|“|| Do not sign any contracts or agree to any bargains with faeries. Faeries love to haggle but will usually do so only if they are sure they will win. Do not eat or drink anything a faerie gives you. Do not go attend their magical revels under the hills. They will paint a beautiful picture of what awaits you there, but its beauty is false and hollow. Do not tease a faerie about their height. Do not expect direct answers to direct questions. Do expect indirect answers to indirect questions.
Faeries, also known as the Fair Folk or fey, are an extremely cunning race.
Due to the legend of their origins, the faeries are associated with the beauty of angels and the viciousness and malevolence of demons. Besides angels, they are the least understood of all magical people—the great ancient mystery in the Shadow World. Although they are widely believed to be hybrid descendants of demons and angels—something that their kind has seemingly not bothered to deny—faeries possess human souls just as other Downworlders do, and they are counted as members of the human race by the denizens of Heaven.
The Fair Folk are known for their unearthly beauty and fair skin, appearing in various pastel hues of blues, greens, and violets, even pearl, to name a few. Faeries commonly incorporate flora and multiple forms of vegetation as part of their ensemble. Many faeries are extremely attractive with delicate and regal faces and exquisitely colored features, such as their eyes, with colors "as clear as glass".
The Fair Folk are also unable to lie. They might, however, tell what they believe is true, even if it is not. They may also expertly weave lies into sentences by using methods such as not telling the whole truth, letting others assume things, or not correcting the people with whom they're speaking; this does not, however, apply to half-fey, who can lie as easily as any other being.
Faeries possess the unnatural abilities of swiftness and grace. Some are even given wings, which may be due to their angel blood. The wings between faeries and angels vary as well, with angels having larger, pristine bird like wings, while faeries commonly have butterfly wings the color of kaleidoscopes.
The magic of the fey is believed to be unique in the world. It is very old and powerful, but neither demonically nor seraphically aligned. They can harness the powers of the ley lines, along with other strange magics. The Faeries are older than the Accords, older than the Nephilim, and are said to even be the oldest among all races of Downworlders.
The origin of faeries vary according to legends and is not wholly known. According to one, faeries are fallen angels, cast down out of Heaven for their pride. Another states that faeries are born of the union of demons and angels, both of whom were present on Earth in the early beginnings of the planet's history. However, most known faeries nowadays are in fact the offspring of other faeries (just as most Shadowhunters are the offspring of other Shadowhunters and not born from the Mortal Cup), so how faeries were originally created is actually unknown.
Faeries are capable of bearing children. However, they apparently do not reproduce often as it is very hard for them to get pregnant.
A union between human and fey will result in a human offspring that may retain some faerie-like aspects or have a penchant for certain kinds of fey magic. Additionally, the children of faeries and Shadowhunters will be Shadowhunters, though they, too, will often have some faerie-like physical attributes, such as pointed ears.
While most half-faeries would be primarily human, those who reside among faeries or in the Courts would have or develop stronger faerie qualities, much like with changelings.
Iron, particularly those merely wrought but yet to be heated and shaped, is toxic to faeries. Because of this, the term "cold iron" has been used to refer to the fey and the fact that iron is cold to the touch, which was at one time believed to be associated with its magical properties. Steel, an alloy of iron, is usually not toxic to faeries, as it is the purity of iron that grants its power over the fey, though it does weaken them to some extent. They are also vulnerable to rowan wood, salt, and gravesoil.
While able to stand the presence and its touch, faeries are severely weakened and become ill if fooled into drinking holy water.