Nigh

The vast majority of Noom have a single numen, but some Noom have multiple numina, or none, resulting in some of the strangest beings in the Plasm. These are Nigh (AKA: monsters, mares), and they are generally treated as the untouchables of the Plasm, tending to live in the worst parts of town, and are restricted from all but the most offensive and degrading jobs. They generally have a very hard life, through no fault of their own.

Because Nigh often result from cross-Tribe affairs, such relationships are frowned upon and derided vehemently in the same way that incest is treated in most of the Tell. These affairs happen nonetheless, and the children pay the consequences for their parents' love. Nigh marrying among their own Tatter face two prospects - children more monstrous and hideous than themselves, or the slow “devolution” of their children into powerless "humans", the latter a debatable improvement in most Noomish eyes.

Nigh tend to be Whim or Calyx, either resigned to their position (Whim) or hoping for more (Calyx). In many ways, their positions mirror those of various oppressed peoples around the world, and rumor has it that an immense revolution is being planned.

Numina: multiple
Common Rade: Whim, Calyx
Appearance: nearly human, or incredibly monstrous

There are 4 Houses within the Nigh, the Idn, the Terat, the Seicus, and the Kaam.

Idn

AKA shadows, secrets, spies

This House, part of the Nigh Tribe, is nearly an urban legend. Most Noom don't believe it exists. Only because of an Idn matriarch, who stepped forward when the Compact was broken, is anyone aware of them. In some venues, their existence is still debated hotly.

The Idn are Nigh, with multiple numina as usual, but who have been lucky enough to inherit compatible numina. They are thus inherently disguised from any but the most skilled prying eyes. The matriarch at the time of the Breaking was Poison-Nightshade Idn, the only daughter of Poison Quem and Nightshade Inchoa. Because of the overlap (nightshade is poisonous), she appeared to be Deadly Nightshade of House Holus.

Because of the horrible treatment of most Nigh, being considered untouchable by much of Noom society, the Idn take advantage of their natural camouflage. From behind the scenes, on the councils of various Tribes and Houses, and by example, they teach compassion and tolerance.

Because of this natural role, they are generally the peacemakers (albeit well-disguised ones) of the Plasm. Those in the know have doubts and suspicions regarding anyone who promotes tolerance. This naturally makes them Calyx, though rumors exist that name Idn in the Marahh. Among the more knowledgeable, these are thought to likely be double agents. Some speculate nevertheless that there are real Marahh Idn, who think that removing humans, and their tendency to racism and pack mentality, will immeasurably benefit their Tribe.

Numina: multiple, of intersecting or non-conflicting numina
Common Rade: Calyx
Appearance: like some other Tribe

Terat

AKA monsters, terrors, harrows

There are Noom who have multiple, usually more than two, numina, which unceasingly compete for ascendancy. As a result, they are the most monstrous of any Noom in the Plasm. Faces with eyes that won't stay, strange crosses of technological and animal, forms that shift from one moment to the next – these are the Terat, the largest House, by far, of the Nigh.

The Terat occupy the lowest rung of the Plasm social ladder, treated as untouchables and relegated to the worst areas of the cities, or the most inhospitable Realms. Reviled because their monstrosity offends even the strangest Shimmer or Heru, they've become masters at surviving. They're also the most artistic of all the Houses.

The Terat have developed an aesthetic of the bizarre and shifting, reflected in some of the most avant-garde art of the Tell. Their art hints at forms, or provide different shapes depending on the angle of view. Some Terat flaunt their hideous forms, embellishing them with unusual custom-made clothing, jewelry, piercings, and tattoos, all in an effort to deliberately challenge the social order.

Within mainstream Plasmal culture, most Terat are left with few vocational options. The underworld is always an option, as is the circus and carnival. A few have made names for themselves as artists, but the majority struggle to survive through odd jobs and odder vocations. As in the Tell, the Terat often have enormous families, surprising because of the difficulty of life, but also understandable. Every now and then, Noom genetics result in an Idn child, who can support a huge family of Terat. Even more rarely, a child will be born with a single numina and greater potential, and the gamble is a hope that many Terat families yield to.

Most members of this family are Marahh, and their numbers help to even the sides in the War. Having been treated so poorly for most of their lives, this is not difficult to understand. What is difficult is how the rare Calyx Terat came to this decision, and what role they can play, when their form is so repugnant that none will work with them.

Numina: multiple, usually 3 or more
Common Rade: Marahh
Appearance: horrific, changing

Seicus

AKA naughts, skeets, priests

House Seicus is the smallest House among all the Tribes by far. This is because of the simple fact that very few Noom are born without numen, the key on which the House is populated. This lack has its downsides, to be sure, including sickly constitutions, a strange place in society that limits their lives in extreme ways, and in some Realms, members of House Seicus face extremes of oppression reminiscent of the Holocaust.

Their problems are inescapable because they exude an aura that gives them away. Whoever they’re near feels uncomfortable and edgy – the Seicus just “feels” wrong, and people become more and more hostile while they remain near them. This explains in part why they’ve faced such severe harassment.

It comes as no surprise, then, that they’re often identified at a young age and whisked away to a secret monastery. There, the young Seicus are trained to develop the benefits of being born numenless. The most characteristic of these abilities is Numensight, the ability to identify and cultivate an individual’s numen. Once the numen is identified, the Seicus can cause the numen to become stronger, granting abilities and improving the health of the Noom in general. The Seicus are very choosy who they benefit with their Numensight, but they can often be found in poorer, Terat-populated areas of the Plasm, doing what they can to minimize the roiling existence of the monstrous Noom.

The House is also populated by the most powerful Maestroes in the Coil. The lack that affects their lives so greatly also gives them an ability to safely channel enormous amounts of Quiddity. Because of this, the majority of Maestroes involved with the compact have been Seicus, and it’s suspected that the House has the knowledge necessary to reinstate the Compact.

The Seicus appear human, and in fact tend to look like Buddhist monks, due to their shaven heads and robes. They can also be identified by the tattoo: a small blue ring between their brows.

Between the magical proficiency, the serenity of their lives in the monasteries, and their work with the Terat, it’s not surprising that they’re called priests. It can only be hoped that they have some salvation from the problems facing the Plasm, as their nickname and reputation suggests.

The members of this House have their own Rade and their own agenda. What this might be, no one knows, and the Seicus aren’t telling.

Numina: none whatsoever
Common Rade: all belong to the Seicus Rade
Appearance: bald, human, tattooed

Kaam

AKA two-faced, schizos

Kaam is a House of Nigh shape-shifters. By some twist of genetics, they have gained the ability to shift between human and Noom appearance, from normal to monstrous at the drop of a hat. Some were born as humans, and their monstrous sides burst forth at puberty. Others were horrifying, and with the first breaking of the voice, suddenly found themselves human.

Understandably, this is a lot to deal with, and the new Kaam usually move through a number of responses before settling down. One of the common responses is to revel in their newfound ability to cause fear, hiding as humans in school or a café, and suddenly springing a monstrous form on the patrons. Of course, this contributes to general Plasmal attitudes to Nigh.

Eventually, the teen is approached by elder Kaam and brought into the House. Like the Idn, the Kaam fight for social justice. Well, the majority do. Unfortunately, their cause is tarnished by the other side of the House, those who feel that guerilla action is sure to cause change faster than social disobedience and good works. House Kaam is a mirror of the Plasm that way, with its Calyx and Marahh sides.

The more experienced Kaam have mastered many shapes, not all of them tied to their numina. Consequently, they’re masters of disguise, and have been recruited by both of the major Rades as intelligence agents. Step by step, the state of the House becomes more and more complex, and more and more difficult to understand.

Numina: multiple
Common Rade: Calyx or Marahh
Appearance: one human, and at least one other form, usually monstrous

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