Shadows of Esteren: The Gaes of Tulg
Feondas are perhaps the single most important feature of the setting. Despite being fairly rare (though becoming more common in the recent years…), they are fundamental to the way people see the world. They are the monsters of the setting, and range in size from rats to huge beasts, especially back in the legendary time of Aergewin, although most of them have a more-or-less humanoid shape. On the other hand, they may also resemble different animals or even plants. Want they all have in common is a burning hatred for mankind and that their bodies are formed at least partly of moss, rock and/or wood. Many are venomous, almost all are very strong and many also exhibit supernatural abilities. Some demorthen theorise that the feondas are a creation of spirits who either want to rid the world of humans or built them as a counter-balance, while adherents of the Temple see them as demons attracted by an excess of emotion and vices. They are frequently single monsters but form the biggest threat when they form groups led by leaders of some sort, when they can ravage villages, outposts and even in some notable cases in history, entire cities.
The existence of feondas, which get more common the further ones gets from inhabitation, are why children are taught from childhood never to venture outside their villages alone, and even adults do so only very rarely. The adults that do brave the world alone tend to be exceptional individuals like demorthen, knights, messengers and the like. Because of their ever-present (if rarely seen) threat, all inhabitations are built with fortifications of some sort. On the other hand, there are always rumours – and historically, they have been proven true from time to time – of feondas also lurking inside towns and cities, especially in sewers and other such obscured places. This common threat necessitates a level of solidarity, especially in smaller communities, which is one reason for the existence of the damathairs who take care of the children. Almost all children, whether boy or girl, is taught some skill at arms for protection and many places have a conscription that necessitates militia service for randomly chosen individuals to patrol the roads and inhabit strategically places outposts.