The gnomes of the land are a quirky, eccentric folk. Gifted with subtle illusion spells yet prone to friendship and exploration they are a fun loving curious people. They are divided into two main groups. Rock gnomes, otherwise known as Tinkers and the Bog gnomes of the south.
Both subfaces lived in harmony in the centre of the land. The rock gnomes dwelling near the human settlements, ever excited to learn from their taller neighbours and use that knowledge to create wonderful inventions. The forest gnomes were more reclusive yet just as creative and loved to take care of their natural habitats in industrious sustainable ways. Aqueducts, wood conservation schemes and animal shelters etc.
The two gnome groups had friendly competition with one another. Always trying to invent something more creative, more useful and more beneficial to man and gnome. This competition spanned generations. And it was always neck and neck. Yet the tinkers had an advantage. Their proximity to human settlements enabled them to access rarer, more durable material and attain new ideas for their research and experiments. Slowly but surely, they invented more and more wonderful gadgets. The forest gnomes were finding it hard to keep up.
In the year 202 AW the forest gnomes decided it was time to win the competition. They would make the most impressive construct they had ever made. The rock gnomes had no forest to hide in, no real shelter to escape to. The forest gnomes would make protectors. Golems that would guard their kin and keep them safe. Not only this but the golems would surely help give credit to the forest gnomes ingenuity and put them ahead in the inventive marathon.
They made wooden constructs that would stand sentinel in the rock gnome squares and dwellings. After much trial and error, the forest gnomes were happy with their work and shipped the beings out to the rock gnome communities. The tinkers were delighted and thought it brilliant that their cousins would provide such a wonderful gift. The forest gnomes were happy and felt content they were the most inventive…
Then something terrible happened. The golems had been infused with the spirit of nature, as to give them limited sentience. And the spirits rebelled. They thought themselves betrayed and trapped by the forest gnomes. In one terrible night they awoke. Their spirits burning for retribution. They broke into the Tinker’s homes, dragged man and woman into the streets and ripped them to pieces. It was a massacre. Screams echoed through the night and the streets were slippery red with the blood of innocent gnomes. Fortunately, the humans living nearby saw the destruction and swept down from the hills, destroying the corrupt golems with fire and blade. The Tinker community had survived but over a thousand gnomes perished that terrible twilight eve
The forest knowns rushed to help their cousins. In a great heard they left the forest, ran, panicked to Widgdabville. They saw the fire, the broken constructs and the terrible destruction rendered upon their kin. Worse still, they saw the bodies, piled high in the air. The Tinker’s quickly understood what had gone wrong. And though devastated by the loss of home and life they knew it was all a horrible mistake. They knew their cousins had no ill will for them. It had just… happened.
But it wasn’t good enough for the forest gnomes. The mounds of bodies stuck to their minds like flies gasping in a spider’s web. They couldn’t believe the horror they had caused. They apologised profusely but knew no matter how many times they said it, it would never be enough. They made a pact. They had destroyed the homes of their kin, so must too suffer the same fate. They would leave their forests and find a new abode. Not only this, but what they had done could never be forgiven. They didn’t deserve to be called family.
The rock gnomes begged them to stop this cause of action. They told them they were forgiven, that they were cousins, that they could rebuild and still do great things… together. But it fell on deaf ears. What was done was done, and the debt must be paid.
So they left their beloved forest and fled to the south. South and south they went. Until they found a steaming swamp. Mud slurped at their feet, ugly grubs clawed at their face and the heat sucked at them like a vampire. This would be a fitting place to repent. This place of misery would be a place they could do no harm. So the forest gnomes were no more.