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Naiads (Nai-ADD) are a race of mortal creatures, descendants of Nymphs that lived their lives in the oceans, rivers and all natural water sources across Elysium. Other races that have descended from these ancient Water Nymphs include Oceanids and Nereids. Naiads have a bond and strong connection to water sources, as well as other creatures that can be found in the water. Though, they are more natural as predators than protectors, especially Naiads that live in seas, oceans and other large water sources, commonly sitting at the top or near the top of the food chain.
Long ago, Naiads wasn’t the name for a mortal race, but was the name for the immortal race of Water Nymphs, walking embodiments of the seas and rivers. Through crossing of these creatures with mortal races like Humans, Mages and Elves, today’s common Naiad is what we know it.
It was only in the second age that these mortal races were breed, as means of protection initially, leading to Naiads for example having a strong sense of protectiveness over water sources, just how strong this instinct is being dependent on how much Naiad blood is in the descendant. This can range from wanting to protect the mass that is the ocean itself, to the smallest puddles, ponds and streams that run throughout Elysium. Though, it was in the Third Age when races left and right were being corrupted and forming into dark races like Vampires and Werewolves that are still seen today, that Naiads went into a ‘hiding’ of sorts.
From the third to fifth ages, many Naiads – though freshwater formerly being the dominant place to find them – retreated to the ocean, isolating themselves in its waters. Others remained in the lakes and the inland sources of water. Still others went between inland and outland, traveling mostly in rivers, deltas and the areas that connect the sea to the land. From this ‘Great Separation’ of the race, the Nereids and Oceanids spawned and the once immortal, olden meaning of the Naiad race disappeared for the one used today.
It was toward the end of the Fifth age, around the time of Elvenkind was forced to split, that Naiads again started interacting to a higher level with non-nymph people. It took an even additional century or two after that for the ocean-goers to leave their deep sea and secluded island areas. Though from the ‘Great Separation’, the race is forever splintered, with the various sections of Naiads (As well as those who grew so apart that they became races like Nereids and Oceanids) found in Elysium.
Naiads hold some similarities to humans, but from their time in isolation the various groups grew to adapt to their environments.
Some traits found in all Naiads though, include gills usually located on their necks and scaled skin that can range between tints of green and blue. Usually hair color is reversed from their skin, those with green hair having blue tinted skin and vice versa.
All naiads have yellow or green-ish sclera instead of the white humans would have, and their irises are where it can vary.
Deep sea naiads usually have eyes that are dark blue or green to near black as accustomed for the darkness of the ocean farther down. Naiads that live closer to the surface have a bit wider range of shades of light green, sometimes nearly pure yellow eyes in addition to blues and greens. Though Naiads that are more accustomed with the land and ‘land dwellers’ have the greatest range as result from the race-mixing, some having the very rare colors of gray and hazel.
Other trends include most Naiads having sharp teeth not too dissimilar from a shark. Young Naiads usually gain 3 rows of small teeth that continually grown in a groove of their mouth. It acts almost as a ‘conveyor belt’ of sorts to move teeth forward in new positions. The 4th row of teeth is usually a sign of puberty in naiads, the 5th row marking the end of puberty. Depending on what the Naiad’s diet contains, the shape of the teeth can vary from long, needle like-teeth, to serrated sharp cutting teeth. Mixes of tooth types are not uncommon.
Beyond their teeth, the second main weapon of Naiads are their claws. Claws can extend and retract at will from under the Naiad’s fingernails rather than an extension of said nails and could be forced out if you forced their hands the right way. They tend to be flat and small, but sharp and easily could be used for both slicing and stabbing.
Between a Naiad’s fingers, webbing appears usually during puberty as well as their feet gaining a more flipper-like appearance depending on the Naiad’s environment, this being more common in Ocean-faring Naiads than those in rivers and lakes.
Finally, a feature found mostly in Oceanic Naiads is sharing traits of ocean animals. While not unheard of River and Lake Naiads having fins and such, Oceanic Naiads could grow full on fish-like tails from their backs, extra limbs reminiscent of tentacles and other features. Strangely, these parts could be lost in puberty, children having it more often than grown Naiads. Specific examples include a Naiad who commonly fights sharks growing a tail similar to them as adaption to match and even surpass their speed. Or, a Naiad around stingrays common growing skin between his legs and arms (not too unlike the land’s flying squirrel) to match the stingray’s wings or a stingray-esque tail.
Anatomically, Naiads differ from humans. Naiads have multiple hearts and brains, a feature seen in many sea animals like the octopus, in addition to the main heart and brain. Both the main heart and brain are the strongest. They have two smaller hearts that pump blood through each of their gills, located in the neck area, making that a near fatal weak point for them. The two extra brains are dedicated for magical ability and limb movement. One being located near the main heart and handling the naiad’s abilities in magic and with water, the other controlling limbs like arms and legs as well as any tails, tentacles or extra limbs the Naiad may have. The limb-controlling brain, with lack of extra limbs beyond the arms and legs can shrivel up, leading to loss of ability to gain said extra limbs.
Naiads also have blue blood with hemocyanin instead of the iron-rich hemoglobin found in humans. This allows for easier blood transport in cold and/or low pressure conditions, like the deep sea. However, they lack red blood cells, the hemocyanin simply dissolved in plasma. This gives Naiads a great resistance to blood magic as a result.
Naiads have the uncanny trait of being walking water compasses. You could put one in a desert and they will just be attracted to the nearest water source even if it’s hundreds of miles/kilometers away. They do need water to survive, their body retaining amounts of it to allow them to be on land though. Obviously, the water doesn’t last forever as they excrete it from their skin like sweat or even to form the water into a weapon (depending on how much there is to work with).
Also, Naiads have the potential to be Aquamancers and control water at will. This is common found in Naiads with Mage ancestors, even sometimes spreading into other non-water magics if their magical ancestor wasn’t solely a water mage/aquamancer.
Naiads with Human ancestors still can ‘control’ water, but not at all to the great extent one with a Magical ancestor could, forming weapons out of water, even creating tornedoes of water should they be powerful enough.
The ones with Human ancestors though, have great capacity to move on land and survive outside of their natural watery homes. As well as being the most durable of Naiads, usually surviving on their wits and being the Naiads who are usually proficient in weapons – something that many Naiads would never even think of, using only their claws, teeth and whatever’s around them like stones and kelp.
Naiads with elven ancestors usually hold some similar trait to them, having pointed ears instead of the more fin-like counterpart commonly seen in Naiads. (See Photo). They also tend to be more empathetic and the more omnivorous compared to a Naiad’s usually carnivorous meat and fish diet. They’d survive fine eating nuts, berries and others things found on land or in the sea.
Another trait common more in child Naiads than grown ones is ‘communication’ with the water. They actually communicate with ‘spirits’ that usually represent the water in form of said water or foggy mist as well as communicate with it regardless of form. These spirits often times have personalities just as people and could’ve lived lives as Water Nymphs long before their soul moving on to their current form.
Other various abilities include physical camouflaging by their hair and skin color changing (eyes are the trickiest and usually they have to close their eyes to stay fully hidden) as well as ‘depollution’ abilities. Naiads have the ability to depollute as well as pollute sources of water at will, though it can be a time consuming task obvious. They are simply filters and can only speed it up at the cost of it not being done well. Some send polluted water out as a defense mechanism, like a squid inking everywhere.
There is also an ‘end all’ move Naiads are capable of. It’s known as ‘The Curse of Ondine’. Ondine, in short, was a nymph and minor water goddess who gave up her immortality to be with a man and bear his child but he then cheated on her and she cursed him to stop breathing should he ever fall asleep. As such, should a naiad care greatly for someone and be betrayed by the, they can inflict them with Ondine's curse.
- Nothing of this curse actually forces the person to sleep
- They will simply stop breathing, it will still take the usual amount of time for them to suffocate
- Though they will not be woken up by their lack of breath, someone or something else can wake them up
(This is comparative to the real world CHS respiratory disorder, beyond the three above things, any other questions likely can be answered by looking into that.)
This can only be done once in a Naiad's lifetime.
Strengths and WeaknessesEdit
Naiads are manipulators of water and sea life. Obviously, those with weakness to water should avoid making one angry as their powers tend to be connected a great deal to their emotions as well as water responding to anger, happiness, even sadness at the source. In the same instance, water doesn’t always follow them and can even go against them, holding them back and even fighting the Naiad when there’s good reason to do so. That wouldn’t happen often though.
When it comes to others that control water, Naiads have a very high chance of winning in a contest of that strength alone. Their natural connect to water and the spirits that inhabit the waters renders them to have an unfair advantage over the common water mage. If said mage has the same abilities, it’d go to whoever is the most persuasive.
Naiads know they are strong against those of fire and will react accordingly and sometimes, stupid with pride. They fear those of and who can control, ice, electricity and weather. Ice, for freezing the water. Only bigger water sources can unfreeze themselves, and even that can be a struggle. The ice itself could easily harm the Naiad, their bodies ranging from being 75%-90% water at any time. Electricity is conducive in water, this obviously posing a threat, but not as much as Ice surprisingly. Naiads who descended from electric/lightning mages or have adapted in environments with creatures like electric eels can show resistance to it. Though, they still have a high chance of death. Especially if they’re in a water source – which will likely be the first place a Naiad in danger goes.
Naiads have a rather strange way of aging. From birth, they age mostly based on their mental age and ability. A childish Naiad might stay in a child’s form for decades, while one that matures with ease might go from 6 to 12 in the span of 2-3 years. This is actually an adaptive method, as their body grows with their mind, weening out the Naiads that cannot mentally handle the somewhat struggle that may come with living as a Naiad.
They age this way through to puberty which begins when their body is about that of a 11 to 13-year-old, for both genders. Puberty has a much more regular aging process, the Naiad aging at a slow rate even if they aren’t “mentally ready” yet even to that point. The longest puberty for a Naiad could take 15-20 years. Puberty ends when a Naiad is in a form ranging from 17-22. At that point, they age very slow, not relying on solely mental ability but how much damage they take internally and externally. A Naiad that goes through physical abuse that doesn’t actually kill them for example, will age faster than a Naiad that sits and does nothing to put themselves in harm’s way. Roughly, if a Naiad was in 12 major battles in one year, getting decent injury each battle, they would age the same rate as a human (which in Naiad society, isn’t uncommon). Mental strain though, is still a factor, just much lesser than in childhood. Upon death, Naiads rapidly age however many years they naturally had before actually dying.
Pregnancy is a tricky thing for Naiads. They deal with puberty similarly to people and all that, but after giving birth, female Naiads will age normally completely. Year to year, just like a human. Thus, children are a great risk, especially seeing as majority of Naiads don’t make it to adulthood. This also leads to encouragement to have multiple children when they do have one (the number of children they have doesn’t affect the aging process).
Naiads live in usually somewhat primal tribes and groups, with a hierarchy of there being one sole leader of the ground, their ‘beta’ and then the rest of the group. They are prideful, not taking lightly to insults aimed at them, their group or race as well as holding wins in battles highly (losses as well, being giant blows to them). People can be outcast by their group for whatever reason, them ranging from a former leader being exiled after losing battle for their title, to someone sabotaging a hunt for food.
It’s more matriarchal society, as woman are treasured for their ability to have children, especially seeing as they much more easily die after having children (see Aging). It’s not at all uncommon for a woman to lead the tribes, which usually have 20-50 people.
Naiads are a rather spiritual group too, believing every body of water has a being in control of it and the ocean (referred to as ‘Oceanus’ ‘Pontus’ or simply ‘Ocean’ all as names). They as well have an awareness of the moon’s pull on the ocean’s tides, viewing the moon (Called either ‘Moon’ or ‘Fengari’ [N]) as a great power literally out of this world. Some pray to ‘minor sea gods’ viewed as Oceanus’s helpers such as Proteus, Nereus, Phorcys and Glaucus who are viewed to be as the fathers or grandfathers of nymph-kind as well as sea monsters.
Upon death, should it be an ‘honorable’ death, they are granted a grave. This includes dying in battle, childbirth, or in service to any ‘higher’ power or being. If there is there is a body and the person died an ‘unhonorable’ death or did something unhonorable before they died, like betray the tribe, the body is brought usually to the surface, even land masses if those are nearby and offered to be eaten by whatever animals are passed and seen as ‘punishment after death for their transgressions’. If they died neither honorably nor unhonorably, there is a brief mourning period before the body is let to be swept away by the currents. If a body is not recovered, and destroyed/eaten by something, they will not receive any sort of funeral or grave.
Relationship With Other RacesEdit
Humans: Naiads commonly mate with humans if they are not breeding with other naiads. They do tend to view them as lower in the food chain though, and as such, will treat them as lesser life forms, pets, even toys to play with (and break) as they please.
Mages, Witches and other magic using species: Naiads tend to shy away from Magic-users that practice ice and electric magic as they are rather susceptible to its power. But nonetheless, they mate with them as they do humans.
Wood Elves and other light elf species: Naiads connect to Wood Elves very easily, them likely being who Naiads would breed and mate with most often of land dwellers. They view them as a strong race for surviving through the ages like they did and can even view them as equals in some cases.
Dark Elves and other corrupted elf species: Naiads do not view them as highly as light species like the Wood Elf, but will not angrily attack them on sight or anything. Naiads don’t outwardly look down on Dark Elves like they would humans either, reluctant respect being given as they survived the same things in the ages of Elysium. Indifference and neutrality toward them describe it best.
Dwarves: To be honest, Naiads think they’re ‘cute’ as trying to ‘match up’ to the bigger races. They greatly underestimate dwarven abilities but Oceanic Naiads tend to tread lightly with this. In the ocean, even the smallest pufferfish can still kill after all.
Vampires: They are dark creatures with fangs that can teleport and- yeah Naiads don’t like them. You lost them at either ‘dark’ ‘fangs’ or ‘teleport’, they’re not touching that. Though, with the Naiad’s skin, the Vamp likely won’t be able to teleport and bite through on the first try, in a swift motion. And some Naiads are aware of this fact, alleviating some fear.
Werewolves: They are dark creatures with giant teeth that can be deadly killers under the full moon- it’s just like with vampires. If you challenge them, they’re 9/10 not backing down, but they’re not going to challenge werewolves willy-nilly.
Undead: The concept of the undead is something that Naiads aren’t unfamiliar with, but they definitely are wary of a creature that has risen from Death’s clutches. As well as the fact that biting the undead could have adverse effects on them.
Orcs: Even if they aren’t the most intelligent race, they are strong and that’s good enough for the Naiads. So long as an Orc doesn’t attack a Naiad, there won’t be any clashing usually.
Nekos and other Half-animal, Half-Human species: Surprisingly, they aren’t afraid of the human-cat hybrid, instead jumping at challenges to battle them. Depending on what animal the hybrid is and where that animal is in the food chain dictates their treatment. For example, a bunny would be very low on the food chain as such, looked down on. A shark hybrid would have higher respect from Naiads on the contrary.
Angels: Naiads usually aren’t one for winged creatures from common interactions with creatures like Harpies. Should the Angel be nice in their approach to meeting Naiads and said Naiad not have prior bad experience with Angels, it likely won’t be hard for a friendship to form. A romantic relationship is a bit far-fetched notion though.
Demons: Naiads aren’t off put by demons at all. Demons to be honest, are just another land dweller to them. Depending on the strength of the demon by appearance and by actual showing of strength, determines how much respect, if any, they receive.