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

Saturday, 11 April 2015

J is for Geldbeutel Jager

The Geldbeutel Jager1, or the "Gold Purse Hunter," was a master thief and thieves guild leader on the border of the Empire. As Helmgart rotted under a plague, the Geldbeutel Jager, a smarter and cunning thief, used the refugee situation to profit greatly from the disorganization and lack of law in the city and shanty town that sprang up outside the gates of Helmgart. 

He was also the father of Gustav Jaeger, one of the Heroes of Helmgart. However, the Jager presupposed too much when he assumed that the relation granted him a measure of political power. He attempted a plan to publicly confront the Markgraf Manfred von Rechtshausen, appointed governor of Helmgart, in the Markgraf's own dining room and force him to maintain the current state of chaos. 

The plan failed dramatically when he was mortally wounded in a fight with his son and bodyguards of the Markgraf. His life ended that night and his body was placed on display in a gibbet on the gates of Helmgart. The body would rot for weeks in full view of the shanty town as a symbol that law was returning to the region as the plague was beaten.

  1. [1] I opted to present the Geldbeutel Jager over The Holy Heart Sister Janna Ardlichmann, ex communicated Priestess of Shallya, Plague Warden cell leader.

Posted by caffeinated at 10:32 PM in d10

Friday, 10 April 2015

I is for Imhol Sor-Valdir, cleric of Hoeth and the chief librarian of Tor Taiga

Imhol Sor-Valdir was found where he was last seen alive: in a vault deep underground in ruins of Tor Taiga.

Tor Taiga in the common tongue of the Empire would have been known as The White Tower of the Stars and Northern Forest. In the Eltharin tongue of the High Elves it was Nimtor'elena Forenya Loren

Imhol was a prudent elf and heeded the astrologers of Tor Taiga that spoke of a great cataclysm to befall the forest city. He moved as much of the great knowledge of the High Elves in Tor Taiga to vault and locked himself inside to protect the "treasure." 

5,000 years later the vault would be rediscovered after unlikely heroes, part of an armed force of Wood Elves attacking the surface ruins of Tor Taiga. The attack set to destroy a Druchii party of wizards that were attempting to discover Tor Taiga's secrets in a most indirect way: travel to the past shadows of the city and observe its daily life.

While the Druchii were thwarted in their plan by heroes participating in the battle, it was the accidental discovery of in the shadow of Tor Taiga and the heroic choice to follow the Druchii "harboring in the shadow" that Imhol's rescue of the books, the location of the vault, and Imhol's fate were discovered.

Imhol was recovered and buried with honors and his memory is said to live in the most unlikely of places: the remembrancer's journal of a dwarf slayer, Mordrin.

Posted by caffeinated at 10:49 PM in d10

Thursday, 9 April 2015

H is for Harrond

Harrond was an Elven ranger with a particularly bad attitude. He was notable for his dislike and distrust of outsiders, especially humans. Often found in the company of Farrnoth, the pair could be counted on to be good interrogators; Farnoth friendly, Harrond intimidating.

Harrond was a master archer and instructed Elven rangers in the Guardians of Tor Taiga, a marital company of elves that stand guard over ruins of the elven settlement lost centuries ago to a fallen star.

Harrond's life took him to many strange locales. It is often rumored that he was part of detachment of warriors that entered a "past shadow of Tor Taiga" through an ancient magical portal. He was rescued from the past while being tortured at the hands of Druchii by a dwarf. During his recovery from the torture, though quick, he was tasked with the delivery of a lost ritual across the human empire.

Harrond's association with Tor Taiga soon found him on a Druchii Black Ark in an attempt to understand the goals of the murderous elves.

Chroniclers do not have much say of Harrond's death. He never returned from the Black Ark though part of his party did. Elven scryers spoke of knowing that he lived and that he traveled with a companion on the Black Ark for a short time. This tenuous knowledge of his survival suddenly ended and his fate remains unknown to Farnoth and the Guardians.

Posted by caffeinated at 10:11 PM in d10

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

G is for Ulrich Grubener, Priest of Sigmar, Deceased

The Most Reverend and Blessed of the Hammer Brother Ulrich Grubener, Priest of Sigmar died in a fire of his own starting in the border town of Helmgart.

Grubener was a zealot for Sigmar and sought a purity that could only be obtained though purges. He was a large, muscular man that carried a richly ornate war hammer that his claimed was blessed.

His faith, if you were to hear him say it, granted him a sense of the unclean. However, few knew that he hid a festering wound that he secretly believed granted Sigmar's sight of the Unclean One.

Visits by Grubener in towns and villages often began simple enough with initial welcome. Uncovering mutations and the cleansing of the afflicted souls by fire was met with great fanfare. It was when he soon found the ill or injured guilty of corruption that he would began wearing his welcome thin.

Then he met The Holy Heart Sister Janna Ardlichmann1 and her band of Shallyan Plague Wardens. And he soon fell for the Sister, her faith, and her own zeal for purging the unclean.

In Helmgart, he and the Sister set to burn the infested the city of the unclean inhabitants, even the innocents of the Shallyan orphanage would not be spared. Their actions had the ill omen of a rising Morrslieb. The chaos moon literally called the dead from their graves and added a complication to the planned purging of Helmgart. A complication that ultimately led to the priest's death.

  1. [1] The Sister's story may follow...

Posted by caffeinated at 8:49 PM in d10

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

F is for Farnoth

Farnoth and Harrond.

Often seen together, often mistaken for each other if only for their respective attitudes toward most, including Elves.

Farnoth is an affable, but untrusting Elven ranger. He is notable for attempting to befriend most that he meets.

He was recently part of group of wood elves that infiltrated a Druchii war effort though the use of magical portal found in the lost High Elf settlement of Cairnmere.

He returned from the assignment to travel far from the wood elf settlements on missions for his "king." He executed all of these with precision and learned a great deal about the Empire of Man that literally surrounds the last homes of the wood elves.

Farnoth was last seen by chroniclers of the last two decades in numerous cites and towns along the Grey Mountains borders of the Empire and Bretonnia. His faithful companion Harrond had a much darker fate1.

  1. [1] H will be for Harrond. Stay tuned.

Posted by caffeinated at 9:35 PM in d10