Fairy Species in Arcane Realm | World Anvil
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Small flying nature lovers who work hard by playing hard

Fairies are a species of fey native to Kaf, with pointed ears and two pairs of insect or bird like wings on their backs. From birth and throughout their childhood, they are a minuscule size until they have a growth spurt that quickly sizes them up to other humanoids. Fairies are also unique in that adults can revert to their juvenile state if they become too old from natural causes.   A hallmark of fairies is the importance of play. Practically every fairy community focuses on playing, even into adulthood. Their societies are structured around play, especially in the form of games. They even incorporate playing and gaming elements into practical areas of life like education and work or ideological areas like art and scientific research.   The most popular depiction of fairies is that of playful, curious and mischievous beings who love to have fun more than anything else. While many fairies are indeed light-hearted, carefree pranksters, this isn't their exclusive temperament. One can find solemn watchmen, serious scholars, mystic sages, and even dark, brooding warriors within their population. It is more accurate to classify fairies as beings of raw emotions as they often let their feelings guide their actions, and rarely keep their emotions bottled up.

Basic Information


Fairies appear as short yet slim humanoids with two pairs of wings from the shoulder blades. For most these wings either resemble those of butterflies, moths, dragonflies, or angels in form, function and coloration.   The frames for both sexes are lithe and slender, and both their hair and eyes are often bright colors from all the major hues. Most have subtly pointed ears but some fairies posses rounded ears like humans instead of pointed ones. As juveniles, they are very small in stature, often able to fit in the palm of a hand. Most fairies as adults they only grow up to the size of an older human child, around 130 cm; the exception to the rule are the fairy matriarchs and Peri who can grow to the size of young human women.   Peri are unique in that only females can inherit the typical traits associated with the phenotype: olive to brown skin, raven/brown/flaxen hair, hourglass figures, four wings with white feathers and sizes closer to those of fully grown human women. Males born of a peri will have their father's phenotype instead.

Biological Traits

Wings: All fairies have four wings that grow from their upper back, just beneath the shoulder blades to enable flight. Demoiselle fairies are those with clear veined wings like dragonflies or damselflies. Papillion fairies are those with scaled wings that mimic those of butterflies and moths, and Peri have white or platinum blonde feathers wings like those of a generic angel. These wings are roughly as large as the fairy itself, and are covered in waterproof scales or feathers. Thanks to fey regeneration, damaged fairy wings can regrow in a few hours. These are wings most important for the flight patterns of sprites. Although the wings are not necessary to get adult fairies into the air, they are the major means of propulsion once levitating off the ground.   Flight: Sprites fly by constantly flapping their wings like that of insects or humming birds to stay aloft. Adult fairies need not flap their wings as often since they can rely on their mana for levitation and propulsion. Instead their wings are more important for steering and speed.   Size Shifting: With the onset of puberty, fairies rapidly increase from a miniscule size to roughly the size of small humanoids like hauflins or homins. From then on, they have the ability to revert to their former size and vice versa but retain their post-pubescent changes and body proportions for then on.   Accelerated Regeneration Factor: Fairies can passively regenerate wounds in a short time via biomagical reactions speeding up the process. The extent of this regeneration can prevent the development of scar tissue and even regrow entire limbs within a few minutes to hours however these actions do not set any broken bones on its own. In addition, this trait is significantly slowed when the subject is increasingly exhausted or low on mana.   Agelessness: Fairies lack measurable symptoms of aging due to their cells' highly regenerative properties. As such they do not weaken, slow down, or lose fertility with age giving them great longevity, potentially for centuries. However excessive stress from their environment can overtax this ability and led to aging symptoms to accumulate likely leading to rejuvenation. Also they are not deathless and will eventually die due to mortal injury or disease beyond their regenerative capability.   Rejuvenation: If an adult fairy is exposed to environmental stress, physical assault, or illness it will revert into a juvenile sprite. Typically their entire bodies surge violently with stored biological magic and is repaired, restored and reorganized until it becomes that of a prepubescent sprite, occasionally with a different phenotype. The majority of nervous cells are also rearranged during the process, meaning that most memories from their previous life cycle are lost. It can only happen when the dying body is mostly intact, for example, missing limbs are fine but the head needs to remain attached to the torso for example. Theoretically, this process can go on indefinitely, effectively rendering the fairy biologically immortal, although in nature, most are likely to succumb to predation or disease in the sprite stage.

Genetics and Reproduction

Fairies reproduce when an adult Pixie (male) and an adult Nymph (female) mate. A nymph will gestate her babies for roughly 4 weeks on average. A pregnant nymph will often crave foods with or direct sources of magnetic minerals like iron, nickel or even lodestone (which they typically avoid otherwise).   A fairy mother will experience intense ecstasy similar to orgasm rather than pain while giving birth to the rice sized baby fairies or sprites. Typically a fairy gives birth to around 2 to 4 offspring at a time.

Growth Rate & Stages

Fairies are born as tiny helpless babies called sprites that are small enough to cling to the hair of their mother for the first few years of life. Even during childhood, sprites are still small enough to fit in an adult's hand but are very vulnerable to parasitic infection, being crushed, predation, or starvation.   Typically after half a century, their bodies develop the physical proportions and secondary sex characteristics of young adults despite maintaining their sprite size. Also even with their bodies going through a "pseudo-puberty", females are still incapable of becoming pregnant.   Around the age of 200 years, a fairy's metabolism goes into overdrive, forcing them to have to eat almost their whole body weight for roughly a season. Then one day the sprite will suddenly sprout into their full adult size. This becomes a period of disorientation due to adjusting from the size of a few inches they had for a hundred years or so to a larger permanent size in a matter of days. Also they have to adjust to a new way of flying as instead of constantly flapping their wings, fairies now fly by levitating of the ground with their magic power and use their wings or steering.   As a full grown pixie or nymph, a fairy can live for centuries without any signs of advanced aging. Even if they avoid any mortal injury or disease somehow, their bodies will eventually weaken from environmental stress. All of the above will force a fairy to revert into their childhood form and repeat the cycle if they survive.

Ecology and Habitats

The vast majority of fairies prefer a philosophy based on simple living and communalism, so the naturalist mode of living works best for most, followed by a rural lifestyle for some. The small portion of fairies in urban environments find ways to simplify their lives and foster their needs for interaction, many live in tree top cities as opposed to concrete ones and engage in community activities daily.

Dietary Needs and Habits

Plant matter like fleshy fruits, nuts, seeds and various legumes and fungi make up the bulk of a typical fairy diet. Fairies also consume fibrous foods like tubers and grains packed with carbohydrates to maintain their metabolism needed for flight. Fairies lucky enough to live where fatty plant matter like coconuts or avocados will often go for their high energy content. Fairies will also forage for fungi or eggs and hunt animals that pose almost no threat to them like worms, insects, snails and small lizards.   Fairies have a taste for sweet foods, high in sugar content. Many are able to make candies and sweet treats out of resins and syrup of the plants they forage or cultivate.

Additional Information

Social Structure

Fairies are very social creatures that depend on each other in order to survive. A Titania is a fairy with the special role of being the matriarch of any social group of fairies. They have amiable personalities full of kindness, and aside from assuming the duty of protecting and guiding the fairies, they also play with them; so they're kind of like big sisters to the childish fairies they look after. Each community has one Titania active at a time, so if she leaves, passes away, or rejuvenates, one of the largest adult females will instinctively take her place by changing her behavior and growing to Titania height.

Average Intelligence

Sapient: Cheerful, Meek, Mischievous

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

Magnetotactic Cells: Their bodies collect iron particles to make significant amounts of naturally occurring magnetite crystals in their cells chained up into strong magnets. Fairies can track the planet's magnetic field.   Keen Color Vision: Humans have 3 receptive cones in their eyes, allowing them to see red, blue, green and all the colors derived from them. Fairies have 5 receptive cones, meaning they can see a massive spectrum that human brains may be unable to process. For example, fairies have excellent ultraviolet vision.

Civilization and Culture

Gender Ideals

Fairies are very egalitarian and roles can be performed by any capable pixie or nymph. Girls are just as assertive and dominant as boys in pursuing or refusing a lover and this is not only allowed but encouraged.   The exception is that of the Titania. A Titania is leader of a community of fairies that develops from the largest female fairy.

Courtship Ideals

Sexuality is a very casual topic for most post pubescent fairies with very little taboos among them. As a species focused on play even in adulthood, they accept sex as a fun, new kind of game that feels really good, and then they end up enjoying the pleasure it brings them.   Many young fairies grow up near their parents, and thus observe sexual activity as a frequent and natural phenomenon. Once puberty starts, the youth may begin to play erotic games with each other and eventually they begin to pursue sexual partners in earnest. Despite their sexual activities, they aren't fertile until they become their adult sizes so pregnancy isn't an issue at that size.

Relationship Ideals

Most fairy communities have no real native marriage ceremony at all. Couples meet and hook up as there's never been any taboo against sex before marriage. In fact, most fairy societies lack the notion of exclusivity that comes with intimate relationships that many races have. There usually isn't much distinction for fairies when it comes to friendship, romance, or sexual intimacy in most cases. They also do not seem to discriminate in their relationships by sex or age, with the exception of parents and their children.   Rarely a couple may move in with each other and if the Titania sees this and approves, that's how the village knows that the relationship is serious. The emotional bond between two soulmates of this level is rare and may be the closest substitute for marriage but doesn't mean sexual exclusivity like with most races.

Average Technological Level

Although they don't have a distaste toward advanced technology, fairy societies very rarely craft complex tools themselves. Aside from sometimes making simple hand tools out of common raw materials, and occasionally making rudimentary clothes and accessories, fairies see little reason to create complex mechanisms and think it's just easier use magic to solve most of their problems.   However, they are almost all fascinated by inventions of other races, particularly humanoids. It's not uncommon for fairies to rummage through a hauflin's belongings, trying to find new and exciting items to fiddle with in hopes of discovering its intended use, usually with mixed results for both parties involved.

Common Dress Code

Nakedness for fairies is considered a highly honorable state in most cases, but fairies also tend to be fickle and will wear clothing that they find aesthetically pleasing or think will boost their sexual appeal. However fairies will resist adopting the clothing of others if they are given them or told to wear them. They will only pick up fashions of others of their own free will.   In warm and humid regions, complete nudity is often the social norm for both male and female fairies. Even in temperate regions, fairies would rather go around without clothing besides during winter. Even if they live near conservative species or within their settlements, many fairies are often nude in the privacy of their home or garden, alone and with members of the family.       Fairy clothing typically is composed of the natural materials of their environment, such as leaves, flower petals, grass blades, moss, woven spider silk, snake skin, and animal fur. Peri tend to live in desert regions so their clothing tend to be made out of the hair of any animals they herd or linen made from flax seeds. Since clothing is a borrowed concept, most of fairy society lacks the concept of wearing underwear since most make their own clothing based on what they've seen of other races.

Culture and Cultural Heritage

Fairy culture is very nature-focused and they believe in living ethically and in harmony with their environment instead of controlling it as larger humanoids do. They also value a person being true to their nature and don't believe in repressing emotions and desires that come naturally. As such they are often seen as open-minded hedonists or romantics who often flirt with people of other races.   Architecture   Forest fairies characteristically live in trees and not in a tree house, but actually inside the hollow trunk. Usually there will be a doorway in one side of the trunk, and a substantial space inside. The more elaborate of the abodes may have front steps, windows, back doors, and even chimneys visible from the outside and the nicest ones have several fully-furnished rooms inside. While hallowing out a dead tree is an option, many prefer keeping a furnished tree alive by only taking out what they need for a living space and using nature magic to maintain the flow of nutrients or trees maintained by a benign nature spirit like a dryad.   Plains fairy homesteaders have to rely on the building material most available to them— prairie sod. Sod is the top layer of earth that includes grass, its roots, and the dirt clinging to the roots. Sod houses accommodate normal doors and windows with the resulting structure being a well-insulated but damp dwelling that was very inexpensive. Most like mounds or the sides of natural hills.   Spirituality   Naturism is one of the oldest religions believed by fairykind as they are very protective of what they see as the natural order and the environment. Before the reign of the pantheons, fairies looked to nature spirits like dryads and elementals as idols and guides to respecting nature. Some even made it their goal to mate with and sire offspring with them.   Even after the deities established themselves, most fairies preferred to worship or go questing for the nature, fertility, or magic gods instead of a whole pantheon. After the gods left for the Samsara Pilgrimage, most fairies didn't have much of crisis, and instead returned to worshiping nature.     Fairy tend to spiritual folks but worship privately; many have two small shrines within their home, the first is for the worship of the natural order or their deity and the second usually larger and more elaborate to worship their ancestors. Those who follow the big world religions still maintain the balance of nature and environment first and many will synchronize that with their beliefs.     Weaponry   Fairies have historically avoided mass conflict with other species, many individuals abhor weapons and would sooner flee than get into a physical altercation with any enemy. However there have been events that forced them to build weapons to defend themselves. Fairies historically have used toys they play with as makeshift weapons like yo-yo's, slingshots, and bats.   Otherwise they use hunting weapons that rely less on their physical strength which tends to be lower than most races like slingshots, blow darts, throwing sticks and boomerangs. Fairies more often prefer magical weapons like wands, rods, grimoires or spellscripts, and staves which enhance of their strongest attribute, magic.

Common Customs, Traditions and Rituals

Socialization   Fairies are also tricksters who are either playful mischievous in their antics. They are generally extremely friendly and cheerful, only growing angry or malicious when seriously offended. Fairies typically pull usually harmless tricks on family and friends, and encourage good times with them. If sprites are misbehaving or pulling cruel pranks, adults will stop them and distract them with tickling or short games until forget about it and continue their good behavior.   Play is extremely important to fairies of all ages, sexes, clans, tribes and nationalities. Playing takes up most of the time of fairies and even continues into adulthood. Even the group leaders still engage in games and make-believe with the rest of their community.   Making up games is how fairies learn and teach others, and thus fairies are absolutely fond of learning new things anyway and would never miss a lesson without a good reason. Their teaching play and games are very informal and involves exploration of nature mainly through hands on observation. Sprites will learn aspects important to local fairies such as the food chain and web, the transition of seasons, life cycle and growth patterns of animals, plants and fungi, nutrient cycles, growing seasons, from their parents or the group's Tatiana. Reading is also an activity adored by fairies due to it peaking their imagination, making them a highly literate race.   Fairies are curious in general and adore trying new things, and they are not afraid of being wrong. Often they tend have little patience though, so they are not the best suited for conducting long and tedious research which has made it hard for most fairy territories to adopt a compulsory formal education system or to attend those in cities and villages.   Magic Use   Using magic is as natural to fairies as breathing and they use various forms of it in daily life. As very instinctual beings, sorcery is very commonly used by fairies for various purposes. Producing fairy dust provides them decent protection, effective hunting, or playing tricks on other beings, not to mention leaving some on their belongings makes moving things and chores much easier.   Many groups within fairies have unique forms of sorcery on top of the magic available to the species as a whole. Titania possess an exceptional high amount of magic power and have the ability to heal the wounds of who they care about, mimic the effect of protection spells or pacify aggression. The Leanan Sidhe have the ability to inspire artistic expression in others and draw power from the emotional response from excellent works of art.   Fairies have an intuitive knack for learning spells, and many enjoy the process as much as the results. While nature magic is one of the most commonly used schools, fairies have used spells from every category. The species good connection with many nature spirits has lead to many adept fairy summoners as well. Increasing interest in technology based magic has also led to more fairies who are aware of and use artifices.     Kinship   Most fairies relate to each other more based on how well they treat each other as opposed to blood ties. Partially this is due to their promiscuous society making paternity particularly rather difficult to determine. The primary bond is the mother-child bond, and just like a mother provides loving care and sustenance, the whole community raises each other's children by sharing food and their favorite games to play.   Most fairy communities have no real marriage ceremony at all. Couples meet and hook up as there's never been any taboo against sex before marriage. A couple may move in with each other and if the Titania sees this and approves, that's how the village knows that the relationship is serious. The emotional bond between two soulmates is the closest substitute for marriage but doesn't mean sexual exclusivity like with most races.     Transportation   The natural mode of transportation of fairy is personal flight via their wings. Young pixies often compensate for their small size by hitching rides on creatures of various sizes such as dragonflies, beetles, mice, birds, dogs to get somewhere quickly or hitch a ride on seeds dispersed by the wind. This continues with their adult sizes, riding larger animals like horses, camelids, cattle, etc.   For multiple or when carrying cargo, adult sized fairies have improved upon the designs of carts and vehicle design through the ages. Tinkering with these models have led to many fairies using manual vehicles like bicycles, quadracycles, and scooters for these purposes. The rediscovery of electromagnetic induction and working with the electric motor led to more advanced and convenient modes of transportation such as motorcycles, and electric automobiles in larger cities.   Medical Treatment   Most fairies are taught general first aid to treat minor ailments as their healing factor takes care of the rest. For injuries or illnesses that are too much for this healing ability, physicians mainly take a holistic approach that they strives to find the cause of disease by understanding the body, mind, and spirit of the person. Common procedures that include bonesetting, dental, surgical removal of foreign objects, and microbiotia therapy to deal with what their healing factor can not.     Manufacturing   Although they don't have a distaste toward advanced technology, fairy societies very rarely craft complex tools. Aside from sometimes making simple hand tools out of common raw materials, and occasionally making rudimentary clothes and accessories, fairies see little reason to create complex mechanisms and think it's just easier use magic to solve most of their problems.   However, they are almost all fascinated by inventions of other races, particularly humanoids. It's not uncommon for fairies to rummage through a hauflin's belongings, trying to find new and exciting items to fiddle with in hopes of discovering its intended use, usually with mixed results for both parties involved.


Antiquity   Fairies have been around since the appearance of fay lifeforms yet their origins are said to be a hundred-thousand things. The spirits of the dead, brought back to haunt the living. The first laugh of the first child, shattered into thousands of pieces. Descendants of an early humanoid fey species like elves, dwarves, and gnomes. Outcast angels or devils. Fairies themselves don’t worry too much about where they came from, though. They have lived in the woodlands and wilderness around civilizations for as long as anyone can remember, separate from organized life. Fairies have generally avoided the conflict and growing empires of other races at the time.   Ghulat Wars   With the invasion of the Shaytan and the creation of demons, fairies took a more avoidant role in he conflict. They pretty much retreated every time the enemy came, with only a few skirmishes they participated in.   Modernity   With the destruction of near every environment and ecosystem from the many Ghul Wars, the fairies of Kaf couldn't stand to see the dying planet, wiped out peoples and just the whole world going to crap. Maybe out of an atonement for every faction's involvement or a chance to save a world from the brink of destruction, fairies everywhere began efforts to restore the environments of Kaf.   A large territory known as the Fairy Kingdom was set up and spread around the great forests to encourage other forest dwelling species to support the growth of forests. Fairies all over learned to commune to nature, understand the natural cycles, the life cycles of local animals and plants in order to properly maintain the ecologically balance of their own habitats. Some fairies moved from the forested areas to understand and restore other biomes of the world like grasslands, wetlands, and semiarid deserts.   It was to the point where other beings thought that Fairies spring forth from nature itself. While not exactly the case many fairies did develop innate affinities to aspects of nature, giving them an important niche to maintain the natural balance. In the era of globalization, the kingdom gradually dissolved as the United Sapient Species came to fill the role. Today many cultural occupations in fairy society revolve around maintenance of an aspect of nature and many ecological activist groups were founded by fairies.

Historical Figures

Fairy Queen Titania:   Fairy Queen Mab:

Interspecies Relations and Assumptions

Despite their size, fairies are capable of and unashamedly practice mating with similar sized or larger beings and are biologically compatible with humanoid races such as humans, most other fay, etc. Children of these unions are either phenotypically fairies or a look like a member of the other race but their mannerisms, intelligence, and natural perceptions as they grow up may be seen as "eccentric" outside of the fairy community. They may also have an explainable charm that captivates other beings regardless of sexual orientation.     Fairies tend to like the company of Dryads, as they are naturally comfortable around trees and they and are always eager to learn about various plant life. A similar connection also exists made with Elementals, many pacts are made with them for summoner fairies and it is common for them to have relationships as well.   Fairies also get along quite well with homins thanks to their mutual protection of trees, the two races often live in different parts of the same tree, come together to share the same food at meal times, and even couple and mate.   Fairies also tend to have friendly relations with other fey were they live like Merfolk. Harpies and Lamia tend to be friendly though they can become especially interested in the male fairies when they are in the mood to mate. Beyond that, they often share a respect for natural systems on some level and will often preserve an ecosystem.
Scientific Name
Sidhe Ludens
Papillion, Demoiselle, Peri
500 to 2000 years
Conservation Status
Least Concern
Average Height
adult: 1 - 1.3 m (3'3" - 4'4") sprite: 2 - 7 cm (1-3 inches)
Average Weight
adult: 18 - 36 kg (40 - 80) sprite: 56 - 170 g (2- 6 oz)
Average Physique
Lithe and Slender
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Fairy skin color range from lightest peach to darkest brown, or they can have green complexions from the lightest mint to darkest forest green.
Related Ethnicities
Notable Fairies   Faylinn

Cover image: by Jonathan Thompson
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26 Feb, 2022 03:10

Wow, a great article. Lots of great detail. I love the magnetite information. Very cool.

Happiness is "the exercise of vital powers, along lines of excellence, in a life affording them scope,"
27 Feb, 2022 21:18

Thanks for kind words. When I read about how animals navigate magnetic fields, I'd thought that would be a cool feature to include.

27 Feb, 2022 22:30

I never thought about that animal navigation. There is an energy type Magnetism that I have in my world and I bet that would be a cool to interfere with that navigation. Thanks.

Happiness is "the exercise of vital powers, along lines of excellence, in a life affording them scope,"