Waterborn is one of the sub-types of the Elemental seeming. These changeling are imbued with the nature of the waters, soft and brutal, gentle and mighty: undines and nymphs, man-eating river demons, water babies, ladies of the lake. Theirs is the blessing of the The Gift of Water.
There are a thousand waterways that lead down to Arcadia. The Fae drag their victims into stagnant millponds, polluted canals, stormy oceans. Deep down away from light and air and warmth, the thorny coral and stinging kelp of the Hedge enfold the victims and pull them to the waters of Faerie. Some of the Waterborn never leave these waters, instead being “blessed” to breathe water as naturally as air. These ointments and potions and pearls do more than just alter one’s breathing. They work more prodigious changes. Because of the necessity of altering a captive’s breathing quickly, Waterborn are usually among those changelings who are most quickly transformed into partfae. This circumstance can result in Waterborn becoming even more emotionally disconnected than most Elementals, as they spend a shorter portion of their durance fully human. The coldness of Faerie ponds and streams seeps into Waterborn’s hearts all too readily. Waterborn are usually slender, with a swimmer’s build or the waiflike slimness of a stream pouring over a rock. Some can be broad-shouldered and powerful, however, with foam about their hair that makes one think of crashing waves. A few are even bloated and toad-like, swollen with their element. They tend to reflect the colors of the water they once lived in, usually in some hues of blue or gray or green. Some Waterborn may have faintly animalistic features, which may make an inexperienced viewer confuse them with Swimmerskins. A faint dusting of opalescent scales, tiny antlers made of coral or a pearl embedded in the throat may hint at a durance in the home of a water serpent.
Waterborn may have shared their durance with changelings of other seemings, inhabiting underwater Fae palaces alongside Swimmerskins and Water-Dwellers. Waterborn, as products of their environment rather than their tasks, may have been given any manner of duties. Waterborn might have been nursemaids to Fae babes with piranha-like teeth, handmaidens to kelpie princesses, guards at a nixie’s palace, drudges in a pallid octopoid monster’s grotto. Waterborn who are kept in palaces above water may have been kept as living fountains, or to decorate large aquariums full of colorful and dangerous sea plants. Some Waterborn may even have been cleaning drudges, washing out pots or stables with a torrent of water.
Faeries and spirits associated with water are virtually countless. The seas produce mermaids and ningyo, merrows and sirens. The Russian vodyanoi and rusalka, the old man and the young girl: each is an embodiment of the dangers of cold, fresh water. Undines and nereids and nixes all epitomize the elegant beauty of the human form melded with running water. A very common motif is the danger of the water; most water-sprites have a reputation as murderers by drowning. Many water-spirits are also prone to taking animal form, with serpents particularly common. From the sea dragon kings of Asia to the European Drac and the horned river serpents of the American Indians, there’s plenty of precedent for Waterborn to be tied to particularly inhuman Keepers, perhaps alongside Beasts or Draconics.
Cleanliness compulsions, cannot oppose children of the same gender, compulsively groom hair or beard, repelled by dry salt, weakened by loss of shawl or ribbon, cannot abide touch of holy water.