Time and Tithe
The Tithe is a very important and sacred ceremony for each faery Court, it ensures the fealty of the Solitary Fae who live in their lands. For the Court of Air and Darkness, this is the Cradlelands, The Court-Upon-the-Sea holds Jewelhaven province, and The Firelights Court has Dunsmere in the south.
The Court monarch makes a sacrifice, either transforming a mortal into one of them or killing them. Often this mortal is someone valuable or intriguing to the fae: a poet, an artisan, one with the faery Sight.
This show of blood and power reminds the Solitaries the consequences of rebellion.
The Court holds their Tithe every seven years in turn (i.e. The Court of Air and Darkness one year, Firelights the next…) on holidays sacred to each Court.
For the Court of Air and Darkness, this is Samhain, for Firelights this is Beltane, and the Court-Upon-the-Sea is Twelfth Night.
The Solitary Fae – much more than the Court Fae claim – are facinated with mortals and their lives. Many will watch around the windows of inns and taverns and even homes, following their daily tribulations the way one would follow a novel series or a serial play.
They also become deeply offended by the seeming rejections of the mortals. Skeptics and scientists who attempt to disprove their existence is one of their greater sorrows and they take growing industry and urban sprawl as a personal slight.
They are much more friendly – and have a more tangible influence – with the Rovers of Dunsmere to the south who are far less industrious and leave a less permanent impression on the earth.
A House is a Home
Solitary Fae often gather in Houses, Clans of fae who share common interests. Examples include The House of Masks, The House of Music, The Equestrian House (for riders and centaurs alike), or The House of Magic. There are hundreds of Houses as small as 10 members and as popular as over two hundred.
Fae can join as many Houses as they like and are asked to make no Vows, but as the politics of alliances and enemies can be complex and dangerous, a faery must be careful of the company they keep.
Any House found conspiring against their monarch is put down very quickly and some fear Houses may not be permitted to form or meet in the future.