World: Midgard, some in Alfheim
Lifespan: 100 years
Activity Cycle: Diurnal
Millenia ago, when the worlds were still young, Midgard and Alfheim first met through natural portals linking their realms. Culture and creatures alike were exchanged, giving birth to many new things. Humans being humans, many of them entered relationships with their new fae partners, and at the whim of a fairy prince, these couples were decreed able to have children, and reality bended according to their will. On the Alfheim side of the rift, the first elves were born, and soon they spread in both Midgard and Alfheim.
Physically, elves are extraordinarily diverse. Overall, they are shorter than their human relatives, marked by long ears and skin, hair and eyes that take on colors no human’s does, usually cool colors. Blue is most common, but green and purple are hardly rare, and those in Fellowstel often alter their skin tone for personal expression. Beyond this, some of them grow horns. Others have 6 fingers, or only 4. Elves of a single family can look like entirely different species.
Mentally, elves are bound by the pragmatic and rational nature of Midgard, but still have a potential for emotional extremes far beyond human capacity. Passion, desire, and ambition are more common in elves on average, and these deep, sincere drives can lead to both wonderous heroes and wretched villains, and more ambiguous figures in the middle seeking something outside of morality. Elves are overall too ambitious to suffer a hereditary system, and so their nations are republics, where wealth, not title, makes all the difference. Several nations have an elvish majority in Midgard, as do a smaller number in Alfheim, but two maintain power beyond the rest, constantly vying for supremacy in their region.
The first of these nations is Harthell, directly to the north of its rival Fellowstell, and to the south of the human empire Gurngamos. Harthell’s society is ruled largely by guilds, guarding closely-held secrets of the necromancy that fuels the nation’s industry. Harthell uses necromancy to create undead “machines” that repeat simplistic tasks endlessly to efficiently create goods. This has created centers of production inhabited by members of all species seeking employment, one of the most multinational cities in the world. Keeping the peace are some of Midgard’s few professional police divisions, licensed to create and control a squad of zombies that back them up. In a similar fashion, the basic undead are used in tasks like mining and even warfare, where endless waves of masked zombies are used to tire enemy forces and drain morale.
Although Harthell’s residents will violently object to any suggestion they are anything but a free and open republic, the richest individuals both hold incredible power and live virtually unlimited lifespans thanks to the discovery of grey magics binding their souls to their bodies even after death. The Phoenix Guild controls the secrets to immortality and both fiercely defends them and constantly attempts to improve past their currently flawed models. Other guilds each hold tight control over their techniques and knowledge, making ascension through the ranks of a guild the only way for most people to advance in society.
Directly to their south, Fellowstell is the opposite of the tightly-controlled land of guilds and regulation. There, the public verve is life-manipulating magic, creating new living beings for various tasks, from war and labor to pets or even decoration. These life-warpers, called Professors of Creation, are more solitary, often charismatic celebrities of sorts who show off their new creations to adoring fans. Competing Professors often battle with their creations, and outright assassination is not unknown. Only one rule truly holds; tampering with diseases is strictly forbidden since an altered plague from the White Void nearly destroyed an entire city.