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Elven Heritage,
By: Eros Rex Emperor of Elves

There is an elf and there is an Elv, not many know this because to mortals we look the same. While the word elf pre-dates elv in evolutionary patterns. An elv is considered to be more advanced and progressive. They are the surviving race of Elves that can trace their ancestry back to Elves of noble birth that ruled the realms long ago in Sosaria. An elv is an elf that has actually been verified and then transformed into an elv of ELSe.
A shela is a female elv of noble birth. Elfs know nothing of shelas but Elves do, elfs know nothing of the joining nor the gathering but Elves do, elfs know nothing of transformation but Elves do and finally, Elves being of noble birth hold themsELVes to a higher standard of honor and role play. An elv knows these words: "We are thee Elves of ELSe, Noble Lords of Sosaria!"

Elves also find it very easy to trace their roots. Most pure Elves only have one name this is how they recognize each other as belonging to a certain family. This has been found to be true weather the elv is of Drow, Wood, or High Elv origin. It should be noted that elves are not very prejudicial when it comes to mixing with other intelligent races (there are known exceptions to this rule. No elv would ever willingly lay with any Spider or Snake, for they have done great harm to our race. Orcs are not considered advanced enough to mingle with.).
What is known is that The Elves love their own kind and that even Elves of mixed heritage may enjoy this closeness and even be taught to communicate telepathically with their full elven brothers. Half Elves are not considered to be lesser in standing then their full-blooded relatives. Indeed unlike Mortals Elves feel that to have ANY elven blood at all is to be blessed and to be accepted by all other elves.
Another common misunderstanding is that to be Half Elv is to be part mortal! This is not always the case. There are many humanoid races that the Elves associate with which mortals may not be aware. It has even been rumored that Elves are one of only 4 humanoid type races that have a genetic coding strong enough to allow them to sire children by actual Gods or even bond with certain energy type beings! These types of beings are known as half elves. Half Elves normally have 2 names one name to honor their elven heritage the other to honor the other race from which they come.
A well-known example would be the story of Rex, a full-blooded elv and son of Rexus the king. Rex as a lad was exposed to the power of entering a Sun-gate at the same time the Olympian deity Eros sought to pass through it. The two life forces were merged in Sosaria bound together creating the half elv Eros Rex. Because of this for the first time a half elv sits on the elven throne as emperor of all ELSe. This time as been foretold and this time, is the time of Legend....

Elven Night of Joining:
To speak of The Joining is to speak of elves and shelas(female elv) and how Elves see each other. All Elves know that Women are superior to men, the fact that men are allowed to lead in most cases is testament to that fact. "Elves are expendable but Shelas are invaluable!" This ancient elven saying can often be heard and is even part of the most popular Joining Vows. The fact is that Elves do consider the sexes to be almost equal but all know that without shelas the race would not exist for very long! It is also a fact that shelas are very rare (it is not uncommon to find an elven household with all elves born to it, but a house with even one or two shelas in it is rare indeed). For these reasons as well as the fact that it is said that all things good are born of women! (It is customary for all elves to Bow when a shela appears.)
Elven marriages are a cause for great celebration, For when a Shela chooses to take a mate it is a rare and good thing! For in Elven tradition it is the shela whom selects her elv. Lasses are taught even before their first recall that they are Princesses in the kingdom, and that they must be careful to insure that they pick only the best among Princes for the Night of Joining. Should a Shela show interest in an Elv only then may he be allowed to court her. During the courting should a Shela accept a gem as a gift from her Favored (Favored is the elven equivalent to the term boyfriend, Intended is used in place of Fiancee). Then the time of joining will be determined to be near. The Joining has 4 phases, to honor the 4 known elements:

The First Rite is that of Air:
The Intended of the shela must now prove to her that he is the Elv that can make her dreams come true. He must pick 4 friends to help him; this is called a Gathering. The Elv, his Gathering and his shela will go adventure together. For the term of this adventure all kills that the Shela wishes she may have, and all treasure will be gathered for her by the Gathering. It is then given to the shela, to show her the worth of her Intended. With this done the Lady Elv must then proclaim her happiness and wish to be joined.

The Rite of Water:
The shela must send her Intended away to adventure with his gathering or other friends. During this time she will seek out an object that she knows her Intended wishes to have. It is up to her what item she will get and it must be kept secret from him until the night of Joining. She may enlist the help of her sister shelas or mortal females who are helos (friends to her) or do so alone, but she may ask the help of NO male elv in doing this. If it is known that she has no sisters to help her in this Right then it is the Duty of all available Royals to offer her their assistance (unless the Royal is a member of the Gathering, then this duty falls to the advisors). This Gift will be given on the Eve of the rite of Fire, before all gathered friends.

The Rite of Earth:
This is the time of the actual Joining of two souls that will for a time blend as one. It is said that while the Rite of water is being done the male Elv is entertaining his Gathering and doing all that he can to please them. For during the Right of Earth it is the Gathering that puts together the feast at the place of Joining for the couple to be. (In the Old traditions the gathering also selected the place of Joining for the couple, but in the more modern tradition the shela now selects the place. There is a legend and reason behind this, but it is up to the couple weather they seek a traditional or a modern Joining. Either way it is considered unheard of to allow the male to choose the place of Joining. During this time helos (elves, mortal and others) are invited to see the couple bond and become as one. This day starts off very formal with all wearing formal attire. Shelas wear a royal Blue Gown of Joining to represent the purity of the sky above the head of all Elves. Elves wear armor or cloth of Golden Brown to represent the virility of the earth beneath the feet of all Elves. The culmination of this ceremony is at the end of the vows the 2 step into a gate together and come out at the same time (the gate will take them to the front of the joining hall, so that all may witness them enter and exit as one.) The Right of fire begins immediately after the ceremony, and goes on until they log.

The Right of Fire:
It is the Festival of Fire! Everyone to celebrate casts fire spells as the Bride becomes Queen for a night! The Elves are hers to rule and she is adored by all as the most beautiful and fairest of women (the bride is known to change her clothes and hair color as often as she wishes that night, so that each time she appears even more radiant then the last)! It is because of this that it is never considered rude for the Elv and his bride to leave the party unannounced to continue their night of passion... The rite of fire continues until all guests have left. The Gathering then cleans up and retires to a pub to mourn the loss of their brother and to celebrate his rebirth!

The Parting Paths:
Should a shela refuse the gemz of Joining but is still interested in her Elv, she may then give him a gem. The gem given should be in direct correspondence to her feelings for the Elv in question (for example: Ruby would equal a Deep affection a Diamond would equal true love). If She is no longer interested then the gemz of friendship must be given and accepted. Elves are free spirits and unlike mortals only bond for as long as BOTH parties wish to remain together, should one elv long to be free then the gemz of friendship must be offered as a sign of trusted friends that will forever remain so. The Elves value the Freedom to do as they please above all things and the sharing of this freedom is the greatest gift to be shared with another, but make no mistake it can only be shared and never taken. If because of a parting (a parting is the Elven term for divorce) one party feels wronged or hurt they have the right to summon a gathering. The Gathering is a group of Elves that come together only in times of great Joy or great Sorrow. It is the duty of the Gathering to remind the Elv harmed of the joy of being an Elv and the Joy of freedom. For the term of one adventure The Gathering will do the bidding of the elv in pain. Weather the Elv wishes to go into the depths of the deepest dungeon or to a Tavern to impress the locals of his powers and abilities or be it simply to have a group of friends to listen The Gathering will be there.

It has been written let it be so,
Eros Rex Elven Emperor