Ratfolk

The Gooade (known commonly as Ratfolk,) are not a proud people. Humbleness is in their nature. As a people, they are paranoid, always worrying that the other races are conspiring against them.   Xenophobia also runs in their blood. Anything alien might be dangerous, and they protect their own.    A single ratfolk, by themselves, are not dangerous or truly that intimidating; but they don't travel alone. When ratfolk move, they swarm. Most of the time, when a group sets out to build a new colony, they do it in groups of 15 to 20.    Draw to detritus and dark places, they suffer from an underserved reputation for evil. Most of the time, however, they just happen to be in the same area as the evil necromancer/fleshwarper/cultist/etc. And, usually, they were there first.   Bravery among Ratfolk is rare and often treated as a form of insanity. The young Gooa who is willing to stand and face the manticore is seen as a necessary if not large loss.    Gooa are born with the knowledge of their spoken tongue, as they learn new concepts or hear new words they know them instantly, even if they don't yet understand them.

Basic Information

Anatomy

Normally measuring between 2 and 3 feet tall, ratfolk look like enlarged rats that have learned to walk semi-upright. Their semi-upright stance means that often when they are running they revert to using their hands for locomotion. Their appearance is completed by an abundance of body hair and a scaly, hairless tail as long as their body.

Genetics and Reproduction

Ratfolk have large litters of kits, but a high infant mortality rate. This means that out of a litter of 5-6, 1 or 2 might survive. Because of this, Gooadein are extremely protective of children and pregnant or nursing mothers.

Growth Rate & Stages

Gooadein have short lifespans compared to other races, with maturity and old age being reached in half the time it takes humans. A 12-year-old ratfolk is well into maturity, whereas a 50-year-old gooadein matriarch is almost unheard of.    However, for the first year of their lives, ratfolk are almost totally defenseless, little more than hairless bundles of flesh.

Ecology and Habitats

Most ratfolk live underground, sewers are greatly favored by them because of the even floors and stable ceilings. Ratfolk can live above ground, but always feel uncomfortable in open spaces, so do spend the majority of their time inside, or in tight alleyways.

Additional Information

Perception and Sensory Capabilities

Gooadein have acute senses, particularly sight and smell, that they use to navigate their underground habitats.

Civilization and Culture

Major Language Groups and Dialects

Gooadein have only one language. This is because their language is hardwired into them. Even raised away from their own kind, they will learn to speak their native tongue before they are 3 years old. This does cause problems with new concepts, as their language does not naturally grow and evolve like a normal language.    However, this does mean that ratfolk see anyone that speaks their language with any fluency as one of their own. When encountering a gooadein, greeting them in their native tongue almost guarantees they will get (for most races) uncomfortably close and start asking you questions about who you are and how your kin are doing.

Common Etiquette Rules

Sharing is the norm in ratfolk lairs. Hoarding things away from others is a sure way to get a bad reputation, and possibly ostracized; a fate worse than death for most gooadein.

Interspecies Relations and Assumptions

Ratfolk are naturally wary of outsiders and anything unusual, though they can become accustomed to non-gooadein over time. They also do not like being alone, and in fact, would rather be with members of other races rather being alone. This means that even though they are quiet people, they make poor thieves.    Gooadein have very strained relations with Dwarves, because they are both subterranean races and covet the same living spaces. This has resulted in often violent altercations between members of these peoples; though they have been known to trade, and in some cases live together.

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