|Nicknames||“Shorties” “Thieving rats”
“Pale Goblins” “Midgets”
|Average Height/Length||106cm (3’6)|
|Average Weight||~ 40 to 75 KG’s (88 - 165 lbs)|
|Stat bonusses||+1 agility +1 defense +1 intelligence|
Halflings are a race of short humanoids residing primarily in Mapledale and various other scattered regions all over Eden. They are renowned for their excellent produce and the ability to have the most exotic wares available for a reasonable price.
The trading caravans of the Halflings tend to go wherever the humans of Hadriana go. They follow the Hadrian traders passing through Mapledale and offer their services and excellent cooking recipes and only ask for mere protection from bandits in return.
But under this seemingly harmless shell lies something way more sinister. The Halflings of Mapledale are divided amongst the many influential families. These families control the flow of wealth throughout the Halfling realm and are in a constant heated competition with one another over control of the many prosperous trade routes.
Halflings are often discriminated against by other races, particularly Denur and Elves, who believe that the Halfling is the misformed result of crossbreeding between Denur and Humans. It is a common belief that all Halflings are thieves.
The Halfling stands at around 105 centimetres (3’6). Females tend to be a bit shorter than the males. They appear relatively harmless at first sight. They have a soft and generally pale skin, like most northern races. The hair color of a Halfling is really varied. From Dark blonde, brown, red, black and everything in between, it has been seen. The most unusual colors are Silver and the lighter shades of blonde hair.
There is a big gap between the fashion styles of the elite and the common folk. Most of the Halfling fashion is copied from Hadrian culture. The commoners prefer to wear practical outfits and care very little for the expensive clothes that other races wear. In fact, they prefer to produce and sell those clothes to other races for huge profits! This is the polar opposite for the Halfling elite. Who really enjoys looking as magnificent as possible at all times. They wear suits in bright colors and wear tons of jewellery to stand out amongst the crowd. Most of these Halflings are part of the big trader families or hail from the ruling class of Mapledale.
What is important for all Halflings is their headgear. Because they are so small, all Halflings want to look taller by wearing all kinds of tall headgear. From top hats for the rich and big feathered hats for the commoners. The color selection and quality of the hat signifies the status of the Halfling.
The only language that is actively spoken in Mapledale and the other Halfling enclaves is the common tongue. There apparently was an old Halfling language that was a dialect of the ancient Denur language. That old language has been abandoned by pretty much all of Halfling society, as the rapid need for communication with the other races who frequently visited Mapledale made speaking common a requirement for the Halfling race.
Culture and Society
Structure of Halfling society
Halfling society is often described as strict and cutthroat. The Halflings that once inhabited Mapledale are commonly referred to as thieves and robbers. There are many stories of highly coordinated heists performed by Halflings. But all this does not mean that the Halfling race is united. Far from it in fact. There is a lot of infighting amongst the influential merchant families within Halfling society. They fight over trade routes or exclusivity deals that we’re made with the other nations of Eden.
This does not mean that all of Halfling society is nothing but gang wars and uncontrolled violence. Now that the dust settled on the big civil war of Mapledale, most Halflings embraced a more peaceful existence. Preferring cooking, art and woodworking over the old ways that led to nothing but death and destruction. Halflings can be found all over Eden these days, setting up little towns or farms where they sell their homemade products.
Celebrations and Holidays
- The Branderbuck cook-off: Once a year at the start of The Emerald Dusk, a big cook-off is held between the most renowned cooks of Mapledale and the other enclaves. All of this is done with products from the most recent harvest. The Halflings often invite other nations to participate as well. This is mostly to mock them though, because the Halflings know that they are the obviously superior cooks.
- The Bandobras auction: When the trading season comes to an end for Halflings, all old products must be out to make room for the goods of next season. There is one family that hosts the biggest of those auctions. They are one of the biggest trading families and when the big auction comes at the end of the season, all of Eden comes to their little enclave, Aestaerius.
- Mapleday: This is a holiday that is celebrated once per celestial year on the first day of Lilith’s veil. Halflings from all over Eden come to Mapledale to celebrate the founding of their first and only city. This feast contains a big market and dancing festival. When the day comes to an end, there is a massive open banquet for everyone who is willing to celebrate this special day with them. No matter what race you are. This celebration goes paired with a lot of uncontrolled drinking and smoking.
Romance and Marriage
Marriage is just part of life for most Halflings. Family pride and procreation are key in Halfling society because a big family equals a strong one. Thus most Halflings marry at a very young age. Often right after reaching adulthood. It is up to the head of the family to choose a partner for the young halfling. Every family member is a pon on the board that can be strategically used to forge alliances, squeeze out other families and generally grow the family bigger and bigger.
Because the newly wed halfling couple is expected to have lots of children, the heads of the house try to find a partner they could actually fall in love with. When a young halfling already has a relationship when reaching adulthood, they are often allowed to just marry that person after the head of the house made sure it would not damage the reputation of the family.
A Halfling marriage is a feast that lasts up to a week. The official wedding bit happens on the first day and after that, it is seven days of partying. The newly wed couple is expected to open the doors of their house for the entire town to visit and congratulate them. The best wines and beers are poured and the healthiest cattle is butchered for the entire week. The town square is transformed into a hub for all the party guests to join and leave whenever they want throughout the entire week. The master chef of the town will prepare a banquet for the entire village on the last day of the wedding to close it all off.
Life and Reproduction
Family life is extremely important for the average Halfling. It is expected from newly wed couples to get their first child as soon as possible. Halfling fertility is about the same as that of Humans. Which allows them to get lots of children over their lifespan. The bigger the family, the more respected the family. Everyone in the family is expected to contribute to the town and the family businesses. This results in a culture in which the family you are born in decides your career path. A Halfling born in a baker family is expected to become a baker as well. This works the same in every Halfling town and enclave.
Whenever someone is married into the family, it usually results in the girl having to adapt to the family’s expertise and learn the skills required to become a useful part of the family.
Death and Funerals
The most tragic thing that can happen in Halfling society is losing one of their own. The death of a well respected halfling can halt the entire town they lived in for up to a month. The funeral ceremony usually starts with a day of remembrance. The friends and family of the Halfling that passed away gather with the Halflings that show interest.
After that the actual funeral service begins. Every halfling that dies is buried just outside the village.