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Forgotten Realms - Sun Elf lifespan and family practices

Originally Posted by Blue Canary View Post
That write up you did for Olaria was awesome, I really appreciated it!
Glad you like it. Was my pleasure. They're fun for me to do.

Thanks for sharing that, Sorithar! That was really cool. This is what I have regarding my character's lineage. Any comments about timelines or anything else welcome!

House Sylairaque

House Crest: A blue-winged pixie with a raven in one hand and a dove in the other, a semicircle of six six-pointed silver stars over his head.

House Colors: Blue and silver (argent)

House motto: Galad Uireb ("Light Unending")

House Sylairaque Overview

The House began in Aryvaandar, founded by a powerful mage named Ansravar. The House survived the fall of empire and was involved later in establishing Siluvanede. House leaders resisted and spoke out against the eventual corruption of the kingdom and eventually cut ties with the kingdom before the Fifth Crown War, suing for mercy from the Elven Court in exchange for their renunciation of the Vyshaantar Empire. At the behest of the family's last Aryvandaaran patriarch, they eventually were involved in establishing Siluvenade until the Seven Citadels War broke out, whereupon they broke away and moved to Evermeet.

A few generations later, one Sylairaque patriarch, Almarael, returned to Faerun to join the efforts in Cormanthyr. The house stayed in Myth Drannor until it's fall. They barely survived, losing all of its leaders, and the survivors decided to relocate back to Evermeet instead of trying to rebuild the kingdom, and the family had remained there.

The house lost much of its influence since its near-destruction in the Weeping War, though Corihar has been obsessed with regaining influence in Evermeet at least, though he, like most of his most recent forebears, dismisses the thought of going back to Faerun. He resents Valandil and Ruasar's leaving, but is convinced the family will return once what he sees as their youthful wanderlust is over.

Kethamil (the pc) has never met his grandfather in person, only via magical means, since he has not been to Evermeet and Corihar is not interested in leaving his tower, despite numerous proddings from his now-deceased wife as well as Valandil and Nyralya, Valandil's sister, and Elethar, Valandil's nephew. Kethamil's interactions with Corihar, which were rather formal and terse, often left Kethamil feeling rather intimidated and unnerved and he understood his parents' decisions.

The family is known for producing talented mages, and the vast majority of the family's patriarch's have been wizards, though a few have been clerics or paladins (usually of Corellon).

Known modern family members:
- :
Age: 502. Born 870. Archmage, father of Valandil, Solviel and Nyralya. Hoping to learn high magic and quietly resentful that he hasn't been chosen yet. Stern, solemn, proud. Has never left Evermeet. Was against Valandil leaving to adventure, but Valandil convinced him by saying he was interested in trying to recover lost family relics. Disdains lesser races. Aspires to High Mage. Racist, isolationist.
Apparently wasn't always so steely. Got more bitter and exclusionary after wife was murdered by a drow assassin while she was trying to help elves from fallen Cormanthyr travel to Evermeet in the Retreat (an excursion Corihar did not approve of and which they had a falling out over before she left).
Consumed by grief over Amahel's death, he has become isolationist and believes the family is abandoning him by going on their excursions to the mainland. Stubbornly refuses to leave Evermeet despite family proddings.
A private man not given to emotional outbursts, it's obvious to everyone involved that Valandil's decision to emigrate to Faerun wounded Corihar deeply, and it is suggested the Valandil's actions were the catalyst for more of his family's "abandonment."

- (nee Baelaera):
Deceased. Lived 885-1350. Priestess of Sehanine Moonbow, mother of Valandil, Solviel and Nyralya. Met Kethamil once briefly when she visited them in Silverymoon prior to her self-appointed mission to aid The Retreat. Wife of Corihar. Killed somewhere in Faerun in 1350 by a drow assassin while helping sun elves leave from Cormanthor for Evermeet.
She embarked on her quest in late 1349 after receiving a vision from Sehanine that she needed to help. Until then, she had been content to stay in Evermeet and live a quiet dignified life with Corihar. She tried to get him to come with him but he was convinced it was a bad idea, and they had a falling-out over it.
She is buried in the family estate beneath Corihar's Tower in Leuthilspar, and it is said that he visits her grave every day.

- :
Age: 292. Born 1080. Wizard, born in Evermeet to Corihar and Amahel. Married to Ruasar. Spellguard of Silverymoon, Harper. Status and whereabouts unknown. Was compassionate and caring to Kethamil but also an exacting teacher. Rejects father's isolationist policies. Believes in the dream of Silverymoon as the "Myth Drannor of the North."
Apparently had a falling out with his father, Corihar, and brother, Solviel and sister-in-law Clarifyel over his decision to emigrate to Faerun with his wife, Ruasar. He argued with his father that the best way to reestablish the Sylairaque name was not by hiding in comfort in Leuthilspar currying favor with the nobility in Leuthilspar, but by returning to Faerun to aid in elven efforts there.
Valandil and Ruasar left for Faerun in 1210, wandering the land and adventuring for about 5 years before deciding to settle in Silverymoon to have their family and focus their efforts in Silverymoon and environs. Within that first couple years, Valandil was accepted as a teacher at the Lady's College, and soon after accepted into the Spellguard.
Corihar still apparently believes Valandil and co. will return to Evermeet once what he sees as their youthful rebellion is over, despite the evidence seeming to indicate otherwise.

- (nee Drevarean):
Age: 289. Born 1083. Artist and musician. Training as a bard (perhaps a spell singer?). Follower of Hanali Celanil. Mother of Kethamil and wife of Valandil. Free-spirited. Depressed since Valandil's disappearance.
It was rumored that Corihar wasn't especially pleased with Valandil's choice of bride, since Corihar hoped to offer his son's hand in marriage to the heiress of a more important family. But Ruasar won him over with her great beauty, charm, elegance and prodigious talent at strings and singing. Corihar somewhat blames her for changing Valandil's demeanor to be too free-spirited and somewhat wonders if it was her influence that convinced Valandil to move to Faerun.

Age: 285. Younger sister of Valandil. She was the more rebellious of her siblings, Valandil and Solviel. She was married at first to a promising mage named Sethien, a student of Corihar's. They were happy for a few years, until Sethien died in a magic accident while trying to make a new spell to win more favor with Corihar.
After that, Nyralya took the vows as a priestess of Elebrin Liothiel, and her nature-heavy views clashed a bit with the family's focus on arcana, and Corihar all but disowned her after she married a human druid follower of Eldath in 1368.
She idolized mother, and, in 1351, a year after Amahel's murder, left Evermeet to search Faerun to find her drow killer. One of the (among other) reasons Corihar was against Valandil and Ruasar's leaving Evermeet.
Supposedly Nyralya pleaded with her father to come with her to help bring Amahel's killer to justice, but in his grief and hopelessness he decided to stay, apparently disgusting her.
Nothing has been heard from her by the family since 1370.

- :
Age: 290. Younger brother of Valandil. Cloistered cleric of Labelas Enoreth in Evermeet. Shares father's views on most things. Rather disinterested in getting involved in Faerunian affairs.
Content to live a quiet life of luxury and modest importance with his wife. Thinks the family's misfortunes would be nullified if they would all stop getting crazy ideas in their heads to leave Evermeet.

Age: 293. Wife of Solviel. Marriage arranged between Corihar and Clafiryel's parents, it's been a good match since Clafiryel and Solviel share many interests and beliefs if perhaps not passion. Rumor has it she carried a flame for Valandil, but he loved Ruasar, whom also was a good friend of Clafiryel's.
She is a transmuter of some skill but prefers to put her powers and knowledge to use creating objects of beauty, particularly jewelry and musical instruments (though she herself doesn't have much musical skill).
Apparently she has been a little sad since Ruasar left with Valandil, since they had been almost inseparable companions since youth and many of Ruasar's favorite instruments had been hand-crafted by Clafiryel.

- :
Age: 143. Son of Solviel and Clafiryel. Bladesinger who currently resides in Evereska, interested in battling the elves' enemies, particularly drow. Has never met his cousin Kethamil.
Apparently disagrees with his parents' and grandfather's passive views toward Faerunian affairs, apparently trying to mold himself in the image of their ancestor Almarael.

Daughter of Solviel and Clafiryel, sister of Elethar. She is a musician of some skill as well as a budding talent with illusions. So far she simply enjoys a life of beauty and luxury in Evermeet, following her mother's example of using her powers and talents to create beauty. Was apparently hurt and confused at her brother's leavetaking for Faerun.

Younger brother of Ruasar's, uncle of Kethamil. Ranger/scout, elven hound companion, free-spirited explorer. Had met Kethamil a couple times. Follower of Rillifane. Peripatetic wanderer, loner.

Age: 44. Now-husband of Nyralya, Arund is apparently a druidic follower of Eldath whom Nyralya met somewhere on the Sword Coast. They were married in 1368. He joined her in her quest to find Amahel's killer. Nothing has been heard from him or her since 1370.

Known (But how much, and how much is true?) ancestors:
- : Founder of House Sylairaque not long before the start of the First Crown War. Mighty mage, fought in Crown Wars. Believed in the superiority of Sun Elves as Corellon's chosen, obsessed with keeping race pure. Fervently believed the other elf races "needed" Sun Elf guidance. Modern family have mixed opinions of him. All respect his recorded prowess as a mage but his legacy as a Crown Wars supporter and Aryvandaaran expansionist is something most modern Sylairaques try to distance themselves from. Corihar's veneration of him makes some (including his son Valandil) uncomfortable.

Sylairaque Patriarch who, before the onset of the Fifth Crown War during the Elven Court's condemnation of the Vyshaantar Empire, sued for mercy for his House and received it, in exchange for Sylairaque's renunciation of any loyalty to the Vyshaan. Telhilion extricates House Sylairaque from the Vyshaan Empire and keeps it out of the war, though he loses a lot of clout within the Empire as a result. At his behest before he dies, the family takes part in establishing Siluvenade as the idea of a more peaceful "do-over" and way of atoning for Aryvandaar's crimes.

- :
Sylairaque Patriarch who resisted and spoke out against the corruption of Siluvanede, which eventually caused the family to flee their holdings in advance of the Seven Citadels' War and emigrate to Evermeet. At the last moment, Caelemar reportedly decided to send his family onward, himself staying behind to join other Siluvaneden defectors in Sharrven. He reportedly perished in the fighting against Siluvenade. Many modern Sylairaques point to Caelemar more than Ansravar as the embodiment of Sylairaque ideals. Valandil admired him enough that he had a copy of his portrait (the original of which hangs in Corihar's tower in Evermeet) commissioned for his and Ruasar's Silverymoon home.

- :
Paladin and Champion of Corellon Larethian who led the family back to Faerun from Evermeet to Cormanthyr around -200 DR. They remained in Cormanthyr until its fall. (Almarael is said to have taken part in campaigns against the drow and demons between -200 DR and Myth Drannor's founding, after which he died of old age). One of the only patriarchs who wasn't a wizard. Died of natural causes, got to see the founding of Myth Drannor at which his daughter, who had become a mage, aided in erecting the mythal.

One of the few Matriarchs of the family, Tialea, son of Almarael, inherited her father's dream of and love for Cormanthyr and she was one of the mages who lent her power toward the erecting of the mythal establishing Myth Drannor. She and her father were active in Cormanthyran affairs and both took part in the destruction of the temple of Moander in 171. She also later taught magic at the school in Myth Drannor.

Grandson of Almarael, son of Tialea, prominent mage and active in Myth Drannor politics. Perished at a venerable age in the Weeping War, along with his oldest and youngest son, his wife, and their families.

- : Son of Talethil, grandfather of Corihar. Survivor of the Weeping War. Saddened by the deaths of most of his family (including his father the patriarch and both his older brothers), he abandoned Faerun and left for Evermeet. Kethamil disagrees with his decision and thinks if he were in the same situation he'd have stayed.[/spoiler]

Very extensive and cool work @KillerK! I like the touch with the images.

Reading this made me wonder how many elven families can actually trace their roots back to Aryvaandar... Elves have long life spans, surely, but they've also had a very tumultuous and rather war and disaster ridden history in the Realms. Even the older elves, Moonflowers, for example, don't seem to trace their heritage back to that realm, though I don't doubt many Sun/Gold-Elves would claim too regardless

Even what is one of the most ancient surviving houses of the elves by canon, House Dlardrageth, does not trace its lineage back to Aryvaandar and Siluvenade, though I suspect that you are correct to assume some of the sun-elf families that fled to Evermeet after its founding might be able to trace back close to those realms. The dissolution of Aryvaandar after the Fifth Crown War would have been c. -9,000 DR, which even in sun elf terms, would be at least 11 generations and up. Though I get that humans aren't elves, how many humans can say what their ancestors 11 generations back did or were..? Just some thoughts...

Thanks, @Sorithar! I've thought about that too.

In my own family for example, on my mom's side we're somehow related to Meriwether Lewis, and a genealogist great-aunt of mine on my dad's side somehow traced our lineage back to the First Crusade, to a German knight named Sir Laurence (with some big gaps between). Other than the fact that he participated in the First Crusade, we really don't know anything else about him, and it took my great-aunt a long time and a lot of research to find that out (and maybe she was wrong somehow? I dunno, I'm not a genealogist).

My only explanations are either:

1: the Sylairaque founders were obsessive enough about their legacy that they somehow ensured the survival of a continuous family record/genealogy (an ancestral spellbook, or other enchanted chronicle, perhaps a kiira of some sort, something that each living patriarch would be extremely careful to ensure its continuance) so that they wouldn't be forgotten...

or 2: maybe someone later on, maybe Tialea or some other Cormanthyran Sylairaque, did the necessary research to find out (or maybe they made it up!).

Or 3: maybe when the Myth Drannor survivors fled to Evermeet they unearthed the remains of their previous family estate that eventually had been abandoned to return to Faerun and found stuff "Hey, the people who used to live in this abandoned tower were our ancestors!"

Also, with divinations and stuff like Lore Gems that contain information from a long time ago, it would be a lot easier to know that stuff...if we in real life could cast a spell and be like "who were my ancestors and where did they live" etc., or if we had a magic chronicle of our ancestors we could watch/listen to, we might know a lot more about our ancestors. The only trick is making sure the thing that contains that information doesn't get lost, lol.

As it is, the ancestors from Siluvanede and back would probably not have much known about them and some of it may be embellished (history after all is written by the survivors...)

I've always liked the idea of a really old, noble, once-important-but-not-so-much-anymore elven House, wracked by tragedy and sorrow but also marked by moments of great heroism...the reason I like to play sun elves is they remind me most of Tolkien's Noldor elves, and the House of Feanor is always my inspiration, lol


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