Mandeans are one of the seven original humanoid species. Hear it pronounced.
Mandeans are amphibious humanoids. On land, they can breathe through their skins instead of lungs but that requires their skin to be moist. They do not have scales as some believe, but their skin is poisonous to consume. They feel weather, pressure, and temperature changes; they can predict storms. They are cold-blooded. Their metabolic rate is slow.
Salt water mandeans are called oceanic while fresh water are called river mandeans. Those who can breathe in both are called hydeans, as in hybrid mandeans.
Mandeans understand things that don’t rely heavily upon social manipulations and subtleties. They don’t think about serious matters. Mandeans have strength, an excellent constitution, and good agility, doing flips and twists when diving or in battle. Their dexterity is average but they are quick with their hands; otherwise, they’d never catch fish. Mandeans are sometimes unaware of their danger and can seem brave in the face of it, but when a threat is known, they can assess their chances and make a wise decision.
The oval head of mandeans has a round chin and light cheekbones. Large, indigo eyes see well in low light but are easily blinded in bright sun when ashore; widely spaced, they have a nictitating membrane. Hair is most often black and short. Ears are flattened against the head but can be swiveled outward. Their fish diet results in triangular, serrated teeth. Mandeans have a foot long, muscular tongue.
Mandeans are slightly taller than most humans and have a sturdy, solid build, with large bones and solid muscle. Their feet are broad and flat to aid in swimming, their toes webbed. A powerful lower body propels them through water in an undulating swim reminiscent of fish, their legs locked together. They have a small waist, lean stomach, broad chest and shoulder girdle, and powerful arms. Their large hands have webbed fingers topped by sharp talons to spear and hold fish. Necks have four gills on each side. Most mandeans have blue or green backs and white or light blue fronts.
Bioluminescence is used to attract mates, communicate, disguise themselves, warn others, and for defense, as mandeans can emit a bioluminescent cloud to distract predators. They are often nude except for a belt, loin cloth, or vest, but will don robes in joint settlements to protect their skin, which is sensitive to sunlight; the clothing can help regulate body temperature. They may wear slippers on their feet for better traction.
Mandeans live in salt or fresh water and sometimes follow a river to its source, living in mountain and subterranean lakes. Mandeans prefer warmer climates, are less frequently found north/south of the 45th latitude, and dislike dry heat or very hot days. When they have a habitat ashore, it is often cliffs or caves. They are not fond of forests due to hidden threats.
Underwater settlements have great ecosystems like a coral reef and feature buildings with a sharply sloped roof and dry areas, known as water voids, to allow visits by other species. In joint land settlements on land, mandeans are seldom long-term residents unless it’s a port town and there’s a mandean quarter at the coast. Some places have mandean wells: large, cavernous buildings leading to deep water holes and rivers or underground lakes.
Mandeans focus on spells involving the sea and life in it, such as controlling sea creatures. They excel at anything manipulating water. They can call animals to them. Most spells are defensive and designed to protect them while ashore, including detecting threats before emerging. They can also purify salt water to fresh water; any mandean magician can perform this valender and the one to give someone the ability to breathe underwater, to save who are those drowning.
All species acknowledge Llurien’s twenty-eight gods. The four gods of the indigo sphere created mandeans and heavily influence their outlook.
Krisira, Goddess of Innocence, Hope, Naivety, Spring, Birth, Dawn, and Marriage
Krisira inspires open-minded innocence. Mandeans assume the best of other’s words and actions. Cruelty, domination, and strategic thinking are alien to them except for hunting for food. They prefer their own kind, karelia, kryll, querra, and morkais, being wary of humans and the other species and races who’ve attacked them in the past.
Fjora, Goddess of Passion, Love, Conviction, Devotion, Lust
Fjora inspires their unabashed love of the sea and all its creatures. Their devotion to each other is strengthened by solidarity and a confidence in each other’s good will. Innocence keeps their ideas pure and strong. They’re passionate, devoted lovers who commit to their mate early. They will grieve for the remainder of their lives for a dead mate or child.
Lierein, God of Expression, Art, Song, Music, Eloquence, Poetry
Lierein’s influence causes the beautiful mandean songs. Their lyrics and poems are deeply romantic. Their expressiveness is evident in facial movements and body language, their innocence preventing them from hiding these. They are great artists and talented musicians.
Vylorn, God of Unity, Solidarity, Water, Waves, Sea Winds
Vylorn inspires mandeans to live in pods and work as one toward common goals, whether this is hunting, defending their territory, raising children, or building homes. Each may have a different role, but they see these as part of a bigger pattern.
Mandean society is dominated by unity. They share and sacrifice for each other without jealousy or resentment. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. Social standing is not recognized except for a minimal amount needed to govern, and these roles are only acknowledged when needed. Mandeans have no written language and cannot read or write. They’ve learned to speak other languages, mostly Antarian. All mandeans know their finger language, called the “Mandean Hand.” Other species typically communicate with them this way.
They use a spear or trident, which can be thrown, but their accuracy suffers from lack of practice on land, where slings are also used to chase away threats on shore or in the sky, or aid those on shore who are already under attack. If jhaikan or riven are ashore, mandeans will not leave the water unless there’s a worse threat below.
Mandeans will use teeth and talons if disarmed. They can also spray water with great force and accuracy, distracting opponents and then fleeing. Mandeans can also use the knives they carry for prying open shells. Mandeans do not drown anyone except jhaikan. They do not fight amongst themselves, unless the race of kadeans are attacking mandeans.