In the beginning, there was the Astral Plane, and at the center there was the Elemental Chaos. This sphere of the four elements twisted and swirled around itself, creating and destroying in equal measure. From this chaos came the elemental titans, who began gathering power to themselves in the form of their elements. They fought one another, but so too did they look outward to the Astral, and watch the nascent gods rise from nothingness.
Soon war was waged, titan upon god, and god upon titan, even as they warred upon themselves. Great elemental forges were created, where armies of elementals known as archons were created and sent to do battle against the many forces of the gods. In the end, when the gods united and slew the titans, their corpses became the elemental planes, adrift in the Chaos. In turn the gods used the elemental planes to craft the prime material, insulating it from the Chaos with the Ethereal Plane.
The archons were left to their own devices, and in time they changed, influenced by the gods’ presence. Some became the creatures known as genies- the dao of earth, djinn of air, efreet of fire, and marid of water. These, who most resembled the civilized creations of the gods, found some measure of kinship with those in the prime material. On rare occasion, that kinship has turned to something more- and from that has arisen the genasi, the half-elementals of the world.
While many genasi inhabit the prime material, an equal number or more exist in the Elemental Chaos, either independently or as part of the great cities the genies have constructed.
Being raised among the Dao is typically an exercise in loneliness. The Dao are highly territorial and greedy, and only grudgingly will give up a corner of their homes to their offspring. This typically consists of a small cave at the end of a mined-out tunnel, abandoned for its lack of wealth. Any attempts by the genasi to expand their space, either through the carved out tunnel systems or into the surrounding rock, will be seen as an usurpation attempt and dealt with thoroughly. Most genasi of earth will opt to leave and claim a territory of their own far away at the first real opportunity.
The Djinn are among the most friendly and caring of the genies, and a genasi born of a Djinn will enjoy a life filled with luxuries. They will live in a world filled with silks, wine, fresh fruit, delicate cheeses and exotic roast fowl, traveling at a whim upon tamed whirlwinds. If anything a genasi of air may find life too boring and lacking thrills, without the proper perspective to appreciate exactly how valuable their safe life in the sky truly is.
The Efreet see their offspring as pawns, to be used and manipulated. They are ruthless and expect the same from genasi, using their half-breed nature as a goad to make them work harder and become more powerful. While few genasi of fire ever rise beyond becoming a useful and loyal lieutenant for their Efreet parent, by the time they reach adulthood the survivors are often the most dangerous and cunning inhabitants of the City of Brass, with more than their share of blood on their hands.
The Marid tend to be cold and uninterested parents. While they will happily engage with their offspring on things that interest them, they don’t bother to show interest beyond that. Fortunately for the youngest genasi of water, Marid find storytelling to be one of their favorite pastimes. Often genasi are left to their own devices, which can lead to them striving hard to earn their parent’s attention and admiration- or can lead them to try and prove their parent wrong by achieving greatness in areas the Marid would not care about.