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THE SKAVIKᛏᚺᛖ ᚲᛚᚨᚾ ᛟᚠ ᛊᚲᚨᚢᛁᚲ THE SKAVIK CLAN “Nothing to lose, nothing to fear. Oh men o’ mine, a new era is here” - Egil Ormsson BACKGROUND The Skavik are a clan of fearless warriors, descending from simple farmers, woodcutters and fishermen. They stumbled upon this prosperous land as a result of their motherland’s deterioration, later described as “The Fall of Skavia”. Their fishing rivers turned to ice and their thriving farmland was touched by permafrost after a seemingly-endless blizzard took over their land by storm. This horrible event forced The Skavik to mount their longships and head for different shores. CULTURES & TRADITIONS The men and women of Skavia are naturally superstitious, and hold their traditions with very high regard. Both urban myths and legends play a heavy hand in their culture, stories and tales of fantasy passed from grandfather, to father, to son, moving in perpetuity throughout each newborn generation. Curses and prophecies are often used to explain the unexplainable. Alongside these stories of the past, knowledge of the blade is highly respected amongst the Skavik people, and even tightly winds into the religion of the northern-blooded flock. ᛊᚨᚷᚨ ᛊᛏᛖᛖᛚ SAGA STEEL [!] Arne Egilsson duking it out with a peasant over 5 pieces of gold and an egg. The men and women of the Skavik clan are known for their ferocity in battle, but many a foe of the foreign warmongers have noted that these northern warriors tend to carry a secondary, continuously sheathed blade during their raids of whichever capital has caught their eye. This weapon, amongst the Skavik people, is known as ‘Saga Steel’. It is an ornamental weapon which almost never leaves the sheath that houses it, and only does so when a moment is of great importance. This blade is engraved with runic lettering, and sometimes even colourfully painted. It most commonly tells of the momentous achievements of the one who wields it. It is believed among Skavik that if they die in battle with their Saga Steel in hand, it can be used as proof of their stories in the afterlife upon reaching the Hall of The Fallen. Yet if the Skavik receives a proper funeral without the ornamental blade present, their legacy will vanish from the mind of even their closest of friends. Hence it is of utmost importance that the blade is retrieved from the battlefield alongside the body of the fallen Skavik. Reclaiming a long-lost, stolen Saga Steel for an old, deceased friend is seen as the greatest act of kindness and respect imaginable within Skavik culture. This tradition is the leading cause for generations worth of blood-grudges. ᚨᚾᚲᛖᛊᛏᛟᚱ ᚨᛖᚷᛁᛊ FOREBEAR’S SHIELD Due to the rapid coming and passing of Skavik life they respect nothing more than veteranism within the clan. Warriors with unbelievable track records are thus sung and written about until there are ears no more. Some Skavik even dedicate months of their time to painting or carving heroic scenes of their favourite kill-collector on considerably large, rectangular shields. These decorated shields are then brought along to major battles to remind their opponents of strictly the fiercest Skavik’s tales. ᛒᛚᛟᛟᛞ ᛈᛁᛏ BLOOD PIT There is a newer tradition amongst Skavik and their kinsman, born out of the untimely demolition of their home and many of their peoples. This tradition is marked by its characteristically esoteric views on the flows of life. In Skavic culture there is an unusual fixation around blood, as it is viewed as the penultimate currency of life. Blood brings life, and is the pure unfiltered essence of one’s being and existence. In every settlement or landing that the Skavic establish in their travels, an oddly shaped bowl is dug from the ground and then, gruesomely in the eyes of other folk, filled with the drained blood of dead Skavic and denizens of Almaris alike. This pit serves two purposes: the first being that it is a depository for the essence of life the Skavik have swiped away from others, and the second being the pit functioning as a way to connect with the ancient ancestry of the Skavic through their life essence. The pit is utilised in two ceremonies: of life and of death. Skaviks, upon coming of age at eighteen, are baptised in the blood of the fallen in the hopes to imbue them with the strength of those who’ve long since passed. ᛏᚺᛖ ᛊᚺᛁᛈ THE SHIP In Skavik culture, being bestowed a ship is the highest honour that one can possibly achieve. Only those who put to death mountains of foes, or prove their mettle in great displays of combat prowess, may be considered for this honour. Once caught in the jaws of death, those Skavik men in the possession of a ship may pass into the greater circle in their afterlife, and if not, are left to suffer as lesser people. It is said that the Skavik man their ships once slain, marking the beginning of a new journey into the outer circle, so long as they also bear proof of their tales in life. This proof is typically submitted through proof within saga steel, which ought to have seen the better half of the Skavik man’s life, likely a sword that has massacred hundreds, or a banner that has planted deep within foreign soil; signs of conquest, and other tales that come with. Not only does a ship grant a superior passage into the afterlife, it is also a show of superiority while living, proving that they are worthy of carrying out raids of their own, and filling their ship with Skavik raiders - to command, conquer and reap. Ships of the Skavik are typically adorned with great wooden carvings, displaying chronicles of the captain, or brandishing legends of Skavik history, and culture. Hundreds of ornamented shields line portside, alongside banners that have been captured, or sown from the tales of yore. Without a ship, one never lived to be truly Skavik, hence to die in battle without a ship, is for you to submit as a lesser - ashes of the man will be scattered in the ocean, and forgotten. ᚠᛟᛖ ᚺᛁᛞᛖ FOE’S HIDE [!] Hjalmar Ivarsson facing his to-be fashion statement piece. The pelts of animals are more than mundane trophies in Skavik Culture. They invoke meaning, and it is rumoured that they bring good fortune, and in some cases - powers. Even for the young, pelts are held in high favour within the Clan, and it is expected that younger teens bring down their first beast before they enter adulthood. They might slay a wildcat, wrapping the moosy pelt around their shoulders and be under the impression of supplementary agility, or extra luck when dice are rolled - after all, cats are willed nine lives. Though, a wildcat will not amass the respect, or desired power of their family, or other clansmen. Only the mighty carry great bear pelts around their shoulders, being empowered with pronounced strength. And only those with wits to catch a wily fox, may don their pelts, and be empowered with intellect. And only those who move like the wind may don the pelt of a slain wolf, whose agility overpowers many - to be empowered with its agility. The greater strength of the animal, dictates the potency of the pelt, and determines the might of its hunter. ᚱᛖᛞ ᚹᛖᛞᛞᛁᛜ RED WEDDING Weddings of Red brings spirit to the clansmen of the Skavik. They are not like other weddings, where two engaged, stand in a dimly lit church, enshrouded by the skewed light of a stained window. No, those of Skavik may only ascend into matrimony at the sacrifice of another. To unite two in engagement, a trophy must be bestowed to a desired partner - it could be a golden chalice, reaped from a bountiful raid, or a looted sword, from a famed warrior. To offer a dull prize is to permanently insult the partner, and turn their heels forever. When engaged however, the tribulations do not halt there, and a red wedding must be planned - a gala that stains the cobbles of cities with blood, and terror. To commend a red wedding, a raid must be pursued on a suitable country, and the Skavik couple must both live till the end, and reign victorious. At the raid’s zenith, the mightiest defender must be captured and brought to the city square, so the ceremony may begin. Vows are exchanged, and pelts are wrapped around the joined hands of the to-be wed. All of this is done as the defender’s head is positioned between cobbles, and the steel boot of the groom, until alas the final vows are uttered and the skull of the defender is cracked under the man’s cold boot. This sacrifice ensures that the unified couple's wedding is sealed by strength, and prosperity - to last, till death do they part. ooc and contact info :