The War Goddess looked down at the smaller gynoid. Down, but only in the physical sense; there was no derision, no condescenion, no contempt in the War Goddess’s gaze upon the former Pariah, only sympathy and dignified gravity.
“You have proven yourself again and again to your clan, that is without doubt. Such as been the nature of your proving, that none among your clanswomen doubt that your former disgrace was nothing less than an artifice of the Dark One, and not your personal failing. That the Goddess Shemar has not seen to reveal to you your original name, or relight the fires that would pronounce your return to the ranks of the Warriors, is not to be seen as a lingering taint, a remaining failure of your worthiness, but instead, it is a sign that the Goddess has considered you for other things. She has seen in you another course than that of War, and She will doubtlessly reveal all to you in Her good time. “
A gauntleted hand reaches out, touches lightly on the bowed Reclaimed’s head.
“Among us, the Goddess may be closest to you, as she seems yet unfinished with you. I can only offer my simple blessings on your coming union with the Scout Aneras Forest-Runner, and my wish that it give us many strong children to our clan, but these would pale beside what the Goddess has already given you and may yet gift you with.”
Pariahs Post Civil War
Among the EShemar, the Pariahs are known as ‘the Reclaimed’, at least initially. Their primary role among the EShemar is not espionage, as originally planned by ARCHIE-3 and Hagan, but to help fill out the numbers of the Ecotroz Shemar, as camp domestics, support personnel, liaisons to outsiders, and caretakers of new NeShemar. Though regarded with some sympathy by their fellow EShemar, such is the power of suggestion of the original Shemarrian imprint that many EShemar still regard the former Pariahs with suspicion, until the Reclaimed have proven that they are indeed truly reformed(or otherwise proven inncoent of whatever charges got them branded Pariahs in the first place), and effectively taken off probation.
In time, though, it is inevitable that many(if not most) of the Reclaimed will redeem themselves in the eyes of their clanswomen. Some, through the Rites of Upgrade, will ‘return’ to some degree of their ‘former’ prowess as Warriors, whie others will find happiness in their tasks as camp caretakers and support personnel. It is also inevitable that the Reclaimed will be granted access/asked to Progen, and help create future generations of EShemar.
By the time of the advanced Three Galaxies EShemar, the former classification of Pariah/Reclaimed (with regards to physical capability, rather than social standing) is known instead as the Acolites. Roughly about 4% of Progen births will result in an Acolite. Such births are not seen as a ‘taint’ as might be expected, but are instead seen as sign that the EShemarrian deities have seen fit to confer a sort of ‘innocence’ or continued testing on some newborns, in that their place in EShemar society has not yet been predetermined (“For some, the Goddess has chosen, in Her infinite wisdom, to what they will be best at; to others she has left that decision to they themselves. It is both a terrible burden in that the they have not had the guiding hand of the Goddess always upon them, but also a great honor in that the Goddess trusts them enough to leave them to make their own choices.” as one esteemed Psi-Shamaness noted).
Acolites are regarded much as NeShemar; they are seen as ‘blanks’ at birth, and are shortly afterwards tested to find a lifepath that they are inclined towards. Many will choose Warrior, or follow the path of the Tinkers, but many others will go into the sciences, domestic support and administration, diplomacy, and other ‘softer’ professions, in support of the rest of their kin. By large the Acolites are pacifistic, non-confrontational, and fairly serene in disposition, working long hours in work that Warriors would find frustratingly boring, Tinkers would find menial, and Males would regard as distracting. This is not to say that the Acolites are lacking in combat ability; indeed, all are born with the original Pariah weapons training, and Acolites will readily take up arms to stand beside their warrior sisters and brothers in defense of their society, but for most other times they are content to serve their people in the necessary non-combat roles. In many ways, the Acolites are the ‘paperwork caste’ of the EShemar.
Besides being born without the integral weaponry and hardware of other castes, about 30% of Acolites are born of fairer appearance, and about 25% are born with some distinguishing 'birthmark', such as a pale false scar, distinctive eyes, smaller stature, or other minor physical difference. These are sometimes known as the 'Marks of the Goddess' among the EShemar.
While born lacking in integral armaments or other caste-specific hardware, Acolites DO have a higher incidence of psionics amongst them. While not as powerful as Psi-Shamanesses/Shamans, Acolites essentially are minor psychics.
Acolites created by progen will have a +1d6 P.B. and +1d4 M.A. bonus.
ISP: 1d4x10 +M.E. +2d4 per level of experience.
In addition to the standard Ecotroz telemechanics and related talents, can select 4 powers from either the Sensitive or the Healing categories, and select another one power from either of the two categories at levels 3, 9, and 12 of experience.