Svartalves look like grey little aliens, although the females are a bit more human-looking, with attractive features and long silver hair; they wear a human disguise much the same way the Red Court Vampires do.
They are peerless artisans of the supernatural world, providing the Norvegian gods with weapons and armor. Their craftwares are sold out of a shop in Norway. They are very powerful and skilled in the Magical Art.(reference needed)
Svartalves are very private and independent and they absolutely do not tolerate any nonsense.(reference needed) The can also be prickly about their territory, take their honor very seriously, and are very old school; they are known to react very badly to anyone violating guest right.(reference needed) They are such fighters that they have few opponents, including Harry Dresden, willing to tackle them.(reference needed)
According to the Leanansidhe, Svartalves covet beauty the way dragons covet gold; they also accept sex as payment for favors, or compensation for transgressions. Thomas Raith is required to pleasure Svartalf females when he has been caught spying in their fortress, while Freya[Footnote 3] had to do the same with most if not all Svartalves to pay for the restitution of her necklace.
Waldo Butters describes them as being alien[Footnote 4] but looking human, since they're capable of wearing flesh masks. However, the lore surrounding them is very extensive and contradictory, and next to nothing is known for sure about their motivations.
In the seriesEdit
"B is for Bigfoot"Edit
In "B is for Bigfoot", two scions are honing their hunting skills under the guidance of Coach Pete Vogon, choosing Irwin Pounder as a target. Though limited by Vogon's injunctions, Harry Dresden takes Irwin under his wing, allowing the boy to stand up to them.
In Changes, the summoning ring in Harry Dresden's laboratory has been upgraded to a five foot hoop of braided copper, silver, and iron. It cost Harry Dresden $3,000 from a svartalf silversmith, mainly as a compensation for working with iron.
In Bombshells, the center of their activity in Chicago is a fortress they have built themselves, where Molly Carpenter has tracked the presence of Thomas Raith. A party has been launched for the signing of a non-aggression pact with the Fomor.
In Cold Days, Molly Carpenter's apartment was built for her by svartalves. She said she bought it with honor. Harry Dresden thought they wouldn’t be happy if he dragged a personal fight with Fix at Molly Carpenter's apartment should Fix come looking for him there. Murphy said that Molly Carpenter's place is "under aegis of “Svartalfheim” no one gets in without major assault." Molly has to accompany Thomas Raith each and every time he leaves or return to her apartment or they won't let him back in.