Gumperrttee Gambleham the Goblin
Goblins are known generally to be unsavory, evil, malicious, untrustworthy and even fearsome creatures of the dark dank places of the world’s hidden corners. Though they are considered to be one of the fae, they are typically rejected by most denizens of the Faerie Realms. There are many types and many clans and subspecies of goblin. One of the more notorious of the many thousands of goblin clans is the Gambleham Clan. Generally speaking, the Gamblehams are the most diverse in appearance, ranging in height anywhere from 1 to 4 feet. Most are of a particularly foul disposition- being one of the most persistent enemies of the hedge-boggles and all denizens of the Hedge. And though technically all goblins are ill disposed- at best- towards the Hedge dwellers- feeling resentful and jealous towards them and their way of life- the Gamblehams are among the foremost nemeses of the Hedge. [The only exception to the overall and automatic hostility on the part of goblin-kind towards the Hedge and all its inhabitants is a species of goblin known as the Hobgoblins, and their relationship to the Hedge community is very complicated, though it could not exactly be called friendly.] Most Gamblehams prefer to spend their time in petty acts of cruelty, theft, murder, warfare and kidnapping mortals for the infamous Goblin Market. Their greatest distraction and obsession, however, is plotting their Great Invasion- their pipe dream battle to be, in which they shall successfully invade the Hedge and thus ultimately gain entry into the land of Faerie itself! There have many attempts by many goblin clans to invade or at least burgle the Hedgerow, but all these ventures have ended in many a hasty and ill formed retreat or the complete disappearance of the invading goblins.
It was thus decided one dark and foul night in some dank and forgotten rotting marsh in some smoky, greasy goblin fort upon a makeshift throne made of horrific and unmentionable materials that what the Gamblehams needed was a spy to infiltrate the Hedge itself. It was becoming obvious to even the thick headed and brutish Gamblehams that simply smashing their way to their dream of the conquest of the Hedge and the Realms of Faerie was, perhaps not going to work after all. But there was no way that any goblin could ever elude detection by the Guardians of the Main Gates to the Hedge- the much feared Dragonfly Militia. But it occurred to the Gumperrttee chieftain- Lord Rottsroider, a title he bestowed upon himself- that there was one goblin among them who might just be perfect for the job, though by the Gamblehams’ estimation, this goblin had been useless for any other task.
That very same ill-regarded goblin was Gumperrttee Gambleham. Gumperrttee Gambleham was, indeed, one of the youngest, and by far the most diminutive members of the Gambleham Goblin Clan. Generally speaking, goblins range very widely in size and shape- and even in temperament, but Gumperrttee was an exception, even among goblins. Gumperrttee was, even before the “Hedge Incident”- as the eventual plot to infiltrate and gather information on the Hedge became known- a bit of an embarrassment to the rest of the Gambleham Clan. He was for one, the smallest goblin ever (except for the bullymidge goblins, but most goblins barely considered them more than insects), and certainly the smallest Gambleham. Gumperrttee was no more than 7 inches tall!!!! Furthermore, there was Gumperrttee's penchant for more gentle and intellectual pursuits: an absolutely horrifying condition as far as the Gamblehams were concerned (although many hobgoblins are known for being quite the philosophers as well as being very well read and quite well versed in their letters). Gumperrttee spent most of his time eluding his brothers and sisters constant bullying and evading the constant abuse he suffered at the hands of the other goblins. It was, however, all these very unfortunate and embarrassing qualities that made Lord Rottsroider think of Gumperrttee when considering the most likely candidate for infiltrating the Hedge.
Gumperrttee was thus summoned and given the choice of remaining in Snottsheim Marsh- location of the city of the Gamblehams- and continuing to suffer as he did, or taking this very dangerous mission that would- in Lord Rottsroider’s own words, “…most likely end in your foolish little gnat of a hide being killed by hedge-rats (the name most goblins use for hedge-boggles)…OR WORSE!!!” Gumperrttee, however agreed quite readily, and was thus “disguised”. Gumperrttee’s “disguise” consisted of Lord Rottsroider’s personal goblin attendants equipping him with a walnut shell helmet, meant to emulate the hedge-boggles acorn and buckeye husk helms to better enable him to blend in with other hedge-boggles while on his covert mission. It was thought by Lord Rottsroider and his lackeys- or “Council” as Lord Rottsroider insisted on calling them- that this disguise, Gumperrttee’s small size, as well as his unsavory ability to read and write would suit him well for recording all that he observed.
"You sneaks back here, see? To Snottsheim Marsh and tells wot all you learned- all duh secrets and maybe how to kill all them hedge-rats and gets in to the Hedge itself!” Lord Rottsroider said harshly to Gumperrttee when he was finally ready to depart. These were all the commands Gumperrttee received from the chieftain before being picked up and tossed out into the soggy marsh and told, “Follow that map…it’ll lead ya to a Gate into the land of the Hedge-rats! GO!!”
The disguise was, at best, ridiculous and wholly unsuccessful. Gumperrttee was found out almost immediately by one of the Hedge Guardsman: Robin of the Dragonfly Militia. However, it became obvious to Queen Trillium and all the others that here, in this little misfit of a misfit, there was something other than a marauding, murderous, evil-hearted goblin. Instead, all the denizens of the Hedge were instructed to behave as though the goblin “spy” was, as yet, undiscovered. And so, Gumperrttee continued for quite some time to observe every day life within the Hedge, thinking himself undetected, while all the while being watched and shadowed by Robin the Dragonfly Faerie. However, Gumperrttee had decided that very day as he left Snottsheim Marsh that he would never return to the marsh and the dank cruel life there even just long enough to impart that which he might learn. In fact, the more he learned, the less he wanted ever to leave the Hedge. Soon after all of this, Gumperrttee decided he should “reveal” his presence to the Queen and beg her mercy, thinking that perhaps she might even allow him to stay, furthermore, little Gumperrttee could no longer bear the guilt of his imagined deception. And so it was that Robin allowed Gumperrttee to “find” him and eventually led the little goblin to the High Green Court and an audience with Queen Trillium- the Green Lady herself! Queen Trillium took mercy on the poor mistreated little fellow, realizing that Gumperrttee was more likely to use his wicked looking goblin dagger to cut up vegetables as to harm any living creature, and even granted Gumperrttee citizenship within the Hedgerow- much to Gumperrttee’s delight! Robin remained Gumperrttee’s guide and constant companion, and they soon became friends. To this day, Gumperrttee Gambleham has never yet returned to Snottsheim Marsh, but he has taken to “adventuring” outside of the Hedge, his desire to learn taking him to many new and strange lands… The Gamblehams, however, have never forgiven this insult, though they also have never retaliated, and the “Great Invasion” has still yet to occur.
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