The Tiraelhon, (humans
call them "Sand Elves") is a tribe of elves
that reside in the Sands of Maechalan on the continent Aeruillin, and can often
be seen visiting the port city Shan'Furionnis, and the cities in Thylascuran.
They seem very savage compared to most elves,
and they have completely forgotten the High
Goddess Avá and worship their own set of gods. The reason for this is that
they felt forsaken by Avá when She let
them wander about in the wilderness. The gods that they worship are called the
Dietrae and the Airae, and they are the forces of nature and aspects of the
mind that affect the Tiraelhon's daily life. Although they seem mysterious,
their culture is very rich and well developed. The Tiraelhon are also well
known for their sour terirais, a lemon-type fruit, which grow best near the Sea
Appearance. Tiraelhon are very serious looking and are among the most unique elves. They are short, and thin with very sharply pointed ears. But instead of having only the top pointed, the bottom is also pointed and hangs down rather long. Their ears are pierced in both sexes in the outer ear along the lobe. They have their ears pierced for every one hundred-fiftieth year of being alive, having developed a very good metabolism and they can eat most foods without becoming ill. It is believed that this is due to their strenuous lifestyle but that has not been confirmed.
The Tiraelhon wear their age like a badge of pride. You can always tell the Elders from the youngsters, because as the Tiraelhon get older their skin darkens and their hair becomes a dark tint of gray. By the time any Tiraelhon reaches the limits of life at 700 years they have become very crisp and brown. The Tiraelhon are usually 1.7 peds in height and weigh slightly less than 1 pygge. Tiraelhon arms are very long propotionally and give them an almost barbarian look.
The Tiraelhon skin color is very dark, almost a brown or bronze color. It varies, depending upon the job of the elf, those that often work outside of the "dune homes" have dark brown skin, and those that are often inside have bronze skins. Hair color varies between ages, the younger elves have white hair that is often short, and a bit curled and the Elders have dark gray hair, which often becomes a lot more straight over time.
The Tiraelhon can be kind and caring to their own, but when working in their environment they are often very serious and focused. They form tight family bonds and care for their young and their elderly with such passion and tenderness. Tiraelhon are not shy and will always welcome visitors as long as they leave their weapons at the small passage storage room in every settlement except for Shylom'an. The Tiraelhon enjoy exploring, they often travel by sea to various places, but never stray too far from Aeruillin. A few have been seen as far north as the Thaelon in Sarvonia, although they were mistaken for dark elves and chased out of the forest. The Tiraelhon don't like to fight other races with weapons, but if they feel that the threat is great enough they will. But then the Tiraelhon train every member how to use an axe to fight. This is because they fear that what happened during the Dark Days may occur again, and they want to be prepared. They also manufacture a few weapons using the animal products that they hunt for.
The Tiraelhon have few facial expressions, because they seldom know how to actually show how they are feeling on their appearance. They can express it through actions and words. They can seem very boring to one who merely passes through their lands without staying long. Their smiles are not very pleasant as the Tiraelhon often have sharp, rugged teeth and brown lips.
On the other hand the Tiraelhon are very good listeners. Their minds never tire from listening to another's story or tale about even the tiniest things. Thus they have developed great memories that allow them to reach far back into their life and pull out events from their childhood.
Coat of Arms/Sign. The Tiraelhon do not have a coat of arms, because they seldom see a battle. They do however have a symbol, which is a pendant that every Tiraelhon must wear. It is a circle made of stone with the carving of the word "always" or everlasting " ó' ". It represents that unity that the Tiraelhon have with one another and how unbreakable those bonds are.
Territory. The Tiraelhon live in the Sands of Maechalan. This area was named after the goddess Maecha, who is the keeper of the sands and the giver of memories and destiny. They never make any permanent living areas out of the sparse land's boundaries. And although resources do not overwhelm them, they get what they need whether it be by trading or hunting. The name "Sands" can be very deceiving and they often make travelers believe that it is just a huge desert but it is not. The Tiraelhon have two major water sources, the Sea of Tardulan to the West and the Theranian Sea to the North. The Sea of Tardulan is often used for irrigation purposes, and the Theranian Sea is best used to gather salt, for fishing, or as transportation to many of the port cities in Southeastern Aeruillin. The Sands of Maechalan have a wide variety of animals that have been adapted to suit their environment, for example the earth eater, the largest known species of clam has been seen all over Aeruillin, although it originated within the Sands. There is a steady supply of flora as well, the Sands are a natural savannah and provide native plants with resemblances to corn, rice, wheat and berries.
They have seven major settlements. Their settlements are not very important to other races, but they are to the Tiraelhon. About one hundred-fifty Tiraelhon reside in the less prominent cities, and four hundred are residing in Nousais. The most important being Nousais, which lies in the heart of the Sands of Maechalan. It is a very difficult place to get to, and even when the majority of the tribe is traveling to a new home, at least two hundred-fifty Tiraelhon remain in Nousais. It is the home to the Temple of Sands, the only temple in the area that shows a painting of Nous standing back to back with the High Goddess Avá. The second largest city is Shylom'an. It is the major cultivation and domestication city for the Tiraelhon, and it is also the only city that allows people of other races to pass through the city without leaving their weapons at a designated area.
Next is Icropan, it is most notable for the highest population of earth eaters. Therefore, many are fearful when they reach the settlement’s edge and they often sprint across the dry grass. Icropan holds the Tent of Tears, which the Tiraelhon call "Malnaec Tiravá". It is the place where the scholar Mirae supposedly saw Icropio and Shyloma holding each other and crying after the Dietrae became savage killers during the Dark Days.
People. The Tiraelhon are quite philosophic and bring meaning out of everything as can be seen in their religion. The tribe was once known for traveling throughout the region of Aeruillin from the Plain of the Dead to the Dunes of Thiva, and they would write down the history of the places and the people they have visited. But due to recent droughts, and past wars these documents have been lost in the sands of time.
The Sand Elves are very keen and take note of almost everything. Their attention is easily obtained and once it is obtained they will keep an eye on you for as long as they see fit. The Tiraelhon have a rather sour outlook upon all of the Aviariá, except for Seyella who they have taken and recreated as their own goddess Maecha. They are very devout to their gods, and although they do not worship Avá, they believe their gods to be her children of sorts.
These elves have extraordinary accuracy, and they are great wielders of throwing axes. The Sands of Maechalan have a few mountainous parts that provide them with iron ore, copper, and bronze mines. They are also skilled at killing earth eaters, by using throwing axes made of bronze that can crack the shells after repeated blows. The armor of the clam can then be used to mold with iron ore and make a very durable armor, which the Tiraelhon sell and use only for major battles. The Tiraelhon have been known to also possess great upper arm strength and back strength and can hit an opponent from a pen away (equal to 5 peds).
The Tiraelhon were the first tribe in Aeruillin to make glasses, but it is believed that the gnomes made it before they did. This is a debate that often becomes very tense between scholars and historians. Many of the gnomes believe that the Tiraelhon stole their idea when the Tiraelhon god Fetra, wanted to give his people a special discovery. He traveled across the sea to find that the gnomes were creating something special. He envied that and took it to his own people, where he created the Daz Muriso, the volcano that sits in the southeast portion of the Sands of Maechalan.
The Tiraelhon take the material to make glass form the volcanic debris and bring it to their blacksmiths, which are short in number. The material is neither a solid nor a liquid but exists in a glassy state. The glass is cooled to a rigid state and it is then set out to cool off. Once it is cool they can begin carving it and can make the glasses or other items. The glass is often found in a few other colors such as light blues, greens, and browns depending on the raw material. If the material has an impurity than the glass will be a different color than white.
Housing. These elves that have chosen the Sands of Maechalan, live in extended family tents in a settlement, with guarded walls of stone and clay. These tents are made from the hides of the hirafan, a sluggish plated beast that eats the shrubs of the desert. The tents are often very large and can hold up to thirty Tiraelhon at one time. Since the Tiraelhon only stay in one place for one hundred-fifty years, everything they own is movable. The Tiraelhon have a tradition that they will never stay in one place for longer than the amount of years stated above. This is because Terira, the Goddess of Nature and Curiosity, promised to provide resources for the Tiraelhon as long as they reside in the Sands of Maechalan. They want to prove to everyone who doubts their Airae and Dietrae that no matter where they travel to in their territory they will always be cared for. They travel between the same seven settlements, and not all of the Tiraelhon take part in this travel. Some remain at the cities to protect it from bandits, or other things.
The tents are not all the same size; it
depends upon the rank of the Tiraelhon. If the Tiraelhon is an
prán then their home can hold about thirty-forty, and
if the Tiraelhon are simple gatherers
their tents will hold a bit less than eight. The tents are covered by a thin
blanket woven from strips of grass, painted with the dye from the
They do however, have settlements. They have seven of them, and the settlements are each surrounded by tall walls, made of stone, and clay. The inside of the settlement is mostly movable, save for the small temples, storage buildings, and other small buildings, like watchtowers at every corner of the settlement.
Clothing. The Tiraelhon prefer to wear long, very thin, light grey cloaks, with shirts underneath, in layers that only cover all of their bodies. The cloaks can be easily taken off by pulling them above the head. The Tiraelhon, if not wearing the cloaks, will wear grey skirts for both men and women, but the tops vary. The skirts all have black dye at the bottom of them. The women usually wear their skirts down to their calves, whereas the men usually wear them down to their thighs or knees.
The men will wear a sleeveless-shirt with the bottom of the shirt dyed black, plus white or dark grey turbans. The grey shirts have a pocket right above the belt. Both men and women wear belts with which they always carry their axes. They hardly use them unless they are attacked. Accessories are not a big thing, a Tiraelhon can usually be found with their symbol hanging around their neck, and they all have their ears pierced and wear bronze earrings.
But during festivals black is the required color for all. While battling anyone or anything the Tiraelhon wear black as well.
Diet. The Tiraelhon find a variety of foods in the Sands of Maechalan. Almost everything they kill will be edible, thanks to their metabolism and their resistance to illnesses. The Tiraelhon basically eat the following plants:
The maelon is the Aeruillin version of corn. It grows slowly in the harsh climate but when it does finally grow it is a beautiful sight, as the maelon covers the irrigation ditches near the Tiraelhon camps. This corn has very little juice and it has a very thick outer layer of skin.
It is believed that when the first group of unhappy Aeolrhans left Shan'Furionnis that Terira, the Goddess of Curiosity, blessed the elves with their first important fruit. It was named the terirais, and it is a shrub that produces berries that gives spice to many foods. Its leaves can be used to wrap foods and provide flavor while they are boiling and the berries can be used for both food, dye, and flavoring.
The poprais is very much like the wheat grown in Southern Sarvonia and Nybelmar. It can be used to make any number of food items, including breads, biscuits, and cakes. It can only be grown on the fertile shores of the Sea of Tardulan, which is why the Tiraelhon have various campsites along the southeastern coast of the sea.
Prickling Pango Cactus
The Prickling Pango Cactus is a green cactus with a red fruit. These delicious red fruits are completely edible in all parts, both leaves and actual fruit. It has very few visible needles, but some smaller ones that can make the hands itch and are very hard to remove.
Here are the animals that the Tiraelhon can eat and hunt, to use for shelters, weapons, clothing, and other byproducts:
The sigar is the average desert lizard. It usually comes in a brown, or black color and is very fast. It eats the eggs of the sand shatí, and the copperdeath. It can be found all over Aeruillin.
The hirafan is a sluggish, heavy animal with very thick skin that is worn like plated armor. It eats many of the shrubs and dry grass that can be found in Aeruillin, and has been known to dig into a few cactus to get water. The Tiraelhon can herd these but many prefer to hunt these. They can use their fat and skin for various products.
These are small owls that live in the giant cacti and prey upon most animals of the Sands of Maechalan. The feathers have often been used to make ornaments or for other decorative purposes.
This large disliked creature is an actual clam that has come from the sea and crawled onto the land choosing its home deep in the sands. It has a huge gaping mouth and sharp teeth that can be used to make sharp daggers. It is large enough to swallow two Tiraelhon whole. The earth eater has heavy, durable skin that is difficult to penetrate. It pushes itself out of the dirt by using a sharp powerful tail and opens its mouth allowing the earth to pour in. The sand is later expelled through the use of a hole in its rectum.
The Tiraelhon specialize in the use of
throwing axes. Their axes are made
from the tail fins of the earth eaters and the handle is made from the hide of
the hirafan. Although the Tiraelhon train, they pray that they will never have
to use their weapons. These
elves also use small daggers to allow them
to cut and skin animals and to fight in close quarters. The daggers are often
made from stone covered with a thin layer of armor.
Occupations. Occupations vary between the elves. The Tiraelhon go in different classes from Prán (literal translation means "heath", but in this case it is referring to the few Elders) to the Vaí (meaning "sight"). The Prán are the oldest members of the tribe, and each one represents one of the Airae. The Airae are the ultimate forces behind Tiraelhon religion, they do not interact with the other Dietrae, but they hold power over them. The Airae are Nous, the teller of tales, Icropio, the sender of Chaos, Shyloma, the seer of the Void, Novai, keeper of the Depth, Laecha, the master of time, and Damara, the daughter of Nous and the keeper of secrets and the giver of peace. Each Airae chooses an honorable Tiraelhon that best suites their personality and uses the elf as its vessel. The elf receives messages and visions from their Airae and they are the leaders of the Tiraelhon.
The Tiraelhon occupations can be summarized as follows:
The Aira are the actual clerics, they do not have a one on one connection with the Airae, but they do have that connection with the Dietrae. They can cast various spells concerning the Dietrae that they serve, and they are bound to serve only one of the Dietrae.
The Tirave are the caretakers, their job is to take care of both the newborn children and the Prán. As the Prán reach old age they start to go blind and need help getting around. The Tirave can only be women, and can only be the women that are barren, or have never had children.
The Soorán are the Tiraelhon form of merchants. They travel around southern and eastern Aeruillin and trade items with the other tribes and cities. They travel on foot, always on foot, and carry no more than three woven bags with them at a time. The reason they travel on foot is so that they can get a feel for the lands they are traveling and they will know how much of a struggle it will be for the other Tiraelhon to get to the lands.
The Téth are the hunters for the group. They travel around the Sands of Maechalan and hunt for food and then deliver it to the Sánis to be cleaned and gutted, and then prepared to eat. The Téth can only be male, and must be skilled in accuracy and the use of a throwing axe.
The Maré, it is relative to the Styrásh word for "water", but it actually means "bringer of moisture" to the Tiraelhon. The Maré are the few elves that go down to the irrigation ditches and gather the crops that the farmers have prepared and they also gather the water. They often live with the farmers on the shores of the seas and near the irrigation ditches.
Féarir, these are the farmers, they grow the crops and make sure that they are ripe and fresh. They often live far away from many Tiraelhon campsites and have to travel distances to visit family and friends.
Sánis are the ones that receive the food from the Féarir, and the Téth. It is their responsibility to clean and cook the food if they are having a feast or community festival. They must also send it to the Soorán to turn into items and to sell. They will distribute the cleaned food to the lady of each family house and she prepares it for her own family.
Vaí are the ones that scan the Sands of Maechalan for a potential place to live. They travel in groups of three to four and carry jugs of water, and baskets of food, mainly the dried skins of lizards. When they believe they have found a resting place they pray to Pagoro, the blind, God of intellect and reasoning, to allow them to be able to make a firm decision about whether they should use this spot again or not. They then place the lizard skins on the area in front of them, covering only the space right in front of their feet and then they return to their homes.
As stated before, the Prán, who are the six elders that have been given great
insight by the Airae, rule the Tiraelhon. The Prán live in one of the seven
cities and each Prán takes the name of their Airae before their actual name. As
of 1663 the Práns are Prán Nous Lestvá, Prán Icropio Jiviel, Prán Shyloma
Maela, Prán Nova Opri, Prán Damara Dyhist, and Prán Laecha Monrán. Except for
Prán Damara Dyhist, each Prán lives in the city named after their Airae. Prán
Damara Dyhist lives in the city of Maechen. The Prán decide everything for the
Tiraelhon, they receive messages from the Airae on how to best govern the
Under the Prán are the family houses. There are usually about 12 family houses in each village. The male head represents each house in a village. The male is the one who speaks with the Prán and presents the wishes and needs of his family. The Prán will then seek the council of the Airae and when they emerge they will have made a decision. Each Prán rules their own city and they do not usually come together to make decisions unless it is something that will affect the Tiraelhon as a whole.
The Prán have established a few rules, one of those states that if the Prán convicts a Tiraelhon of a crime they are either fined or declared an outlaw. If they are declared an outlaw they will have to live out in the Plain of the Dead for the remainder of their lives. The Prán have also established a law that says that there is no law against stealing from the enemy after they have stolen from you, as long as they are not of Tiraelhon blood and do not live within the Sands of Maechalan.
Women. The Tiraelhon often live in large family groups. Children, parents, and grandparents can often be found living together. When the eldest son takes over the family belongings, he becomes the head of the family and is responsible for the well being of them all. He has to speak with the Prán of his city in order to assign occupations to each family member and unless he is a Prán he too has to work. His wife, the lady of the household, has to see to it that the food lasts during the hot desert months. It is her duty to know how to cook and to share the receipts with her daughters and possibly even her sons. She is also expected to know about herbs for making medicines and to care for the sick and wounded. If the husband is a Féarir (farmer) then the wife also has the responsibility of caring for the hirafa, the small cow-like beast that inhabits southern Aeruillin.
Marriage. Girls are available for marriage at the age of 95. They are expected to know how to run a household at that time, should her husband fall ill. It is not unusual to see the older Tiraelhon, especially the Tirave come and help the young elf. The marriage is agreed upon between families and can often be regarded as an alliance between the families, although this is often a dismissed thought as most Tiraelhon are very close. If the daughter wants to marry a Tiraelhon that her parents have not chosen for her, it is possible that she may get that desire. She must present the male to her family and then he must prove to them that he is worthy of their daughter. Discussing his job, his family history, his future plans, his possessions, or how he loves the daughter is usually how this is done.
Divorce. The woman does not fully become a part of her husband’s family when she is married. She continues to be a part of her own family and if her husband mistreats her and her children, which is extremely rare, or if he is too lazy to be a good provider or if he insults her family, she can divorce him. To do that she must go to the Prán of her city, bringing her father, her husband, and his father. In front of these people she declares herself divorced from her husband. She must then go to her family tent and do the same and then go to his family tent.
The young children, if any, will stay with the mother after the divorce. The bigger children can be divided between the parents according to the wealth and status of the two families. If the former wife has her own property and a great inheritance she has a higher chance of gaining the children than her husband.
The same can be applied to males. If the male partner does not feel that the woman is not fulfilling her duties as a wife. Or if she is bringing shame to his family, he can go to the Prán of his city bringing his father, his wife and her father.
Production/Trade. The Tiraelhon trade with fabrics, and textiles with the Aeolrhan, and they trade weaponry and glasses, plus food and fresh water with the Sor'inyt. Since the Sor'inyt are only female the Tiraelhon will only send female elves to the Plain of the Dead, and to the Plain of Col’Paehjaar, never allowing the Sor'inyt to come into the Tiraelhon lands because they fear that they will kill all of their males.
Natural Resources. The Sands of Maechalan provide the Tiraelhon with a few needed resources. They receive water from the Sea of Tardulan and the Theranian Sea, they are not proficient fishers, but a few have been seen trying. They can find food, both plant and meat within the desert, although many of the plants add spice or sourness to a meal. They can find oils, glass, iron ore mines, copper mines, and a few salt mines near the Raquan Mountains to the northeast, near the coast of The Theranian Sea.
Religion. The Tiraelhon have 18 gods, each representing a different aspect of the world (see History for the creation of their gods). The Airae are the head gods of the Tiraelhon, they do not bicker as the lesser gods do and they do not speak to the Tiraelhon as the others do. The only ones that they speak to are the Prán. They are the base of the Tiraelhon religion and have such importance that without them the other gods would crumble and fight until their death as was shown in the Myth of Dark Days.
The Dietrae are very mortal, in that they are often overwhelmed by lust and other emotions. The Airae are an exception, they are not affected by any emotion other than compassion. The three most important Airae are Nous (Knowledge), Icropio (Chaos), and Shyloma (the Void). The others are Novai (Death), Laecha (Life), and Damara (Peace).
The Dietrae are Phemlu (Order), Pragoro (Reason), Arete (Consent), Fetra (Inspiration), Tipesto (Rebellion and Lust), Terira (Nature), Muerkon (Pain), Cerub (Betrayal), Maecha (Memory), Nemypeds (Innocence), Circinae (Light and Passion), Lilur, Sóirn, Syli (Forgiveness), Raqua (Darkness and Fear), Lalian (Scorn), Vevelorén (Hate), and the Sýsián Sisters (Truth).
All of the Dietrae are always drawn with long white hair, but the Airae, the higher class of gods, have hairstyles that vary.
Holidays, Festivals and Observances. There are three main Tiraelhon festivals:
Ae'llánámn ("Joyful Gathering")
This is the celebration where the Tiraelhon dance and sing to the Dietrae and thank them for allowing them to survive after all these years. This takes places three times a year, the 5th day of Smól'evathón (Month of the Molten Ice), Dál'injerá (Month of the Rising Sun) and Coór'pherán (Month of the Dead Tree). It takes place on the fifth day of these months because those are the days that the Tiraelhon believed that the Airae restored the Dietrae to power.
Amncínancianá ("Powerful Silence")
´This is a holiday where no Tiraelhon speaks for an entire day in honor of Circinae. This can also be a daily ritual for marriages that are stressed and need the Circinae to show her light. This comes on the 14th day of Méh'avashín (Month of the Changing Winds). If one is to speak on this day they will be cast out into the Plain of the Dead for a day and a half.
Claéhínól (oddly translated as "Peaceful Dagger")
This is the three-week festival that celebrates the joining of the Avánhon to the Tiraelhon, it lasts from the 12th of Chúh'querín (Month of the Fallen Leaf), to the 3rd of Salarí'herín (Month of the Passing Clouds). It lasts for that long because that is the amount of time that it took for all the Avánhon to relinquish their weapons and become a part of the Tiraelhon society.
The following historical details are all taken
from the "Book of Many
Paths", written by Prán Nous Levánári.
Before the birth of the Aeolrhan and the Tiraelhon, there was the Maeverhim tribe in Sarvonia. The Maeverhim split and a small group, now the Aeolrhan continued on past the Sharadon Forest and took a ship to Aeruillin. There reasons for doing so are clouded in rumors and history. Most of which have been forgotten. When they arrived in the city of Shan'Furionnis, they began to forget the High Goddess and the Twelve Gods, and began to worship fae gods, but a small group kept that faith alive. They became what is now known as the Tiraelhon.
Due to the strict and angry voices of the Aeolrhan, the man named Tirae gathered his family, and friends and moved south to find their own religious freedom. They were little in number but their faith in Avá kept them going strong. When they had spent forty-nine years in the Plain of Col'Paehjaar, they began to feel forsaken and forgotten by Avá. They were pursued by the Sor'inyt because they had invaded their lands, and they were running short on food and water. They felt as though Avá had abandoned them because they were becoming ill and many were dying.
When they reached the Sands of Maechalan, they stopped and began to weep. The Sands were a barren place and it did not approve to the tastes of the former Aeolrhan. By now these elves had grown in number and had darker skin tones and their appearance had slightly changed. Tirae's wife, Malan, threw down her bags and prayed to anyone that would hear her cry.
The loving arms of the Dietrae Pragoro answered her cry, he told them that the Sands of Maechalan were their promised homes and that this is where they belonged. Later that day it rained over the Sands for seven days straight, during that time the elves, now called the Tiraelhon, had been supposedly visited by 18 beings, each claiming to be a god and 16 of the gods blessed them with a plant, an animal, a resource, a water source, or an idea for a creation. The Tiraelhon rejoiced and danced for seven days after the rain.
Information provided by Lady Tiaa