Rin are understood to be one of the very first species to have been created during the age of Elders and are native to Calad. Thus, their history and memories are rich with knowledge of the past. They live long lives; a single rin can live up to several centuries, while some are said to have lived over half a millennium. However most rin will live around two centuries, witnessing the life cycles of many human generations.
With this inferred blessing comes the boon of slow ageing. Whereas a human of 30 summers is considered a fully-fledged adult, more or less ending his dynamic life and settling with a bursting family, a rin is commonly assumed a youngling, just starting life.
On the same topic, a rin and a human differ in their ability to procreate. The latter is capable of leaving a vast and diverse lineage of several progenies. The first is less gifted in this regard, able to procreate once in a long span and only when the seasons bid the instance. Rin are able to bear offspring once they have reached adolescence – after they have lived over 40 or 50 summers.
Functionally, they can procreate at any time, but can produce results only once per year. As the nature of helrin and thenrin are almost the opposite, so are their phases. While thenrin most commonly take their rites during the winter solstice, the helrin try their luck in the summer.
This is connected to their elemental affinities.
As most helrin possess the fire affinity – which is tied to summer – they show signs of prime for a spell in warmest months. On the other hand, most thenrin have a latent water and ice affinity tied to the coldest times but also irrevocably interwoven with the phases of the moon.
In a sense, for a helrin and thenrin to bear a common child, they would need to gravely alter their surroundings for a tremendously long while before they could expect any fruition. As the need presented itself, accomplished alchemists managed to concoct potions that add a temporary affinity and natural orientation. Nowadays, many adventurers try these out for other ambitions and mages sneak these into their packs to add a spark to their displays.
The affinities of both parents influence a child’s, but there are times when a child is born with an affinity divergent to the parents’. This can either be unexplained or directly bound to the environment and season the child was born into.
On the topic of affinities, the rin in general are gifted with the ability to interact with mana as they are born with at least one elemental affinity, although rare exceptions do exist. Helrin prefer wielding mana through active spellcraft, weaving and forming drawn mana into respective elements through expulsion. Thenrin prefer a less spell-oriented approach, where they manipulate mana to strengthen their bodies, toughen their attacks, gain special abilities and imbue weapons.
It is noteworthy, that the rinnian physique is better suited to controlling and expelling larger amounts of mana than that of a human. Rin have an intricate channelling system coursing through their bodies. It flares up when they are in places abundant with mana, radiating like complex, luminous rivers through their skin, seemingly setting their whole being aglow. Moreover, the markings shine in a defensive response, when they near exertion from directing large amounts of mana. At this point they begin to efficiently expel the excess; however, they can still fall to soulrot if they refuse to respite. On the other hand, a human is often born with no affinity, unable to sense mana in nature. However, a human with arcane potential can learn new affinities through rigorous practice – this being nearly impossible for rin. Likewise, humans can only predict or learn where the threshold for arcane exertion lies and one usually feels the full extent of soulrot when it is already too late; the body shuts down obligating immediate help, even though it is never self-evidently adequate.
Differences in Appearances
Rin and human species appear quite similar. They are both externally built in a similar fashion, almost to the point of obscurity. There are, however, several smaller clues to their origins.
The most obvious are the ears: the rin have pointed, sharper shapes, said to be tuned to picking up many sounds the human mind cannot comprehend. Human ears are rounded and more inconspicuous.
The shades of skin, hair, and eyes that a rin can have vary greatly. The helrin usually have brighter skin with tinges of warmer hues underneath. The hair and eyes can take many colours, gravitating towards redder and lighter tones. The thenian skin, hair, and eye colour are either light or dark in their essence, but come in different pigments, saturations and tones, most commonly blueish and violet. A boon of rinian swift evolutionary capabilities is their skin adapting to the surroundings in just one or two generations, accommodating overexposure or a lack of light. In this sense, the thenian skin is ashen and void of pigment, illustrating their life underground, while helian skin is lighter and adjusted to temperate climate.
Likewise, human skin has a wide spectrum, albeit usually based on red or similar undertones. Hair and eye colours are usually less vivid than that of rin. Their skin can easily bruise from standing in the sun for too long and their evolutionary process takes several millennia to readjust to new environments.
Rin, as opposed to humans, cannot grow facial hair apart from around the eyes. They do not have much body hair except the necessary. But they do have a mane. This grows in a denser bunch from their lower backs, the sacrum, and is similarly smooth, soft, silky, and can grow as long as their hair. Of course, as this signifies their more natural ways, most rin shave it off or tie it meticulously. Most official positions demand removal and any exposure can be frowned upon, however, the young seem to be trending towards a more relaxed lifestyle, elaborating their manes or even letting them sway naturally.
On one hand, traditionalists advocate manes and urge the populace to return to true rinian ways, as this would set them further apart from humans.
Another disparity between the species is their general physiques and ability to retain and build muscle mass. Rin are usually leaner, with their statures more equal. Compared to humans, they are less able to lift heavy things without the help of mana. They are fast on their feet and agile even when out of shape, however, they are more prone to fatigue.
While it may seem that humans have numerous shortcomings, they have a great ability to learn at a quick pace, making them no less evolved or skilled in all areas they strive towards.
Thank you for reading!