Sunday, 9 January 2011

The Cannibal Elves of Byrkije

In the deep, fecund pine forests of Byrkije live a race of elves known to the surrounding peoples as the Feeders. Graceful, beautiful and strong, and possessing magical and eldricht knowledge beyond the ken of other peoples, they consider themselves superior in all respects. To them, humans are but another prey species as worthy as a fish or deer, fit only for butchering and consumption. The raw, succulent flesh of human children is especially prized, particularly if it is freshly killed; this meat is thinly sliced, sashimi-like, and the blood sucked from it with great delight. The best carvers attract visitors from leagues around, and often arrange special meat-hunting raids from the dark Byrkije forests into human lands.

The elves of Byrkije worship their ancestors, who inhabit the forest even after death. These pale, ethereal elf ghosts are strongest on cold winter days when the sun barely floats beyond the horizon; at such times they throng the dark, misty hollows deep within the woods. Though incapable of interacting with the world of the living in any physical sense, they are quick to alert their brethren to the presence of prey. Wanderers who find themselves lost in Byrkije often find themselves surrounding by these ghosts, who howl and shriek like gargoyles to direct their descendants to the location of the kill. Many a poor woodsman or lost child has died with the cries of the elf ghosts still echoing through the trees about him.

Elf of Byrkije

Very thin, tall and pale, but possessing a horrid strength, an elf of Bykije is an unforgettable sight. Their eyes are the lightest blue like the colour of a glacier; their hair is white; their teeth are fanged. During the hunt they sing mournful-sounding ditties to draw out the terror of their prey.

Elves of Byrkije hunting groups typically contain D3 wokani, who they call sorcerers. Their level is typically W4.

Armour Class: 4
Hit Dice: 4
Move: 120'
Attacks: 1 weapon (usually spear, sword, or axe)
Damage: As weapon, +2
No. App: Hunting group of 6-24 (6d4)
Save As: F4
Morale: 12
Treasure: V
Intelligence: 14
Alignment: Chaotic
XP: 75
Type: Humanoid, Uncommon

Ancestral Elf Ghost of Byrkije

These white, near-translucent shades are completely ethereal and cannot interact with the physical world - though they can be destroyed by magical or cold iron weapons. On encountering a human or other sentient race they let up a loud, piercing shriek, which has a 10% chance per turn of raising the attention of a nearby hunting band. They will give chase until their prey are dead or have managed to escape Byrkije.

Armour Class: 5
Hit Dice: 4*
Move: 120'
Attacks: None
Damage: None
No. App: 3-18
Save As: F4
Morale: N/A
Treasure: None
Intelligence: 14
Alignment: Chaotic
XP: 125
Type: Undead, uncommon


  1. Excellent post. Evocative image and interesting concept. I've been considering an arctic/tiaga sojourn for my players and I'm going to lift this. The majority of elves in my world have verged on comic relief--a bunch of new agey, pacifist hippies. How different from their northern kin!

  2. Great write up of an interesting people!

  3. Unless they are eating on another, not really cannibals. I eat pork. That just makes me a carnivore, not a cannibal; despite the close connection between swine and humans.

  4. Forgot to say, it's a great, creepy idea.

    I'm just having one of those days that brings out the pedant in me.

  5. I knew as soon as I'd made the post that somebody would say that. Should read "man-eating elves" or some such, I know.

  6. So you're saying you knew better, but did it anyway?

    My mom would have grounded you for a month...

    Man eating elves sounds like a new article about the infamous Keebler incident.

  7. Elves are demi-humans,so a case could be made for the proper use of 'cannibal'.

    Anyway, everybody knows that elves are bastards. this just confirms it.

  8. Are they a race you can use for your character?

  9. This will make Half-Elves even more conflicted.

  10. Dwarf: "Stop chewing your arm!"
    Half Elf: "But I'm so delicious!"

    Were these inspired by the Dwarf Fortress elves?