Natives of Imald, gnomes are often forgotten in the grand scheme of the moon’s impact on Qairn, but the sly, stealthy gnomes have much to offer the world and far more willingness than their aloof eladrin counterparts.
Gnomes are stand of a height with halflings, typically at least 4 feet tall. Apart from their size, they resemble elves or eladrin, with pointed ears and chiseled facial features such as high cheekbones and sharp jaws. They have a more wild look than eladrin do, though, particularly in the hair that sprouts from their heads in random directions. Some male gnomes sporout tufts of hair from their chins, but they otherwise lack body hair.
Gnome skin tone ranges from a ruddy tan through woody brown to rocky gray. Their hair can be virtually any color, from stark white to blond and various shades of brown to autumnal orange or green. Their eyes are glittering orbs of brown, green, gray and blue.
Gnomes are as long-lived as eladrin, living over 300 years, but they show more of the effects of age. A gnome over the age of 100 has gray or white hair and skin that shows the wrinkled and weathered lines of a century of laughter, but even the oldest gnome retains the strength and agility of youth.
In quiet forests of Imald and remote woodlands in the world, gnomes live out of sight and mostly beneath the notice of the larger races. Traditionally, gnomes dwell in homes dug among the roots of tree, easily overlooked and cleverly concealed by camouflage and illusion. They are fond of the burrowing animals that share their habitat, such as badgers, foxes and rabbits and have a sense of kinship with these small animals that share their forests.
Unobtrusiveness is a virtue among gnomes. They grow up on games of stealth and silence, in which the winner is the last to be discovered. An adult gnome who draws attention in a crowd is considered dangerously rude. Gnome folk heroes are not mighty warrior, but tricksters who slip out of captivity, play great pranks without being detected, or sneak past magical guardians. They deflect both aggression and attention with humor, and they guard their thoughts with friendly laughter.
Unlike the cold, detached eladrin, gnomes are motivated primarily by curiosity. Eager to see what the world has to offer and willing to be awed by its wonders, many gnomes have grown weary of the comparatively small moon and have ventured into the wider world. Gnomes who are drawn to adventure are most often driven by this curiosity and it does tend to foster something of a condescending attitude towards the rest of the earth, though of a different stripe than the eladrin’s. While an eladrin would view an elf as uncouth, a halfling as soulless and a dragonborn as a brute, a gnome finds these races quaint, curious and even a little silly, at times. At their most capricious, gnomes have a difficult time taking Qairn entirely seriously.
Gnomes speak Imaldi natively but, almost as a rule, they have a love of languages and adopt as many as they can.
Dietarily, gnomes favor vegetables, potatoes, carrots and turnips being stables of their tables. They have a special fondness for mushrooms, of all shapes and sizes, and no truly gnomish meal doesn’t feature at least a few.