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“Quan” is both plural and singular.  The quan are savage aquatic humans.

Quan are “aquatic humans” (shortened, at some point, by the Carvolians and Sasparadans, and then by every human group on Pala, to “quan”).  Equipped with their more or less abundant Tephnian drygills, quan are sometimes seen on land.  Their story is a tragic one, viewed from a certain light, but today many quan are driven by a renewed desire to change their collective or, at least, individual lot.

Under the rough waves, the quan live in vastly ancient spiral cities of floating post-plastic, which have all been terribly shaken and eroded by undersea volcanoes and mudquakes, not to mention warfare.  Though at one point the quan had a vast series of empires and constituted the height of sentient life on earth, today their cities are ruins, and most quan dwell in small family units “in the wild” or in post-plastic shanty-camps inside the fallen walls of undersea coliseums.

Quan are, today at least, barbaric by human standards, eating mostly fish, raw, and kelp, also raw, in chunks torn apart by their sharp fangs.  They tend to be ethereally pale, huge-eyed, and almost totally hairless (though many do have supernumerary head-hair).

Quan are also typically much leaner and nimbler than humans and have very strong gengineered guts and circulatory systems.  But, even with enhanced bodies, on land they are weak.  And quan seem to be going through a slow devolution:  Many cohorts produce almost no art, even folk art, at this point (others retain rock arranging, poetic, dramatic, and other more obscure arts).  More troubling, most quan seem disinterested in doing anything but grabbing fish and mating.

Those who are interested in ABOVE (they are amazed that they can survived ABOVE and say the word reverently) tend to behave like odd, oddly curious barbarians—think the big dumb fake “samurai” (Mifune Toshiro) in Seven Samurai.

Quan can interbreed with humans (only), but with a very low success rate.  Quan–human children are always quan, of a sort (they have gills and require drygills on land).

Quan speak various tongues; the most common are Zhiu (various dialects, in the Atlas Ocean and Ocean of the South), Haqqaa (in the northern seas and the Middlesea), and Ginmin (in the Imperial Sea).  Their voices sound like an ill, whistling wind to land creatures, but they can croakingly make intelligible (if monotone) non-quan sounds.  Quan characters may roll an INT check at -2 to see if they can also make themselves known in a given dialgoue, without training, to an ammon (who frequently will speak their tongue, anyway).  Quan must invest skill points in human and other land tongues.

Ability modifiers:  +2 DEX, +1 CON, -1 STR, -1 INT, -1 CHA.

Size:  Medium.  Land speed 30 feet.

Hell science classes allowed:  None.

Species bonus:

  • Aquatic:  Gills. +8 Swim. +2 on all Skill checks related to the ocean.
  • Claws and fangs:  Three attacks, d2/d2/d4 damage, no proficiency required, to hit -0/-4/-4, player chooses which is -0.
  • Berserk instincts:  +2 to all bum’s rushes, grapples, subdual attacks, attacks of opportunity and other instinct-centric attacks.
  • Mature electrophysical sense:  A quan who passes within 50 feet of a secret door is entitled to a Search check, as if he were actively looking for it.
  • Favored class:  Barbarian (Brave [typical quan barb], Horizon Walker [per PHB 3.5], Wave Tracer [lore-gathering barb shaman–warrior], Ghostgill Killer [pariah barbaric executioner]).

Species malus:

  • Aquatic:  Requires drygill to travel outside of ocean (1 bonus at start must be spent on Archaetech: Drygill).
  • Landsickness:  Once per year, a quan must roll a WIL save against landsickness; the difficulty increases as the years go by without the quan returning to the seas for at least 1 month/year spent above ground.  Failure results in temporary insanity, which, if the quan is not returned to water, can become permanent; this insanity is always homicidal.

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