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What if the Aranwyth Tribe still has the cloudsheeps?


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The Aranwyth lost their great herd of cloudsheep [S:KoH 231]. But what if this tribe still has them?

I looked some facts up: The best description of the cloudsheeps are in The Book of Heortling Mythology [p 49-51]. The cloudsheep are the Urothings, seems like the real sheep, and the Urothtrorol, which are more like rams. I've checked Anaxial's Roster and read the description of the Urothtrorol [AR, p 198-199].

Couple of questions:
- are the cloudsheep of the Aranwyth only a herd of Urothings or are the herd a mixture of Urothings and Urothtrorol? In the AR-description are the mentioned habitats of the Cloud Ram far way from the Aranwyth tribe region and clan tulas
- what is the benefit of herding cloudsheep?
- how differs herding cloudsheep from herding normal sheep?

I've read the Aranwyth description and infos regarding the geography of their tulas on the old mailing list. What I understood is, that the Aranwyth clans are semi-nomadic and travel from highland to lowland.

- what will change for them [and for the neighboring tribes and clans], when the Aranwyth get their cloudsheeps back or didn't lose the herd at all?

 

Edited by prinz.slasar
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2 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

The cloudsheep are the Urothings, seems like the real sheep, and the Urothtrorol, which are more like rams.

I think keeping the distinction is probably good. The former being uncommon to gain, but can herd, where the latter are more like powerful spirits.

2 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

But what if this tribe still has them?

Depends on what you want to do, but a good story for heroes if the clan has lost them and must regain them.

2 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

habitats of the Cloud Ram far way from the Aranwyth tribe region and clan tulas

Which makes for a greater quest to get them.

2 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

- what is the benefit of herding cloudsheep?
- how differs herding cloudsheep from herding normal sheep?

I'd go with two distinctions: 1) very, very fine naturally white wool - something the clan can trade with and gain wealth; 2) they are part cloud, therefore they can absorb moisture and nourish the land they 'graze' upon; and 2a) a corollary of being part-cloud, they may be able to run into the air to escape danger (but much more difficult to retrieve when they do so!).  Remember how close the Aranwyth are to Prax - having a source of moisture for the land is very beneficial.

2 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

What I understood is, that the Aranwyth clans are semi-nomadic and travel from highland to lowland.

They border Prax, so this is increasingly dry hilly land. Their highlands start to border Telmori wildlands and the Culbrea (e.g. the Emerald Sword clan). 

Gaining Cloudsheep is probably a similar style quest to that of the Red Cow clan gaining their red cows. It's something they do maybe annually. It may be an "easier" quest in some sense (you need to walk the winds, raid Heler's(?) pasturage, and bring them back), though the down side is that they are more likely to get "lost" and escape back into the air so Cloudsheep herders have to be very wary of dangers.

Gaining Urothtrorol rams is a much greater quest/challenge. The advantage is that you get a Cloud Ram from which to sire fine cloudsheep with other benefits.

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5 hours ago, jajagappa said:

I'd go with two distinctions: 1) very, very fine naturally white wool - something the clan can trade with and gain wealth; 2) they are part cloud, therefore they can absorb moisture and nourish the land they 'graze' upon; and 2a) a corollary of being part-cloud, they may be able to run into the air to escape danger (but much more difficult to retrieve when they do so!).  Remember how close the Aranwyth are to Prax - having a source of moisture for the land is very beneficial.

 

It was my understanding that the various cloud-animals listen in the Myths of the Heortlings are not just "part-animal-part-cloud", but in a very literal sense different kinds of clouds. It is as much a poetic description of Orlanth as the progenitor of literal weather phenomena as it is a, well, bestiary. 

I can't help but to think that to bring them down to a clan's tula and make them herdable would require some kind of mythic transmission from clouds to tangible animals in some sense. Or maybe this is a false dichotomy. Clouds are sheep, and sheep are also sorta clouds, they just happen to be on different ends of the spectrum, maybe.

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13 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I can't help but to think that to bring them down to a clan's tula and make them herdable would require some kind of mythic transmission from clouds to tangible animals in some sense.

That's why it requires a quest to bring them back.

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22 hours ago, jajagappa said:

I'd go with two distinctions: 1) very, very fine naturally white wool - something the clan can trade with and gain wealth; 2) they are part cloud, therefore they can absorb moisture and nourish the land they 'graze' upon; and 2a) a corollary of being part-cloud, they may be able to run into the air to escape danger (but much more difficult to retrieve when they do so!).  Remember how close the Aranwyth are to Prax - having a source of moisture for the land is very beneficial.
 

I think I'll go with all three, but 2a and 2b are more important, because they seem more fantastic and magical. To combine the dry terrain and the cloudly characteristic of the sheep fits nicely and seem reasonable.
 

22 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Gaining Cloudsheep is probably a similar style quest to that of the Red Cow clan gaining their red cows. It's something they do maybe annually. It may be an "easier" quest in some sense (you need to walk the winds, raid Heler's(?) pasturage, and bring them back), though the down side is that they are more likely to get "lost" and escape back into the air so Cloudsheep herders have to be very wary of dangers.

So, this is a Heroquest? What would be the best time in the year for it? The "Red Cow Cattle Raid Quest" takes place in late Sea season, so  I think it has to match with the cloudsheeps "work" or their life cycle [therefore: no heroquest in Sacred Time].

I think I have to track down some Heler myths to know more about possible heroquests.

Another question is: What's with the horses? The Aranwyth Tribe is famous for its horses. Are horses typical for sheep-herding clans in the dry uphills? Seems like the horses are a result from the shift from Orlanthi to Elmali.

In terms of RQG: What stats does a cloudsheep have?
Can't find any stats for Sheep in RQG. I guess, these stats have to be modified by the spirit-heritage of the cloudsheep.

If a clan has "hero-quested" a herd of cloudsheep, how can enemies or sheep-raiders get profit from the cloudsheep? The Lunars can't keep them, they fled.
Can someone use the powers of such creatures which manifest in the Middle World only because of a heroquesting task?
Or is it more the case, that the Aranwyth clans fear to lose the cloudsheeps because of an escape,  and don't have to be afraid of cloudsheep-raiders which can't get any benefit from stealing these magical animals?
 

Edited by prinz.slasar
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31 minutes ago, prinz.slasar said:

I think I have to track down some Heler myths to know more about possible heroquests.

Storm Tribe has the HW/HQ1 subcultitis treatment, which has the advantage that each subcult is a heroquest in its own right. Including at least two ram subcults.

But that's just Heler among the Orlanthi.

Heler is also the maiden in distress for the Nestentos, Aroka and Barntar's Daga quest, and the bride in "Tat and Tol in the clouds" myth of both Orlanth and Yinkin.

And then Heler has a bunch of ancient and more recent Sea Tribe myths, like being the only one able to access the dry side of the Earth when it had risen above the waters, like leading the invasion into the sky aiding Lorion and Veldara/Annilla, or being sundered from the Seas by Umath or Vadrus.

And Heler just may have something to do with the planet Entekos.

31 minutes ago, prinz.slasar said:

Another question is: What's with the horses? The Aranwyth Tribe is famous for its horses. Are horses typical for sheep-herding clans in the dry uphills? Seems like the horses are a result from the shift from Orlanthi to Elmali.

Whenever I hear "Tribe X is famous for" I wonder how a bunch of clans all are supposed to tick the same way, and the answer is obviously that they don't, but that there is one clan which is famous, maybe two clans who copy it, and the rest just being your average hill barbarians.

If a tribe is famous for two things, then it has two prominent clans. Easy as that.

Horse-breeders don't usually use hilltop pastures, so look at one of the valleys in Aranwyth territory for the horse breeder clan. And check the hill dwellers for cloud sheep clans (there might be more than one).

31 minutes ago, prinz.slasar said:

In terms of RQG: What stats does a cloudsheep have?
Can't find any stats for Sheep in RQG. I guess, these stats have to be modified by the spirit-heritage of the cloudsheep.

Basically, take the Impala for sheep or goats but reduce speed and jump ability. Stats-wise, one herd animal is pretty much like the other. Some are a little heavier or taller, some may have additional abiities, but for sheep just go for the basics, and then add what Anaxial's Roster has to add as abilities for cloud animals like the cloud leopard.

 

Cloudsheep can be demigod beasts, so have really high magic and other stats, or they can be little more than superior sheep.

31 minutes ago, prinz.slasar said:

If a clan has "hero-quested" a herd of cloudsheep, how can enemies or sheep-raiders get profit from the cloudsheep? The Lunars can't keep them, they fled.

Sheep-raiders are uncommon among the Orlanthi - if you go raiding, you usually go after cattle, goods, or treasures. The cloudsheep might make a lesser treasure.

31 minutes ago, prinz.slasar said:

Can someone use the powers of such creatures which manifest in the Middle World only because of a heroquesting task?
Or is it more the case, that the Aranwyth clans fear to lose the cloudsheeps because of an escape,  and don't have to be afraid of cloudsheep-raiders which can't get any benefit from stealing these magical animals?
 

If you want to have red cows like that Cinsina clan, you can either raid that clan, or you can learn their heroquest and do it for yourself. Whether another clan using your heroquest weakens the result of the quest or whether it strengthens it may be up to debate, or to be decided in every case separately.

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3 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

So, this is a Heroquest? What would be the best time in the year for it? The "Red Cow Cattle Raid Quest" takes place in late Sea season, so  I think it has to match with the cloudsheeps "work" or their life cycle [therefore: no heroquest in Sacred Time].

Sure is a HeroQuest!

You could make arguments for many times of the year. In Fireseason, the Cloudsheep are most likely "out to pasture" and in "higher pastures". This is the season of raiding though, so would fit very well, but the Sun is very watchful and the guardians are likely to drive you off.  Seaseason may be the easiest when the Cloudsheep are most plentiful, but Heler and the cloud cats are always around and tough to get best.  Etc.

3 hours ago, prinz.slasar said:

If a clan has "hero-quested" a herd of cloudsheep, how can enemies or sheep-raiders get profit from the cloudsheep? The Lunars can't keep them, they fled.

Just because Lunar army is gone, doesn't mean there isn't trade.  Sell spun wool to merchants from Karse and Esrolia to turn into finished cloth. 

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45 minutes ago, HeartQuintessence said:

Cloudsheep wool is it like a cloud? Does it hold colorwell? 

I'd reckon that'd depend on the color of the dye, some colors being anathema to Air.  Either the dye wouldn't take, or it'd ruin the wool.

!i!

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I can almost see "elven cloaks" aka LotR being made out of their wool, provided you don't treat it with dyes. They ought to be water-proof (or rather, water-dividing), good for hiding in twilight, even better in mist.

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6 hours ago, HeartQuintessence said:

Cloudsheep wool is it like a cloud? Does it hold colorwell?

I'd imagine it is very soft and silky.

Regarding color:

5 hours ago, Ian Absentia said:

I'd reckon that'd depend on the color of the dye, some colors being anathema to Air.  Either the dye wouldn't take, or it'd ruin the wool.

Certainly could naturally be white, black, or some in-between grey. One has only to look at sunrises and sunsets to see that it can be dyed various shades from golden to pink, peach, and even purplish blue, although perhaps these don't hold well? Never green, never brown. And likely not sky blue!

4 hours ago, Joerg said:

They ought to be water-proof (or rather, water-dividing), good for hiding in twilight, even better in mist.

Really good for hiding in mist! And where they excel are when you are crossing a barren ridgeline.

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On 1/3/2020 at 11:55 AM, HeartQuintessence said:

It might like you Float on low lying clouds or walk on them (or maybe scoot on them on your belly. So to anyone on the ground it looks like a cloud drifting by?

Perhaps if you got enough of it and maybe magically fulled/walked it (not sure what the common English term is, but making it fluffier basically) you could get something similar to the nimbus cloud Goku rides around on in Dragon Ball. I doubt it'd be very fast (having no specific drive of movement), but hey, it's a thought!

Edited by Sir_Godspeed
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Btw, I found I wrote this little bit in my campaign regarding some text discovered in the Jonstown Knowledge Temple. You might find the ideas of use.

It takes some time reading through old scrolls of forgotten clans, but Sorola finds the following reference in a story of the Turtle clan that became part of the Cloud tribe, also known as the Aranwyth, who now live on the border of Prax.

In days of yore, the Turtle were hard-pressed by the Two-pine and the Badger clans. Then did the champion Erinvarik lead his companions on the Cloud Castle Quest. They walked the Rainbow Bridge and entered through the Lightning Gate. Orolmarn refused them, but Erinvarik challenged him to a set of contests, even as the Lord of Beasts had done. Orolmarn could not refuse. It was there that Erinvarik won the Cloud Sheep for the clan and the Ivory Horn of Orolmarn that could Summon the Thunder Brothers. The clan was pleased with the gifts, though they mourned the loss of Erinvarik.

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