History of Kalerre and Wemics
Wemics treasure their stories and records as dragons treasure gems and gold: possessed and prized, counted and recounted, the epics of history bind a roving people together and ensure commonality of culture and tradition.
Cycles of History
Age of Joy
About 900 years ago, there were only a few Wemics, but those few -- the fathers and mothers of all Wemics -- lived happy lives with the holy ones. The Wemics grew in spirit, and they learned the words of destiny, but they did not know what the words meant.
Age of Expansion
About 850 years ago, Wemics spread out across the Land. They learned about hunting, about flint knapping and weaving, and about story telling and poetry. If there was a conflict, both parties departed, spreading out farther across the fertile savannah.
Age of Betrayal
About 600 years ago, the land was getting full, and game was scarce. Discord came to the people, and Wemic fought Wemic to control territories and hunting grounds. Some Wemics fled to the harsh badlands near the mountains. In later years, this was seen as the plan of the evil lord Ice to corrupt Wemics as it had Humans.
Age of Warmth
About 550 years ago, the blessed Vauwerf discovered how to tame the great aurochs, so that the beasts could be herded. Vauwerf also taught enlightenment, so that he filled the peoples' empty stomachs and their empty souls.
Age of War
About 300 years ago, corrupt, foul Humans from the north attacked and killed many Wemics. After great losses, the Wemics learned the ways of war, they united under one King. Under their first King, Eotal, the Wemics drove the Humans back into the swamp.
Age of Knowledge
About 250 years ago, Old King Eotal founded the only Wemic city, Mivak, as a seat for his Kingdom and a gathering place. After his time the Wemics enjoyed a long peace and came to know the Land and their place in it.
Age of Change
As Kingdoms and Honor begins, much is in flux with the modern age. New Humans have sailed to the Land of Kalerre, where they dwell away from Wemics on the west coast. But a number have visited as explorers and merchants, bringing metal tools and many other wonderous goods. And a number of Wemics have visited them, some even returning from voyages far over deep seas.
Wemic Culture in Kalerre
A Nomadic Life
In the Kingdom of Kalerre, Wemics tend huge herds of aurochs, which they use for meat, milk, leather, fur, cloth, bone, and horn. Because aurochs graze the land hard, they must be guided from place to place. Wemics live in leather tents, moving their herds to better pasture. Only those Wemics who live in holy places or in Mivak, the capitol, have settled lives.
Where Humans have devoted themselves to material advancement, Wemics have focussed on spiritual advancement. Especially in the Kingdom of Kalerre, Wemics are morally and ethically sophisticated. They do no needless harm to living things; they rejoice in helping others; and they reject pain and corruption in all its forms. But Wemics are not naive, foolish goody-goodies -- they enjoy competition, they have a deep love of the hunt, and they are remorseless and vigilant in opposition to the works of evil Ice. "Wild" Wemics who live outside the Kingdom are not as spiritually advanced.
Wemics are Stone-Age people: they are a low-tech folk and have not mastered the art of metalworking. They use flint, bone, leather, and wood to make weapons, tools, and everyday objects. They know of gold, which washes down from the mountains, and which is prized for fashioning into hair beads. They also know the arts of weaving, working leather, and firing clay for pots and vessels.
Society and Government
Wemics group themselves into extended family groups called prides. Each pride owes fealty to a clan, and each clan, to the King. Every three years there is a clan conclave, and every nine years, a royal conclave. These conclaves serve many functions, including trading goods, visiting friends and family, competing in contests, and exchanging members of prides and clans. Clan chiefs, and kings can also call for musters to form armies when they are needed. In between conclaves, bards bring news and culture from pride to pride.