Atia (ey-tee-ah) are a tall, slight race with a great affinity for the Magical Arcs. They are an ancient race whose history is shrouded in mystery and sorrow. Their empire of Malreri has long since been destroyed and the atia live as nomads or oddballs among human societies. Despite their frailty, their kinship with magic can make them powerful adversaries.
On average, atia stand slightly taller than humans at 6'-6-6” in height. They seem somewhat alien in appearance, as their tall frame, exaggerated still by their slight build, is further put out of proportion by their strange features. Though humanoid, their craniums, eyes, and ears are all larger then they ought to be, whereas their noses and mouths are often small, modest features. Both sexes are completely bald; there has never been a known case of an atia ever having any body hair.
Deep in their past, the atia committed a terrible sin which only a few remember in modern day Iiosia, and the atia who are aware of it are always more humble than most. It was the atia who summoned forth the first demons into the world and set about the events which would lead to the destruction of not only their own civilisation but also changed the face of the world forever more. They also created the husks; zombified humans that were used as slaves for the atian empire, centuries ago. This is a fact that most atia strive to keep to themselves, for fear of reprisal.
Despite their strange appearance, though, they are largely welcomed throughout the human realms of Iiosia. Atia are masters of magic and can provide healing and protection to those who need it, and the atia’s keen intellect is often sought after by people who have troubles to discuss. Because of these traits, it is not uncommon to find an atia acting as a wise man, alchemist, healer, or a combination of these in human settlements.
They are most widely found within Oun, where many of their number drifted to once their empire collapsed. When encountering the humans there, the atia aided them in developing technologies and skills, such as irrigation, more advanced architecture, writing and arithmetic. Whether this was an attempt to atone for past sins, or to appease the tribesmen so they became allies, is not entirely certain. Nonetheless, it did lead to the atia becoming greatly respected among the humans of Oun, where they often hold positions of authority as judges, counsellors, and ambassadors.
Elsewhere, atian people are often found as owners of magic shops, alchemists, and libraries and the like. Still, not all atia settle for the quiet life making potions and giving advice. Having no homeland of their own, many atia find that they cannot settle for long in one place, and as such it is not uncommon to find them acting as a mage within adventuring parties or hiring themselves as battle wizards to any leader wishing to supplement his forces with magic, be they bandit, militia, or mercenary.
Atia, despite their vulnerabilities, often regard themselves as superior to other races due to their greater intellects. As one atian proverb goes: “Resilience is a trait shared among dwarfs, grellkin, and rocks.” Yet they are not so arrogant to state this opinion often.
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