Knumari, Masters of Water and Clay

“Thus sang the Potter at his task
Beneath the blossoming hawthorn-tree,
While o’er his features, like a mask,
The quilted sunshine and leaf-shade
Moved, as the boughs above him swayed,
And clothed him, till he seemed to be
A figure woven in tapestry,
So sumptuously was he arrayed
In that magnificent attire
Of sable tissue flaked with fire.
Like a magician he appeared,
A conjurer without book or beard;
And while he plied his magic art–
For it was magical to me–
I stood in silence and apart,
And wondered more and more to see
That shapeless, lifeless mass of clay
Rise up to meet the master’s hand,
And now contract and now expand,
And even his slightest touch obey”

-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Keramos

Playtest Version

This material is still in the process of being playtested. It is fully usable as written, but may be refined or changed in later versions. As always, this content should only be used with GM permission.

The Knumari

The knumari resemble humanoid sheep. They have short, lightweight wool in colors ranging from off-white to tan to black, but they often pigment patterns in their wool using orange or brown or gray ground clay or black with silt or charcoal. Regardless of sex, they all have large, distinctive curling horns that form various unique shapes. Knumari settle almost exclusively on the shores of rivers and their cultural practices revolve around these waters and their seasonal cycles. Occasionally explorers and adventurers will venture far from their rivers but even for trade they utilize these waterways for transport rather than using land caravans.

River of Life

The patron deity of the knumari rules the cycles of flooding that brings fertile soil downriver every spring, which allows river valleys to be verdant homes for cities even in desert regions. Many knumari are essentially nomads, living on flotillas of barges that they move up and down their river as needed, but others found cities surrounded by expansive irrigation systems for agriculture. Most knumari learn to swim before they can walk. Even within cities, their temples are usually either built up out of the river or on barges tethered extensively to the dockside.

Dedicants of the Divine Potter

Knumari legend says their god, titled The Lord of Innundations, also invented pottery and, in fact, formed the knumari from the holy clay, silt, and water of the River of Life in his divine realm. Their clerics teach that he crafted them so perfectly that they immediately became flesh and blood creatures as soon as he finished sculpting the final details. Knumari retain a small spark of this ability, and with the right preparations can craft tiny almost-living constructs from clay. Knumari magic users generally show a talent for the elements of water and earth, and their cities often have golems and other constructs supplementing the city guard’s forces.

Knumari Names

A knumari’s full name typically takes the form of [personal name], [son/daughter/child] of [father’s name], whose mother is [mother’s name], but in cases of an unknown or particularly disfavored parent or grandparent, the other parent is used. In other cases an occupational or other sort of byname might be adopted instead of using lineage.

Example Masculine Names: Akalamdug, Artakhshathra, Darayavahush, Djedknumiufankh, Ekur, Kambujiya, Mesanepada, Nakht, Narseh, Pasherknum, Sama’at, Shulgi, Tamasp, Udjaif, Ur-Nammu
Example Feminine Names: Ameretat, Aristomake, Berekhet, Elissa, Daniat, Enanatuma, Haurvatat, Iset, Ninbanda, Peset, Roshanak, Shub-ad, Sophonisba, Tachenef, Tayarew
Example Unisex Names: Heriu, Ibi, Joba, Kebra, Khurshid, Nemester, Neskhnum, Nether, Sechautawetey, Sedjemniykhnum, Zula

New Species: Knumari

    Common Personality Traits: Creative, detail oriented, methodical
    Common Physical Traits: Large curling horns, artificially patterned wool, mud-caked
    Type: Medium biped folk with a Reach of 1. Your maximum wounds equal your Constitution score.

  • Attributes:
  • Base Speed: 30 ft.
  • Craft Ushabti: You gain the Followers feat. The followers you gain from this feat must have the Elemental type.
  • Inquisitive Mind: You gain 2 additional Interests (see FC, page 61).
  • Mark of Clay: Choose either the Path of Earth or the Path of Water (See FC, page 312-314). You take the first step on the chosen path. Your Caster Level is considered equal to you Career Level for your abilities from these steps. When you would gain a feat from your Career Level you may instead take another step along the chosen path if after selecting class abilities your step will be no greater than step II at Career Level 3, step III at level 5, step IV at level 7, or step V at level 9.
  • Natural Attack: You gain the Gore I natural attack (see FC, page 235). If you gain a natural attack from multiple sources, the attack’s grade becomes equal to the highest single grade + 1 per additional benefit granting the same attack, to a maximum of V (e.g. Bite IV, Bite III, and Bite I become Bite V).
  • Delicate: It takes one less grade of Fatigued or Shaken to render you unconscious.

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