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The Falgin Barbarians

The Falgin:

     There are two main races of barbarians in Gaidrin. The Falgin are the furthest north-western dwelling ones.  They seem to live just beyond the dry tundra-like plains that the Kerk dwell upon.

     The land of the Falgin is made substantially of rolling hills and low mountains.  They have tense relations with Iron Mountain Dwarves, who are in the Iron mountain range directly to the north of the Falgin.  The dwarves feel threatened by the ever spreading population of the Falgin and there have been quite a few skirmishes over the last few years.

     The Falgin are held back from moving further south due to the fact that the Kerk outnumber them two to one.   Finally realizing this, the Falgin have stopped their practices of fighting to the death and their numbers are slowly beginning to grow.

    

Social Structure:

     The Falgin are a stubborn people.  They have been nicknamed the 'Donkeys' by the Kerk and this nickname seems to have stuck.  Though calling a Falgin a donkey to his/her face, is akin to signing your own death warrant and handing your executioner a sword.

     The men and as well, the women, are expected to be more than adequate fighters as well as survivalists.  Adolescents are tested by being taken on horseback, blindfolded, into the wilderness, left buck naked with nothing other than a dull rusty dagger.  They are then expected to forage for food and hunt animals to make clothing as well as making presents for the members of his immediate family.  As soon as all this is done, he is to set off in search for his family group.  If these children never made it back to the camp, they were not (as a general rule)  searched for.  The unfortunate young boys were seen as lacking the very spirit that made a Falgin and it was better that they failed at that time, than when the tribe really had to depend upon them. 

     This practice has only in the last decade allowed women to be tested as well as allowing them into the fighting force.  Also, the children are now given a little more support, having the adults searching for them after 3 weeks has passed.  After all, they were trying to restock their depleted population.  But those rescued were always scorned as lacking and weak.     

     They have a mostly hunter-gatherer society, with very little farming or homesteads and any trading to be done would be through the Kerk or the gnomes on their eastern border.  The Falgins follow the caribou which travel through their country to and from the mountains to the north.  For three months of the year, they live off this animal till they pass beyond the Falgin's borders.  The fact that they can follow no further is the cause of an endless amount of frustration to the Falgins.  

     The Falgin used to rival the Kerk in population and land mass, but the social practice of fighting to the death over disputes ranging from horse thieving to slander, slowly chipped away at their fighting force.  It has only been since their chiefs have joined forces to enforce the dissolution of those outdated laws, that the Falgin's population has begun to rise and push testingly at their borders.

     A man holds territorial rights, which does not necessarily revert to his children upon his death.  A man may even give his territory to someone he sees as deserving, who may not be a relative at all.  If there is no successor named, then the territory goes to the wife. 

     Women can hold title to land, but only the shrewdest and the most determined decide to do so.  A woman's status is largely determined by their husbands or immediate family.  As soon as she becomes a widow, with land and status, she is seen as fair game amongst the landless young men.  While she will not be challenged in combat for the land, she will have a multitude of marriage proposals and widows (young ones most of all) are expected to remarry.  If she remains constant in her desire not to marry, she must tread lightly, because her refusal of all suitors may be seen as a challenge in itself.  A successful woman who holds on to her lands and doesn't concede them to a man, has the diplomatic skills an Essalee would be envious of. 

         The Falgin are expert at persevering when all others would have given up.  Even their stories tell of the almost inhuman persistence that their ancestors had in getting to this land over the mountains and the ice beyond.

    

Physical Characteristics:

     The men and women of the Falgin tend to be very large.   Size ranges from 5'9" to 6'3" for the women and from 5'11" to 6'8" for the men. 

     Their hair is worn free and look to be shaggy manes more suited to a lion.  The men sport long beards, the longer the better.   Both sexes pull their thick, luxuriant hair back into a top knot when travelling, so the length is pulled away from their eyes and they seem even taller. 

     Their skin color is pale, but with none of the delicateness seen in the Essalee's pale skin.  The hair color ranges from a strawberry - blonde to flaming red.  The hue of the eyes is a startling shade of green, brighter than a many faceted emerald.

     Their clothing is mostly made of many layers of leather (caribou) and furs during the winter.  During the summer, the clothing is a light layer of leather or perhaps cloth, to those who were able to trade for it.  The colors range from a light tan to a golden hue of yellow.  The only accessories worn are torques that both men and women wear.

    

 

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