Thursday, 23 April 2015

T is for Tegort

Tegort is typical of most Empire fostered Ogres: big, hungry, and tame, mostly. Raised with his kin in the docks of Altdorf, Tegort worked as a porter unloading and loading boats arriving in Altdorf.

How he happened to meet the Heroes of Helmgart is told in the popular autobiographical volumes of one the heroes, a high elf, as translated by Magister Stehmahr Von Althausen.

It is said that Tegort was hired and acted as the bodyguard of one Maximillian Morningglory, a devout Halfling Sigmarite, now rumored to be in the "Renegade Crowns" of the Border Princes.

Tegort traveled far and wide with the heroes according to the translations. He was often a source of money troubles with the heroes trying to feed the ogre. Tegort was once almost drown by assassins in cloaks of wet rat fur (a passage of the translation that agitators in Altdorf claim proves the existence of the "Skaven" but censored by Imperial confederates of the race of "rat men"). Most notably is how often the Halfling ordered Tegort to the front of the line in many battles. Von Althausen suggests in many footnotes that the Halfling considered the Ogre fodder or a pin cushion (though this is without any supporting evidence in the translation and appears to be von Althausen's "academic reading" of the material).

Tegort returned to Altdorf according the journal. The journal makes no further mention of the Ogre, however translations have not been completed.

Some have sought out Tegort in the docks of Altdorf, but have never been successful in actually finding him. The translations of the heroes have never provided an identifiable trait to attribute to Tegort. His legend among enthusiasts of the elven journal grows with each volume.

Posted by caffeinated at 11:59 PM in d10

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

S is for Skalfkragella "Ella" Karginsdottir, Priestess of Valaya

"Ella went mad, friend. She watched Helmgart wallow in plague and probably watched it burn from the cliffs of the Grey Mountains. The dwarfs guard Durbermann's, curse him," the speaker pauses and spits in the dirt, "...quarry to keep the crazy Hexe far from us. Hopefully she starved up there.

Skalfkragella, or simply Ella, is a priestess of Valaya that disappeared in the cliffs over Helmgart. She went into the cliffs with the Heroes of Helmgart to seek a lost tome of healing that held a promise of curing the plague.

The tome indeed returned with the Heroes, but Ella was never seen again. Today, what really happened to Ella is a mystery. Rumors that she lives in the cliffs practicing hedge magic are told to scare children, but some take it very seriously. Some say she was killed in locating the tome. Others whisper she was murdered by the Heroes to claim credit for finding the tome.

Posted by caffeinated at 2:23 PM in d10

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

R is for Rutiger von Suderberg

Rutiger from Suderberg is the friendly proprietor of the aptly named Friendly Harbor, an inn, in Eldagsen on the River Delb.

His father is known locally as an antiquities collector favoring Dwarven items from the area around the Howling Hills, some of which grace the main hall of the tavern.

Rutiger insists on offering the finest, warmest baths on the river and dabbles in distilling grain into vodka. Though to hear him tell you of the craft of making vodka, his spirits are weak by most standards.

Posted by caffeinated at 10:10 PM in d10

Monday, 20 April 2015

Q is for Durbermann and Son's Quarry

Durbermann's quarry is high in the Grey Mountains that rise in near shear cliffs to the north and south of Helmgart. Accessed from the Durbermann and Son's Stoneyard via steep switchbacks, the quarry is well-protected from threats by a high wall and tall buildings that over look the entire site. 

When the quarry was in use, its large rocks are loaded on sleds that were lowered by mule, ox and paid laborers that manage a complex set of block, tackle and wheel to lower the heavy sleds down the switchbacks to the stoneyard.

The quarry has all but been abandoned today. Durbermann was hung by a mob and the path to the quarry from the stone yard secured from use by a dwarven clan of Helmgart.

Editor's Note: business travel interruptions prevented a post on Monday, April 20 proper (no post was queued)

Posted by caffeinated at 11:59 AM in d10

Saturday, 18 April 2015

P is for Oswin Pellensteiner

Oswin Pellensteiner's story is one of high peaks and low valleys.

Oswin was often a drunk in the past. His drunkenness led to a life where he often found himself on trips to places he often did not want to go. Passed out on a deck of one boat, a crew would dump him at a river tavern or put him out with other unsuspecting crews.

In one of these pressganged-by-proxy bouts with drunkenness, Oswin found himself on the Bianca with Ludovic Hasselhoff. A nascent captain Hasselhoff found Oswin to be a competent boatman if he could be kept sober. A soberness that came at what may have been both Oswin's lowest and highest points in his life to hear him tell it.

While ransacking berths on the Bianca for some alcohol—hidden by a zealot Halfling—Oswin inadvertently was affected by warpstone. An encounter that left a foot cloven and hoof-like. Oswin was confronted by the halfling upon the discovery of the mutation. Left begging for his life, Oswin's taint was cleansed by Udrin Sor-Valdir, and his encounter with the halfling was forgotten. The elven cleansing left Oswin sober for a brief time.

Oswin manned the Bianca for years with Hasselhoff and the halfling. He finally returned to Eldagen on the Delb to settle down with a woman and a child that he long hinted at as being his estranged wife and family. He returned to them a less poor man and sober almost a decade.

Posted by caffeinated at 11:13 PM in d10

Friday, 17 April 2015

O is for Otto (and Pieter)

Otto—and Pieter—are two local goons in Stimmigen. They are very typically picked up by the watch when questioning or accusing the "usual suspects."

They'll friend almost anyone that will buy them a drink. And that means that their tongues are often loose and their loyalty very flexible.

Buy Otto—and Pieter—a drink sometime at The Bucket to hear their impossible tale of meeting the Heroes of Helmgart. Sober towns folk of Stimmigen dismiss the tale for either knowing the often tall tales of an Elf, a Halfling, a troubadour from the Grey Mountains saving Helmgart and thus dismissing the idea that they could have even visited Stimmigen so far from the Grey Mountains or just because Otto—and Pieter—are drunks that like telling others of their brush with fame.

Indeed, it did happen. But the real story is said to be recorded in the Remembrancer volumes circulating Altdorf of the Heroes. The Heroes were in Stimmigen, but they encountered two other thugs. These thugs, Johann and Heinz, were killed in the Bucket. Not by the Heroes, but by a gambler and rake named Waldemar. Otto—and Pieter—are unnamed in the recorded tales, but it is said that two others joined the deceased to kill the Heroes. Otto—and Pieter—escaped with their lives that evening because their feckless loyalty was bought with a drink. 

Posted by caffeinated at 10:34 PM in d10

Thursday, 16 April 2015

N is for Dietfried Niederlinz

Dietfried Niederlinz is a stern veteran and sergeant of the Emperor's armies. He is a man-at-arms to House Hofstetter, a noble house from Altdorf. Niederlinz joined the Knight Ehrwig von Hofstetter ostensibly to restore the Emperor's order to the border region with Bretonnia.

The real reason is adventure. The chance to acquire wealth outside of indentureship. 

The Niederlinz family is a vassal to the Hofstetter family. No opportunity to advance socially or  increase the family station in life is missed. Even, if unsuccessfully, to marry into the Hofstetter family itself. 

Dietfried has been a constant companion and hanger-on to Ehrwig for years and the decision to travel to Helmgart was answered before asked.

It is said that in Helmgart, Dietfried has the Markgraf's ear. Ehrwig, leaving with the motley collection of the "Heroes of Helmgart, and lead by a Bretonnian Knight," is rumored to have left his retinue in Helmgart to return with treasures from the Grey Mountains. The "Heroes" have absent from Helmgart for months. Deitfried has leveraged his "loose" association to a new family advantage that may soon have his name on letters read by the Emperor himself.

Posted by caffeinated at 11:40 PM in d10

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

M is for Max Willowwand

Max Willowwand was a Halfling beggar in Ubersreik.

Not much is known about how Max, and his friend Thomas Alepuddle, came to be beggars in the city, but they were good at it and could often be found looking to enlist others in the "trade."

Max and Tom had a semi-legitimate job pushing broadsheets for a racist and shadowy agitator in Ubersreik. The agitator, known as Richter von Reiklander, used a local printer that would make sure the broadsheets would be passed out. Max and Tom of course made a show of passing them out, but could reliably be found burning them in barrels in the alleys to stay warm. They made pennies for the work and would waste the money in alley taverns.

Tom tells a tale in the alleys of Ubersreik that Max died in the maul of the Angel of Justice, a daemon summoned by a coven of witches that rampaged on Geheimnisnacht. Indeed an accounting of that evening by the Temple of Verena says that the torso of a local halfling was found on the street near Unterbaum's Paper and Ink. No name was ever recorded and the death was never investigated.

Posted by caffeinated at 9:08 PM in d10

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

L is for Leopold Butterstotch

Before Ludovic Hasselhoff captained the Bianca, Leopold Butterstotch welcomed paying guests.

Leopold ran the Bianca from Delberz in north Middenland on the River Delb and to points east and west on the Rivers Talabec and Reik. A common waypoint was the Delb Ferry at the confluence of the Delb and Talabec.

It was at the Delb Ferry that Leopold would lose his life to witch1. Leopold and members of his crew would be unceremoniously murdered, their blood allowed to pour freely over the decks as the witch searched the berths and belongings of his fares.

The witch left, uncaring, ample evidence of her actions in bloody hand and foot prints on papers, doors, floor of the berths, and the length of the halls.

It is unknown exactly what the witch sought in her search and she was never encountered again. Ludovic would take advantage of the deaths to claim "salvage rights" of the Bianca moored on the River Delb. With no one to challenge or cite the finer points of Empire law, the barge was released to Ludovic and his companions.

  1. [1] The witch was known to the party as one seeking revenge for the destruction of her coven by members of the party. She sought knowledge of the party's destination so as to act on plan of revenge. Leopold encountered her searching the berths and met his match. The witch practiced a hedge magic that strengthen her body and quicken her step. She swiftly killed the crew and left before finding the information she sought.

Posted by caffeinated at 2:08 PM in d10

Monday, 13 April 2015

K is for Sister Perdita Kless, Sisters of Shallya

Sister Perdita Kless is the personification of the sisterhood of the Cult of Shallya and a heroine of Helmgart in her own right. But her character has but one flaw: her heart has been given over to a priest of Verena and Hero of Helmgart, Gustav Jaeger.

During the plague of Helmgart, Sister Kless was charged with the care of the growing number of orphans in the closed city. It was great news that the sisterhood of Shallya was sending trained plague nurses and the cult temple welcomed them along with the Helmgart leaders.

Unfortunately, the trained nurses and the Holy Heart Sister Janna Ardlichmann turned out to be Plague Wardens, a zealot arm of the Cult of Shallya that sought to purge plagues by cleansing fire. The "wardens," aided by a corrupt Priest of Sigmar, began burning Helmgart, starting with the temples of every cult in the border city. 

Sister Kless stayed in the orphanage and led the children to safety. It was then that she met Gustav Jaeger.

The two carried on a long distance "affair" during Jaeger's travels "rooting out a sinister evil." His letters continually grew bizarre, even lecherous, as he spoke of visiting ancient cities of elves and learning secrets "lost to elves given over to chaos." Jaeger's letters lost nearly all modesty shortly after.

Sister Kless and Gustav were reportedly reunited and left Helmgart together. Sister Kless writes her friend Hildegart in Helmgart often and says that Gustav is the same Gustav she fell in love with, if his appetite for the carnal is increasingly adventurous. Hildegart has asked Perdita to be careful that Gustav has not been corrupted by Slannesh.

Posted by caffeinated at 1:51 PM in d10