The Æ‘Tallo, Chonkin and three other centaurs sat down with them. While the supper was being prepared and during the meal, Derrick learned quite a bit about them, the largest amount of information came from merely watching them; they were fascinating creatures to watch.
In form, their human half was human in shape far less than he had originally thought. Their ribcage was shorter than a human's was, and if the layering of muscle attached to them was any indication, the bones were quite heavy. Since they weren't there to protect a heart and lungs or even the structure of a diaphragm, their only purpose was to support the muscle and bone structure of their arms and shoulders.
Their arms looked like a foreshortened version of their front legs with a more versatile joint structure. Their hands looked like a cross between human hands an a horse's hoof. They were heavy and wide with only three fingers instead of four, the middle finger being heaver than the other two and nearly as heavy as the thumb. The thumb was more centered on the wrist than a human's; it opposed the middle finger directly across a surprisingly small palm. This structure prevented the hand from lying flat on a surface but then a human's hands are built to take a human's weight from time to time whereas centaurs almost never used their hands in that manner. Their fingernails were likely the most human thing about their hands aside from the fact that they were very thick.
Their human waist was surprisingly narrow but no narrower than a horse's neck and their human neck was rather thick topped by a very human head though the eyes looked like horse's eyes. The nose was heavier than the normal human nose but it was something Derrick noticed only because he was expressly looking for similarities and differences.
Now the ears. The elven ear was a lot like a bat's ear; it was indeed pointed but much of its structure was built directly into the head; the end result was that it lay very close to the skull. The centaur's ears were very horsey though smaller than the average horse's ears might be. They swiveled freely and independently, and Derrick had seen first hand how they could be pulled back to protect them during an attack. Chonkin's ears had been almost unnoticeable during their entire conversation the night before.
The entire human half of their structure was longer than the normal horse's neck. This structure was lengthened to accommodate the ribcage and shoulder structure adding a foot or more to the length of the spine. The backbone was different from a horse's too. The arc of a horse's back continued its curve up into the human body to support that part upright rather than forward like a horse's head and neck.
The horse part of their body had differences too though they were harder to spot. The lifestyle that included a good deal of hunting had made for a very broad chest between the front legs of the horse half and yet their horse's waist was quite trim on the average, making them look something like a greyhound dog though not quite so sucked up as that. Thickening happened there from age or pregnancy. This was likely a direct result of being omnivores rather than pure grazers.
Derrick couldn't spot much else that was obviously different aside. from the possibility that they were more flexible as they seemed to be more graceful in their everyday movements than the average horse was.