When I came ere long the war troop bold were watching and waking all: with burning brands and torches borne, they showed me my sorrowful way. -Havesmál, Olive Bray translation
The Guardians of the North, as the Aesin Sidhe are known, are a proud warrior race with honour and vigor. Born of the battle dreams of Scandinavia, their blood runs as cold as their icy home, with the Aesin having little pity or remorse for those beneath them, typically the commoners. Relating to this, they see being in mortal flesh as the result of an ancient curse placed upon them by the Fates, whom they worship. Following the old Norse Pagan traditions has given this House a special connection to nature; indeed, conversing with the creatures of the forest comes easily to all members of this House, regardless of arts. Perhaps due to their cold relationship with vassals, this House lies on the Unseelie side of things.
The earliest event in Aesin history is Vengence Night. The climax of a civil war in the Aesin House, it only ended as the leader of the Seelie faction, Ingirun, cut out her heart in the sorrow of the deaths of her forces, and tossed it into the sky, to match up with the Red Star, the Eye of Balor. AS her heart exploded into a flash of chimerical light, she fell towards her brother Rigall, the leader of the Unseelie faction, who already lay dead. Ingirun's lover, Joachim, caught her before she hit the ground, and looked up to the sky to see the Eye of Balor had vanished. As the air lay silent and thick with the smell of fresh-spilled blood, a voice spoke in the dark: "The Ancients are gone!" The survivors turned to the sound, to witness the Norns Urd, Verdandi, and Skuld standing upon a balcony extended from one of the fortresses' towers. Urd's words hung in the air, until her sister Verdandi continued: "Past and present have collided." From the balcony's shadows stepped Skuld, finishing the statement to the Aesin kin: "The future awaits, young ones. Choose one now. Use wisdom in your choice. The paths of sorrow lie ahead. Make the journey a joyful one." Though the crowd was silent, one sweet female voice stepped forward. "I choose. I claim my family's throne." It belonged to Ingirun and Rigall's younger sister, Ragnelf. No one disputed her claim, simply because no one had the energy to fight amongst themselves anymore. Climbing the balcony, she looked out upon the dead. She turned her attention to the dead, and began a graceful speech: "The war is over. What you see here is the result of the atrocities committed in an act of vengance and despair. I, who knew of my brother's betrayl, stayed neutral throughout the war. Does this make me less guilty of the events transpiring? No, it makes me even guiltier. I watched as a great injustice was committed, not just to the followers of my sister, but also to those who did not know and were not able to act. My wounds are as large as yours. But they must heal. It will take time, but we will prevail. Our restoration begins now. As is my right, I hereby disband the Aesin war order. We must change with the times, and so we will lay the foundation for a new era. From now and to eternity we will be known as House Aesin, the northern guardians. We will act as one, be as one. We are family and we will never again war among ourselves. We shall dedicate ourselves to the true battle--against the Jotunns--and all who speak of us will call us living legends!"
Being so closely tied to Paganism, the Aesin first fought, then calmed the mortals during the Age of Iron. They withdrew for a period of time, returning when the Nords began their worship of the Pagan gods. The Aesin returned, walking among the mortals as Divine folk. They influenced the Viking raids and taught the Vikings some of their secrets. However, The Shattering came for them when their kingdoms finally caved in and converted to Christianity. While most Aesin returned to the Summer Lands known as Alfheim (known to other kith as Arcadia), a select few stayed behind to protect those who still believed. When the final withdrawl order came, however, the last of them fled with the others.
The Aesin were mostly quiet during the period before the Resurgence. Sitting in the dark mountains of Alfheim, bathed in snow, sat Castle Aesin. The trees surrounding the stronghold acted as both a home and a training ground. They bided their time until their services were needed again. Some recall vague memories of a war, a young Ailil Sidhe leading an uprising, forcing the Aesin to besige them in a cavern, defeating them with ease. It is thought that this was the excuse for banishing the other Houses to Midgard (Earth) for the first time.
The Eye of Balor appeared, causing concern enough for the house to dispatch a band of warriors to investigate. Said warriors never returned, prompting a battle on the borders of Alfheim. This battle was likely with the reborn Jotunns (known in Celtic lands as Formorians), and called the House back to Midgard. Somewhere along the silver path, however, the Aesin were attacked, chaos erupted, and the House leader, Queen Ragnelf, disappeared. Most Aesin returned to a foreign land, far from their homes, and to find that commoners were now ruling themselves. Needless to say, the return has been a less than ideal time for them.
Attitudes and Lifestyles
Aesin Sidhe view their mortal bodies as clothing. They despise being encapsulated in flesh and can't seem to grasp why everyone else has it too. Sure, they protect the soul from Banality, but the flesh is a curse from the Dreaming for the slaughter on Vengance Night, isn't it? As was the way when they were first here on Earth, Aesin detest Christianity. No Aesin has been reborn in a Christian mortal. In fact, they find the faith so repugnant that an Aesin must make a Willpower roll (difficulty 6), or withdraw from the scene when confronted with one of this faith. Aesin dislike mortals and commoners. That a commoner could EVER think to place him or herself on a throne is ludicrious. The mere thought of rule on the part of a commoner should be smashed. Everything has a place, and commoners is firmly OFF the throne.
House Aesin places a good emphasis on family, with men and women each having specific roles to fill. Though a woman's place is seen as in the home, she is by no means a submissive Sidhe. Indeed, women are revered as the givers of life and the rearers of the young. They instill in every Childling discipline, virtue, and responsibility. They also take part in combating the Jotunns, and they govern others as well. As well as taking on the role of the Mother, a woman may also be a Volva, a sort of high priestess, one of a sisterhood with a talent for prophecy and ancient magicks. Volva, after completing their trial for membership, are given a wooden staff that they carry everywhere. A select few women have even managed to become Skalds, a position usually reserve for men. Considering Aesin worships the Norns, and all three of the Norns are women, that should speak enough of their thoughts on the fairer sex.
Men usually take on roles as Hunters and Warriors, the former using their skills to track and root out Jotunns and lost kinian alike, the latter going through extensive training to be skilled in the art of war. The man's place is outside the home, to not only fight to protect his family, but to provide for it. They are skilled in battle, and have egos to match. Remember to take every war story they tell with a grain of salt. Thirteen Aesin men take on the role of Berserker. The reason behind having so few of them is because with the immense power of being one, comes with the curse of being one. They don ancient, magical armour that protects them from all weapon-based attacks and allows them to fight beyond their normal means. However, once set forth, a Berserker cannot be stopped unless dead or victorious. It is where passion overwhelms duty to the point where one is blind. Eventually, all Berserkers go insane. Skalds, mostly men, are a band of poets, musicians, and tale-spinners whose purpose in life is to not only keep the lore of the House, but also to inspire confidence before battles. Getting one to attend your feast can make you quite legendary.
While not outlawed, one will encounter some resistance if s/he selects an occupation outside of his/her gender. There are great women warriors, however, and as long as one proves themselves (and can withstand some teasing), they will eventually fall into place.
Unlike most Sidhe, Aesin Sidhe dislike politics and manipulation. Why spend time lying when we can get what we want by telling the truth, they ask? Aesin take great stock in their words, considering them as binding as oaths. Those who DO resort to intrigue, however, do so in the shadows, away from the disapproving eye of her brethren. If discovered, she will seldom be trusted.
The Fior-Righ, an important rite of passage among Aesin, occurs when a Childling becomes a Wilder. If the participant is too weak to pass, they die. The test is given around age nine or ten, when a group of Childlings wake up together in a forest, sans tools or weapons. With only their minds and each other to survive, they must last a week while avoiding all the dangers lurking around every corner. After the week is up, a group of Hunters is dispatched to find the kids, who are then given the Saining Ceremony by the High Lord of House Aesin, High Lord Magnhildr. They then take the Oath of Virtues, sealing in their status as a true Aesin Wilder. Dying in this process is not seen as a dishonour, more that they gave their best till the end.
All Aesin have a Nordic look about them, meaning blonde hair and blue eyes are common here. Men are strong, tall, robust, and have long hair that flows down their back and torso. Their strong muscles are there to protect their family, and their gleaming eyes show their pride in it. They are serious in what they do, even moreso than the women. They wear fur and other hearty clothing, making going into battle an ease. Women are strong as well, typically with long hair, as with the men. They favour elabourate clothing, usually embroidered with runes along the arms. In this house, Jewelry and weapons measure status; Amethyst, Silver, Gold, and Bronze are all common materials, with Mothers typically having the most jewelry.
Though some have adapted to city life, most Aesin feel most comfortable among nature, typically forests and mountains.
Boon and Ban
As with all Houses, Aesin has a Boon and a Ban that come with allegiance.
Nature's Touch - More than most other changelings, members of House Aesin have a strong connection to nature. As lords of man and animal alike, Aesin changelings have the ability to speak with forest animals (e.g., elk, squirrel, bear, deer, owls, etc.). Make an Intelligence + Empathy roll against your Banality + 3 each time your character wishes to understand an animal. You make speak for the number of minutes equal to your successes.
Emphatic Blindness - While still caring for their subjects, changelings belonging to House Aesin have a tendency to have a master-slave relationship with them. Nevertheless, they feel obligated to protect their loyal servants, and occasionally they might feel something else for them. In the end, however, Aesin keep their Deep Dreamin flaw, although the Mists upon reentry in Midgard have weakened it. They recieve a +3 difficulty on all Social rolls involving anyone other than nobles. There is only one other exception. For some reason the dreaming neglects this curse when dealing with the family that belongs to the mortal body who hosts the newly arrived Sidhe.
The Oath of Virtues
Taken after the Fior-Righ, a Wilder swearing this oath is considered an adult by all other members of the Aesin House, with full privileges. The swearer gains 2 dots to allocate among the abilities s/he has for his/her occupation (Warrior, Volva, etc). In the event the oath is broken s/he loses all points in the abilities where the dots were placed. To symbolize belonging to House Aesin, the wilder recieves a shield bearing the blazon of the house.
My eternal soul now lies with House Aesin. I swear by the forests and mountains of my home that I will uphold the traditions and customs of House Aesin. Knowing I reach safety, I seek shelter beneath the wings of the owl. If my oath is broken, may the Dreaming strip me of all privileges and never let me forget who I was and what I have become.
The Nine Virtues
Aesin Sidhe live by a certain code of honour that all are expected to uphold. The one time the Aesin strayed from the Nine Virtues, it ended in the War of Courts and Vengance Night.The Aesin follow them so strongly that they override any ruling of either the Seelie or Unseelie courts. From the Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Houses: The Second Coming:
Courage Always stand for what you believe in, even if you are alone. Injustice must never go unpunished or unopposed. Do whatever you deem necessary, but do not remain silent.
Truth Never do or say anything that causes you to be dishonest. If you act dishonestly or lie for some reason, prepare to take the consequences.
Honor Honor is different for all of us, but it is akin to an emotion. It is knowing that you did the right, decent thing and that you treat your subjects in a fashion they deserve. Be humble, but never let others take anything for granted.
Fidelity Once honorably oath sworn, you must never break that bond. Remain loyal to your master, but also see to it that your subjects are loyal to you. If they are not, you must break the bond, as they are unworthy of it. You will pay the penalty for this, but better that than tied by oath to those who are unworthy or who are monsters.
Discipline Discipline is a pattern of thinking and acting that defines who you are. Though we constantly strive for discipline, it is hard to master, for there are many different kinds. Warriors might have physical discipline, while scholars seek intellectual mastery. Never scoff at another's chosen form of discipline merely because it differs from your own.
Hospitality We are one family and should help each other whenever we can. Treat others with kindness and respect. After all, there might come a time when you need hospitality yourself. We grand those who ask it formal hospitality of three days and 10 miles. During that time we extend food, shelter, the right of entertainment and our promise of nonaggression, even to our most dire enemies. We expect them to comport themselves honorably in return. At the end of that time, those we have hosted are required to leave (unless it is impossible due to weather, illness, or immediate danger) and travel at least 10 miles away from our holding. Failure to do so may result in grave punishment or even a battle to the death.
Industry You must work long and hard if you wish to rise in rank. You must earn your title; we won't give it to you simply because of your birth. Our leaders are those who work hardest and accomplish the most. We of House Aesin always get the job done--one way or another.
Self-Reliance Do what you can for yourself. Only when a task involves things you are incapable of doing should you ask for help. Do what you can for others, but teach them to rely more on themselves than on you.
Perseverance If at first you do not succeed, try things another way. Never do anything that is not worth your time and effort. Doing such things only gains you credit for being stupid. Each of us has at least one special talent. Use it, perfect it!
The Court Tenets
Though House Aesin is by majority Unseelie, members of both courts exist. Aesin realize that they are dual-natured creatures, and thus embrace both sides. They are, after all, one family. However, being that they adhere to the House code moreso than the Seelie and Unseelie Codes, they modify the Summer and Winter courts to their worldview a bit.
House Aesin views the Shadow Court as chaotic and threatening. Because the Shadow Court works against both Seelie and Unseelie to see to it that there is a permanent winter, House Aesin wishes to remove them, as they deny the Changelings' dual nature. They are seen as maniacs and fools.
From the Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Houses: The Second Coming:
Change is Good. Change can be both terrifying and joyful, as we have learned from history. It is a natural force that must never cease lest things become stagnant. Reverting back to old ways is not necessarily wrong. It is still a change.
Glamour is Free. There will always be a supply of Glamour to find. It does not matter if it is the seductive dar or pure, warm Glamour. This substance is what sustains us, and to refuse it is to deny yourself.
Honor Is a Lie. Claiming honor withour believing in it is disgraceful. Honor is not court or kith bound, and unless it is looked upon with respect and honesty, it becomes nothing more than a lie.
Passion before Duty. There is little to say on the part of the codex. Our duty is our passion.
Death before Dishonor. Dying in the name of House Aesin is honorable. Living as a coward is not.
Love Conquers All. Yes, but the Seelie have tried to define love into one single concept. Love is Unseelie. It is a force of change and is different to all of us.
Beauty is Life. Ask yourself what beauty is for you, then answer this: Would I give up my life to protect what I find most beautiful?
Never Forget a Debt. Forgetfulness can be catastrophic. If you do not remember your debts, you might end up in a situation where you have no allies, for you have dishonored friends by failing to repay them what you owe. Only the foolish or dishonorable choose this path.
Views on the Escheat
The Escheat is a constitution of sorts for Changelings, a set of rights for Kithian and Mortal alike to keep everything in balance and peace. The Escheat also keeps Kithian safe from mortals' prying eyes, thus preserving the Dreaming. For more information on this, see The Escheat or the Changeling: The Dreaming Corebook, Second Edition, page 79.
From the Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Houses: The Second Coming:
Right of Demesne Until now this law has been unnecessary. All of the Dreaming's children knew their rightful place, but with the commoner rebellion we have to implement this part of the Escheat officially.
Right to Dream House Aesin forbids you to waste precious Glamour on feeble creatures such as mortals. They are supposed to supply us with Glamour, not the other way around. If a mortal cannot produce the nourishment that you need, he is expendable, but you must protect those who can.
Right of Ignorance For many centuries, we have kept this law for the good of our people. With the return of the Jotunns, we are no longer sure that we can afford to. It is imperative that no mortals know whom to serve in the coming war.
Right of Rescue Save a life, earn a boon.
Right of Safe Haven Freeholds are sacred--on this we agree. Right now we can afford to keep the war outside freeholds, but that may change soon.
Right of Life Even the Dreaming must understand how foolish this law is. We are fighting an eternal war here, and there will be death on both sides. Killing outside of war is anathema, and punishment must come to perpetrators. You would do well to remember that we only implement this law when it comes to faerie life.
Relations with Other Houses, Kiths, and Prodigals
From the Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Houses: The Second Coming:
Fae more skilled in manipulation are hard to find. It is as if they have it in their blood to dupe others and always come out on top. Though disgusting to us, this house has much influence among the other Unseelie. They are, according to rumour, the leaders of the Shadow Court, and we must somehow destroy their mad plan. Never trust them, and keep them close so you can watch the children of the canny dragon. If you let them fool you, they will use you and those you care for in ways you wouldn't dare to dream of. It may be that Ailil must be destroyed, but if we could cure them of their manipulative ways, they could be a force of great use against the true enemy.
House Balor is an adversary on all levels. These children of the Jotunns have managed to fool the other Kithian by claiming relationship with us. The truth is that they stole the blood from captive Sidhe during the War of Trees, and when they saw that their defeat came closer, they merged to form this house. We want nothing to do with them. We see through the serpents' lies and wait for them to show their true colors to the others. When they have done that, we will strike back with vengeance for all the misert they have caused. If both you and the Dreaming forgive me, I must say that Vengeance Night will look like child's play in comparison.
Of all the Seelie houses, we have had the most conflicts with Beaumayn. Once true nobles, they embraced the chill of iron and joined the crusades. Unlike Liam, which refused to accept punishment for its crimes, House Beaumayn served time in Alfheim's dark prisons. As they are allies to our friends in House Varich, we must try to accept Beaumayn members and forgive them for their actions. But as things stand right now, we barely tolerate them.
This is a house made up of warriors with great integrity. Unfortunately, not only their integrity is large--their mouths are about the same size. They cannot be trusted with secrets, but otherwise they are great friends and precious lovers. They come from Hibernia and other Celtic lands, and seeing them in action fills our hearts with hope. The Jotunns had better prepare for heavy causalities. Did you mention poison? No, they don't deal with such things! If you are so certain, you could ask them. With their penchant for blurting out everything they know, I'm sure they'd tell you.
This honorable house consists of flawed Sidhe. They are the true creators of the Dreaming and take as much pride as we in what they do. Creations of House Dougal are among the most beautiful things you can ever imagine. We will not survive the Dream War unless we can convince them to supply us with what we need. This would not be a hard task if it were not for the fact that they are the puppets of House Gwydion. Where the falcon flies. the Dougals go. Break the link. Make them our allies.
This is a house too important to ignore. Nobles of Eiluned have access to forgotten lore and hidden secrets that we need at a time like this. Such an alliance will not be cheap, but we must succeed. Find something valuable to them and trade with them, but never let them close to you. Never reveal any important secret to them, unless you wish others to know. As they sell secrets and knowledge to you, they do the same for others.
If they were as fierce in battle as they are in love, the Dark Ones would truly have a problem handling members of Fiona. If you ever fall in love with one of them, prepare to have your heart broken The Fiona Sidhe have a talent for falling in love and then going from one person to the next. On many occasions, they even go to mortals or commoners. Prejudice aside, they are in truth very stubborn and not easily frightened by danger, and for that they have my respect. Let them know of the danger that lies ahead and see to it that they will understand what will happen with those they love if we lose.
Summer lords is the name commonly used for these fae. Their strength and integrity make them worthy allies, and we could surely use them if they could put aside their prejudice against Unseelie fae. Some say that they once worked for the old Ancient Tyr, who, according to stories, was a true follower of Justice, but I must doubt that. Ancients never feared change, and this is something House Gwydion fears to excess. Their manipulative skills can almost stand in comparison with those of House Ailil. When dealing with them you are advised to trust your instincts rather than their words.
Think of Leanhaun and allow yourself to weep. These brave souls work hard for our continued survival. They spend their time musing creative mortals so that the worlds can heal. House Leanhaun dreams of a better world where there is no need for musing and where we all can walk as gods once more. If there is anything you can help these noble souls with--do it. They are truly worthy of our assistance.
A Liam who dares to set a foot in our holdings without first begging formal hospitality will regret it the secon he enters. House Aesin has nothing but contempt for these traitors. Their cooperation with the commoners in the Accordance War did not come as a surprise to us; they have nothing more to lose. It is a shame, however, that they show no signs of remorse; if they would do that, we could forgive them for their crimes. After all, we are true nobles, and being magnanimous comes with the territory.
There are no other "commoner nobles" in our eyes. Once we treated them poorly, but when they decided to remain and protect the subjects still in Midgard, this left our eyes clouded with teas and our hearts broken. Their nobility amazed us, and Ragnelf pronounced House Scathach to be nobles. It is an honor to make a friend in this house. We have had plenty of disputes with the Scathach Sidhe who returned to Alfheim with us. In honesty, we see those Scathach as nothing more than repulsive half-Sidhe-half-mortals, not like their kin who remained in the Autumn World. Nevertheless, they are members of a house declared noble and must be treated as such.
These nobles are proud allies of House Aesin and the sovereign rulers of the Inanimae. During out time in Alfheim, we worked closely together, and it is our hope that we can do so now as well. This gathering of nobles consists of strong and valiant warriors who work for change but, just as we do, wish to be in control of the changes. The only dispute we have with them is that they withdrew into Alfheim so early during the Shattering. This move makes us believe that they care more for their own safety than those whom we must protect.
Gallain and Others
We have complex relationships with and thoughts concerning those not of the Great Houses. Some we find totally alien to our customs, while others who are called alien or Gallain we think of as being as common as boggans.
Once the servants of the Dark Dream, these fae fell with their masters during the final battle in the Dreaming. As punishment, the Ancients imprisioned them and banned them from all the silver paths. Recent activities in Midgard caused their release, and now we fear that they do the Jotunn's biddings here. The Norns have assured us that some of them wish to join us in our war against darkness to redeem past crimes. We must find those who are willing to switch sides and let them prove their trustworthiness to us. The rest of them who fight on the dark side are fair targets. We will find them and stop them by whatever means necessary.
Once we respected them, but when they did not stop Rigall and chose his side, they became our adversaries. They were the reason that the events that ended with Vengeance Night unfolded, and we will never forgive them for that, even if it was the Norns' will. Unfortunately, thanks to the prophecy we know that our destinies have a link with those of the Ancients. Unless they return, Ragnarök will never take place, and this will cause the world to remain stagnant. Find them and shepherd them back to Midgard--by luring them to war if necessary. This time they do not have Rigall's forces to help them. Only when they arrive will the final battle begin.
They are not to blame for losing their way. The fault lies with the five houses exiled earlier. If they had not allowed the formation of the now dissolved (thankfully) Parliament of Dreams, the commoners would still know their true place in society. Although we need them in the war against the Jotunns, we cannot allow their crimes agains our superiority to go unpunished. Find the leaders of their resistance groups and eliminate them. Show them that there is no room for disobedient commoners in this world. When we have brought peace about and made them aware of the Dark Dream, they will thank us for coming back. Until then, commoners will hate and scorn us as oppressors. That consequence comes with being saviors of those who are ignorant of the need for salvation.
None of use is sure on why these fae are called Gallain rather than accorded the same status as any other commoner. They are as much commoners as the Satyrs or Pooka, and we rule them accordingly. We value the freedom of spirit that fuels the Clurichuan, the wisdom and connection with the Dreaming that the Ghille-Dhu have. We can spend hours staring at the Selkies' alien beauty and listening to their songs and tales of the sea. But we do not think they should rule any more than the other commoners do.
Although we feel close to them and highly respect them, we acknowledge that Inanimae are under House Varich's jurisdiction. Unless an Inanimae has committed a crime, we leave them for the Varich fae.
Twisted, cunning creatures born of the worst dreams conceivable, Jotunns are so cruel that we cannot comprehend what goes on inside their minds. Their recent regroupings in the Dreaming made us return to Midgard. Rumours of direct encounters with them in battle have recently come to us but are still unconfirmed. We have dispatched messengers to investigate this matter. It is our wish to wipe them out, but we cannot do that if we want a new mythic age to arise. According to the old prophecy, they will fight the Ancients during Ragnarök. Therefore, we must try to keep them at bay and push them back as much as we can while we try to get the Ancients to return to us.
They are the original inhabitants of Concordia. Unfortunately, we have yet to meet one. Maybe we can become allies?
Other Kithian name most of the following creatures among the Prodigals, or those who fell or turned away from us to become something other than fae. We have our own thoughts on each of these but also include some, such as animals, that most other fae ignore.
Just like mortals, animals constantly evolve, making them equally in need of our guidance. Imagine standing proud alongside the great and powerful bear as the two of you battle the Dark Dream, or think of the little squirrel that sneaks into enemy camps and spies on your behalf. Love them and become one with the animals' surroundings. Unfortunately, mortals fail to realize the greatness of nature and continue to destroy it. Just do what you can to ease the animals' pain. Maybe one day we can harvest dreams from animals as well. It is worth trying as a last resort.
Never deal with the dead unless you have someone who has experience with them accompanying you. Listen to them only if they are honored Ancestors.
Mortals are both our subjects and foes. History has taught us that they cannot be trusted; they will only turn on us. They need strict guidance from us, and that is what we will give them when the time is right. In the meantime, we use them as cattle, harvesting their dreams as we can. This is their true purpose for living. As you known, there might still be some Kinian out there. Our hunters are doing their best to find them and bring them back into the fold. There are those among them who make the commoners tremble with fear. These mortals, known as Dauntains and Autumn People, oppose us. We need to put an end to their rebellion, but caution is wise when dealing with them. More than one faerie has fallen beneath their Banality-infested touches.
We have little knowledge of these creatures. When our paths crossed in ancient days, we met with some of them living in our forests. We closed a nonaggression pact with them. Unfortunately, when the Shattering came they saw a chance to break the agreement. I wonder whether they are still around. We have a score to settle with them.
For a murder committed, the Ancients forced one of their own to watch as his two sons fought each other until one was dead. The winning son transformed into a wolf, escaped, and spawned his own kin before the other Ancients caught up with him and chained him. His kin remain today. Once they were our allies, but because of an ancient mistake, we are now enemies. The Fenrir, as we call them, are a powerful gathering of warriors. Unlike our other allies, the Fianna, these shape changers value our Norse traditions.
We of House Aesin have had little dealings with these powerful mortals. They are an intriguing threat, and that is why we lure them into dark forests and perform experiments on them.
As with all Noble Houses, the Aesin have a few members among them that shine above the others, either for their leadership or their infamy.
The following is from Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Houses: The Second Coming:
Ragnelf is a calm and gentle woman who has seen her share of tragedies. After Ingirun died, the throne of Aesin went to her. Since then, she has created a strong house out of the ashes of a war-torn family. Her kindness is widely known among members of House Aesin, and although she is well versed in most Arts, she realized a long time ago that her mind was her greatest weapon. During our recent travel, from Alfheim to Midgard, she vanished without a trace, and the sadness she left us with is hard to bear.
High Lord Magnhildr
When Ragnelf vanished, this former member of the Council of Virtues took the throne and now acts as ruler of House Aesin. Unlike her predecessor, Magnhildr lacks compassion. Some even call her "Iron Face" because of her stern looks. If her mind is firmly set on something, she will accept no further discussions. Although she is a strong leader, most members of our house fear that she will lead us to a new downfall.
The passion that this Unseelie Brondolf has is unmatched by most changelings. When he goes into battle, there are few who can withstand his powerful attacks. As a wilder in his prime years, he has his share of admirers, but ever since he took over the warrior training, he has become solemn and sad. With the recent leaving of Magnhildr, he was elevated to sit in the Council of Virtues, where he is the youngest member ever. We Volvas have seen in our visions that he is the one who will act as mediator between the ancients and us.
This baron was once a promising wilder on the verge of transcending into a grump, but the possession of mortal flesh became too much for him to handle. When commoners recently ambushed one of the first Aesin freeholds, he turned on us. House Aesin believes that the impurity of mortal flesh caused him to identify with the weaker commoner Kithian. If apprehended he will stand trial and face judgement so that this matter can be put to rest. Still, most members of the house pity him, and the childlings have begun to make rhymes about "Bjorn, the commoner lover."
Kin by Association: Urd, Verdandi, and Skuld
From the Changeling: The Dreaming - Book of Lost Dreams: The Second Coming:
"We know of them as the Norns. They are incredibly powerful beings, older than the oldest Ancient. They carry our blood, or so others say, and from time to time they visit us without warning. Urd, the keeper of the past, appears as a young maiden whose looks enchant every man on sight. Verdandi, weaver of the present, comes to us in all her motherly pride. She is the embodiment of a wilder Aesin. The oldest of the sisters, the crone, Skuld, is the one who holds the secrets of the future. When the Norns come, show your respect, for their agenda is incomprehensible to us. Usually they live in the Kingdom of Dán, and from their temple they weave our future. Will they act or will they stand aside when the final battle comes?