Here we explore the awesome power that each fae possess and the price they exact in using them. The repercussions are often permanent.
Regardless of race, all fae folk share one thing in common: they have powerful one shot abilities known as Gifts. Each race will have different types of Gifts, though one can have multiple Gifts. It is not unheard of, though rare, of a fae that could use more than 4 Gifts in his or her life time. Gifts are always expendable and explosive. For example, a Sylph could have a Gift that wraps all her enemies within line of sight to be wrapped in vampiric vines that suck the life force of their victims dry, or a Spriggan could summon a shadow monster that can cut through a boulder with but a touch of its claws.
Every fae knows how many Gifts they each possess, though they could never detect how many Gifts another fae may have, regardless of the means (usually magic. It has been tried time and again but all attempts have failed miserably to date). Using one means that it is lost forever and could never be regained. Not only that, but using a Gift also exacts a toll on the fae’s body or mind, causing it to deteriorate slightly. Scholars have long stipulated that these Gifts are the essential life force of the fae, and totally depleting it will be catastrophic to the individual in the long run. Yet no one knows why such an essential life force can be manipulated at a level that humbles even magic.
A fae that has used up all his Gifts is known as the Giftless. The Giftless can easily be spotted because their wings become visibly deteriorated and damaged. They could still fly, but not as long nor as nimbly as they once did. Over time, their body and mind will break down bit by bit until they totally collapsed.
When it comes to the Giftless, there is a certain stigma associated to it which is shared among all Fortress Cities. The populace in general shun the Giftless for they have nothing else to contribute and their potential are spent. Once a fae is Giftless, they can never gain another new Gift nor regain the ones they have lost, though they could rebuild their broken body and mind from the tolls that the Gift demanded upon its use. The situation is permanent and their social standing is similarly shared as well.