leader for bringing them on this journey that he said would be perfectly safe. Just as they were about to throw Vòkwh into the sea, the scouters suddenly came swooping back into the camp yelling "Ngiipil! Ngiipil!" Ngiipil meant mountains in their native language. The Batti suddenly grew exited. The scouts had seen mountains? This was no island. This must be the promised land, or "Woonguutra," as they called it. With a new found strength, the Batti explored the area and began to build their first settlement. They found that food was in plenty in this land, but there were also dangers as well.
Over the next few months and years the Ngun built a town called Woongun, explored all the way up to the mountains, and discovered and cataloged many new animals and plants. The most notable of these included the drug Fa, a relative of the tamed senguu, a primitive ancestor of Batti, and Kwotra, an animal like a small saber-tooth tiger. It was not till the year 4179 that the Ngun learned that the were on the same continent as the Nggwoo.

Fa

When the Ngun Batti left Nggwoo and arrived at their new home (L5) they discovered many new plants and animals. But there was one plant they had never seen anything like. It was a vine that grew on the ground and in trees. It grew light brown beans on its stem under the leaves all year round. Inside these beans was a yellow spice. Normally Batti do not eat plants, being strictly carnivorous, but in this land they were willing to try anything hat wasn't poisonous. Besides, the Nggwoo frequently added spices to their meat to make the flavor more interesting. However, this spice was different. It was highly addictive.
The Ngun, when they discovered the plant, simply called the plants, the beans, the dust, and the Batti who consumed it, Fa. Fa literally meant "happy." The Ngun had previously drank no alcohol and drugs were used strictly for medicinal purposes. They had no resistance to the power of Fa.
There was more, however, to this spice than simply getting high. The drug had a steroids like effect on the Batti. In a matter of weeks, with daily usage, it caused dramatic muscle growth. In a matter of months, it would actually start to increase the overall size of the addict. At first the Batti were delighted. Not only did Fa make them happy, it made them strong too. But they soon realized that their was a downside. With a year of heavy usage, the Fa could make a three foot tall Batti into an eight foot tall muscleman with a twenty foot wingspan capable of easily tackling a small golem. As you can imagine, despite increased musculature, the Batti soon lost their ability to fly. In fact, after gaining several feet, a Batti would soon have trouble breathing. The Batti could even die from asphyxiation as they rolled like a beached whale if their size increased too much. One way to decrease their size was to stop taking the drug altogether. The other was to sail or fly out to a magical dark spot such as the one at M6. Therefore the Batti had to sustain a dangerous balance too much and not enough to avoid crushing themselves.
Ngun society naturally tended to favor those who could successfully take the drug. Their enormous strength made any Fa Batti a formidable force. The Fa takers that did not die quickly became nobility among the Ngun. Their size allowed them to tackle dangerous natives and large animals that the Batti had previously lived in fear of. When the Ngun discovered that they were living on the same continent as the Nggwoó they traded Fa with them; introducing the Nggwoó to this foreign pleasure.

The Ngun Government

The Nggwoó had little government at the time that the Ngun broke away. They had little conflict and settled disputes personally. When the Ngun came to Woonguutra, they naturally rallied around their spiritual/political guide Vòkwh. As time went on and the original founders, including Vòkwh, died, the Ngun began to form a communal government. Fa strongly influenced the formation of this government. Those that were able to take Fa and not become bloated mounds of flesh became heroes among their fellow citizens. They fended off the new, more dangerous, wild animals, rescued those in need, and helped the weak to build their houses. The Ngun called them "Fa Jangó," meaning Fa Heroes. They naturally assumed a sort of authority in the settlements. Over the following centuries, this government evolved into a complex hierarchical system based on strength, size, and heroic acts. The oppression of those not in nobility grew and grew until, in the year 4569, a revolution overthrew the existing government by using new weapons and transportation technology smuggled from the Nggwoó, which in turn was traded from the Mecongai. This bloody revolution ended in the nobility and the Fa being killed only to be replaced by a new elected democratic senate of sorts. The Fa Batti went from being nobility to being the lowest member of society. It stayed that way until recently, when technological and magical improvements now allow the Fa to grow much, much larger than was previously possible. The Fa Batti are now mostly used as defense and as builders. This system continues into the 56th century, with many improvements and modifications since its inception.

The Ngun Language

The original language of the Ngun was a mixture of dialects found in the, at that time, current language of the Nggwoó, which was known as Qóqàng. It formed into its own distinct dialect/language that was the base of the Ngun language family. Qóqàng had a similar phonology to Proto-Nggwoó, though it allowed some final consonant clusters that Proto-Nggwoó did not and had several more vowels: /ɛ, ʊ, y/. Qóqàng also lost its morphological tone system. The isolation of the Ngun for the first few hundred years meant that their language quickly diverged from its parent. By the year 5500, Qóqàng is a language family containing about twenty different major languages that are spoken all over Otralyra and into northern Lyranis.

Ngun Religion

The Ngun believe Phusrwa brought them into this life and he will bring them back into a new life. He gave them the ability to fly so that they may become the greatest among the thinking kinds. They believe his messengers, the Angkwāā, guide us and protect us from harm in all the days of this life. Those that can listen to the Angkwāā are known as the Luswiī, and are blessed among people. The Ngun believe that the greatest of the Luswiī was Vòkwh. He led them physically into a new life with the guidance of the Angkwāā who came from Phusrwa. Those that follow the guidance of the Luswiī will live a long and happy life.


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