The Arvellon Seed
Watchers of the Harvest Moon
“From golden trees, we keep vigil.”
The Autumnal Lore
The Arvellon Seed is one of the smaller and lesser known tribes amongst the first migration of Mali’ame. Whilst others adorned themselves in unique and colorful markings and apparel, the Wood Elves of the Arvellon were only identifiable by their shared physical traits and their name. Yet even this left them confused with the seedless brothers and sisters.
However the Mali’ame of the Arvellon did not much mind this for centuries to come. They enjoyed the ease in which they could meld within the rest of their tribal society, watching and listening as the Wildcats of Felixii do. Little is known concerning their worship of the Wildcat Princess, as is most things with the feline mani. Similarly shrouded is the seed’s later adoption of worship to Kwakwani, the Trickster Raven. Though they took to these new ways and meshed them with that of Felixii’s, creating the unique and unknown culture that they are in the modern age.
In the times of Malin and the nomadic Mali’ame, the Arvellon were led by a man known as Carsul’il. Known among his kin as the Laughing Lynx for his hearty attitude and his peculiar style in hair. Carsul’il was the first to take on the name of Arvellon, and the founder of their ame’lie, a grove considered to be only myth and named the Harvest Wood for some said it was a place of perpetual autumn that was always bathed in a copper and gold light from the rays of sun shining through the canopy.
While most of the tales sprung from this age, and of Carsul’il specifically, are considered myth and the true events that happened are lost to the winds of time, the more modern era of the Arvellon is easier to recollect if similarly unknown to anyone but the Arvellon. Carsul’il eventually disappeared into the wilds as most ancient mali’ame do, leaving behind his ways for his second child, Merriel Arvellon. Unlike her father, Merriel did not have many daring adventures. She preferred the quiet and watchful side of their ways, living her life upon a simple farmstead with her mate and listening to the breeze for all manner of news and secrets until the day she had her first and only child, Miklaeil.
Miklaeil was bound to take after his grandfather from the day he began to walk, always grinning and dashing about from one adventure to the next with the clever wit of a cat. Only his mother could truly tame his lust for the thrill and unknown, until the day he came of age for manhood. Miklaeil gathered what few things he owned and set off into the world, leaving a supportive but deeply saddened Merriel behind. Years past and the young Arvellon found himself in what was known as the Dominion of Malin.
It was here that Miklaeil decided to first attempt securing a steady life after thirty or so years of travel, though doing so cost him the identity of his ancestors within him. He donned bronze and then silver plate, shouted cries of war in the name of various princes and princesses, and even took on the name and beliefs of another seed entirely in his patriotic vigor. He began to look less and less like that of Carsul’il, and his letters to his mother grew less and less filled with wonder and joy but instead with grim and dark experiences. It was about this time that Merriel Arvellon died, caught in an accident with farm equipment.
Years past and Miklaeil gradually fell back into the old ways of his grandfather, Carsul’il. His constant grin and cheeky quips became his trademark, and his vigilant and cat-like eyes always watched with a certain mischievous glint. Twas long after the Dominion collapsed when he became a Lord upon the council of Aegrothond, then yet more until he met the lovely Empyreal Princess of Alderyn, Layla Le’Cai. It was not long after noticing the same playful glint in her eyes that he fell in love and returned fully to the ways of Carsul’il. Between the two of them, the Arvellon seed’s history and culture were reborn into something both new and old.
Beliefs and Traditions
The ways of the Arvellon are deeply rooted in Aspectism and the Mani pantheon, basing most all their various styles and values upon that of the old ‘ame teachings.
Aspectism and the Mani pantheon are both well-cherished parts of the Arvellon culture, most everything about them being divined from these practices. However, like most other Seeds, the Arvellon worship a select few Mani in particular. Those being Felixii, Princess of Wildcats, and Kwakwani, Princess of Ravens.
Both of which heavily influence the day-to-day lives of the Arvellon, making for Elves with an odd mixture of secretive yet colorful personalities, flitting back and forth with words and actions like a cat or bird at play. Often times these Elves make offerings to both Mani in the form of tricks and pranks upon those deserving of it, or merely for the fun of it.
Elves born of the Arvellon typically share the same set of physical traits, depending on the circumstances of their birth. An Elf carrying the traits of the Arvellon would be bronzed or tan in skin tone, usually a warm hue of some sort. Their hair tends to be curly or unruly in varying shades of red and brown. This coupled with brown or green eyes make them quite suitable for their favorite season, Autumn.
Their apparel tends to reflect the colors of Autumn- Red, gold, yellow, and orange in various shades- to symbolize the changing and colorful personalities of the Arvellon and to acknowledge the natural cycle.
Tattoos designed and drawn by the wonderful Numirya
A recent and modern addition to the rites of the Arvellon is the ilmyumier, thought up and designed by Layla. The tattoo implements three of the most prevalent parts of the Arvellon’s unique culture with the head of a Wildcat, the wings and feathers of a Raven, and the colors and symbols of their beloved season Autumn.
Along with the primary ilmyumier that is found on the dominant arm, Arvellon of this age are known to wear a stripe of paint across their eyes during times of war and unrest to bring good fortune to them and their families.
Love is sacred and precious to the autumn Elves of the Arvellon, an emotion and act held dearly since the days of Carsul’il and the Harvest Wood. Making such a declaration toward another Elf is a grand and life changing event for the Arvellon. To them, there is only one such person to be found in their lives and it is an irreversible, unbreakable bond through both mind, body, and spirit.
While not used until later in the seed’s existence, there is a binding ritual used to cement this connection between two Elves. Before an altar of Felixii and Kwakwani, the two would arrive in secret during the height of a Harvest Moon. Both would wield ceremonial aurum blades to cut the others palms. After the blood flows from both hands on either lover, the bloodied blades are laid crossed upon the altar before the two clasped hands to mix the blood of their palms and in doing so, intertwining the essence of their bodies and spirit.
Once the ritual is complete, it’s said that the mates develop a true and absolute bond. While it’s not known whether this is merely firm belief, or if something truly binds the souls of the lovers, it works. These Arvellon lovers remain together until death, and even then it is said that their spirits pass on as one.
Hunt of the Harvest Moon
Every year during the Harvest Moon, when the night is bathed in strong orange light, the Arvellon host a ceremonial hunt that begins at moonrise and ends at sunrise of the next day. While the setting is an ominous and foreboding one, filled with shadows cast by the Harvest Moon’s light, the Elves who partake in it are filled with a playful vigor in their hunt.
Typically, they will hunt until they find the largest game that they’re able to fell and bring it back to wherever the others are camped. There they wait until all the other hunters return with their prizes, to which a grand feast is held in honor of the peculiar phase of the moon.
((More to be added as RP and ideas progress. Credits to Numirya for a ton of help with traditions and tattoos!))