Characters: The Irregulars
Voyage of the Wanton Wench (2017-2018)
Scallywag, what else can be said of a man who’s name you just can’t remember. He gave me his name just moments ago... Hmmm, no matter.
This stranger has gypsy blood of that there is no doubt, and yet with his speech and skills with a rope - he knows his way around a ship. He looks average in height and build, and I think he has a tattoo or scar on his cheek. Most people tend to ignore him, however there are other unsavory characters who are drawn to him. He is good at sleight-of-hand and loves to entertain others enchanting them in his gypsy spirit. This stranger is quick to pick-up a conversation and always interested in knowing who you are. He is one who never forgets a name which is odd for I cannot remember his.
I only wish I knew more.
The Happenings at Hookhill (2010)
My mother, Ursula Allos, had a difficult relationship with her parents being an only child. She fell in love with a gypsy man, Arthur (nicknamed Rusty for his thick, cinnamon brown colored hair). They ran away and were married. My grandparents did NOT approve and wanted to get my mother back.
I was born under a full moon. I have cinnamon brown hair and beard like my Dad's. I'm allergic to silver, mistletoe and Mountain Ash. I have a curiosity of the night sky and have always felt a bit different.
One night while I was out exploring, my Grandparents appeared at my parents' wagon and grabbed my Mother. The three of them ran along the ridge of a hill. When my Father catches up with them, a fight ensues with my Grandfather and Father fighting on the ridge while my Grandmother and Mother struggle nearby. As my Father pushes Grandfather off the hill to his death, he looks over just as his wife, my Mother, loses her balance and falls backwards over the cliff. Grandmother grabs at my Mother snagging her locket, its breaking chain being the last thing holding her to this world.
With the moon rising over the ridge, Grandmother throws the locket down and curses my Father and his children and their children. "You are a BEAST and a BEAR of a man. Now, you will always stay this way." Then trembling, she jumps off the hill to her death.
After Dad told me this sad tale, I went back to the crest of the hill and found my Mother's locket hanging on a bush. I put her locket on and will never remove it.
IN MEMORIUM. A young gnome of the Knotbrew clan, Snivelbum dresses in fine clothes and wears a beret like hat (the current rage among high society gnomes). Very polite and proper, he seems to be very connected to the ruling families of his gnomish homeland, and expects to to be treated as such. He claims to have the favor of the king himself, and was at the battle when his compatriots fire bombed the orc strong point on the hill. His purpose traveling in the more human lands is as an ambassador of all things gnomish, and wishes to mix with the higher society humans in the realm. He favors his unusual pistol crossbow and short sword in battle, but prefers to handle things diplomatically if at all possible. However, if goblins, orcs, or kobolds are involved, his hatred of these races overcome his high value of his own well being.
As the eighth child of the Lord March, Octavius knows he isn't likely to inherit much power, so he is honored to serve for his father at the Black Owl Garrison. With the knowledge that his older brothers will inherit power, Octavius has decided to put his family's influence to use in other ways. When young, he dedicated himself to a clerical order, there learning the importance that reading and accounting play in moving a (new) economy, such as may develop in a castle town. Not usually having the responsibility of power, he has partly dedicated himself to social pursuits among the common people, not as a ruler but to learn from them; sort of a link to the people. He seems very popular. He believes in helping others learn as he did, and he sometime donates money to such causes and schools. The growing castle town will need such people.
Leave me alone.
How did I, Farnsworth Finefoot, become a hobbit wizard? Let me tell ya'...
It was a warm summer day, and I was killin' time. I was playin' sticks n' crabapples with three other young hobbits from Orchardview Hill. I found a particularly sturdy, well-shaped stick under one of the larger crabapple trees on the hill on the east side of the field. I swear that little stick could hit crabapples all the way from the Elderberry Downs practically to the Tang Empire. I'm tellin' you it was a good stick. I wasn't bad either if I don't mind braggin' a bit, and I rarely do... mind braggin' that is. After a few swings, I thwacked out the longest apple of the day, maybe of the entire summer. It went a little right of where I was aimin' though. Okay, it went a lot right of where I was aimin'. It landed smack in the middle of the immaculately groomed front yard of Master Milo, a very old, solitary gnome whose cottage outside the village of Pembridge was located precariously close to our field of crabapple trees. Of course Flumsly dared me to go get the crabapple out of Master Milo's yard, and without thinkin' I said "No big deal." Turns out I couldn't have been more wrong.
I scurried over the low picket fence landing softly in the yard. A giant mouth instantly appeared outta' thin air. A low voice bellowed from the mouth, "Who goes there?" I heard shouts behind me and turned to see my friends runnin' as fast as they could 'cross the field back towards the safety of their hobbit holes in the Elderberry Downs. Flumsly was strugglin' hard not to pull up the rear. For some reason I stayed put. I didn't say a word back to the floatin' mouth though. It didn't seem logical to reply. I mean, the mouth didn't have ears or nothin'.
"Are you a deaf hobbit or just a stupid one?" came a softer but equally stern voice from the cottage door which suddenly stood wide open. A small gnome dressed in black robes that shimmered with a bit of silver was silhouetted against the warm light coming from the doorway of the cottage. His left hand grasped the middle of a finely carved staff. The bottom of the staff dug into the ground for support and the top of the staff was capped by the figure of a 3-headed dragon that leered down from nearly a full foot above the tip of the pointy, green hat on the gnome's head. I mustered up the composure to respond to him in my best grammar. "Top of my class in reading and writing," I replied.
"Not stupid and not deaf either, a bit of courage too," the Master responded. "Not bad for a hobbit. You need to work on your aim with a stick though."
He chuckled briefly to himself before a naturally sour expression returned to his face. He then calmly flicked a finger and my record-distance crabapple vanished from his flawless yard. He beckoned me to come inside.
I sat in a soft chair while the Master climbed up on a tall stool behind a desk that was abnormally large to belong to a gnome. The human-sized, cherry-wood desk was covered with quills, paper, and lots and lots of small, peculiar objects. I noticed animal statuettes, cups, sticks, balls, feathers, gems, keys, and various rectangular and triangular shaped scraps of metal among other unidentifiable knickknacks. I waited a minute in uneasy silence, then broke the silence with a question:
Me: "How did you make the crabapple disappear, Master Milo?"
Me: "How did you learn magic?"
Master: "Do you wish to learn?"
Me: "Yes I do. Who wouldn't?"
Master: "And what use have you for spellcasting?
I thought about conjuring servants to do my chores, being the fastest and strongest so that I could win every game, impressing girls, and knowing answers to my teachers' questions before they asked them.
Me: "It might help me protect my family."
Master: "Really?" (He stared right through me.)
Me: "Um, yes. There are many dangers in The Realm these days."
Master: "What do you know of danger, young hobbit?"
Me: (after a brief pause to regain my composure) "I know every tale of the Heroes of The Realm by heart. The legends of the three kings: King Vincent Fleetwood, the Invincible One; King Ernest Goodfellow, ruler of Dragonsford; and King U-Gene, the Dwarven Lord. I know about the companions of the kings: the great cleric Fuzzwort; Falstaff the Druid; and Hylax the Barker, gnome wizard. I know about their adventures through time, battling gods and armies, traveling across seas and journeying to the Land of Shadows and to places outside of space and time. I know..."
Master: "You know nothing! Nothing important about the dangers that exist, dangers that are not mere legends, but real dangers, and much nearer than you think. As for me, I know Hylax the Barker. Not only in legend... I know him personally."
Me: "You really know him?"
Master: "We gnomes call him Hylax, KingMaker. He is the oldest, wisest, and most powerful of all the heroes of The Realm."
Me: "More powerful than King Fleetwood? It's rumored he has a magical sphere that can make castles crumble."
Master: "Who wants to make a castle crumble silly hobbit? What use is that?"
Me: "Well, it'd be pretty amazing to be able to..."
Master: "As a matter of fact, King Vince does have such magic. All of the Heroes have powerful magic that they have earned "battling gods and armies" as you say. More important though, is the wisdom to use magic wisely, to use it for the correct reasons. Without knowledge, power is folly. Tales of war and adventure rarely mention anything of true heroism."
Me: "I want to learn the knowledge that you, Hylax, and the Kings possess to use magic properly. Then when I have learned that well, I wish to learn to cast spells, useful spells."
Master: (with a wry smile) "Not so stupid indeed."
Me: (with an equally wry smile) "Number one in my class."
Master: "I sense some chaos and mischief in you, not unlike an old friend of mine."
By the time I left his cottage, Master Milo had agreed to teach me magic and tell me all about the exploits of Hylax. He taught me every day for two and a half years until I left the Elderberry Downs to find and fulfill my destiny. He would not teach me dark magic or any magic that could be used to inflict harm. "To kill," he always said, "is easy." "Leave that to the humans, dwarves, and ogres."
So that's how I became a wizard. What my future holds, I don't know. It will depend on my skills and wits, and the courage of the companions I choose. Hobbits have a long history of bravery and noble actions belying their small stature. No hobbit that I am aware of has ever joined the Wizard's Council. Two of the greatest heroes in the history of The Realm, King U-Gene and the wizard Hylax, are of the diminutive races. Farnsworth Finefoot, the Hobbit Hero... has a nice ring to it. Could I one day be an apprentice to Hylax? A replacement? Not likely given the limited powers that I have been taught by Master Milo compared to the awesome powers of the Heroes. However, he did teach me how to outwit and outmaneuver my enemies, valuable skills to be sure. Who knows, maybe during the course of my adventures I'll find a powerful weapon that shoots magical missiles or blasts fire. Watch out if that ever happens. My childhood friends thought I was dangerous with a stick and a crabapple.
What would the Master think about my musings on missiles and fire?
"Tsk, tsk, tsk... I'm going to keep an eye on you, hobbit."
All that is known of Ghul is from a letter accidentally left behind.
We seek a half-orc who travels under the name Blackwood.
Return to Tegel Manor (2005-2009)
Six brave adventurers set out to solve the curious happenings of the ancient manse, Tegel Manor, and the dark and tangled trees of the Dreadwood. As their story begins to unfold so many questions are yet unanswered, so many mysteries unsolved.
Rescued by Dan the Dim from a shipwreck nearly a decade ago, Avery grew up in the confines of the Dagda orphanage. He barely survived his ordeals at sea and the loss of his family in the process. Avery has little recollection of the time before the orphanage. He grew up a sickly child, by dwarf standards, not putting on much weight and his beard has yet to fully grown in. By Avery’s standards the food served in the orphanage was horrible, either portage or mush, neither of which is appealing to a dwarf let alone any hominoid. He was teased often being called a beardless Gnome or Halfling by the other orphans and towns folk. This often resulted in the other children with black eyes. It was only after the town experienced a string of disappearances of cooling pies and other baked good that Avery started to fill out and his beard grow in.
Over the last several holidays Avery has had the opportunity to help prepare various meals excited over the spices and dishes that where prepared. Lately he has acquired his own set of cooking utensils and dabbles with preparing any dish that seems the least bit appetizing. Most would say that he over spices to the point of poison and his combinations of “food” leave a lot to be desired. Avery has recently started to venture outside of town gathering all kinds of ingredients including rodents, insects, moulds and wild mushrooms.
Not truly knowing his family name Avery has taken on the famous McIlHenny family name as his own claiming to be a descendant of the famous fighting chefs. Avery has a typical dwarf temper, never one to turn down a meal or a pint and always out to have others try his latest kitchen creation.
Things would be a lot less complicated if I could remember anything prior to my enslavement by the minions of Harek Bloodaxe. Unfortunately, my earliest memory is a vivid image of a thick wooden spoke on a massive, horizontal wheel. I pushed the spoke each day until my feet and hands were bloodied, my body ached, my skin blistered under the heat of the sun and the whips of my captors, and my mind went black with the boredom of endless repetition. I never spoke to the other scraggy captives pushing the adjacent spokes of the giant wheel.
I couldn't forget that memory if I wanted to. It was my life, hour after hour, day after day for uncountable months. The orcs and foul undead creatures that composed the forces of Harek Bloodaxe's army had no problem forcing even very young children into service when there was work to be done. They used any means necessary to ensure that the wheel creaked steadily along on its endless circular journey. For me there was no war, no good versus evil. There was a wheel, a spoke, and pain. A series of ropes, pulleys, and gears connected the axel of the massive wheel to a wide belt with iron buckets attached to it. The buckets rose with the turning of the wheel through a crack in the dusty earth. Less fortunate slaves toiled below ground filling the buckets with whatever minerals the earth would surrender. Such was life before General Axeworthy and the heroes of the realm defeated Harek.
Many of my fellow slaves were killed shortly before the fall of Harek. I would have surely been among the slaughtered had I not been rescued by Ellindell and Aryishia Farshot, my parents. Are they my flesh and blood? They saved me from death and raised me as their own. However, I do not appear to be fully elven so how can they both be my parents? Memory of my early childhood eludes me, leaving me with the reality that I may never know my true heritage. To this day, they refuse to answer questions about my origins insisting that they are my parents. I tried to explain to them that it is the mystery that drives my desire to know the truth, not the need for any other parents. Either they are just being extremely stubborn or they are trying to protect me from something.
My parents bribed the orcs with a large sum of gold to release me from the slave camp. I don't know how a fletcher acquired such a large sum of currency during a time of general poverty. In fact, I know of only one source of wealth capable of producing that much gold, and it resides in Tegel Manor. In addition, I cannot overlook the fact that I am driven towards the order of Paladins like the lineage of the Manor. Perhaps there is a connection. Perhaps my imagination has gotten the best of me.
Evil continues to infest the entire region. I fear it has infiltrated Tegel Village as well. It seems impossible that a lawful society ruled by the forces of good can ever regain control of this area. It certainly isn't a fair fight at the current time. If I am to help, I must attain skill and power. Tegel Manor is a good place to start. My gut tells me that my destiny is tied to the Manor. And if my gut is wrong ... I'll always have my music.
The ogre, whose birth name is Zern, was born in foothills of the Shadowyarn Mountains in the area known as the Vile March, a wild and desolate land ruled by the overlord Grarg Dwarfstomper. His parents belonged to the Black Heart warband, and it was expected that their son would grow to become a great warrior. He was small for his age, but not unusually so.
Early in his life, Zern's mother realized that her son had very poor distance vision, a death sentence in the competitive training ogres undertake to become warriors and members of the tribe. In teaching her son to hide his disability, Zern's mother also realized that her son was unusually smart. While other ogre children were torturing dwarf prisoners, Zern would draw pictures in the sand with sticks and collect rocks of different minerals. Zern quickly learned to hide his interests and pretend to be a normal ogre boy. He even escaped detection at javelin throwing by memorizing the shapes and locations of the targets the night before his coming of age ceremony.
During this time, Zern made another discovery. At first assigned to and then later volunteering to feed the dwarven prisoners taken on Vile March raids, Zern befriended an old dwarven warrior, Billi. The grizzled veteran, familiar with the basics of the ogre language, taught Zern many dwarven words, eventually telling him of dwarven history and heroes. Zern was instantly fascinated. The ogre even bought some old dwarven books being sold by a raider returning from the destruction of a nearby village. Secretly, and with the help of his friend, Zern learned to read the dwarven language.
It was at the time of his coming of age ceremony that Zern made a life-changing decision. After being offered acceptance into the warband with the honorific Bookwurm, Zern declined, invoking instead an ancient and little-used rite. He declared himself Adhun, or alone. This rite was typically invoked when the son of a warchief wished to leave the tribe and form his own clan because the ogre population in the area was growing too numerous. Usually, the warchief's son would be granted ownership of the appropriate number of ogre men and women to start the new tribe. In Zern's case, he had no rights to companionship, so he left alone. Zern was exiled by Grarg Dwarfstomper, and his name was stricken from the records of the Black Heart warband. In abandoning his tribe, Zern forfeited the rights to his name taking instead the dwarven word for ogre, Rukhs.
From his homeland, Rukhs made his way across the Shadowyarn Mountains, stopping to visit several dwarven villages. At the home of Billi, Rukhs told his widow of the dwarf's capture, torture and death. So moved was Billi's widow of the ogre's kindness that she gave him a weathered stone tablet. The tablet told of an ancient dwarven expedition to the Reaches during the Second Age called the migration of the Bluestone dwarves. This expedition sought mithral on the northern shores of the Inner Sea. She told Rukhs that Billi had often spoken of making an expedition to find the Bluestone dwarves once his military career was over. Now, she told Rukhs, that adventure was his. Years passed. Rukhs undertook extensive study mastering the ancient dwarven dialect and learning the ways of his adopted race. Finally, the time for adventure had come.
Making his way east, Rukhs finds himself in Tegel Village. Just west of that strange town, an ancient ruin lies in a swampy moor. Untended since the Second Age, it shows great promise to be the homestead of the Bluestone dwarves. An initial foray almost ends in disaster as Rukhs is ambushed by a party of hostile orcs. Two subsequent attempts to get to the ruins end the same way. Why are the orcs guarding the ruins? His poor eyesight and the general distrust of the villagers have given the ogre no choice but wait. Quietly, Rukh studies his books in the local pub waiting for adventurers to aid him.
Thistledown is a fey creature of the court of Queen Phoebe of the Eldritch Woods. In human terms, the Eldritch Woods is tiny, just a sliver of the Dreadwood where the Darnby River forks before cascading into the Inner Sea. But to Thistledown, this small copse is her entire world.
Thistledown was born on a Midsummer's Eve seven years ago, a sprite in service to her queen. Her days are spent guarding the fairy ring, a small circle of stones around the base of a hollow hill. While her queen, the court and the night fey sleep, Thistledown "guards" the forest, which mostly consists of playing tree tag with the other sprites, tormenting squirrels and the occasional human visitor, eating nectar, and frolicking. Each night, as the queen wakes, Thistledown makes her way to the ring and watches the splendor of the evening's court comes into session. After some dancing and a few words from the queen, Thistledown usually falls asleep to the sound of music, soft and faint, floating up to her perch high in the trees. Near dawn, she wakes. The sound of merriment has died to the sound of rushes blowing in the wind. The day creatures of the forest are starting to stir, and Thistledown assumes her post.
The human reckoning of time does not adequately measure the passage of days and months and years in the fairy world. But, to the best of her recall, Thistledown noticed a change in her queen several months ago. It was subtle at first. The queen, always being given gifts by the denizens of the woods, was wearing a necklace which shone in a blue-black light. Each night, the darkness grew and each night the court became more somber and lethargic. Even her fellow sprites seemed to spend more time during the day napping in the sunshine than playing amongst the boughs. Only Thistledown saw the transformation.
One night, with trembling wings, Thistledown approached the queen. Timidly, she reported what she had observed. The queen looked up, her head had been drooping as Thistledown spoke. Phoebe's words were clear and strong, but with an edge not heard before. "Thistledown, you have called me false. For that, you are banished from the Eldritch Woods!" With that proclamation, the queen fell fast asleep. As her guards and retainers began to drop in a catatonic slumber, Thistledown fled. Out of the woods she soared until she spied a human village. An ugly, sprawling mess of homes and animals. For three days, she circled the town. Each time she tried to return to the Eldritch Woods, she felt sleep starting to rush over her, and she fled. At night, she dreamt of snakes attacking her queen. Not the friendly snakes of the forest, but huge misshapen creatures from deep within the bowels of the earth. Finally, she entered Tegel Village.
In a rush, she headed to the human's meeting place, the White Horsed Sleigh. She told her story to the human leader, as he poured her some nectar from a large spout. After a few sips of the brew, Thistledown slept. When she awoke, a hundred humans had crowded in to see her. So she has stayed for the past days. Drinking the human brew, which seems to keep the evil dreams at bay, and telling her story to the humans, begging them to help. Her queen is under an evil enchantment. Someone must help her break the curse.
|Evan Granger||Hune Grimhaft|
|76% Done||Information lost. Or was it? Stolen?|