Peoples of Tòlanar #19: Sirlazè (Wood Elves)

SIRLAZÈ (Wood Elf)

[sir-LAH-zee]

The Sirlazè. Which means “forest lords” inhabit the vast primeval temperate forest that stretches across the northern coast of Tòlanar. They have yellow to coppery-red hair, which contrasts with their lightly tanned skin. Their eyes are generally light brown, although bright green is not uncommon. Hazel or blue eyes are exceptionally rare, cropping up only two to ten times in an entire generation. Superstitious Sirlazè believe that twins who have blue or hazel eyes are an omen of good fortune for both the twins and Sirlazè as a whole. Thus far, they have not been disappointed.

Male Sirlazè archer wearing "elven" cloak to blend into the forest vegetation.
Male Sirlazè archer wearing “elven” cloak to blend into the forest vegetation.

Sirlazè clothing is much less gaudy than one would normally expect from an elf. The focus of their clothing is to allow the wearer to blend with the woods easily. A typical outfit is dark brown and green, or tan and russet in fall. Winter finds Sirlazè wearing white leather so that they can hide in snow.

Sirlazè are often described as wild and temperamental. This is true to the extent that these elves are a very emotional people. They live with their hearts, not their minds. Whatever they feel, they know it is the right answer. Logic plays little part in their lives, for logic cannot save one from the charging boar or the falling tree. Intuition and strength are all that counts in the wildwood.

Sirlazè are an independent folk and do not lightly brook intruders into their forests. Anyone, even another elf, who even draws near to a Sirlazè settlement (within three miles) will have a constant, unseen escort of at least two Sirlazè (possibly more) until the intruder leaves the area. Unless the settlement is directly threatened, the Sirlazè will leave the intruder strictly alone. Occasionally (say 25% of the time) Sirlazè will allow trespassers to know that they are being watched. If those encroaching on the settlement draw too near and evince hostile intent, the Sirlazè have no compunctions about utterly destroying them

Sirlazè have a notable disinterest in the arcane arts. To a wood elf, the wizard’s spells are little different from the mason’s castle walls or the tiller’s plow – a means of controlling the natural world, which is contrary to the common ethic of living in harmony with nature rather than trying to dominate it that so many wood elves espouse.

Sirlazè Lands
Sirlazè Lands

Sirlazè commonly feel that they are in harmony with their natural surroundings and an examination of their art helps to justify this belief. While Sirlazè do not wander like wild animals they do their best to make a minimal impact on their natural surroundings, a fact reflected in their architecture. Frequently, Sirlazè homes are made of natural fieldstone or carefully furnished wood but on occasion Sirlazè have been known to do without even these creature comforts, living in the limbs of mighty trees or sheltered caves, rejecting furniture or any possessions they cannot carry with them. So close do Sirlazè villages resemble their surroundings that outsiders have been known to wander through one without even noticing.

In keeping with their naturalistic inclination, Sirlazè are not particularly fine metalworkers and have no interest in developing any such skills. However, Sirlazè are among some of the world’s finest carpenters and stoneworkers, masters in the crafting of bows and arrows as well as in leather tanning. Sirlazè have even developed a number of specialized arrows, including those that fly further than usual as well as some that are used as signal devices. So carefully guarded are Sirlazè crafting secrets that even experienced fletchers from other races have difficulty emulating Sirlazè designs. Sirlazè leather armor also often doubles as camouflage, disguising a Sirlazè hunter from potential enemies.

While Sirlazè feel that is best to make a minimal impact on their surroundings, the race has no particular aversion to meat-eating and are passionate hunters. Many hours of the typical Sirlazè’s life is spent on the hunt, which is both a practical activity and a pleasurable one. Most of the time that Sirlazè are not hunting they are enjoying themselves at ease within the branches of their forest homes. Sirlazè associate more often with the animals of the forest than with any other beings. Sirlazè do not, however, keep pets like other races do, but instead form bonds with local wildlife in a manner similar to that of a ranger. Wood elves are particularly fond of giant owls and often have them guarding their homes or, more rarely, giant lynxes.

Sirlazè characters have the following game-specific (3.5) characteristics.

  • Stat adjustments: +2 Strength, +2 Dexterity, –2 Intelligence, –2 Constitution.
  • Size: Medium (As Medium creatures, Sirlazè have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size).
  • Movement: Sirlazè base land speed is 30 feet.
  • Magic Resistance: Sirlazè are immune to magic sleep effects, and a +2 racial saving throw bonus against enchantment spells or effects.
  • Vision: Low-Light Vision (A Sirlazè can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. She retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions).
  • Weapon Proficiency: Sirlazè receive the Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for the longsword, rapier, longbow (including composite longbow), and shortbow (including composite shortbow) as bonus feats.
  • Perception: Sirlazè get a +2 racial bonus on Listen, Search, and Spot checks. A Sirlazè who merely passes within 5 feet of a secret or concealed door is entitled to a Search check to notice it as if she were actively looking for it.
  • Favored Class: Ranger.
  • Level Adjustment: +0

Based on the Sylvan Elf section of the Complete Book of Elves, the Wood Elf entries on the D&D Wiki and the Forgotten Realms Wiki ()

Source for the image.

 

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