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Tel-quessir are a race featured in the Forgotten Realms series. They are a fey elven race. Though this (Tel-quessir) term now acknowledged to be technically inaccurate. Nonetheless, the name is common and many of the Tel-quessir consider themselves as one larger culture and share a common history together.
Although individual Tel-quessir races exhibit a number of unique traits, there are some features which are common to all of the races. Tel-quessir tend to be fair, beautiful and graceful, though they are very often frail as well. Tel-quessir are also universally long-lived, achieving what they consider adulthood at 110 years of age and living for up to 700, and more years thereafter.
Many Tel-quessir do not sleep but instead “trance,” though this is an ability universal only for eladrin. During this state, Tel-quessir are partially aware of their surroundings and are less asleep than an act of meditation. In this state, Tel-quessir achieve the same results as a human might through sleeping in roughly two thirds the time. Tel-quessir able to trance are also often resistant to the effects of supernatural powers such as sleep, since they do not themselves sleep but instead rest in a semi-aware state.
Tel-quessir, as a rule, tend to be supremely aware of their surroundings, with more potent senses of sight and sound than humans. All Tel-quessir have the ability to see in low light conditions unhampered, though drow also possess the ability to see in the dark.
Tel-quessir have an affinity for freedom more than anything else, preferring the way of unrestricted liberty to the restraints of civilized law and order. Liberty, both of one’s self and of others, tends to be the greatest virtue in Tel-quessir cultures. This love for freedom is often tempered by a good and generous nature, though not always, drow in particular standing out as an example of evil amongst the Tel-quessir.
Because of this, Tel-quessir governments tend to be very loosely organized, with small groups of Tel-quessir accepting the legitimacy of a respected noble, who in turn acknowledges the authority of a monarchical king. Though Tel-quessir empires have been built in the past, few in the present currently exist. Instead, most Tel-quessir, be they eladrin or elf, prefer to live in natural harmony with nature.
Tel-quessir are typically omnivorous, like humans, but tend to eat very little meat. This is not so much out of a concern for the animal as an effort to make as little of an impact on the natural world as possible, with Tel-quessir believing that the consumption of vegetation has a slighter effect on the natural harmony. Additionally, this partially comes from many Tel-quessir cultures’ traditions of nomadic life, which require food to be easily preservable.
Tel-quessir tend to take up the adventurer’s lifestyle for a number of reasons. Some do so out of, more than anything, boredom or a sense of wanderlust that drives them to explore beyond the boundaries of their homelands. Tel-quessir do not like being tied down and most often pursue careers that lend themselves well to adventuring. Some Tel-quessir enjoy adventuring as a way to demonstrate their own skill, such as with a bow or sword, while others do so in order to help others.
Tel-quessir are a relaxed people, with a degree of patience and detachment granted to them by their long lifespans. Tel-quessir are not easily excited and lack the greed that sometimes characterizes other races. Most Tel-quessir are unconcerned with the events that only affect the short-term and are likewise slow to make friends or enemies since time for them is measured in centuries, not decades. Focused in whatever they apply themselves to, Tel-quessir ignore the slight but rarely forget the serious.
Because of their long lifespan, most Tel-quessir have a patience uncommon to other humanoids. Tel-quessir view the lives and concerns of younger races as fleeting and take less joy in the short-term victories that other races have to content themselves with. Instead, Tel-quessir take pleasure in things that have more endurance, such as the arts or the honing of one’s skills.
"Tel-quessir" is the elven word for "the people". Likewise, "N-Tel-Quess" is the elven word for "not people" and is used to refer to races outside of the Tel-quessir. This often gives other races the impression that Tel-quessir are elitist, racist and condescending to other races, but most simply see these as words with no hidden meaning or agenda.
Although the other races sometimes believe the Tel-quessir to be arrogant and condescending, the fey races don't hold any particular hatred for any races as a whole, though individual races may have particular attitudes. The harshest racial conflict for the Tel-quessir is actually often within, given the long-standing feud between the drow and the other Tel-quessir races. The Tel-quessir can seem distant and unfriendly because many of the other races, such as humans and halflings, have a much shorter lifespan. It is easier for one of the Tel-quessir to avoid contact with these races, rather than befriend individuals who will live only a small fraction of the elven life.
Dwarves and the Tel-quessir generally have a different problem in forming relationships. Dwarves favor hard work whereas the Tel-quessir generally enjoy relaxation. Dwarves enjoy carving homes from the rock and engineering unswerving straight lines, while elves prefer more natural, flowing shapes. Dwarves and Tel-quessir can form strong bonds of friendship, but only when both agree to overlook each other’s differences.
Gnomes and Tel-quessir, both fey creatures in origin, generally get along well due to their mutual love of life, combined with the gnomes’ love of fine art and illusion magic. On the other hand, halflings and Tel-quessir share only a lukewarm relationship. The Tel-quessir trait of eating sparingly is not welcomed in halfling society, and Tel-quessir can sometimes deem a halfling's curiosity as childlike and troublesome.
Tel-quessir regard humans with both fear and respect. Humans can grasp magic and adapt to many situations incredibly fast from the perspective of the Tel-quessir, but the fey are wary of the human tendency to claim lands as their own, often regarding them as greedy. It is quite possible for strong friendship to develop between humans and Tel-quessir, but it is equally possible that hostilities might arise.
See the elf page for more information.
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