Article of the Week: Nym

The Nym are a race of humanoid elementals, each from their respective planes. They are small and lack the power of the greater elementals, but possess extraordinary abilities of their own. Though they are gender neutral, most Nyms chose an either feminine or masculine form, depending on their personality. A standard Nym stands about 6 to 8 inches tall and are composed almost entirely of their natural element. This can vary a great deal, however, as some have been known to be as small as a drop of water or as large as a blazing bonfire.


Air Nym

An air nym

An air nym

Air Nyms are NOT Sylphs

Also called Whisperwinds or the Whispering Wind, Air Nyms are beings composed of Air. In their purist form they are invisible to normal detection, but can be seen if, and when, they take other substances into their form such as dust, smoke, water, or small particles. Air Nym are graceful beings that enjoy dancing and playing. They are somewhat shy and usually keep to themselves, but this does not stop them from interacting with others.

Whisperwinds are a repository of mundane knowledge and delight in sharing it with others, though their intent may not always be as pure as the wind that carries them. They enjoy spreading rumors or breaking secrets and watching the resulting events. They are very knowledgeable; a Whisperwind can communicate with others of their kind for miles and have an unworldly knowledge of events and history, though they usually only share it with others if they think the results will amuse them. Air Nyms usually communicate through song, rhyme and riddles. Straightforward truths are reserved for only the most deserving.

Air Nym have the ability to fly freely and can easily conceal themselves in the air. They have extremely beautiful voices, as well, which they use to lure potential victims into potentially dangerous situations. A captured air nym can be used for personal entertainment or coerced into giving information, assuming one could convince them to perform.

[edit] Fire Nym

A particularly bright Cindersprite

A particularly bright Cindersprite

Commonly known as Cindersprites or Cinderlings, Fire Nym do things with passion. Cinderlings have a voracious appetite for anything they can consume, but this is diminished when they are involved in other activities that they enjoy. Cinderlings love using their powers to create and typically use them in the areas of cooking, smithing, pottery and anything else they can take part in. Fire Nyms are envious of others and do not like to be outdone or tossed aside, usually going into a fit of destructive rage and giving in to their desire to feed. This is usually short lived as their competitive behavior forces them to work harder to outdo their rivals.

Among Nym, Cindersprites are one of the few with the ability to fly, thanks to their small, light, burning bodies. They are also the only nym that can easily change their size, usually based on the amount of material they can consume. Some have been known to increase to eight feet in height before burning out. An increased size usually results in increased hunger and increased focus.

Fire Nyms can also change their color usually from the result of consuming something impure or based on their mood. A blue Cindersprite is one that is very focused on a task. While normally red in color, a cinderling may change to yellow at increased temperatures or even green during an impurity.

[edit] Water Nym

A Sessperite

A Sessperite

Known as Sessperites (Elven for Sea Spirit), Water Nyms can be found in lakes and streams, but prefer small secluded ponds and other small stable water sources. They usually keep to themselves and prefer to be left alone to their duties. Outside of those that have made claim in the Material Plane sessperites rarely leave their home plane of water.

Water Nyms loathe impurity and seek to purify and clean dirtiness off of anything they can. A singular nym may attempt to purify a polluted lake by themselves, especially if they have already claimed it as their home. Sessperites also have the power to clean wounds and remove contaminates from water and living things. They are prized in medical facilities for these abilities and enjoy helping out. A sessperite, however, will refuse to help with these chores if others consider it their duty or if it is considered their job by others. An offer of payment is insulting to a water nym, though gifts are accepted.

Water Nyms are very emotional and prone to depression. It is not uncommon, though it is difficult to tell from a distance, to find a water nym crying due to uncleanliness or some other trivial matter. A depressed nym will usually refuse to do any task and sees most things are out of reach or impossible to complete. Sessperites hate being bound and it should be noted that a bottled sessperite has the potential of flooding and exploding any container they are placed in due to their elemental nature. As such, water nyms are capable of increasing or decreasing their physical size usually by crying and absorbing their own tears.

[edit] Earth Nym

Earth Nyms are usually called Earth Wardens. They are sometimes confused with Brownies since they can be the same size and have similar colors. Earth Nyms usually like to play the role of guardian whenever they can, protecting their land and those that they allow to live in it. Earth Nyms usually live in dry areas, but can occasionally be found in muddy grounds or even in civilized areas. An Earth Nym that lives in a muddy environment will usually have a Water Nym companion.

Earth Nyms are both stubborn and sturdy. They stick by their causes beyond most reason. If they feel they are right, they will do everything they can to support their idea and defend it. Even when it is clear that their stance is obviously inaccurate, they may findThis, of course, can make Earth Nyms very difficult to negotiate with.

Earth Nyms are capable of moving large stones and rocks many times their size with greatest of ease, though this ability does not expand past non-earthy materials. They can bend and shape metals and are very keen at separating ores.

[edit] Ice Nym

[edit] Lightning Nym



Also known as Scintilla, Lightning Nym are small little erratic elemental beings. Lightning Nym move from place to place often, never staying in the same location for a long time. They usually stop when something of interest sparks their fancy, but this interest is fleeting and once it fades, the nym will soon move on. The short attention span, in attention to Lightning’s natural hyperactivity, is this Nym’s largest flaw.

Scintilla, however, have an excellent sense of direction and are great navigators. They always know exactly which direction is True North and using their natural powers they can quickly and easily locate the shortest path of least resistance to a destination, especially when searching for what these nym call “shinies.” Scintilla’s impatience comes into play when they attempt to guide someone, however, as they are unwilling to wait for their followers to keep up and do not consider that they may not be able to travel the same paths that they can.

Lightning Nym are unsurprisingly attracted to Earth Elementals, especially Earth Wardens. These Nym are possibly the only thing that can hold a Lightning Nym’s attention for a reasonable amount of time. Lightning Nym are extremely hostile towards Water Nym that have an Earth Nym mate.

[edit] Idea Origin

The nym are suppose to be the opposite of normal elementals. Rather than huge, imposing beings with phenominal cosmic powers, the nym are small and ordinary. The nym are given special qualities that make them unique, however. Anyone can do the things that a Nym can do, but it takes a lot more effort and training for a regular person than for a Nym. They also have significant flaws that make it more difficult to exploit their traits.

The word “Nym” is uniquely generated. I wanted a word that was short and to the point and I like the way this one sounds. I never intend to use the pun antonym.

Michael McElrath

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