In reading through BRP Magic World I wanted to put the SerpentFolk into context within The Southern Reaches, the setting begun in that venerable tome. I would think that the SerpentFolk would not be Fae-tainted in this setting. Their most likely origins hide among the jungles and swamps of another continent, somewhere not too far to the south west of the published map.
I leave as an exercise for the GM to place the SerpentFolk city of Mhod Va in their worlds as they wish.
Mhod Va, the largest and most organized SerpentFolk civilization of antiquity, was founded by a group of Boai warbands long before their first encounters with humanity. Carved by the hands of orc slaves into cliffs near a tremendously high set of waterfalls, the settlement was home to a thriving market. As it grew into a city, Mhod Va became a center of worship for the Scaled Ones.
Their unblinking gazes turned to wrest the secrets of sorcery and wizardry out of the realm's metaphysics. Generations honed their mystic craft upon the backs of the slaves captured in raids into the surrounding jungles. With magical help Mhod Va grew as its Boai founders did; slowly and unceasingly. The various schools of wizardry that Mhod Va supported competed viciously.
Cottonmouth SerpentFolk Sorceress
STR 09 | CON 16 | SIZ 08 | INT 16 | POW 17 | DEX 15 | APP 14
Move: 9 (12 swimming)
Damage Bonus: None
Armor: 1 (light scales)
Attacks: Bite 67% 2d4 (impaling) + poison (POT = CON)
Dagger 37% 1d4 (impaling)
Skills: Dodge 33%, Fine Manipulation 30%, Knowledge (Politics of Mhod Va) 45%, Language (Reptilian) 80%, Listen 48%, Literacy (Reptilian) 65%, Status (Mhod Va) 72%, Stealth 51%, Swim 78%, Track 25%
Memorized Sorcery: Agony (2), Captive Slumber (3), Contribute to Truth (1), Fatigue (1), Heal (2), Muddle (1), Scry (4), Slow (1-3), Sorcerer's Armor (1-4), Sorcerer's Razor (1-4), Sorcerer's Speed (1-3), Sorcerer's Weakness (1-3), Spirit Screen (1-3), Unbreakable Bonds (3), Undo Sorcery (1-4), Witch Sight (3)
Notes on Jafwe
As a Cottonmouth, Jafwe displays far more sociability than her ethnicity would suggest. She interacts with the hulking Boai rulers of Mhod Va deftly, providing all sorts of magical services to the retinue of Orm Dran Va.
Jafwe's Amatl Tonehua
Roughly translated as "Codex of Creating Pain", this pair of hammered-copper plates opens on 26 sheets (52 pages) of logograms in the Reptilian syllabary. Interspersed with magical diagrams, jotted notes, and an occasional fragment of a hand-drawn map, the Amatl Tonehua is the undisguised book of an apprentice wizard.
Reading the codex from beginning to end reveals the formulae for her spells juxtaposed with notes on her coven's politics, details on how to elicit the most pain from orcs with minimal effort, and a collection of poem fragments describing an area of the local swamps that exploratory teams rarely return from. These last verses actually contain a route hidden within them which guides the person deciphering the full poem to the lair of a "Talking Beast" (INT 19) Stoorworm sorcerer (see page 202 of BRP Magic World for details on a stoorworm, and page 154 of the same volume for Talking Beasts).
Spells contained in the Amatl Tonehua:
Agony (2), Captive Slumber (3), Contribute to Truth (1), Fatigue (1), Heal (2), Muddle (1), Scry (4), Slow (1-3), Sorcerer's Armor (1-4), Sorcerer's Razor (1-4), Sorcerer's Speed (1-3), Sorcerer's Weakness (1-3), Unbreakable Bonds (3), Undo Sorcery (1-4)
Jafwe's Amatl Amini
The Amatl Amini ("Hunter's Tome") is another accordion-style book. The front and back darkwood plates, which shine as though regularly polished, contain 20 sheets of paper (40 pages) in the Reptilian syllabary. It would be obvious to anyone who had access to both of these Amatl that the Hunter's Tome was not begun by Jafwe; the drawings at the beginning of the book reveal a different hand than that which wrote the Codex of Creating Pain. However, on page 14 of the Hunter's Tome, Jafwe's handwriting begins with the details on the Summon Madness Spirit spell.
Spells contained in the Amatl Amini:Sorcerer's Void (1-3), Spirit Screen (1-3), Summon Healing Spirit (1), Summon Intellect Spirit (1), Summon Madness Spirit (1), Summon Pain Spirit (1), Summon Power Spirit (1), Witch Sight (3)
The Amatl Amini has shown up in the hands of a local scribe, who knows nothing about how to read Reptilian. Can the PCs help discern how to read this tome before Jafwe and her entourage show up to claim it? Do they want to give it back, even if they do?
Where in the world did the book come from? Maybe it's time to go find out...