A Sound Of Thunder
Changelings are subtle shapeshifters capable of disguising their appearance. They evolved through the union of doppelgangers and humans, eventually becoming a separate race distinct from either ancestral tree. They do not possess the full shapechanging ability of a doppelganger, but they can create effective disguises at will. This ability makes them consummate spies and criminals, and many changelings live up to that potential.
Physical Description: Changelings strongly resemble their doppelganger lineage, with only a passing nod to their human heritage. All changelings fall within the boundaries of Medium size, usually standing between 5 and 6 feet tall. Unlike true doppelgangers, changelings do have gender in their natural form, although they can adopt any shape they like. Changelings have pale gray skin, and their hair is thin and fair. Their limbs are long and slightly out of proportion compared to other humanoids. Their faces have slightly more distinct features than a doppelganger’s, including a hint of nose and lips, though their eyes remain blank white and the rest of their facial features don’t look quite as finished as those on a human.
Society: Changelings live wherever humans do, blending in among them and living in their shadow. They are most commonly found in the large cities, where they form the backbone of the criminal underworld, though many find more respectable work as entertainers, inquisitives, government agents, and sometimes adventurers. Changelings have no established homeland of their own.
Relations: Nobody with any sense completely trusts a changeling. Many people, however, have reason to do business with them. Most members of other races treat changelings with extreme caution. Dwarves have little patience for their deceptive and subtle manner.
Alignment and Religion: Changelings of all alignments exist, but most gravitate toward the neutral alignment. They focus on their own concerns without any meaningful regard for laws or morals. Many have their own code of honor but are also fiercely independent. Some refuse to engage in assassination, while others embrace that path as the most perfect form of the changeling art of deception. Many changelings follow a personal philosophy of the perfect form, in which physical transformation is a mystical practice symbolizing spiritual purification. This philosophy is curiously amoral, and its practitioners include both assassins and saintly ascetics.
Adventurers: Changeling adventurers might be fleeing from past crimes, seeking revenge for a wrong done to them, or striving for spiritual perfection through the use of their shapechanging abilities. Others are driven to adventure through a simple lack of other palatable opportunities: Changelings who are not inclined toward crime or stealth often have difficulty finding steady work.