What are Fey?Edit
The term "Fey" refers to a type of supernatural being that inhabits the wilderness of Oron. Fey are creatures of both spiritual and physical composition, meaning that their soul and body are one in the same thing (as opposed to the seperate soul and bodies of most living creatures of Oron). While mostly appearing as humanoid in form, they can also appear as beastial or animalistic on occasion, depending on the circumstances of their environment and creation.
Common lore states that Fey are essence-based creatures that arise from the energies of Oron itself, making them the "native" counterpart of other plane's essence beings (Such as Demons and Angels). Fey are perhaps the most dangerous hazard that presents itself in Oron's wilds if not for their raw power (Being outclassed by Dragons and Worms for the most part) but for the sheer frequency that they appear.
So dangerous are they that for an entire season (known as "Fae Time") much of Oron's rural areas are abandoned and travel between cities is considered impossible due to the amount of ravenous Fey that emerge in that time. While most believe that this is a time when the Fey population booms only to rapidly drop as the Spry approaches, this is not the case. The truth is that during the Spry, Fey gather strength and sustenance from secluded Leylines that criss-cross Oron's surface. These Leylines slowly wane during the Withering and fall into inactivity during the Fae Time, prompting ravenous Fey to seek out other forms of sustenance - Often in the form of merchants and travellers.
Types of FeyEdit
The smallest and least dangerous of the Fae are the Pixies. Tiny gossamer-winged humanoid creatures, Pixies vary wildly in appearance. They stand between two and six inches tall, though exceptions on both ends of the spectrum exist. Their skin tone ranges from pale to brown to green and they can appear as any race, most often Alfar or Sanhedrin but occasionally human or possessing of bestial features. While not possessing any true gender, Pixies often emulate one of the genders of the race they appear as. Pixies possess between two and six insect-like wings the appearance of which also vary. Pixies are extremely resilient, with malleable rubber-like bodies that can be distorted, compressed and stretched to extremes without sustaining any permanent damage. They are capable of producing a shimmering bioluminescence.
Pixies possess animal intelligence, never speaking and rarely clothing themselves. They have a basic understanding of Sylvan, but are easily confused by conversation.
The Trow are stumpy, troll-like creatures that wander the fields and forests of Oron in the depths of the night. Horrid to look upon with long crooked noses and gnarled pointed ears, Trow are feared and despised by many and for good reason. They butcher livestock with heavy cleavers during the cover of night, steal tools and clothing from sheds and lines and worst of all – abduct children and travellers. Little of the fate of those taken is known, often scraps of bloodied clothes is all that remains.
Trow clothe themselves in grimy clothing and carry a variety of tools with them – hammers, chisels, cleavers and the like. Many hang ghostly lanterns on the end of gnarled wooden crooks, glowing faintly with an eerie green light. It is said that Trow speak a language that seems to be a cobbled-together pidgin of sylvan and oronian, though they never speak openly to non-fey.
Spriggans are Trow that possess the ability to grow to tremendous sizes. Unlike regular Trow, they are usually solitary, though the reason for this is unknown. Like other Fey, they possess innate magical powers. However, they seem to lose theses powers when they grow.
Gnomes are short earthy creatures who do not often concern themselves with the ways of men. They appear to be vaguely humanoid creatures made up of soil and roots. Atop their head is a nightcap-like protrusion with a colourful fuzzy lure on the end. They often bury themselves beneath the ground with only the lure showing in order to attract small animals. When they approach, they snare the animal in root-like limbs and pull it beneath the surface presumably to devour. There are stories of children being captured by gnomes, but whether this is true or just an old wives tale remains to be seen.
Cu Sith (Barrow Hound)Edit
Cu Sith, otherwise known as Barrow Hounds, are terrifying beasts that appear to be giant wolf-like creatures formed from animal bones and black, insect-filled soil. They are accompanied by the smell of rot and decay and are often mistaken for undead creatures by the uninformed. Barrow Hounds are in fact lesser Fey formed from the composite spiritual energy of slain animals bound into a single form by a more poweful Fey being, often an Erlking or Sluagh.
Named after their penchant for disguising themselves as corpses hung from tree boughs, these terrifying creatures are in fact scarecrows possessed by Fey. These Fey spread quickly, as they have a tendency for actively creating more of their kind, scrapping together new bodies from sticks, cloth and the remains of their victims. Unlike other Fey, vitcims of Gallow-Hangers do not vanish but instead often end up in the very same position so favoured by their killer - strung up by the neck from the branch of a tree. This unusual practice has lead some to believe there to be a connection between Gallow-Hangers and the death-deity Grimnir.
The Verdant Prince
The Queen of Winter
The Wild Hunt
Most sensible folk know that travelling the wilds of Oron alone is a foolish act tantamount to suicide, and to do so during the Fae Times is practically unthinkable. And yet there are people whose sole profession revolves around doing exactly that. These brave, or perhaps foolish, individuals are known as Swagmen.
These hardened individuals traverse the stretches between towns and cities in times when others do not dare to, delivering messages and supplies, keeping an eye on the movements of Fey and other beasts and rescuing those who become isolated. Despite these seemingly heroic actions, swagmen are often anything but. Though some become swagmen voluntarily, many are in fact former criminals and drifters who've become swagmen for various reasons (whether that be escaping a death sentence or merely neccesity).
Swagmen are loosely organized through the Adventurer's Guild, but unlike others share no sense of camaraderie or kinship - they are loners through and through. Though technically not a part of the Guild, they still use them as their liasons with the community and are provided free board and meals as well as other concessions when they are required. For the most part, swagmen are exempt from common law as long as they continue to do their job.
Swagmen have little possessions other than the food they can carry and the clothes on their back. What remains is usually an assortment of charms and wards that dangle from their eponymous swag.