Rakash (Firmament)

From Bestiary of the Hypogriph


The hateful hordes of the rat-men will stop at nothing until we are all dust. They want nothing than to reduce the world to rubble, and then rule over a dead world, where nothing but they exist. They cannot be reasoned with. There is only one choice: we kill them... or we become rat food.
โ€” Nefelein Pridesun, Aynachian noble

The Rakash, otherwise known as Ratfolk or Ratmen, are a race of humanoid rats native to the subterranean region known as Skitterfall. Avid servants of the demon lord Skanqrak, they are a species of cruel and evil conquerors, slavers and defilers of the world. The ravenous hordes of the Skitterfall Under-Empire seek to conquer the world in the name of their demonic god.

Biology[edit | edit source]

The average Rakash resembles a monstrous humanoid rat, with glaring red eyes and buck teeth which are often broken or jagged due to a lack of hygiene. Their coarse fur is generally brown, though some may be born with black fur (which is the sign of a rat of great physical prowess) or silvery white (a sign of great magic potential). Rakash stand at an average of 1,40 meters tall and weigh 40 kilograms, though many may weight less due to the mass malnourishment of Skitterfall's lower castes. They live an average of 80 years, but extremely few are known to reach such ages as they generally die much earlier. Magically-inclined Rakash have the tendency to grow curved horns upon their heads, similar to those present in the demon lord Skanqrak, and with enough power, may achieve biological immortality. Rakash are a male-only species, with their spawn being created in vats by alchemists. All Rakash possess an inherit resistance to natural diseases, with the fallen being largely immune to all but the most terrible afflictions, though they are well known to be carriers of many plagues, to the misfortune of all those they encounter.

History[edit | edit source]

The origins of the Rakash are lost to history, but their race is an old one, recorded to have existed for almost eight thousand years. The Dwarves speak of a malign spire of demonic stone being thrust into the world by the demon lord Skanqrak which led to vast sways of caverns to be polluted and corrupted, before hordes of ravenous Rakash begun pouring into the Dwarves' holds. From these legends, many scholars have come to believe the Rakash are demons from Festerblight, incarnated into mortal bodies.

Society[edit | edit source]

Culture[edit | edit source]

Rakash society is one of treachery and ambition; every single rat believes himself to be the most important person in the world, and as such treats all others as rivals, though they are also cowardly and generally do not speak against their authorities openly. The religious caste generally tends to hold the most sway across the populate, as they are the living beacons of the Rat King that all Rakash worship, while the warrior caste serves both as an army and a police force, ensuring the commoners are doing their part in the Under-Empire. The Rakash are heavy practitioners of slavery, both of outsiders and of the their own kind, with the weakest of their own litters typically being doomed to a life of servitude alongside traitors and members of ruined clans. The Rakash place great emphasis on both magic and technology, with scholars, scientists and sorcerers being esteemed figures among their kind (or as much as they are able to feel esteem for each other). Due to their treacherous nature, however, no Rakash is safe from being usurped by a jealous competitor; they say power is only one backstab away, and murder is considered a mark of dominance in their people, for the murdered was clearly not strong and fit enough for his position if he allowed himself to be killed.

Religion[edit | edit source]

Religion is one of the most important aspects of Rakash society. All of them, from the lowest of slaves to the council-lords, worship the demon lord Skanqrak as their mighty patron and only real god, greater than all the other stupid fake surface gods. His worship is a mix of awe over his god-like powers and awesomeness, hate due to general Rakash jealously, and fear of his wrath, and is coordinated by the priest caste, known as the Rot Seers of Clan Pestis. These horned white rats preach the words of Skanqrak in holy sites (most usually located in ruined settlements of other races as an assertion of dominance) to the populace, and is one of the few subjects where the high and low castes agree with and remain in (relatively) peaceful terms. Heresies to the Rat King, such as the worship of any other gods or the forsaking of his word, are often responded very violently, with the suspects often butchered and devoured by their peers without hesitation.

Language[edit | edit source]

The Rakash of Skitterfall speak a foul language named Skitterish, which is a highly bastardized version of demonic tongue filled with squeaks and trills, that is spoken in a quick, hurried manner, where statements are often short, clipped, and repeated several times in a row in an effort to add emphasis. Due to the speed with which it is spoken, long sentences are often broken up into several fragments. They know the language from birth, and generally start speaking it as soon as they mature their vocal cords enough to do so. Most Rakash are also capable of speaking the common tongue in order to better deal with their slaves and enemies, typically to provoke and taunt them.

Relations with other races[edit | edit source]

If there is something the Rakash hate more than one another, is every other race in the world. Even the lowest slave sees himself as greater than the mightiest surface kings, and the Rakash see no greater joy than the destruction of their civilizations and the slaughtering of their innocents in the name of the Rat King. Their oldest foes, the Dwarves, are the subjects of the most of their hate, for they have fought over control of the subterranean reaches of the world for millenia. In recent times, the Rakash have also taken a liking to the killing of Humans, seeing them as easy and entertaining prey.

Notable Rakash[edit | edit source]

  • Ancient Rakash
    • Terefah Crestshriekeer - High Alchemist of Clan Chemicus during the Great Rat Civil War
    • Thrilk Elf-Eater - Warlord of Clan Gladius, fought the high elves

See also[edit | edit source]