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Duruds

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 3 months ago

Back to Professions

Duruds

 


 

Though The Last Ones are distinctly atypical of Minotaur (by the standards of The Mainworld, there is nothing more odd, unique, curious, disgusting, fascinating (etc) than their holy avatars, the Duruds.

 

Origin of Durudism

 

In accordance with their interpretation of Minotaur Cosmology, The Last Ones abandoned the ways of the forgettening and the path of the Shaman in order to pursue knowledge. This led to the development of the... well... unique field of study that is Minotaur Technology. However, as the great bipedal bovines increased the relative sharpness of their minds they nonetheless felt a great emptiness within. Their scientific and scholarly pursuits often turned out to be fruitless, erroneous... or simply without meaning. They had lost something truly visceral that called to them.

 

The four stomachs of a Minotaur are a great asset to them, allowing them to digest even the most rough and unpalatable of plant materials. However, their ability in digestion does not end there, for any material that enters their stomachs becomes digested to the point of absorbtion, with often dramatic results. Perhaps the best-known example of this is Bloodlustiness. The drinking of blood can turn even the most passive of Minotaur into a hooved slaughterhouse bent on the destruction of anything in its path.

 

Naturally, the inquisitive minds of the most intelligent of The Last Ones began to wonder: "Much can be gained by drinking blood, something that we would normally never eat. What if we ate... other things that we're not supposed to eat?" This simple question would evolve over time into the most serious of spiritual searches for true knowledge.

 

Durudic Philosophy and Practice

 

Duruds provide the link with nature that is vital to the meaningful existence of the Minotaur. They have an intimate knowledge and understanding of the plants and animals of Zonardia, and are connected deeply to the changing seasons and the transformations of the ever-shifting landscape. At first, they sound much like a Shaman. But their power comes not from forgetfullness, communion with Mighty Taur, nor even the power of their Herd. The power of the Durud lies first and foremost with eating.

 

When a young member of The Last Ones seems to be both serious of mind, pure of heart, and great of appetite, he is apprenticed to an Eldar Durud, and immediately taught the core tenets of his people's faith, known as The Four Stomachs of Truth

 

  • The First: True Knowledge can only be found Within. All Minotaur come from the stomach of Gaia. We must use our own to probe the deepest meanings of our existence.
  • The Second: What is Within comes through the Mouth. Eating is the sacred means by which we bring the universe within us.
  • The Third: To Eat is to Understand. Only within the stomachs is the true nature of things revealed.
  • The Fourth: Understanding is the Path to Enlightenment." We solemnly vow to eat all things, so that we may help all things.

 

Zonardian Sociologists have described Durudic practice as somewhat of a "cross between an ascetic pilgrimage, pantheistic animism, and an eating contest." A Durud spends most of his life wandering throughout Zonardia, consuming as much of what he comes across as possible, so as to increase his innate knowledge (and occasionally gain extraordinary powers).

 

Role in Minotaur Society

 

Though much time is spent wandering, a Durud cannot forget the primacy of his mission to help his fellow Minotaur. On those occasions when his wandering brings him near the Herd, he has many special roles to play (many of which replace those that were previously fulfilled by a Shaman).

 

Everyday Events

  • Naming -- The innate power of the Durud to understand the fate of a calf comes into play during naming. The Durud looks for the signs of the things he has eaten in the young one (usually by eating some of their hair), and names the calf appropriately. Depending upon what sort of eating-induced state the Durud happens to be in, a calf might end up with a name of great clarity and specificity, like "Branchweaver" or something more abstract, like "Muuu'BLUUURGH".
  • Healing -- If a Minotaur is stricken with disease, a durud consumes a concoction consisting primarily of the patient's urine and the grindings of their hoof or horn. Then, the Durud understands their sickness and can treat them with the appropriate materials that are known to him (meaning: stuff he has eaten). It is considered extremely rude to fake being sick just to get a Durud to drink your urine... and is also quite unwise because they can tell if you're faking.
  • Rites of Passage -- The Durud is integral in helping his people during times of birth, marriage, and death. For example, during a Minotaur Funeral, the Durud goes under a trance induced by the bone marrow of the deceased, and leads them up to the heavens to join the Sky Herd. It is often joked that the Sky Herd must collectively be "a few bones short."

 

Science and Knowledge

  • Herbalism -- The Durud is quite naturally the foremost expert on the plant world, and usually carefully preserves the plants he eats in his travels between the pages of a large book. Unfortunately, this field of study plods along quite slowly, as most Duruds consume their Tomes of the Durud during unexpected fits of Munchiness.
  • Engineering -- A great many inventions in the field of Minotaur Technology have originated with Duruds. This is not to say that Duruds actually design or build said technology, they mostly draw upon their vast knowledge to envision the future of "MinoTech". For example, a great advancement was made when the Eldar Durud Dunghoof mused to a group of engineers: "What if... like... there was a cart that pushed you? Y'know?"
  • Communications -- A Durud knows the language of all plants and creatures known to him, and is thus able to tell his fellow Minotaur a great deal about them, and how to know when the grass is right to eat, when that bear is really mad at you, what kind of mud is best for bricks, etc. Communication with the spirit world, however, is seen as one of the heights of scientific inquiry, and in this field the Durud is unmatched. Often, the plants, animals, and minerals he consumes will put him in touch with powers and forces unknown to his kinfolk.

 

War

  • Bloodlustiness -- A Durud knows the blood of many creatures, and is a valuable asset in times of war. A skilled Durud knows what blood is best for ranged units, cavalry, infantry, etc. And the Durud himself, due to his great experience with and conditioning to the states of blood-induced fury... is a force of nature all unto himself upon the field, his oft-horrific appearance matched only by how fucking crazy he's willing to make himself.
  • Shapeshifting -- the manipuation of his own form is considered to be the hallmark of the Durud (or at the very least what makes him stick out like a sore thumb). A Durud in times of need may consume a part of his stash that allows him to shift his shape into one of his animal friends, or (if particularly daring) some abominable combination of animals... that he hopefully can shift out of at some point.
  • Shouting -- A Durud's shouts are said to be able to strike fear into the enemy, breathe vitality into his allies, or be an agent of extreme sonic impact or chemical lethality. It's hard to know what to expect when you see a Durud getting ready to let it fly.

 

Appearance

 

One might expect that wandering around in the wilderness for months at a time eating anything in his way would give Duruds a somewhat wild or primal appearance. In fact, this is only the tip of the iceberg.

 

It is common for eating to bring about physical changes in the body of a Durud that can last anywhere from minutes to years. The risky diet of Durudic practices tends to lead to massive and sometimes frightening deformities (aside from the chronic "Durud Gut" caused by swelling of the ruminant stomachs). For example... the Eldar Durud Dunghoof was described as standing over eleven feet tall, having bony protrusions as well as mushrooms growing through his shaggy mane, great moose antlers sprouting from his head, long gorilla-like arms and red glowing eyes that shown above a maw of sharp, black-stained teeth.

 

Duruds often experience significant mental or psychological effects from their spiritual consumption, and are said to often exhibit strange speech or behavior patterns to match their strange appearance.

 

The Great Reseating

During this great world-changing event in the year 35,700 Duruds were among the only Minotaur to venture to the Mainworld, mostly to see what there was to eat. The rest of the Zonaridian Minotaur, particularly their top Astronomolists and Sciencemanceters believed that what awaited was only a hellish barren wasteland. Ambitious (but mostly hungry) Duruds like Dunghoof and Mruh made the pilgrimage to the Mainworld in order to further their knowledge and spread the understanding of the universe to other beings who might not know the ways of the Durud.

 

They were surprised not only to discover that the Mainworld had not been destroyed by the wrath of Massive Cowfall, but that Minotaur still lived upon it... though they seemed a bit dazed and stupid, save for the brightest of their Shaman and Chieftains. The Duruds heralded a brief though significant new age, during which a few of the Great Herds embraced the ways of Durudism and Minotaur Technology. The bovine giants rose and flexed their shaggy muscles against many a foul dog-like enemy, most notably the Quilp, whose slaughter of cows had long been considered a great scourge upon the Plains (See Elemenstorlance: The Book of Fallen Skies)

 

The Eldar Durud Dunghoof also discovered that Dim Elves (partially due to a previously-undiagnosed physical feature, multiple stomachs) had an innate knack for the practice of Durudism. This knack had been essentially undiscovered for tens of thousands of years due to the fact that the Dim Elf diet is so incredibly bland and unadventurous. Dunghoof ordained many Dim Elves as Duruds, which formed a great bond between the two races until the End of Days... which, in the grand scheme of things, wasn't very long at all.

 

Dim Elves didn't necessarily make the best of Duruds. Their total lack of Epic behavior didn't always lend itself to, say, eating a bundle of Heartwood branches washed down with Cockatrice blood just to see what happens. But more importantly, due to their relatively small stature and thin dermal tissues, they were quite susceptible to particularly nasty side-effects to spiritual consumption, including massive gastrointestinal distress... followed by exploding. Regardless, the Duruds of the Dim Elves became a powerful force to be reckoned with, and gave great stength to the Minotaur, particularly during the Siege of Quilpopolis. Even so... they were still Dim Elves, and their alliance with Minotaur became yet another reason for the rest of the Elves to sneer at them, reclassify them as Sly Elves, or just continue to be jerks to them.

 

The most famous of Dim Elf Duruds was the ferocious Wildmane, first of the Dire Dim Elf Duruds, and one of the only Dim Elves (or Sly Elves, depending upon your view) to ever make an indelible mark upon the smirking face of history.

 

Durudic Plant Interactions

Most of the plant effects listed below are of a temporary nature, but can last anywhere from hours to years depending upon the amount eaten.

Plant NamePhysical EffectsMental EffectsPowers/Abilities
Blueball BellsAbdominal swellingVigorous AlivenessMild Life Elemenstation
Burning BushRapid Hair GrowthMeditativeness, Hearing voicesTemporary Water Elemenstation
ChickentreeFeathersAnxietyAvian communications
DeadwoodShedding, SpasmsTemporary SiezuresTemporary Death Elemenstation
Explosive Swampgas CabbageGlowing EyesHallucinationsFire Elemenstation
FauxthornSpiky/Thorny Growths/HornsAnger, HostilityPower to command roots/vines
FireflowersWhite/Orange FurUncontrollable GigglingThrowing Fireballs
Long-Term Commitment FernAbdominal SwellingDepressionIncreased Size
Mace TulipLarge Hands/HoovesAgressivenessStronger bones/hooves/hair
RockflowerThickened SkullStupor, ClumsinessTeleportation
Suggestive Coconut TreeExtra HornsAggressiveIncreased Stamina
Tame BearsBlurred VisionHyperactivityIncreased Speed, Strength
Telltale TreeFatiguePensiveness, WistfulnessIncreased Intelligence
WigglyfernSymbiotic Plant GrowthsAttention DefecitsLatent Stream Elemenstation
Xmas TreeAntlersFestiveness, JollinessStealth, Agility
Zonardian Flying FungusIncreased SizeStrong IntuitionLevitation
Zonardian Giant MushroomSymbiotic Fungal GrowthEuphoriaPlant Communications

 

 

asuraFound plant interactions. Will add meat/blood chart later.

Comments (2)

Anonymous said

at 2:00 am on Aug 5, 2006

Awesome. Gotta love those crazy minotaurs.

Tim said

at 5:23 pm on Aug 10, 2006

nice use of "sly elves"

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