Biology · Races

Hujing

Overview

Hujing (or Jiuweihu) are a magifauna subspecies of red fox and the henge descendants of once natural foxes who accrued magical power, culminating in longer lifespans, intelligence, and preternatural powers. Their main distinguishing feature is multiple tails in their definitive form. They are often tricksters, with motives that vary from mischief to malevolence, but some act as faithful guardians, friends, even lovers.

Quick Species Profile
(Vulpes vulpes jiuweihu) “red nine tailed fox”
Life Expectancy
Average: 900 years
Max: 1500 years
Average Height: canid– 45–90 cm (18–35 in), humanoid– 170.7 cm (5 ft 7 in)
Average Weight:  canid– 2.2–14 kg (4.9–30.9 lb), humanoid–  68.6 kg (151.2 lb)
Creature Type: Henge Magifauna (animal; humanoid)

Biology

Appearance

Hair: Red, Auburn, Brown, Black, Grey
Eyes: Blue, Amber, Gold

A hujing has two forms—that of a typical fox and a humanoid.

Their fox form has the same dimensions and appearance of natural red foxes, although some will have multiple tails up to nine. They are covered with a downy coat of auburn or red fur, although more exotic coloration is possible.

A hujing’s humanoid form will resemble a typical human, homin, elf or amazoness and tends toward quickness and lithe beauty. Occasionally it will retain a fox attribute which causes him or her to be discovered, like a fox tail. However, humanoid foxes do not typically sport fox ears, fox eyes, unusual coloration, or any other unmistakable markers unless they intentionally do so. In both forms they possess golden, amber, or brilliant blue eyes.

Physiological Traits

Fluffy Ears: Hujing ears sport a fluffy filling protecting their softer tissue from wind, dust, and insects. While it somewhat reduces their ability to hear quiet noises, it gives them exceptional detail on what they do hear. This is an advantage for them where it comes to discerning the nature of any sounds they hear in the wilderness as well as in learning about the exact pronunciation of arcane words, where subtle differences in height and frequency of the voice may have a great impact on the efficiency of the spell casted. They are capable of locating sounds to within one degree at 700–3,000 Hz, though less accurately at higher frequencies.
Low Light Vision:  Behind the light sensitive cells lies another layer called the tapetum lucidum which reflects light back through the eye. This doubles the intensity of images received by the hujing. Their eyes glow green when light is shone into them at night.
Keen Smell: Hujing have the same great sense of smell as natural foxes, which is better than many species but pales compared to inugami.
Multiple Tails: Hujing tails are not only used as a means for balance and support when moving, to provide warmth in cold environments, but also serve as emitter for their personal scent. Lastly, hujing tails also function as magical catalysts, just like a fairy‘s wings. It is possible for an individual to gain more tails over time as their bodies capacity for magic power increase, causing one tail to not be sufficient as a magic manipulator anymore. Similar to how a body grows more muscle tissue when the present muscles are unable to handle the stress put onto them, the body will grow more and larger tails, though they max out at nine. Naturally, growing a new tail is infinitely more difficult than growing more muscles and thus it takes a hujing a very long time to accomplish the addition of even one tail.
Scent Glands:  Hujing possess scent glands, mostly in their crotch area and around the base of their tails, radiate a pleasant scent that serves as a means to identify each other, notify of their sexual readiness and attract potential partners. It is generally developed during adolescence and slowly recedes upon entering their old ages. While the scent is discreet most of the time, higher concentrated doses may actually work similar to aphrodisiacs and drugs, causing prolonged exposure to their scent to result in actual psychic or physical addiction. Its effectiveness varies heavily between different hujing though, as many factors such as genes, sexuality, age and size come into play.
Enhanced Intelligence/Wisdom as their age increases. They develop a deep understanding and realization of concepts, people, things, events or situations, resulting in the ability to apply perceptions, judgements, and actions while keeping these understandings.

 

Biomagical Attributes

Illusion Glamour: Hujing are innate illusionists. To them, their illusion is as real as anything else around them and they manipulate mana to make them happen. A hujing who uses illusion to appear human *is* human, and can talk, act, make love, and sire children while the illusion exists. A hujing who transforms a staff into a snake, creates a snake who can crawl, bite, and kill. The hujing, using this glamour, can make objects, weapons, people, homes, and even manipulate the landscape to suite their needs. One is capable of creating illusions and manipulating the landscape in a small vicinity, but when they gather their collective resources, whole cities can be made.

Foxfire Manipulation: Hujing can accumulate a lot of PK to generate their own life force as illusionary fire that consumes no air, burns no fuel and creates no smoke. While this fox fire is mainly used for mesmerizing viewers it can also burn those that believe it to be real as their mental power gives the flames the power to do so.

Mind Control: Hujing are adept in using their foxfire to put those who watch it in hypnotic trances. This is a form of remote possession, and a hujing can cause them to see anything the fox wishes, or overlook things the hujing wants them to. Once control has been established, the victim is held until someone can break the psychic connection of their fire.

Shapeshifting: This ability is gained once they pass fifty years of age. Hujing have two forms:
1.A typical fox, possibly with extra tails that can walk on two legs or dress in clothing.
2.A hujing can assume the appearance of a specific single human of the same sex. The hujing always takes this specific form when using this ability however the form can be modified to appear as another humanoid like Homins, Elves, or Amazoness (if female).

Regeneration: External wounds, including fractured bones and deep burns, heal at a much more accelerated rate, disregarding severity and lost limbs are regenerated quickly or can be reattached. Minor damaged internal organs may heal, but take more time to heal and nerves may remain damaged.Tumorous cells may actually be multiplied via regeneration as they are considered living cells.

Fox Ball: Hujing can create small balls of focused psychic power materialized into a ceramic sphere. These balls look like small, white spheres that can easily be mistaken for a child’s toy. Young hujing enjoy playing with this ball, and use it as a focus for some of their magics.

General Diet

Their diet is the same as their counterparts, natural foxes. This means they are opportunistic omnivores that hunt live prey. Their diet is largely made up of small, mouse-like rodents like voles, mice, ground squirrels, hamsters, gerbils, woodchucks, pocket gophers and deer mice. Secondary prey species include birds, rabbits and hares, porcupines, raccoons, opossums, reptiles, insects, other invertebrates and flotsam (marine mammals, fish and echinoderms). On very rare occasions, they may attack young or small deer and moose.
Hujing readily eat plant material and in some areas, fruit can amount to 100% of their diet in autumn. Commonly consumed fruits include blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, persimmons, mulberries, apples, plums, grapes and acorns. Other plant material includes grasses, sedges and tubers. Hujing often cache excess food, burying it for later consumption, usually under leaves, snow, or soil.

Reproduction

Hujing that reproduce with their own kind (either hujing or natural foxes) make fox-kits who gain intelligence faster and at a higher level than natural foxes.

Hujing who reproduce with humanoids in this way will have hanyou offspring that typically appear as their humanoid parent but will have select hujing abilities.

 

Lifespan and Growth

Before the age of 50, potential hujing lack magical abilities but have high intelligence and can comprehend speech. As such many before this age, may serve as a familiar to a mage for protection and to learn reproducible magic.

A fox’s powers increase as its age increases, and the number of its tails also increase as a sign of age, but the two aren’t directly related.

Hujing acquire power with centuries of age but are not deathless. Hujing can often live a lifespan of 1500 years, before they are likely to die.

 

History

The Hujing began as natural foxes who a little bit more clever than normal. They happened to find a young Shenlong resting who was carrying a few scrolls and food. Unaware of its significance at the time, the few foxes stole some of its rations and few copies of the scroll. These foxes were under the command of a diety known as Inari. The diety discovered that the scroll outlined the details to elevating creatures into magical beasts like the Shenlong. Testing this on his foxes, they became the first of the Hujing race.

Generations of Hujing pass, some moved on to individual tribes that fight amoung another. A leader within the kitsune tribes them is born who unites the various hujing groups to establish the nation of Wakoku and the Yokai culture.

Yokai Culture

Soon after establishing their home nation, the hujing expanded their nation into an empire by traveling to new regions. They increased their ranks by using the scroll to elevate various natural animals into henge so that they could increase their ranks. They also recruited a few spirits and faye into their culture as well. With these tactics, the Yokai Empire became the largest land empire in the history of Kaf.

After the passing of their leader the empire went to his sons which lead to a lot of infighting. The great empire split into four khanates which had weaker influence than the original empire. During the Ghulat Wars the Yokai khanates, supported the other Kaf forces like the Faerie Courts and the Pantheons against the Ghuls and demonic beings. After the wars, brought an apocalyptic state to the world, the khanates collapsed. As civilizations recovered, Yokai way of life revived among Hujing as well among those they interacted with before.

Culture

Habitat:
wooded areas, prairies, deserts

Provisioning:
Foraging, small scale horticulture

Ethnotypes

Huxian are fox henge whose various aspects like clothing, art, language and architecture resemble Chinese culture. Their style of clothing is based on the traditional Chinese clothing such as Hanfu, Changshan, and Qipao. Most live within the nation of Jianghu.

Kitsune are fox henge whose various aspects like clothing, art, language and architecture resemble Japanese culture. Their style of clothing is based on the traditonal Japanese clothing such as the Kimono. Most live within the nation of Wakoku.

Gumiho are fox henge whose various aspects like clothing, art, language and architecture resemble Korean culture. The clothing they seam is based on the Hanbok, traditional clothing of Koreans in the Joseon period. Most live within the nation of Gojosen.

 

Spirituality

Hujing are devout followers of the Youkai faith, the ethnic religion of their culture.  It is defined as action-centered, focused on ritual practices to be carried out diligently, to show respect to the various spirits for good fortune. Youkai has no founder, no official sacred scriptures, and no fixed creeds, but it has preserved its main beliefs and rituals throughout the ages.
Purity is at the heart of a Hujing’s understanding of good and evil. Impurity in Youkai refers to anything which separates them from spirits, and from musubi, the creative and harmonising power. The things which make us impure are tsumi – pollution or sin. Hujing does not accept that sapient beings are born bad or impure; in fact their values state that they are born pure, and sharing in the divine soul. Badness, impurity or sin are things that come later in life, and that can usually be got rid of by simple cleansing or purifying rituals. Pollution can be physical, moral or spiritual. ‘Tsumi’ means much the same as the ‘sin’, but it differs from sin in that it includes things which are beyond the control of individual beings and are thought of as being caused by evil thoughts or spirits. In ancient Youkai, tsumi also included disease, disaster and error. Anything connected with death or the dead is considered particularly polluting. Because ritual rather than belief is at the heart of Youkai, the people themselves don’t usually think of Youkai specifically as a religion – it’s simply an aspect of Yokai life. This has enabled Youkai to coexist happily with certain beliefs for centuries as Hujing of various tribes also have beliefs and philosophies along side Youkai. Huxians are generally Toaists, Kitsune are also Buddhists, Gumiho are syncretic Deists.

Gender/Family

Though hujing are largely monogamous, DNA evidence from one population indicated large levels of polygyny, incest and mixed paternity litters. The average litter size consists of four to six kits, though litters of up to 13 kits have occurred. Hujing may leave their families once they reach adulthood if the chances of winning a territory of their own are high. If not, they will stay with their parents, at the cost of postponing their own reproduction.
Hujing tend to live in small units, usually only consisting of their partner and any children not yet old enough to fend for themselves. Being flighty in nature, they are often prone to wander and explore, sometimes leading them to seek more inhabited locations early on, though they can quickly feel overwhelmed in towns and cities.

 

Socialization

Like natural foxes they either establish stable home ranges within particular areas or wander about with no fixed abode. They use their urine to mark their territories. Urine is also used to mark empty cache sites, used to store found food, as reminders not to waste time investigating them.
They are very proud of their culture and history; every hujing can look back upon millennia of ancestors, the memory of whose accomplishments they pass on to their children. These tales spur every hujing to greater accomplishments in return, for the glory of their house and bloodline, and so each new generation shall slowly pave the way to enlightenment, which is what most family branches strive for.
Their magical affinity, their habit of favoring of pragmatism over ethics and their intelligence is what gave hujing the advantage in the Yokai Empire, and they have not lost it since then.  As they favor quality over quantity, Hujing spend a lot of time and energy mentoring their youth. This results in a low birth rate, and a strong sense of individuality. Their habits and traditions are molded by their immediate family and later refined and altered by themselves, but beyond that, they are loners. Two hujing from different families may have very different, perhaps even irreconcilable traditions, and the thought of a mainstream society horrifies them, as does having to adapt to it instead of devoting all their energy to their own cause.  A hujing’s artistic hobbies and professions can include but are not limited to the mastery of martial arts, calligraphy, music or painting, but also ritualized swordsmanship and archery. These activities are often taken to a level of mastery far beyond that of simple hobbies though.

Magic Use

In general, Hujing use a lot of their innate sorcery in their daily lives and interactions. Most of the spellcraft they learn will supplement or enhance their potent biomagical attributes. They also dabble in spells that alter the flow of time and create new physical spaces. Collective hujing can make pockets in reality with rare spatial spells that can make an entire castle under someone’s floorboard, and populate it with people. The constructed world is real, but made from spiritual aether. As such, there can be a time-dilation between the overall world and these spaces. These realms are usually just homes, and forests, and are not whole worlds. It usually takes about three to five foxes to make a whole realm and populate it.

 

 

Author’s Notes

Around the time I was making the Arcane Realm, I was really into yokai and wanted them to be a part of it. Kitsune being one of the most well known of Japanese folk creatures, its no surprise that I would them. I didn’t expect to find their cultural relevance being so popular in many East Asian countries or the facts I learned about real foxes while doing this.

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