A new species has been discovered in the forests of Ossiriand encroaching on the territory of the Laiquendi.
“This was completely unexpected!” enthused discoverer Finrod Felagund, better known as the ruler of Nargothrond despite his reputation as an amateur explorer and musician. “I was wandering around the springs of Thalos and saw fires, and had to go check it out because usually no one around here is stupid enough to light fires. And bam, what do you know, there they were!”
According to Felagund, the new species appears bipedal in stature and patriarchal in structure. Its members exhibit most semblances of sentience, including the use of clothing to signify rank, the ingenuity to make anything into weapons, and enough avarice to clout one another over the head for a bit of well-polished rock.
“And an appreciation of music, which really cinches it,” Felagund said. “So even if they don’t look much like us, they act like us! I’m calling them the Atani.”
Atani, plural of the Quenya Atan, means “Second People,” and in the Eldarin scheme of creation, signifies that Felagund’s new species are being hailed as children of Eru beneath only the Elves themselves. Felagund’s Khazad neighbors are alleged to have sent several politely-worded inquiries inquiring as to their own rank in this schema, and how it might affect trade with Nargothrond.
“Not that we’re complaining about being the children of Mahal, you understand,” a Khazad spokesdwarf offered, on severe condition of anonymity. “But if these new buggers can claim better prices for whatever it is that they’re coming around selling, we want to know.”
Little progress has been made determining what Felagund’s Atani are doing in Ossiriand, but Felagund himself remains optimistic.
“Music is supposed to be the one true language, right?” he said. “So there’s hope yet. I mean, they liked mine!”
Felagund played the Atani his renditions of the Noldor’s Greatest Hits, minus the Noldolantë, while seated around their campfire.