A hag is a near-human being comprised almost entirely of females, characterized by their aged and grotesque appearance, proficiency in dark magic and by their vile and treacherous acts. Hags are incredibly hostile towards human beings, (it is seemingly in their nature, if not their culture,) and tend to live on the outskirts of human civilization, therefore an extensive resource of information has yet to be compiled upon them.
Hags exhibit many physical traits deemed to be unattractive deformities by most humans, such as hunched backs and unsymmetrical facial features, which has lead some to believe that they were a creation of Soahc, (whom they name Bloodgift,) during the great war between him and Tyrrus. They appear elderly, regardless of how old or young they are, giving credence to the belief that they are born old. Despite this, hags are not considered immortal; simply long lived. Hags can breed with other near-human races, but instead of blasphemous this is seen as commonplace in their culture, (despite how unattractive non-hags might find them,) as the birthing and raising of hagspawn helps to bolster their otherwise small communities. Seemingly this is in order to have strength in numbers, as hags themselves rarely breed due to the extreme lack of male hags.
The mating ritual of the hags involves a high proficiency in magic, as such the hagmothers, (the name given to those hags who succeed in bearing trueborn children,) are naturally the most powerful individuals in any given community. Hags live in a matriarchal system where the hagmother has absolute control over her domain, named a hag coven, and is unchallenged in her rule, (this is why one will never find more than one hagmother in a coven at any given time- they are too prone to power struggles, backstabbing and treachery.) Hagmothers give birth to dozens of children over their life time, who either serve subserviently underneath her, or else flee to form their own hag dens.
Wandering hags are common, lone hags that dwell in the dregs of society, going from one town to another to enact their wicked ways. Due to the volatile and treacherous nature of hags, when a hagmother dies her coven often erupts into civil war, and the new leader will not suffer leadership challenges and will almost always banish her sisters. Some may form hag dens of their own, (though any large group of hags without a clear matriarchal leader is doomed to fail,) but due to the fear of their own sisters turning against them, many turn to exile. These wandering hags are those most commonly met by humans, whose wickedness is unrivalled, yet whose strength is relatively weak- being hermits, they are unable to refine their dark arts.
Hags are masters of illusionary and sensory magic, able to change the way the world looks or distort a man's own perception of reality. They are also adept at nature spells, and are undeniably pioneers in the art of potion making. When hag covens form- large communities of hags that work in tandem to discover greater feats of magic, it is generally a recipe for disaster for whatever neighbouring communities are around. It is said the most powerful covens twist the minds and bodies of animals to do their bidding, and it is a widely known fact that hags entice, ensnare and then enslave any passing man that they find desirable.
Although interbreeding with other races is common in hag society, few believe this is due to any act of intimacy or romantic engagement. Instead, hags kidnap, (and in the case of covens, keep as breeding chattel,) and elope with males of other species for the sole purpose of producing hagspawn. Although hagspawn are prone to deformities as well, they are nowhere near as pronounced as that of a regular hag, and thus they are often used when a hag wishes to negotiate with the mortal races. Hagspawn tend to take up the menial tasks of hunting, building, farming, and sometimes learn potion craft and magic from their mothers, though they are always subservient in these relationships.
The largest hag covens specifically hunt down the most attractive males in the hopes of producing a more attractive hagspawn. In this way they can use their hagspawn to attract more males to breed with, instead of relying on spells and incantations that can fail and also put the hags themselves at risk. Hag covens are known to keep pits of men for years at a time, continuously breeding with those that give successful offspring, and experimenting on those that do not.
Though hags rarely interfere in the affairs of the world outside of their covens and dens, this is not always the case. It is said that hags were a part of the forces of Arran during his rebellion against the Tyrannian Empire, (though this is often seen as Empirical propaganda to sully the reputation of Arran,) and most recently the hag known as Cold Ethyl has aligned herself with Soahc the Deceiver in order to enact some sinister plot.