Elves (Firmament)

From Bestiary of the Hypogriph

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From the roots of Eondrassla, the First Children of the Ancients have risen. Once they ruled the land of Dryadala, though internal and external conflict led to their fracturing. Today, they are split into four great kingdoms, though not even combined are they as grand as they were in ages past... It is up to them to regain their lost glory, for the world has only become more perilous since.
โ€” Anonymous historian

Elves, collectively known as Elvenkind, are a species of humanoid commonly found across Telamon, well known for their pointed ears, large height, longevity and association with magic.

Biology[edit | edit source]

The average Elf is a tall, slender humanoid, who is significantly taller (but generally more slender) than the average Human. They are often elegant in both appearance and movement, possessing of an almost supernatural grace. They universally possess long, pointed ears, as well as an extremely long lifespan, quite possibly the longest of all humanoids, averaging a thousand years.

History[edit | edit source]

The first records of the Elven race date from around 8,000 years; they, alongside the Dwarves, were the first races known to have risen with the end of the Great Gap. While the Dwarves rose from the depths of the eastern mountains, the Elves instead built their settlements around the World Tree Eondrassla, founding the nation of Eondrassana around it. This mighty empire, once expending all the way to the western shore, ruled unopposed in the region, only occasionally having to worry about disorganized Greenskin raiders from the north. The first great king of the Elves, Adsirduhann the Unifier, is said to have ruled for a thousand years on the back of a magnificent dragon.

Around 7,000 years ago, however, the empire of Eondrassla was threatened when the Greenskins of the north, led by a mighty Orc Warlord named Monzrat Earthrender, unified into a bloodthirsty horde now known as Druacatakh, secretly backed by the Rakash who wished to cause strife between the two races and take them both down when they were weakened. Monzrat's warriors attacked the Elves with a ferocity never seen before and equipment not normally wielded by their crude people, causing Elven settlements to fall in droves while the Rakash led their own offensive from the east, taking the Elves by surprise. Despite their mastery of magic and war, the Elves lost much of their territory in a matter of a few years. The situation worsened when Adsirduhann the Unifier was murdered in his sleep by none other than his daughter, Madiiraxen Sunray, who saw the war as an opportunity to take the throne before her brother, Bel-Vadhin, could become the legitimate heir.

Bel-Vadhin himself caught wind of the situation and fought against his sister, culminating in a civil war on top of the war against the Orcs and Rakash. Much to the luck of the Elves, the Rakash could not resist betraying the Greenskins, leading a furious Monzrat Earthrender to shift all his focus on hunting down the treacherous Ratmen and allowing the Elves to settle their internal dispute; Madiiraxen was defeated by Bel-Vadhin, and her and her supporters were exiled to the distant land of Eusheth, as the newly-crowned king could not bear the idea of killing his own blood, even amidst this betrayal.

While the Elven civil war was over, they were weakened and could no longer fight against the Orcs and Rakash; continued warfare would lead to their destruction, that much was a fact. With a heavy heart, Bel-Vadhin ordered his people to sail west, to the land of Lesheron, where they would start anew. This order was vehemently opposed by the druidic orders, who could not bear the thought of leaving the World Tree at the mercy of the enemy, and they refused to obey, being ultimately left behind by their kin. Years after the exodus of Bel-Vadhin's forces, the conflict in Eondrassana came to an end when the druids finally killed Monzrat Earthrender, causing the Orcs to retreat back north, and the Rakash retreated back into their tunnels when the Dwarves launched their own attacks on their hated foes in the mountains. With the immediate threat over, the Elves still in their homeland begun repopulating, with a number of them departing to the northern borders, around the volcano named Mount Gavakar, to serve as a bulwark against further Orc attacks.

The sons of Bel-Vadhin, now known as The Saviour, founded the kingdom of Aelvana at the southern shore of Lesheron, over time regaining their former glory and becoming the greatest power of that continent. They would become known as Aesan, the High Elves. Madiiraxen and her followers, in spite of their exile, created a fearsome empire of their own in the eastern shore of Eusheth, indulging in all manners of debauchery and cruelty in the name of power; they became known as the Mirsan, the Dark Elves. The descendants of the Elves who remained in their original homeland saw themselves further attuned to nature thanks to their proximity to the World Tree, and through the millenia, they managed to recover much of their former lands, though most of their western land is now inhabited by Humans; they are now known as the Eorsan, the Wood Elves. And the people who migrated north to Mount Gavakar were changed from millenia of fighting raiders and monsters while exposed to the volcanic power of Mount Gavakar, becoming famed warriors of fire and smoke riding upon the backs of fearsome Fire Drakes; they were now the Fyasan, the Ashen Elves.

Society[edit | edit source]

Culture[edit | edit source]

Elves, as a whole, are known for being heavily associated with nature, in both positive and negative ways; they embody both the creative and destructive side of the natural order. Elves have a knack for sophistication and aristocracy, with their cultures usually partaking in both concepts often.

Religion[edit | edit source]

Through their history, the Elven Pantheon has served as guidance to the Elves in one way or another. These deities, according to the Elves, allowed them to rise into prominence and become the true inheritors of the ancient Primordials. Worship of the gods was deeply shaken by the fracturing of the Elven race, in particular due to the Dark Elves; the Mirsan have largely forsaken the positive deities in favour of the more negative ones, and the Aesan, Eorsan and Fyasan have done the opposite.

Relations with other races[edit | edit source]

Elves hold the stereotype of being haughty, though this trait is more prominent among their nobility. Certain cultures are more welcome to outsiders than others; the Ashen Elves are very open to visitors, while High Elves and Wood Elves are more cautious to those they do not yet trust. Elves are known to be the preferred prey of monsters such as demons due to their perceived 'perfection' compared to other races.

Elven ethnicities[edit | edit source]

Ashen Elves (Fyasan)[edit | edit source]

The Ashen Elves (Elven: Fyasan) are descendants of the Elves who migrated north to serve as protectors against attacks coming from the land of Gromkazul, settling around the volcano known as Mount Gavakar. Characterized for their tanned skin and silvery white hair (from which they are named after), the Fyasan rule over the Duchy of Eryliana in the border between Gromkazul and Dryadala. The Ashen Elves are the most physically fit of their brethren, and possess a very strong affinity with fire magic and the Fire Drakes who inhabit their land, being able to turn the ferocious creatures into loyal mounts. Outside of their constant battle against the northern barbarians, the Ashen Elves are known for being amiable, welcoming and glamorous, with stereotypes portraying them as rather vain and promiscuous.

Dark Elves (Mirsan)[edit | edit source]

The Dark Elves (Elven: Mirsan) descend from the followers of the traitor princess Madiiraxen who were exiled to the cold land of Eusheth during the Great Eondrassana War. Characterized for their pale skin, raven black hair and unusual eye colours, they rule over the dreaded empire known as Mirseleth. Indulging in cruelty and bloodshed, the Dark Elves live in a culture where the strongest prevail and loyalty is a rarity, for their infinite ambition leads them to always seek to overcome their superiors. The Mirsen are the world's more prominent slavers, and they take delight in raiding lands across the sea to take their people as cattle. The Dark Elves will stop at nothing to finally enact vengeance on the rest of Elvenkind and reduce them to servants.

High Elves (Aesan)[edit | edit source]

The High Elves (Elven: Aesan) are the original culture of Elves who once ruled most of Dryadala until they departed to the land of Lesheron. Characterized for their fair skin, light hair and taller stature than their brethren, they currently rule over the grand kingdom of Aelvana, the largest Elven nation of modern Telamon. Avid spellcasters, the High Elves possess some of the most famed mages of the world, as well as one of its strongest navies, allowing them to maintain contact with the east while protecting themselves from their hated Mirsan foes. The High Elves see themselves as scholars and soldiers who serve to defend the world from the forces of darkness, though their tendency to underestimate other races leads many to stereotype them as haughty and self-centered.

Wood Elves (Eorsan)[edit | edit source]

The Wood Elves (Elven: Eorsan) are the descendants of the druidic orders who refused to leave their homeland with the exodus of the High Elves, congregating around the World Tree Eondrassla. Characterized for the unique antlers which grow from the sides of their heads, they rule over the original Elven homeland of Eondrassana, having recovered much of their former territories over the millenia, though they also lost a significant amount of land with the rise of Mankind. Wood Elves are among the greatest druids of the known world, and even the most inexperienced of their kind has a deep connection to all plants and animals, being able to influence them to some extent. The Wood Elves are seen with cautious eyes by their neighbours due to past conflicts, and they are cautious of outsiders in their forests, for they believe the World Tree can never be too guarded.

See also[edit | edit source]