The Coraie (core-eye) order of Dryads is a Dryad order that resides within the Coraie Great Tree and its surrounding limb trees on the Warped Isles. Aphylla of the Coraie serves as the head and spiritual leader of the order. The islands are known as the Coraie Islands to the order. The order is the last known order of Dryads in the world of Alathra. The order has only existed for a short time, and is made from members of the Isameine order of Dryads, who once inhabited the Isameine Great Tree on the isle of Lesbis. The order is small, containing only a few members.
The history of the Coraie order is marred in tragedy. As the group is only a small number of refugees. It has made adjusting to the islands difficult.
Death of the Isameine Great Tree
The Isameine Great Tree was an azalea Great Tree that existed on the isle of Lesbis. It was home to what is believed to be the last order of Dryads with an estimated population of 170. The spiritual head of the order was the mother of the Dryad Aphylla, head of the Coraie Order. Approximately 30 years before the formation of the Coraie order, the Isameine Great Tree was struck by a withering disease. The origin of the sickness is not known. The result was a slow drying and decay of the Great Tree, its suffering was felt by the entire order. After 29 years of sickness, the Isameine could no longer maintain its life, and was struck by lightning during a storm. A fire rapidly spread through the entire tree, burning it to the core. Death from the disaster total over 150. The charred remains of the Isameine still exist there today (build WIP). Fourteen Dryads were able to escape the inferno, taking refuge inside a nearby cave. There they met the Cave Imp, who welcomed them into its home. They stayed within the lush environment for several months, able to heal and recover from the trauma the group had experienced. However, as several of the survivors were bound to the Isameine, they eventually fell to sickness due to being away from the psychic link to the tree. The only remaining Dryads were those who had not yet bound to the Isameine. The oldest of the survivors was only 34 years old, and the youngest just 8 years of age.
Founding a new Order
The remaining Dryads stowed away on a ship from the port of Cassiopeia on a ship that was set to head to the continent just north of the Isle of Lesbis. However they would not make the journey. At some point on the voyage, the ship hit an extreme tropical storm, and was crushed in the waves. The last six Dryads awoke on the coast of a brilliant blue island. It was a warped and twisted place, completely alien to the world around it. They believed that the Forest Goddess herself had brought them here. They had landed on the Warped Isles of the Coraie. The land was isolated from almost all human contact, and would bring them protection as a result. It wasnt long until they found the Coraie Great Tree on the northeast island. It was here that the Dryads decided to settle. After months of setting up a new home, and exploring the islands, they decided it was time to bind themselves to the Coraie Great Tree.
The Coraie town is separated into five distinct areas. Each with its own purpose, and reason to exists.
The central island of the Warped Isles is considered to be protected land. Poaching of limb trees, leaves, and vines from this space is considered to be a heinous act, as doing so harms the Coraie themselves due to the binding. The land is often patrolled, and cared for by the Coraie order. see also Dryad, Coraie
The Mirrorpool is a small pond that exists atop the northernmost island. Due to a lack of fish in the pond, and its only source being rainwater, the surface is completely still. At its center rests a communal meeting space grown by the Coraie to serve as a forum.
Seat of the Coraie
The surface roots of the Coraie Great Tree are referred to as the "seat" by the Coraie order. Here is where most activity happens with outsiders.
Heart of the Coraie
The upper branches of the Coraie Great Tree are referred to as the "heart" by the Coraie order. Most Dryads tend to live in this part of the Great Tree. It is filled with many sculpted hollows and covered in hung cloths for decoration.
The Coraie islands are home to several specialty resources that are unique to the region. Most notably is the Eakra fruit. On it's own, the fruit is too sour to eat, however the juice is distilled or fermented to make sugar and wine by the Coraie. It's pulp can also be pressed to make paper. Under the roots of the tree, is a deposit of white alabaster stone (diorite). The Coraie primarily use this stone to make paths. It is also used to make jewelry, where it is painted and carved into various shapes. The warped leaves of the Coraie and the Coraie limb trees are also unique to the region. The brilliant cyan pigment found in the leaves is used to create dyes for coloring cloth, fabric, paint, hair, and horns. However they are not unique to the world. Simillar trees can be found growing in Tartarus (the nether). These similar trees also contain the warped wood that the islands have, in much greater quantities. The Coraie avoid using wood in their constructions, preferring instead to sculpt the Great tree into shapes over years. What branches fall to the ground are used to the fullest. They are crafted into weapons, tools, and even support structures when needed. The bark of the fallen wood is also used for writing.
Relations with Outsiders
The Coraie order is very isolationist, only making contact when neccesary.
The Aitectli are the only group in which the Coraie order of Dryads make regular contact. Both groups have very similar views of outsiders, viewing them with distrust. After a chance meeting on the surface, a gift exchange occurred. Notably a dolphin pendant was gifted by Nii of the Atlepetl to Aphylla of the Coraie. After this exchange, several more meetings happened in which the Coraie would teach the Aitectli the Dryadic dialect of common, and the Atlepetl would teach the Coraie Aitectli. Through this, trade was established between the two people. And would also lead to the creation of a common trading post for the two groups.
Historically the people of Astravia got along well with the various Dryad orders who inhabited the isle of Lesbis. After the suspicious death of several Great Trees, this began to change for the worse. Once it was found the Isameine had been purposely poisoned, all relations broke down. This same dynamic has carried over to the Coraie order.