The Pydrus Elves (/ˈpīdro͞os/)
The Pydrus elves are one of three major tribes living on The Elven Isles. They make their home on the southwestern side of the main island, and make their living as masters of the elements. The elves maintain ancient elemental arts of magic, preserved through tradition. A larger percentage of the Pydrus elves are capable mages than most other ethnicities, besides the other elven tribes, which also specialize in their own traditional arts. The Pydrus elves survive as fishermen and builders. Their mastery of the elements allows them to quickly and easily move through most terrain, and efficiently clear ground for expansion. Due to the nature of the Elven Isles thin veil with other planes of existence, the Pydrus are more frequently experienced warriors than would be typical for a population. Their villages are accosted by creatures infused with elemental powers frequently, if not excessively so. Prevailing wisdom among the people is to never assume that an animal or plant one sees is harmless, and to always tread carefully through the rainforests, and to outright avoid night-time travel alone. The Pydrus value their magical abilities highly, and the differences between elemental disciplines and specialties shape many of the cultural lines that are drawn in their society. Political power, fame, and even who one is encouraged to love are all influenced by the culture's infatuation with furthering their magical arts.
Pydrus elves often wear clothing with colors and designs that depict their elemental specialty. Pydrus elves that are not mages often choose to dress in this way, even if they are not skilled in magic. While the Elven Isles, like most of Ulterra, are temperate year-round, the Pydrus fashion is to design clothing with several removable or re-attachable layers, as their culture deals most frequently with elemental effects which can create cold or much warmer conditions at times. The ideal beautiful Pydrus elf would be slender and graceful, with a confident stride and visible musculature (when weather allows). Magical ability also enters into the consideration of beauty for the Pydrus, and being able to form feats of magic while maintaining one's composure and grace is a very glamourous trait. In fact, the culture of effortless seeming magic has some toxic side-effects which can discourage individuals for whom magic does not come as easily from pursuing the development of their talent.
There are two prevailing customs of relationship ideals. There are some Pydrus who believe that one's relationship prospects should be chosen based on elemental inclination. The reasoning is that if a child is raised by two parents (and their extended families) who are adept at an art, the child will grow up to become an even more skilled and powerful practitioner, by virtue of easy access to teaching. There are others who believe that it is snobbish and detrimental to their arts to only interbreed with those who have the same abilities. After all, most Pydrus mages who have a talent for elemental manipulation are able to manipulate all of the elements at their disposal, sticking to one only because specialization tends to be valued over versatility. The reasoning for relations with other specializations is that it serves to improve diversity, and is also largely rooted in a desire for the freedom to be with whomever one wishes, regardless of their magical ability.