Below are each of the characters my gamer’s play. The images were selected to represent the DM’s perception of what the character looks like.
They are described by Aaryk Arkleson, proprietor of Arkleson’s Shop of Magical Things and former Warrior of the Third Mark (unit commander). He used to be the C.O. of several of these folks…
Carik? You mean old Spook. Yah, he’s got some Orc blood: I guess that’s part of what makes him as tough as he is. Independent, too: half the time I’m not sure why I trust him, but I do. He’s not big: a bit over five and a half feet tall, maybe 175 pounds or so. You can pick him out in a crowd with that white hair of his. Nope, he’s not grimacing: those are his canines.
Back in the service I never got a good handle on where he reported. I get the impression it was something in Special Ops like my unit, but sort of an individual scout. It seemed to suit his temperament: he could make his way through the woods like a wolf, and he seems to respect the forest more than most foot soldiers.
Carik is definitely not a “by the books” soldier. There aren’t many that are good enough to serve in the military without being directly attached to a unit, and I’ve got to say Carik was good to have around- when he was around. Mind you, I sometimes wished he would have gotten lost trying to find us, what with the kinds of orders he sometimes delivered.
Carik can swing a sword pretty well, but I’d have to say his main strength is versatility. I’d guess he could make a weapon out of some stiff linen and a door handle, and probably beat you silly with it too. And he seems to think like a fox: sneaky, cunning, and hungry. If you think the right place to take cover in is behind that table over there, he’ll be strapped to the rafters. You figure that old sword over the mantle is a good weapon? Carik, he’d probably drop the chandelier on your head instead, then cut your throat with some razor wire he probably keeps tied in his loincloth. Oddly disciplined, though: like I say, full of surprises.
He’s got some small magics about him: maybe some cantrips, or a magic item or three. I see he’s picked up some kind of fancy whip since I was discharged: can’t say I know much about it, though. Do I trust him? Damn right I do. I don’t know whether you should, though.
Yeah, I’ve known Ceril for a while. Back during the war, he served as the chief healer at the field hospital at the Chasm garrison. I think he set the hospital up, too: he’s one of the “good guys”, but I guess the orange robes of Osfrigga kind of give that away. I guess he’s a bit over six feet tall, maybe two hundred pounds or so. Like me, he’s no longer a kid: he’s getting some snow on the roof, and I think that some of his chest has found a new home to the south. He’s still in pretty damn good shape, though, and most folks wouldn’t even notice his pot belly under those robes and that armour.
He’s high priest of the Temple of Osfrigga here in Chasm, although I really think the place is run by his second in command. Although Ceril is well-respected in town and even the town council seeks out his advice, I’d say Ceril isn’t really suited to being an organizer or a leader. I figure he’s more of a field surgeon. I know he likes to take on new challenges, and to save a life where maybe someone else would be stymied is what gets his blood flowing. I’ve noticed there is more spring in his step since he started back adventuring: I think the church calls that “field assignments” or “outreach” work.
I also know he can put a pretty dent in your head and knock you out cold with that staff or mace of his if you don’t stay in line. Yah, you are right: he’ll just have to fix you up again if he does: although he’d probably have you tossed in the local jail before you come to.
The first thing you notice about Rydia is her intensity. She always looks like she’s about ready to draw that sword of hers and settle some kind of score. And big? Over six feet tall and muscled like a mountain lion. Damn, I wish I had her build: belay that, I’m happy enough being a man. No, no, she doesn’t look like a man, not unless its dusk and she’s got her shield up. And I’ve seen her practicing without armour: if I still had my legs working, and were twenty years younger…
So, there Rydia is, big and strong as that horse of hers, looking right ready to let some daylight shine on your innards. Then she reaches down, pets and coos at some damn stray cat, or gives a little kid some candy. She seems a bit wide-eyed at times, like a lot of things are new to her. Although I figure Rydia can handle herself, and has probably seen more hardship than a person her age should, she seems like a lost puppy at times. I don’t know her whole story, but I can surmise she had to grow up young.
I also know a real master trained her in how to use that sword of hers: like I say, I saw her practicing. Rydia treats it like a part of her body. You watch some warriors, even damn good ones like I was, and they swing a longsword like a club. Her, its like she’s a sculptor or painter, and that blade is how she expresses herself. Just you watch yourself, and avoid a quick and painful art lesson.
I’m studying magic, you know, and that young lady Septra is about as inspiring as you can get. No, just a second there: I am not a dirty old man. Sure, she’s assembled like some adolescent’s dreams: over five and a half feet tall and leggy like a fawn, with that Elven cast to her features and that long, red hair tickling the small of her back. And the way she flutters those long lashes over those violet eyes: well, I can see where you got the wrong idea. What I’m talking about here is her mind: sharp like a razor, and concentrated like light through a magnifying lens.
And here’s something to splash some cold water on your passions: Septra could probably burn you to ash where you stand with a single spell. Not a blink of hesitation either: she’s cool and controlled, like nothing can touch her. No, she’s not quite up to taking a seat at the Guild table of the Sages Arcane, but she’s on her way.
All that fancy packaging looks to be wrapped around some, well, less pretty contents. I’ve only known her for a little while, but from what I can gather she’s not above lighting a cat on fire to test her calculations on feline combustion rates. Evil? I think that’s a little strong- maybe misguided, self-centered, contemptuous: a bit of all of that. She seems to play the flute pretty well, though, and they say that a musical talent speaks well of the soul…
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Everybody loves halflings. The little guys who live in quaint little burrow-towns, and always have a full larder and a fat tummy. Vito isn’t your typical halfling, okay? He didn’t grow up in a quaint little town, he grew up in the slums of Hilgolden. I figure he probably had to do some pretty unpleasant things just to keep his tummy full, let alone fat. He’s short like most halflings, maybe three and a half feet or so. Nothing else really stands out about him: where he came from, standing out wasn’t always healthy.
Vito is quick, quiet, and damn, is he ever artful. I’ve seen him balance four daggers ready for throwing in one hand, another dagger ready to throw in his other hand, with another dagger in the air, all while balanced on a rope strung 50 feet across a 60 foot drop. I seem to recall that a couple of the daggers were poisoned, too. In the army he was pretty much always my “first in” man. I could trust him to come back alive, with no one in the enemy camp the wiser, and probably with the C.O.’s current orders in his back pocket.
The other thing about Vito is he understands the line between right and wrong. He also knows when and how he can step across that line, and is damn good at getting back to the “right” side without too much hassle. Just don’t leave any valuables unattended unless you are really in his good books.