The best way to begin to describe Gobbins is to start at the beginning, and as it would happen, the beginning of a Gobbin’s story is also the end of another Gobbin’s tale.
Around their oldest of old age (that is, between 230 and 270 years old) Gobbins become hunched, gnarled, green and flimsy, with long fine white hairs. They slow down and down like clocks not wound tightly, their limbs becoming tighter and more knotted. At some point, when they are too twisted to go on, they find a place on the earth and sit. Time passes, their bodies cover with lichen, moss, grass, and their bodies decompose into earth. After about a year, buds appear in a ‘fairy ring’ around the dead Gobbin’s mound. Little shroomy Gobbin spores sprout out of them – and the Gobbins in the community come and gather the young ones from the spores, and communally raise the children until they are able to go off on their own. If a Gobbin is killed (or does not otherwise die naturally), the life cycle is disrupted and the spores do not occur.
Gobbins are completely gender neutral until age 15. At this point it may become clear what gender the child is becoming. The genders are not particular to their reproductive cycle, however, and is more of a social choice.
What do Gobbins do when they are finally adults on their own? They try to survive. Without specific strong parent individuals, there is a fierce pragmatism to this race of fey that protects them in all situations. They are quick thinkers, deeply intelligent, and make sure that one mistake in any situation is the last mistake made – and they never forget it. They adapt very quickly. They are also tinkerers and experimenters – they are constantly pushing the boundaries of what is possible and what is legitimate. Cause and effect, variables and attempts.
Gobbins are able to accomplish so much, and can fit into any job – as long as it interests them. They are not as generous or caring as Brownies, not as personable as Fairies or Humans, and not as high ranking as elemental fey. They aren’t inherently brusque, but… they are more likely to be brusque than the other races.
Gobbin adults may form a partnership – a relationship understanding between two (or sometimes more) where they support one another’s livelihoods, interests, and endeavors. These relationships are put in place for structural and societal purposes rather than romantic ones. They generally don’t go in for romance, but they are capable of it and it does happen on occasion.
NOTE: There are some scholars who theorize that Gobbins and Sylvani are spiritually and fundamentally linked – earth and trees connect to caves and fungi. But there are some who argue that there is a ‘missing link’ between the two races that cannot be recovered or understood. Theories go round and round. The Sylvani would never justify this with a response, and the Gobbins are generally insulted that it would even be suggested, and yet the academic debates go on.