Orion: The Explorers of Westmarch
“Humans are all short-lived. Ephemeral, as we of the Elder Races say. They come and go as the seasons — but the families of the powerful ones live on for a time. Their cities and dominions bloom like spring flowers, only to wither and die in the summer sun. But the Elves endure. We are as a year to their hour, a decade to their day.”
-Magistrate Aiden Direnni
The elves of Orion are known to be a strange and diverse people. Humans will often find elves to be as strange as they find orcs and goblins. The elves who live among humans are viewed as approachable as they have integrated with their neighbors no having similar ideologies as humans. The elves of Lurien and the Vasaraset Isles are distant from other races and care little for affairs outside their borders as they view most other races as short-sighted and petty. They are three distinct different subraces of elves, each of their own having their own cultures.
The high elves, or the Altmer as they are called by other elves, of the Vasaraset Isles are isolated, caring little for the world outside. In their reclusion they search to master the mysteries of magic, whilst revering their ancestors in a unique way among the races of Orion. The living Altmer of the Vasaraset Isles worship the honored dead, Altmer who die are reanimated. They are restored by positive energy to become walking dead. Though undead animated by evil magic are plentiful in Orion, the Altmer deathless are different.
They are not evil, nor are they mindless. The deathless fight alongside their descendants to protect the Vasaraset Isles and the elf race.
The wood elves, or the Bosmer, hail from the province of Lurien. Rejecting the formalities of the civilized world, the wood elves discarded lavish living for a life in the wilderness, among nature, the trees, and animals. In fact, their major cities are actually located in giant walking trees that roam the forest province of Lurien. They decorate their bodies to resemble their forest surroundings. Because of this, many view them as barbarians. Despite their infamy, they are known to be extremely agile and quick. Their nimbleness serves them best in any art involving thievery. Many are well respected archers, due to their inherent mastery of the bow.
The drow, or the Dumner, were descended from an earlier subrace of dark-skinned elves, the drow were banished from the surface world for following the goddess Lolth down the path to evil and corruption. Now they have built their own civilization in the depths of the Underdark, patterned after the Way of Lolth. Drow adventurers are rare, as most of them live underneath the surface following the evil way of Lolth. Drow society is matriarchal, militaristic, and heavily influenced by religion. Their city-states are formed in huge underground caverns but frequently at war with one another. These cities are ruled by the most powerful of the families (or houses) and although the power of the many families changes often, the top few usually remain stable.