The feline shape-shifting race of Nälu
The Haruzo are split into two ethnic groups: The Plarzo in Bonzapur and the Rugazo in the mountainous region of Arashel. Although each group claims to be the true Haruzo, they will refer to their specific title when they are in the midst of political exchanges. They each speak a dialect of Hazrul and the common tongue.
Bonzapur, the land of sun-fire. Arashel, the land of ice and snow, and mountains.
The Plarzo are the night to the Rugazo’s day. Where they are gracious, hospitable, and laid back, the Rugazo are unmerciful, cold, and rigid. The king of Bonzapur has a harem; the king of Arashel claims only one wife. The Plarzo embrace life outwardly, relishing in the colors, the music, and the beauty around them. The Rugazo are reserved yet passionate, but don’t misjudge them. Their loyalty and integrity run deep.
But people like Stygian didn’t differentiate between the two. He hunted them both for their hides and awarded others who did likewise, except he much preferred the lush coat of a snow leopard during the winters. After Stygian’s defeat, the Alliance outlawed the hunting of them.
In Desert Rose and Secrets Kept, we meet only the Plarzo. The sleek black cats who mark the desert as their own, but their territory doesn’t end there. Their claim to land stretches beyond the Kha Vaaro Mountain Range to the rich verdant valleys of the Rimanga Jungle.
In the palace, Ayianna discovers the great murals depicting the fall of Stygian and the prophecy to come. She also learns first hand, much to her embarrassment, that a zaporza is a public bath house, and that the queen has a paqzrona, her own band of female warriors. Quite different than the western culture of elves and humans, and this gives her hope.
The music of Bonzapur was inspired by the Hang drum, which Ayianna found herself dancing to during the wedding feast of the king, but I won’t tell who she was dancing with. 😉
Here are two music videos to give you a glimpse into what the music might have sounded like. They are a compilation of three groups I had the privilege of seeing at the Festival of Nations at Dollywood. LOVE this! You might recognize my hubby. Special time, special people. Enjoy!
If you’d like to hear additional videos of the above groups, check them out on YouTube.