You know, they had an experiment once in which both groups of male and female students were told a story. The men were told something like this: "Bob did great at highschool. He studied very hard, and got accepted into a prestigious university on a full scholarship. After studying medicine, he graduated with great honors and went on to work at a big and important hospital."
The women were told a very similar story, except it was Alice instead of Bob doing all that. Now, both groups were told to make up a continuation of the story. Most of the men groups made up happy conclusions: Bob loved his job, he saved many lives, he developed a new revolutionary surgery technique, he became manager of the hospital, etc.
The women? Over half the groups immediately went with stuff like "...BUT DESPITE ALL THAT, ALICE WAS STILL UGLY AND NEVER FOUND A BOYFRIEND." Or "...BUT EVEN THEN, SHE REMAINED MISERABLE AND NEVER HAD ANY FUN."
Now, you could interpret that in many ways (and given that the whole thing was told to me as an anecdote by my maths professor odds are it's not even true), but the funniest way is probably that the women just couldn't bear the thought of someone other than themselves doing well. Even if it was a made-up story about someone they don't know, the thought of that imaginary Alice succeeding hurt them so much that the only way they could cope was by telling themselves that all of her achievements were actually meaningless (I guess you could say it's a version of the "Sour Grapes Defense", in which a person deals with failure by convincing themselves that they never really wanted whatever it is they couldn't get in the first place).
You are now being these women. The elves in this story won. It was a shitty story, but they got what they wanted from it. Let them rest on their fucking laurels for two seconds before you start thinking up reasons for why they actually lost. Would you've done the same if the men/elf roles in this had been reversed?