I. Origin + History
[Sorry can’t make this two separate sections you’ll see why]
Ancient History | The First Phase [This is the same as the past lore.]
Part I: The Experiment
The tale of the Mali’fenn begins with the schismatic war of the ancient Elcihi’thilln of the High Elves, or the Silver City. The untouched visage of the would-be ruler of the Mali'aheral, Lomal, after the inferno died around him during his trial by fire had stunned the many Mali’thilln of the Silver Hall, among them a young researcher named Aelthos Thuln’diraar and those of his laboratory. They stood then as he called for followers, a fire sparked in their hearts by the claims of elevation and destiny, and joined Lomal. They would be among the first of the Elsil’Parir, the Swords of the Harbinger, the flock of their prophet. As Lomal, who now called himself the Elannil’Ilum, chose Aelthos to be among the first to ascend the steps to his word altar and change his form, Aelthos would continue his research in a spectacular way - to ask for a change akin to that of the Golden Pools that their parents and grandparents had bathed in centuries before. Instead of gaining the fantastical form of a half-animal, and instead of gaining vast magical resistances, he would seek his version of the completion of maehr’sae hiylun’ehya - to become what he would call thill’al, purity complete. Physically his ears shortened and became more triangular as the hair around it bleached to a snow-white color. His eyes became a bright silver, and his skin paled to just more than that of a ghost. His muscles became more pronounced, his arms toned and hands dextrous, and his height shortened to an even six feet. He, however, would not take up any of the truly transformative properties that many other Elsil’Parir had chosen to take as he saw himself as the embodiment of physical perfection.
His experiment, then, was to question whether the use of the word altar would fundamentally change them, and to do so he would enlist his laboratory. His researchers, scientists, the sparse few mages of the laboratory, and their families would gather at the altar one day and Lomal would change them one by one, granting them all nearly the same changes as Aelthos before them, with slight individual modifications of eye and hair color. Some had eyes a deep amethyst color, while others chose hair a pale blonde color instead of white. He saw them as family, then, and they tested themselves and each other.
Part II: Purity
They would, however, soon be forgotten by Lomal for those he had changed into more exotic and powerful forms, and by Larihei’s folk for their lack of connection to Lomal thereafter. Indeed, though originally entranced by their new forms, the lack of change during the stagnated conflict left Aelthos disillusioned, and whilst he had thrown in his proverbial lot with the Elsil’Parir, his people wished to return to their cousins and their purpose of forging their own destiny. He would, late in one Snow’s Maiden night, send a message across the wall asking for return. Months later, they would enact their plan on the third night of what would be called the Ball of the Century. As Lomal hosted perhaps the most grand ball the Silver City had ever seen, with magical displays far beyond that which had come before, Aelthos and his band stole away across the wards of the great wall put up to protect Larihei’s people from Lomal’s, assisted by those of Larihei’s followers that had been trying to undermine Lomal’s influence.
They found themselves quickly isolated, however, as many of those that had once been their friends now declared their forms impure. Those that sought to join them thereafter were a tenth of the number that had applied previously to the once-prestigious laboratory, and indeed they found themselves to be a different definition of pure than their brethren.
While they had set themselves back on the path of progress as they had once known it, peace would not come to them easily. When Larihei called upon Lomal for a final debate and shot in front of their many followers, and when Lomal’s supporters then broke through great wall’s wards, they fled with their brethren. They fled through Tahn’s great plains and ancient wilderness, and when they came across the portal, they too trusted in the missing Larihei and jumped into the portal.
Part III: Ice
When they found themselves deep in the Aegisian wilderness, they wandered separately from the many that would later assimilate into Laurelin. Instead, they would find themselves in the deep North, far past the future location of the Human city of Winterfell, where their changed bodies would not be called a curse by their cousins. Here they found that they had indeed lost some of what had once made them Mali’aheral - their eyes had only flecks of the deposits once vibrantly glowing within, and their search for health halted as soon as they had become accustomed to their "perfected" bodies.
Instead they sought to defend themselves from the constant ringing within minds, the effects of the loss of the word altar. For decades, the men and women of the laboratory tested everything they could, subjecting themselves to intense training and work to delay what had taken the minds of their weakest. Indeed, deep in Aegis’ northern tundras, Aelthos seemed to be the only truly sane one of them. For this reason, they would not scout far past their frozen laboratory until the advent of Iblees, which forced them to flee south and into the Verge with the rest of the Descendants. In Asulon, too, they searched for a cure for decades with little luck before the continent was destroyed in fire and flood.
Aelthos, while a good leader and smart in coupling his people, knew he would not be able to hold their new curse at bay for long. He had slowly found himself less in control, and while the changes of the word altar on him were small, he had still accepted Lomal's changes those many years go. Though outwardly he was still the same grand leader his people had always seen, he felt the lack of the altar eating at the edges of his mind. For Aelthos, though, he most cherished and cared about his young and growing son. When his son showed to be under the same mental strain as he, Aelthos knew finally that for their survival they must leave their laboratory. To find a cure for his son and his kin, Aelthos and his two original laboratory managers searched Anthos far and wide before finally standing at a frozen, bright blue lake far beyond the Wall that mirrored what had once kept them from being true High Elves. They had travelled for years, and their wills were all but broken by their lack of success. Their last lead had brought them to this lake, but they’d found it to be devoid of even the slightest lead. Here, as a tribe of mutated Bohra began to surround the group, they finally collapsed. Aelthos, for the third time in his life after his change at the altar and leap into the portal, placed his life in the hands of a greater being than he. Here, despairing for his son and their family’s fates, he prayed for salvation.
Part IV: Fenn
Whether by luck or by the will of a higher being, they were saved that day. As the Bohra closed in, the mountains framing the valley trembled and shook as great sheets of white thundered down around them, annihilating the small army of Bohra that had surrounded them and subsiding enough by the time it reached them to only push them onto the ice covering the lake.
Also, perhaps because he sensed the avalanche, or perhaps of sheer luck in passing, Wyrvun, the Aengudaemon that had once fallen to corruption, learned of their survival, their drive in searching for sanity. Delving into Aelthos' half-mad mind, he pressed himself in a vision to Aelthos, delivering a verdict - bind himself to the Lord of the Deep Cold and have his people returned to sanity, or condemn all that had followed him those many years ago to the continuation of the painful spiral they had endured. Aelthos made up his mind in a heartbeat, and the effects were felt the next.
When they returned to their laboratory, they were welcomed with great fanfare. To their new savior, Wyrvun, they dedicated shrines, temples, even their laboratory to him, renaming it to Fenn for the crystalline sheet that had covered the lake, saving Aelthos' group from death by Bohra or avalanche. They so truly followed their new lord that they took to calling themselves Mali’fenn, and neither Wyrvun nor Aelthos would stop them. Those joyous times, however, would not last. Only three years later, Aelthos would pass in his sleep. He was given a grand funeral, with a display of magic and people none of them had seen since Elcihi. It, however, raised the question of who would be the next head of those of the Deep Cold. Thill’al, that notion which had separated them originally from the other Mali’aheral of the city, gave their answer - his son, he who had inherited his father’s silver eyes and “perfected” features. There could be no other.
They were a new people, then, with large numbers and a new leader. Aelthos II, whose original name is now lost to time, declared Fenn a Princedom in honor of Malin, only true king of the Elves. He became Grand Prince, for he was declared thill’onn, born of purity. His people, some now exhibiting the traits of those who had joined later rather than those created, worked to make their newfound Princedom their pride, and Aelthos II would open the Princedom to the outside world.
Modern History | The Second Phase [This is a quick recap of events since the race began play]
The Snow Elves’ entry into the world at large, however, was not met with the fanfare Aelthos II perhaps expected. Instead, what awaited them was the grim reality of the Fringe’s early years. In an attempt to stabilize the human realms, the Snow Elves were turned into scapegoats, blamed for their problems, and executed en masse. The few that survived fled to the far corners of the world, and the Princedom collapsed. When, half a century later, they began to coalesce once more, again they were purged - this time a matter of principle rather than politics. So began a cycle that would last until the end of the Fifth Empire, when a Tundrak warlord would help lead a coalition to collapse that beacon of human dominance. Upon that change, the Princedom began a long, relatively uninterrupted existence of isolated peace. Eventually, however, that Princedom too would see its end - not by the wars of the past centuries that had inflicted so much horror upon their small world, but to the inevitable decay that all Elven societies eventually face, that of declining population emptying their splendorous cities.
The Sundering | The Third Phase [The New Stuff]
The decline of Elven societies that caused the fall of such polities as Vira’ker and the earliest iterations of Haelun’or, however, would not have the same fallout as the slow death of Fenn, for a simple reason - the curse of the Snow Elves had always been compounded as compared to those of their brethren. The Snow Elves had once been High Elves, after all, before their alterations at the Word Altar - and, had it not been for the timely intervention of a higher power, would never have survived to the modern era. They, for a millenia, strictly followed the teachings of their founders, laying prayers and worship at the altars of Wyrvun, their patron deity. This was the cornerstone of Fennic society, and indeed they were kept safe from unnatural corruptions.
Fenn’s decay, however, meant the decay too of their religious systems - in the end, the Grand Prince made a decision to try to improve upon the ways of his forefathers, creating the Idhren’tirn and promoting the worship of six lesser beings, whom they called Facets. The Contract was made tenuous with the addition of these beings, but still it held for a time. The final straw, however, was the reclusion of many Aengudaemonic powers that began in Arcas, among which was Wyrvun - and with it, the bond that had been forged between Aelthos of ancient legend and his god was broken at last.
The effects of this were felt immediately - across each Snow Elf’s bodies rippled what was to be called the Event, the aftereffects of the Word Altar finally affected them as it had affected Lomal’s followers so many years ago, their alterations ripping apart their minds and bodies. Yet Tayl’s event had happened in the years of legend - of Larihei and Lomal, even of Horen and Krug. What had once been a major mark upon the altered elves had long degenerated, whether through interbreeding or through time, into less purposeful tendrils of deific magic within their beings. Many would survive the weakened backlash caused by their ancestors’ decadence, though found themselves altered beyond recognition in the aftermath of the collapse of their passed-down alterations. The newly-reborn sons and daughters of the Deep Cold would have to find a path in their new forms, or not at all.
The trademark of Sundered Elves is the effervescent glow of their eyes and hair - shocking, almost radiant shades unnaturally light up their irises, and their hair accented by luminous highlights. Their eyes themselves can be so altered, in fact, that the entirety of the eye is a single color, appearing almost as a glowing orb. Their bodily makeup too is changed - where once their skin was pale, now it is nearly translucent, and beneath their skin the pulsing of blood in blue veins can be easily tracked by their dull glow.
The appearances of their forefathers, however, is not truly lost - their eyes range in the same colors as previous, from whites, to electric blues, to deep amethyst, and everything in between. The glow in their hair matches, though now their hair’s natural colors are limited purely to the whites they were so known for.
Thin frames, though not quite so thin as their High Elven ilk, are the norm of the Sundered Elves, their average limits capped by the Event. Normal heights, too, are reduced - 5’6” remains the floor, but none grow taller than 6’1”.
Another key alteration, however, is the appearance of Quirks – that is, physical manifestations in some part caused by the ripples of the backlash. These can come in any number of forms – from unique coloration (think birthmarks) on the skin, perhaps vaguely resembling animals, as the Word Altar was so often used to mark Lomal’s followers – to ingrowth of a patch feathers, to warped or misshapen bone or facial structure. This is not enforced for use, and is not allowed to be used for any mechanical benefit. Quirks vary throughout the Sundered Elves, but rarely is it completely different from parent to child – if a parent has a quirk, for instance, it’s likely that if the child has one, it’ll be similar in some degree.
Mental inadequacies can also be passed down among Sundered Elves, a remnant of the mental deficiencies once rampant among their population. It is encouraged, but not enforced, that if a parent is afflicted with something, the child also rp as having that same affliction. These can stack as well.
I’d set up a potential new cultural doctrine for Sundered Elves, but as there is currently an established playerbase (though it’s somewhat inactive atm), their culture will be the moving-forward culture for this new phase.
They get to look cool.
Their eyes and hair glow in the dark. 4 block radius. Obviously not through walls. Not useful against any magics or creatures. Just for seeing, I guess.
They can see well in the dark.
V. General Red Lines
-All Sundered Elves are full-on lunatics by the age of 500. Please think of it like this - imagine an old man, say in his early nineties. His friends from youth, from college, maybe from the military - they’re likely all dead. If his wife isn’t dead, she’ll die soon, and he knows it. What he remembers of the past, if he remembers it, is faded. Now, take this imaginary old person, and imagine them living twice as long. Then double that.
-No different-colored eyes.
-No multicolored eyes.
-No gigantism, no dwarfism.
-No deity magic. The tendrils left behind by Tayl’s Altar still affect them to some degree, preventing connections to other Aengudaemons or their powers.
-No dark magic. The self-sacrificial nature of dark magic would rip them apart.
-Voidal magic is ok.
-Quirks (Defined in Description) may not be used for any mechanical or crp or pvp benefit whatsoever – they are meant to be a unique aspect of the character, but cannot be used for anything useful.
-IMPORTANT SIDENOTE: All current Snow Elves will be given the opportunity to choose between becoming a Sundered Elf or reverting to High Elves upon this lore’s acceptance. This is to let magic-mongers keep their stuff if they’d like without really altering their characters, and the rest of us get to be Sundered Elves. Win/win.
VI. Purpose [OOC]
I’ve been hearing for about two years now that people are planning on rewriting the Snow Elf lore into something less janky and more unique. It’s true - my original lore was essentially planned out in such a way as to scrape by and make it in through the rules at the time, because the group had been trying to become a subrace for four years at that point and it had gone nowhere. It was more of a desperation play than anything else, and it was a measure of the times - change and unique rp was generally shot down as special snowflake (even though, ironically, we’re on a fantasy minecraft server), and complaints included but were not limited to the fact that many of us had been human players, that the dark elves were still weak, and that we weren’t incredibly different from High Elves.
Well, they never rewrote it, so here’s me doing it for them.
owo what’s this? a link to the past snelf lore? omg who wrote it?
Me. I wrote the original Snow Elf lore. This whole thing was a giant ego-stroking maneuver. Accept it please, so that there’s also physical differences between this subrace and High Elves.
Credits to @Junar for telling me deal, and to @Gladuos for telling me to do it.