Founded by elves that broke off from their brethren centuries ago to explore their magical roots, the Eladrin migrated to the frozen southern landmass known as Forshac. There they built a strong tribal culture centered on exploring and communing with the magical world. Some more enterprising Eladrin have even former colonies in the far north on the frozen edge of the Harandar Islands known as Forbith though these represent only a small portion of the Yskilian tribe.
Size and Population
The Yskilian Eladrin are often called Snow Elves because of the frozen regions they call home, though in fact they are physically no better adapted to the cold than their elven cousins. They have, however, honed their magical skills to be able to survive the harsh and often extreme cold that accompanies their chosen homeland. The tribe intentional chose such an inhospitable land so as to discourage outsiders and they are an inherently isolationist race. They rarely take in outsiders, though in recent years they have chosen to offer asylum to elves and half-elves fleeing Barastovar slavers.
The Yskilian are lead by the strongest and wisest among their people, though as an innately magical people this strength is not always measured in terms of physical strength. Each individual village is typically overseen by a tribe of revered elders and it is often (though not always) from among these that the Yskilian Tribal leader arises. Local elders are rarely specifically chosen but naturally fall into the role due to their duties and commitment to their community. The Tribal Leader however is chosen by a contest when the current leader has grown unable to fulfill the role. Candidates for this contest must receive the bless of all their villages elders or they cannot compete. For this contest, the most respected elders use their magical abilities to locate the most dangerous White Dragon they can and place a magical mark upon its head. Those who wish to compete for the role of Tribal Leader must then go into their frozen wilderness armed only with a ceremonial sword and a limited pack of supplies to hunt the dragon. However a single man cannot overcome such a powerful dragon, so they are expected to seek out and subdue a smaller dragon and through magic or force of will ride it into combat to slay the marked creature. Only by returning with the head of the marked dragon on their own dragon mount can a competitor claim the role Tribal Leader. Contests such as these rarely occur more than once in an Eladrin’s lifetime and it usually takes several weeks for a victor to emerge. During this time the Yskilian hold non-stop celebrations in honor of the previous Tribal Leader and the competitors. After a victor emerges the celebrations continue for another week in his or her honor before the official crowning of the new Tribal Leader occurs. Attending for at least part of the festivities, and particularly the crowning of the new leader, is seen as practically a sacred duty for any Yskilian. As such nearly the entire Yskilian nation gathers together during the time of the Great Contest, even the far northern colonies make the trip with attendees from several villages banding together to make the journey as a large caravan. These caravans coming from the north are famous in the Harandar islands, as these caravans are typically celebrating constantly during their journey and, in an odd antithesis to their isolationist culture, welcome anyone to celebrate with them as they pass. Some islands specifically prepare festivals and other events to coincide with the arrival of these travelling revelers. However, outsides are specifically not welcome at the Great Contest itself and none are allowed to pass within their borders during the time of the Contest. Any visiting dignitaries or other outsiders who have not been welcomed to the tribe are also forced to leave for the duration of the festivities unless specifically invited by the outgoing Tribal Leader (a very rare honor).