After King Geoffroi, may his arrogance be uprooted, expelled our community from Fida under threat of conversion, Governor Antonio Romano invited us to settle in unoccupied land at the outskirts of Terida. We did not know until we arrived and attempted to settle the land that there was a reason that no Shondai live there.
We found the area densely inhabited with spirits both visible and hidden from the human eye. There are so few nations from which the Avodai are welcomed and we were just too tired to travel further to the Za’halem.
The Word makes clear that the Avodai must not harm the spirits for the Light created all beings. Therefore, we set upon the difficult task of finding a way to live with the spirits. The spirits’ ways are not our ways and they can be tricky beasts.
There are some among our community who will only call spirits “The Best Among Us” or “Those Who Come and Go” as to not spark their wrath. As a Rafa, I strongly believe it is best to use their names and describe them truly. Only then can we understand them as they are- neither good nor evil. If you stay on their good side then they may even be helpful, at least by their standards.
This book contains a lifetime of learning the ways of the spirits of Terida and Kahal, as well as spirits known to the Rafas more generally. I hope it will serve as a guide to future generations of Rafas and the people of Kahal on how to find peace with the spirits and manage their ill effects on human health.
Upon you be peace,
Rafa Aviel bet Hana v’ Tzvi
Aviel bet Hana v’ Tzvi of blessed memory wrote the book as the culmination of their work to understand and make peace with the areas’ spirits that enabled Avodai inhabitation of the area fifty-two years after Kahal’s founding. Rafa Aviel was the founder of the Rafa Counselor speciality, which has since spread across the Avodai world.An official accounting of the local spirits has not been written since Rafa Aviel’s time. As you can imagine, we have learned quite a bit in the 137 years since it was written.We have taken it upon ourselves to organize Rafa Aviel’s work and update it from our own experiences and the knowledge collected by the Order of Rafa over the intervening years. We have sifted through many notes in old medical records, hidden in apothecary treatises, and piled in stray boxes in the House of Rafa’s cellar. We organized the work into the following sections:
- Spirits and other Creatures of Kahal & Terida
- Spirits who Live Among Us
- Spirits of Death
- Spirits that Cause Illness
- Legendary Creatures
Upon you be peace,
Rosh Rafa Malki bet Hallel v’ Yaffa
Rafa Counselor Shai bet Lora
21st of Golden Wheat Moon 6087
Since Rosh Rafa Malki’s retirement, I have continued to expand on our work where the Society of Rafa’s knowledge has grown on the topic of the spirits. This is an updated printing of the book.
Upon you be peace,
Rosh Rafa Shai bet Lora
6th of Spirit Moon 6102
The Lantook are a small, nomadic people who live in the Alterra forests bordering Kahal. They have chicken-like feet and long tongues. When in the forest, keep an eye out for the impressions of chicken feet in the dirt.
They maintain different villages for each season. There are the spring foraging grounds, summer farmlands, fall fishing grounds on the riverbank, and winter hunting grounds. They travel to their various villages in walking houses, much like the Shondai’s walking carts. They keep fire salamanders as pets and steeds.
If you do enter their land, they may demand a payment of food or coin for such a trespass. If you refuse, they will flick you with their long tongues and make your travels difficult. Like many spirits, they can shift between corporeal and pure spirit form.
When the Avodai first founded Kahal and started building homes on the land promised by Governor Romano, everything went wrong. Hammers and nails constantly went missing. Work that was started was in shambles in the morning. One night Farmers Avi and Illa stayed up all night guarding the frame of their home. That is when they saw little people, some with chicken feet and some with tiny boots, pulling nails out of the wood! It was then we learned that the land we were promised was actually owned by Lantook and Gnomes.
In annual tribute, we pay both communities of spirits during the Spirit Festival. And that’s how the people of Kahal began to pay taxes to both The Governor of Terida and the local spirits.
Rafa Yoni once started a business selling tiny hand pies to the Lantook with Chef Galit. They are quite fond of them. I cannot blame them.
There are frogs that live in the Alterra swamp that speak like humans. My friend and mentor Scholar Bina Bet Frema v’ Eitan v’ Dov discovered their swamp. She was working on an extensive survey of the Altir forest. She enjoyed studying with them for hours on end. She would spend half the time debating the meaning of the Word with the frogs, who have beguiling interpretations. Then the frogs would teach her the languages of the animals. Scholar Bina has more of an understanding of the inhabitants of Alterra forest than any other.
Unfortunately, these debates interrupted her scholarship, leaving more of it to me. If only she spent less time debating frogs and more time recording her knowledge.
Rafa Counselor Rina bet Or of blessed memory studied with the frog scholars and wrote the preeminent dictionary of various spirit and animal languages. It is an essential tool for any Rafa Counselor or Apothecary. -Rafa Shai