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Spring Elves

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Artwork by LivingDeadAK
Spring Elves
Skin Tone: Pale and freckles to lightly tanned, typically scottish/irish in appearance. Within this, there are those appearing of almost spanish descent, and those of celtic.
Height: Male: 5’11” - 6’6” Female: 5’8” - 6’4”
Eye Color: Green, Brown, Hazel, Occasionally blue. More rarely, a pale mint.
Hair Color: Deep browns to lighter, dirty blondes. Red-heads are common.
Age Range: Juvenility at 20, Adulthood at 80, Middle-age at 160, Elderhood at 240
Block Speed: 6

“If you do not sow in spring you will not reap in autumn.” - The Twelfth Elk King Aodh Breathnach


Appearance

The children of the spring court are the most graceful of their fey-descendent kin. With an even temperament and a penchant for empathy, Ue Il’ha are unmistakably descendents of the Seelie courts. With softer, rounder features and an endearingly celtic appearance, Ue Il’ha do not seem quite as threatening as some of their other brethren.

Clothing

Male Spring Elves generally wear fairly simple clothing; A tunic with a belt, a cloak, trousers, and boots all made from natural, plant-based, fibers. Female Ue Il'ha wear floor-length skirts or dresses, and shawls or cloaks fastened by broaches and pins. They use quite a bit of plaid in their clothing for the purposes of design and also stitch fanciful designs along the edges of their clothing to make a pop out a bit more. All of their clothing has natural colors, deep reds made from berry dies, greens, blues, and browns. It is uncharacteristic to see gold or silver in their clothing, though Spring Elven Kings do indulge in a bit of eccentricity from time to time.

Body Modifications

Ue Il’ha sprout small, nubby horns upon their 200th Age, which grow as they mature into Elderhood, forming a neat array of antlers befitting the herd animal that best represents the elder in question. For those who would possess racks of antlers, a fork in the antlers is produced every Age from the 240th age onwards. For those with ram-like or other curling horns, one inch of horn growth can be attributed to each age from the 240th onwards. They also are purveyors of tattoos, this is elaborated on more in the Art section.

Racial Abilities

Ue Il’ha possess the ability to communicate with flora and fauna on an empathetic level, reading intent and communicating their own unto the lands around them. This communication is a passive extension of their perception of their surroundings. This is also a passive connection between other Ue Il’ha.

Forests and other living environments that are connected to Ue Il’ha thrive unprecedentedly, bolstered by the wild magic within them. Environments hosting Ue Il’ha subtly rebuke and attempt to thwart those who may wish the Ue Il’ha and resulting environment harm. This is portrayed in the halting of songbirds, and the mild aggression of wildlife. No Ue Il’ha of healthy and sound mind and body will be found tripping over roots or being impeded in the forest. Imparted by a spark of fey ancestry, Ue Il’ha have the unique ability of both heightened senses and ease of travel in forested landscapes. The very land smoothing the path of the traveling Ue Il’ha

Fallen Ue Il’ha buried in rich soil become a part of the forest as they always were, sprouting into a long limbed crown of an oak-like tree. Depending upon the Ue Il’ha that has fallen will dictate if this growth is an Metal wood or Livingwood tree.


Redlines

Flora and Fauna may NOT be coaxed by Ue Il’ha for the use of war or combat unless otherwise stated by ET or LT.

Restriction from a landscape with flora and fauna (Heart of the Tundras, deep underground cave systems, or unnatural habitats such as dungeons or cells) results in the Ue Il’ha’s natural connection to be corrupted. Insanity is the outcome;

Beginning after 3 Eras, and becoming a permanent mental affliction and severing of connection upon 6 Eras. When this occurs they take on the feral template.

Connection to other Ue Il’ha is not an instant communication feature or an ability to manipulate other Ue Il’ha into action. It is merely an empathetic connection binding Ue Il’ha together as a species, prompting unity, understanding and affection. THIS IS NOT TELEPATHY.

Culture

Formed from a fragment of the forest itself and filled with natural magics that spilled back into the land, Ue Il’ha are uniquely benefited and bound to the forests in which they roam. As such, Ue Il’ha are most often found in temperate forested regions or other regions known for thriving flora and fauna. Each Ue Il’ha is borne unto a network of connection between their respective nomadic group and the living flora and fauna around them.

From this, Ue Il’ha learn of their identity through their explorations and the imparted emotion flowing from the forest around them into themselves. Due to this, young Ue Il’ha are often tumultuous creatures of large emotions and few words to convey such, oft losing patience with those who do not share this vast connection. As they grow into their features and their skills, the Ue Il’ha learn to listen into the song of the forest, a melody of reality. They soon learn to understand the respective meanings of each note. With this, comes forest sense.

The Ue Il’ha are a part of the forest as much as any other functioning keystone species in an ecosystem. Valuing the hunt and hard work, they travel in familial nomadic groups along the same hunting migrations until the Annual meeting of the Era between all of the nearby families to promote unity and respect. It is often during these gatherings that accords are struck and new knowledge shared, culminating in a vast feast of progress as a Species. It is also at this time that fealty is to be sworn to the Monarchy. Laws are reestablished and revised as new circumstances necessitate such.

Deeply ingrained in the Ue culture is a profound respect of balance, that which all must be and not be for the world to continue as it is. No hunt may be accomplished purely for sport at the detriment of the ecosystem they rely upon. Special care is given to flora and fauna to ensure their numbers replenish. In this, the Ue Il’ha favour spot farming, a technique in which plants are tended to where they are found to ensure they thrive, without affecting the landscape in order to mass-produce it.

Naming Conventions

Ue Il’ha have a Dithematic Given name and a Dithematic Surname. A Dithematic name means that it comes from two parts, elements, or themes. Given names are two words appended together and the Surname is the Surname of each of an Ue Il’ha’s parents appended together. For the Surname this means, much like a tree’s root system, if you look into a Spring Elf’s last name you can see back to the first generation. Though, as with all living memory, some Surnames are forgotten overtime and the most important ones are usually kept.

Example Names: Alfwine, Heidfolc, Octric, Ansleth, Cynric, Rosalint, Fridlaug, Judida

Creation Story

As all Il’ha are descendents of Fey, they hold a firm belief in the triad of the dragon Naezeiros, the Queen Nerisys the arachnid and the serpent Oloris of the end of times along with the tree of Etes H'evelm and the chasm of Van’aqra. In the belief of the great lattice of the Laka from which magic brews, and the Aagith, song of the world. From which each god, species and living creature participates in a grand melody of all existence, begun by the great wings of the drake.

In particular, it is said that the God/Goddess of Il’ha crafted the Ue Il’ha in the process as stated in the following excerpt from old tomes of the beginning of times, passed down generations;

The new God razed the golden light of the new dawn throughout the infant world, until they came upon another’s creation. That of a red doe. Taking the creature in hand, they breathed the wildest of magics to be found in Aagith. The doe gave a shudder, and yet the life within was unchanged, only overflowing with the wild flame of existence into the forest around them. Lifting the doe into the warm rays of the first afternoon, the light of the eye of the maker opened once more. The great Drake’s eye opened further with this, filling the deer with the spark of life only he and his ilk could grant. That of the first afternoon. The god shaped the deer to better fit the new mind within, that of Ue Il’ha. Upon the regal crown of the eldest of them, would sit a sprawling halo of antlers, framing their beginnings in the time of their end. The magic that had spilt from them into the land, forever connected them to it. For the betterment or detriment to them all.

Religion

The spring elves worship a pantheon of gods, one to have domain over those most important facets of any Spring elf's life. Aed, at the head of their pantheon, is the god of kings, rulers, laws, order, and justice. He is the god which the upper class of spring elves revere, but to whom all spring elves pay some homage. After all, there is no spring elf who doesn't benefit from the laws Aed reveres and upholds. Next, is Freamh, their goddess of motherhood, beginnings, and the home. Many elves worship Freamh for a variety of reasons. Elves who want to conceive pray to her, children who want a good life pray to her, and many consummate chefs or teachers similarly do, for the good of their meal or their students. Freamh is known to be the kindest of all their deities, though also the worst to anger, and many of their stories revolve around some unlucky elf bringing ruination upon themselves by trifling with the Goddess. Finally, their god of wisdom and magic is Ciallmhar. It is said that Ciallmhar hides more secrets of the world and powerful Truths than the elves as a whole now know, and it is for this reason, this endless search to uncover more of his Truths that many devote themselves to him. As one might expect, sages, scribes, fortune tellers and Truthseekers all worship Ciallmhar, seeking his boon and benefit.

While most elves worship these deities with one level of devotion or another, none are more devoted than their priestly class, the Druii. Druii are the priests, enforcers, judges and juries in the religious structure of the Spring elves, and are expected to exemplify the positive characteristics of all of their gods. Though there are some sub-religions, the main group of Druii present in all Spring Elven cities is a secretive sort of religion, where those who are fully raised to the rank of Druid are sworn to secrecy, as Ciallmhar demands. They are treated with supreme respect and dignity, as Aed demands, and the entirety of their community becomes their family, as Freamh demands. While most kingdoms have their own courts, the Druii run a parallel form of courts which are also deeply respected and considered to be valid, even more so than the kingdoms' own set of laws and punishments. Indeed, all spring elves who worship their pantheon view the word of a Druid as law, no matter where they are, and this uncomfortable fact has made many a kingdom from the other races refuse to harbor any Druid. After all, their mere presence has, more than once in history, caused the spring elves to become an instant rebellion. Beyond this threat, most kingdoms aren't especially fond of having parallel courts running in their society, especially when the Druid absolutely refuse, on pain of hideous death, to give them any information which they do not want to. The Druii themselves are, almost to a one, both physically skilled and imposing, and also understand many Truths, and are almost always able to complete their missions, even in the face of unforeseen pitfalls and difficulties.

Family

Ue Il'han families are the most familiar to a human with a very nuclear structure. However, due to the fact that Elves live for an absurd amount of time the structure has been amplified. A Spring Elf five generations back will still treat the children of the current generation as their own. This, on top of their Surnaming scheme, creates incredibly large and stitched together families.

Art

Spring Elves show their art through the tattoos on their skin, and by the wooden structures that comprise their forest-bound homes. The tattoos they create are done by simple ink, made from berries and other dyes. Usually, these tattoos are done to revere either their gods or their ancestors. Here are a few examples of the common tattoos an Ue Il'ha might have. Blue swirling tattoos are done to revere their highest god, Aed. Generally this tattoo is given to Kings, Heads of Households, and Druii as it signifies Strength, Leadership, and Magic. Green Vine-like tattoos are a signifier of the mother, Fréamh, and how she binds the family together. These are, of course, given to mothers, however, they are also given to Druii and positions of management in a Spring Elf kingdom. The third most likely to find tattoo is a set of three black dots done along the forehead. Ciallmhar is the god signified by this tattoo, the Ue Il'han god of Wisdom and Secrets. This Tattoo is, again, given to Druii; it's also given to wise members of a Ue Il'han King's Court.

Their homes, fortresses, and palaces are made from shaped trees. These trees are weaved into intricate shapes using rope and binds. This process takes months to properly do so that the trees don't snap back into position and destroy the structure. Once the trees are properly shaped, walls raised from thatched wood are emplaced, and then Ue Il'han runes are carved into the length of the trees. This makes every structure built in this style constantly grow so that overtime the homes will increase in size. They simply require more walls.

Food

Most of the foods that the Ue Il'ha consume consist of an incredible menagerie of natural ingredients; Corn, beans, squash, pumpkins, sunflowers, wild rice, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, peanuts, avocados, and more. If there is a vegetable, fruit, or nut - The Spring Elves have farmed it and tried it. They do also eat meat, however, animals are considered sacred beings, and they aren't bred for slaughter and farming purposes.

Major Settlements/Points of Interest

Formed from a fragment of the forest itself and filled with natural magics that spilled back into the land, Ue Il’ha are uniquely benefited and bound to the forests in which they roam. As such, Ue Il’ha are most often found in temperate forested regions or other regions known for thriving flora and fauna. Each Ue Il’ha is borne unto a network of connection between their respective nomadic group and the living flora and fauna around them. In every region in which there is a menagerie of thriving flora and fauna, it is likely to find a Ue Il’ha either in singular or in nomadic groups, traveling to enjoy the spoils of the land while maintaining the balance of the ecosystem.

History

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