Scales of War
Raw psionic energy barely contained in a body of gleaming crystalline shards
Shard minds are crystalline creatures consisting of hundreds of small shards oftranslucent green, white, red, or amber crystal assembled into humanoid form and animated by a force of pure psionic energy. Shardminds choose their forms to mimic the shapes of humanoids; some take on forms that seem more masculine, while others appear more feminine. A shardmind ‘s animating force glows dimly from within each of its component shards, emanating most brightly from where the eyes ofa natural humanoid would be. This inner light sheds dim light in a shardmind’s space, but a shard mind individual can squelch the light with an instant’s concentration-in order to hide in the dark, for example.
The crystalline fragments making up a shardmind’s body are in constant, silent motion, almost like the circulation of blood. When a shardmind is stunned or unconscious, it might lose control ofthe tight mental reins that keep its body in humanoid form, a few shards slipping free into orbits around its body until the shardmind regains control.
Shard minds are living creatures only in the loosest sense. Their crystalline bodies require no sustenance, and they don’t breathe. They don’t need sleep, though they must still rest for six hours to gain the benefits ofan extended rest. They don’t have gender and don’t reproduce, but the shardminds alive today aren’t the same ones that sprang to life during the Dawn War. Shardminds say that the Living Gate shattered into countless fragments, and each time an awakened shardmind is killed, another one somewhere in the universe stirs to consciousness.
Shardminds are fragments ofpure thought given life and substance. They are logical, emotionally distant, and naive to the ways of society in the world. Some approach life with innocent curiosity, eager to embrace the wealth of experiences the world has to offer, while others remain reserved and aloof, bearing a higher purpose in mind at all times. Though they often seem dispassionate, when a strong emotion seizes them, they experience it powerfully. For example, shardminds don’t get annoyed; they become enraged.
Although the race as a whole shares a common goal of rebuilding the Living Gate, several philosophies disagree on how to accomplish that goal. The three most important sects are the Thought Builders, the God Shards, and the Shard Slayers.