The Elvin Matriarchy
The Gray Elves aren’t thrilled about being joined at the top of civility, knowledge, culture, and power by the Illumian upstarts, but the Illumians are so similar to them in many ways that the two civilizations can’t help but integrate into each other’s societies. The Illumians control the civilized world to a degree the elves never dreamed of — okay, never seriously thought possible, and the Elves are a bit resentful of being overshadowed. Many feel that the younger races ought to be eternally grateful for the elves’ sacrifices in driving the Zern out of this half of the continent. In fact, the short lived ones don’t remember those horrors even occurring. On the other hand, there are now orders of magnitude more master artists, bards, wizards, philosophers, historians, and seekers of lore — that is, people interesting enough to be worth speaking to. This makes up for a lot.
Gray elves admire Dwarven craftsmanship but rarely talk with the dwarfs themselves. When they do, they find that their aesthetic tastes differ but that they can work together well even if they don’t find each other fun or charming. They look down on their Wood elf relations as uneducated and barbaric, and have a similar attitude towards the Mongrelfolk. They have long trade relations with the gnomes, though the gnome’s actions over the years has been considered troubling, to say the least, and they are not truly trusted. Gray elves respect the Killoren and are happy to work with them to preserve and defend nature, though the Killoren often think that the elves say all the right things but could be doing more.