How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love Eberron
Race of Eight Winds
This race is one of the highlights of the year in Sharn. Even though it is held in Dura and most of the fans live and work in the district, thousands come from all over every year to see the high flying race.
- The Eagle: The districts of Broken Arch and Stormhold support the giant eagle, whose colors are brown and gold. Stormholders are especially passionate about the race, even though the eagle rarely wins. Many Stormholders take pride in being fierce and noble like the eagle, and they rarely participate in the politics and intrigue that often affect the final outcome of the race. They are especially dismissive of the other birds of Middle Dura; the hawk is a lesser eagle, while the owl is treacherous and far too clever.
- The Gargoyle: Fallen and Malleon’s Gate were originally represented by the dire bat. As immigrants from Droaam came to Sharn, most settled in the Cogs or Malleon’s Gate. Twelve years ago, the region of the bat made an unprecedented change and shifted their regional beast to the gargoyle, whose colors are black and gray. Currently, the region is represented by Carralag, a remarkably clever gargoyle. The people of Malleon’s Gate are fiercely dedicated to the event. The violence appeals to the Darguuls, while the city goblins love the chance to compete against the elitist folk of the upper levels. While the gargoyle has yet to win the race, it has had greater success than the bat, and this has brought increased support for Daask and the Droaamites within the district.
- The Glidewing: This flying dinosaur represents the districts of Gate of Gold and the Stores, and its colors are gray and green. The glidewing is extremely popular among the halflings of Sharn, and some say that the Boromar Clan is the financial force behind the Glidewing Wind Guard.
- The Griffon: This powerful beast represents Precarious and Oldkeep, and its colors are brown and red. During the race, red ribbons are usually tied to the forelegs of the griffon, giving the impression of streams of blood coming from its claws. The people of Precarious are fanatically (and often violently) devoted to the race, although many don’t care if they win or lose; as long as the griffon brings down one of the other beasts, they consider it to be a victory.
- The Hawk: Tumbledown and Underlook are represented by the dire hawk, whose colors are light brown and dark brown. The hawk rarely wins, but Underlook makes considerable profits off the tourist trade and most Tumbledowners are devoted followers of their underdog champion.
- The Hippogriff: Daggerwatch and Overlook are represented by the hippogriff, whose colors are white and gold. The Goldwings (the aerial division of the Sharn Watch) are based in Daggerwatch, and a Goldwing officer typically represents the district in the race. The hippogriff has one of the best records in the race, rivaled only by the pegasus.
- The Owl: The giant owl is the beast of Rattlestone and the Bazaar, and its colors are brown and gray. While it is one of the slowest creatures in the race, the owl is famous for manipulating the outcome of the race with intrigue and diplomacy. While many of the inhabitants of Dura speak dismissively of “two-faced owls,” the merchants, con artists, and pickpockets of the region take pride in their mascot’s cunning, and a strong streak of carefree pragmatism runs through these districts. A few former racing owls are now merchants themselves, which can lead to unusual encounters in the Bazaar.
- The Pegasus: Highwater was the last district to join the Race of Eight Winds. Thanks to House Vadalis, Highwater is represented by the pegasus, whose colors are white and silver. The pegasus is the swiftest creature in the race, and it has brought Highwater to victory time and again. The people of Highwater are proud folk and are always willing to discuss the ways in which a pegasus is superior to the other beasts. However, success has its price. The other districts often team up to bring down the pegasus at the start of the race. And outside of the race, many of the inhabitants of the lower wards despise the people of Highwater; thieves and bullies will go out of their way to target a snooty pegasus supporter.