The Races of Tarn: Half Elves
Special Notes: Half Elves follow the Racial Hybrid rules in HARP.
The following are accepted truths about half elves:
History: Half-breeds are the most odd of sorts, coming from the union of any elven sub-race and a human parent. Their stories are as varied as those of any race on Tarn, for their births can range from happy, joyous occasions to the most dreadful of circumstances. Few half elves share a history in common due to the range of possibilities that exist for their births. Half elves became prominent after the separation of the elves into various sub-races. Certainly there have been half elves as long as humans and elves have co-existed, but until elves began to intermix more often with the human population, half elves were rare. In the beginning they were exceptionally scorned, looked upon as bastard creatures that should not exist. Their very existence was an affront to the elven societies who shunned these half-breeds. Over time, as elves grew more accustomed to humans and came to realize that Tarn was no longer theirs alone, many groups of elves came to accept and even appreciate half elves. The history of half elves cannot be traced to any one time or any one place, for across all of Tarn they were born from such widely different circumstances.
Half elves born from high elven ancestry still remains a rare occurrence, as high elves tend to frown upon weakening their bloodlines. These half-elves of high elven ancestry are often shunned by high elves but accepted by humans. Over time however, this has slowly changed and it is not impossible to find a half elf accepted by the high elves. Of course, the circumstances of the birth often becomes of particular importance. If the birth was wrought from the union of two loving parents, it is more likely the half elven child will be accepted on both sides. If however, as has often been the case, the birth is under less happy circumstances (which often involves a male human and female high elf) then the child will often find themselves an outsider, even from both sides.
Half elves from gray elven descent are most common, as the gray elves are the most accepting of humans (and other races in general). Since gray elves are the most common of all elves, they have also had more opportunity to mingle with the human race. Children born from gray elf and human parents are typically accepted on both sides, although the circumstances of the union remain important. Furthermore, there seems to be no difference in the occurrence of half elves coming from male humans and female gray elves or vice versa.
Half elves of dark elven descent were often born from male dark elves and female human slaves, as creatures to be twisted and turned into more slaves. Dark elves tend to hate everything except their own (and even hate those of their own race) and so it is rare to find a half elf of dark elven descent that is accepted among his elven ancestors. Humans also tend to shun half elves of dark elven descent because of their dark elf blood, which most often makes them incredibly evil and untrustworthy. Certain the humans of Labyria are more likely to accept half elves of dark elf descent, but elsewhere, and especially among other elves, they are looked upon as abominations. These half elves often find themselves outcasts and twisted in many directions. Their blood may be a mix of pure Darkness and Light even, leaving them torn and confused.
Half elves of wood elven descent are fairly rare, since wood elves remain extremely secluded and their populations are quite low. Similar to the gray elves, half elves of wood elven descent come equally from male and female wood elf and human parents. This is a clear distinction with the high elves and drow (where for high elves the male parent is most often human and the female most often a high elf, and for drow where the male parent is often drow and the female most often human). Wood elves tend to be accepting of their half-elven descendants, as long as they are born into a family of wood elves sworn to protect the forests. If however, a half elf is born into a human family living in the cities of Tarn, and is unfamiliar with the traditions of the wood elves, they would find themselves shunned as any other race.
Description: Half elves are almost as varied looking as humans, since there are so many potential combinations. Half elven features are often a mixture of human and elf - so ears may still be pointed, as elves, but not quite as pointy. Or eyes may be slanted, but only slightly, since humans do not have slanted eyes, but elves have very slanted eyes. In some cases, the characteristics of the human or elven blood may take precedent; so a half elf could have very slanted eyes or ears that are barely pointed at all. Half elves can have any range of hair color and eye color. Most often they are a mixture in size and bone structure of their human and elven ancestry. So it is rare to find a particularly bulky or burly half elf - most are slightly thinner with more refined features. Of course, this is not always the case, so half elves come with the most flexibility (as much as humans really), in how they look. Although it is important to note that it is exceptionally rare that a half elf won't have some features that look mixed in nature. Rarely do half elves have completely rounded ears for example, or eyes that appear completely human. Half elves may try to disguise their ancestry, but ultimately it does show through.
Personality: A half elf's personality, similar to that of a humans can span the spectrum of possibilities. It is most often dependant on environment as opposed to ingrained, natural instinct, since a half-elf comes from two different races, often with highly opposing views. Half elves will most often take on the personalities of their parents, or more specifically, the personalities and stereotypes of their parents' races. A half elf born of one human and one drow parent would most likely be bent towards Darkness and have some mistrust of high elves (as the dark elf parent likely would have had). However, if the human parent were a follower of Light and a person of absolute goodness, this would create extreme conflict within the half elf. Many half elves face great conflict within their personalities, since many times they are born into a world that shuns them as half-breeds. So not only would their instincts and ingrained feelings be conflicted, based on having parents of two different races, but also the environment may quickly confuse them as well. Half elves are most often affected at a young age by the circumstance of their birth and childhood. This is the primary factor in affecting their personalities.
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