|Temperate forests and hills
|No. of Attacks:
Not all of the wee folk are preoccupied with tempting mortals and heathen revelry. Some of them are just mean little bastards.
The malicious crimbils are rumored to be a corrupted bloodline of wood gnomes. Few sylvan lands do not have tales of these wee folk with skin as white as moonlight and hearts as black as coal.
Crimbils resemble their gnomish cousins in many ways. Their builds are thin and nimble, yet lined with ropy muscle. Their pasty skin is the color of light ash. Like most gnomes, they have prodigious noses. Their slate gray eyes burn with a hate of all that is good and true. A crimbil's stiff white hair juts out at all angles in spiky clumps, though many males are nearly bald. They keep their beards in sharply waxed goatees, but shun mustaches. Crimbil clothing is simple, typically a jerkin and pants, with most crimbils preferring to go barefoot. Some also wear pointed gray caps. Almost all crimbils prefer to dress only in black, grays and dirty whites. The males occasionally wear bronze jewelry decorated with lapis lazuli, including torqs, bracers, amulets and large earrings.
Crimbils speak their own language, other gnomish tongues, and the native language of the domain in which they dwell. They can also communicate with forest animals in a limited manner.
Combat: Crimbils are intelligent and evil. Woe to the woodland traveler who falls into their grasp, for his probable fate is a crimbil feast. Crimbils are not known for laying deliberate traps, but they will harshly deal with trespassers in their woodland homes. After observing their opponents for some time, the creatures will use diversionary tactics to split up groups and isolate the weaker members. Then they descend from all sides like gray little devils. They seek to capture foes if possible, for they enjoy torture. However, if it appears that their prey will not be easy to disable, or may escape, crimbils will not hesitate to use lethal force.
Crimbils attack with clubs, short swords or spears, and most groups also carry nets for ensnaring prey. They have a broad knowledge of poisons, and often coat their weapons with a toxin equivalent to Type O poison, save that the onset is only 1d4 rounds. Characters wounded by a piercing or slashing weapon coated with such poison must save vs. poison or be paralyzed for 2d6 turns. Chieftains of crimbil clans will have access to magical weapons. Like the wood gnomes to which they are related, crimbils have the innate abilities to pass without trace and hide in woodlands (90% chance of success for both). Additionally, they may use entangle, putrefy food and drink, badberry, warp wood and trip, each once per day.
Habitat/Society: Crimbils inhabit dark, gloomy forests in domains such as Mordent, Forlorn, Kartakass and Tepest. They live within enormous, hollow trees with adjoining underground chambers. In theses musty places, the crimbils plot how to spread their agenda of suffering. For some unknown reason, crimbils take a grim sort of satisfaction in causing endless grief for mankind. They participate in all manner of malicious activities, including slaughtering livestock, burning homes, and ruining crops. Crimbils are severe, frightening creatures which seem to take genuine pleasure in nothing. No one has ever seen a crimbil smile or heard one laugh. Their favored activities are forbidding and bizarre, from playing haunting pipe music to burning victims alive inside wicker cages.
Crimbils do not cooperate readily with other races, trusting none but their own kind. Nonetheless, they occasionally cut careful alliances with fell woodland creatures when the need arises. Usually this means bartering their services to powerful entities like evil treants and shadow unicorns. More commonly, crimbils are found in the company of natural animals, preferably those with an evil reputation, such as hawks, polecats, snakes and wasps. They are also known to ride fallow deer as mounts.
Ecology: Crimbils are omnivorous, supplementing a diet of raw meat�preferably sentient in origin�with tubers and fungi. It is rumored that the Queen of Air and Darkness transformed the crimbils' hearts into the black garnets for some ancient misdeed. This may be so much folklore, but no crimbils have ever been captured alive or otherwise to disprove it.