The life of a half-elf can be hard. If raised by elves, they grow with astounding speed, reaching maturity within two decades. Forced to leave behind their childhood friends, physically an adult but culturally still a child, a half-elf typically leaves their elven home to find their way among humans. If, on the other hand, the child is raised by humans, the half-elf finds themselves different from their peers; more aloof, more sensitive, less ambitious, and slower to mature. Some half-elves try to fit in among humans, while others find their identities in their differences. Some feel like outsiders all their lives.
To humans, half-elves look like elves. To elves, they look like humans - indeed, elves call them half-humans. Their height ranges from under 5' to about 6'0", and their weight usually ranges from 100 to 180lbs. Half-elven men are taller and heavier than half-elven women, but the diffeence is less pronounced than that found among humans. Half-elves are paler, fairer, and smoother-skinned than their human parents, but their actual skin tone, hair color, and other details vary just as human features do. Half-elves' eyes are green, just as are those of their elven parents.
The most prominent of the races of mixed heritage, half-elves can be found throughout Faerun, but have few lands to call their own. They feel at home both in the sprawling human empires, and the secretive elven retrats, standing between elf and human culture but truly belonging to neither. No true half-elven realms exist in Faerun, but half-elves are far more prevalent in some lands than in others. Half-elves are descended from humans and any of the many types of elves on Faerun: moon elves, sun elves, wild elves, wood elves or drow.
Half-elves are more slender than humans, and more heavily built than elves. Since the elves of Faerun are taller and more sturdily built than the elves of other worlds, Faerunian half-elves are very close to human size and weight. Drow-descended half-elves tend to have dusky skin, silver or white hair, and human eye colours. Moon half-elves tend toward pale skin with a tinge of blue around the ears and chin, sun half-elves have bronzed skin. The skin of a wild half-elf is medium-brown, while that of a wood half-elf is coppery, tinged with green.
Since the time of Kith-Kanan, when elves first began to interact extensively with human races, elves and humans have fallen in love and married. After the Cataclysm, human bandits and mercenaries raided Qualinesti borders, looting the elven lands, killing elven men and raping elven women. Half-breed children are the result of all manner of unions, whether born of love or hate the mixed blood of the half-elves forever brands them as outcasts from both societies.
Halfelves strongly resemble their elven parents, though unlike elves they are capable of growing facial hair. The coloration of half-elves in inconsistent with their elven heritage, while their eyes are quite often blue or hazel. Half-elves are more stocky than elves, but slimmer than humans. Lacking the unapproachable beauty of the elven parent, half-elves tend to be attractive, with fair skin and nimble grace.
From time to time, a particularly handsome or beautiful human with courage and a gracious manner can walk among the Sidhelien and return unscathed. Some humans have even come so far as to be accepted as equals in the elven courts. It can be easy for mortals to become lost in the elven spell; the years reel by in splendour and celebration, while the world outside comes to a halt or leaps centuries ahead.
Half-elves are the children of these unusual men and women and their elven hosts. The elves regard them as Sidhelien, and they are welcome in elven society. Humans are more suspicious of half-elves, referring to them as bewitched or changelings; it's rare for half-elves to leave the elven woods.
Like elves, half-elves are beautiful and graceful, but their builds are heavier - they are well within the human ranges of height and weight.
- Sleeplessness: Immmune to magical sleep effects
- Hardiness vs. Enchantments: +2 racial bonus on saving throws against mind-affecting spells
- Low-Light Vision: A high elf can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar *conditions of poor illumination. She retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions
- Partial Skill Affinity: +1 racial bonus to the Listen, Search and Spot skills