gnome, gnome on the range

Awk comes from a well-to-do but not noble family of gnomes. All gnomes are innately curious and easily fascinated, and for most this manifests as their interest in tinkering, but not Awk. Awk enjoys learning, but tinkering never really clicked for him. One day while avoiding his studies and taking a walk through the forest, Awk’s mind wandered and he found himself utterly transfixed watching a squirrel burying nuts for winter. He sat watching the squirrel for hours, fetching a mouthful of nuts, carefully burying each while always looking over his shoulder to check that his neighbor was not watching. A mouse emerged from its nest right between Awk’s legs, and as Awk watched the squirrels, the mouse would come in and out with fat bunches of grass between its teeth. Awk noticed the mouse and started to examine the forest around him. Everywhere he looked, the forest was teeming with life.

Awk spent the rest of the day traveling between the small worlds of the forest creatures he suddenly felt as if he was truly seeing for the first time. As the sky darkened, the birds were replaced by bats, and Awk’s excitement kept him sitting as still as possible in the forest until he found himself in his first Druidic trance.

Thereafter, Awk had no patience for the busy, noisy life of gnomes and set out to explore the natural world.