Rusalkas are female spirits who dwell in lakes, rivers, and streams. Their beguiling song is known to lure men to watery graves. Their clothing is usually nothing more than a gown or shawl, and some rusalkas go bare skinned. Some believe rusalkas to be the restless spirits of drowned maidens, tied to the place of their deaths. However, they are in fact water spirits.
Most of the time, just one rusalka inhabits a body of water, but sometimes a small covey lives in an area. Rusalkas generally lead lonely lives, but some tales indicate that vodyanoi take rusalka wives. To ease their loneliness, these fey often use their song to entice men to join them. Some evil or neutral rusalkas are content to let their victims drown, while good rusalkas might confer water breathing upon enamored mortals. Relationships between willing mortals and rusalkas are doomed to end in sadness.
The rusalka inevitably frees her paramour or forces him to leave by refusing to give him the ability to breathe water when she realizes he is not truly content to live in her world beneath the water’s surface.
Rusalkas speak Aquan, Common, and Sylvan.