All That Glitters
The Elves of Zaelu-Kil-Tane are a motley crew with a tumultuous history. The native Elves, who called themselves the Andalhar, or "dawnchildren", were peaceful and harmonious, living and working alongside the human settlements in the southern grasslands. The day the Yaisar showed up was the day Zaelu changed forever.
A warlike tribe of Elves from the continent of Aevquin, the Yaisar were on a mission of conquest. Their brutality was something that the Andalhar had never experienced before, and they were shaken to their foundations. A great many were slaughtered. Some chose to fight back against the invaders. And a not insignificant number allied themselves with the Yaisar, spelling doom for those who had opposed.
The remaining few rebellious Andalhar and humans escaped below ground, setting up new civilizations in the Underdark—eventually becoming the Drow and the Czaxa, respectively. Although they attempted to cross the Great Waste, the Yaisar were beaten back by the sands, thankfully sparing the rest of Zaelu from their fury. Over time, they settled into the grasslands, intermarrying with the Andalhar that had allied with them and becoming the Golden Elves. A few clans of pureblood Yaisar still haunt the scant forests that border the frostfell nation of Virren, but they are very reclusive and nowhere near as bloodthirsty as their ancestors.
Ability Score Increase. Your Dexterity score increases by 2.
Age. Although elves reach physical maturity at about the same age as humans, the elven understanding of adulthood goes beyond physical growth to encompass worldly experience. An elf typically claims adulthood and an adult name around the age of 100 and can live to be 750 years old.
Alignment. Distrust of other races due to repeated attempts at conquest have left Golden Elves rather bitter on the whole. They tend toward neutrality. The Yaisar are restless and nomadic, but uncomfortable outside of their limited range in the south. Most are chaotic neutral. Wasteland Elves are cheerful and friendly, generally exemplifying the tenets of chaotic good.
Size. Elves range from under 5 to over 6 feet tall and have slender builds. Your size is Medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Darkvision. You have superior vision in dark and dim conditions. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Keen Senses. You have proficiency in the Perception skill.
Fey Ancestry. You have advantage on saving throws against being charmed, and magic can’t put you to sleep.
Trance. Elves don’t need to sleep. Instead, they meditate deeply, remaining semiconscious, for 4 hours a day. (The Common word for such meditation is “trance.”) While meditating, you can dream after a fashion; such dreams are actually mental exercises that have become reflexive through years of practice. After resting in this way, you gain the same benefit that a human does from 8 hours of sleep.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Zaelu Common and Elvish. Elvish is fluid, with subtle intonations and intricate grammar. Elven literature is rich and varied, and their songs and poems are famous among other races. Many bards learn their language so they can add Elvish ballads to their repertoires.
As a Golden Elf, you have a keen mind and a mastery of at least the basics of magic. Haughty and reclusive, Golden Elves believe themselves to be superior to non-elves and even other elves. They have bronze skin and hair of copper, black, or golden blond. Their eyes are golden, silver, or black. They are rarely encountered outside of Selkayto Re, and those that are seen north are usually diplomats, merchants, or exiles.
Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 1.
Elf Weapon Training. You have proficiency with the longsword, shortsword, shortbow, and longbow.
Cantrip. You know one cantrip of your choice from the wizard spell list. Intelligence is your spellcasting ability for it.
Extra Language. You can speak, read, and write one extra language of your choice.
As a Wasteland Elf, you are keenly attuned to living in the harsh environs of the desert. Wasteland Elves follow nomadic lifestyles—herding horses, cattle, and goats across the sands, sleeping during the day and working or traveling at night. Their wandering takes them many places and puts them in contact with many cultures, and they are generally welcome everywhere for the news and exotic trade goods they carry. Freely able to travel between Selkayto Re and the northern nations, they often lead long drives of livestock across the waste.
Wasteland Elves are descended from the Golden Elves that rule the southern grasslands, and their appearance is similar. They have coppery skin and dark hair, generally black or deep brown, with a warm reddish tint. Their eyes are golden, deep green, or black.
Ability Score Increase. Your Constitution score increases by 1.
Heat Endurance. Wasteland Elves are acclimated to life in the desert. You automatically succeed on Constitution saving throws made to resist the effects of extreme heat.
Desert Weapon Training. You have proficiency with the scimitar, rapier, and shortbow.
Shifting Sands. You've learned the rhythm of the desert. You can use this ability to cast the mold earth cantrip. Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for it. (See Player's Companion for information on this spell)
Tamer of Beasts. You have proficiency in the Animal Handling skill.
Yaisar (Wood Elf)
As a Wood Elf, you have keen senses and intuition, and your fleet feet carry you quickly and stealthily through the forest. Reclusive and distrusting of others, a Yaisar spotted outside the scant forested region (and outside of Selkayto Re at all) is an incredibly rare sight indeed. Any that do venture outside of Elven territory will be met with intense suspicion, if not outright fear. Though most currently living Yaisar do not share the bloodlust of their ancestors, their intimidating reputation more than precedes them.
A Yaisar's skin tends to be copperish in hue, sometimes with traces of green. Their hair tends toward browns and blacks. Some Yaisar still sport the adornment of their tribal ancestors—slicked-back hair pulled into a low, tight bun; a single ring piercing in each ear; and a wide line tattooed in the middle of their face, from their hairline to the bridge of their nose and from the bottom of their lip to their chin. Their eyes are green, brown, or hazel.
Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 1.
Elf Weapon Training. You have proficiency with the shortsword, longsword, shortbow, and longbow.
Fleet of Foot. Your base walking speed increases to 35 feet.
Mask of the Wild. You can attempt to hide even when you are only lightly obscured by foliage, heavy rain, falling snow, mist, and other natural phenomena.
Bonus Language. You can speak, read, and write Aevquin Common.