Feyblight Condition in Erisdaire | World Anvil


It's been four years, and I wish I have more to show for my time here. Elves have long lives, and it seems even their diseases take their time killing the victim. Whatever poetic name they bestow upon it, this disease is simply a blight on the body which needs to be purged. I should have known the instant I saw their reaction to my resolve to seek a cure... I mistook it for the poise common to elven highborn, when I should have understood it to be the uneasy acceptance of an unkind truth-
— Fragments from a healer's journal
  Feyblight is a notorious disease which affects elves and their descendants, and is mostly unknown to other cultures on Erisdaire. For the consternation of elvenkind, the disease has plenty of information on how it progresses and what is unsuccessful in curing it - but little to no knowledge has been collected of the cause or any possible cure. Most who have studied the feyblight have come around to the belief the source of the affliction is not a physical malady, but a wound in the soul of the person who contracts it. There are many skeptics, often from other cultures who do not have the danger of contracting the disease, yet there is no denying there is a certain poetry to the term elves have come to use to describe it: "the Fading Soul".


Those who become afflicted with feyblight do not necessarily have an obvious sign during the early stages of the disease. Most cases will begin with the victim displaying lethargic habits, and sensitivity to strong light and sounds. There will, additionally, be a loss of appetite and trouble digesting solid food. As the victim's condition deteriorates due to a lack of nourishment and exercise, a dull ache is usually reported in the muscles and joints which also makes it difficult to sleep. The last notable symptom common across reported cases of feyblight is a greenish or yellowed complexion of the skin around the eyes. Once all of these symptoms have been cited, there is only one additional thing which will define the illness as feyblight without fail: the inability to cure the disease through natural or magical efforts.


-consulted with others who have attempted to cure the blight, only to be informed the usual herbs have only alleviated the pain or assisted with the digestion. However, as with all cases, it has been a temporary respite from the problems. I intend to press on to a more radical effort, beseeching the Gods for intervention.
— Fragments from a healer's journal
Contracting feyblight is a terrifying prospect for those of elven descent, since there is no known cure. Treatments exist, but they largely are simply a case of treating the symptoms to allow the victim to have a more comfortable life through the course of the disease. Simple herbal remedies are insufficient as the disease passes the early stages, requiring more complex medicinal aid simply to avoid feeling the pain. The final stages of feyblight have a significantly more difficult time being treated, as pain and discomfort become severe enough to require magical aid.

There is no known cure for the feyblight, as there has been no medicine developed which has done more than alleviate the symptoms. Magical aid with enough power manages to stop the progression of the disease in the victim, but once the aid's duration has ended the disease resumes its consumption of the body. Even the drastic step of seeking a form of divine intervention has not been successful, as either the Gods do not intervene or it becomes a temporary respite - the feyblight returns and begins its progression anew. Since this is the case, it is rare for any elf to seek a cure - they merely accept their inevitable fate and try to leave behind something positive to remember them by.

Some time ago, the elves dwelling the Kymeos Reaches in the Faeweald claimed to have a cure for 'the Fading Soul', and offer it freely with no requested payment. Apothecaries and alchemists who studied the vials of the cure discovered it was little more than goat's milk laced with nightshade or wolfsbane. The Kymean elves were not very pleased to be confronted with evidence, responding with a sudden violence uncharacteristic for elves. Once word spread wide enough, they dispersed into the Faeweald's depths and opted to find another place to dwell. Since their disappearance, no other "cure" has emerged yet sometimes the distinctive white vials have turned up in the keeping of elves dying from feyblight.

Cultural Reception

-have been at last asked to leave the enclave. Politely, but very firmly, to the point I now have an escort whose function is to ensure I 'don't get lost'. Ten years of work to fail to find a cure, or even a cause, but that's not the worst of it. The elves confiscated my research notes before issuing their - request. I am unfortunately returning to the Empire with nothing to show for a decade of my life. My time here has made me ever more aware of my short life and to spend it like this-
— Fragments from a healer's journal
  Feyblight is a taboo to discuss openly in elven areas, if only because the cause is not understood and it is only suspected to be non-transmissible. It is known to not be contagious in the traditional sense, but this does not alleviate any uneasiness around those afflicted with the disease. Those undergoing treatment for the early stages are encouraged by cultural pressure to keep it from being known, and victims with an advanced case are often confined to their homes until death claims them. Those dying from the disease are not returned to the earth in the usual elven tradition, but rather are given a special arrangement. It begins with "burial by flame", where the ashes are collected afterwards. An artist is contracted to create a work of art - be it on canvas, a woodcut, or shaped clay. Once the object meets the satisfaction of the family, some of the ashes are mixed with pigments and a medium for a paint which is used to highlight aspects of the art. In this way, the deceased is allowed to reclaim an anchor to their soul which otherwise would have "faded away".
Chronic, Acquired
Affected Species


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Master Moondare
Laure Yates
4 Jul, 2021 13:02

Loads of original details in this article. A great read. :)