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"Proud to be loyal."

- Motto of the Scylding Clan.

The word loyalty has a lot of meanings for the Scylding, regardless of which sub-clan part they originate from. Having a history from which they draw pride and honour the Scylding aren't like many clans united with one clan leader or council governing over them. Split in various factions and groups the Scylding people are strong, but not united. Over the ages the people of the clan have been staunch allies of the Hon and Cho Clan , fighting in their conflicts at their side. While obtaining more influence and power as a whole clan, there is no united front of the Scylding. Yet.

Traits

  • Most Scylding have the affinity towards Fire Release. Though it isn't strange to see Scylding shinobi favouring Earth and Water Release.
  • Most Scylding have dark coloured hair, such as brown/black, but there have been enough that sport a hazelnut color. Freckles are also a common sight, though this is more of a superstitious belief - same as believing that every white haired person is a Hanamoto or Hon.
  • Scylding are renowned for their loyalty, willing to give their last breath to defend friend and kin.
  • Following up their clan's mascot, the favorite summoning among hunters, soldiers and shinobi of the Scylding clan is a raven.

History

The history of the Scylding clan is one of rising and fall. They may be considered natives within their current heartlands; the Scylding hail from northern regions once have a kingdom of their own. This kingdom was powerful and wealthy - sporting technological advancements beyond what most were capable of these days. Back then, the Scylding were a united people, led by mighty rulers. Those glory days are now remembered in songs and sagas as the Scylding has suffered and fallen far since then.

The Kingdom of Scyldings

The founder of the Kingdom of Scyldings, Scylda the Tall. He was rumoured to be a very large man, unmatched in brawn and intellect.

Founded centuries ago, the Scylding were a migrating force of Chonobi stock. It isn't entirely sure by historians if Scylding are the same Chonobi that arrived together with the Hon in the nowadays Framí region. What is certain is that various large groups of Scylding landed on the northern shores of the present Earth country. From there, they carved petty kingdoms out before they would become united by Scylda the Tall.

Once unified, the kingdom of Scyldings started to advance in power and wealth. The domain became incredibly advanced upon discovering various sites of some forgotten or bygone civilization before them. The studies that these Scylding did on these great sites allowed them a better understanding of the world. The architecture of grand designs became possible and wise rulers came to power as the realm continued to prosper. A few ancient sites constructed by the Scylding of yore are still standing and being used today. There are legends of the old capital in the mountain - forgotten and waiting to have its halls open again to the descendants of Scylda the Tall.

The migration of the Scyldings southwards was a journey of many perils. There are many stories of various dangers being posed and overcome - with and without losses - before the Scyldings arrived at the border of the Hon clan.

The Fall and Migration

It isn't entirely sure what caused the collapse of the ancient kingdom. Some historians, scholars and experts theorize that the enemies surrounding the dominion became too powerful and envious. Together with likely internal strife, the realm fell apart and caused several large Scylding groups to migrate southwards. From the Scylding themselves, a few other stories detail that it was the foretelling of the Oracle of Bergjlot who warned the Scylding to flee south. To then one day be united and claim their kingdom of old.

Despite the intense struggle that was wagered between Hon and Scylding clans, these two people would unite and consider each other brethren. Bound by ancient oaths, it is predicted that the world needs to end before either clan desires to break their commitments to one another.

The fall of the kingdom led to the massive migration of the Scylding people to the south - leaving only a few enclaves of Scylding people to survive in the Earth country, clinging still to this day to their traditions and beliefs. The migration to the south was exhausting and brought many dangers with it. Underneath the leadership of competent figures, the Scylding managed to reach the borders of the Hon clan. Though Scylding and Hon shared a lot of similarities already back then, it is a wrong assumption that made them immediately allies. At first, cooperation was established between the Scylding and Hons. The idea was that the Scylding would receive aid in establishing a dominion of their own. But because the Hon clan was divided into several houses that vied for power and influence amongst themselves, this led to various incidents. Eventually to an open conflict between the Scylding and Hon people.

This conflict lasted roughly three years before both sides decided that further bloodshed would provoke the wrath of their ancestors and gods. An Allthing between the two clans was organised, in which prominent leaders of both people made plans to aid the Scylding in establishing a dominion of their own. In return for their aid, the Scylding would swear brothership and alliance - willing to join the Hons in future endeavours. This alliance has prospered and stayed strong, even to this very day.

A New Home

Invading the people south of the Hon heartlands, the Scylding were merciless. They drove many natives away or forcibly assimilated them. With the aid of the Hon clan, they managed to carve out a sizeable realm out for themselves. But their unity started to fall apart. Bickering and friction began to surface as there was no common enemy or goal to keep the various Scylding clans together. Different individuals attempted to keep the clans united, but nobody managed to bring the bickering clans together. Only several times did the Scylding join as one against external threats, only to fall back in various regions that prevented a continuous, unified front.

Settled in their new heartlands, the Scylding did prosper to a certain degree. Becoming staunch allies of the Hons to their north and Cho's to the south, the state of the Scylding and their loyalty was highly valued. This value is visible in old tales, as there are many legends of both Cho and Hon in which loyal Scylding individuals appear. However, to many Taika neighbouring clans and people, the Scylding have gained a dreadful reputation as merciless people - who shoot arrows first and then willing to ask questions later.

What did cause the Scylding to differ from their ancestors in the Kingdom of old was that their heartlands were no longer fertile valleys and stoic mountains. Instead, their new heartlands were woodlands that provided many different riches and dangers. Adapting to this new environment proved the Scylding ability to endure change and overcoming challenges. Yet as prosperity seemed to return and allowing the Scylding to enjoy their new riches, a new disaster seemed to loom on the horizon.

The harsh restrictions and unfair treatment of the Fire Daimyos upon the Scylding led to various disastrous developments. The resentment and hatred that the Scylding held for the Fire Daimyos would cause some Scylding to form warbands of their own - which would assault and terrorize Taika villages as retaliation. Nearly none of these warbands or brigands were captured, leading to the belief that the Scylding can vanish whenever they desire. However, some speculate that the Cho and Hon clans were more than eager to support and provide aid to these brigands.

The Treatment of the Fire Daimyo

The formation of the Fire country is often described as a peaceful venture of the Hanamoto Dynasty capable of uniting the clans and people into one being - a smaller but yet prestigious predecessor of the Akinian empire of today. The truth is, however, far more nuanced than that. The Scylding clan was approached with an ultimatum. They were either to bend the knee to the Fire Daimyo or to have their people suffer a far worse fate. Though the Scylding attempted to unite, their strongest allies were forced to surrender - understanding the folly of fighting back and having their people put to the sword. Forced to bend the knee, the Scylding people would undergo a dark period in their history again.

The rule of the Fire Daimyo brought many restrictions upon the Scylding. The practice and traditions to honour their gods were constantly pressured, with the Fire Daimyo attempting to convert them to the Way of Fire. It is unsure why the Scylding got targetted by the Fire Daimyos in particular. Some experts theorize that it was to weaken the Chonobi alliance between the Scylding, Hon and Cho clans. However, the restrictions and almost persecution of the Scylding beliefs were just the beginning of problems to come.

More restrictions and harsh edicts were imposed upon the Scylding. A particular subject that seemed to provoke the ire of the Fire Daimyos appeared to be the prophecy of a Scylding to unite the people, becoming their king to restore their kingdom of old. While the Scylding continued to cling and hope for the prophecy to come true, the Fire Daimyos and their lackeys were far from gentle to convince the Scylding that their only ruler would be the Fire Daimyo. Several holy sites were even damaged and defiled to warn the Scylding what happened if they continued to believe their false idea of a future king of their own. This treatment led to resentment and hatred from the Scylding people to the Fire Daimyos and eventually the Taika as a whole.

The Ravens Dream, Again

The Imperial reform was something that nearly all Scylding embraced with open arms and smiles. The mere change from a Fire Daimyo to a Hon becoming empress was enough for them to give hope for fair treatment. Restrictions and harsh treatments were removed immediately upon Kiyomi Homura's ascension to the Imperial Crown. Already earning Kiyomi a lot of support and loyalty from the Scylding, this benign treatment continued and even caused many to believe that the empress was the promised ruler to unite the Scylding. Various prominent Scylding even invited the empress to join their Allthing, hoping to convince her of the ideals to retake the lands of yore - that once belonged to the old Scylding kingdom. However, to the disappointment of some, the empress would not take upon the role. Instead, she seemed to openly embrace the prophecy that a Scylding would rise and unite the clans as one united front.

These changes have allowed the Scylding to dream again of a brighter future. One where perhaps they can restore the glory of old.

Members

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As the other Chonobi clans there are many lineages to be found within the Scylding clan. Here are several known and also present lineages:

Lineage of Sigeberth:

  • Hiron Hon, jounin of Team 9 as well major general of the third division.
  • Kiyomi Homura, adopted daughter of Hiron Hon and current/first Empress of the Akinian empire - 13th generation.
  • Kazumo Scylding, genin of Team 8 and cousing of Hiron Hon - 13th generation

Lineage of Idaowa:

  • Katashi Scylding, Captain-Commander of the Sworn Swords.

Lineage of Vaugros:

  • Ling Scylding, Chosen Representative of the Scylding clan.

Military

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Traditions

The Scylding religion is much similar to their northern - region - neighbours, the Hon's. They have a wide pantheon of gods, heroes and animals that play an important part in their folklore and mythology. This does mean that the majority of the Scylding clan doesn't pray to their patron god(s) and hero(es). Instead they honor them with rituals and 'sacrifices'. Not strangers to bring sacrifices to their patron gods and heroes, the Scylding however are very strict what they find a sacrifice these days. In their old times, a sacrifice was often food or livestock. Something that had a higher value than they have now, because what is a sacrifice if it won't be missed? This leads often to the confusion of outsiders when the Scylding sacrifice coin and valuable wares to their gods and patrons. There are tales enough of thieves and ignorant outsiders who were trying their luck in fishing out jewelry, coin and other sacrifices of the Scylding of rivers and spots. Ending more than often captured or being killed by the ever watchful Scylding.

Faith

The Scylding believe and worship the Chonobi gods.

Woodland Dwellers

A member of the Woodlands Ravens. Some experts believe that the Woodland Ravens are some successors to the mysterious Nifl - the likely shinobi of the Kingdom of Scyldings.

The 'new' ancestral lands of the 'modern/present day' Scylding are primarily woodlands. Woodlands that they have defended with tooth and nail from various other rivals and enemies. Most of their traditions thus come because the majority of the clan are born and grow up in a region famed for the dense forest. The Scylding began to use guerrilla warfare with their dense woodlands, using longbows and their skills to take down an enemy from a safe distance and utilizing the surprise effect not to allow an enemy to react back adequately. This skill as deadly skirmishers has earned them praise and favour among their Hon and Cho allies.

Respect for the woodland that helped them preserve their clan has slipped into the Scylding highly favour those with the Wood Release. It isn't that common in the clan that people are born with that bloodline ability, though.

Scylding Paint

Paint is an important aspect in the present day Scylding culture. Warriors and military personnel use it to instill dread and fear among their enemies. Using symbols of old, warriors show that they fight, for personal honor and glory. Family and their future or other reasons. At festivals and weddings Scylding clan members often paint each other faces, allowing a certain kind of bonding as it allows one another to bestow good luck or such on the other. Color and symbols, each having their own symbol and meaning behind it.

  • Red is the color of energy, passion, action, ambition and determination. It is also the color of anger and sexual passion.
  • Orange is the color of social communication and optimism. From a negative, color meaning it is also a sign of pessimism and superficiality.
  • With the meaning of colors, in color psychology, yellow is the color of the mind and the intellect. It is optimistic and cheerful. However it can also suggest impatience, criticism and cowardice.
  • Green is the color of balance and growth. It can mean both self-reliance as a positive and possessiveness as a negative, among many other meanings. 
  • Blue is the color of trust and peace. It can suggest loyalty and integrity as well as conservatism and frigidity.
  • Indigo is the color of intuition. In the meaning of colors it can mean idealism and structure as well as ritualistic and addictive. 
  • Purple is the color of the imagination. It can be creative and individual or immature and impractical.
  • The color meaning of turquoise is communication and clarity of mind. It can also be impractical and idealistic.
  • The color psychology of pink is unconditional love and nurturing. Pink can also be immature, silly and girlish.
  • In the meaning of colors, magenta is a color of universal harmony and emotional balance. It is spiritual yet practical, encouraging common sense and a balanced outlook on life.
  • The color brown is a friendly yet serious, down-to-earth color that relates to security, protection, comfort and material wealth.
  • From a color psychology perspective, gray is the color of compromise - being neither black nor white, it is the transition between two non-colors. It is unemotional and detached and can be indecisive.
  • Silver has a feminine energy; it is related to the moon and the ebb and flow of the tides - it is fluid, emotional, sensitive and mysterious.
  • Gold is the color of success, achievement and triumph. Associated with abundance and prosperity, luxury and quality, prestige and sophistication, value and elegance, the color psychology of gold implies affluence, material wealth and extravagance.
  • White is color at its most complete and pure, the color of perfection. The color meaning of white is purity, innocence, wholeness and completion.
  • Black is the color of the hidden, the secretive and the unknown, creating an air of mystery. It keeps things bottled up inside, hidden from the world.

May-Day

Wells hold a particular place in the Scylding culture. On May-day, every first day of the month May, the women leave their homes early in the morning to gather wild flowers or bunches of greenery to offer to the 'sacred' well. This event is to bring fertility among the clan members as for a promising harvest as it is a sign of respect to the gods of earth and fertility.

Though this is seen as a rather serious festival, over time it has become more of a cheerful event. Now that the clan however isn't as poor as they were back in the old days, they often hold a small feast at the end of the day.

Scylding Wedding Traditions

The true Scylding wedding customs and traditions come from clear springs, the reverence of water sweet and straight from the rock and soil. Customs were inspired by the fragile beauty forest flowers, the moon light and the constant turn of seasons over the years. Under the wild and natural settings people gathered in great circles, close to the breath of the gods who sanctioned the unions. 

For the Scylding, location is critical. In their old time - from the days where they just founded their new ancestral lands - , just as today, where an actual wedding take place is imbued with significance. Scylding wedding ceremony is often witnessed by communities of friends and loved ones, including, perhaps, the yew tree. All the elements are intertwined, imbued with soul and tied to a great web of life.

Every Scylding bride and groom has to decide whether the marriage will take place in a natural setting, less touched by human hands or in a building such as a church or temple. Traditionally, weddings are hold in circles, rather than aisle. Circles are the blueprint behind life giving systems in nature. They are a symbol of wholeness and completeness, in contrast to the more linear and hierarchic perspective of religious institutions.

The raven is the most important symbol and spirit for the Scylding. It is uncertain when the Scylding adopted the raven as their mascot and symbol. Some believe it is a raven that led Scylda to the shores - from which he established the Kingdom of Scyldings. Others tell the tale of ravens guiding the Scylding migration southwards - away from their crumbling kingdom.

The Feast of the Ravens

One of the traditions that the Scylding claim to have survive from the time of their ancient ancestral land. On the end of December, usually a family of the Scylding clan decorate a tree of their liking. It is decorated with symbols that have a meaning for the Scylding. Moons, stars and the sun, but it isn't rare to see that members of the clan decorate the tree of their choosing with items of loved ones that died in that year. Items and belongings that neither fit or are capable of hanging in the tree are often placed around it.

At the end of the old time of darkness - just before the seasons of Spring and Summer (called 'the time of light' by mostly the old Scylding ) - the family remove the decorations and items from the tree and burn the tree. Some families however decide to burn the decorations and items - mostly made from greenery and stuff that can be missed- though this is rather a new turn in the tradition. After burning the tree, the family then gather together with their kin, spending time together.

The fact is called 'The Feast of the Ravens' mainly because the raven is one of the most important spirits in their pantheon. Many tales, sagas and legends have ravens in them - often as guides or witty aids to the protagonists.

End of Dawn

Seen often as a dire time, the Scylding clan, prepared as best as they could for the 'time of darkness' : Autumn and Winter. Before Autumn, the Scylding clan would herald the coming of the 'darkness' with ritual sacrifices. In old times, this meant often food and livestock. In the present days this has been more shifted towards coin, jewelry and other valuable items. The spots and locations for the Scylding clan to do this varies. Where one community of the Scylding clan throw these sacrifices into a river or stream, another community bury their sacrifices. In essence it is to honor and praise the gods of the earth, in return allowing another prosperous bounty for the next 'time of light'.

Scylding Factions

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." - A Sarutobi saying.

Sarutobi Region.png

Ever since the fall of the old Scylding realm, the clan hasn't enjoyed the prospect of unity and a wise ruler. Fallen apart in various clans that bicker and vie for power among themselves, the Scylding are a shadow of what they could be and were. Prominent Scylding throughout history has been close in unifying the various clans but never long enough to establish a lasting rule or convince all the clans to remain united. These clans don't differ much from others as they follow most traditions and honour the same gods and spirits. The clans meet now and then in assemblies called Allthings. During these meetings, there aren't many topics on which the leaders of these clans agree - but it gives them a sense of unity, even it is fragile.

The Scylding clans are:

Relations

Hon-Sarutobi.jpg

“Friends ask you questions; enemies question you.”

 As the Homura dynasty is the one ruling over them, the Scylding have a stark loyalty towards the crown. It certainly has invoked some interest as it seems that Imperial dynasty has some traces of Scylding in it. What further helps their interest and loyalty is that the Homura Dynasty has strong ties to the Hon clan. Seeing that the Imperial line follows the adoption of Kiyomi by Hiron, most Scylding regard the Homura dynasty as a noble Scylding branch.

Ancient rivals and old allies, one could call the relation between the Scylding clan and the Hon clan to be the usual product of when two (sub-)cultures clash and then learn more about each other. With similarities between the two clans, the Scylding respect stems also forth from their history and long-standing friendship/alliance together. A small community of the Scylding clan can be even found within the Hon Estate and heartlands.

The Cho clan are considered like the Hons as old friends of the Scylding clan and culture. With a long history of cooperation after settling down in their current wood and hill-lands, the Scylding and Cho have enjoyed a prosperous cooperation for a long time.

Remaining true to their saying, the Scylding remember the fact that the Uchiha clan allowed a community of the Scylding clan into Konohagakure. This allowed the Scylding to learn more about the newly developments that the world was experiencing with countries starting to rise and pushing the time of warring clans to an end. The Scylding look with respect and overall favorably towards the Uchiha clan, even though they find themselves more on common ground with the Hon's. 

Wary, is what the Scylding are towards the Hyuuga clan. One can argue that this stance is because the Hyuuga 'policy' is the opposite of the Scylding clan. While they aren't in any manner over-negative or hostile towards the Hyuuga clan, the Scylding clan are mainly wary because of the attention the Hyuuga 'demand'. Something that makes the Scylding hesitant to align themselves with the Hyuuga clan- not surprising if one tries to understand the Scylding clan.

From the viewpoint of the Scylding clan, the Nimatsu clan are looked with a wary opinion. The fact that they had plotted against those who the Scylding are faithful towards, there is also the fact that the Nimatsu clan comes from a region that is outside the Fire Province that supports the wary stance of the Scylding clan towards the Nimatsu.

The Hyuzu as Sanosuke clans enjoy the respect from the Scylding people. Despite many Scylding never meeting a Sanosuke or having many dealings with the Hyuzu, the two other clans are considered distant kin. Some legends and stories state that the Scylding and Hyuzu are from the same Scylding kingdom of old, reinforcing the idea the ideal of friendship.

After the first meeting of leaders and representatives of the clans in the Empire at Keishi, the message of Ling Scylding has made it clear that the Kusanagi aren't viable contacts - yet. The fact that the Kusanagi have slighted the leader of their ancient and close friend, the Hon, the Scylding clan has chosen to withdraw from interacting much with the nomads. It is going even that far that they rather forbid any Kusanagi from entering the woodlands, hills and meadow that the clan proclaim as their home.