A tribe of elves created for and used by the Elfquest Roleplaying Game.
Unlike Wolfriders, Plainsrunners have no ancestors who shape-changed and mated with an animal. Plainsrunners are pure elves though, like all the elfin tribes, they have shrunk over the generations until they are no taller than Wolfriders or Go-Backs. Plainsrunners have adapted to a nomadic lifestyle by observation and research rather than by blood-knowledge, and the clan has domesticated jackals to help them hunt.
They eat cooked meat when available
Unified perception as Plainsrunners: but most never interact beyond individual clans
The Plainsrunners have the least advanced technology amongst the elfin tribes, and the plainsrunners have no knowledge of metal-working. They use javelins and bolas as missile weapons, adding range to their javelins with atlatls. In hand-to-hand combat, Plainsrunners use short spears that can double as javelins.
In order to help them with their hunting, the Plainsrunners breed and domesticate jackals. Typically, an elf will choose a mated pair of jackals to bond with and use in their hunting trips.
During the spring (Newleaf) and summer (Hottime), the Plainsrunners split up into small family units of three to eight members each and follow the herds. During autumn [Leafchange] the Plainsrunners gather in clans, each made up of several family units and, from the clans, send out large hunting parties to gather game to be preserved for winter (Whitetime). When the snows of Whitetime finall come, the clans splinter into families agin, each finding its own refuge in which to weather the Storms. While all Plainsrunners consider themselves to be part of the same tribe, no lare-scale tribal structure exists; social interaction is restricted to the clan level.
For each clan, one female elder is designated the firebearer, and entrusted to keep the clan's coals going. The firebearer of each clan keeps the coals in a skin bag with just enough fuel to keep the coals hot. Firebearers do not hunt. Firebearers often have one or two younger female apprentices, to take over as firebearer when the elder dies. When apprentice firebearers hunt, the coals stay with the clan.
Also unlike Wolfriders, Plainsrunners use fire for cooking, though they must keep the coals from one fire to start their next fire. Plainsrunners often eat raw meat, because they do not access to a coal. Humans dwell on the plain, but the Plainsrunners have no history of conflict with them. However, human fear and hatred of elves allows no friendship between the two species, and humans sometimes capture and torture elves. To avoid humans as much as possible, the Plainsrunners are mostly nocturnal, hunting while the humans sleep. The humans of the plains live similarly to the elves. Both species subsist during the Whitetime on whatever game they caught and preserved during Leafchange, and on the products of hunting and foraging expeditions between blizzards. For the rest of the year they follow the herds in nomadic family bands.