Tieflings in Bretonia
Tieflings are born with infernal energy in their veins. They are descended from the mortal races, and the races of the plane known as hell. The exact details of the origins of Tieflings in the world are unknown to the mortal races. It is believed that they are the result of mortal and infernal pairing, and sometimes, this lineage is several generations back, other times it is direct. Many of the Tieflings in the world are different from one another in their origins and their appearance.
The physical traits of a tiefling vary in extremity and feature from person to person. Some have red skin, horns, and a tail, others look entirely human save for the red color of their irises. It is believed to depend on the Tiefling’s parentage, and the proximity of the coupling between mortal and infernal. Direct products of a human and devilish or demonic coupling typically appear to have more demonic features than those tieflings who arise several generations later.
It does skip generations from time to time, but there is much debate about that among scholarly circles. Typically, if a child is born a tiefling from human parents, it is a general assumption or accusation that the woman was unfaithful. This is not always true, but that does not stop it from being assumed.
There was once rumored to be an ancient Empire, in the desert of Parthia, that made a contract with Asmodeus, Lord of the Nine, and were turned into Tieflings from his essence. And perhaps there is some truth to the tale, and the appearance of Tieflings are from those who can trace their bloodline back to this ancient empire.
Or perhaps, all the myths are true. And the origin of Tieflings is as varied as their appearance.
Tieflings can often be treated cruelly by human societies. At best they are treated as a minority, and given respect out of fear of some hellish retribution. They are often abandoned by their mortal parents, which leads a lot of them to be raised by others, or even by themselves.
Those raised by the mortal parents are typically raised in isolation, far from the judgement of others. It is rare that one finds a wholly welcoming community. For this reason many tieflings when grown can be reclusive, when allowed to be. People may stare or gawk a little at a new tiefling, but when they get to know them and are made comfortable, they are often quite accepting.
Winning a tiefling’s trust can be difficult due to how the majority of people treat them – with distrust, easy accusations, and ignorant fear. When they do allow themselves to trust someone, when they make friends, they often cling to those friends like rare treasures, and care about them deeply.
The official stance of Verita on Tieflings, is that while they do not endorse the mating of any mortal race with the infernal, they do not consider the sins of the parent to be the sins of the child, and they recognize that Tieflings themselves are mortal, and capable of good. Therefore they are very welcoming of Tieflings in their assemblies, though not as welcoming to those who give them birth if it is proven or confessed that they had direct relations with a fiend.
Other religions hold no official stance on Tieflings, and tieflings themselves have no official religion or unified culture.
Most monarchs and governments do not care about Tieflings one way or the other, and treat them as any other racial minority within their kingdom. They are welcome to fulfill their role in society, and to benefit others, so long as they pay their taxes. Tieflings who violate the law often find the harshest of penalties brought against them.
Notable Tieflings in History
- Lerissa Venerable – A saint of the Verita who was considered the epitome of redemption. A thief in her younger years, she came to the Assembly when she was beaten and cast out, with nowhere else to go. Becoming a sister of the cloth she studied and then traveled, making a name for herself as a healer of many grievous ills, both physical and social. She is most famous for stopping a war between two violent princes of Vaticana by means of diplomacy, and the two became fast friends for the rest of their lives.
- Anakis Gravewalker – A tiefling whose name is feared as much as it is spoken. There is some question as to whether or not she actually lived, or was just the character in some tale, but according to the ballad, she single handedly killed an army of Orcs that raided her village. According to the story, she stole into their camp during the night, and using her magic to fool the orcs, made them quarrel with one another. The fighting lasted until morning, when only a handful of the once great host remained. Exhausted, they fell into a sleep, and Anakis’s dagger ensured they never woke.