Maykop came to the modern world from the depths of history that lie forgotten to other tribes. They were the first inventors of the wheel chariots and irrigation system centuries ago. Now – after The Apocalypse – they are considered the only ones who can recreate the former glory of mankind.
Yet, the technological development in Maykop is strongly opposed by the worshippers of the Golden Ox, who lose themselves in ectatic dances dedicated to The Horned One. Once, the rational, technological side takes the lead, once, the religious and emotional. Thus Maykop carries the seed of conflict within itself, which sometimes turns out destructive, sometimes extremely creative.
There are two Wings of Maykop tribe: the Soul Wing and the Tech Wing. The Soul Wing are the shamans – masters of religion and ritual, the ones who speak with The Golden Ox. The Tech Wing are the engineers – masters of science and architects of the technical development. This division is rooted in the most ancient history of the Tribe and constitutes the fundamental ideas of being Maykop. Every member of the tribe needs to define his/her sympathies. Standing neutral is regarded a queer, childish attitude. There is no third solution and no political career may rise in the middle ground.
The gender issues have always been considered unimportant within the Maykop tribe. Men and women have equal chances to become chief shamans or engineers – depending on the respect for their personal skills. It is a meritocratic society – a shaman who is effective in rituals and an inventive engineer are probable to attain political power and influence.
culture and habits
The religious cult of The Golden Ox leads to prohibition on beef consumption. Yet, Maykopian diet is based on meat. Any other type of meat – pork, mutton, paultry, fish, see-food – in consumed eagerly and with no limits. “The more you eat, the more you get” – Maykop tradition tells.
Golden Ox is the main deity worshipped in Maykop. They do believe in the existence of other gods and spirits, but those are unimportant compared to The Horned One. The Golden Ox symbolises cosmic vitality, strength, rage, ecstasy, magic and – surprisingly – the power of thought. The Golden Ox is a male force that fertilizes the universe with material and immaterial seed. Its power is limitless and cannot be exhausted by a ritual not enclosed by a verbal definition.
Religious rituals in Maykop tribe are performed by highly specialised professionals (the shamans) in order to achieve practical goals. The cosmic power of The Golden Ox, which flows everywhere and fills the whole universe, is temporarily transmitted into objects indicated by the shaman. If everything goes well, the established goal is achieved, f.e. a wounded person is magically healed or the rain falls immediately from a clear sky.
The shamans keep most of their craft as secret, so the process remains a mystery to but a few people in Edinu. Vicious people indicate that this kind of magic – practical and mechanical – is just another kind of technological thinking which lacks the aspect of faith that is so important in other religions. The Soul Wing only smiles cheerfully at such suggestions.
crafts and skills
The crafting and engineering skills of Maykop tribe are legendary. In fact, it is the only surviving tribe after The Apocalypse that has kept the ability to invent and re-invent new technologies. The Maykopian engineers are thus extremely important to the survival of the human race. Their skills are technically limitless – they are able to create completely new artifacts that have never been seen in Edinu before. This process need a lot if imagination and has to be consulted with the Guild’s Master of Coin before the effects of their invention is introduced into the game.
attitude to others
The people of Maykop are open to discussion with other tribes, especially if the discussion would concern their ancient philosophical dispute between the science and the religion. Yet, they are not so eager to share the secret of rituals and engineering with strangers. You would have to prove yourself trustworthy, maybe even become the member of their tribe, if you want to have them on your side.
Maykop has never been a military tribe. It is able to defend itself only against a limited number of opponents. Thus Maykop people may perceive strangers and new tribes as danger and act accordingly.
Maykopians value their own intellect and philosophy. Being praised for that, makes them happy and grateful. Laughing at that, makes them angry and distrustful.
superstitions about them
There is a superstition about Maykop people as petty thieves and robbers. The superstition is so strong that the word “maykop” is sometimes used as an adjective for “stolen” or a verb for “stealing”. This belief comes from stories and events so old, only the oldest people in Edinu might have witnessed. Yet, even being extra careful with other’s property doesn’t make Maykopian hand clear in the other’s eyes.
the first migration
During the First Migration, Maykop tribe was led by two untrustworthy individuals – a shaman and an engineer – who wasted most of their time on useless philosophical discussion rather that caring for the wellbeing of the tribe. There have been many divisions within Maykop then. A second-hand shaman had been killed because he meddled too much with Yamanya women. The Maykopian cook has created – out of clay! – an alternative statue of The Golden Ox which was supposed to be worshiped by a handful of her newly-established sub-tribe. This statue was eventually stolen by the old engineer and traded to Urukian beer master in exchange for a recipe of a homemade fermentation drink that either cured one’s soul or killed one’s body. To sum up, Maykop was a total mess which led to disintegration of the whole event called the First Migration.
the second migration
During the Second Migration, the people of Maykop came to Edinu with high ambitions and strong will to introduce the worship of The Golden Ox among other tribes. They have started a promising diplomatic plot with Yamnaya. Unfortunately, the alliance didn’t work because no suitable military commander was found to lead both tribes against the Uruk. In addition to that, Maykop has suffered severe casualties during a heavy mutant attack. Later on, some reasonable decisions have been made, including inter-tribal marriage and cooperation within the Second Edinalia festival. At the end, Maykop managed to survive as one of the tribes constituting New Edinu under the reign of the infamous Urukian Queen.
the third migration
During the Third Migration, Maykop has suffered (as always) heavy internal conflicts. The Soul and Tech Wings were at each other’s throats for many days. The engineer’s son followed the teachings of the Shaman, while the shaman’s daughter became the apprentice of the engineer. To make thing worse, the youngsters fell in love with each other. This could barely be accepted, but…
… to make thing even worse, a maykopian merchant from distant land came along with migrating Shanidars and carried a scandalous secret. He had proved that the Old Shaman and the Old Engineer were actually brothers from the same father! Thereof, their children were identified as cousins in first line. Matters got highly emotional, although nobody was killed at the moment. Yet, soon after, the Shaman died of old age (or, perhaps, of misery…) and his apprentice (Old Engineer’s daughter) left Edinu one night without telling where is she heading to.
The honour of the tribe was partially saved by swift political actions of the Old Engineer, who managed to establish the High Council of Edinu, which he became a member of. There are three decisive members (one from Maykop, Uruk and Yamnaya) and two advisory members (from Shanidar and from The Guild).
A generation has passed since the Third Migration. The balance between the Tech and Soul was shifted. There is no person with skilled in mysticism in Maykop, nor any apprentice of these crafts. Yet, some older Maykopians miss the religious life and long for a spiritual leader to emerge from somewhere.
Maykop is a part of the High Council, with the Old Engineer as representative. The technical skills has proved useful to others – the irrigation system established in Edinu is working well, which means that there is plenty of food supply and nobody lacks water to drink. This advantage made Maykopians proud and arrogant, even lazy a bit. They are no longer open for new cultures and migrants, but would rather focus on keeping the benefits for themselves. There’s a lot of physical labour to be done in Edinu and they’re not up to do it themselves.
There are rumors that a new wave of migration is coming to Edinu. This may be a danger for a well-established Maykop position. The wisest decision may be to keep the gates closed. If this is not possible, someone should at least make sure that the newcomers are under control.