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Winterlings resembled 2‑foot-tall (0.61‑meter) elves with sharp features, white skin and hair, and light blue or violet eyes. They had butterfly-like wings that appeared frozen and broken into jagged points. They had no need for clothing even in the coldest temperatures, but some wore jewelry for ornamentation.
Winterlings were malicious and enjoyed playing potentially lethal pranks on travelers, such as putting out campfires and causing avalanches.
Winterlings were immune to the effects of the cold and could see even in very dim light. Despite the appearance of their wings, they were perfectly capable of flying. They were known to speak both the elven and fey languages.
Like most fey, winterlings had innate magical abilities. They could replicate the effects of the spells chill metal, fog cloud, gust of wind, quench, sleet storm, and warp wood three days a day each. Once per day, they could replicate ice storm.
Winterlings lived in small tribes in cold mountain and hill regions. Their habit of playing deadly tricks often meant that areas inhabited by winterlings were believed to be haunted by locals.