Grol

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Physiology

The Grol are a race of humanoids with some pig-like features. They are taller and heavier than Dwarves, standing at usually 6'.

All Grol possess great strength, which is heightened in those who partake in fighting.

Both male and female Grol can keep facial hair, though it is rare to see anything that matches a Dwarven beard.

Personalities

When not in a fight or at war, the Grol are a very private races, keeping to themselves and treating outsiders with suspicion. However, some Dwarven travellers claim to see a very generous side to the Grol, especially when in need or in danger. Grol traders who arrive in Bormar settlements do not tend to stay long and often try to hide the fact that they are there.

Skills

Having survived for centuries without the level of technology or civilisation advancement that is enjoyed by the Dwarves, the Grol as a whole are incredibly resourceful and hardy. Skills that would sometimes be seen as 'below' many Dwarves have a huge cultural relevance to the Grol - leatherworking, carving and other such things, with the Grol slowly evolving their own masterful practises at the skills.

It can be argued that the greatest skill of the Grol is their martial ability, with each Grol having innate physical strength and the ability to fight.

Culture

The Grol, on first appearances, are an incredibly martial culture. Whilst some may look and think that their warriors are mindless brutes, the Grol value strength, bravery, courage and valour as much as any other race. Many Grol carry tokens or carvings to remind them, in their own individual ways, to keep to their strict code of honour. Though, some blind eyes may be turned on those Grol who do not possess exception strength or martial skill, but achieve their victories through strategy or other means.

Grol warriors and fighters are fiercely loyal, not only to their own warbands, but to their own villages and towns. Small stone tokens are often carried by Grol warriors that symbolise their home in some way, shape or form.

Any combat undertaken by the Grol has to be done in the melee, to do otherwise is seen as cowardly and dishonourable.

Scars and bruises are portrayed with the utmost confidence and pride within Grol culture, signifying that the individual has survived a particularly devastating blow. It is not unheard of for some underhanded Grol to attempt to scar themselves. Many seasoned warriors and veterans can quite clearly tell the different. Piercings are quite common amongst the higher ranks of melee fighters, with particular emphasis on the ears and face. Jewellery and armour owned by someone who the individual has bested in battle are also highly prized.

Tattoos can commonly be seen amongst more experienced warriors, with some hidden meanings that Bormar has yet to identify, but it is clear that they are a sign of respect. The tattoos worn by the Bejji are particularly elaborate and not only cover their faces but sometimes the chest area.

Surprisingly, the Grol are almost unique in that they shun alcohol almost entirely across their society. Those Grol who are seen drinking are often those who have already been exiled and do it either to weather their burden of ostracism, or to simply experience drunkenness for the first time. Similarly, many mind-altering substances, such as 'spirit smoke', are used only for spiritual purposes, though many younger Grol flaunt these rules.

Being land-locked for so long, the Grol have very, very little knowledge when it comes to the sea or sailing. Small, cobbled-together rafts have been seen with Grol 'sailors' on board, but these rafts often break up after a small amount of time.

The Grol are a very group-oriented race, with lone individuals often treated with great mistrust. As such, Grol gatherings can be huge affairs, or very tight-knit ceremonies. The Harna Kulu, possibly the most notable of Grol celebrations, is usually held as a religious ceremony, victory celebration, or a mixture of both.

Leadership

As far as it is understood within Bormar, the Grol simply follow the strong, or those Grol who have achieved many great deeds or victories.

Grol Rogues, or exiles, command no power or respect. They will often have to either band together in order to survive, or steal and eke out whatever meagre existence they can find wherever they have ended up. Being so desperate, a Rogue can sometimes be a surprisingly dangerous opponent.

Fighters and Warriors are the more commonly-seen in Grol warbands. They will sometimes order around smaller groups and in some rare occasions they may also hold power over some small area of land. This is often reserved for particularly notable individuals.

Grol Bejji are often the de-facto leaders of any group of Grol and sometimes also rule over areas of land. They are warriors who wield heavy axes or hammers, often at the same time, commanding immense respect, dread and fear from their enemies and also their warband. Possessing immense strength and usually much larger than the normal specimens of Grol, they are a force to be reckoned with.

History

The Grol have lived within the Mar mountain range for as long as the Dwarves have been there.

Religion

Little is known of the religion of the Grol, but a few small fragments are understood by Dwarven scholars. The Grol believe that their Gods shaped the world from a single, unfathomably large stone sphere.

The patron God of the Bejji is Ar-Bu; who is known to have a mighty beard.

Relations

Sharing many borders with Bormar and having many settlements and villages within the Bormar borders themselves, the Grol have a somewhat tenuous relationship with Dwarves. Whilst many Grol will not shoot a Dwarf on sight if they are wandering through the wilderness, they will still treat them with suspicion.

Even with their close proximity, it has taken Bormar generations to gather what little knowledge they have of the Grol, including societal details, language, hierarchy and other such things. Trade is infrequent, but not unheard of, between the two.

Language

The Grol have their own unique language that they have kept very private to outsiders over the generations. Dwarven scholars have slowly pieced together a lexicon of words and phrases, in order to, hopefully, better understand their neighbours.

Many Grol can understand Dwarven and speak some choice phrases.