In the days of the First Flowering, many elves, especially the wood elves of the great forests primeval, fell in love and mated with the Mista'Sum or Forest Daughters (dryads) of the day. Their offspring, although never numerous, were common enough to be accounted a people in their own right. These Cha'Mista'Sum dwelt mainly in the realms of Eiellûr, Illefarn, Thearnytaar and Trachtenmai.
(Trachtenmai being a forest realm of my own devising. Its folk are mostly sylvan creatures alongside a few wood elves)
Half-dryads generally consider themselves neither elven nor dryad, but something new and special, although they almost always stay on good terms with their parents. There are no half-dryad realms, but some small forest hamlets have appeared here and there, especially in Trachtenmai.
Personality: Even by the standards of wood elves, half-dryads are incorrigible free spirits. They are utterly unreserved and curious, and prone to wanderlust upon coming of age. These wanderers are the ones most commonly encountered outside the forests. A half-dryad will offer up any thought in her head when asked, or when not, and it takes some experience for them to learn the values of tact and silence.
Despite their occasional flightiness, half-dryads are loyal friends and will fight to the death for their cause, creed or kin.
Physical Description: A half-dryad looks much like an elf of his father's subrace, although not without a trace of their maternal heritage - green hair, brown or green skin, or the like.
Relations: The existence of half-dryads is scarcely known outside of their forest homes. They get along well with their fey cousins, but their shyness and wild ways sometimes put them at odds with other elves, especially the proud sun and dark elves in their great cities. Some human tribesmen have been known to consider half-dryads divine messengers, while dragons and giants view them as little more than unusual meals.
Alignment: Raised in either elven or dryad cultures, it is no surprise that half-dryads are good-hearted and inclined to individualism. Some adhere to other forms of good, and a few half-dryads are chaotic neutral, but evil half-dryads are incredibly rare.
Religion: Most half-dryads worship the powers of the Seldarine, especially Rillifane Rallathil. The fey goddess Verenestra is also commonly venerated, especially by those half-dryads who follow their maternal heritage more closely. Whichever god they worship, half-dryads do so devoutly but with little taste for rules and scripture.
Language: Half-dryads speak the Sylvan language of their mothers as well as Quessir'il and their father's language, generally Eska'il. Many also learn Draconic and Giant to understand the great foes of the woodfolk, and sometimes Celestial.
(Going off a line in the old grey box I dug up while on vacation last week, I'm having seperate languages for the elf sub-races in the really old days of Faerun. Quessir'il is Elven Common, Eska'il is the language of the wood elves.)
Names: Half-dryads almost always have elven names, usually ones reflecting their sylvan heritage. A half-dryad often chooses the elven form of her mother's name as their personal name when she comes of age.
Adventurers: Most adventuring half-dryads are young wanderers just come of age. After a few years seeing the wider world, they return home, hopefully wiser from the experience. A few continue to travel and seek adventure long after that, though.
Half-dryad adventurers are rarely leaders, but make devoted companions and advisers. Their wisdom, while slightly askew sometimes, is usually worth heeding, and their forest lore is seldom surpassed.
Half-Dryad Racial Traits
- +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma, -2 Strength, -2 Constitution. Half-dryads are lithe and charming, but physically frail.
- Medium: As medium creatures, half-dryads have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
- A half-dryad’s base land speed is 30 feet.
- Low-Light Vision: A half-dryad 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.
- Half-dryads have a +2 racial saving throw bonus against enchantment spells or effects.
- Wild Empathy: A half-dryad can use this druid class feature, except that she uses her Cha modifier (and her druid class levels, if any) as a bonus on the check.
- Racial Skills: Half-dryads have a +2 racial bonus on Listen, Spot and Search checks.
- Spell-like Abilities: 1/day - entangle, speak with plants, tree shape. Caster level 1st; save DC 10 + half-dryad's Cha modifier + spell level.
- Automatic Languages: Quessir'il, Eska'il, Sylvan. Bonus Languages: Celestial, Draconic, Giant.
- Favored Class: Druid. A multiclass half-dryad’s druid class does not count when determining whether she takes an experience point penalty.
- Level adjustment: +0.