Swanmays were intelligent rangers (or druids) that could take the form of swans, mostly for mobility purposes. In humanoid form, they resembled beautiful, scantily clad women. The swan form gave some advantages in combat, but mainly improved communication with natural beings. As swanmays became more experienced, they could charm people, and speak with speak with animals, as well as with plants. The most experienced swanmays could charm monsters and even gain a high resistance to cold iron, which applied to both forms.
In swan form, the creature took reduced damage against cold iron and had higher resistance to magical spells. In this form, they attacked with flying leaps, buffeting their wings, and biting. In human form, they fought in light armor, and attacked with swords and daggers at close range, and bows at long range.
Such creatures were part of a secret order that wished to protect the wilderness from evil. Only good-willed females were permitted to join the order, and must have had history in protecting the wild. The order had additional requirements for recruits, such as being able to speak Sylvan and the ability to speak with animals. As well as meeting these requirements, an initiate must have performed a great deed for another swanmay before being accepted into the order. When they were officially a part of the order, they accepted a feathered token that allowed them to change forms. The token could also be a signet ring or a feathered garment.
Swanmays rarely traveled outside a specific area, as they preferred living in sororities near rivers, lakes, and forests teeming with wildlife. They got on well with like-minded forest dwellers, such as dryads and and wood elves.
The first swanmay was a human ranger named Fionnghuala. Fionnghuala gave her life defending King Oberon of the Seelie Court from the Queen of Air and Darkness. In reward for her selfless bravery and sacrifice, Oberon raised her from the dead and made her a demigod, while his wife Titania offered her the magic white feather that transformed her into a part-fey being and made her into a swanmay.
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- Vince Garcia (March 1990). “The Folk of the Faerie Kingdom”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Dragon #155 (TSR, Inc.), p. 38.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 334. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 James Wyatt, Darrin Drader, Christopher Perkins (October 2003). Book of Exalted Deeds. (TSR, Inc), pp. 76–77. ISBN 0-7869-3136-1.
- ↑ David "Zeb" Cook, et al. (1989). Monstrous Compendium Volume Two. (TSR, Inc). ISBN 0-8803-8753-X.
- ↑ Gary Gygax (August 1983). Monster Manual II 1st edition. (TSR, Inc), pp. 116–117. ISBN 0-88038-031-4.
- ↑ Ray Winninger (September 1995). Giantcraft. Edited by Karen S. Boomgarden. (TSR, Inc.), p. 52. ISBN 0-7869-0163-2.
- ↑ Doug Stewart (June 1993). Monstrous Manual. (TSR, Inc), p. 230. ISBN 1-5607-6619-0.
- ↑ Carl Sargent (May 1992). Monster Mythology. (TSR, Inc), p. 122. ISBN 1-5607-6362-0.
- ↑ Ed Greenwood and Doug Stewart (1997). Prayers from the Faithful. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 118. ISBN 0-7869-0682-0.
Aranea • Coyotlwere • Hengeyokai • Jackalwere • Selkie • Shifter • Wolfwere