ramblings about the Cormyr campaign
Elyn of Wheloon (Born ?? 1357/1358DR probably so currently 24/25)
Elyn is an unusual addition to the Bright Blades. Of common stock she was encountered in the lands south east of Wheloon that run down to the sea. Known as the Wyvern Downs, this land is a series of rolling hills, windswept and bare and offers little except sheep farming and beet growing.
Elyn is a local lass who made her living from hunting rabbits and graywings (herring gulls), selling carcasses, fur, eggs and feathers to taverns and passing caravans in Wheloon. Known as the ‘Silent Lady’, by the common folk whose land she worked, she speaks little and has an uncanny ability to move silently in the wilds appearing ‘out of nowhere’ when she wants.
Elyn has no formal training but has the skills of a ranger. She loves to be out and about and grew quietly dismayed by the ‘civilisation’ of Wheloon and the coast lands as people flock to the growing town. They have started to sprawl down the Way of the Manticore and along the banks of the Wyvernflow. The bleak windswept land she loves started to become a little too crowded for her.
She was approached by a local trader in Wheloon to guide some nobles to Machon Blackbarrow, a sheep farmer and breeder of wirehairs (terriers) who lives close by the sea some 10 miles southeast of Wheloon. The Nobles explained about where they came from and how the land was full of trees and moors and windswept mountains, Elyn was intrigued but said nothing else, she could not imagine ever leaving the Wyvern Downs and moving elsewhere. A deal was struck between the Nobles and Machon and he agreed to send a full hand count of dogs to Thunderstone. Elyn was paid by the Nobles to help transport them there and when she arrived she decided to stay on for a little while, to explore the southern edges of the Hullack, a wild wood unlike any she had ever seen before.
She has no battle skill (the most dangerous things she has fought are graywings protecting their eggs) and only uses her club, sling and dagger to hunt, kill and skin small animals and birds. Lora-Ella Warden of Thunderstone is trying to teach her to use a bow (this is proving slow work), but the Warden has been impressed with how quickly Elyn has picked up woodlore from her. Elyn is never without her own wirehair and has proved very useful in netting rabbits, rats and other vermin that plague Thunderstone. She guides patrols of the Purple Dragon Blades into the Hullack and is developing her tracking skills quickly. She has encountered goblins, (but did not fight them) and boar which she tried to net and snare, however this did not prove successful, so she is sticking to smaller game.
Elyn is amazed that she finds herself here and keeps thinking she is in a dream, she has become a friend with Lora-Ella (Warden of Thunderstone and Lords Ranger) and looks up to her a role model, as someone that she can become, to be better skilled and liked and loved and needed as Lora is.
Dutiful and quiet, Elyn does not seek glory, coin or battle like the other Bright Blades. She does feel proud that they need her and that they ask her advice and guidance in matters of the wild. Some of them have also taking a keen interest in her hunting forays and they have acquired wirehairs of their own and go out with Elyn into the fields for a ‘day out with the dogs’, where they get to dash around, hollering and shouting and gambling with each other on whose dog will catch the most vermin. Elyn is amused by their antics, and she gets to keep all the kills made as payment for her time.
Elyn is careful and likes to plan days in advance, but is wistful and wanders off for days at a time on occasion. She is dependable and likeable, but not reliable (as in she is not guaranteed to be around. She is very reliable when she is around and does her best at all times), she has hidden talents and could do a lot more if properly trained and supported.
She looks barely older than 17 or 18 and is innocent and not worldly wise at all, speaking quietly and without knowledge of things beyond hunting, skinning and being out in the wilds, feeling the wind blowing against her and the warmth of the sun on her face.
CG HF Ranger 2
S 14; I 11; W 14; C 11; D 10; Ch 11 (her primes are Str, Wis and Con)
She is not battle trained and her BtH advances as a rogue. She does not have combat marauder or poison lore but does gain a +4 bonus to conceal and move silently. She also gets a +4 bonus to hunting prey she knows (see below).
She uses her club, dagger and sling for hunting only, not in combat and she has a padded quilt leather for protection (no shied).
Consider her an Expert not a Ranger, with appropriate skills as described above and feats in Skill Focus Profession Hunter and Toughness. Under her tutelage with Lora-Ella she will start to develop Ranger Skills (track, hit points, woodlore/survival) but without becoming a ranger, continuing to advance as an Expert. She is an exceptional hunter of certain prey (see below) and she automatically succeeds her skill check to successfully hunt if they are plentiful in the area she is in.
Consider her a ranger with the To Hit/THACO of a rogue, with weapon proficiencies as above, (and appropriate woodman/scout kit is there is one?)
Elyn is actually a ‘facetwist’ as doppelgangers/mirrorkin are known in Cormyr. She is alone and has no idea what she really is, how she came here or who her real ‘parents’ are, though she is acutely aware she is very different from the rest of the people she exists with. She was raised by a local farming familyin Wheloon who found her abandoned after the great storm that swept Cormyr during the Fall of the Gods on the night they fell to Faerûn (the Time of Troubles) and raised her as their own. They have since died of ‘white cough’ (tuberculosis) contracted during the Death Dragon affair. She has mastered the ability to change shape and form and does so every few weeks, to let out the rage that is inside of her (which is why she goes missing). Her facetwist personality and alignment is hidden from scrying and detect thoughts (ESP) when she is ‘Elyn’. It is unknown how she would appear if more powerful divination spells were used.
When she changes into a Facetwist her stats are:
S 14; I 11; W 17; C 15; D 17; Ch 6 and becomes Chaotic Neutral retaining her two levels of Ranger/Expert. She gains a +2 bonus to hit and damage on top of her normal BTH as well as 2 extra HD. Her body and mind rage uncontrollably for several minutes when she first shifts and she is aware of this rage building up for a few days or so beforehand and makes sure she is away in the wilds before she rages. After raging she has no choice but to keep her facetwist shape for several hours before she finally gains control over it and can shape back into Elyn. She is very vulnerable for the few minutes she rages and all her mental defences fall away, allowing her to be scryed and mind read successfully (of course all mind reading does is show uncontrolled chaos and rage!).
She has not slain any humanoid as a facetwist, but has killed animals and birds and this gives her the ability to take their form for a limited amount of time (about an hour a day) if she chooses to and explains her excellent knowledge of their lifestyle and habits and her success in hunting them. She rarely changes form voluntarily, (animals include rabbits, rats, graywings, mice, various field birds, wildcat and stoat, feel free to add a few more, but they will tend to be small, so no wolves or bears)
Her constant flow from Elyn to Facetwist keeps her healthy and young looking and her appearance is of a girl of 17/18 not 24. She has no blemishes or scars on her skin as shifting ‘heals’ her and rejuvenates her skin. More than one man in Thunderstone has noticed how ‘smooth’ she looks (and for one of the Blades how silky her skin actually feels), however certain ladies of Thunderstone have been known to say more spiteful things about her ‘perfect’ complexion……
She is not evil or malicious or uncaring as a Facetwist, neither is she loyal or loving or sharing, she just is as she is and knows that others would find her ‘wrong’ and a ‘threat’ if they saw her when she rages, so she makes sure they don’t.
If she was discovered (by a nosy adventuring party for instance) and confronted with the ‘truth’ her emotions would be calm and she would deny understanding what they are saying, “Sorry goodsirs, I am but a simple huntress, I do not understand what you mean”. She does not need to put on an act of a local girl who knows little, she is a local girl that knows little and any scrying, mind reading or truth magic’s cast by Wizards or Priests would confirm what she is saying is the truth. Which might make said adventuring group look very stupid and would no doubt make the local Lord Elyn has been dragged in front of for questioning most angry at having these fools waste the Lords time and make said Lord lookequally foolish in front of the local folk…….. (I am sure that creative DM’s can come up with an ongoing series of adventures for their players to ‘prove’ their claims )
Escaner Battlehawk born 1359DR (currently 23)
Escaner grew up around wealth, privilege, nobles and knights and aspired for the same lifestyle. His father was the farm manager and his mother a personal maid both in service to the Battelbar noble family, the fourth generation of ‘Hawks to serve the ‘Bars. This ongoing loyalty does not go unnoticed by Nobles and when the young Escaner showed an interest in swordcraft and horses, Lord Battlebar agreed to sponsor the young man.
He became a Purple Dragon, training at the Academy of Valiant Arms near Jesters Green. Escaner was an average student overall but excelled in fitness and physical tasks/training and was posted to the Espar garrison, as Firstsword. It became obvious to both him and his commanding officer that he was never going to be a full officer. Though strong and a good fighter he lacked the ongoing discipline, leadership qualities and tactical ‘nouse’ required to become a Swordcaptain or better. Neither of them wished to cause the Battlebar family any embarrassment, so a deal was struck and Escaner left the army as soon as he was legally allowed to. Rather then return home a failure, a letter was sent to his parents saying that he was to be posted to Gnoll Pass to guard the coal mines and trade roads from the goblins of the Stonelands.
Escaner set off east to Sembia, when asked about this by the Lords of Thunderstone, he said he went ‘merchanting’ to the Kingdom of Coin. In reality he was a paid caravan guard, though he did have enough ‘savvy’ to do some small scale trading himself buying and selling low value items, to earn a few extra silvers for luxuries. His dislike of Sembian ways forced a return back to Cormyr for this restless youth, still needing to do something and hoping that Cormyr would offer better opportunities than Sembia had.
He briefly became a bodyguard for a merchant and her family in Wheloon, but found the restriction of being ‘on call’ every moment of every day too much and left after a few months service. He did manage to make some contacts during that time and began working for a small trading coster, based out of Dawngleam, (Haerdruths Spices and Perfumery), that delivered small and portable high coin goods imported from the south (mainly perfumes, incense, cosmetics and jewellery), to various noble ladies around the Eastern Marches. Escaner thoroughly enjoyed the freedom this gave him, to ride ‘swift delivery’ around Cormyr and effectively be his own boss. He picked up an excellent knowledge of where places are and how to get to them quickly and has a wild talent in Direction Sense.
Fortunately for him he was elsewhere when Haerdruth was killed and his business burnt out by unknown outlanders who did the deed and left by a waiting ship very quickly. Once again at a loose end, he tried his hand at setting up a similar business but found that the logistics of, and coins needed for setting up such an operation were beyond him. Running out of coin and trying to find ‘proper’ work in Wheloon, he heard that there was money to be made for good folk who could ride and were handy with a blade in the growing community of Thunderstone. Escaner saw this as one last chance to ride out and make coin and quickly ‘joined up’. There he found similar ‘young blades’ with the same desires as him and this companionship has been a boon, he finally feels part of something and can see there is a future for him.
Escaner is quite plain, normal and ordinary, not ‘standing out’ from the crowd and is somewhat ‘lost’ within the group as their more forceful personalities overshadow his quieter demeanour (especially Dryn and Pedrol). However he is proving that he is competent on horseback and dependable in a fight. From his ‘merchanting days’ he faced bandits and goblins and is more ‘seasoned’ than the rest (excluding Brester). He does not ‘flap’ before or during combat remaining calm and quiet. This has helped the younger blades to panic less when battle is joined. He is seen as ‘dependable’ by the other blades and they all like him, he has enough ‘honest charm’ (charisma) that it is very hard for anyone to dislike him.
However, the Lords are not so sure about him or his dedication to the ‘cause’. In conversation with him about his past they have realised that he has a lack of focus and are wondering if his wanderlust will take him elsewhere again? (The Lords’ Steward shrewdly described him as “the nice boy from around the corner, the type that causes no trouble, but not one who will make much of himself. The boy that a mother would like her daughter to marry, to settle down with and raise a family, to have a good, safe but ordinary life”).
He rarely gets into an argument, holds no radical views and does not put himself forward. His speech sums up his personality: “I would hope we could do that”; “I would like to think that I could help”; “I am not sure but am willing to try my best”.
He is coin poor, and compared to the others this shows. His equipment and clothes are standard, normal and every day, the type that guards and low level adventurers have, they are adequate and do the job, but are missing that grandeur that good quality clothes and masterwork weapons have.
He lacks some of the social graces that the others have (small talk and knowledge skills) and becomes quite self conscious at formal sit down meals as he can’t talk politics or tactics or horse breeding or the more ‘noble arts’ of poetry, song and dance. He wants to be like the others, but doesn’t quite seem to be able to take that extra leap of confidence and actually do it. Time will tell if he manages to acquire these traits or whether he gets suffocated by the others. This is what he wants, to belong and be ‘successful’ .
For’ succesful’ read: money, privilege, to be liked and consulted on matters, to have land and horses and knights working for him and further note: not to be good or brave or do something really heroic, he believes that adventurers can do that ongoing heroic stuff, he just wants to do some heroic stuff, enough to get a name and coins and then live a pleasant successful life as a landowner and he wants to do it as quickly and painlessly and as easily as possible, but to do it properly, not by murder or theft as he is not like that, he wont take advantage of people or take things that aren’t his, though he might share in their glory if he can? But deep down he knows that he must earn it and that others have to see him earning it, but he prefers to earn it easily if at all possible).
CG HM Fighter 2
S 16; I 12; W 11; C 15; D 13, Ch 13 (primes are Str, Con and Dex)
Specialised in longsword, he has a chain shirt and small steel shield. His light warhorse is average and getting somewhat long in the tooth.
Fighter 2: weapon focus longsword, skill focus ride, iron will, improved toughness. Given his nature in later levels he will not stick to a focussed tree of feats (power attack, cleave, great cleave etc) but pick uncoordinated feats ‘as and when’. This makes him less effective at defining his role within the group.
Knowledge geography is a class skill for him and he tends to be average at most skills (i.e. he spreads his skill points out), rather than maximising in one or two skills, though ride is far his best skill.
Fighter specialised in longsword, (no fighter kit). NWP in ride, direction sense and geography
Direction sense: he has the ability to judge where north is (outdoors only) and is also an excellent judge of distance and position in areas he knows (i.e. Hultail is over there in that direction, less than a mornings ride away and the Ghars road is to the southwest from here by Thundshold hamlet). Consider him to have a +4 bonus to any check that involves not getting lost/finding the right path/knowing where the nearest village is etc
Pedrolynth Glimmergold Born 1364 (currently 18)
Second son of a successful merchant of Wheloon, Pedrol learnt a lot about Cormyr by travelling around with his parents. Able to provide him with a personal tutor, his family ensured their son had a good and decent upbringing, because of this Pedrol has developed an interest in History, Nobles, Geography, Riding and Trading (especially horses, pottery, glassware and jewellery).
Physically large and tough he is quick with his hands and feet, and when angered is handy with his fists. Pedrol has a sharp business mind and is always looking for the business angle in any opportunities that present themselves to him.
Aged 14 his family moved to Espar as his father decided to trade in horseflesh. In Espar he met his best friend Forlyth Dauntinghorn, a groom to the aging Lord Hezom. He liked the older boy who was learning his riding and knightly skills and they discussed nobility and history. They struck up an immediate friendship and Pedrol became his unofficial squire learning riding and horse care from him whilst Pedrol showed him how to play chess and how to speak to girls.
When Pedrol became of age they decided to leave to leave Espar and find their ‘fortune’ in Cormyr. Their journey was blessed by a Priest of Helm (who was visiting the Sentinel Stone) and they swore a blood oath and became brothers. Pedrol has since become the ‘master’ in their relationship and Forlyth the ‘squire’. Fortunately Pedrol is not malicious and does not take advantage of his friends’ lack of wit and unquestioned trust and loyalty in him.
Money is not a problem for him, but he has learnt that money can’t buy respect or nobility, the two things he craves the most. Pedrol is ‘mildly jealous’ of his friend and his family name and wants to achieve nobility himself, (or at least enough coin so that he can buy a title!). Rarely separated from each other, Pedrol lets Forlyth do the initial talking when they meet new people giving him time to judge and assess them before he steps in and takes over. He has a ‘nose’ for sensing trouble and also for being in the right place at the right time. A War Wizard and Local Watch commander both noticed this when the two uncovered a smuggling operation in Wheloon, after careful scrying and prying to ascertain their true motives the Wizard suggested to them both that their fortune might be made further to the east and north serving the Lords of Thunderstone and quelling the evils of the Hullack.
Pedrol is half Turmish (from his father’s side) with a tan complexion and dark black curly hair which he cuts short. He keeps a short beard in honour of his father and has green/hazel eyes. He is gregarious and friendly and can chat for hours about not much. He is sharp as a pin when it comes to money and has secreted funds in various places across eastern Cormyr to fall back upon if needed. He keeps no map but has a rhyme to remind him when things are. His easy charm and conversation makes him a favourite with ladies, (and he manages to find a lady for Forlyth as well). He speaks many languages and endeavours to learn more on his travels. Though not lawful, he adheres to the oath that he and Forlyth swore and considers Forlyth his true brother.
NG HM Fighter 1
S 17; I 16; W 12; C 12; D11; Ch 17 (primes are Str, Int and Cha)
Specialised in Broadsword, he has masterwork chain armour and steel shield. His wealth is that of a Knight and comes outfitted with a superb light warhorse of maximum hit points. An accomplished rider he has the ability to leap and charge like a Knight does.
Appraise, Bluff, Sense Motive and Diplomacy are class skills for him (he loses swimming, jump & climbing), as well as points in ride and languages. His feats are improved unarmed combat, mounted combat and Skill focus Profession Trader.
Fighter class with specialisation in broadsword, NWP in trading and riding, plus languages
Forlyth Dauntinghorn born 1361 (currently 21)
A knightly noble type, his father is cousin to Hector head of the family. Forlyth is loyal to the Crown and Cormyr and he has surprised many in his family and at Court by actually doing something and ‘riding out for Cormyr’.
The reason for this surprise is that from an early age it became apparent that Forlyth was somewhat dull-witted and as he entered his teens it was obvious that he was not the ‘sharpest blade in the scabbard’ as the Purple Dragon veteran assigned to the Dauntinghorns as weapons tutor/head of security told Lord Dauntinghorn after a fruitless summer of trying to teach the boy fighting techniques, military tactics and military history. When finally allowed at Court his lack of wit did not gain him many friends in the competitive environment. Through family connections they got him as job as apprentice ostler to the ‘Horse Master of the Court’ and Forlyth found something he could do, ride. A serving Purple Dragon Knight took a shine to the young enthusiastic boy and taught him further riding skills. An observant War Wizard noticed then when he spoke to the Knight about his loyalty to Cormyr and the Crown he spoke truth, so he was sent to the Royal Stables in Espar where his slow witted persona would not hinder him as much as it did in Suzail.
In Espar he fell in with a young lad 3 years his junior (Pedrolynth Glimmergold), whose father was a successful merchant who had spread his wings to buying and selling horseflesh. The two hit it off straight away and became good friends. Pedrol looked up to Forlyth and became his ‘squire’ learning riding and the caring of horses from him. When Pedrol became of age he convinced Forlyth that they should seek their fortunes in the service of the Crown and became sword brothers blessed by a Priest of Helm (who was visiting the Sentinel Rock) and swearing upon a bloodied blade, to stand ever vigilant against the evils that beset Cormyr, to guard the weak and oppressed and be ever watchful of corruption.
Forlyth has a child-like innocent charm about him; many are taken aback by his honesty, but are equally impressed by his forthright belief in ‘doing the right thing’. He is tall, just over 6’ with a large round face. He is surprising quick on his feet for such a big man. His lack of wits makes him easily led, especially for the ‘right cause’ (Pedrol keeps a sharp eye out in case the good cause happens to be a bad one).
Forlyth has taken the ‘squire’ role to his younger friend and relies on Pedrol to do the planning for both of them. He is a good honest knight who believes that all good Cormyrian folk should do their duty for the Crown. He will offer his sword to any who need it and upholds all the good virtues of a knight. He reveres Helm and Tyr.
LG HM Knight 1
S 15; I 10; W 8; C14; D 17; Ch 13 (primes are Con and Dex and Cha)
Wields a lance and horseman’s sabre (+1 to hit with sabre whilst mounted) and uses a heavy crossbow at times. Excellent rider (consider giving him a +1 bonus per level)
Fighter 1 with horse feats, will take all horse feats first including mounted archery (special: even if he doesn’t qualify due to stats/other feats required), has no skills apart from ride and handle animal horse, (he effectively loses any spare skill points).
Cavalier or appropriate knight kit (Fighter), weapon specialisation in horse sabre, NWP’s in ride and handle animal horse
Brieanna Tolon born 1362 DR (current age 20)
Brieanna was left fatherless when her father, Lord Steelmar Tolon died defending Azoun from the Death Dragon (see DoTD page 270). At a memorial ceremony to remember the dead she met Ardryn Braerwinter whose father, Lord Edryn Braerwinter died at the same time. Because of their mutual loss, their respective mothers became friends and the families became close spending several summers together at each others estates.
At 14 Brie was sent to the House of Grace School in Suzail, to ‘finish’ and prepare her for life at court. She learnt much in her time there excelling at poetry, embroidery, dancing, singing, etiquette and heraldry. However after 4 years she was claustrophobic and felt hemmed in by constant classes in deportment and the History of the Realm so when she was finally presented at court and ‘graduated’ she knew that her scholarly life was over and she would be able to have fun for a change. However, court life did not prove exciting or fun and she quickly grew bored of the constant gossiping, one-upmanship and backbiting she encountered and found she spent more and more time out in Suzail on the Promenade and in the country outside of the walls atop horseback, (often being pursued by young noble lads’ intent on wooing her with poor poetry and cruder talk).
Her salvation came during the Spring Revel of 1382 DR (the first great social event of the year held by the Court). Her childhood friend Ardryn (Dryn as she calls him) appeared at court as the new head of his family to present himself to the Steel Regent, Dowager Queen, and Crown Prince Azoun, with him was an up and coming noble Brester Orthwood. The two had become friends at the Wheloon Horse Fair in autumn 1381 DR and Dryn had wintered on the Orthwood estate, where they had both planned and plotted to break away from traditional family life and do something ‘important’. Brie and Dryn took off just where they had left each other 6 years ago and when she heard of their dreams and schemes she at last found something she wanted to do. Leaving her position at Court, she followed the two ‘boys’ as she calls them east and north to Thunderstone where Dryn had heard that a great summer hunt was to take place.
Brie found that she enjoyed spending times with the two bladeknights and discovered a love of the ‘wild lands’ of eastern Cormyr. She is becoming an accomplished rider and is developing her innate wild talent for tracking and basic ‘wilderness lore’, (in other words weather conditions, places to rest, where to find water etc, not hunting or shelter building or herb lore).
Brie has become the rock to which her two knights stand against, her natural intelligence and wit has helped them to get along with a wide variety of folks and also to get out of one or two tricky situations they have found themselves in. She tends to let them two get on with it and just follows enjoying the fun. Normally last to speak of the three, she rarely disagrees with either of them in public, but quietly pushes them to a better solution if they are going down the wrong path (in confidence and not in front of people). Those who know her realise that she is the glue that is keeping the three together and makes them a more formidable group (the ‘Triswords’) than they are as individuals.
Her friendship with Dryn has grown to love and she is bright enough to realise that Brester is slowly falling in love with her also. She cares not a jot that Dryn has sold his lands and is a coinpoor Knight, only that she wants to be with him. She is hoping that Dryn makes his feelings known very soon, before the burgeoning feelings that Brester has for her makes life difficult for the ‘Triswords’, to whit she is constantly looking out for a good lady for Brester to meet and court and if no good ladies are available, a local lass that will take his mind off her for awhile will do (this is not something he unduly minds!). She is careful to make sure that no one apart from the three know of Dryn’s financial state and no talk of her and Brest providing for him is ever mentioned between them.
‘Fair of face and full of grace’ appropriately sums up Brieanna. Her finishing in Suzail has given her the life skills she needs to talk to people and enjoy entertainment with them in song and dance, and her ‘adventures’ on the roads of Cormyr has grounded her in much needed commonsense and sparked a true love for the land in which she dwells.
Her riding and tracking skills make her a perfect horse scout and she is starting to learn to use a short bow to provide artillery support for the ‘boys’ as they go charging off after whatever has come out of the Hullack to threaten the local populace. She is not one to get herself into combat, but will do so if Dryn or Bres are in serious trouble. She has a masterwork dagger for such occasions
NG HF Horse Scout 1 (similar to the Horse Rider from Netbook of Classes)
S 12; I 16; W 16; C 13; D 17; Ch 15 (her primes are Int, Wis and Dex)
She has a wild talent giving her +2 to any tracking/wilderness lore roll (at DM’s discretion increase to +3 at 3rd level, +4 at 5th etc)
She is a good rider and can adequately use a short bow and dagger.
Consider her an expert, not a ranger, with the appropriate skill choices and feats (Skill focus Ride, Track). She does not have the temperament or training to be a ranger and although she likes the wilderness, she prefers civilisation just a little more.
Choose fighter but without specialisation and an emphasis on NWP’s in Ride, Endurance, Singing/Dancing, Tracking (or appropriate ‘Kit’ from a splat book if there is one?).
Brester Orthwood born 1360 DR (currently 22)
Caveat: have appropriated Brester for my campaign so the timeline and his description might be somewhat different from Dragon Annual 5 in which he first appeared (which I don’t have and have not read).
Brester has been described thus: “considered an up-and-comer, the most restless and competent son of the house”. He has a fairly sharp mind and quickly ‘gets the point’ in any conversation. He is a good rider and a personal tutor ensured he has a good knowledge of politics, battle tactics and warfare. He can debate history and the useful application of mathematics and engineering confidently and plays chess extremely well. He speaks dwarven, gnome and halfling passably.
He is not though a natural speaker and is not overly forceful when debating, but he gets his point of view across articulately. He has dark features, is not classically attractive and can look ‘dangerous’ at times (though certain ladies at Court find this look rather attractive). Many think him arrogant and aloof when talking to him as he seems to ignore them. In truth he is normally thinking through what people have just said rather than interacting with them. He understands not only what they say but also their underlying sentiments and what they failed to say and is therefore ‘filling in the blanks’ in the ongoing intrigues and schemes that folks are involved with. He also possesses an excellent memory for conversations from years past including the full tone, pitch, accent and ‘hidden’ meanings of what was uttered.
Money does not appear to be an issue to him and he always manages to conjure up a few coins to pay for food, drink and lodging. In reality he has a wild talent of being able to absorb coins into his right hand where they stay waiting to be recalled (they are not physically in his hand, but elsewhere in a small dimensional space, his hand is just the ‘door’ to the space). He can ‘steal’ coins in this way but rarely does unless the person has offended him, or he thinks them pompous or evil or just too rich to care. He never ‘shows’ off this talent, he always reaches into a pocket or small purse to retrieve coins he thinks about. He cannot take other items and store them only minted coins of copper, silver and gold (he currently has around 3000 coins stored, most of them a gift from his family when he left). He cannot handle platinum at all, he is overcome with nausea if he picks up a Tricrown and if he continues to hold the coin he will pass out and go into shock. The extent of this talent and how he came to have it is unknown. No one apart from his father and the family wizard know of this ability and no one in the family has ever had a similar ‘trick’. They do not discuss this as no doubt the Crown will hear and very soon a War Wizard or three will make an appearance for an informal chat……..
Like many of the ‘young stags’ at Court he wanted to prove himself, and unlike most he has actually acted upon this desire, but only after careful thought about the consequences of his actions, not only to his own reputation, but to those he is with and most especially on his family and how it might affect them at Court and with the other noble families. He left his family on good terms and is always welcome back. This forethought and ongoing displays of intellect and good manners has persuaded more than one loyal courtier and War Wizard of his worth in the ‘Bright Future of Cormyr’ when Azoun V becomes King.
He rides with Ardryn and Brieanna because he seeks to understand Cormyr better and its people more fully. So that in the future when he ascends to a position of power in his family he can be more effective in ruling and shaping them. He is also seeking an appropriate mate, one who has the intellect, wit and spirit that matches and challenges his own. Currently Brieanna Tolon is foremost in his thoughts and he is carefully pondering how best to approach her without ruining their firm friendship if she does not feel the same.
The oldest of the Triswords does not make him the most sensible and he relishes the opportunity to chase after Ardryn when he has one of his regular ‘flights of fancy’. Brester is near fearless when facing down foes having spent a year in the Eveningstar Garrison as a Blade in the Army, fighting goblins, wolves and trolls of the Stonelands. He was offered a commission as a Lionar but turned it down as he was “not yet ready to dedicate myself to Cormyr, I fear my breeding will bring doom to my men” which left the Onrion who had offered it to him lost for words and proud at the same time. Because of this time in the army he is the most competent and calm of the Triswords and knows when a battle should not be given but avoided, (however convincing Ardryn is another matter!).
His equipment is the best that money can buy without being ostentatious or showy. He places little worth is showing off his wealth or ‘parading like a peacock’ like so many of his contemporaries do.
His future is uncertain, a few of the more prominent members of Court are hopeful he continues to progress without becoming as arrogant and cruel as most of the other nobles seem to. Perhaps Lordship of Eveningstar or Tyrluk for the Crown is in the offing in a decade or so?
NG HM Fighter 3 (primes are Str, Int and Wis)
S 16; I 14; W 13; C 15; D 9; Ch 11
Is an excellent rider despite his poor dexterity (legs only due to the shaking fever he contracted when he was just a babe, his legs did not grow firm and his knee joints are fused, his effective dexterity for hands is 14). Is specialised in Longsword
Fighter with good ride score including skill focus ride, skill focus in sense motive, weapon focus in longsword, skill focus in diplomacy and skill focus Knowledge Engineering, knowledge skills as above.
His armour and weapons are all masterwork. He is not a swashbuckler or similar ‘fancy style’ fighter type. He is soldier who has served his time and can’t be bothered with ‘this high-nose fighting nonsense that achieves nothing but to impress ladies of the court and get one killed’. He said this to his sword tutor the first time he met him (aged 11) when the tutor started to teach him to use a rapier, Brester snapped the blade in two and picked up a longsword instead.
Fighter specialised in Longsword, NWP in riding, etiquette, and engineering.
Ardryn Braerwinter Born 1363DR (currently 19)
Ardryn was left fatherless when his father, Lord Edryn Braerwinter died defending Azoun from the Death Dragon (see Death of the Dragon page 270 By Ed Greenwood and Troy Denning). At a memorial ceremony to remember the dead he met Brieanna Tolon whose father, Lord Steelmar Tolon died at the same time. Because of their mutual loss, their respective mothers became friends and the families became close spending several summers together at each others estates.
Worshipping Tempus (and Tymora, although he doesn’t think he does), Ardryn is a ‘leap before you look’ knight. Committed to a better and safer Cormyr, he wants to give battle to the ‘evils that threaten us all’. He embodies all the compassionate and helpful knightly virtues and volunteers first before thinking (or asking his companions!). Tends to take the initiative and get into the thick of action first, (whether that is conversation, feasting, challenges or battle). Becomes very expressive with his arms emphasising points and ‘talking to all’ (loudly) when drunk. Good hearted and caring, he wants to prove himself to the ‘wider Cormyr’ (read: Court) and do his family name and fathers memory justice. He is not worldly wise yet, trusting people and taking them at ‘face value’. His mother died in 1381 leaving him the only member of his family, unable to pay for the upkeep of the estate he sold it and invested all his money in armour, weapons and his horse. He fell in with Brester Orthwood and presented himself to Court early is 1382 DR (See Brieanna’s entry for more details).
Though poor, he will not ask for help or payment for tasks undertaken and is supported on the road by Brester and Brieanna (this is never discussed outside of the three and not even between them). He want to find a noble Lord and give his service to him or her, (Noble as in: good, truthful, honest, been there/seen it/done it person who shows all the ‘proper’ knightly virtues).
He hopes that through service he will earn his name and find his path. As well as earn an income and a bride to raise a large family with which to keep the Braerwinter line going. He finds Brieanna most attractive but knows that Brester likes her and is unsure whether to ‘press his claim’ or not (the only time he does think before asking!). He is currently in Thunderstone having offered his sword to the Local Lord in protecting the populace from the “Horrors of the Hullack, the Thunder Peaks and the Vast Swamp” (‘biting off more than you can chew’ is not a phrase that Ardryn understands….)
Tall (6’2”), good looking and honest, his zeal for life gains him many friends and he can be relied upon to help and support any who are suffering, in need of help or who are ‘good types’ (as he sees it), without thought or cost to himself or his friends who ride with him. He is suspicious of those who seem ‘less than honest’ and is slow to let them into his life if he judges then ‘wrong’ (even if they are good). He judges people quickly, at first sight and forms an opinion straight away. So he is therefore sometimes incorrect about a person’s true spirit. He keeps his equipment clean and serviceable and is always looking to get better equipment and clothes. He is immaculate at all times (if possible), though an observant Wizard of War noticed his wardrobe may be grand but it is rather limited (a cause for concern? easily bought by Sembia perhaps? So the Wizard thought and so seeks proof to back up his theory)
Has an innate wild talent of being more resistant to poisons (though not alcohol despite the volumes that he drinks most nights if he gets the chance). Tasch of Tymora has met Ardryn and recognises that he is of the true faith of the Lady Luck, though he knows that Ardryn does not agree, especially when Ardryn made his thoughts known to the ‘meddlesome priest’ during the summer Revel in Thunderstone.
CG HM Knight 2
S 17; I 11; W 11; C 14; D 14; Cha 14 (primes are Cha, Dex and Con)
Is an excellent rider and wields a large horseman’s mace, lance and two handed sword in combat.
Fighter class with emphasis on riding feats, improved toughness, great fortitude (and a poison save feat if there is one?). Weapon Focus and specification in lance and mace.
Cavalier class or similar kit, weapon specialisation in lance and/or horseman’s mace (he prefers to fight from horseback, getting off only if he has to with his two-handed sword). NWP in Ride, Endurance and singing/oration.
Tymora has smiled upon him and he has maximum hit points for his first 3 levels.
He has a wild talent giving a +4 bonus to poison saving throws.