An asherati might be mistaken for a thin human under some circumstances—at least until the asherati’s rust-red skin begins to glow with a light all its own, or until he dives headlong into the nearest sand dune, disappearing without a trace.
Asheratis are a geographically established people who live below the sands and dusts of suitable wastelands, rising to the surface to hunt for food, socialize and trade with other races, and make war upon their enemies. As merfolk are to the sea, asheratis are to the sands.
Personality: Asheratis are a quiet people, given to reflection and long retreats from the presence of their fellows. However, every asherati acknowledges the value of community and fellowship, and each retreat is followed by a return to a sand-shrouded village where friendships are renewed and the needs of the community are met.
Physical Description: An asherati appears as a humanoid with smooth skin the color of rust. An asherati can make its skin glow as if with an inner fire, giving off a piercing illumination that suffuses through sand. An asherati has no body hair and eyes the color of ivory. The lithe asherati is a graceful swimmer of the dunes, and thus eschews excessive clothing or equipment, wearing only minimal, skin-hugging garments for modesty’s sake. Some asheratis wear tight leather armor, streamlined so as not to hinder their progress through the sands.
A typical asherati stands between 5 and 6 feet tall and weighs about 170 pounds.
Relations: Asheratis delight when nomads, caravans, or travelers of almost any race appear in the sands above their homes—by day, asherati merchants trade their wares, while at night, asherati rogues silently ascend and try their hands at pilfering. Trade continues despite this behavior, because no one can come close to replicating the delicate asherati sand sculptures, which can fetch large prices in cities far from the desert.
Asheratis tolerate other established races of the wastes, grudgingly admitting that each has found a niche. The asheratis live below the sand and the other races above. Still, sometimes conflict erupts or potential feuds smolder just below the surface.
It is not unknown for caravans moving through the desert to hire an asherati or two to act as guides and scouts. Especially adventurous asheratis have left the wastes entirely, seeking their fortunes in completely alien lands.
Alignment: Asheratis share a common concern for one another’s welfare and are, therefore, good. Observing no specific rules when it comes to behavior, and having a proclivity toward thievery, asheratis are usually chaotic.
Asherati Lands: The trackless, changing waste seems an inhospitable location to claim, with the burning sun by day and frigid cold at night. That’s why asheratis claim the lands below, living beneath the sand as if it were water. Under the cover of sand are their homes, communities, and even a few great cities of striking architecture. The interior of every buried building is hollow; the air is clear, and asheratis live in a way not unlike that of common humans. Cleverly constructed “sandlocks” in the floors of their homes allow asheratis to move into and out of buried buildings without disrupting the equilibrium between sand and open space.
In asherati cities, families hold the power. Powerful, wealthy, and well-respected families are responsible for the outlook of the local populace, and are referred to as the First Families. The First Families share power in a council, and truly great families are sometimes important in more than one village. Since family is such an important aspect of asherati social life, bad behavior on the part of a single family is often tolerated for far longer than in most other civilizations.
Far-flung asherati towns are usually made up of just two or three families, all working together to build their community. Usually such colonies are built to expand trade. Others are secretly established in sandy areas that abut more temperate regions to serve as a base for larceny.
Religion: Many asheratis give homage to Solanil, whom they view as responsible for building the first sand city to shelter the asheratis when they arrived in the wasteland. Particularly zealous asherati worshipers see themselves as the “seeds” that the deity has planted, just as she encourages the planting of seeds so there will be more food in the waste.
Language: Asheratis speak their own language and Common.
Names: Asheratis have given names and family names.
Male Names: Amhapar, Het, Iputhut, Iu-same, Khankhe, Menefer, M’ut, Nament, Tauah.
Female Names: Abesukh, Aned, Ankheru, Djede, Kher-ra, Nemenmo, Reht, Shis.
Family Names: Ambera, Atinani, Faihayl, Habah, Huridah, Imtimah, Manah, Nadeeha, Najeema, Nazihar, Nimah, Rawthay, Reedayl.
Adventurers: Every asherati has some measure of adventurous spirit, no matter how deeply hidden. It would be hard to name an asherati who did not try his hand at a minor bit of thievery for the fun and excitement such behavior promises. It is not unheard of to find full-time asherati adventurers, though such folk usually leave the sands of their birth far behind, finding noble quests in the far corners of the world.

Asherati Racial Traits

  • Medium: As Medium creatures, asheratis have no special bonuses or penalties due to size.
  • Asherati base land speed is 30 feet.
  • +1 Natural Armor: An asherati’s skin is thick, so it can stand up to the scrape of sand.
  • Natural Dryness (Ex): Asheratis drink water, but they are very dry creatures. To survive, they need to drink only one-quarter the amount of water per day that humanoids of their size normally require.
  • Sandswim (Su): As a merfolk is to the sea, an asherati is to sand, ash, dust, and even softsand (but not slipsand, packed dirt, or rock). An asherati can sandswim through such materials at his land speed while wearing light armor or carrying a light load. His speed drops to 5 feet if an asherati wears heavier armor or carries a medium load. An asherati cannot make any headway through the sand while carrying a heavy load. An asherati breathes normally while under the sands. This supernatural ability doesn’t allow an asherati to breath in mediums other than sand, dust, or ash, nor does it allow an asherati to hold its breath longer than normal in water or dangerous gases.
  • Body Lamp (Su): An asherati can make his skin glow at will, providing bright light out to 60 feet and shadowy illumination out to 120 feet. In a medium of loose soil, such as sand, dust, or ash, a peculiar quality of the light allows an asherati to make out solid objects up to 60 feet away. Under the sand, this light is sufficient for navigation and general identification of objects, but not for reading, recognizing individuals, or other similar feats of finer perception. This ability does not allow an asherati to see invisible creatures or creatures with concealment more easily than normal. Other creatures in the sand with an asherati do not gain this special sight, but they can see the sand take on a warm, orange glow. Once per day, as a free action, an asherati can bring his skin up to full brilliance so rapidly that it can dazzle all creatures within 30 feet for 1 minute. Creatures can avoid this effect with a successful Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 the asherati’s character level + his Cha modifier).
  • Heat Endurance: Asheratis gain Heat Endurance as a bonus feat.
  • Weapon Familiarity: Asheratis treat the eagle’s claw as a martial weapon rather than an exotic weapon.
  • +2 racial bonus on Move Silently and Hide checks (an asherati cannot Hide while his skin glows). If in a sandy area, an asherati receives an additional +2 racial bonus on Hide checks.
  • Water Vulnerability: Asheratis hate being too wet, and their dry bodies absorb water rapidly when they are submerged. If completely wet, an asherati takes a –1 penalty on all attack rolls, ability checks, and skill checks. If an asherati is immersed in water, he cannot hold his breath and must immediately begin making Constitution checks to avoid drowning.
  • Automatic Languages: Asherati, Common. Bonus Languages: Bhuka, Goblin, Giant.
  • Favored Class: Rogue. A multiclass asherati’s rogue class does not count when determining whether he takes an experience point penalty for multiclassing.
  • Level adjustment +0.

Starting Ages
Adulthood: 20 yrs.
Barbarian, Rogue, Sorcerer: +1d4
Bard, Fighter, Paladin, Ranger: +1d6
Cleric, Druid, Monk, Wizard: +2d6

Aging Effects
Middle Age: 45 yrs.
Old: 62 yrs.
Venerable: 89 yrs.
Maximum Age: +3d10 yrs.

Random Height and Weight Base Height Height Modifier Base Weight Weight Modifier
Male 5' +2d10 70 lb. x(2d4) lb.
Female 4'9" +2d10 65 lb. x(2d4) lb.
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