Known by many names including Jackies, Mumplings, and Muanks, these little gnomish people are recognized throughout the realm of Oold. Justly so, considering how widely spread they are and how thick their populations are in places. Thought to hail from a small valley country in the mountains to the north of Myfar, the miniature trolls lead out extremely simple (some would say dull) lives of pleasure and peace. Almost childish in their “big and wonderful” view of the world, they delight in helping others, traveling to see new places, and bringing back souvenirs to duplicate and adopt into their culture. This last habit leads many humans to consider them pests, because the creatures absolutely know that they are committing theft. If an item has gone missing, the first thing that most people do is curse the crafty borrower. Sometimes a favorite hat or wedding ring will be replaced with something of equal value, though it is more likely to find a chewed yarn spool or nothing in it’s place. Mumplings mean no harm in this, and if found and presented with something even nicer or offered a trade, they will usually give the stolen object back. Usually.
Looking past this vexing kleptomania, Jackes love to help others. Many will settle nearby a farm house or hide themselves in a town and do chores out of boredom as they travel. Less shy ones will sometimes approach a homeowner to ask about deals of payment for their services, but many know that mysterious self fixing wagon wheels and dustless shelves will eventually lead to mugs of beer or a bite of food left on the front step overnight. Some Jackies are perfectly content to become pets. A Jackie will not mind greatly if no thanks are given - but it is rude to thank them verbally.
Angering a Jackie who has worked for you over a long period of time is considered bad luck and bad sense, and it will surely bring misfortune. Luckily the worst they could do is sour a cow’s milk.
Jackies have a small magic that lingers about them; often allowing them to preform useful tricks for themselves. Some are simple, while others are very complex. As loath to be anything but gentle as they are, they are quite capable of being firebrands. They enjoy meat and hunting, and are generally capable of self defense in combat. They must be, for trolls and giants who’m they share their homelands with enjoy eating them. Their wanderlust, magical potential and slight prowess for violence make them shoo ins as minute adventurers.
The cartoonish collection of facial features that each Jackie may possess is wide and varied to an extreme. Some are wrinkled and dumpy, others are warty and bumpy, and some are cute and almost humpy. Where they come from is the subject of great debate in academic circles. There are very few records that even tell of the Mumplings, though their epithets probably differed in the past. Their racial proclivity to model their cultures after those nicked from others makes it almost impossible to study their muddy history, but it would seem that the existence of four elemental “tribes” has always been constant. There is an earthy hill people of burrowers, an incense burning fiery planes clan, a water loving tribe of fishermen and swimmers, and a surprisingly advanced group of mountain people who build gliding machines to fly and hunt on the winds.
For the longest time now I’ve had a nation of hobbits and halflings in Oold that I was really hoping would just go away on their own. Last night, however, I realized that in fantasy and traditional games I ALWAYS see Bablo Biggans type creatures, but never see tiny troll like elfy things anymore. So now they’re Jim Henson looking Fraggle/Podling/Teensy/Moomin/Minnish/Lemming motherfuckers.
I want to come up with more goofy stupid nonsense names for them because everyone’s special snowflake midgets have titles like Kender and such, but the three I stuffed into this summary are probably there to stay and good enough for now.