Pirinad

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The Pirinads are a race of dragon/human hybrids who descend from the Pirinasis Praxis Flight dragon flight.

Origins

During the Long Night the dragons of Pirinasis Praxis had to flee Nos Vorm, driven out by Samuel Fate. They settled on the remote round world PRR-2088, where a human civilization had arisen out of mining settlements left there before the Long Night. The humans had regressed to a low industrial level of technology and went to war with the dragons. Outnumbered, the dragons (already a fallen flight) resorted to creating Dredbroods.

Normally, dredbroods are viscous, violent, and above all stupid. This reputation is owed to the way in which most dredbroods are brought up. Since they are raised as soldiers of terror, their birth and upbringing is typically highly abusive. However, even a typical dredbrood is capable of at least human-level intelligence. On PRR-2088, which the dragons had named Praxis were well looked-after by a combination of dragons and human slaves. They trained as a disciplined fighting force and bred in huge numbers. The Pirinasis Praxis Flight also made an interesting departure from tradition and kept all the female dredbrood (which would typically have been slaughtered at birth).

In the great human dragon war, the dragons eventually won out and exterminated most of the humans, save the chosen few they kept as slaves. However, in becoming a fallen flight, Pirinasis could now produce only dredbroods and hellkites, meaning that the generation which had settled on Praxis would be the last. The last full-blooded dragon died out around fourteen hundred years before the start of the New Day.

The remaining population of dredbroods and humans began to intermix. Dredbroods are normally thought to be sterile, however no large population has ever existed for long enough to really test extensively. The presence of both males and females is not known to have happened anywhere else throughout history. Precisely how the society formed is shrouded in myth, as the war had reduced them to an utterly pre-industrial state and no systematic records were kept. What is known is, when the last dragon died, the population of Praxis was made up of a new creature 30% dragon.

The race that would come to be called the Pirinad are bipedal, tailless, and stand upright. They have two arms, two legs, two eyes, two ears, a nose, and a mouth; but exhibit both strong human and draconic traits. Much like dragons, there can be a wide variation in physical appearance, with the usual possible range of feathers, fur, scales, and snake-like skin also including more human skins. They are typically dark in complexion, though lighter variants represent a significant portion of the population; and like dragons a very wide array of skin pigmentations are possible.

History

Pirinad history is based mostly on oral tradition, and the first few hundred years of their existence is subject to a great deal of debate. The essence of the myth is that in the early days when the total number of Pirinads was only in the tens of thousands and genetic compatibility was a serious problem, they broke down into a series of waring tribes which constantly raided each other for mates.

They had no concept at the time of genetic compatibility, nor any notion of infertility. The head of the tribe (whether male or female) would tend to take the most mates, in a bid to produce viable offspring. This in fact further added to the Pirinad population problems, as instead of every member trying to conceive with as many potential mates as possible, you had only a few dominant members (who had a high potential of being themselves sterile) binding as many mates to themselves as possible. Exactly how many tribes existed initially is unknown; but the earliest recorded histories describe thirteen distinct "houses" from which every then-living Pirinad was said to have descended.

By about a thousand years before the New Day, Praxis had largely become a peaceful world on the whole, though violence and fighting were very strong parts of the culture. There were then thirty-seven major houses and dozens of smaller splinter groups, but they had managed to put together a workable enough society to begin advancing technologically. Though their oral histories said that they had not originated on Praxis and that other intelligent life did exist, it still came as something of a shock to them when they developed radio and discovered the next solar system over was inhabited.

From that moment forward, the entire Pirinad civilization was united towards a single goal: travel to that other planet, fight everyone on it, and claim a glorious victory. Many sources disagree, but outside historians believe this was mainly done to avert a civil war. Praxis had many severe social and economic problems at the time, problems they were ill-equipped to resolve internally. By turning their attention on an outside target, they were able to come together in a way that would never have been possible otherwise.

In two hundred years, the Pirinads went from having barely invented radio to building inter-stellar warships. Theorists are divided on how this was possible, with many speculating that technology left over from before the Long Night had to have formed the basis. However, no evidence to support this has been found. The most widely accepted theory is that while no actual technology remained, enough of an understanding of the scientific principle survived that when the Pirinad's did turn their efforts towards research, they were able to advance quickly because they did not first have to overcome incorrect notions or institutionalized dogma.

The Great Crusade as they called it, was hugely successful. They were able to send an army in the tens of millions and capturing the neighboring solar system, which itself was pre-industrial and had a population of only a few hundred million. This began a long series of exploration and expansion; most habitable planets in the region had either small populations or technologically-regressed ones. Samuel Fate was apparently aware of the Pirinads but had not made crushing their resistance a priority.

By the end of the Long Night, the Pirinads controlled 127 star systems and 224 planets, plus hundreds of moons, orbital habitats, and other space-based holdings.

Culture and Religion

The Pirinad are a proud warrior race. Though they have gods in the conventional sense, most of their revered beings are other Pirinads from their mytho-historic record.