Thursday, December 29, 2011

What Valja Want

Things a Valja Wants...
Don't know what a Valja (Val-Jah) is? No problem. Click over to this post and you can find out all about them. There's even a Paper Miniature over there.
  1. Companionship. Valja can only really, truly perceive the universe they are experiencing through others. On their own, they are deaf, dumb and blind and cannot play pinball worth a damn. They need companions, not just as 'seeing eye dogs,' but as filters for sorting out the details and complexities of experience.
  2. Stories told by master story-tellers. A good tale, well told, will enthrall a Valja more effectively than a Charm. They have been known to hover in a trance-like state completely oblivious to everything else while a raconteur kept the Valja's attention upon a dramatic reading or re-enactment of some historical drama or folktale.
  3. A night at the opera. Literally. But only in good company.
  4. Bad jokes, especially the kind that relate to bodily functions which the Valja find completely esoteric, obscure and thoroughly ridiculous. But then a Valja excretes its bodily wastes in the form of tightly-packed pellets that they leave in-between walls or in discrete cavities by way of their native Passwall ability.
  5. A good glutton who is also a gourmand. The Valja are starved for experience, and gustatory excess intrigues them, as does the very peculiar relationship between chemistry and sensation such as taste. They are puzzled by spices and simply enthralled with the recitation of recipes. The strange emotional-symbollical-mathematics (a weird experiential calculus) that the Valja use for evaluating all things has never previously accounted for taste, seasoning, or enjoyment of food, opening up entirely new areas of conjecture and exploration for those Valja inclined to dabble in such nutritionally-oriented realms of esoteric inquiry.
  6. Bar hopping. Valja enjoy migrating from one tavern to another, so long as they are surrounded by a suitable coterie of body-guards and fellow aesthetes who can both protect it and guide it and serve as interpreters of what is observed or encountered. It is not uncommon for a Valja to engage the services of a few down-on-their-luck sailors or other such types to take it out for a night on the town or to go wandering through the seedy underbelly of the less reputable parts of town.
  7. Recitations of poetry. The Valja cannot process poetry. At all. It affects them oddly, disorienting them and causing a reaction not unlike getting drunk. Valja will sometimes discover new emotions, develop fresh obsessions or even exhibit new powers of perception or awareness under the influence of poetry.
  8. Sensuality. Valja are extraordinarily embryonic in more than just their gross outward appearance. They are innately hyper-tactile creatures, but most are completely unaware of it, often sublimating their need for touch and contact by their observational efforts. But once a Valja discovers their own capacity for tactile perception they begin to change, to develop and grow into something other than the usual pupae-stage. The first sign of this transformation is when the Valjas manipulative flipper-pincers become more hand-like and a secondary cartilaginous skeleton begins to form from their finger-tips back through all their body. There are rumors that those Valja so affected grow to become Weavers, but this is vigorously disputed by the Valja and has never been proven.
  9. Gambling. Valja love gambling, but are incredibly bad at it, from the point of view of the gamblers. Instead of trying to win or to beat the odds, a Valja is more interested in riding the waves of excitement and focused attention that surround this curious social enterprise. Some casinos will welcome Valja into the outer salons and open games as they have a tendency to skew probabilities to the house's favor, thus driving more serious patrons to the higher-stakes private amusements. More than one Valja has run-up a substantial line of credit at one or more houses of gambling as a 'cooler.' More than one such Valja has also been brutally beaten and sometimes killed by broke gamblers who have blamed these creatures for their losing streaks.
  10. Certain young and impressionable Valja have, from time to time, entered into dubious arrangements with various scholars, sorcerers and others to serve as companions, special assistants or even familiars for contractually-agreed-upon terms. The Valja develops a deeper than usual bond with their master, granting them a suite of enhanced cross-planar sensory abilities and allowing the Valja to learn, to really and actually learn through an osmotic-like process of knowledge assimilation. Given enough time, a Valja might learn to read, and a spell-caster might learn a wide array of transplanar secrets essential to their overall work.
  11. Rings. Valja are non-materialist and tend to eschew clothes, jewels or even money, but they are intrigued by enchanted rings and will often attempt to collect as many of the things as they can find or acquire. A Valja can wear dozens of rings at any one time, but only eight in any one space, shifting any excess rings across the planes/worlds to their alternate selves. Likewise a Valja can switch-out any one ring for another in their possession with a moment of concentration.
  12. They Don't Want To Grow Up. Valja are precocious, everything is just beginning to open up for them now and they fear, even loathe the thought of giving up their new-found awareness and circles of associates and friends. More and more Valja are seeking ways to forestall their inevitable transformation into the Pupae-stage of development. For every potion of longevity that a Valja ingests, they can hold-off the transition to Pupae-stage for 2d10 years. It is also rumored that clerical healing spells have some sort of transition-delaying effect, but the details are unclear.

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