Halfling

From World of Charun

Halflings are a short-statured race originally consisting out of farmers, crafters, and tradesmen. Today they are divided into three groups, out of which the largest live on the Three Isles. The "Grass Halflings" live among the Dazak, while the "Forest Halflings" live with the Niematharin. A good-natured and curious folk, they are well known for their wild parties and good food. Though they are well-liked, most keep a close eye on their belongings in a halfling's presence, as they have a not entirely undeserved reputation for being a little too curious with other's things.

Art by rhia474 - rhia474.deviantart.com
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Art by rhia474 - rhia474.deviantart.com

Contents

Origins and History

Halfling
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Halfling

Halflings originate from the land of Halflington - a realm that was destroyed along with many others in the end of the Third Age. Just when or how they came to be there is unknown, even amongst themselves. They were encountered for the first time by Niemathar elves retreating towards the forest of Green Glade at the end of the Second Age during the Trail of Tears. By that time, they already inhabited the lands that later became the nation of Halflington. The Niematharin took a liking to the merry and friendly folk and taught them both magic and the skills of reading and writing.

In the 6th century of the Third Age, a large movement of halflings relocated to the Three Isles. Many did so to take advantage of business and trade opportunities, while others simply obeyed their natural curiosity and desire to explore. Regardless of reasoning, many halflings opted to stay and their population there has thrived, growing today to be the largest gathering of Halflings in Charun.

Halflington itself existed as a nation for the entirety of the 900 plus years that made up the Third Age, before being almost completely leveled by the march of Abbadon the Destroyer. After the resolution of the Cataclysm, surviving halflings eventually rebuilt the former capital of Hillyfield, relocating the site to take advantage of the protection of nearby Castle Farrowbar, as well as the nearby port. However, lacking their former strength and numbers, they were unable to expand further, and Hillyfield existed alone as an independent city-state for almost another four hundred years, until finally being destroyed in 393 IV by Bator, a powerful chieftain of the Dazak. The surviving halflings either fled to the Isles, or were taken on as refugees within the Green Glade. A much smaller number of halfling children were kidnapped by the Dazak, following their ancient customs, and raised as Dazaks.

The resulting halfling populations now live as distinctly separate entities, and intermingling between them is minimal at best. The Isles halflings retain some characteristics of traditional halfling culture, whereas the "Forest Halflings" and the "Grass Halflings" now bear cultures with little resemblance to those of their forebears.

Halfling Fighter
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Halfling Fighter

Culture and Society

One of the defining and dividing aspects of halfling culture is age, particularly among the purer culture of Hillyfield. Great stock is typically placed on the advice of one's elders. The very council of Hillyfield, The Oldies, is based upon this concept, formed primarily of elders governing on the basis of their age alone. It should be noted that the halfling reverence for age generally only applies to halflings- most often, a halfling cares far less for the advice of non-halflings, elder or not. Niematharin tend to be the most frequent exception of this rule, due to their longstanding interaction with the smallfolk.

Halflings on the whole are practical and studious in matters of everyday work and living. Few halflings fear the prospect of a day's hard work as long as they can expect to earn their due from it. What separates halflings from others are their habits once the work is done. Halflings are almost undoubtedly the most social race in all of Charun and at the end of the day, even the most serious halfling enjoys spending his free time among friends and family. They are notorious for their for their sense of revelry, holding parties or throwing festivals at the slightest provocation. Any birthday is a milestone for a halfling, but celebrations marking a new decade or century of a halfling can be phenomenal, warranting parties of epic proportions. Weddings and funerals are slightly more austere, though they manage to remain considerably more upbeat than those of other cultures. The passing of ages has done little to dampen this riotous instinct, despite the obvious damage it has done to their folk. If anything, in spite of it, halflings strive even harder to enjoy life as times grow more difficult.

These frequent fairs have also helped to foster within halflings a sense of competitiveness and athleticism. Such events are often dominated by contests, both physical and mental, as well as those designed to test one’s prowess or skill. Archery, footraces, and scavenger hunts are quite popular.

Another important aspect of halfling lifestyle for which festivals are at least in part responsible is their cuisine. To most halflings, the art of food preperation has become something of an art or science. Halfling chefs treat their profession with gravity and seriousness a wizard might treat the occult. Like the wizard's tome, a halfling chef's cookbook is written using obscure formulae and near incomprehensible instructions detailing time-honored recipes. But while the occultist's book merely allows one to warp reality and cause the impossible, most halflings will tell you that the chef is capable real magic. Among halflings, family recipes are guarded secrets worth laying one's life down for, and each family prides itself on having at least one secret recipe to parade about come time for the Hillyfield Fair (today held on the Isles). These recipes often utilise exotic ingredients, many of which are difficult or dangerous to procure, helping guard their secret. But to the respective chefs, risking life and limb just to find the perfect mushroom or spice is only part of the job.

Forest Halflings retain their reverence for age, but their culture is now strongly shaped by Niematharin values and perceptions. Halflings growing up in the Green Glade are thus "wild" in a way, but also have a notable tendency to think in the long term.

Grass Halflings are completely divorced from all traditional halfling culture, being raised entirely according to Dazak customs. While they retain certain basic halfling traits, their outlook on life is little different from any other Dazak.

More about: Niemathar | Dazak


Armour and Weapons

With the notable exception of the Grass Halflings, halflings are not a warlike people. As such, the typical halfling cannot be expected to own armor or extensive weaponry. Given the nature of the times, however, halflings tend to be surprisingly far from defenseless. Many are accomplished archers and marksmen, a skill fostered by their frequent competition. On the whole, one can expect a halfling to own at most a sling or bow, and perhaps a small blade. Armor is uncommon.

Of the weaponry described, halflings produce little of it. Most of the blades and metalwork comes from outside sources, as weaponsmiths are rare among their folk. Slings, on the other hand, have been a longtime product of halfling craftsmen, and halfling-made slings are well-known to be of superlative quality.


Halfling Rogue
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Halfling Rogue

Customs

A common trait amongst the halflings is their curiosity. Most of them leave home when reaching adulthood in order to have a peek at the big world outside. Those remaining at their homes are regarded "peculiar" unless they grab the walking stick and explore the surroundings. How far they go and for how long they are away is not of great importance. Most of them return, but some take a liking to the big world and stay there.

One halfling custom that has managed to endure through the ages was the tri-annual Hillyfield Fair. More than any mere festival, this event was a call to all halflings in Charun (and halflings seldom turn away down anyone else that happens to show up) to return to Hillyfield and reaffirm old relations and family ties. Originally intended to connect the disparate halfling groups and ensure good relations, it soon earned a reputation of being the greatest party in all of Charun.

Originally held every three years during the first week of Hedon, the last fair of the Third Age was held in 911 III. With Halflington’s destruction less than two years later, it was thought that the tradition would come to an end. For a time it did, but following the completion of New Hillyfield in 14 IV, the fair was held again in 15 IV. It has been held as normal since, a testament to the indomitable spirit of the halfling people. It is now held on the Isles, but it is much reduced from the original affair.


Religion

Halflings interpret and worship their own pantheon of the Old Gods, though they have mostly fallen out of favor. Today, halflings seldom offer prayers, save to Sherri Honeygold, who humans know as Sirine. Other Gods seem to hold much less appeal, earning notice only infrequently. Grass Halflings worship as the Dazak do, and Forest Halflings tend to devote themselves to the Old Gods exclusively, as understood by the Niemathar, to the point even of preferring to use the elven names found in the Elven Pantheon.

The New Powers are worshiped much more commonly by Isles Halflings.


Halfling Ranger
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Halfling Ranger

Appearance

Halflings are one of the smallest major races of Charun. Typically standing around three feet in height, they are sometimes mistaken for human or elven children at a distance. Halfling have ruddy skin, as well as black, brown, or red hair. Males tend to wear their hair short, and seldom bear facial hair, whilst females usually opt for longer hairstyles.

Many halflings go unshod, and most of the rest tend to wear open-toed sandals unless the work dictates stronger footwear. Isles halfings wear clothing more typical of other islanders, varying by occupation and status.

Many halflings maintain “partywear” for use during their frequent celebrations. Nearly the opposite of their typical garb, these garments are brightly dyed. Ostentatious colors are popular, complimented by jewelry among the more wealthy halflings.


Player Characters

With their legendary curiosity, it seems only natural that so many halflings find themselves caught up among adventures. Few occupations offer such a chance to travel and explore, and with their uncanny luck and natural agility, most halflings find themselves quite quited for handling the dangers it presents.

Names for your Halfling character: Halfling Names

Names for your Grass Halfling character: Dazak Names

Names for your Forest Halfling character: Elven Names

Legendary Halflings: Halfling Legends


RACIAL FEATURES:

  • Halfling Heredity: +2 Dexterity. Halflings are quick and agile. Their cordination when it comes to throwing items and using slings is matched by few.
  • Halfling Physique -2 Strength. Halflings are small and weaker than other larger races.
  • Small: As a Small creature, a halfling gains a +1 size bonus to Defence Class, a +1 size bonus to attack rolls, and a +4 size bonus to Hide checks, but she uses smaller weapons than humans use, and her lifting and carrying limits are three-quarters of those of a Medium character.
  • Climber: +2 racial bonus to Climb checks.
  • Stealthy: +2 racial bonus to Move Silently checks.
  • Fearless: +2 morale bonus to saving throws against fear.
  • Good Aim: +1 racial bonus to attack rolls with thrown weapons and slings.
  • Keen Hearing: +2 racial bonus to Listen checks.
  • Lucky: +1 racial bonus to all saving throws and 1 extra Fate Point at start. Halflings are lucky, often surviving endeavours that would have killed a stronger and bigger person.


LANGUAGES:

  • Given Languages: Common, Fieldish
  • Secondary Language List: Dazaki, Elven

The halflings of Hillyfield have an opportunity to learn the languages of surrounding cultures. Those living on the Three Isles are given the Secondary Language List of the Islanders.


CLASSES:

Three Isles

Bard 10%

Fighter 25%

Borderer 5%

Merchant 25%

Rogue 25%

Sorcerer <5%

Wizard <5%

For classes in Dazakia and Green Glade, see the Dazak and Niemathar races for reference.


Statistics

Location in Charun: Three Isles, Dazakia and Green Glade

Population: 25000 on the Three Isles, 2000 in Dazakia, 3500 in Green Glade

Settlements: None

Army: None

Government form: None


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