The Eiyu are an ancient clan from near the dawn of the empire, contributing many scholars and philosophers to the empire. In addition, their skill as warriors, due in large part to the Twin Souls, is legendary.
Of the clans in existence in the Kentoku Archipelago, both minor and major, the Eiyu are unique. Though not nearly so old as the Umbraline, the Eiyu have existed almost since the beginning of the empire, and certainly not long after that. They have never been the most populous of clans, nor the most powerful, nor even the one with the most land, but nevertheless, it has remained in place even where others have risen, fallen, and had their renaissance. It has continued from generation to generation, regardless of any attempts to the contrary.
This is, in large part, because of what they are, and what they do. The Eiyu have been, since their inception, a clan dedicated to melding the worlds of philosophy and combat. The disciplines of Dasaka abilities are named as they are for a reason, after all. The clan is based on Okaiba, situated in the center of a modest portion of land. The clan’s headquarters is located in an artfully built chateau, with a wide open courtyard in the center for their training, and a dedicated wing for dormitories. The building is home to a significant portion of the resident clanswomen, and its Toroshu, but its most proud feature is also the one that takes up the most room; its library. The Eiyu control the largest library of ancient texts outside of the Towers of Knowledge, with subjects ranging from history to medicine to the arts and back again. Included is a comprehensive history of the clan, from the first Toroshu, a Dasaka named Sonei, to the modern day, with detailed passages explaining the art and creation of the Twin Souls.
And thus we come to the reason that the clan has survived for all of these years. The Twin Souls is a concept created, and realized, by their first Toroshu. Sonei firmly believed that the powers given to the Dasaka by Zuto Nui had a deeper purpose than mere tools, mere extensions of the mind. The most basic skill taught, Ideatalk, was far more important than the other clans gave it credit for, then or now. The mental plane was not just a convenient means of communication, it was a gateway into the very hearts of those who inhabited it, and it should be treated as such. Together she worked with another who shared her ideas to probe the furthest reaches of what the art was capable of, and their discovery would become the basis for the Twin Soul. Every being has a different feel on the mental plane, this was, and is, the very first thing that the youngest Menti learns. But it goes beyond that. It isn’t just that they feel different, what the trainers call “feel” is the brush of one spirit against another, far beyond superficial details. That feel, once one is familiar with it, can tell more in an instant than words ever could. The Twin Soul is an extension of this fact. Two Menti are partnered early in their training, and they work together for the rest of their natural lives, barring unforseen circumstances, and undergo a special training that only the Eiyu know the details of, in addition to the traditional training all Menti go through.
The result is the reason that the Eiyu are considered formidable, despite their relatively small size. The partners can tell what the other is thinking, feeling, and planning on a deep, almost instinctual level, creating a cooperation and unity unmatched by any traditional partnership. Partners of this variety have been described as two halves of one mind, acting in perfect tandem to devastating effect. A Toroshu from a clan long extinct described it thus;
”When fighting the Eiyu, it matters not how many you appear to face. You may seem to be fighting two, and you may number a dozen, but in truth, you are fighting only one. And that one is a match for any two you could send to face them.”
Outside of this training, the specialties within the Eiyu are diverse. There is no predominant choice, as all specialties work equally well with the coordination the Twin Souls provide. Soulswords, Mindarms, Sighteyes, and Willhammers exist almost in equal numbers, each using the skills they bring to the table to augment the training the Eiyu provide.
But with this training comes a philosophy. The Eiyu are, in their own words, scholars first, and warriors second. Their powers are not simply tools, they are extensions of the self, and should be treated as such. They never seek out a fight, believing it to be against the Virtues laid out by Zuto Nui, though they are more than willing to defend themselves, and others, if need be. Their atmosphere of knowledge and learning has created some of the greatest philosophers the archipelago has ever known, and some of its best scholars, as well. Any caste is accepted in the clan, from the Dashi who work the fields surrounding the crystalline chateau, to the Saihoko fisherwomen and merchants who sail the seas. In many ways, their attitude has been fortunate; despite the skill of their fighters, they could not have survived to the present day if they went around making enemies. Though not aligned to any clan, the Eiyu have long had a healthy friendship with the Umbraline, and remained neutral to the Fursic. The closest they come to animosity is the Dastana, and while there is no love lost, they are not enemies, be it in the political sphere, or physical.
The Twin Souls are a training technique unique to the Eiyu, one that was created by their founder countless generations into the past. It is an extension of Ideatalk based upon their philosophy of the importance and significance of Dasaka abilities, and the importance of treating their powers not just as tools, but as extensions of the self.
The technique occurs with two partnered Menti, paired together early in their training. The two then continue working together through the entirety of their training, and through the use of methods known only to the clan, they are taught not just to recognize each others' feel on the mental plane, but to know the subconscious signals that they give, and to be able to cooperate on a level beyond conscious thought to the point where their cooperation is almost instictual in nature. More often than not, these partners, referred to by some as Soulpartners, are paired for life, from their earliest training to even when they become Datsue, and leave the caste system entirely. The bond is so deep that these pairs have been considered by many to not be two individuals, but two halves of the same whole.
The criteria for picking these partners, the training methods employed, and the exact reason they can work so well are unknown to any outside of the Eiyu, and the only documents pertaining to the skill are kept closely protected in the Eiyu's own library, accessible only by those with the Toroshu's permission.
- Nihonei: the current Toroshu
- Saritsu, sister and Twin Souls partner to the current Toroshu
- Lorekeeper Gotsoko: Datsue, curator of the Imperial Library
- Ankora: Datsue, a dean of higher education
- Kwaiya: Librarian and book binder for ancient and religious texts
- Hanabe, Eiyu Menti
- Vinyani, Eiyu Menti
- The Eiyu Clan was created by the player Krayzikk.