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Bio on Elves

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Bio on Elves

Post by Yaku on Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:36 am

Elves were a race of beings who migrated to Alagaësia from Alalëa in the distant past; around 5217 AC. Humanoid in appearance, they had noticeably angular features, slanting eyebrows, and pointed ears, and a feline face; they were generally tall and always slim, and were, according to legend, the fairest people of the land, partly because of the physical transformation caused by the dragons' influence on them (and were thus called the Fair Folk). Most elves were more greatly gifted with magic than the other races, and had an innate knowledge of their true names, thus being more powerful than other races.

Skills:
Elves possessed inhuman strength and speed. It was said by Brom that even the weakest elf can overpower any human with ease. Elves mainly prefer to use a bow and arrow, spears, and swords (though all well-crafted swords were created by the elf Rhunön), rarely "bothering" to make any other kind of weapons. They were exceptional swordfighters, and during the Siege of Feinster two elves held off over a hundred swordsmen. The Elves had special skills of working with metal but they never shared them with any other race. They also had a natural affinity with nature, and could bend it to their will, though they respected it greatly.

Also, all elves had amazing gifts with singing; they could use it to weave a spell, uphold a spell like at the Blood-Oath Celebration, or just for leisure, however their songs always held some meaning or power.

History:
The elves originally inhabited the country or continent of Alalëa, but eventually crossed the sea in their silver ships, either seeking new lands to settle, or as Heslant the Monk stated, "to avoid the consequences of a terrible mistake." When they first arrived in Alagaësia, they viewed the dragons as mere animals; a grave mistake, for when a rash elven youth tracked and killed a dragon as he would a deer, it sparked a terrible war, Du Fyrn Skulblaka, between the two races. The war lasted many years; though the elves repeatedly attempted to alleviate the misunderstanding, they had no way of communicating with the dragons, until an elf named Eragon found an abandoned dragon egg and raised the dragon that hatched from it as his own.

When the dragon, named Bid'Daum, was strong enough to support his weight, Eragon acted as an intermediary between the two races, and came to be known as a Shur'tugal, or Dragon Rider. As a result of the pair's peacemaking work, which resulted in a permanent pact between elf and dragon, it was decided to establish the order of the Dragon Riders to maintain stability in Alagaësia.

Elves were originally mortal, only gaining their immortality and magical power from the bond with the dragons, much as human Riders do. It is not clear, however, how the effects of a bond with the dragons influenced all the elves, rather than just those of them that bonded with a dragon to become a Rider.

The Era of the Dragon Riders:
The new found link between the races was mutually beneficial; it granted the dragons the gift of speech, and elves the gift of immortality, though not all dragons bonded with a rider, as some chose to become a Wild dragon, (without direct language, except for showing pictures or feelings with the mind).

Later, Anurin, head of the Riders, decided to include humans into the pact with the dragons, even though Dellanir, the elf queen, did not approve of it. She evicted the Riders from Du Weldenvarden, later allowing a select few entry. Each human Rider, over the course of time, became more elven in appearance, in addition to gaining immortality.

The elves faced great devastation during the war with Galbatorix, during which at least four elven Riders - Kialandí, Formora, Glaerun, and Enduriel - joined the Forsworn along with their dragons, betraying the dragon and elven races. Vrael, the elven leader of the Riders, was slain though treachery by Galbatorix and the Forsworn, and the last three dragon eggs (2 of which hatched for humans) were captured by Galbatorix.

Following the calamity, the elves effectively withdrew from contact with the outside world, settling deep into the Du Weldenvarden, in their woodland capital city of Ellesméra, where none but the elves could dwell.

Warfare:
The Elves' superior senses, strength, and speed gave them almost insurmountable advantages in battle against the other races of Alagaësia. Elves were skilled in all the arts of war, particularly swordsmanship (all swords of elven making are stronger and harder than dwarf or human swords, and they never dull or stain) and archery (their bows were crafted with ease and never broke), unlike the armies of humans, which were normally divided up into infantry, cavalry (most notably King Orrin's knights), and artillery (such as the catapults used by the Empire at the Battle of the Burning Plains). Most Elves seem to prefer fighting on foot, or, in rare circumstances, such as during Arya's capture by Durza, from horseback. It is somewhat in question why an elf would fight from horseback, since, as Arya showed, Elves can run as fast as horses. The Elves do not seem to have any rigid command structure beyond obeying their monarch, or even a formal military.

Afterward:
When Arya accepted the Yawë, she became one of the few elves to venture beyond the borders of Du Weldenvarden, and she earned the disfavor of her mother, Queen Islanzadí, by doing so. Arya, along with her guardians Fäolin and Glenwing, became the courier of the one dragon egg that had been recovered by Brom and Jeod, and spent many years transporting the egg back and forth between Osilon and Farthen Dûr. Through Arya's actions, the elves maintained an alliance with the Varden, while not openly supporting it.

During the Rider War, for the first time in hundreds of years, the elves abandoned Du Weldenvarden in order to fight against the Empire.

Post-Empire Era:
After the war finished, the elves returned to Du Weldenvarden. As Islanzadí was killed during the Battle of Urû'baen, Arya took her place as Queen of the elves. Her place as Ambassador to the Varden was taken by Vanir.

Culture:
Both men and women had equal rights in elvish society; both could be warriors and leaders. There have been both male and female monarchs. Elves did not follow any form of religion; strict agnostics to the point of atheism, they maintained that there was not enough proof for the existence of a deity. When Eragon asked Oromis a question regarding the Elves' religion, Oromis replied that Elves did not believe in anything higher than their race, dragons, or magic.

The elves loved art and music, filling their homes with beautiful things. Poetry, such as that of Earnë, was likewise appreciated and organizations such as the Äthalvard were dedicated to preserving these songs.

The elves were strict vegetarians, believing that all forms of life should be respected. They would not kill anything after being inside its mind and knowing what it felt like for it to be alive. They also had a great love of nature, evidenced by their architecture.

Elves did not practice marriage, but took mates for as long as they wanted. This resulted in many short partnerships, which meant that elven children were rare and cherished; at the time of Eragon's training with Oromis there were only two in Ellesméra, Alanna and Dusan. However, the children were more powerful and were said to have a "sheen of energy". An elf's childhood power and grace was said to "wither" over time. Elves did not tend to hold grudges, knowing that they could be kept for possibly millennia.

Relationships between humans and elves were rare, due to the different species, culture, but mostly the lifespan of both races; however, due to the effects of the Agaetí Blödhren, Eragon Shadeslayer became a half-elven being, acquiring the elves' physical and mental strength, but still retaining many human qualities, such as the ability to grow a beard. Christopher Paolini has stated in a recent interview that half-human, half-elven offspring were not immortal like their elf parent. Instead, they had long lives and most weren't able to have children of their own.
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