Like the other Homo sapiens subspecies, elves evolved from primates on the continent of Africa, 1.8 million years ago. While they co-existed with other races for a time, elves preferred more solitary lives and as such were among the first of these races to migrate elsewhere, travelling to northern Europe along with the dwarves. They eventually settled in what would eventually be known in the modern day as the Baltic states, as well as small parts of Germany and Poland, the Netherlands, areas of Scandinavia such as Finland and Norway, and in Russia, further to the east.
Bronze and Iron AgeEdit
Having settled far away from ancient Mesopotamia and West Asia, the elves remained insular and almost entirely self-sufficient, having little need for trade from fledgling human civilisations. There is some circumstantial evidence dated between 1700-500 BC that elves used Areum to alter trees and sometimes entire forests to help ward off outsiders and keep them hidden away from the outside world. Unfortunately, such protections would only last so long.
The elven communities in Western Europe were not so lucky, living close to the Celtic tribes of Gaul-- if the barbarians would not claim them, the Roman legions under the command of Julius Caesar in 58-50 BC would march upon their homes and either captured or killed all they found. Few survived, and those who did were forced into slavery or became gladiators. When Rome collapsed in 476 CE, elves had disappeared almost entirely from Germany and the Netherlands, their inherent distrust of outsiders only further exacerbated by their treatment at Roman hands. Swathes of their cultures, ancient sagas and traditions were lost, either to time, or destroyed by humans.
During the Viking Age, the elves in the north and east became increasingly active. Venturing away from their homes in Scandinavia and the Baltic nations, they began trade with both dwarves and human wizarding communities, imparting upon them their secrets to manipulating Areum, and in the process, teaching many of them how to perform magic. A strong alliance between these factions was born as a full-scale cultural exchange occurred, engaging in commerce and even accompanying humans and dwarves on religious endeavours.
However, the Roman Catholic Church eventually found out about these developments and feared that these wizards, their newfound allies, and what they could accomplish with Areum. In 1195 CE, Pope Celestine III officially declared the use of the "crimson æther" as heresy, sealing the magical alliances' fate and beginning a full-scale genocide of the elves and their wizard allies. Many of them died to the crusading knights of the Teutonic Order during the Northern Crusades, forcing the survivors to flee further east or towards the Scandinavian Peninsula in mourning, stung by the betrayal and shunning any further contact with the other races. Initially, the dwarves were not targeted due to their better standing with humanity and their technological advancement, but even they were not spared, and the elves came to despise them for their compliance with the Church.
Age of Sail and RenaissanceEdit
One surviving society of Elves based in Norway is known as the Kingdom of Tralar, and is willfully isolated from the modern world.
Elves are extremely tall (average height being about 6-8 feet) and thin compared to the other humanoid species. Typical elves have pale, sometimes sallow skin with long black hair, and possess ears tapering into a point. Elves rarely grow facial hair, but those that do are capable of growing notably large quantities of it.
They have a somewhat higher proclivity towards magic than Human beings.
- The typical elf is classified as a Type-I Elf due to not possessing any extraordinary powers and in effect representing the typical example of the species.
- Elves with the disposition to manipulate Red Matter are classified as Type-II Elves. Wizards have been believed to have existed throughout all of Elven history, though not many were able to use their powers until the Industrial Revolution era where Rm became more commonplace and more easily accessible.
Legal Status Edit
Discrimination against Elves is illegal in the United States.
The UN Declaration of Universal Humanoid Rights explicitly outlines rights that must be guaranteed to all humanoid beings regardless of their origin, social status or creed. However this declaration is not enforced nor is it respected by all of the UN's member states, resulting in some countries whose human leaderships are notorious for suppressing even their own human populations, let alone Elves.