Marrow is a powerful country led mainly by four clans of elves. They live under the rule of a matriarch, who typically rules for a couple hundred of years.
Bordered by the Serpent Sea and the Indrus Channel to the west, and the Amnicon Ocean to the east. Marrow is a rather tropical country with rain forests in the north and mangrove swamps in the south. The country also encompasses two relatively large islands, the larger one is called Selva and the smaller one, being a mini archipelago, is called the ebony isles.
Zin Trees Edit
Zin trees are extremely rare trees found within Marrow that only bloom once every couple hundred years and produce a single seed. The tree is known to have magical properties and thus one is planted in each clans capital, with the oldest Zin tree residing in Elder. Because the elves in Marrow live such long lives (typically around 200-400 years), when it becomes time to crown a new matriarch usually a Zin tree would have bloomed by then. So during the crowning, a matriarch ceremonially swallows a Zin seed because it is believed to increase their strength over time so that they will become a more powerful ruler.
The Ebony Isles Edit
The Ebony Isles is arguably the most alien landscape within Marrow, and possibly within Valar. The exotic islands are typically covered in fog, and are covered in strange monuments and carvings that correlate to the cultural practices of the islands peoples, the Vaneer.
The Ebony Isles is composed of six main islands with smaller ones scattered around them. The main islands are Lua Dormir, which is the center island and hosts the capital Varasha. The other five islands seem to almost form a ring arounf Lua Dormir, blocking the island from stormy seas and strong winds. The other five islands, starting with the island directly to the east of Lua Dormir and going in a counterclockwise fashion, are Titunua, Renalis, Barahu, Erihar, Irati.
The capital of Marrow, Elder is a city that resides on the Island of Selva. The city as well as the island is neutral territory, not under the control of any one ethnic group. The oldest Zin tree within Marrow is in the city of Elder. The Matriarchs quarters and meeting room is carved into this giant tree. and fountains are placed on the branches, so that water flows down from one pool to another. The rest of the city looks rather modernized, taking architectural features from all four of the elven races.
Arbor is a sprawling city that is Incorporated into the jungle around it. It is the capital city of the Inari and is located roughly in the center of their territory. The city is rather urban, but also closely related to the jungles around it and is environmentally friendly. The city is build among the tall jungle trees, with many bridges and spires.
The capital of the Sassagira, Restoria is a city that lies on the beautiful Asan Bay. While still a large city, Restoria has more of a traditional feel, and is somewhat more reminiscent of the slow moving rural life experience by most Sassagira in the outlying villages.
Deemed one of the most magnificent cities in all of Valar, Silica is a grand city built in the emerald caves out of various glowing stones and crystals. Silica is the capital of the Ryke and is located deep underground. Its surface position is roughly in the middle of the mangrove swamps. Light is provided by glowing crystals and the city is surrounded by astonishing rock formations. Many of the buildings are smaller than normal, as the Ryke are not as tall as a human.
Vaarasha is the capital of the Vaneer territory, and is located on the island of Lua Dormir. The city is mainly built our of white stone and black wood, a common trope in Vaneer architecture. Varasha is also the location of the grand temple of Lua, a holy place that has been noted to have beautiful architecture.
The religion in Marrow, Oracy, is an ancient one that all elves used to follow. While all Marrowans recognize every deity, specific clans seem to champion specific Great Ancestors. The Vaneer champion Mar and Lua, the Ryke champion Velhar, the Inari champion Zolisar and Arvana, and the Sassagira champion Vibora. There is a seventh deity, named Unora, who is championed somewhat by the capital, Elder. Due to their religion being such an integral part of their lives, the Marrowans are also commonly called the Oretic Elves.
The Elven Races of Marrow Edit
Not much is known about the various Elven races that inhabit this land. The ruler of this country is always matriarchal and, while she rules for life, seems to rotate from race to race so no two consecutive matriarchs are from the same ethnic division. The 4 Main ethnic groups are: the Ryke, cave elves who typically inhabit the giant and multiple emerald cave systems scattered throughout Marrow; the Inari, jungle elves who typically inhabit the jungles north of the Deepwood Brook; the Sassagira, swamp elves who inhabit the vast mangrove swamps on the south side of Deepwood Brook, but also control some small islands in the serpent sea; and the Vaneer, elves who inhabit the Ebony Isles. Each main ethnic group has a capital within their territory but the main capital, Elder, is on the island of Selva, which is completely devoted to the capital and is neutral territory if any of the main clans begin to fight.
Most denizens of Marrow have some form of power but not all have very strong or very much magical power and some don't have a power at all. Although each clan officially has its own designated power (water for the Sassagira, plant/wood for the Inari, earth for the Ryke, and moon for the Vaneer), due to centuries of cooperation and mingling there are occasionally people that hold a power from a different clan. But in general the mainland elves have earth, water, wood, or plant based powers with occasional deviation.
The Inari Edit
The Inari inhabit the jungles north of the Deepwood Brooke. They are the most well known of all the Marrowan clans, as the jungles in which they live dominate most of Marrow's land borders. The Inari tend to be the most diplomatic of the elven races, which also contributes to their reputation of being the friendliest of the Marrowan elves. Their capital is the grand city of Arbor, a sprawling city that is fully incorporated into the jungle around it. it is located in roughly the center of Inari territory. The banner of the Inari is a red tree on a green background.
The inari are rather tall in stature, typically standing around at least 6 feet. They are thin and agile, but still sturdy and strong. They typically have copper or reddish skin and green and yellow eyes.
The Inari tend to have wood or plant based powers, and use them quite frequently. While having magical abilities is common to every elf, many Inari somewhat ignore their magical abilities as they live a somewhat more cosmopolitan lifestyle. While all young Inari are still trained to establish their magical powers, many grow up to use them very infrequently during their everyday lives.
The Sassagira Edit
The Sassagira inhabit the Mangrove swamps south of the Deepwood Brooke, and some small islands in the Serpent Sea. Their capital is the port city of Restoria which lies on Asan Bay. The Sassagira are rather friendly elves that tend to be more traditional and conservative. Many Sassagira Matriarchs pass the more conservative policies during their rule. The banner of the Sassagira is a purple snake on a blue background.
The Sassagira are slim elves with greyish or blueish skin. They typically have small, dull colored eyes. They are around the same height as the Vaneer and Inari.
Many Sassagira utilize water magic. Magic to the Sassagira is more spiritual, as they see it as a connection to Vibora. Some Sassagira even practice snake-charming, as it is considered a sacred art and is important in their religion. One particularly popular technique is called "Vibora's Grace". It is a somewhat complex technique where an individual wraps water around their waist in the fashion of a long, lizard-like tail. Practitioners of this technique are often very adept in its use, the tail functioning as an extra limb, the technique is quite potent in combat and even useful in everyday life.
The Ryke Edit
The Ryke live in the emerald caves below the surface of Marrow. The Ryke Capital is located deep underground, but if it were on the surface it would be in roughly the center of the mangrove swamps. The capital is named Silica and is a glistening city full of underground minerals and breathtaking views. The banner of the Ryke is a green crystal on a tan background.
The Ryke are shorter in stature to the rest of the Elves, and even humans, standing on average at roughly 5 feet. They typically have pale, sandy-colored skin and large eyes of various colors including browns and yellows and greens. Their most shocking feature is that their eyes resemble that more of a cat than they do a human or an elf.
The Ryke commonly practice earth magic. Due to the large abundance of minerals in the Emerald Caves and they Ryke's attraction towards shiny objects, many tend to use some mineral based magic instead of stone.
The Vaneer Edit
The Vaneer live on the Ebony Isles, an archipelago east of the mainland. Their capital, Varasha, is on the island of Lua Dormir. The banner of the Vaneer is a black crescent on a white background. They are somewhat more reclusive elves that tend to not fight or hold many political positions.
They tend to have darker skin and large, light eyes, as they say that they are direct children of Lua, the moon goddess. Their skin ranges from ashen grey to different hues of purple to ink black, and their eyes can be a multitude of colors from lilac to white.
The Vaneer tend to have a purer blood line due to their distance from the mainland. So almost all of them have power and they all have the same power, a very strange mystical power that they say derives from the moon. Not many, even in Marrow, understand their power but the most commonly know application is that they seem to be able to use it to enchant objects and typically the high enchantress for the matriarch is a Vaneer.