Tiyanaks (also known as meadow people) are an ancient, secretive race of short humanoids who live in subterranean villages under meadows and paddy fields. Despite their small stature, there is nothing childlike about them. They can grow very old, capable of living for hundreds of years. Tiyanaks are sometimes mistaken for ghosts or mischievous spirits of the earth. Sadly, most Tiyanak were forced into slavery by the Phanarien humans five decades ago. Since then, many Tiyanak withdrew into the underground and sealed off their tunnels. The majority of Langundowi's human population do not even remember they exist.

Tiyanak are intuitive, instinctive and empathic. Their empathy allows them to predict what will happen before it actually happens. They like to do anything as long as it is with people they like. They believe that everyone is inherently good. Tiyanaks are revered as elders with the knowledge of the secrets of earth. They are usually welcome in cultures that respect spirituality, learning and wisdom. In some humanoid societies they can be found tutoring the younger generations. Tiyanaks carve much of their history onto stones and pile them up to form entire walls. Such stones can be found all over Langundowi.

The Tiyanaks do not attack, only counter-attack. They are truly masters of evading enemies using exhaustion and redirection, preferring fighting techniques that causes little to no permanent harm. Tiyanaks often seek to frustrate their opponents, turning a foe against itself.

Tiyanaks stand about 3 feet tall (see the rules for Small Heroes in Chapter One of True20) and weigh about 30 pounds. They have flat noses, wide mouths filled with small pointed teeth, pale skin, sharp claws, and short legs. They move with an almost cat-like grace. Their ears are large and winglike and black hair covers their head, usually tied in a topknot or braided. Perhaps the most striking feature of the Tiyanak is that their eyes remain constantly a glow, giving off an ambient orange light. This helps them find each other in the gloomy underground tunnels they have adapted to. They do not need to blink to keep their eyes lubricated, which has given rise to the notion that that they don't blink at all. Tiyanaks shun bright coloured clothing, preferring more earthly tones. They speak their own language, called Tiyanaki.

Tiyanak Society

Tiyanak mythology dictates that all living and non-living things have a katori, which means roughly "spirit" or "life force". Because the katori are fickle and unpredictable, Tiyanaks make sure not to upset these unseen forces. If someone speaks loudly or shouts in a forest without reason then the katori would become upset, causing misfortune or making them ill. They rely on shamans, special people chosen by the vaki to mediate with them and make sure they follow the way of the ancients. Of all the katori, Allamalatti, the Spirit Queen is the greatest. Other important katori include Elluwak the Sky Father, Nahiwi the River Daughter and Nihillowen the Ruler of the Land of the Dead.

Game Information

Tiyanak Background Traits: Tiyanak possess the following background traits.
—Ability Adjustments: +1 Dexterity, +1 Intelligence, –1 Strength, –1 Constitution
—Size: Small
—Bonus Feats: Night Vision, Taunt
—Mimicry: A tiyanak can imitate the sounds of almost any animal or humanoid. A listener must succeed on a Difficulty 20 Notice check to detect the ruse. The Difficulty check is Charisma-based.
—Natural Weapon: Tiyanak can attack with their claws and teeth, causing +1 damage plus Strength with a successful unarmed attack.
—Favoured Feats: Choose one supernatural power (Treat total level as adept for this power)

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