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  1. AwfulLawful


    I have a theory about Veela that I'd like people to discuss with me. While it isn't perfect, it certainly makes a lot more sense than simply sticking male veela into a story without explanation. It's a prominent thing in Yaoi stories that I'd like to have clarified. Please stay with me on this one. Thanks to reviewers suggesting Japanese creatures as a subject for my next creature fic, I began looking into the mythology of that area. I read through descriptions of the various myths and legends, keeping my mind open for anything that struck my fancy, wrote down a few things and moved on. After that, as I had been reading yet another Veela fic, I looked into the lore to see if I could find any evidence that male Veela even exist. From what I remember in the books there was no mention of them anywhere. It turns out I was wrong: there is one small mention. According to Harry Potter Wiki: "One of the questions on the 2nd Level W.O.M.B.A.T. asks the examinee to identify which of five given statements is false; one of these claims that full-blooded male Veela do not exist." Though that question is never answered in the books, it does bring up an interesting question. If there are only female Veela, then how do they breed? I knew they had been based on Sirens from Greek Mythology. What I didn't make as a connection until looking through the Wiki entry on Veela was that they closely resembled Harpies as well. The entry is as follows: "When Veela are angry … they transform into something more like Harpies — their faces turn into cruel-beaked bird heads while long scaly wings burst from their shoulders, and they can launch balls of fire from their hands." Therefore it can be easily assumed that Muggles created Harpies for their Mythology because Veela existed in the area. And though it is also never stated in the books, Harpies are a female-exclusive race. There are no males whatsoever. Therefore I can only conclude that male Veela simply do not exist in the wizarding world as we know it, at least as full-blooded Veela. Fleur and Bill have a son, but he is far from full-blooded. Therefore almost every fanfic making male characters Veela must occur in an alternate universe at the very least to make them possible. But wait: there's more. This bothered me until I looked more into Harpies and found something odd. The Wikipedia page for Harpy has a link directly to Tengu at the bottom of the page. Curious and generally trusting of the information trail, I clicked. What I found was this: "Although they take their name from a dog-like Chinese demon (Tiangou), the tengu were originally thought to take the forms of birds of prey, and they are traditionally depicted with both human and avian characteristics. The earliest tengu were pictured with beaks-" As I was Wiki-walking, something began to click into place in my head. Both of these creatures are single-gender breeds. Veela/Harpies are exclusively female and Tengu are exclusively male. It seems to me as if it would make reproduction impossible, especially since there is no mention of either reproducing in the way a phoenix would. But luckily I paid attention in school. By the same weird memory pattern that led me to Atavisms, I remembered Sexual Dimorphism. "Sexual dimorphism is a phenotypic difference between males and females of the same species. Examples of such differences include differences in morphology, size, ornamentation and behavior." In some cases, this difference may be so extreme that the two genders of a single species are thought, for a time, to be completely different species existing independently of one another; such as what briefly was the case with the Anglerfish. As I kept reading things only got better. My Wiki-walk led me to this: "In species that do not form pair bonds, male and female territories are often independent." Avian species in particular also have a habit of the males and females having completely different territories and only coming together during a specific season to mate; this would explain how these two creatures could prefer live in vastly different areas of the world and yet be the same species. ADDITIONAL NOTES More oddly specific similarities between Veela and Tengu: Both are beings of a single gender with the ability to easily assume an alternate form. Veela are primarily human with a bird-like transformation, whereas Tengu are a primarily bird-like being with a human transformation. In popular culture, both Veela and Tengu have a middle-ground in these changes, as humans with wings. Both have very strong transformative abilities. Slavic Veela change into swans, snakes or wolves. Tengu tend to take the shape of humans, generally priests/priestesses or monks/nuns. Tengu, however, are known to change humans into animals, so it is unknown if they can take on those shapes themselves. Both have their own magic that does not require a wand. Both have the ability to summon balls of fire. Element and shape are identical. Both produce a possible wand core. Veela Hair is ‘temperamental’, though still used. Tengu feathers, which are known to be used to create powerful magic fans, could likely be used as a wand core as well. Both can control the weather. Slavic Veela can summon storms, Tengu can summon wind. Both are irascible and known as formidable warriors. Both are known to be fiercely defensive of their territories. Both myths are sometimes thought to be the ghosts of humans. Slavic Veela are believed to be the ghosts of women who have drowned, especially those who betrayed their lovers. Tengu are thought to be the ghosts of the overly arrogant or prideful. Knowledgeable men become greater Tengu while the ignorant become lesser Tengu. Both have a distinctive form of control over humans of the opposite gender: Veela can hypnotize men, Tengu primarily possess women. BOTH SEDUCE HUMAN MEN. Admittedly, Tengu possess human women to do so, but still. Mostly inconsequential differences: Veela are typically fair-colored, likely white (though their human forms will rarely have dark hair). Tengu are usually based on Kites or Crows, and are therefore black, brownish-black or very dark grey. Anyone familiar with birds will know the males and females normally look different, so that doesn’t prove anything. Seriously, search what a male and female Mallard Duck look like. Almost look like two different birds, don’t they? The difference between these two beings is small compared to that. Veela and Tengu prefer vastly different areas for their territories. Veela are partial to water-rich environments, whereas Tengu favor dense forests and high mountains. This predilection for living very far apart is literally the only big, definite difference between them, and real bird species exist this way. And considering the migratory patterns real birds have worldwide, it is very likely that meeting once a year to mate isn’t difficult at all. Notes: If anyone feels the need to use this theory in a story, PLEASE DO. The fact that I pieced the facts together doesn’t mean they weren’t there. Just credit me with the idea, okay? The long-nosed Tengu image was created AFTER the bird-like Tengu legends, as a way to humanize them and symbolize virility, which only adds, “Both are highly desired by humans” to the list. This obviously symbolic nose, by the way, is said to be ‘seven hand-spans in length’. Hopefully, that is an exaggeration. I actually googled this question, thinking someone must have figured it out before me, since it was so glaringly obvious as I looked through these facts. What I found was HUMON COMICS. If you go to her comic Manala Next Door and find Happy Marriage, you'll see what I mean. As she so cleverly points out, "None of the old stories explains where tengus come from, they are always male and there are no stories of them having intercourse with human women, so it has been speculated that the tengu women look so different that they are considered a different race, or possibly that they live far away from the men. I joined the two theories with the harpies. They are only female but are said to get pregnant "from the wind", and tengus are said to be the masters of wind." Despite the fact that she was not referencing Harry Potter, the woman had a brilliant point. Not only am I now addicted to this website, I am also reminded that Wizarding tests are often full of trick questions. The W.O.M.B.A.T. question from the books was trying to tell us something. The answer is that male Veela DO exist: they're called Tengu. What does everyone think?