D R O W Tenebris niger elvii
Class: Dark Elf
Other names: earth Elf, sub Elf, underground elf, blackskin, drowling, darkling, darksin
Allegiance: Dark Legion of Demons
- Drow are an elf people of the Neroz category
- They are shorter and smaller on average than the Light Elf categories, but average taller than Verdennos Elf people or Wollumis elves. A drow woman would be about a head shorter than a Human woman.
- They usually have very dark skin, from light greys to near black, with many drow having shades of blue or purple skin due to cross breeding with other dark elves.
- They have light hair, frequently pure white, but just as likely, differing shades white, blonde, dirty blonde, some reds, and light brown hair.
- They usually have red eyes, sometimes having blue and green eyes.
- They have enhanced low light vision beyond that of elves and Dwarfs, but magical 'Darkvision' allowing sight in absolute darkness does not exist in Aiers
- Females are usually taller than males. Often, females are literally more massive, but it is also common for the weight of the genders to be about equal. However, not ALL drow races are so, the Cavrest drow have males who are much larger than the females, and other drow societies might also have this trait.
It would be virtually impossible to make a blanket statement encompassing the Drow as they actually have some sub-races and multiple different cultures and nations. But a few guidelines are nearly universal:
- They live underground in the subterranean world of Kazrrad, except for some few towns, villages and outposts on the surface, usually in desert oases or hidden mountain valleys. In the Modern Age, following The Cataclysm, most drow came to live on the surface due to the underworld becoming largely wrecked.
- They are Matriarchal. That is, they are generally ruled or otherwise headed by drow females. However, multiple sorts of governments and gender roles exist between drow cultures. It is not uncommon to see drow males as warriors or traders, depending on the culture.
- The Drow are clannish, with groups of interrelated families being part of a 'House', headed by a powerful matron. Sometimes a powerful House might effectively rule a city-state. Further, Houses most frequently have some sort of military power of their own, many times used to fight other Drow houses.
- The Drow tend to be insular, with a city-state government, with several subject towns and villages. Drow 'empires' might consist of multiple subject city-states and multiple cultures.
- The Drow are almost always theocracies to varying degrees. Priestesses ruling the city-state, or having an important role in doing so.
- The goddess Lolh or Lolth is very often worshipped. Often as the principal deity, but very often as a secondary goddess in a pantheon, and rarely, not worshipped at all, as in the case of the Kalhari.
- The drow usually have a close connection to spiders, which usually means they have business in silk production and as clothiers.
- They have a somewhat deserved reputation as druggists and experts in various poisons, both often derived from spiders, but also from other invertebrates or exotic fungi.
- They've often learned great metalworking skill from Dwarfs and Draak Harg (dragon men), or have developed techniques all their own.
- They are almost always slave holding cultures and often slavers to some degree or other. Usually other Drow, but always other races as well, very often Goblinoids for hard or awful work, or dwarves or draak harg for skilled slaves.
History of the DrowEdit
The Drows, a kind of Dark Elf (ves), seem to have originated from the steppes and deserts from Hieyoks. These folks of nomadic hunters and gatherers of black skin and white hair -who called themselves originally Neroz - wandered, following the game their hunted, as the “Wars of the Gods” ragged, and the whole ecosystem of Aiers seemed to be at stake.
During a time of warm climate, they settled in the shores of the sea of Hieyokscream around the 22.000 or 20.000 before the Apparition of Humanity (b.a.H). However, with the departure of the “Gods” and the “ancient races”, destroyed in their wars, the climate began to change again, became cooler and cooler: This obligated first the Zuleis, ancestors of the Hake dark elves, and then the Rossnes –ancestors of High, Sylvan, Grey, Doroz, wild and Sand elves- to leave their ancestral homeland in Polforia, and migrate across Hieyoks to Ushaenor.
But the temperature keep dropping, and the hunting areas and lands of the nomad Neroz became invaded with the ice and snow, and now was time for them to migrate:
Once in Polforia, the more aggressive black and purple elves needed to fight for survival against beast peoples: K'Nir, Loranor and harpies, and they forced to leave the blue, green and pink elves from their ancestral lands of Polforia.
About the 16.000 b.a.H, the Wollumis decided to migrate to their own lands, to the forests of Nubla, meanwhile the Neroz become the masters of Polforia.
The Neroz tribes, slowly, began to expand, and eventually they learned about the domestication of animals and plans: agriculture. Permanent settlements and villages will began to appear, as they began to become from nomad gatherer-hunters to semi-nomad shepherds and sedentary farmers, near the 14.000 b.a.H.
Empire of DrowEdit
These settlements began to grow, becoming small towns: and eventually, around the 13.000 b.a.H, the Neroz will leave the prehistory, to become the historic drow, name taken from one of these first kingdoms that come to be, as their cities adopted written systems.
A first drow empire come to be: the first Empire the world of Aiers will ever see, expanding their influence in Polforia, and even beyond their natural borders. They ancient gods –according to the drow- ordered them to bring the light of civilization to their barbarian brothers, as well to domesticate the monsters (non-elfs: but the drow supremacy will not be uncontested: The ‘barbarians’, without organization or armies, were overrun and conquered, or forced out of the Empire of Drow. However, the barbarians learned from their conquerors and enemies: Verdennos, Zuleis, Rossnes and Wollumis elves began to adopt parts of the Drow culture and civilization, as well a more complex political organization aside from tribes and clans, to face the Empire of the Drow:
As long as the Empire of Drow was unified, their enemies couldn’t with them: but internal struggles, corruption, succession and civil wars weakened the empire from within…
About one thousand years of war will come in Aels, until the final defeat and destruction of the Empire of Drow: the other elven nations, aided by beast people and anyone who opposed the dark elves, defeated the drow armies, destroyed the drow cities, looting and plundering, killing each woman, man and children alike, bringing even their race to the brink of complete destruction.
The Empire collapsed: Cornered to their last lines of defenses, the drow retreated to the Underworld of Kazrrad about the 12.000 b.a.H:
As the Empire of Drow was in the eight of their power, they discovered the underworld and explored it, and they began to settle and live in it even before of the declination of their empire: So the transition wasn’t as painful or violent: but as they slowly lost their holds in the surface, they needed to become more and more secluded to Kazrrad.
But to rebuild their civilization, in the land of eternal darkness of Kazrrad, from the ashes of a destroyed world wasn’t an easy task, and it would be needed a thousand years, between the 12.000 to the 11.000 b.a.H for the sparkles of civilization to shine again, now deep down in the underworld of Kazrrad, as drow city states came to be.
Meanwhile they struggled to live in eternal shadows of Kazrrad, other drow survivors keep wandering the surface, the ones who will be the ancestors of the Canaia, the surface drow.
Ancient Kazrrad Drow city-states Edit
In the shadows, anemic and without sun, the black skin of the drow will turn lighter, to more grayish tones than their surface Canaia drow siblings, from obsidian and coal black. Meanwhile, their low light vision, having evolved from being nocturnal hunters on the surface, sharpened in the ever-present gloom of the underworld.
Ched'Lolthan would be one of the first ancient drow city-states of the underworld of Kazrrad, founded around the 12.200 b.a.H, followed then by Lolth'Ilthan, Llurth-Negeél, Luihalen'Tar, and Erehel-Sinu in the following 500 years:
The resources were limited, Kazrrad's environment was hard, and the competition high: the drow cities predated on each other, and war will become constant: but despise their terrible costs, the civilization flourished.
After about 1.500 years of Ched'Lolthan hegemony, the 10.000 b.a.H the city of Llurth-Negeél will achieve the hegemony, but not uncontested: Becoming the larger and more powerful drow city of Kazrrad, the other 12 mayor city states banded together, and the 9.500 will began the brutal War of the 13 cities , in which Llurth Negeél and their vassals will face all the other drow nations of Kazrrad:
Despite the war, the Negeél civilization will live their golden age around the 9.000 b.a.H: but finally, the permanent state of war, and meanwhile the other drow cities expanded in the underworld, the Llurt Negeél were cornered, and unable to expand any further, with internal struggles and the cost of war, declined:
The 7.000 b.a.H, finally their civilization will disappear, as a coalition of the drow followers of the Spider Goddess assaulted in a holy war, annihilating everybody except some few who where spared, to become slaves.
The Age of the SpiderEdit
The Confederation of drow cities, followers of the Goddess of the Spiders, Lolh, after defeating, destroying or converting the non believers in the War of the Holy Spider' ended fighting each other for the spoils and the influence: the confederation dissolved, and for long time, the drow dedicated to fight each other: meanwhile some philosophers speak about the imminent extinction of the drow by drow hand, Manzarraza was the more powerful city state between the 7.000 to the 4.000 b.a.H, and to keep that status, they were in a permanent cycle of wars.
However, this age of fratricidal war will come to an end, with the rise of Erehel-Sinu as new hegemonic drow city.
It wasn’t precisely an age of peace, but after that, the Age of the Spider will be remembered as chaos, and in this moment will be that the cult of Lolth will be seen as evil or demonic by other religions.
Erehel-Sinu, and the Dwarven wars Edit
Slowly but constant, the city under the Holy Mountain of Hortann, Erehel-Sinu, will reemplace the strongest and largest of the drow cities: the southern drow city, it was away from most of the constant combats and wars to avoid the destruction of it, near uncharted areas of Kazrrad to explore, settle and conquer, but capable of fighting the wars of the North.
This city will remain the title of the largest and more powerful drow city from the 4.000 b.a.H until the 1.000 since the apparition of Humanity: However, this wasn’t a time for the drow in Kazrrad, but for the Dwarves.
The dwarven civilization where some of the oldest of Aiers, and while the elves where still nomads in the surface, they where building cities and mines: For much time, they greater enemies in Kazrrad will be the Draak Harg, the dragon-kin as well the dragons, aside from the competence with other dwarven city-states:
But in the drow expansion –leaded by Erehel-Sinu- the hostile dwarven-drow relations will turn in a series of wars.
But near the 3.500 - 3.100 before the apparition of Humanity, the dwarves of Fronhost learned the secrets of the Iron: and their discoveries will be turn as weapons of war by the Dwarves of the Mines of Nortunk, a young Dwarven nation:
Nortunk first defeated and conquered all the surrounding dwarven nations, becoming the Empire of Nortunk: The Dwarves of Nortunk had become an incomparable, unstoppable power with their alliance with the Gmonia dwarves, and with their large armies, equipped with the better weapons and armors such masters of iron could create, there was no one who could challenge them.
the light-blue banner of the two hammers and anvil of the Mine of Nortunk will be found in all the destroyed drow cities of central Kazrrad: the loose confederation of drow states, gathered together in time of alarm, were completely defeated, and their armies routed: the survivors retreated to lick their wounds, learn the mysteries of this new “iron”, and hope to be ready when the dwarves come to them.
From the refugees of the destroyed drow cities, will surge the Mazalean nation, meanwhile in the south, Erehel-Sinu, the city under the Holy Mountian of Hortann –and dangerously close to Nortunk- received waves of refugees:
They needed to strength themselves, and rebuild their force, and to achieve that, they sought expansion:
Refugees and people afraid of the dwarven menace, marched to the south, to caves and tunnels unexplored until then:
Among the many colonies that were founded, were Ched’Nasan, the 2.600 b.a.H and Negeémiliel the 2.440 b.a.H, both cities who will become important drow civilizations in their own.
Descendants from Llurt Negeél –the city annihilated many generations ago, conquered the city by Erehel-Sinu and the survivors enslaved – the followers of the Cult of Negeé, a minor goddess of War in the pantheon will play a key part in the colonization of Southern Kazrrad.
Meanwhile in the north, the other drow cities, after the defeat in front of the Nortunk, and when returning home, will began –again- a series of fratricidal wars to fulfill the vacuum of power, in the south Erehel-Sinu lived again an age of splendor –under the shadow of Nortunk-, setting contact with the Flairie –dark elves- city states from the surface of the Unnline civilization trade relations, as well surface settlements
However, the feared final push of the Mines of Nortunk to finish the drow didn’t come: The 1.100 before the Apparition of Humanity, Nortkunk and Gmonia, allied, tried to replicate their success, conquering an empire –in the surface-. But what the Drow couldn’t do, was achieved by the sylvan elves from the Empire of Malvor.
With Nortunk, due their own greed, reduced again to be only other player –but still important- in the game of power in the underworld of Kazrrad:
However, as one enemy disappeared, other take the place: The High Elves of the Empire of Whide Axis: The 900 b.a.H, the High elves arrived in their large boats to Aels, to conquer and annex: a danger of new type, as they were the most powerful elf magicians, they will conquer and destroy the dark elves of Unnline, and force the drow surface settlements once again to the shadows of Kazrrad.
Apparition of Humanity: The Age of Invasions Edit
This didn’t affect directly the drow in the first moment: But the massive changes to the surface of the continent of Hieyokscream in about 50 years, as the Tekkno-loki magic of the humans shaped this world after their own, meant for the Drow that suddenly, immense extensions of Kazrrad collapsed, and thousands of new caverns and tunnels will surge, as other were dried from the water of the seas.
The year 100 happened the sudden fall of the Human civilization in flashes of light and fire that burn the lands: and then, the dramatic geological changes produced by the Tekkno-loki slowed down and were stopped by circa 120.
With new lands to explore and settle, not only Erehel-Sinu became part of the colonization and expansion there, with the possibilities of the surface expansion cut down by the High Elves, but as well their colonies participated, becoming more and more powerful in their own:
To the point that eventually, the 400 of the Human Age, Ched'Nasan will gain their independence from Erehel-Sinu in a brutal war against the Metropolis; example wich will be followed by Negeémiliel the 480.
However, the Age of Invasions doesn’t have that name without motive: Meanwhile in the south new drow civilizations appeared, founded in these new caves of Kazrrad as Sunner, Sia'Peiran and Ched'Ipango, the geographical, climatic and migrations triggered in Aels and Zarhuy a wave of invasions, of races and nations migrating, expulsated from their own homelands: Goblins, orcs and other monsters will go down to the underworld; pushed by Humans and Kanovs:
And in their way, they will destroy many drow city-states in Kazrrad, or trigger the foundation of new ones, like Ched'l Sulho around the 300, meanwhile the newly independent states found colonies in their own, as Negeémiliel founded Ched'Hihrin the 666 a.a.H.
All of these changes will lead, finally, to the end of the Erehel-Sinu Hegemony around the year 1.000 since the apparition of Humanity.
The Warring states Edit
For the next centuries, between the 1.000 and the 1.700 will be a time simply know as the Warring states: chaotic era of permanent war, against the non-drow and between the drow, with Ched’Nasan playing a principal role, as well of Ched’Hihrin, which won their independence from their metropolis, and Kalhari will be founded.
Negeémiliel Hegemony Edit
The year 1.365, in the Island of Demonatch, from the Mount Satanmet, appeared the demons for a first time. Slowly, they will manage to become one of the greater powers of Aels, in the Dark Legion of Demons: however, their assention would not be too easy or undisputed.
When, with the fall of Dume the 1.676 began the Dark Age of Demons, among the southern drow raised a new hegemonic power near the 1.700 a.a.H: Negeémiliel.
Meanwhile in the north, the dungeandar drow of Manzarraza, and in the south, Sia'Peiran, will play similar roles: and entering in the diplomatic games of the demon lords of the Dark Legion, for their own interests and the promises for the complete hegemony over all the drow, A loose drow confederation will be founded, ally from the Dark Legion of Demons, fighting at their side in the First War of the Power (2.203-2.223) against the humans and their allies.
This war will be lost by demons, and power struggles will follow it in the drow cities, but the Negeémi will remain as the principal drow city, after fighting a series of wars and taking as vassals Ched'Hihrin, Ched'Nasan and Erehel-Sinu, becoming the largest drow city and Empire until that moment:
But internal struggles, wars to remain in their hegemonic position and the competence with the Nigromante of Tok-Thoria slowly weakened their position: And in the second coming of darkness, the return of the great demon lords and the Second War of the Power (2.434-2.539), the Dark Legion wanted a puppet drow state, more directly in their control: So was founded Zaghäl.
Zaghäl, the twisted city of the Wicked Edit
Zaghäl, the twisted city of the Tainted drow was founded the 2.466 a.a.H. as a confederation of the dark Elves, vassals of the demons, the Hake elves, from Ushaenor being chief among them. Certain drow states joined the predominantly Hake ruled city in 2.511.
After the first war, and during the second, the demons decided that the unsure allies that were the drow city-states, more focused in their political goals than to the war, wanted to achieve direct control over them: and that’s why was founded the Twisted City of Zaghal of the dark elves.
Vassal state of the Dark Legion, having endless hordes of orcs, monsters and creatures at their disposition, as well the most powerful mages and warlocks trained in demonic arts, superior to any other elven mages, Zaghal become the most important dark elf city:
However, it was a twisted nightmare of blood and destruction, tool of war of the demons: fanatics driven in a unholy war to crush the light elves. Seen as corrupted by the other drows and dark elves, their military force was more charismatic for them, trying to avoid a direct war against them.
Zaghal will be one of the four factions that fight during the demon civil war, in which will break the Dark Legion: the War of the Four Black Kings (2.535-2.539), fought for the place of the right hand of Sataan, after the failed coup d’etat of Satman the Fallen.
And during the Third War of the Power (2.633-2.635) Their armies will fight as far as Ushaenor and Aels… before the complete destruction of the Twisted City of Zaghal in the Great Cataclysm.
The cataclysm and the drows, the drows in the human WorldEdit
The Cataclysm changed completely and forever Aiers, scarring the world itself: The massive earthquakes, as the world itself shifted, destroyed great extensions of the Underworld of Kazrrad: even worse than in the surface, it really reached apocalyptical proportions in the underworld, where whole civilizations disappeared but some few survivors.
Once again, the civilization of the drow was destroyed, and would have been needed centuries to rebuild them again: but this time they didn’t had the time:
Many needed to migrate to the surface, as the Kazrrad wasn’t anymore an underworld, but ruined caves: ancient trade routes and traditional resources destroyed, once in the surface, their settlements didn’t remained independent long before being annexed by humans.
Other cities, fortunate enough to survive The Cataclysm, as well with enough space to continue their live underground, would escape from this destiny for longer time:
However, like with most of the other non-human nations, the First and Second Industrial Age, the rise of National States and the human imperialism and colonization, they time as independent nations was counted, despise some minor tribes and nations resisting, deep down in their caves…