The Cywir Clan are a clan of elves, one of nine that originated in Tarddiad. The nine elven clans lived together in harmony on Tarddiad, each having its unique place in elven society, specialising in a unique skill set, and offering unique contributions to elven civilisation. Clan Cywir specialised in hunting and preserved the ancestral lores of the elves as well as the shrines of elven spirits. Eventually, upon Seren's visit to Tarddiad, the Cywir elves became Serenist, although they did not flock to her as strongly as did elves of the other eight clans. They were noted for being staunchly traditionalist and less eager to accept change than the other clans.
When Seren brought the majority of the elves to Gielinor through the World Gate, the majority of Cywir clan elves refused to come with her, and remained on Tarddiad alongside some other elves who were unwilling or unable to leave. Unfortunately, these elves fell prey to a terrible affliction called the Sickness, caused by their deep love for and dependence upon Seren following her extension of elven lifespans. Falling prey to a strong craving for crystal, they started singing Tarddian crystals onto their bodies, which provided a temporary relief from the Sickness followed by an even stronger craving for more Tarddian crystals. Eventually, the craving for the crystals became too much for the Cywir elves, and they mutated into crystal shapeshifters.
A small minority of Cywir elves, however, did arrive on Gielinor with Seren through the World Gate, and were trapped on Gielinor following the loss of access to it. They were initially unaware of the Sickness that plagued their Tarddiad brethren, but eventually discovered it. These elves discovered that crystal shards, obtainable in Tirannwn after the shattering of Seren, could fend off the sickness and allow the elves to travel long distances far away from Isafdar without feeling its ill effects. Unfortunately a group of travelling Cywir elves were kidnapped, tortured, and experimented upon by Gregorovic, then a human madman afflicted with a physical illness and near to death, who sought a means of escaping death through discovery of the secret to the elves' long lifespans, all but one of whom were murdered by him. Led by Helwyr, Lord of Clan Cywir on Gielinor, the Cywir elves sought revenge against Gregorovic for his crimes against their brethren, and resolved to hunt him down and punish him for his actions.
With the discovery of The Heart of Gielinor, a powerful source of anima, as well as the reestablishment of travel to Tarddiad through the World Gate, the Cywir elves sought to claim The Heart for the elves in Seren's name, and harness its power to rescue their brethren on Tarddiad. However, The Heart was discovered by representatives of Zaros, Zamorak, and Sliske as well, all of whom sought to claim it and harness its power for their own respective leaders. Helwyr condemned the other faction leaders as creatures of darkness, and the Cywir elves went to battle in order to obtain control over it. Gregorovic, now an undead puppet of Sliske, had become the leader of the Sliskean faction.. Helwyr became the leader of the Serenist faction of The Heart, where he fights the other factions to this day.
The Cywir Clan was one of the clans that originated in Tarddiad, along with the other clans. The Cywir were hunters and maintainers of ancestral tradition. They all lived together in harmony, and met Seren when she came to their world. Seren loved the elves deeply, and was loved deeply by them in return. Seren taught the elves many new and useful things, including the great potential of crystals through the art of crystal singing, and through her assistance the elven clans prospered. Distraught by the relatively short lifespans of her elves, which was comparable to that of humans, Seren also extended their lifespans, with the consequence that the elves would become heavily dependent upon her, requiring her active presence to thrive.
The other eight clans flocked to Seren, but the Cywir was the only clan that did not flock to her as strongly, as an excerpt in the Dusty Tarddian Journal–authored by the Cywir elf Angof, a descendent of the famous elven mystic Ceidwad, during the time when Seren visited her homeworld–says that the clan was traditionalist and despised change. They began to handle the burdens that other clans were in charge of even though they did not have enough elves to deal with them. According to Seren, the Cywir clan kept the lores of the old elves and tended the shrines of elven spirits. The majority of elves of the Cywir clan remained on Tarddiad, while on Guthix's invitation, Seren left with the other eight clans through the World Gate to arrive on Gielinor.
Fall to the Sickness
After Seren left with the other eight elven clans, the elves of the Cywir clan were among the only elves left on Tarddiad and began to regret their decision. Like all the other elves, they were bound to Seren and as a result, many died due to her absence. They developed an awful condition known as The Sickness, inflicted upon them by their heavy dependence on Seren and need for her presence. The Sickness inflicted the elves of Tarddiad quite severely, and they began to search for relief from it.
The Cywir elves then found crystals that contained slivers of Seren's presence and used an alternate version of the Song of Creation to imbue the crystals onto them. Although they found it as a blessing at first as they could make themselves as they pleased, they found out that they had an endless hunger for those crystals. This changed their civilisation drastically, turning them from a traditional tight-knit society into groups of nomads in search for the crystals. Many of the Cywir fell to the insatiable craving of the crystals, becoming crazed for them. They eventually transformed into the crystal shapeshifters seen throughout Tarddiad as of the Sixth Age.
Angof saw what was happening to her people, and aimed to resist completely falling prey to the Sickness as her brethren did. Although she did become a crystal shapeshifter, she developed enough strength of resistance to the ever-present craving for crystals that she retained her coherence and remembrance of who she really was. She took upon herself the responsibility to watch out for her people, and to serve as a spokesperson on behalf of her people for any visiting travellers.
Hunt on Gielinor
Some elves of the Cywir clan did come to Gielinor with Seren from Tarddiad, arriving through the World Gate. They had intended to return to their homeworld, but at some point the World Gate was lost, and they were unable to do so. These elves were initially unaware of the Sickness that afflicted their Tarddiad brethren, but eventually discovered it and sought a cure. At the end of the Third Age, following the establishment of the Edicts of Guthix, Seren shattered herself into many crystal shards to ensure that she would remain with her elves, knowing their dependence upon her, rather than leave Gielinor. In the Fourth Age, led by Helwyr, elves of the Cywir clan scoured the forest of Tirannwn for crystal shards. These Cywir elves discovered that with crystal shards in hand, the elves could travel far outside of Isafdar without suffering the ill effects of The Sickness, and collected enough crystal shards to sustain their entire force. Although by this point the World Gate had been lost, the elves retained hope that they could some day return to their homeworld, with a reliable relief for the Sickness in hand, and rescue the forgotten elves of their clan from their plight.
Some Cywir elves travelled as far away as Senntisten, with crystal shards in hand, without suffering ill effects. Unfortunately, these elves were kidnapped by Gregorovic, a human madman afflicted with a terrible illness who was close to death. Gregorovic sought to discover the secret to long elven lifespans, which were in fact a gift from Seren, in order to avoid death and to gain a long life himself. He tortured the captured Cywir elves severely and performed various experiments on them. Most of the elves were murdered, and only one lone elf survived, returning to Helwyr to report what happened. Seeking revenge, Helwyr resolved to find Gregorovic and punish him for his misdeeds, fighting in the name of Seren. Afterwards Helwyr aimed to hunt down dark creatures, as his clan historically did, with a hope of eventually re-discovering a path for the Cywir elves to return to their families on Tarddiad.
Rediscovery at the restoration of Seren
At the end of the Fifth Age, the Mahjarrat Sliske slew Guthix with the Staff of Armadyl, a powerful Elder Artefact, thereby breaking the Edicts of Guthix. Just prior to his death, Guthix crowned an adventurer as the World Guardian, tasked with protecting the world from the wars of the gods. At the start of the Sixth Age, this adventurer came to aid the newly restored Prifddinas, which had become unstable due to the strong pull for the crystals from which the city was built to reunite with Seren. The eight elven clan leaders held a sacred conclave in the Tower of Voices to determine what to do, at which time it was decided that Seren should be restored. After agreeing to help, the adventurer went back in time, with the help of the Amserdrwys, to learn how to restore her. The Amserdrwys took the adventurer back to the Third Age, at the time when Guthix is about to establish his edicts to banish the gods from Gielinor. The adventurer explained the situation to Guthix, asking for help, and a heartbroken Guthix, who did not want to see Seren shattered, explains what is required: to gather the major shards of Seren, to find replacement crystal for the missing crystal shards, and to find an elf who knows the elven magic required to restore Seren to her proper form.
After finding the major shards of Seren, kept in safety by each of four pairs of related elven clans, the adventurer travelled to Tarddiad through the recently re-obtained World Gate to obtain crystal for restoring Seren. There, the adventurer met Angof, now in crystal shapeshifter form yet still cognisant of who she really is and still coherent, and discovered the fate of the Cywir elves on Tarddiad. Angof explained her resentment of the elves of Gielinor, for having neglected the elves of Tarddiad whilst believing them to be dead, as well as her love of Seren despite feeling betrayed by her for leaving Tarddiad. Knowing that the adventurer required Tarddian crystal, Angof offered a skilling-based alternative to the crystal shapeshifters' slaughter for obtaining them. With this crystal along with the major shards of Seren in hand, Lord Baxtorian and the eight elven clan leaders together sung Seren back into form. The adventurer then travelled to Freneskae, the homeworld of Seren and her brother Zaros, where with Zaros's guidance the adventurer successfully reforges Seren, and the two return to Gielinor together. Seren had observed that, while separating herself from her elves suddenly and completely had devastating consequences on the elves that remained on Tarddiad, gradually weaning the elves away from her presence allowed the elves to become more independent of Seren yet remain healthy and long-lived. Seren then resolved to shut herself away in the Tower of Voices, available to the adventurer and to the elven clan leaders and still providing the Voice of Seren, but otherwise remaining largely separate from the majority of the elves, to aid the elves in becoming more independent of her.
At the Heart of Gielinor
During the early Sixth Age, the Cywir elves on Gielinor discovered The Heart of Gielinor, a powerful source of anima beneath the Kharidian Desert. Helwyr hoped to claim The Heart for the elves in Seren's name. Aware that a means of returning to Tarddiad had recently been discovered, Helwyr hoped to use that energy as a power source for the restoration of his people on Tarddiad. The Heart was also discovered, however, by representatives of Zaros, Zamorak, and Sliske, who also hoped to claim The Heart for their respective leaders, whom Helwyr would have to fight to obtain control over it. Gregorovic, having struck a deal with Sliske to do as he asks in exchange for eternal life, and becoming an undead minion of Sliske as a result, became the leader of the Sliskean faction. His presence there struck within Helwyr a desire for vengeance, to avenge the death of his fallen brethren at Gregorovic's hands, giving an additional reason to fight. As Vindicta and Twin Furies were both creatures of darkness, Helwyr decided he would fight them as well. Helwyr became the leader of the Serenist faction of The Heart, on behalf of the elves and Seren.
Known Cywir elves
- Cywir is Welsh for faithful or loyal.
- The Cywir clan does not yet have a confirmed association colour or symbol.