The Nentir Vale
The Woodsinger Elves
The Woodsinger Elves
There are three main settlements of Woodsinger Elves in the Harkenwold. While these tribes are nomadic, they do tend to stay cohesive with their clans. There were originally five, but by the time the adventurers arrive in the area, Oreinne and Eamane have fallen due to goblin attacks. Refugees from these two camps are at the camp we encounter. The adventurers have arrived at Valarien, the largest settlement, ruled currently by Queen Eryiel. She is currently head of the Woodsinger Counsel, which is composed of representatives of each of the clans (even the fallen ones). Her lieutenant is Israfen, a gruff, sharp-eyed Warlord.
The elves have long fought a turf war with the goblins in the area. While the goblins are numerous, the leader of the goblins, Nob, is stupid and gullible. There have been times where the elves have secretly plotted to keep Nob on the throne, as he makes the fight so easy.
Unfortunately, the Radiant Order arrived and converted certain populations of the goblin tribe. They brought along competent rulers. Nob has not been seen for several months.
The fighting has taken on a more gruesome tone. What was a push and pull of territory has now turned into a sinister bloodbath, leaving mutilated “cleansed” elves in its path.
The Woodsinger Counsel is of many opinions on this matter. Some believe that they should ally with the non-Radiant Order goblins (who hate the RO goblins) and attempt to bring Nob back to power. Some believe in surrender, in hopes that they will be allowed to leave the Harkenwold unimpeded. Some wish to fight, having lost too much to go back. Within these factions, voices fracture even further, and there is intense disagreement about how to do whatever it is they are to do.
Queen Eryiel: calm, sage and wise, the leader of the Woodsingers is not easily ruffled. She speaks in a way that is soothing and calm, which often acts compliment to Israfen’s hot-headedness. She feels sorrowful because of the war, and wants to fight, but realizes that they are outnumbered and outskilled with the arrival of the Radiant Order. While it appears she has some affection for Israfen, she is wise enough to know that he will never return it.
Israfen: A capable commander and fighter, Israfen often pushes for the action that Eryiel does not suggest. The queen realizes that the two of them work well together because of this character balance. Israfen also begrudgingly admits he sometimes needs to consider his actions more carefully, and respects Eryiel’s opinion greatly in these matters.
Woodsinger elves mate for life. Upon choosing a partner, both are marked with a special symbol to indicate their bond. Given Israfen’s age and stature in Woodsinger society, the fact that he has no bond mark is almost more telling than if he were to have one. He had loved Fariseth, who had chosen another companion and left the wood elf settlement. In characteristic stubbornness, Israfen has decided that if he was not to have her, he would have no one at all.
While these elves do not necessarily frown upon interracial marriage, well, this is complicated.Fariseth disappeared for many years, presumably living happily in a small, cosmopolitan town. Their town was overrun by goblins, and she lost her life trying to protect her daughter. Her husband used the last of his strength to return to Woodsinger territory with the child, named Briesbryn.
Israfen was determined to kill the child before Eryiel reminded him that this was Fariseth’s daughter. His relationship with Brie therefore resembles that between Harry Potter and Severus Snape: while he cannot bear the thought that this girl is proof of a love he would never have, she reminds him of everything her mother was, and he would do anything to protect her.