Plantlike humanoids that live in the deep forests, they are tall and strong humanoids made up of vines and moss, along with threatening thornlike teeth. They seem to be blind but can actually detect things nearby easily. They are strong and hardy due to their primitive lifestyle. They are historically known to be mercenaries, raiders, and even a few knights for those dryads who have been taught discipline, but they almost always lack proper education.
The dryads originated from the land itself, they were a servitor race to the crystal golems, created by them ages ago as an experiment. They existed submissively for the crystal golems for about 680 years before a chieftain named Beldol, who brought them together in an uprising against the crystal golems. Which led to their freedom.
This did not sit well with the crystal golems, who returned with a vengeance in 780. Causing a horrible slaughter. Beldol managed to escape deeper into the forest and returned with about two hundred and twenty warriors, known as the wild hunt even to this day, Beldol led a massive charge against the crystal golems, fighting them all the way up to their true home of the old archives before a mercenary army of giants forced them to return back to the forests.
While the wild hunt was away in its own war, the Kraezian empire had colonized their homes, establishing imperial rule over the tribes... Still flustered with rage, Beldol and her wild hunt sacrificed themselves in a final battle, sending the empire away but resulting in the deaths of all of them.
two thousand years later, a horde of desert dwelling nomads from the east invaded Kraezia, the empire was unaware of their arrival due to their first target being the forests the Dryads called home... A lone, brave envoy named Drolglerer, who surprisingly managed to convince the Kraezian empire to stand up for all of Kraezia. The Dryads managed to bring together the entire land for once in its time.
In the years that followed, the empire peacefully integrated the dryads among their own. There were minor conflicts during the entire period ranging through three thousand years. Including a civil war from the shaman Folgrim, despite this the Dryads have melded faithfully into the empires military as excellent soldiers.
They tend to be superstitious though, many of their names are translated to omens of events that happened on their date of growth, such as Beldol ("Night of crystals"). They also fear and despise giants for the mercenary army's intrusion on the wild hunt.
The dryads usually have a very natural and druidic religion, revering nature spirits and believing that each individual dryad is part of the pantheon themselves. This gives some Dryads, especially powerful ones, a very cruel "power complex" they think they hold over others. But above themselves they revere animal spirits, specifically one named only "the warrior". They are unaware that the crystal golems made them even to this day, and instead believe that "the warrior" is a left handed champion from long ago who guards those who fight for themselves.