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- The Ageless: Faeries live for a very long time; the Unseelie King has lived for thousands of years, as have the Riders of Mannan. It's implied that faeries do age, but since the time in Faerie is messed up, they appear effectively ageless.
- Born of Heaven and Hell: They are the offspring of angels and demons, and they are said to have the cruelty of demons and the beauty of angels.
- Cannot Tell a Lie: It is physically impossible for faeries to tell a lie. This doesn't stop them from often skirting around the truth in order to manipulate events and get their way.
- Cold Iron: This is one of the fairies' weaknesses. Cold iron weakens them, so they cannot fight. If they're exposed to the cold iron longer, it causes them real pain. Half-fairies are weakened much less. It bothers them at most a little.
- Faerie Court: The Seelie Queen leads the Seelie Court, which projects benevolence and beauty despite being deceptive. She figures into the plot of the books, where she is capable of helping the heroes but they are often reluctant to do so because of her manipulative nature. The Unseelie King leads the Unseelie Court, which have a reputation for being the nastier of the two courts.
- The Fair Folk: What they are.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Faeries can mate with humans and give birth to children. The hybrids are for the most part human but have some kind of faerie trait.
- Land of Faerie: They live in this. They are the only Downworlder race who have a separate realm of their own.
- Our Fairies Are Different: The fairies are one of four known races of downworldlers and they're considered the strangest of them.
- They are considered the common descendants of angels and demons. In general, they are as beautiful as angels for that reason, but at the same time as evil as demons. However, the books also show less beautiful fairies, and only very few of them are really as vicious as demons.
- There are generally two groups of fairies. Some of them look very inhuman and have distinct features of animals and plants, almost always humanoid. The other group, the nobles among the fairies, look much more human-like. More like the third type (see above). They resemble typical elves, but often have horns, claws, wings, tails, or other animal features, and sometimes even plant characteristics. In some cases they look just like elves, except that they have unusual hair, skin or eye colors. In addition, they are also considered very pretty.
- They organize themselves in royal courts (Seelie and Unseelie), but most fairies move around alone, without belonging to a certain royal court. Etiquette and decency are very important to them.
- They are also known for their cruel sense of humor, and for being particularly insidious. Often, they offer a pact and their magic to a person, but later put it in. They cannot lie, but they formulate their words in such a way that there are loopholes. Because they can become hundreds of years old, they gain a lot of wisdom over time, as well as guile.
- They are physically very strong, and they also have sharp senses. In addition they have a magic, which is almost unique, and can be very powerful. They often use their magic to pretend to be human, but some humans still recognize they.
- They also have several weaknesses. Cold iron, rowan wood and salt weaken they. Likewise, someone can gain power over a fairy when he knows their true name.
- Fairies are slow to multiply, and so that their bloodlines do not weaken, they often exchange human children for their own weak children. For unknown reasons, the children receive magical powers in the fairy kingdom, and after a while they turn into fairies.
- Fairies can also have common children with humans. If this child grows up among humans, it differs only slightly from other humans, but still has some fairy features, such as pointed ears, or can detect magical illusions.
- Unlike full faeries, half-faeries can lie.
- As the half-fairy grows among fairies, she develops the same powers as other fairies. At the same time, she is much less affected by the weaknesses. Half-fairies, unlike pure fairies, can also lie.
- The child of a shadowhunter and a fairy is also a shadowhunter, albeit with fairy traits.
- Officially, most fairies are bisexual.
- For creatures with keen senses, such as vampires and werewolves, fairies smell like dead flowers.
- We ARE Struggling Together: Faeries spend as much time warring other beings as they are warring each other.
The Seelie Court
The queen of the Seelie Court. A faerie with a real talent for manipulation.
- The Beautiful Elite: Repeatedly described as a classic beauty.
- Enemy Mine: She briefly cooperates with Emma, Julian, and their friends during the skirmish at the Unseelie Court.
- How the Mighty Have Fallen: In Lord of Shadows, Emma notes that the Queen looks rather unkempt, although still beautiful, as the five years of the Cold Peace robbed her of her riches.
- Interspecies Romance: With Sebastian Morgenstern who is a Shadowhunter. Their union produces Ash, an Uneven Hybrid who has angelic, demonic, faerie, and human ancestry.
- Luke, You Are My Father: Queen of Air and Darkness reveals that not only is she Ash's mother, Kit is also descended from her, as his maternal ancestor, Auraline, is her daughter.
- Mama Bear:
- In Queen of Air and Darkness, she personally invades the Unseelie Court and threatens King Arawn to rescue Ash.
- Her vendetta against Arawn was started when he apparently executed their daughter, Auraline, who was supposed to succeed them as ruler of both Courts but rejected by Arawn because of her gender.
- No Name Given: Her name is never said in any of the series. She is always just referred to by her title. Justified as faerie names are sacred and can cause her disadvantages if publicly known.
A knight of the Seelie Court who is a trusted ally of the Seelie Queen. He is a half-faerie, so he is able to tell lies, but nobody outside of select few people know this.
- Cannot Tell a Lie. Subverted. Everybody thinks he can't lie like all other faeries, but Meliorn is actually only half faerie, meaning he is able to lie. This allows him to convince the Shadowhunters that the Seelie Court is on their side, when they are actually supporting Sebastian.
- Half-Human Hybrid: He is half faerie and half human.
- Interspecies Romance: With Isabelle Lightwood, a Shadowhunter. However, they break up soon after the romance is disclosed.
- Killed Off for Real: Courtesy of Alec.
- Trojan Horse: He is sent as ambassador of the faeries for the Clave because he is half-faerie and therefore can lie. Since the Clave regard him as full faerie, they expect him to always speak the truth. As a result, they are too late to realize that the Fair Folk are working with Sebastian and too late to stop Meliorn from taking Jocelyn and the Downworlder representatives hostage.
A lady of the Seelie Court. The mother of Helen and Mark Blackthorn.
- I Just Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Andrew genuinely fell in love with Nerissa and stayed in Faerieland with her out of free will. His brother Arthur refused to leave without him, so he got claimed by Celithe who tortured him. Nerissa tried to hide this from Arthur, but he eventually found out. Nerissa knew he would feel guilty about it, so she changed his memories and made him think that he was there against his will. After that he let him and Arthur escape, thinking Andrew would be happier in the Shadowhunter world.
- Interspecies Romance: With Andrew Blackthorn, a Shadowhunter. They even had two children together.
- Posthumous Character: Died before the events of The Dark Artifices.
Lady Nerissa's younger sister and aunt of Helen and Mark Blackthorn.
- Big Damn Heroes: Saves Emma, Julian, Mark, and Kieran just before Arawn's forces are about to close on them.
- Defector from Decadence: She has long been attempting to defect from the Seelie Court and its decadent Queen. Against the Queen's wishes, she has Emma and Julian take her and Fergus' place to attend the peace treaty between the Seelie and Unseelie Courts and participates in the fight against the Cohort and the Unseelie Court.
- The Medic: She works as a healer at the Seelie Court.
The Unseelie Court
The king of the Unseelie Court.
- Abusive Parents: Most notably to Kieran, but it's highly implied that, except for Erec, his other sons didn't get loving upbringing either, judging by how they think of their father.
- Asshole Victim: The only people who lament his death are the Riders.
- Archnemesis Dad: Virtually none of his children have any love for their father, only tolerating him because he is their king. The sole exception is Erec, who shares his father's sadistic tendencies.
- Hate Sink: Unlike the Queen of the Seelie Court, he has no redeeming qualities whatsoever. He killed his daughters, abused his sons, kidnapped and experimented on a young child, and refuses to cooperate with Shadowhunters.
- He-Man Woman Hater: He refused to allow Auraline to succeed him because she was female and made a policy to kill his children if they are female. Hence, all of his potential heirs are male.
- Killed Off for Real: He gets killed by his son Kieran with an elf-bolt.
- Offing the Offspring: Since his first daughter Auraline caused him so much trouble, he decided to have all his female children killed.
- Two-Faced: The right side of his face is that of a handsome young man. The left side of his face is horribly disfigured with tight, gray skin, scars and a missing eye.
- Would Hurt a Child: Other than killing his newborn daughters, he also kidnapped and experimented on Ash with spells from the Black Volume of the Dead.
The favourite son of king Arawn.
- Asshole Victim: He is a sadistic, cruel person, so it's hard to feel sorry for him when Kieran slashes his throat.
- Massively Numbered Siblings: He has around 50 half-brothers and 1 half-sister.
- Parental Favouritism: He is his father's favourite child.
- Sadist: He enjoys hurting people. He used to torture his younger brother Kieran when he was a kid.
- Slashed Throat: His half-brother Kieran sliced his throat.
The youngest son of the King Arawn and a water faerie. When Kieran was still very young his father traded him to the Wild Hunt. There he became friends and lovers with Mark Blackthorn. Kieran eventually became the Unseelie king after he killed his father.
- But Now I Must Go: At the end of Queen of Air and Darkness, he has to attend his duties in Faerie as king and therefore unable to stay with Mark and Cristina. Though the three promise to meet each other regularly.
- Crazy Jealous Guy: When he sees Mark getting close with Cristina, he summons the Wild Hunt to take Mark back, in the process earning him a punishment of lashes (before Emma volunteers to replace him, which only makes things worse as Mark is subsequently turned off to the Faerie world forever). No longer the case as of Queen of Air and Darkness, since Kieran ends up loving her as well.
- Dance of Romance: His dance with Cristina in Lord of Shadows is the turning point of their relationship, as both realize that they have feelings for each other.
- Interspecies Romance: With Mark Blackthorn (half faerie, half Shadowhunter) and Cristina Rosales (Shadowhunter).
- Kaleidoscope Hair: His hair color changes involuntarily according to his mood, though he can adjust it manually.
- Literal-Minded: Since he is faerie he is prone to misinterpreting human speech patterns.
- Massively Numbered Siblings: He has around 50 half-brothers and 1 half-sister.
- Patricide: Eventually kills Arawn when he threatens his friends.
- Sibling Murder: He killed his half-brother Erec.
- Take a Third Option: His brother Erec tells him to kill Cristina to prove his loyalty to the Unseelie Court. Kieran decides to just kill Erec.
- Three-Way Sex: He fell in love with Mark, but as he spends his time with Cristina, comes to love her as well. Mark and Cristina, on their part, also love him and each other.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: His default hair color is blue.
- You Kill It, You Bought It: He became the new king after he killed his father.
The Wild Hunt
The leader of The Wild Hunt.
- Big Damn Heroes: Saves Ty, Livvy, and Kit when they are attacked by the Riders in London.
- HeelFace Turn: He leads the Wild Hunt in the attack against Alicante in City of Heavenly Fire. However, he changes sides around the time he falls in love with Diana and supports Livia's Watch in Queen of Air and Darkness.
- Hidden Depths: Despite appearing to be a gruff person at first, he shows a soft side whenever he is around Diana. He also doesn't care when Diana reveals that she is transgender, calling her the bravest woman he has ever known.
- Interspecies Romance: With Diana Wrayburn who is a Shadowhunter.
- Secret Keeper: He is one of the few people who know that Diana is a transgender.
- The Wild Hunt: He is the leader of it.