Monday, 14 November 2011

Mikelmerck - Shifty Gan

The Shifty Gan are shapechanging fey who delight in misleading humans.  For the most part these creatures are more of an irritant than a danger but some have a nastier sense of humour than others.

Shifty Gan are more closely related to goblins than elves, but are a species all their own.  They commonly disguise themselves a toads - albeit rather large ones - and lurk close to villages watching the people at work.  Their favourite victims are the greedy and foolish.  Not, it must be said on any moral grounds, but simply because the reactions of such folk amuse the Shifty Gan.

Once a victim is chosen, the Shifty Gan turns into a commonplace object and lies in the victim's path.  Often the chosen form is a container of some kind, such as a bucket.  Once picked up, the Shifty Gan turns into a bucket full of gold and hopes that the victim will take it home.  Each time the Shifty Gan is looked at, the contents become less desirable.  Gold becomes silver, silver becomes iron, iron becomes rock until the victim is thoroughly befuddled and annoyed.

This is innocent mischief for the most part, but some Shifty Gan have favoured victims.  Once marked out by them, a person can be in a lot of trouble.  The Shifty Gan may take the shape of a household pet or even a person, pulling them further and further afield before abandoning them.  Some more powerful fey seeking footholds in the world use Shifty Gan for just this purpose, helping the unfortunate abandoned soul and being invited into a home for their trouble.

Mikelmerckians say that the best way to prevent the Shifty Gan from marking them is to laugh in return and agree that each change is for the better.  They cite Goody Wend, who on finding a bucket of gold was delighted when it turned into silver as it was easier to carry, then still happier then the lump of silver became iron as that was more useful and still more enchanted when the iron became rock as she had been wanting a doorstop.  On arriving home, the Shifty Gan admitted defeat and showed itself to her.  She replied that she was truly fortunate to have seen such a creature.  From that day onwards, the Shifty Gan took to leaving her small gifts.  These did not altar in shape or form.

Number appearing:  usually 1
Armor Class: 6 [15]
Hit Dice: 2
Attacks: Claw (1d8)
Saving Throw: 14 (6 against any magic)
Special: Mimics shape, immune to sleep and charm
Move: 9
Challenge Level/XP: 3

Shifty Gan do not often attack and being intensely magical are impervious to most magic. 


  1. I love the name Shifty Gan. I got say though, the smile on the frog in that illustration sells the post. :)

  2. The illo combined with a bit of northern folklore was the inspiration for the whole thing. I saw it and knew it had to be a monster.