Races Revised: The Kobold Kings
"The Kobold Kings" is a term used by the common civilized races to describe those kobolds that differentiate themselves from the sniveling, fearful, treacherous, and cowardly nature that otherwise defines their race as a whole. Most common humanoid races believe the kobold kings are just exceptional kobolds – paragons of their race who, through a quirk of bloodline or an unusual degree of talent and determination, manage to achieve a higher degree of skill in magic or learn more advanced fighting techniques. In some ways this is true – occasionally, a kobold clan will produce a kobold king child as a throwback to a time when that branch of the race was stronger and closer to their draconic forefathers. But its also an extremely dangerous misunderstanding of what the kobold kings are, for there are places far from other civilized nations where entire kingdoms are populated with the more potent, more noble kin of kobolds. Those nations are generally too far from other settled lands for the kobold king nations to pose a threat, often located in vast cavern systems deep below the ground, in the center of vast swamps, or perches on massive plateaus with no paths to the lowlands. But the day may yet come when the border lands of the humans, elves, and dwarves discover just how numerous and dangerous the kobold kings truly are.
Some lone kobold kings born into tribes of lesser kobolds often have no idea what they truly are, and accept that they are simply more blessed with the courage and power of a distant winged ancestor than their clan-mates. But in lands were the kobold kings have maintained their own civilizations (as well in the few kobold tribes that have remembered how they came to be), the kobold kings know their traditional name. They are the Koldemar, and their history holds the secret of why kobolds think themselves the inheritors of the dragons, and why so few of them show the nobility and power of their distant progenitors.