Half-Elves are the result of Human-Elven pairings. The term is used both to refer to those with a parent of each heritage, and those who have Half-Elven parents. In physical appearance, Half-Elves vary widely. They may appear to be almost completely Human or Elven, or anywhere in between. Their ears do not taper gently to a point as do those of an Elf, but have a distinct blunt point. In temperament, Half-Elves are as unpredictable as Humans, though they do have a tolerance for other races that Humans do not, and welcome them in their settlements. Half-Elves have infravision.
History of the Half-Elves by Nayr
(original location http://www.fastq.com/~rholmes/helves.html)
The First Half-Elves From the first meeting of Elf and Human, almost two thousand years ago, these two races have been fascinated with each other. To the Elves, the Humans are full of life and energy, rushing about their lives, always running before death. To the Humans, the Elves are not quite real, with their patience born of unending life and their continual delight in and acceptence of the world around them. No one knows when first the two races joined, who the first Half-Elf was, nor even where they were born, for Elves travel far and wide, and met with Humans in many places and many times. Half-Elves were few and far between for many centuries though. This changed with the founding of Midgaard on the edge of the Haon'Dor forest, by the refugees of once-mighty Thalos. The Elves of Loth-Llorien mixed freely with the Humans, and Half-Elves grew in numbers. They were welcomed in Midgaard, and it was a time of peace.
Captain Tiber and Safehaven Captain Tiber was born in Seaside, son of a Human fisherman and an Elven ranger. Both of his parents loved the sea, and it was a surprise to noone when he followed in his father's footsteps and learned to pilot the deep-sea fishing trawlers that traveled for days out of sight of land. He did well as a fisherman, able to read the sea with uncanny accuracy, and follow the fish as well as his mother could follow any track on land. When he was in his third decade, still young for a Half-Elf, he traveled with his mother to Loth-Llorien, for the gathering of Elves that occurs there every fifth year. It was there that he learned of the southern continent, and of the Crossing. From that time on, he had a new goal in his life... to chart a course across the Seas and to rediscover the southern continent. He traveled to Midgaard and found a crew of Humans and Half-Elves, adventurous souls who were willing to explore the great unknown of the Maelmordian Seas. He raised money, both from the sales of his fish and from merchant backers. After four years of work, he was ready. He had purchased three ships, and his crew were trained and ready. It was a glorious morning in spring of 1218 YH when he set out from Seaside, on what was to be a four year journey. He and his crew met with many perils, braved the vast storms that sweep the Maelmordian Seas, and came close to death many times. Finally though, they reached the vast southern continent, with its endless coastline stretching from horizon to horizon. They sailed along the coast, low on water, unable to approach the cliffs closely, as the winds of the southern Maelmordian Seas blow endlessly into the land, emperiling any ship that sails too near. Trusting to the stories they had heard, they traveled on, and their trust was well placed. They found the deep bay from which the Seven Ships of the Crossing had sailed, now deeper, and the stone arms that protect it from the Seas, now worn lower by the passage of time. Nestled safe within the bay, they drank deeply from the swift river that flowed from the canyon that cut the cliffs along the south edge of the bay. The crew unanimously voted to name the river the Tiber River, and the bay, Safehaven Bay. They set up a camp, and made plans to search for the Elves they hoped still lived in the forest they could see at the tops of the cliffs that surrounded the bay. Their plans proved unneeded though, as the dawning of the new day brought with it a welcoming party of Elves. The Elves greeted them with open arms, fascinated by the Humans and the Half-Elves, and curious to learn all that had passed since the long ago Crossing when Elves had first traveled to the Northern Continent. The explorers were also curious, meeting with ancient legends, people they had heard of only in the bedtime stories of their Elven parents or relatives. A month of visiting passed, new friends were made and stories were told and retold. It quickly became obvious that each had much to offer the other, as the Elves crafted far more magical objects in their studies then they ever used themselves, and often had to venture far and wide to find the rare ingrediants needed for their studies. With generous help from the Elves, a colony was founded there at the mouth of the Tiber River, and Safehaven was born. Captain Tiber sailed for home laden with Elven treasures from the vast storehouses of Cillidellia, and his crew became the founding members of the Safehaven Shipping Company. Safehaven grew quickly, filling with Human sailors and Half-Elves interested in the past. Elves and Humans mixed freely, and in time few people in the small town could claim pure Elven or Human blood. Safehaven grew with the trade, and is now known far and wide as a Half-Elven trade center.
Mayor Rasputin and the Half-Elf Camp In Midgaard, after almost 300 years of peaceful interaction with the Elves of nearby Loth-Llorien, and the open-armed acceptance of Half-Elves in the city, a new Mayor was elected. He was Mayor Rasputin, and his name was to go down in Half-Elven history, and indeed, in many histories, as a name synonymous with evil. Rasputin was full Human, intelligent and cunning. He possesed a great deal of personal charm, and took great pride in his ability to talk anyone into anything he desired. Or rather, almost anyone. Rasputin set his eye on an Elven lady, fair and learned. He courted her long and hard, using every trick and tactic he could think of, but she saw something in him she disliked, and turned him down. When she did so, he was enraged. His desire turned to hatred, and he vowed to himself that the evil that was Elves should be wiped from the earth. But Rasputin was not stupid, and he did not attack the Elves directly. Instead, he began aquiring power, manipulating behind the scenes, always with his dark ambition in mind. When he was elected Mayor in 1334 YH, Half-Elven legend says, the skies wept for seven days in disbelief. Mayor Rasputin wasted no time, and his subtle campaign grew slowly less subtle. Gradually the people of Midgaard became untrusting of Elves, believing Rasputin's rumors and his empassioned speeches. When Mayor Rasputin had gathered enough political power he called for a new law, and in 1340 YH, banned Elves and all things Elven from Midgaard. The Elves retreated to Loth-Llorien and the Half-Elves made camp in Haon'Dor, planning to return after this madness was over. But it did not end. Mayor Rasputin brought the people of Midgaard to war with Loth-Llorien. Although he soon realized his warriors could do little against the protections the Elven mages placed around Haon'Dor the war was kept alive in name, without battle, until Mayor Rasputin's death in 1361 YH. His loyal supporters continued in his name, however, and the ban was not lifted, although the war was ended. And the Half-Elves stayed in the camp, outcast.
Nydia When it became apparant to the Half-Elves that Midgaard would not soon allow them to return they held a council of their elders. When the council was over, the majority of the Half-Elves had decided to travel to the southern continent. They had heard about its beauty and size, and hoped to found their own home, where they would be free to make their own futures. A few decided to stay in the camp, hoping that the people of Midgaard would come to their senses soon, and remove their racist policies. Those who had decided to leave traveled to Seaside, and booked passage to Safehaven in 1403 YH. They arrived in Safehaven, a peaceful Half-Elven port of some size by this time. Many of the travelers decided to stay in Safehaven, but many held onto their dream of a new home, away from the fickle Humans. They set out up the Tiber River, traveling south into the continent. Far up the river, deep in the interior, they found a huge, calm lake. It was on the northern shore of this lake, which came to be called Loch Raven after the huge colony of birds that live on an island within it, that they settled. In the calm spring of 1404 YH they offically dedicated Nydia, the first true Half-Elven city. For over a century Nydia was isolated, the occasional visitor coming up the Tiber, the occasional citizen of Nydia leaving for the outside world. This changed in 1518 YH, when Jon Keyotay came up the river from Safehaven. A charismatic Half-Elven trader, Keyotay came to Nydia as a successful trader, having already secured trading pacts with several cities. The Half-Elves were quickly won over by his arguments for trade with the rest of the world, and Nydian wool began building its well deserved reputation. In the five centuries since then, Nydia has quietly gone about its business, breeding sheep and selling wool.
Rumor and Speculation
Some Half-Elf thugs are known to exist, in spite of this class being inaccessible to Half-Elves in modern times.