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I . Introduction:
Please indulge me for a moment and pardon this long and rambling post as I reflect on my many years as Great Drake of the Xoran clan. When I first joined the Xorani clan, it became the focus of my roleplay. Although I’ve been a prominent member of the Runewarden guild (later Wardens house) as well as the Order of Phaestus and a founder of the Xanatov family, I devoted the most time and effort to the Xorans.
I’m proud everything I did when the clan became mine. The clan was active and for a time met frequently, where we discussed Xoran culture and developing a sense of identity as a race with no known history or clear ties to Achaean lore as we knew it. Real life happened, as it happens, and my time in Achaea grew shorter and shorter. If you look back at clan posts today, you will see several times I attempted to return and revive the clan to where it once was, but every time, something significant happened that pulled me right back out of the game.
I keep trying to give this clan away to someone younger, with fresher ideas, but have failed to do so for various reasons. I will be turning the clan democratic, whether or not anyone has stepped forward to take my place. This way it can be revived again and again, every time someone has the energy to take leadership.
II. Clan History:
My memory of so long ago is vague, and to the best of my recollection, Yig created the Xoran clan with a strong campaign that included attempting to persuade others to switch race so that they could join. I joined up right away and was directed to, I think it was a Yahoo! Group and perhaps another website that the clan was referring to as our library, and where we were gathering the history of the Xoran race. Curious about this, it was explained to me that we were actually writing the histories ourselves, and claiming they were histories we discovered or remembered IC. At the time, this was not unheard of. I know that other racial clans had done similar things. Around the time Yig retired, however, another player (I think his name was Nosgard?) deleted all of the content out of anger about something I no longer recall. It seemed there were no backups to be found anywhere, either.
We used referendums as a form of election back then, and I remember Diamondesce being another good leader of the clan. However, after the clan changed hands to Tsao and activity died down, he removed all the members and changed the clan to a family clan for himself. We attempted to issue him to have the clan returned, but after a lengthy back-and-forth, Tsao willingly gave the clan back, under the condition it was given to me. (I remember being passionate about the Xoran back then, and striving to get the clan back, but I still don’t understand why Tsao changed his mind and gave it to me. Still, I am grateful the clan was restored.)
When the clan became mine, I devoted all my time to it. I am even proud of the work I did back then. We had tailoring designs (some I sold in a shop of mine and I donated proceeds to the clan) and “embassies” in each of the city subdivisions (bought with the shop proceeds and owned by clan members who were citizens of said cities).
As for our “library,” the climate had changed toward using OOC sites as IC resources, so I used clan helps to write our history in. With the IC/OOC separation becoming more and more important in game, I no longer knew how to ask my Xoran to write histories, so I wrote them mostly by myself. (More about this later)
After a while, as some of you know, my OOC health took a hit and I was unable to play as well or as often as I used to. (By the way, I am doing really well right now in that regard. I am in the best health I’ve been in 20 years.) As I grew silent, so too did the clan. I am so sorry that this happened. I tried to give the clan away and even did, to Blackharp and Rynn, but it never really fully revived.
Later on, when races were given stat packs, we saw an influx of new members, and old returning members. We had new life again. We were back to developing a culture. However, without a constant new energy, this also died down.
III. IC History and Culture:
As I mentioned before, our initial culture was written by individuals just making things up. A few of our early members even claimed to be from another planet, named Xor, where we claimed we were from. After these histories were erased, I decided to take a slightly different tactic. Although I welcomed and encouraged my members to “remember and discover” our history, I ended up writing most of it. I knew that some day the staff of Achaea would have host kind of event revealing a Xoran history that might completely contradict anything we came up with. Because of that, I wrote only culture and hero stories. Things that could fit into any narrative and adapt to whatever would eventually be told about our race.
My first creation, discussed during a clan meeting, was our handful of tribes, a sort of subculture not unlike the dwarven clans. This was a big hit, and for many years, most Xoran happily joined a tribe and I added their name to the list of known members within the respective clanhelp file. My biggest regret was removing that file, which I did after I was approached by the clan asking to remove another history written by another member. I felt guilty about removing someone else’s work, even if I also didn’t quite care for it. I removed mine, thinking that was only fair. Ever since then, they’ve been asking for the tribes list back. I have most of the list of tribes and their descriptions, but I still feel guilty about what happened, so I’m not sure if I should restore the clanhelps.
Besides this, I wrote hero stories, short stories about NPCs who accomplished interesting feats in distinctly Xoran ways. I probably wrote enough to fill several novels worth, but I never wrote them into the helps. Instead, I just had Mayapple tell stories to any who would listen.
A few times, we were able to develop emotes (such as XSNORT and EMBERGLOW) that ended up being coded into the game. Most of these were done by emote contests. In clan meetings and over chat, we also came up with some of our own slang. For example, saying, “Ashes!” would be something like saying, “Damn it!” The reason, of course, is that anything that can’t survive the fire would become ash.
Eventually Sarapis returned and brought that IC lore that I knew was inevitable. I tried to be a part of the event, but I was very sick at the time. I hope that it brought a satisfying sense of identity to the Xorans.
IV. The Future of the Clan:
I am doing better now, but I think I have overstayed my time in Achaea enough as it is. I will be switching the clan to democratic and making one final push for recruitment. I will do my best to offer guidance and help the transition, but the future is for the young and energetic, and I will no longer hinder that future. I’ll be around a bit more than usual for a short while, and then will strongly be considering a permanent retirement.
I strongly encourage everyone with a character who has a Xoran identity (gems are allowed, as long as Xoran is your “home race”) to join the clan. I strongly encourage anybody who is willing to put forth the time and effort to challenge me for my position of Great Drake, and wake our sleepy clan.