The Ochae'nafod (oʊ.tʃeɪ nʌfɑ:d) are one of the three races of Nafod. They are incarnated with the souls of nymphs, which grants them the ability to manipulate the element of Life. Shape-shifting abilities came from the influence of the Nymph soul on the first generations of Nafod, but the ability became innate and passed down genetically. They are scattered across Aserra, primarily inhabiting wild areas and divided into tribes and clans. Each tribe can shape-shift into a species of local wildlife within a specific size range.

Over the generations, subtle traits of their bonded species influenced their culture and appearance. Some social aspects of their species play a role in their individual culture and personalities--for example, tribes bonded to a species that mates for life may be more inclined to monogamous relationships, or a tribe bonded to a prey species may be more wary and shy than those bonded to a large predator species. The physical traits that appear in Ochae'nafod tribes are not overtly animalistic, but their hair and eye colors often correspond with fur and eye color of their bonded animal species and their facial structure may be vaguely reminiscent of the species. The average height and muscular density of individuals of a tribe are strongly influenced by their bonded species. Those bonded to small animals are typically short and those bonded to large species are often tall.

Conspicuous animal features rarely appear except in hybrids who have limited control of their shape-shifting, such as a tail or ears of the animal. Some tribes may frequently maintain shifted traits through shape-shifting abilities, like horns or antlers, tails or ears, as a simple cultural preference amongst themselves.

List of Ochae'nafod Tribes


The Ochae'nafod natural form is similar to the Idayn and their original form was almost indistinguishable, but generations of shape-shifting locked to specific animal species has influenced the modern Ochae'nafod to appear in a vast array of size, facial features, and coloration. One thing that is typical of the Nafod races is a tendency toward absolute beauty with symmetrical, well-defined and balanced facial features.

Many Ochae'nafod possess hearing superior to that of humans, mostly in thanks to their long, tapered ears. However, tribes bound to certain species also gain some of their superior skills. For example, those bonded to the Lupus or Ursus tribes have very acute senses of smell. Those bonded to nocturnal species have better night vision. Typically, it is beneficial traits that have become permanent in each Ochae'nafod tribe, but some less beneficial traits also became permanent--such as many bird-bonded tribes have a weakened sense of smell.


The shape-shifting ability of the Ochae'nafod originally came from the influence of their Nymph souls. Amongst fae, Nymphs are renowned for their shape-shifting abilities, which serve as a means to conceal themselves or escape danger. For the Ochae'nafod, this began as a preference for shape-shifting into animals to escape danger and obscure their existence from humans that may threaten their environment. The original Nafod had near limitless potential for shape-shifting, but it was a challenge to convincingly mimic different species on a whim. To remedy this, they set to study the species. Their magic gave them a means to soothe and comfort animals, and so they charmed a specific species they wanted to transform into to give them a thorough study and form an empathic bond to understand their mentality. Armed with such understanding, these progenitor Ochae'nafod were able to better transform into an individual species. Within one or two more generations, their shape-shifting became "locked" to this species and their empathic understanding was passed down.

For modern Ochae'nafod, shape-shifting is as natural breathing. Even their infants will shape-shift when startled, though at that age, the transformation is complete and they shift into a baby of their bonded species at a comparable level of development or at least size. This early shape-shifting will only last for as long as the child feels it is in danger, then they will revert to their natural form. Throughout infancy and early childhood, they explore their shape-shifting abilities unconsciously and consciously, gradually gaining more control and understanding. Adult Ochae'nafod can shift to any degree between their natural form and their animal form, even manifesting or altering certain traits. For example, some of the tribes bonded to horned or antlered animals manifest horns for show on their typical Nafod form. In cold weather, some Nafod opt to shift from bare skin to a fur coat for warmth. Others commonly manifest tails or ears for non-verbal communication with their peers.

There is a limit to how far the Ochae'nafod can compress or expand their actual size, leaving many species too small and a few too large. The smallest bonded species include larger species of rabbits & hares, rodents, wildcats, and flighted birds. In general, ten pounds (5kg) is considered the smallest, though the Ochae'nafod have more leeway when it comes to birds, as the bulk of feathers can make them appear larger than they actually are--thus giving Ochae'nafod more flexibility. The largest species bonded are nearly one ton (454kg), primarily large ruminants like elk, moose, elands, equines, boar, and large antelope at this end of the spectrum. Species such elephants, giraffes, large buffalo & cattle, rhinoceros, and hippopotamus are too large for the Ochae'nafod.

Hybridization between Dra'nafod and other Ochae'nafod tribes can result in individuals who are essentially "reset" to the less limited shape-shifting talents of the original Nafod. An Ochae'nafod and Dra'nafod hybrid is able to shape-shift not only into any appropriately sized plant or animal they choose, but also be able to mimic people, though they would encounter the same issue of imperfect imitation that their earliest ancestors had. Between Ochae'nafod tribes, the resulting shape-shifting ability of the hybridized individual is dependent on how closely related their parents' bonded species are. For example, species that are within the same genus and able to reproduce in nature might have a child who can shape-shift into a hybrid of their two species, such as a liger or a mule. For species that are within the same family (such as two species of antelope that are very distantly related), the offspring will not have a hybridized form, but would be able to freely mimic similar species. In these cases, the individual may opt to undergo a ceremony to bond with a specific species as their ancestors did. Those hybridized between extremely different species, such as a carnivore and a ruminant or mammal and bird, will have the unlimited shape-shifting talent of their ancestors, but might be more inclined to shift into animals rather than trying Dra'nafod shape-shifting.

Half-Ochae'nafod with parents of other races (such as human or Idayn) inherit their shape-shifting from their Ochae'nafod parent, but they are rarely as skilled as their parent, often having no intermediate forms between their natural form and their animal form. Sometimes, animal features may become "stuck" after early attempts at intentional shifting--such as retaining a tail or ears. Sometimes, these traits may eventually revert, but others are stuck with them for the rest of their lives.


The Ochae'nafod are a broadly varied race in physical traits, though their progenitors were quite uniform. The original Nafod were similar physically to the Idayn, standing at a height comparable to the average of humans with slender, almost androgynous builds. In the generations following their initial bonding to specific species, the tribes underwent rapid changes in appearance. Those bonded to small species became smaller themselves whole those bonded to species larger than themselves likewise became larger. Some tribes are slender and lithe, while others are more inclined to carry fat or build muscle. The smallest tribes may be the size of a child fully grown, between 4' and 5' (122-152cm) while the tallest can exceed 6'5" (196cm).

Size Group Animal's Approx. Weight Resulting height in comparison to human average
Extra-Small ~10-30lbs (5-14kg) ~4'-4'5" (122-135cm)
Small ~30-100lbs (14-45kg) ~4'6"-5' (137-152cm)
Average ~100-200lbs (45-91kg) 5'-6' (152-183cm)
Large ~200-250 (91-113kg) 6'-6'3" (183-191cm)
Extra-Large 250lbs+ (113kg+) 6'3"-7' (183-213cm)

There are some consistencies through all Ochae'nafod yet, such as the long, tapered ears that mark all the elemental races. Though, these ears can be influenced by their animal too--at least for the mammal-bound species. Their ears can be slightly rounded, have a sharper angle up or down, or be significantly shortened, but never to the point of being mistaken for human ears. Ochae'nafod facial features are practically always able to be considered beautiful with symmetrical, well-defined features, but these features are still influenced by their bonded animal. While there are no overt animal traits like a pig's nose or a split lip, there is usually a subtle resemblance to their bonded species in their facial structure and the placement of features. Also, unlike other elemental races that spread across the world, Nafod quickly took on traits to appear similar to humans living in the same region. This subtle mimicry affected their inherited traits as much as the intentional mimicry of their bonded species.

This mimicry of local humans also extended to skin color and hair texture. Ochae'nafod that spread to South Thiskel quickly took on the darker complexions and tightly curled hair texture of their human neighbors. For other elemental races, changes to skin color resulted either from generations of adaptation to an environment or interbreeding with the local human population. While there is occasional infusions of human blood into Ochae'nafod tribes, their rapid adaptation was primarily in thanks to their shape-shifting talents. As such, the skin color of Ochae'nafod will be similar to humans indigenous to the region and suited to the amount of sun exposure for the latitude.

Hair and eye color among the Ochae'nafod are influenced by their bonded species, however. Their hair color usually mimics the primary color of their bonded species' coat or feathers for mammal or avian-bound tribes. However, the few reptile-bound tribes typically have black hair. Their eye color likewise matches their bonded species' eye color, but beyond iris colors, some tribes also adapt to pupil shape, along with other ocular traits like improved night vision, expanded range of visible spectrum, or improved distance viewing. Though, if their bonded species has detriments to their vision, like limited color range, are naturally near or far sighted, or are extremely sensitive to light, the Ochae'nafod avoid mimicking such traits so they do not become a trait of their tribe.

In a handful of tribes, minor traits of their animal become fixed on their natural form. For example, the Lynx tribes display tufts of black hair on the tips of their ears, the Hydropotes tribe bonded to water deer have small tusks coming from their upper jaw and the some tribes bonded to pig species have small tusks from the bottom jaw. A few tribes bonded to species with small horns display permanent horns. Carnivore-bonded tribes often have prominent and pointed canine teeth.


The Ochae'nafod have a lifespan of around a thousand years. They mature at the same rate as humans until the age of twenty-five, at which point apparent aging is paused until the individual reaches the final fifty or so years of their natural life. at which point they continue to age at the same rate as a human until death. Their lifespans are not affected by their bonded species' lifespans.

Throughout their long adult life, their animal form generally appears as an individual in the prime of life. As an Ochae'nafod enters their final decade, their animal form will begin to show signs of aging. Elderly Ochae'nafod often begin to have trouble shape-shifting in their later years. This can either manifest as losing the ability to shift to intermediary forms or being less able to fully transform. Occasionally, elder Ochae'nafod have become stuck in an animal form, unable to return to their Nafod form. The Ochae'nafod highly value their elders and support them through the end of their lives.


As many other elemental races, the Ochae'nafod are slow to reproduce. With their long lifespans and secretive nature, keeping their population low is crucial. To this end, female Ochae'nafod are only fertile for one year out of every ten. Most children are planned, and on average, Ochae'nafod women bear only one or two children throughout their lives. The rate of reproduction is another area of Ochae'nafod life that is not influenced by their bonded species, like lifespan. Nor are they more likely have multiple births than humans or other races.

When it comes to romantic relationships, the mating strategies of their bonded species does play a role in how approach relationships. Tribes bound to a species that mates for life are more likely to be monogamous while those bonded to solitary species are more likely to have short-term romances or flings. Others may practice a harem sort of arrangement.

Ochae'nafod live in familial clans, so when it comes to finding a partner, they must look to other clans, whether this is for a long-term spouse or "hook-up." Clans provide communal support for child-rearing. In clans where monogamy is expected, an outside spouse (regardless of gender) will be adopted into their partner's clan, and both of them are primary caretakers of any children they have. In clans where romantic relationships are short-term, children are raised communally by their mother's family and the father may not even know their child.

Ochae'nafod are capable of reproducing with most other races, and between tribes, no matter how different their bonded species are. Half-Ochae'nafod with a non-Nafod parent have limitations to their shape-shifting ability, but if they are born to an Ochae'nafod parent, they will inherit the ability for Life Elementalism and be incarnated with a Nymph soul. Ochae'nafod born between different tribes have varying outcomes when it comes to shape-shifting abilities, depending on the bonded species of their parents. Between an Ochae'nafod and Dra'nafod, the offspring will be an unbound shapeshifter like the original Nafod.

Ochae'nafod cannot reproduce with their bonded animal species and sex with animals is considered immoral, even in animal form. They may have a deep affection for their bonded species, but this affection is a chaste affection, as for a child or beloved pet.


The diet of Ochae'nafod tribes is strongly influenced by their bonded species, though they don't necessarily eat exactly like that animal. Most tribes bonded to herbivores are vegetarian, eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and other gatherable plant-based foods. Tribes bonded to carnivores often make meat a primary food source in their diets, supplemented by fruits and vegetables. They also often hunt in animal form, making weapons irrelevant and fitting into their environment. Kills are brought back to the tribe to be prepared. Tribes bonded to omnivorous species eat diets not too unlike humans. They also prepare and cook food, but they are primarily hunter-gatherers (or just gatherers) and very rarely participate in farming beyond cultivating some local plants to produce more food.

In animal form, Ochae'nafod can eat like their bonded species--grazing on grass or eating raw meat, but shifting back into their normal form can cause digestive distress if this food isn't processed by then. Because of the deep bond they have with their species, a full shift includes internal organs, such as a second stomach for ruminants, or shortened colon and stronger stomach acid for carnivores. However, even for tribes bonded to carrion-eaters, eating carrion can cause severe illness as they lack the gut flora that makes it possible to compensate for the bacteria and microorganisms in decaying meat.


Ochae'nafod cultures are as varied as they are, but there are some overarching aspects that define Ochae'nafod culturally. Firstly, as the creation of the goddess Entra, Ochae'nafod are charged with maintaining and protecting the habitat in which they live. They never take more than they need from their environment or make drastic changes. This is part of the reason why they resist farming. Some tribes cultivate local food sources, but never to the point of upsetting the balance of local flora and fauna.

They are also generally suspicious of humans that enter their environment as, if left unchecked, humans could become excessively destructive. Fears of clear-cutting, over-hunting, and over-harvesting are forefront in the minds of Ochae'nafod when they deal with humans. If their habitat is threatened, Ochae'nafod have ways of thwarting the incursion. Many more docile tribes will rely on magical means to discourage trespassers, but the more aggressive tribes can turn to physical violence as a deterrent. Most Ochae'nafod keep their settlements hidden, either by remoteness or relying on the landscape. However, when they live near Idayn or other elemental races, they may combine their settlements or at least be more conspicuous.

Tribes bound to prey animals or small animals tend to be more wary and rely on subterfuge. Tribes bonded to predators and especially large animals are alternately more bold and defensive.

Gender and Relationships

Though Ochae'nafod have a broad spectrum of relationship styles, they all maintain an egalitarian culture. Nearly all social hierarchies are age-based, with the eldest individuals regarded as the heads of the clan. These individuals are also the progenitors of most members of the clan--aside from anyone married into or adopted into the clan. As with many elemental races, they trace heritage through the maternal line as elementalism is passed from mother to child. For some tribes, individuals may not even know their father as they are raised by their mother and her clan.

Depending on the mating style of their bonded species, some Ochae'nafod tribes are more inclined to monogamous, life-long bonds. In these cultures, marriages are typically between members of different clans within the same tribe (Lupus and Lupus, for example)--though sometimes they bring in outsiders. Between the pair, they may opt to live with one clan or the other, or visit in between clans if the journey is not too arduous. This is determined by the wishes of the couple, regardless of gender. Arranged marriages do not occur within Ochae'nafod culture.

Other tribes are more flexible in their romantic entanglements. Those bonded to solitary species or species that don't form pair bonds are more inclined towards short-term romances and flings. They often lose interest in one another after the novelty has worn off. In some of these cultures, couples may stay together to raise a child and drift apart after the child reaches maturity, or they may just entangle long enough to achieve pregnancy and the woman will return to her family to raise the child with her kin.

A few tribes, such as the Leo and some bound to ruminants, maintain harems, but such arrangements are still egalitarian, even if a harem is led by a man. Women freely choose to join this arrangement and are free to leave if their needs are not met. The children born to these clans often carry a dual surname with their father's name identifying their clan and mother's name identifying their parentage.


As the race was created by Entra, the Ochae'nafod are devoted in service to the Goddess of Life. For all the variety of tribes, their religion is is universal. The duties expected of the Ochae'nafod are preserving natural balance and protecting the environment they live in from external threats--such as the destructive tendencies of many humans and introduction of harmful species.

As Ochae'nafod clans tend to be small, there are no religious leaders, only the more experienced elders to guide younger members in spiritual practices. This includes, on a personal level, communing with the Nymph soul within them, grounding themselves to their environment, and learning mastery of their talents as shape-shifters and elementalists.

Their tasks in their environment, as per Entra's instruction, is primarily to observe. There are many natural processes which can be destructive, but these are generally allowed to happen as it is a part of the natural balance. Disease, blight, drought, fires, and floods happen from time to time, and the Ochae'nafod must not interfere overly in the process of these events. They have the ability to heal and restore, but these skills are used sparingly because of the risk of unbalancing their environment.

Human (primarily) incursion is what Ochae'nafod are most concerned about. If humans are overly aggressive with logging, harvesting, hunting, fishing, or other destructive activities, the Ochae'nafod find ways to discourage further damage. In some places, this has resulted in outright conflict--such as the Ardir War in Kalesten. Humans have also brought species to regions they do not belong in, and when those species become invasive and threaten local flora and fauna, the Nafod are responsible for culling this species.


Life Elementalism is one of the three more intangible forms of elementalism, along with Light and Dark elementalism. It manipulates the various energies present in living things, such as mana and qi. This power, however, is not directly gained from the Nymph soul of the Nafod, but rather an ability granted by Entra "bundled" along with the soul. As such, this ability is still inherited from the mother like other forms of elementalism.

While Life Elementalism manipulates life energies, it does not grant the power of sorcery or other magics to convert that energy into other effects. Instead, it gives Nafod the ability to essentially move that energy. This is applied most commonly in healing and cultivation by encouraging the energies to accumulate at the site of a wound or lending strength to recover from sickness, or making a plant grow more rapidly or produce more foliage or flowers.

Conversely, Nafod can draw the energies out of living things. This would be most commonly applied in forestry by sapping the energy from an invasive weed or pest to kill it completely. The most highly advanced Nafod can target such troublesome species within a certain range of themselves to kill all individual plants or creatures. While such a skill can threaten humans, Nafod only use it in the defense of their own lives. However, they can also sap the pool of magical energies from a sorcerer, witch, or other magic user to keep them from using their magic against the Nafod.


The Ochae'nafod generally maintain good relations with the other elemental races. Depending on where they live, they may be neighbors to Zaedyn, Brech'mar, Asath, or any of the Idayn races. Their relationships with the Idayn races are so good that in some cases intermarriage is not uncommon. The Fayl'Idayn particularly have an ancestry of mixed Idayn and Nafod heritage and they are both ruled by Entra. Relationships with neighboring humans can have a number of outcomes, but in general, Ochae'nafod approach human interactions with caution until the true intentions of humans are proven. Kuzo are regarded as a danger, but only some of the most aggressive Ochae'nafod will make an effort to uproot kuzo clans when they find them. Others are content to remain hidden from them.

Relations between Ochae'nafod and Dra'nafod are often cordial, but they keep to themselves for the most part. Both are wary of intermarriage or interbreeding because of the potential unlimited shape-shifting skill of a child born between their two peoples. Most Ochae'nafod prefer to keep romantic entanglements between their own tribe members for similar reasons. The bonded species of a tribe plays a small role in their relationship with other tribes. Those bonded to an herbivore and common prey animal are discomforted by those bonded to a predator of that animal. The tribes are still united in their common purpose and will readily come together to help each other in their duties to the environment they live in.