Yultani

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A Yultish shield-bearer.

History

The Yultani can trace their line to an old Igosi chief, one of the most famous warriors and conquerors of all Skantosi history: Vulmarr of Clan Yult, known by his epithet The Tenacious. Vulmurr of the Clan Yult along with a band of two hundred of his fellow Igosi brethren set sail westward from Bru-Al’s Hearth on the great warship Aldar’s Fist. After a three month’s sail they made landfall on a mountainous island with dense woods, which they would name Yultan after Vulmarr’s clan. But this island was not inhabited by men, but instead demonic beasts.Where his companions faltered in the face of these demons, Vulmarr proved unwavering. His warriors remaining on the ship, Vulmarr set out into the demonic woods of Yultan alone, returning in the morning carrying three of the monster’s heads with him. He would go on to kill the three witch queens who ruled the demons: the Azul’dai. Vulmarr would found the Kingdom of Yultan on this island, his surviving companions would become the forebears of the Yultani noble clans of today. Over the years settlers would arrive at the island, and the city of Vaed’ar soon formed. The Yultani never forgot the great battle against the demons, and the feats of their first king, developing a strong martial tradition in which boys are trained from birth in combat.

Appearance

As broad as an Igosi and near as tall as an Alturan, the Yultani are one of the more physically imposing peoples of Skantos. They are light of hair and fair skinned. Trained from birth in fighting, the men are well muscled. The women are muscled too, aiding in both hunts and labor. Yultani men groom their beards, but never cut their hair, which is only cut in defeat. Thus, the greatest warriors can be spotted by the length of their hair.

Traditions, Customs, Attire and Cuisine

The Yultani place emphasis on combat like the Alturans on philosophy. Indeed, like Vulmarr set out from Bru-Al’s hearth to conquer, it is custom for every Yultani boy to set sail from Vaed’ar and attain their own wealth, the majority serving as sellswords or guards, the most promising are recruited into the famed mercenary company of the Lion’s Spear. Merchants who acquired their money outside of war are looked down upon, regardless of how rich they may be.

Their most famous custom, one attracting visitors from around Skantos, is the Haksamuldor, translated into the common tongue as the Witchslaying Tournaments. Held in a now ornate arena deep in the caves beneath Vaed’ar where the Azul’dai were slain, in the honor of Vulmarr. It is held every five years at the start of the Summer Solstice, and any man--Yultani or not--is allowed entry. However these fights are usually to the death, and thus only brave, or foolish, enter. The winner of the Haksamuldor lives on eternally, and has near limitless prospect, many taking prestigious captaincies with mercenary companies or noblemen’s armies.

Yultani, like their Igosi forefathers, generally wear thick clothes, often with fur. The people place little emphasis on fashion, however the wealthy can be seen wearing gold jewelry and carrying ornate swords. These strong people are more often seen in armor than casual clothes, as it is a rarity to spot them far from a battlefield.

Yultani cuisine is as hearty as its people, and is almost always eaten with ale in hand. Yultan has little farms, and thus much of its food is hunted or fished. There is an abundance of meat, and roast boar served whole is a common celebratory meal. The seven days at the end of the year, Thorilmas, named after the son of Vulmarr, are marked with huge public feasts. It is said that tables of meats and beer stretch across the whole island, and all noble clans are expected to contribute.

Afterword

A fierce people, the Yultani are more often feared than respected. While other peoples may consider them barbaric, few would dare to say this to one’s face. They pride themselves in their honor, and will always honor their word lest they dishonor their name for ever. Those that cross a Yultani, like those who try to war them, will not be met lightly.