The Clurichaun are Gallain native to Ireland, although they can be found anywhere that Irish immigrants have made their homes. They once encouraged dreamers to associate them with leprechauns, something they now greatly regret.
Popular myth speaks of leprechauns as small, round-bellied shoemakers to the noble faeries, who hid their pots of gold rather than see any part of it spent or lost. Leprechauns are arguably the most well-known faeries in existence. Throughout the world they are recognized on sight as the bearded little men dressed all in green with buckled shoes, curved pipes in their mouths and a jug of whiskey close at hand. Along with shamrocks, they have become a symbol of all that is most touristy about Ireland and things Irish.
Clurichaun aren't actually like that at all, though they made the mistake of fostering that image in mortal heads, and it has clung to them ever since. Considered Gallain, clurichaun feel that they are just one more type of commoner. They are really only present in large numbers in Ireland, but a few of them have made the transition to areas where the Irish immigrants are plentiful. If the Kithain of Boston or Chicago or Toronto or Melbourne don't realize they have clurichaun among them, well, they just aren't looking hard enough, are they?
Clurichaun are an endearing kith that excels at revelry while holding their own when given responsibilities. They love a good time and work hard to make sure everyone enjoys themselves. Pooka have nothing on clurichaun in the joke department, though clurichaun jokes tend to be less bitter and manic. Clurichaun have a talent for fitting in and smoothing things over. They always seem to be aware of the changing currents in any social situation, and the Seelie among them use these insights to say and do the right thing at the right time. They are very responsive to the needs of the moment, and can be trusted to live up to any responsibilities or duties placed upon them.
Not that they don't annoy other Kithain sometimes. Those who are Unseelie use their talent to do exactly the opposite of what is indicated. If silence is called for, they delight in being loud and obnoxious; if a few stern words might serve to stop a party that's gotten out of hand, they pour oil on the fire, becoming wilder than the most outrageous party-goer.
All the above goes right out the window the minute they imbibe any alcoholic beverage. Once they start, they just can't quit, and they draw farther and farther into themselves, brooding on all the cares of the world. When drunk, Seelie clurichaun become maudlin, teary-eyed and sloppy. They can get passionately sentimental over what they had for breakfast that morning, holding it up as the never-to-be-found-again ideal. The Unseelie just get mean. Anyone who gets in their way when they're in this state had better move or be able to stomp them flat before the clurichaun tears them a new… well, you know. This is why many Kithain view them with suspicion and not a little aggravation. No doubt the clurichaun became so proficient at disappearing in "the twinkling of an eye" in response.
Though they like to think of themselves as jacks-of-all-trades, they are particularly adept musicians. They are widely acknowledged as preeminent bards, and even the least talented clurichaun can pick up an instrument and produce a few chords or pick out a simple tune. Clurichaun are insatiable when it comes to music, dance and tales, soaking them up and adding to their repertoires anything new, be it a dance step, turn of phrase, joke, amusing tale or musical passage. Harking back to their Celtic roots, clurichaun have prodigious memories and often act as traveling bards.
Beginning Clurichaun can't assign any more than 3 to any ability other than Performance, even with freebies. This represents their eclectic outlook. They find it hard to improve an ability without getting bored or moving on to something else. This makes them excellent bards as they usually know a little bit about everything.
They bring the same intensity to their other great love of collecting. Sometime between being a childling and becoming a wilder, clurichaun usually become fascinated by a particular thing, be it matchstick models, shiny rocks, handwritten poems of minor poets, recordings of every traditional group in Ireland, pictures of clouds, muffin pans or Hollywood scripts. Whatever attracts the clurichaun becomes a lifelong fascination and object for collecting. Pity the poor clurichaun who doesn't realize his faerie nature before he's a grump. All that collecting time lost! So much to make up for! While they won't go to suicidal lengths or betray their friends (well, most won't) to obtain marvelous examples of their chosen collectible, they will do almost anything else to get it. Legends of clurichaun hoarding pots of gold came from this curious practice, and probably account for their relative paranoia about letting just anyone view their precious collections.
Appearance EditClurichaun rarely grow above 5 feet 5" tall. Their bodies are compact and muscular, giving the impression that they are stocky and solid. Their features, while almost always good-natured, change greatly depending on their seeming. Their ears are pointed, but smaller and less noticeable than those of the sidhe. Clurichaun usually have red or tawny colored hair and green or blue eyes that slant slightly upward at the outer edges. In modern times, clurichaun who have emerged in black families tend to have reddish tints to their hair and hazel or light brown eyes.
Rather than wearing the green jackets, kneepants and hats popular a century ago, clurichaun tend to wear more normal clothing. They have a decided preference for green, gray and brown, however, earthy colors that allow them to disappear in natural surroundings. Clurichaun craftspeople wear sturdy workclothes and craft aprons, while musicians prefer jeans and T-shirts with leather jackets. When they go to court, they usually wear chimerical clothing that is vaguely medieval-looking so they'll blend in with the crowd. They always have a little bit of green in their attire — a ribbon, a belt, a coat or cloak, a hat or a green stone set in a ring. Only the clurichaun know why, but others theorize that they accepted some sort of geas long ago that demands the "wearin' o' the green." Additionally, clurichaun prefer gold jewelry such as torques, heavy rings and Celtic-style cloak pins.
Clurichaun can be found traveling about playing and singing, storytelling as members of repertory companies, making the craft show circuit, or as tinkers (who call themselves the travelers, not tinkers, by the way). Some prefer a more settled life and own their own craft shops or pubs. A very few accept posts as court bards. Whether travelers or sedentary, all clurichaun have some place they call their own where they store their collections. Only their most trusted friends are invited to their homes since they have often spent their lives accumulating just the right collectibles and have a horror of seeing them gnawed by a hungry redcap or used as juggling balls by a pooka.
- Childlings are always extremely cute, with chubby red cheeks and twinkling bright eyes. Their ready smiles win hearts easily. They usually show great interest in several crafts or creative skills (such as pottery making, sewing, singing, etc.). Their voices are bell-clear, and they always sing in tune.
- Wilders are slightly older versions of the childlings except that their cheeks are not so rosy and chubby. Their faces, while still somewhat broad, have matured into rakishness. Their eyes are very bright. Many start collections which they will add to throughout their lifetime. Most have mastered at least one instrument by this time whether they were previously aware of their faerie nature or not.
- Grumps are most like the popular conception of leprechauns. They have faces that look like dried apples—all wrinkles and creases, most of them laugh lines. Their bright eyes are lost in folds of skin as their eyebrows become bushy; even the women's. Males often grow beards. As grumps settle into their roles as elders, they focus more fully on their collections, and their accumulated "treasures" are lovingly displayed in their homes. Grumps are honored among the clurichaun as repositories of ancient songs.
- Affinity: Actor
- Twinkling of an Eye — Clurichaun have a talent for disappearing from potentially troublesome situations. Should someone take their eye off a clurichaun, even if only for a moment, the wily fae can disappear into the nearest cover so quickly that its impossible for anyone to find him or her. One minute they're there, the next they're gone! They can effect this trick even if being grasped by someone, but not if they themselves are blind-folded (or otherwise unable to see) or if bound with iron.
- Insight — Whenever a clurichaun is in a social situation (i.e., when not alone), he or she can roll their Charisma + Empathy (difficulty 7) to assess what the most appropriate response to it is. They can then say the right thing or perform the correct actions (the player may need a judicious Storyteller hint or two) to smooth things or make the situation more pleasant. Unseelie may, of course, do or say the opposite of whatever is indicated if it suits them. (Note: This does not take the place of good roleplaying. If a player is misusing the Birthright by constant overuse, she's probably burned out the talent for awhile.)
- Tippling — Clurichaun have a terrible time resisting alcohol, and whenever they tipple, they undergo a change. Those of the Seelie persuasion become maudlin and incapable of anything but singing sad songs and telling sad, often pointless, tales. To take action when in this state, a clurichaun must make a Willpower roll (difficulty 8). Unseelie clurichauns evince extreme cruelty. Their jests are barbed, their stories and humor bitter and angry. Unseelie clurichaun must make a Willpower roll (difficulty 8) whenever they drink alcohol to avoid picking a fight with the nearest person (or group).