Kijani

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What if elves but green?

Kijani are a race of humanoid plants from the Midgard campaign setting for Pathfinder and Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition. Essentially resembling elves with green skin and green hair, kijani are a seemingly peaceful and serene jungle-dwelling race. Emphasis on seemingly. Long ago, they allowed a cabal of human druids entry to their ancestral home in the Southlands region known as Kush. The druids were originally fascinated by these intelligent plants, who had been around for eons but had passed beneath the notice of the great races of old, but then they got distracted by the potentials of the new secrets of primal magic that they were learning from their hosts and proceeded to fuck shit up, big time.

What did these geniuses do? Why, they summoned a terrible plant-based monster called the Green Walker into the world, which unleashed the plague of its parasitic tendril puppets and vine lord spawn into the world. Fully half of the kijani were wiped out; the lucky ones were killed, the unlucky were subsumed by the Green Walker's parasitic spawn and reduced to its mindless agents, forcing the survivors to flee far to the south and eventually resettle in the Zobanu Jungle.

Because of this, the kijani wrestle to this day with the rage and fear left by that ancient trauma. Hence, their cultural emphasis on serenity and mental discipline, to avoid being consumed by the fiery rage within. Even with this emphasis on not giving in to their dark side, and their genuine fascination with non-plant lifeforms, the kijani are still people you don't want to push too far. And, of course, they loathe druids... and they're not very fond of rangers, either!

One of the strangest influences of this conflux of hateful loathing at the Green Walker and fascination with humanoids is the so-called "Great Change"; a cultural plan by the kijani to transition away from being plants and become mammals themselves! This plan centers around their unique breeding cycle. See, the kijani start life in a very different state from most humanoids. When the plantfolk create a child, a single parent produces a seedling—a vinelike plant that symbiotically bonds with a host. Traditionally the parent hosts the seedling, which draws nutrients and even a small amount of life force directly from its host. The process is essentially harmless, resulting in little more than occasional fatigue and increased appetite for the host. The seedling gestates in this way, growing slightly larger over the course of a decade or so, until one day it detaches and begins its transformation into the adult stage. This process is rapid, and a fully adult kijani emerges 24 hours later.

Now, the kijani seek out a new way to perpetuate their species. While many plantfolk parents still serve as hosts to their seedling children, some seek out willing mammalian humanoid surrogates to host their seedlings for them. This is a crucial part of their Great Change—drawing energy, nutrition, and life from humanoids to incorporate into their children. As a society the kijani never force or trick others to serve as seedling hosts, but they welcome any willing surrogates into their culture with open arms and boundless gratitude.

Socially, kijani band together in organizations known as clusters—groups of individual plantfolk who work together for the common good. Each cluster is guided by a single kijani known as a speaker. Though individual kijani are warm, personable, welcoming, and even seductive, clusters project a different attitude. They can be close-minded and clannish, with a tendency to prioritize their collective interests above individual concerns. Despite their group tendency to band together, kijani have a great reverence for life and can always find a way to relate with other living beings; they have a very particular tendency to adopt the more interesting cultural customs of humanoids they encounter into their clusters.

5e PC Stats[edit]

Ability Score Increase: +2 Wisdom, +1 to one other ability score of your choice
Size: Medium
Speed: 30 feet
Plant Type
Darkvision 60 feet
Contained Fury: When you’re badly hurt, your base urges send you into a fury. While below half your maximum hit points, you have access to the the following options:
  • Once per turn when you hit with a weapon attack, you deal an extra 2 (1d4) weapon damage.
  • As a reaction, when you are hit by an attack during your fury, you can add 2 to your AC against that attack. You must be able to see the attacker to take this reaction.
Plantborn: Though you enter a state of dormancy during long rests similar to the way other creatures sleep, you are immune to any effect that would put you to sleep. When you reach 7th level, you can cast the speak with plants spell as a 3rd-level spell once with this trait and regain the ability to do so when you finish a long rest. Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for this spell.
Roots of the Past: You have proficiency in one of the following skills of your choice: Arcana, History, Nature, or Religion.