To Chance with Hell (Planescape)
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The Ethereal Plane is a realm of ghosts and haze. It is a gray world that shadows the Material Plane, always watching yet rarely seen. Within the fog live the nathri. They are said to have sprung from the depths of the Deep Ethereal itself, and seem highly attuned to the plane. Their history remains a mystery since as a race they are savage and lack any known civilization. Instead, they live in hunting packs centered around an extended family and feed off of the few creatures that attempt to traverse their ethereal home.
Gameplay Note: For the purposes of playing Nathri characters, treat them as Halflings.
Personality: With the tribulations of life on the Ethereal, nathri have little culture and are considered crude savages by most. They do what they must to survive and have little time for anything else. They are also, by necessity, scavengers. Any loose item that is potentially useful will quickly find its way into nathri hands. Even apparently useless items will be taken if they catch a nathri’s eye. The harsh environment of the Deep Ethereal has also made them very volatile, and if displeased by someone chances are they will lash out. However, they never hold a grudge for a minor offenders beyond a day or so – their minds are simply too focused on where to find the next meal (even when living in abundance among society). However, those who are seen killing a nathri will be forever perceived as a threat.
Physical Description: Nathri typically stand only 4 feet tall and have green skin and unruly long black hair. They have wide faces with flat noses and long pointed ears. Adult males will have a small tuft of hair on their chin. Eye color is usually a blend of yellow, green, and gray, though often one of those shades will be dominant. They also have on the backs of their right hands a small barb that secretes a mild poison. They wear clothing (often scavenged) with many pouches and bags in which to carry the entirety of their possessions, and rarely wear heavy armor. Nathri are also capable of consuming any organic matter – a fact that benefits the scavengers greatly.
Relations: Nathri clans rarely get along well with other races, seeing them as merely a source of goods to be stolen from. Individual nathri, however, are far different. The few who have ventured out into the multiverse, especially among adventuring groups, become quite friendly with their companions regardless of their race, even to the extent of considering them as their new clan. In fact, being so removed from the rest of planar society, nathri simply are not treated with the typical distrust many harbor for races like the tieflings. They see all races as just various shades of nonnathri. However, their loyalty apparent naivety are best not overestimated. The first remark about one’s “pet nathri” is bound to be met with the full force of their rage.
Alignment: Nathri have little concern for good and evil, and even less for the structure of society, and therefore have a strong predisposition towards chaotic neutral.
Nathri Lands: The nathri are a nomadic race constantly traveling the Ethereal Plane, often raiding demiplanes there. Long-term nathri communities are unheard of, though more than a few Guvners believe they have some hidden real deep in the Ethereal where they may have originated from. On other planes they are rarely seen, with those few who are often become bandits and highwaymen along the trade routes that cross the Outlands, though a sizeable number of the waste collectors in major planar cities are nathri as well.
Beliefs: Nathri have no known deities or dominant belief systems. Despite their lack of any apparent culture of their own beyond their own clans, it has been rumored that all nathri travel through the Deep Ethereal at some point in their life in what can only be called a spiritual pilgrimage. The validity of this rumor, let alone their destination or reason for making such a sojourn, are all unknown. Few nathri ally with the factions, but those who do find the greedy values of the Fated to fit their scavenging natures. The randomness of the Xaositects, especially when focused towards brute force, can often appeal to the more violent nathri. The endless ethereal mists also drive a few nathri towards the Bleak Cabal.
Language: Nathri speak their own strange language, as well as Planar Trade. It is also common for an eclectic mix of additional languages to be spoken by various members of a clan, which are usually the tongues of civilizations that they frequently spy on and raid.
Names: Nathri names consist of a given name at birth, and the name of the same gender parent. Given names are always chosen by the paternal grandfather, and are often reused from ancestors. On occasion, he will hear a name or word spoken in the language of a town they are raiding and later choose to use it for a grandchild’s name.
Male Names: Amkhet, Fek, Rezni
Female Names: Nammusah, Sebahkk, Tariktiri
Adventurers: With the nomadic lifestyle of the nathri, traveling through the unknown depths of the Ethereal Plane raiding demiplane after demiplane, world after world, it could be said that all nathri are adventurers. On occasion an individual (or even more rarely an entire clan) will leave the Ethereal and use their adventuring skills for some grander cause. Nevertheless, while they are very few in numbers, it appears as if a greater proportion of nathri are adventurers than any other race.
Roleplaying a Nathri: Life is harsh and can end at any moment, so you must do what you can to survive. Most often that means preying upon the weak for food and goods. It’s not malice that drives you, just the predatory hunger to continue on even at the cost of others. In your raids and travels, however, you have witnessed glories beyond the imagination of other creatures. You have walked through countless demiplanes, each its own pocket of twisted reality that refuses to conform to the rules of any of the other planes of existence. These worlds, each a unique gem, are your gardens and pastures, providing all that you need to survive. Many may call you barbaric, or even vermin, but you have walked in places that would have made them weep in joy and in terror. Even more importantly, you have come out of them, your sanity intact and pockets full of food to feed your clan.