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Ghoran

Ghorans are an ancient race whose ancestry is steeped in tragedy. Every aspect of ghoran physiology was designed to be perfect; unfortunately, that included “perfect taste”—their flesh-like rinds were so delicious that humans hunted them nearly to extinction. Worse, each was able to produce only one seed, adding to the precariousness of their species. Over hundreds of generations, they evolved from shambling, vine-like creatures into their current humanoid forms, but they still found themselves ostracized by humanity.

Ghorans are roughly the same size as humans, and are nearly as diverse physically, though unlike humans, ghorans can adjust their bodies’ shapes within their frames’ limits. Their “skin” is a complex layer of fibrous vines and rinds with a texture like moss-covered bark, while their faces consist of hundreds of layered petals that flush and flutter at a whim.

Each ghoran has a ghorus seed within its navel. As a full action, a ghoran can expel this seed. If planted in fertile soil and left undisturbed for 1d6 days, the seed grows into a sapling ghoran who physically mirrors the original. If left undisturbed for an additional 2d6 days, the seed grows into an oakling ghoran instead. After a sapling ghoran has been fully grown for 2d20 months, they can choose to grow into an oakling ghoran, a process that takes 1d6 weeks. Every 20 years or so, a ghoran develops a new seed, allowing the race to slowly grow its numbers.

Many ghorans are withdrawn around flesh-and-blood creatures. They often prefer the company of vesk to humans— in fact, a popular conspiracy holds that ghorans fed information about humans to the vesk. Despite these grounds for suspicion, ghoran society emphasizes the importance of community life, friendship, and companionship—all luxuries most ghorans could only dream of when they were few and hunted.