Half-Elf
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Half-elves are rare, and thus only rarely create a significant subculture of their own. Most common are half-elves who are the offspring of elven or sidhe fathers from Avareen who "rough it" in human cities. Typically, the fathers leave raising the child to the mothers, and give no more thoughts to their offspring beyond giving them a small gift or two at birth - if they even learn of the birth. Often, such children are called "changelings" by humans, after a Fair Folk custom of exchanging human babies for their own offspring. Mothers often claim this to cover up the origin of half-elven children born out of adulterous affairs. Unfortunately, changeling legends frequently claim that savagely beating or otherwise mistreating the changeling will cause it to reveal its true nature and force it to return the original child, and acting this legend out has caused severe disfigurement or even the death of more than one half-elven child.

Elven mothers are rarer, and sidhe mothers rare still - most elven woman know herbs that prevent unwanted pregnancies, and are sure to use them when intermingling with humans. In case when a pregnancy does occur - whether wanted or unwanted - the mother usually retreats to the elven kingdom of her birth. There the child will be raised by the sylvan community. It won’t be treated badly, but it will never be regarded as an equal by the elves. As a result, most half-elven children will either form bonds of friendship with the other sylvan races, or leave the forests entirely in search of human companionship. The exception to this is the elven kingdom of Tuvareen, where half-elves are raised by some sidhe as their own successors - and are, in fact, strongly discouraged from leaving. There are a few half-elves with one parent from Narevoreen, but most are still in their infancy - the few exceptions are the children of elven sailors who traveled abroad even when the islands were still off-limits.

In human cities, half-elves share some of the glamour and mystique of elves - most humans tend to assume they have strong mystical powers inherited from their elven ancestry. At the same time, humans are quick to blame them when odd accidents and supernatural incidences occur. While some half-elves try their best to blend in into human societies, others see their partially human heritage of a source of shame, exclusively mating with other half-elves (or, if possible, elves) to "re-create their elven bloodline".

List of Articles about Half-Elves

Adventure Ideas

Designer's Notes & Resources

Imagine you are a married human woman in a deeply conservative society with very strong views of adultery (at least, as far as the women are concerned). Then you have a dalliance with a exotic, handsome male elf who leaves soon after. Some time later, you become pregnant.

How would you explain the presence of a half-elven child? Especially since admitting the truth would mean being rejected by your husband and cast out from society?

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