Taltzschims (Zoanthropes) are humanoids with the NATURAL, rather than magical, ability to change into a SINGLE animal, much like Zonlests (were-creatures).
Unlike Zonlests, Taltzschims are able to shift of their own free will at any given moment, without risking the beserking curse that plagues Zonelests. They are also not forced to transform on the full moon.
The history of the Taltzschims ties in closely to the Zonelests. Their origins are about to be told.
The men and women that had fallen under the Zonelest curse were mostly prideful bunch. They did not immediately seek to make recompense with Luna and the Animals that cried out to her. Those that even suggested the idea were flogged, shunned, and given evil eyes. They sought out the strongest sorcerers of their to undo their curse. Those that tried failed. The sorcerers suggested they make peace with Luna and the Animals.
They turned to their wisest alchemists for potions that would subdue the transformation. Those that tried failed. The alchemists suggested they make peace with Luna and the Animals.
They sought out aid from the other gods. Those that offered help asked too high a price. The gods suggested that they make peace with Luna and the animals.
It wasn't until years after Luna-in-the-wolf returned to the heavens and her place on the moon, and years later after doing everything that those meek voices who voiced peace in the beginning made their plan. They sent one of their youth to seek out Luna, right after the moon had been full so to give the young man ample time to travel safely. He called for her and explained the situation, what the others had done and how there were those that have sought peace with her and the animals all along.
She sent him back, telling him to spread the word that those who truly seek forgiveness shall have it. But when the young man went and preached this, he was met overall with scorn. After the next full moon, a young woman was sent on the same quest and was told the same thing by Luna. They did this 8 more times. 10 times did they try to sway everyone they could. 10 times they failed to reach their hopes of relieving the curse from everyone.
On the last night of the 10th attempt, those who appeared en mass and called to Luna were forgiven and the curse removed. Luna left with them the ability to transform as a reminder, but they would no longer be forced to change at a full moon and when they did shift they would no longer risk beserking. They were entrusted to help protect the animals from over poaching and promised to do so. Upon that promise they were named Taltzschims, to differentiate themselves from the Zonlests.
Needless to say, there was animosity when the Taltzschims returned, their curses removed. Feuds broke out, blood was shed in anger and hatred and ignorance until the two groups eventually parted ways. Over the years this history has been forgotten or softened. Transgressions between the Zonlists and the Taltzschims have been mostly resolved. Only those of the old beliefs hold grudges.
A Taltzschim can live in any location that their base race could. An elf that has become a Fox Taltzschim can live just fine in the wods, for example. There are plausible exceptions, however most Taltzschim tend to live in areas where their animal-side can feel at home.
Abilities & Weaknesses
1) A Taltzschim has three forms.
- Base Race - What you were before you were bit)
- 0% boosts that your animal form might bring. (strength, senses, etc.)
- Halfway - like an Anthro/Furry etc.
- 50% boosts that your animal form might bring.
- Animal form - Same size as the standard animal.
- 100% boosts that your animal form might bring.
2) A Taltzschim can transform at will. Unlike Zonlests, they do not risk beserking.
3) No curse means there's nothing to spread.
4) In any form You ARE weak against silver. It burns you like Iron does a Fae causing extreme and often debilitizing pain.
Being born a Taltzschim does not increase your base race's age
Varies due to transformation.
Varies due to transformation.
Typically omnivorous. However, things may change depending on what kind of Taltzschim you are. A goat Taltzschim might be able to eat some things considered inedible by others for instance.
The base race may become a half-breed, but the animal side of things cannot be.
If two Taltzschims mate, there is a 100% chance of having a Taltschims. However, it will be either the mother's type or the father's type, not a hybrid/half-breed.
If a Taltschim mates outside the race, there is a 50/50 chance of the offspring being a Taltschim. The Taltschim type of the offspring will be the same as the Taltschim parent.