Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Freelands of Mirrym: Desperate Men

Gideon, Colin and Wistrom are three men who are attempting to re-invent themselves. Despite their past failings, they truly believe that they can make a fresh start in life. They just need the right opportunity.


     “I’m tired of listening to people talk about all the stuff they should have done, or could have done. In the end they did nothing and I think that’s pretty sad.”

     Gideon’s hard luck tale began a few years ago when he was serving as a guard for a mining company. During a raid on the mine he was protecting, a bandit smashed him in the head with a club. Gideon woke up several days later with a terrible headache and the loss of hearing in one ear. Gideon started drinking heavily to numb the pain and ended up getting fired. Demoralized, he began to drink even more and eventually wound up working in a warehouse.

     After realizing that manual labor would get him nowhere, Gideon got his act together. Although he’s still tempted to drink and often suffers from bouts of depression, Gideon is doing his best to improve his reputation as a warrior. In light of his past, Gideon would rather avoid employment involving guard duty. Because he’s a skilled rider, Gideon hopes to serve as a scout for a merchant caravan, or perhaps find work as a road warden. Currently, he lives in the town of Holsinger on Streele.

Gideon, male human War1; Medium humanoid (5’ 9”, 170 lbs); CR 1/2; HD 1d8+1; hp 9; Init +2; Spd 30 ft; AL CG;

     Armor: AC 18 (+1 light wooden shield, +5 chainmail, +2 dex), touch 12, flat-footed 16.

     Attacks: Base Atk +1, Grp +2; Melee: Longsword +3 (+1 BAB, +1 str, +1 weapon focus) (d8+1, 19-20/x2).

     Saves: Fort +3 , Ref +2, Will +0.

     Abilities: Str 12 (+1), Dex 14 (+2), Con 12 (+1), Int 11, Wis 11, Cha 11.

     Languages: Common.

     Skills and Feats: Handle Animal +2, Intimidate +2, Listen +1, Ride +4, Spot +1, Swim +3 (-3 in armor); Mounted Combat, Weapon Focus (longsword).

     Possessions: Chainmail, light wooden shield, longsword, light riding horse, bit and bridle, saddle bags.

Shepard McComb
     “I’m not sure which was worse, the wolves who devoured my flock or the wolf who left me when I needed her the most.” 

     Shepard recently met with tragedy when wolves tore apart his flock of sheep. Penniless, his luck only got worse when his wife left him. As she walked out the door she said, “My parents were right. You’re not a real man. A real man would have defended his flock.”

    His spirit crushed, Shepard hopes to create a new life for himself. He acquired a few survival skills while tending his sheep and would like to offer them to an employer. If he serves as a porter or lantern bearer, then perhaps he’ll earn enough gold to rebuild his flock. Shepard’s Spot and Listen skills might also make him useful as a sentry. To this end, Shepard spends a great deal of time at the Quiet Thyme tavern in the village of Camber Mill. With hat in hand, he approaches anyone he thinks will offer him work.

Shepard, male human Com1; Medium humanoid (5’ 10”, 190 lbs); CR 1/4; HD 1d4+1; hp 5; Init +1; Spd 30 ft; AL CG;

     Armor: AC 12 (+1 padded armor, +1 dex), touch 11, flat-footed 11. 

     Attacks: Base Atk +0, Grp +0; Melee: Dagger -4 (1d4, 19-20/x2); Ranged: Sling +1 (+1 dex) (1d4, x2).

    Saves: Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +3. Abilities: Str 11, Dex 12 (+1), Con 12 (+1), Int 11, Wis 12 (+1), Cha 10.

     Languages: Common.

     Skills and Feats: Handle Animal +2, Hide +3, Listen +4, Profession (shepherd) +3, Spot +4, Swim +2; Iron Will.

     Possessions: Padded leather, sling, 20 bullets.


    “I’ll give the hero routine a shot, but only if I dish out more pain than I take.” 

    Wistrom cringes when he recalls his childhood. His mother was a foul-mouthed tavern wench and his father a drunken thug. Wistrom collected bruises the way other children collected marbles. Violence begets violence, so it was no surprise that Wistrom wound up as a criminal.

     He served as an enforcer for the thieves’ guild in Perganon, but the job ate at his conscience. Rather than bust up the rib cage of middle-aged shopkeepers, Wistrom began to sell his services as warrior. Bandits tend to put up more of a fight than old ladies who won’t pay protection money, but the work is definitely more rewarding.

    Wistrom wields a longsword, but he also loves to brawl with his fists. He can be found working the long stretch of road between Venable and Perganon, either guarding merchant caravans or collecting bounties.

Wistrom, male human War2; Medium humanoid (6’ 0”, 220 lbs); CR 1; HD 2d8+4; hp 16; Init +0; Spd 30 ft; AL N;

     Armor: AC 13 (+3 studded leather), touch 10, flat-footed 13.

     Attacks: Base Atk +2, Grp +5; Melee: Longsword +5 (+2 BAB, +2 str, +1 weapon focus) (d8+3, 19-20/x2).

     Saves: Fort +5, Ref +0, Will +0.

     Abilities: Str 16 (+3), Dex 10, Con 15 (+2), Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 10. Languages: Common.

     Skills and Feats: Appraise +1, Bluff +1, Intimidate +4, Listen +1, Spot +2; Improved Unarmed Strike, Weapon Focus (longsword).

     Possessions: Studded leather, longsword.

     My Freelands of Mirrym campaign cast the players in the role of law enforcement officers. Their professions included road wardens (men who patrolled the roads), bounty hunters and investigators. As a result, all three NPCs in this article were eventually encountered by the party.

     Their characters told Shepard to get lost, certain that he’d get himself killed. They crossed paths with Gideon on the open road, but it was mostly a role-play encounter. Wistrom made the biggest impact on the party. The group’s leader, Micah, took Wistrom under his wing and trained him as a fighter. He eventually gained three levels in that class and later left the party to become a constable. Talk about coming full circle!

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