|Common Nicknames||Wind Elves|
|Distinctions||Short Nelfin with childlike features|
|Maximum Age||500 years|
|Height||5'5 - 6'2|
|Weight||80 - 160 lbs|
|Eye Colors||Green or blue|
|Hair Colors||Light brown, Caramel, Chestnut brown, Blonde, Dirty blonde|
|Skin Tones||Tan and flushed|
Cielothar as a name refers to the more agrarian Nelfin who are also commonly called the Wind Elves. This nickname comes from the fact that central to all of their settlements stands a massive windmill that doubles as their main granary as well as their social gathering center. The Cielothar are often seen as the antithesis of the Altalar, believing in a tranquil existence in worship and respect of the forest, in harmony with nature and the land and at peace with the wildlife of the world. The Cielothar have returned to a much simpler agrarian existence, rejecting the urban and decadent lifestyle of the Altalar Elves and all war-like behaviors associated with it. Ironically enough this always causes the Cielothar to be seen as the victim Elves, their strong adherence to pacifism making them soft targets for Orc raiders or Human bandits. The Cielothar are often seen as infantile and naive by the other Nelfin denominations, they are exceptionally skilled when dealing with animals and taking care of their needs.
- 1 Physical Characteristics
- 2 Mental Characteristics
- 3 History
- 4 Society
- 4.1 Politics
- 4.2 Culture
- 4.3 Religion
- 4.3.1 All-Mother
- 4.3.2 Inner Court Pantheon
- 4.3.3 Outer Court Pantheon
- 4.4 Combat and Warfare
- 4.5 Economy and Technology
- 5 Trivia
Cielothar are, among the Nelfin races, the smallest and by far the weakest. With a height range of 5'5 at shortest and 6’2 at tallest, the Cielothar stand as the shortest of all Nelfin, though their features are far softer than any other. Cielothar facial features are characterised by small oval-shaped eyebrows, large eyes, and large lips that provide them with an almost child-like appearance; this remains even through adulthood, where adult Cielothar are sometimes mistaken for teenage Altalar. Cielothar are slender and lithe, even for a race of Nelfin, but are classically humanoid in most other ways. Similar to their Altalar forebears, dimorphism between the two genders in the Cielothar is subtle, with a general youthful and effeminate appearance occuring through all Cielothar, male or female. Unlike the Altalar, however, Cielothar are far more susceptible to disease and deformity. Thi is theorised by some to be the result of inadequate diet or early exposure to disease factors. Cielothar are universally tanned, some as dark as the tone of a Daendroque Ailor, and tend to have brown or caramel-colored hair, though instances of blonde among the Cielothar have been reported. Cielothar eye colors are uniformly green or blue.
Cielothar are rarely seen without some form of decoration or bodily modification; they have the longest ears of any Nelfin subrace and take great pleasure in decorating them with copper, silver, and gemstones, with some even having precious gems stone-sung into their ears or faces. Most Cielothar bear some form of green tattooing above their eyebrows and on their foreheads, usually in patterns similar to tree branches and leaves, bushes, or vines, though some choose to have the swirling silver tattoos in their Ritualism applied over the typical green ones.
Cielothar are the longest-lived of all Nelfin races, reaching a maximum age of 500 years, but their aging departs from that of the other races once they surpass the maximum ages of the others. Before this point and up until the age of 320, Cielothar age practically identically to Altalar. While an Altalar will begin to age again over the next 80 years, Cielothar retain their youth up until the age of 400. After 400, a Cielothar’s aging will increase rapidly; over the next few decades, the Cielothar will develop stark white hair, and will seem to shrivel and wrinkle almost excessively. Their physical competence decreases, and by the last decade of their life, the Cielothar is essentially bedridden. In spite of this, Cielothar who manage to reach such an advanced age are highly valued among Cielothar communities for their vast knowledge and life experience over five centuries. Portraying a Cielothar older than 150 requires a special permission application. See Permissions for more information.
Cielothar are widely perceived to be the ‘victim Elves’, and their common traits do little to dissuade this point of view. Cielothar almost unanimously have a very strong moral compass guiding them in their lives, and a powerful tendency towards acts of compassion, mercy, and pacifism. These tendencies stem from the ghosts of the beliefs of the old Cult of Ciellonia; the attitudes and activities of the Allorn Empire upper classes were the very thing which led to the Allorn Empire’s demise. Resultantly, nearly all Cielothar actively avoid the debauchery, self-justification, and arrogance that once defined the princes and princesses of the Allorn Empire, as if the very acts are revolting to them. Cielothar are by definition skittish around strangers, but are far from slow to befriend, and can often be some of the closest and most reliable friends available. To those they know and trust well, Cielothar are excellent drinking companions and entertainers, freely engaging in poetry, literature, singing, and the caretaking of animals. Most Cielothar keep some kind of companion animal, largely just to have company around; the centuries of symbiosis with Avanthar has resulted in a certain affinity and almost need for social contact, which is usually fulfilled by their companion animal, or simply by staying near their friends as much as possible. This symbiosis with the Avanthar has also given the Cielothar a peculiar definition of ‘pacifism’, in that while Cielothar themselves utterly abhor engaging in acts of violence, they have few qualms in assisting those close to them who may engage in violence, usually by providing them with the boons of Cielothar Ritualism or with medical attention after the violence has passed.
Cielothar Ritualism isn’t strictly a physical ability, but because most of the effects are physical, the information is provided in this section. Cielothar Ritualism is a number of practices Cielothar are natively able to do when they understand Olt’vven, the ritualistic language used in a variety of traditions. Cielothar Ritualism is a unique Proficiency that only Cielothar can invest points into, able to perform a number of rituals unlocked at each set of Proficiency Points invested (though Kathar Ritualism Points for Lightburned Kathar are converted to Cielothar Ritualism, and they are the only non-Cielothar who can use this skill). The progression goes as followed:
- 6 Points Invested: The character can read/write/recite Olt’vven, the Cielothar ritualistic Estel language. This language is not an actual language that can be used to converse, but a collection of phrases and expressions without a clear distinction of nouns and verbs to form actual conversations with. Essentially, while the speaker understands what the phrase roughly does, they don’t know what the actual syllables create or where each word starts or ends. While knowing Olt’vven, the character can draw up ritual citations in Estel Script, as well as tattoo others with Estel Script preachings. If at any point they had Void Script tattoos, all the symbols change to Estel Script symbols when they become lightburned or converted back to non-Kathar.
- 12 Points Invested: The character can use stone-singing to fuse precious gems and crystals with the bodies of others (or themselves) as well as swirls of luminescent silver tattoos. These precious gems are painlessly merged with the body on whatever location they choose, and they can also re-shape these gems and crystals into whatever shape they like (respecting the original quantity of the substance though, not expanding or shrinking it). These gems when set do not cause someone to have more protective skin, it does not grant any combat advantages, the grafting is purely aesthetic.
- 18 Points Invested: The character can use an Olt'vven ritual to trans-morph themselves into either a domestic dog or cat. This morph remains for as long as the Cielothar wants, or until they are struck or attacked in some manner. While in this animal form, they can still speak their humanoid language, and cannot communicate with other real animals like their type would. Additionally, their eyes are a glowing solid white-blue light.
- 24 Points Invested: The character can use Light Singing in Olt’vven to create armor out of light. A Light Sung Armor is usually a chest piece, set of shoulder pauldrons or arm guards, which then hardens into a silver-blue shining armor, with the durability of Steel. These armor can be wielded by anyone (and must be cast onto their body). This armor lasts for up to an hour (or until the wielder passes out). While wearing this armor without being attacked does not cost anything, each hit absorbed by the armor causes wear and fatigue on the wearer (essentially blocking hits at the cost of stamina). After three successful hits striking the armor, the armor fades away and the wielder almost buckles from exhaustion.
- 30 Points Invested: The character doesn’t need to wait for an Arken or Void or Exist Herald to appear, and can directly communicate with an Arken through the burning of Olt’vven ritual papers drawn up from the blood of a Silven. These messages are guaranteed to be heard, and will most of the times receive a response. Furthermore, the ritualist may also perform the Estel Cleansing ritual as described on the Demonic Possession page to turn Altalar, Avanthar and Isldar who were turned into Kathar back into their natural state and clear their mind of any Kathar world-view controls.
The birth of the Cielothar, unlike the Kathar or Sihndar, is difficult to define. Owing in part to the argumentation over what defines a Cielothar, either as the first generation of Nelfin similar to their present day form, or as the earliest members of the Cult of Ciellonia, historians have never come to a solid conclusion as to what constitutes the emergence of the first true Cielothar. However, all agree that the events that led to the formation of the contemporary Cielothar population began during what the Altalar would label their Grandening period, between 1100 BC and 1000 BC. Over this century, the Cult of Ciellonia formed as a resistance to the political machinations of the upper castes of Altalar society, proscribing the espionage, intrigue, and insular policies that defined them. This initial Cult, one of five that formed during the Grandening, was composed almost entirely of the lower classes and labor groups of Allorn society, whose day-to-day lives were focused on surviving and making do instead of engaging in political activism. Thanks to this, however, the initial impact of the Cult of Ciellonia on the Allorn Empire was negligible, if there was at all an impact to begin with.
The next five centuries of the existence of the Cult of Ciellonia were to be quiet, but not unfruitful; with the lower classes of the Est’Allorn disregarded by the ruling political caste and the increasingly influential Archmages, the Cult enjoyed an unhindered growth, slowly amassing a considerable population of like-minded Altalar, whose stance on violence became increasingly more hardline, until pacifism almost became the motto of their Cult. This growth was not to last; starting in 450 BC and ending in 250 BC, the Mage Wars raged, tearing apart the Allorn Empire, crippling its internal structures and external image. While the four Shadow and Void Cults formed, the upper class opinion of the Cult of Ciellonia rose from a barely-known contingent of harmless farmers, to a dangerous and ever-growing legion of peasantry who threatened to undermine the warring regional lords. Even if this was not the truth, the Cult still presented the very real possibility that the ways of the upper crust were harmful to the world, and that their destructive treatment of not only the environment, but also of Estel herself, could have dire consequences. In response to the aggressive treatment of known Ciellonia members, the Cult abandoned the worship of Talea Sunvidal and fell back to the worship of the eight known Pantheon gods, beginning their true departure from the Allorn Empire as a whole.
The Cult watched on as the Kathar rose, and the ensuing Fracture of Allorn occurred, marked by the secession of many Cults from mainstream Altalar society, beginning with the departure of the Dregodarian sects, both of whom would become Isldar and Voltalar, moving northwards, even as far as Ellador for some. Thanks to the fervently low-class standing of the Cult of Ciellonia, however, they were spared the prying fingers of the Daughters of Chaos and the Sons of Malice, who instead focused on the leading courts and principalities of the Allorn Empire. The Ciellonians witnessed the fall of noble conservatism and chastity to the total debauchery that came with Chaos and Malice, and bore the brunt of the consequences of that fall; while the nobility succumbed to carnal desire and gluttony, the systems and hierarchies within the Allorn principalities crumbled, striking those on the lowest rung of society the hardest. Here, the Cult of Ciellonia began its plans to secede from the Empire, much like the Dregodarians had years before, and by coincidence, their decision was matched by the appearance of the Yanar.
Unlike with the other Altalar, the Yanar found open arms and warmth with members of the Cult of Ciellonia in the years preceding the Cataclysm. Heeding their warnings of oncoming destruction, the Cult sent its weakest members away with the Yanar, in the hopes that once Estel’s warning had come to pass, they could seek them out, and reform their society with a new visage, and a new goal. Here, the Yanar assisted in leading the chosen Ciellonia into what few forests remained on Daen, to hold out against the oncoming events. They began to construct small towns and colonies, in which to reside while the rest of the Ciellonia Cultists finally began to take up a more vocal role in the tattered remnants of the once-great Allorn Empire. While the voice of the Ciellonia became heard, the Yanar developed a strong bond with those they had taken with them to hide. This bond would cement itself in the events to come, eventually defining what would become the Cielothar, while they waited for the rest of the members of their Cult to find them. They never would.
While the direct precursors to the Cielothar slowly defined their way of life, a Void Invasion raged on. The sky tore open above Drowda, from which poured Arken and demons abound. The Daughters of Malice and Sons of Chaos slaughtered officials by the dozen, and the Allorn Empress was massacred alongside her army on the battlefield, a force unmatched in size neither before her, nor after. All the while, the first born Cielothar came into being. A limited diet stunted their growth, and the necessity of agriculture and farming, taught to them by the Yanar, darkened their skin to a deep tan. The Cielothar and remaining Ciellonian cultists were among the only peoples spared by Estel’s Wildering. While the Allorn were engulfed by bush and branch, the Cielothar were met with fertile soil and bountiful harvests, enough to fuel their growth and colonisation efforts to sustain themselves after the news of the nigh-irreparable damage done to the Empire they had once been part of had arrived.
Even being spared the Wildering, the luck of the Cielothar continued, in an era that lasted roughly from 10 AC to 280 AC, labelled by some Cielothar as the Fortunate Period. They bore witness to vast war parties of Orcish invaders, who simply left the fledgeling Cielothar be; they were small and defenseless, and existed only to farm. There was to be no honor in raiding any settlement founded by the Cielothar. Instead, the Orcs were to target the Altalar and ravage them, before turning their eyes to final settlement, and even to the Avanthar. The Avanthar themselves had already begun their eugenics campaigns, brutish by the standards of the Altalar, but stronger now, enough to develop a bond of protection with the Cielothar, whose capacities for combat of any time had long since faded. The Cielothar had similarly avoided the slave revolts of Daenshore and Kilarallis by simply never having taken slaves to begin with; their lower class predecessors had neither reason nor wealth enough to keep slaves. In this, the Cielothar developed a certain sense of naivety. The more religious among them proclaimed that their abandonment of Talea, and the changing of their ways, had led Estel and her Pantheon to reward them for their piety and repentance, though the survivors of the Wildering and the conflicts within Allorn territories were less sure of this. Despite this, they were already advanced in age, and would not last long enough to disseminate their views; the wariness and opposition to self-serving politics that had once characterised the Cult of Ciellonia had been replaced with overt trust and ignorance of any meaningful level of government among the Cielothar, and the few remaining Ciellonia Cultists were agonizingly aware of this.
Their Fortunate Period birthed numerous practices that the Cielothar are known chiefly for today; the first Forest Wall was erected in around 20 AC, composed of wooden poles carved with intricate floral patterns and banners, and would become the standard for any developed Cielothar colony. The massive telltale windmills of a Cielothar settlement would appear soon after, similarly decorated with paint and banner and plants. The reverence of the Yanar and the forest beyond their Forest Walls began initially as a practice of hardline Faith of Estel followers, but eventually spread to the population at large. These same hardline followers of Estel developed Cielothar Ritualism and Olt’vven, or Estel Script, as well as all effects of the usage of Cielothar Ritualism. The symbiotic relationship between Yanar, Cielothar, and Avanthar also formed; the Yanar offered fruits and medicinal herbs to the Cielothar, who in turn offered grain and wheat for food to the Yanar, while the Avanthar protected the Cielothar from Kathar attackers and roaming Orcish war parties in return for clothing and medical attention when necessary. Cielothar cooperation and bonding with the Avanthar also led to the development of Plains Elven, a language descended from Modern Altalar, but influenced far more by dialect and fast speech; to a Modern Altalar speaker, Plains Elven may sound like a dialect of Modern Altalar, but slurred by a heavy accent and slang, resulting in a familiar but unintelligible tongue.
The past twenty years, however, have marked the end of the Cielothar Fortunate Period. Altalar emissaries harass Cielothar settlements, urging them to return to the Empire at large; Kathar agents exploit Cielothar kindness and naivety to gain a greater access to the forests and Yanar in attempts to spread Dulofall; and Ailor logging companies slowly intrude upon their sacred woods, ignoring their significance in favor of cheap profit from plentiful sources. The Cielothar themselves have done little in the way of dissuading this, relying on the Avanthar and Altalar Rangers to assist, which has in itself only resulted in far more conflict than it may ever have been worth, as shown by the 295 AC Ranger Crisis, when lumber companies were harassed by Avanthar raiding parties in efforts to scare them away. These events have only exacerbated the precarious balance required for Cielothar society to exist, and its reliance on defense from others to maintain itself, yet their propensity for extreme luck in dire situations remains, with the Cielothar being largely spared of the Bone Horror Crisis, thanks to the general low population densities of their settlements.
Cielothar society is often seen as the peaceful middle ground between the people of Aloria and the nature around them. They close the gap between the Avanthar and the Yanar, often act as Altalar emissaries to Humans (as they are more in tune with playing a less arrogant role) and are often hired as animal doctors due to their exceptional senses to an animal’s well being. Cielothar societies are however always intentionally kept small to minimize the impact they have on the environment around them. Every so often when a population grows too large, a caravan of sorts escorted by Avanthar is brought to a new location. It is generally assumed by scholars that the Cielothar will actually eventually outnumber all Elven subraces purely because they pollinate their societies much faster and have the largest quantity of peacefully operating colonies.
CIelothar politics is always rather in flux purely because it is never actually vested with a single important individual, but gradually slides around a few key members of Cielothar society. The most important members of Cielothar society are the Healing Elder, an expert healer, the Priest, the man or woman in charge of the rituals at the Forest Wall, or the Great Mother, a midwife of sorts who is involved with the birth of all Cielothar one way or another. Whichever is more needed in the present situation is given the most authority. For example, the Great Mother will dictate clan policy if they are direly in need of more population, or the Priest will rule when religious services are desired. Sometimes the three heads work in unison, though absolute authority by one of the three is rare to begin with. Cielothar are often just content to live a very anarchic yet peaceful existence where they simply engage in self-sustenance and then provide for others around them as a secondary objective.
Cielothar culture is often described as colorful and playful. This is especially visible in their clothing, vibrant colors with beads and bells attached to make as much noise as possible when they move around. Cielothar often adorn their ears with beads and rings of copper, crafting necklaces and arm bracers as well which they often trade with the Avanthar. The Cielothar often have a strong relation with a particular animal that follows them around or that they care for. Within the Cielothar towns it is often a goat or a dog, while city dwelling Cielothar often choose a bird or rodent of sorts. Many Cielothar holidays involve “painting” the animal with a variety of colored chalk and jewelry and engaging in some sort of praising parade through whatever street many Cielothar have settled in as a means of saying thanks for the friendship given by these animals. Cielothar will often treat these animals as life companions and become distressed when they become ill or pass away. Still, Cielothar always seek happy thoughts in life and will quickly replace a lost animal. In many ways this also expresses the life views of the Cielothar, they would often simply prefer to pick instant gratification to avoid having to ponder too long over morbid or sad situations. Cielothar family life is also very fluid, where members are sometimes intentionally or arbitrarily adopted or swapped around to supplement their own happiness. Cielothar are also notoriously forgiving and welcome of outsider Elves being adopted into their own family units. It would not be uncommon for a full blood Talar baby reject to be found among Cielothar parents who simply adopted it as their own.
Among the Cielothar, the Faith of Estel is widely followed. The Cielothar share the core tenets of their faith with the Altalar, in that they acknowledge and worship the existence of Estel and her Pantheon, but have unanimously abandoned Talea, the ninth unofficial member of the Pantheon in the Altalar form of the Faith of Estel. Instead, the Cielothar place a much greater emphasis on the worship of Estel herself, and her influence on the world surrounding her. As well as this, the Cielothar worship the Pantheon in ways far different to the methods used by the Altalar, though the Modern Altalar names used by the Altalar are still retained. Cielothar faith is deeply personal, but is still often curated and guided by a priest or priestess.
The Cielothar see Estel as the paramount of her Pantheon, and the one to whom they should give their thanks the most. Estel is characterised as a tall, beautiful blonde Altalar woman, clad in flowing white fabrics. They wholeheartedly believe Estel to be the divine creator of Aloria and all the dwells in it, and place most of their faith in here. While each Pantheon god covers a specific act or occurrence, the Cielothar believe Estel covers practically everything outside of that, as well as providing the Pantheon with their divine powers, and the Cielothar with their Ritualism. Cielothar attribute the Wildering and its events to the refusal of the Altalar to repent and return to nature, and view themselves as a form of Estel’s chosen, given their universal ability to tap into Cielothar Ritualism should they want to, which the Altalar are excluded from.
Inner Court Pantheon
Ulley, the Protector
Among the Cielothar, Ulley is the Protector, depicted as a tall and handsome dark-haired Avanthar. He dresses in typical Avanthar garb, and is usually shown on the back of an unsaddled pure white stallion. The Protector is called upon when the worshiper faces threat of any kind, including physical or emotional, as well as any form of challenge in life. The Cielothar believe the Avanthar were brought by Ulley to their defense, and so is given the form of one to represent this. Prayer to the Protector is performed by running a horsehair brush through the full length one’s own hair once, to pay tribute to Ulley’s steed, then uttering their prayer to Ulley quietly. The vocal prayer to Ulley is often uttered by Cielothar when applying Light Sung Armor with Cielothar Ritualism.
Ellea, the Transformer
Ellea is the Transformer, and is depicted as a nude, white-haired Yanar with a feminine form, who floats above the ground. Ellea is called upon when any large-scale change occurs in the worshiper’s life. Unlike the Altalar, the Cielothar believe Ellea’s ever-changing nature is not in fact negative, but her disruption in the lives of the Altalar was due to their abandonment of the true Pantheon with the addition of Talea, whereas the widespread changes to the world during the Cataclysm benefited the Cielothar, indicating their change in worship made her look upon them kindly. Worship of the Transformer is performed by allowing a Yanar to ovalate from the worshiper two times, to incur transformation, then uttering their prayer to Ellea quietly. The vocal prayer to Ellea is often uttered by Cielothar when performing the Estel Cleansing ritual with Cielothar Ritualism.
Vallea, the Bearer
Vallea is the Bearer, and is depicted as an average Cielothar of no discernible gender, lifting a heavy boulder carved with the landmasses of the known world upon it. Vallea is called upon when the worshiper takes on responsibility in their lives; nearly all Cielothar are seen to invoke Vallea at length soon after their child is born. Vallea is recognised as a Pantheon god in the form of a Cielothar, to demonstrate the responsibility held by Cielothar to preserve the natural world around them. Invoking Vallea is performed by the lifting of any heavy object above their head three times; this object is usually a heavy rock, though this can be substituted for something of equal weight if necessary.
Sca’Elle, the Crafter
Sca’Elle is the Crafter, and is depicted as a short but strong male Cielothar with long hair. Sca’Elle is invoked most frequently when the act of creation is engaged in, usually when building Forest Walls or the identifying windmill of a Cielothar settlement, though also when tools are being crafted, or food cooked. He is invoked to ensure whatever is being created achieves the greatest possible quality, and will serve its purpose well. Worship of Sca’Elle is performed by rapping one’s knuckles against a hard surface four times, then softly singing their prayer continuously for the duration of their time spent working on their creation; oftentimes, the collapse of buildings or premature breaking of tools is blamed on its creator either failing to sing their prayer, or ending their prayer song too early. The vocal prayer to Sca’Elle is often sung by Cielothar when performing stone-singing with Cielothar Ritualism.
Outer Court Pantheon
Asc’tea, the Negotiator
Asc’tea is the Negotiator, and is depicted as a tall and slender Cielothar woman with long hair that flows over her back. Rather than the seductress and deceiver she is depicted to be in the Altalar faith, the Cielothar see Asc’tea as a resolver of conflict and mediator; they view her seduction and lying in the Altalar faith to be indicative of their own inability to compromise, and posit that these actions are simply reflections of what the prideful Altalar must do to negotiate. Asc’tea is called upon when skills in diplomacy are needed, or when compromises must be made. Invoking Asc’tea is performed by kneeling for around five minutes to indicate deference, and uttering one’s prayer to Asc’tea while in this position.
Tal’Sieth, the Defender
Tal’Sieth is the Defender, and is depicted as a red-haired male Avanthar sat in the saddle of a stark black horse. Tal’Sieth is usually called upon soon after Ulley, but for different reasons. Whereas Ulley is invoked to protect against harm on a personal level, Tal’Sieth is invoked for the protection of others; while Ulley rides to the defense of the Cielothar, Tal’Sieth rides to the defense of Ulley in the Cielothar faith. Religious leaders in Cielothar settlements often hold a nightly invocation of Tal’Sieth for all of those who have left the settlement for other things. Cielothar call upon the Tal’Sieth’s protection for others by running a horsehair brush through the full length of one’s hair six times, then uttering a quiet prayer to Tal’Sieth. The vocal prayer to Tal’Sieth is often uttered by Cielothar when performing Blood Singing and creating Blood Wards with Cielothar Ritualism.
Ammu-Loa, the Guide
Ammu-Loa is the Guide, and is depicted as a kindly-looking aging female Cielothar. Ammu-Loa is largely ignored as a Pantheon member, though she is called upon when someone is near death, usually by or on behalf of the person dying. Unlike the Altalar faith, for Cielothar, Ammu-Loa leads the dead along a path to the Gates of Rebirth. This path takes a century to traverse, over which the person walking gradually loses their memory entirely, and is then returned to the very beginning of their life upon stepping through the Gates, to relive their life from start to finish. The Cielothar request that Ammu-Loa provides a safe journey by uttering the name of the dying seven times, before whispering their prayer.
Cae-Maen, the Healer
Cae-Maen is perhaps one of the most differently perceived Pantheon gods between the Altalar and Cielothar faiths, stemming mainly from the difference in their cultural values. Whereas the Altalar despise the values of compassion, charity, sacrifice, and humility, the Cielothar hold these aspects as paramount. As a result, Cae-Maen is perhaps one of the most important Pantheon gods to the Cielothar, but is paradoxically represented as a dark-haired pale Altalar woman in typical Altalar dress. Much like her status in the Altalar faith, Cae-Maen has no true way of worship, but whereas Altalar actively turn away from her, Cielothar find methods of worship in acts of giving. Cae-Maen is most often worshiped by healers, who are valued highly in Cielothar society.
Combat and Warfare
Cielothar generally refrain from engaging in any armed conflicts, preferring to remain peaceful and passive, but this has not enabled them to fully abstain from warfare while the Avanthar fight on their behalf. In this, the Cielothar have been known to defend themselves from attack, but never to actively strike out. The most common threat the Cielothar fend off are the Wolond Kathar; forest-dwelling Void Worshipers who cannot be stamped out by Avanthar work, due to the the Avanthar reliance on horseback combat which fundamentally cannot function in dense forests. These Wolond have a fundamentally different understanding of religion and respect for nature than the Cielothar do, and will often reach out from their forest dwellings to attack and invade Cielothar settlements. In response to this, the few Cielothar willing to take up the School of Atraves will intervene, alongside trained Yanar and available Avanthar horselords, to fend off and scare away the Wolond invaders. In this, the Cielothar demonstrate a defensive-pacifist alignment, refraining from combat unless absolutely necessary for their own survival. Away from their settlements, Cielothar tend to provide support in conflicts rather than actively engage in them, usually offering up Light Sung Armor or Blood Wards to protect specific combatants from harm, though otherwise will attempt to remain uninvolved.
Economy and Technology
Cielothar economy is largely based on the triangle barter trade with the Yanar and the Avanthar. The Cielothar themselves produce copper jewelry and agricultural products while they acquire Avanthar pelts, hides and leather, and Yanar herbs and fruits. While this is officially seen as a barter trade however, it is actually closer to a mutual donation agreement. The value of items is not set; sometimes a drought means the Cielothar offer nothing to the Yanar and Avanthar, yet they still continue to give whatever they can spare. Among the Cielothar themselves, there is barely any currency. It is often just the act of providing for the needy that causes the Cielothar to share food with their neighbors. This makes it difficult for Cielothar to adapt to Regalia sometimes, as they expect their friends to just always do everything for free for them. While they also would do that in return, it’s quite obvious that a Cielothar may not possess great financial riches to achieve much at all in a capital so built on commerce. Technologically speaking the Cielothar are very backwards, relying mostly on local produce. One thing that the Cielothar excel at however is harnessing the power of the wind. No other race or people has the level of expertise at building windmills as the Cielothar do, and their windmills in particular have a very high productivity rate when it comes to turning wheat into very fine flour.
- The Cielothar don’t adhere to any monarchy system anymore. They have completely abandoned the old Elven Empire lineage, rejecting the restoration attempts of the Altalar.
- Cielothar regularly intermingle with the Avanthar, which surprisingly enough often recreates an Altalar. It is very common for Cielothar to fall in love with Avanthar who often look more mature and rugged, an exciting alternative to the otherwise borish Cielothar. These children are labelled Ciellonian Altalar by pure Altalar, with a tendency towards darker tan skin and brown hair, but lacking the capability to access the Talea Rings used by pure-blooded Altalar.
- Cielothar often imitate the Yanar practice of hanging offspring pods from trees by having large beams stick out of their central windmill. From these beams (at around head level), they hang suspended straw baskets with their infants in them. They are then cared for by the Great Mother and her disciples while the parents work in the farming fields or go to the Forest wall to bring offerings.