Elementals are roughly defined as spirits that manifest in the physical plane by creating bodies made out of the classical elements. They are much more complex than that though, and a water elemental isn't just moving water with a mind of its own. They are living embodiments of their element, being able to control it in the natural or man-made environment.
Most elementals that start off in their incorporeal forms are invisible unless they appear in indefitine forms like flickering flames or balls of water. Elementals can manifest bodies as amorphous constructs but many take on a humanoid shape as well. They can also form tattoo like markings on or clothing from their bodies to further customize their appearance.
Incorporeal: Elementals are lifeforms composed of a type of subtle matter called animist teleplasm which does not interact with normal matter, and isn't sensed by corporeal beings. They can also produce animist ectoplasm which has a strong affinity with the classical elements. Agelessness: Elementals do not deteriorate or die from the aging process. However, most can still be killed from injury or malnutrition. Sleeplessness: Elementals do not require rest or sleep to normally function as long as they work at a moderate pace. They are capable of sleeping and if an elemental exhausts themselves, sleep can restore their stamina faster. Breathlessness: Elementals do not need to breathe to stay alive or function properly although they are physically capable of doing so. Air elementals prefer to breathe air and water elementals prefer to breathe water despite neither needing to respire because they enjoy the sensation. Elemental Mimicry: As their bodies are formed from their specific element, they can easily take on the inherent properties of said substance or mimic the flesh of organic creatures. Elemental Regeneration: Elementals can use preexisting sources of their element to reform their bodies, with the amount of said element used determining the rate of healing. Elemental Intangibility: Elementals can use the inherent properties of their element to achieve a form of intangibility, allowing attacks to either pass right through them or be harmlessly absorbed into their bodies, depending on their element. This also can allow them to pass around solid objects that do not obstruct the element the user is made of. However obstructions or materials that affect their composed element will still affect them and they can't pass through air tight spaces. Elemental Absorption: Elementals can absorb elemental forces into their body and use it in various ways to gain some form of advantage, either by enhancing themselves, gaining the drained power, or using it as power source. Possession: Elementals can inhabit the body of living beings to interact with physical objects. However their affinty with organic molecules is low so most can't maintain control over a creatures body for long periods of time. Corporeal Manifestation: Elementals can create corporeal forms for themselves with ambient inorganic substances. The ectoplasm they produce has a high affinity to these materials and by absorbing magic power in the environment, imbues the element with the spirit's vitality to form a construct. Elementals can even compress their element to maintain a solid form and take on the consistency of an organic body, especially if the form is humanoid. This process usually takes days or weeks when the elemental creates its body for the first time, but becomes much faster afterwards, should the spirit dispell and inhabit another body. However, once an elemental spirit has chosen a type of element to inhabit, it will never be able to use another type. A fire elemental will never become an water elemental, for example. Moreover, for an elemental, leaving its body can be an unpleasant and sometimes traumatic experience, especially if they got used to it and physical sensations over a long period of time. Elemental Manipulation: Elementals have the telekinetic ability to move and shape the element of their make up that exists within the environment. They can also conjure more of their element from the natural mana in the environment or within their own bodies. Shapeshifting: Elementals can mold and shape their bodies into a variety of forms including objects and creatures. They can also internally replicate organ systems to perform the biological functions carrried out by them. Elemental Transportation: Elementals can move by becoming their element and merging into a preexisting source of their element to move at a faster speed through it. Recomposition: Elementals can fuse their minds and bodies together to form an entirely seperate entity composed of a composite element. Combined elementals can use the individual powers of their constituents as well as manipulation of their combined element. While most are temporary, the components can choose to stay fused indefinitely. Fused elementals are only made by pure elementals, a combined one can only produce its pure elemental constituents. Miniature Duplication: Elementals can generate little replicates from their bodies. These cloned bodies can think and act in the same way as the main body, and can also make use of the elemental's power. They're more like independent intermediaries, with the will and ability to take action when exercising the elemental's power, rather than doppelgangers. In the case that they use power, an equivalent amount of elements is expended by the main body. They're mainly used in the case when using the elemental's power in a distant location, or when they want to use it in many locations in a wide area at the same time. Furthermore, the main elemental can also change into a miniature form. Since they can curtail element expenditure when in this tiny form, it's efficient for conserving energy when not doing anything or when moving.
Genetics and Reproduction
Incorporeal elementals are born from the natural magic power in lands rich in their corresponding element. Earth elementals for example are occasionally born from caves rich in ore or forests with fertile soil. Elementals that form corporeal bodies can also reproduce through internal sexual intercourse with each other. Unlike those that start off incorporeal, these elementals gestate their offspring inside their bodies to give birth to offspring with their own corporeal bodies.
Growth Rate & Stages
Incorporeal elementals don't have a body and the bodies they create are adult sized and do not physically age. Elementals that come from their parents bodies however, are born as babies and grow like humans until they reach an adult form.
Ecology and Habitats
Depends on the subspecies; earth live in forests and caves, water ones live in lakes and springs, wind ones live in the highlands and mountains, fire ones live in deserts and around volcanoes.
Dietary Needs and Habits
Elementals manifested in physical form assimilate their constituent element for the magical energy and structural nutrition for their bodies. They consume any element they don't conjure themselves in various forms such undines partaking of ice or snow, and terrans on crystals or coal. As such elementals can even feed off of others of the same type, usually sapient ones consuming the feral ones but the reverse can sometimes happen. Elementals who shapeshift an internal digestive system can also consume material that other creatures feed on such as organic compounds. While they can still provide chemical energy by being digested, anything that can't be integrated into the elemental will be eliminated as solid or liquid waste.
Feral elementals can be domesticated by summoning pacts and exorcisms
Uses, Products & Exploitation
Magical Summons, Draft creatures, production of their composite element like water
Geographic Origin and Distribution
Feral to Sapient
Perception and Sensory Capabilities
ESP: Extrasensory Perception is the default set of senses for an incorporeal elemental. This includes clairvoyance, which is sight using psychic energy that allows them to perceive the spirit realms. Also includes telepathy which allows for distant communication through psychic force. Elemental Detection: Elementals have the ability to sense the presence of the element they are composed of in their general vicinity.
Civilization and Culture
Elementals were among the various wayward spirits created in the unique conditions of the Early Arcane Realm. Most of them started out with feral and purely instinctive minds but over time more acquired higher functioning and sapience. They don't see themselves as a race at all, just individual and unique entities, meaning they haven't formed their own grand civilization throughout history and would rather live in the wilderness. Some have been minorities in other nation states mostly through enslavement or defending territory from Shaytan. During the wars it became common to awaken wayward spirits and summon them as elementals. After the conflict and with the collapse of most civilizations, elementals escaped and propagated in the wilderness for centuries. When new societies sprung up again, some mages would come to lands where elemental spirits dwelled in order to make pacts with sapient elementals, serving as summons in battle or familial guardians. In certain areas some are released by their their summoner
Slyph, Undine, Terran, Ignan