Stone-born (Escarnum)

This is a variant of the deep elf race created by Talen Lee for his setting, Cobrin'Seil.

Despite their long years underground and their yearning for revenge against the surface elves, the dark elves never found themselves suited to physical warfare. Instead choosing to concentrate on their magical skills, they used sorcery to combine the traits of desirable creatures, breeding themselves a powerful, obedient slave race to serve as tools of war. These were the stone-born, the rank-and-file of the deep elves' army, a foot-soldier perfectly suited to wage war in the depths.

Personality

Stone-born are stern, darkly solemn creatures with little room in their lives for excessive emotions. Created like puppets and kept like livestock - a group of stone-born is referred to in deep elf parlance as a stable - they live and die as soldiers in the caverns below Taido, a world devoid of leisure or comfort.

Physical Description

Though they were originally bred from elven stock, stone-born now bear little resemblance to their makers, the deep elves, aside from pointed ears and fine facial features. They are tall and athletically built - much more muscular and broad than their elven kin - and have skin of dark, earthen-hues such as brown and grey, and sometimes greyish blues or greens. Their eyes are typically a deep red, though some also have tones of brown or purple, and their hair is typically black or grey, sometimes with streaks of stronger colour.

Male and female stone-born are all but identical; due to being reproduced via magical technique, rather than by traditional methods, gender has no place amongst stone-born. They dress in a uniform, practical fashion, preferring light armour which provides protection while still allowing mobility.

Relations

Stone-born have no known relations with any races other than the dark elves, by whom they are kept as slaves.

Alignment

By virtue of their breeding, and many years of being conditioned to follow orders without personal concern, stone-born tend strongly toward lawful alignments. Almost all of them also follow the evil tendencies of their masters.

Language

Stone-born speak the same language as their masters, though the majority of them are not permitted to learn how to read or write. Some, who serve specific purposes in the army's ranks, are given such an education; however, such roles are usually held by unfortunate deep elves who have lost their political influence, and thus literate stone-born are exceedingly rare.

Names

As with deep elves, stone elf names sound much the same as common elf names to those who are unfamiliar with the language. However, they are not drawn from the repeating "pool" of names used by the surface elves, rather being words from common parlance. They usually have derogative meanings like "dog", "weapon" or "tool".

Adventurers

Like deep elves, there has never been record of a stone elf managing to escape the caverns below Taido - given that they are imprisoned not only by the surface elves but also by their masters, they are even less likely to appear than the deep elves.

Game Rule Information

Stone-born Racial Traits

Stone-born have the same racial traits as common elves, except as noted below.

  • +2 Dexterity, -2 Intelligence. Stone-born are hardier than their cousins and just as nimble, but as creatures bred for warfare, they were conditioned to think as little as possible outside of a battlefield. These replace the ability score adjustments of the common elf.
  • Racial Skills: A stone-born receives a +4 racial bonus on stealth and perception checks when in caves or caverns.
  • Darkvision: Stone-born can see in the dark up to 120 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight, and stone-born can function just fine with no light at all.
  • Light Sensitivity: A stone-born is treated as dazzled as long as she is in bright light, such as sunlight or a daylight spell. Abrupt exposure to such light renders her blinded for 1 round. Stone-born were not bred for the bright sunlight of the surface world.
  • Battle-Ready: A stone-born receives a +4 racial bonus to initiative. Stone-born are used to moving first in battle.
  • Weapon Proficiencies: A stone-born is automatically proficient with the Light Blades and Heavy Blades weapon groups. Stone-born are not given the same exotic training as their masters, but as created soldiers, they are always familiar with the most basic tools of war.
  • Illiteracy: As stone-born are rarely permitted to create written documents, a stone-born begins play unable to read or write. A stone-born cannot remove this illiteracy by gaining class levels, but she may spend 2 skill points to gain the ability to read and write all languages she is able to speak.
  • Languages: Elven and Underling. Stone-born may learn Shuwa-tou as a bonus language. This trait replaces the common elf's languages.
  • Favoured Class: Fighter. The stone-born were created as tools of war, and military training is all but impossible to escape.

Partial Open Gaming Content: Content in highlighted boxes is derived from, and in turn designated as, OGL material. Other content in this article is copyright © {$owner} {$year} unless otherwise noted. Stone-born are derived from the Cobrin'Seil Deep Elf, © Talen Lee 2005-2008.

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