|Changeling huntresses in ritual blood feud garb.|
In recent years, these semi-urban changelings have also become indelibly associated with organized crime, as many individuals have become enforcers for the Cherskii mafia and other groups. While most urban changelings are, of course, reasonably honest, regular folks, this association has brought mistrust upon them as well.
• The jann (also occasionally spelled djann, jinn or djinn) come from far across the sea to the east. Having surpressed much of the genuine historical information of their origins, much of what is believed about where they came from has grown rather fanciful in the generations since their arrival on the shores of Qattara many generations ago. It is reasonably certain that they did in fact come from across the sea, although to anyone's knowledge, no one has returned the other way successfully, and no one has repeated the feat. In the legendry of the jann themselves, they come from a mighty Empire far to the east, made up entirely of jann, and they are merely a group fleeing oppression. Or perhaps blown off course accidentally and driven, by the grace of the Gods, to establish their new empire in these fertile new lands. Here, the jann are the minority aristocratic ruling class of the nation of Qizmir--where they are far outnumbered by their human subjects, who are of stranzero descent. Throughout Qizmir itself, the language, customs, dress, cuisine, architecture and culture of the jann is ascendent, and many humans are simply Qizmiri by now, with little or no recollection of their stranzero past, but the nation also continues to struggle with nationalistic pride of the stranzeros, who have not gone under the yoke--however light it tends to be in most cases--of the jann quietly.
|Sarabascan jann, showing multicultural influences.|
The jann claim to be descended in part from the ifrit from the City of Brass. This certainly jives with their appearance--the standard jann has brick-red skin, and pale, wispy blond hair that occasionally dances around their head like an open flame. Bright yellow eyes, and tall willowy stature complete the image. There is also an uncommon, although not extraordinarily so variant on this appearance; sooty black or gray skin, with--again--flame-colored eyes and bright orange hair. The appearance of this variation does not appear to be genetic, as it crops up from time to time amongst all lines of jann. The jann in Qizmir have developed a social stigma against intermarriage with non-jann, but expatriat jann in places like Porto Liure or Sarabasca, or even on the Golden Peninsula who have married humans report that the jann bloodlines seems to be reasonably strong; better than half of all children born to such unions are themselves jann in every way, and even non-jann children can themselves give birth to jann children on occasion.
Many hamazin scholars see the jann as merely another variant on their same hellspawn race that has bred true, much as they have. The jann find this claim offensive. Many scholars in neutral areas, such as Terrasa, find that the claims are not necessarily unlikely after all; although the jann, probably by dint of their foreign origin compared to other hellspawn in the Three Empires region, are significantly different than other hellspawn even so. Although when a jann (or a hellspawn) marries a human, the offspring of such a union are either jann (or hellspawn) or human, on the rare occasions when a jann and a hellspawn have married and born children, they have been known to be hybrids, with features from both parents, which is unusual, and often used as evidence by those who point to a distant unity between the two races.
• Hamazin are the former overlords of the Baal Hamazi empire, a polity which no longer exists. Nonetheless, in the city-states that now make up that region, hamazin are still fairly common, and play an important role in the population--in many cases still enjoying a shadowy reflection of their former priviledged status. That said, after the fall of Baal Hamazi, and in the chaos that ensued, many hamazin have fled their ancestral lands, and they are now quite common in the south, particularly in places like Porto Liure and Sarabasca, but in all of the Terrasan cities there are sizeable minorities of them. Some still nurse dreams of reviving their ancient empire--in fact, the Cherskii mafia was founded on the principle of exploiting organized crime to develop resources and capital for just such a takeover of the fractuous city-states that still claim a portion of the mantle of Baal Hamazi. Most, however, simply live their lives as they are, without being dazzled by dreams of the past. Some, in fact, have specifically turned their backs on imperial dreams, and want nothing to do with such ambitions.
• While the hamazin are a true-breeding "race", they are also seen as a subset of the hellspawn, humans touched by the power (or seed) of some ancient god or demon. The hamazin outnumber the other hellspawn by considerable margins, but the existance of other hellspawn is still well-known to most people in the Three Empires region. Curiously, the birth of a hellspawn appears to be random and unpredictable, and what causes one to be born are mysterious. Curiously, some even claim that one can be corrupted into this state from being human, although there are no such documented cases (with the possible exception of the semi-mythical Hutran Kutir, the founder of Baal Hamazi.) Also called darklings, tieflings, teuflings, and diablings and other names besides, the hellspawn often have a difficult life, as they are often mistrusted. This causes many of them to turn to a life of crime to support themselves--which perpetuates the cycle of mistrust.
There is no common physical appearance for non-hamazin hellspawn. All look more or less human, but have some feature that sets them apart and serves as a sign of their infernal corruption--small horns, a thin tail, unusual skin tones, scales, a forked tongue, etc. Hellspawn are not common in any part of the Three Empires setting, but are uncommon everywhere. Many hamazin see them as long-lost cousins of a sort, or kindred spirits, but in reality, few hellspawn have much in common with the hamazin, having no history or link to powerful polities of the past, or thriving city-states of today.