Introducing the next of the Advanced Class Guide's new iconic characters, Quinn the investigator. While the complete rules for making your own investigator characters debut in the Advanced Class Guide this August, Quinn features in our upcoming Free RPG Day adventure, Pathfinder Module: Risen from the Sands, available at participating game stores Saturday, June 21st.
The rule of law is only as strong as the people who uphold it, and few know this fact better than Quinn.
The child of a former noble family of Galt, Quinn was raised to despise the chaos that had robbed his parents of their proper name and station, forcing them to hide as middle-class apothecaries. Yet for Quinn himself, trained as a legal clerk and never having personally known the aristocratic comforts his parents mourned, this was no true inconvenience. What frustrated him about his nation was not that power resided with the people, but rather that it was wielded in such a capricious fashion. His fellow citizens' constant false accusations and refusal to abide by court rulings—not to mention the Gray Gardeners' tendency to pronounce sentences completely outside the system—drove young Quinn to distraction.
When Quinn was 37, having recently lost both parents to an outbreak of plague, his simmering rage finally came to a head. After the ruling faction sentenced a man to death with flagrant disregard for due process, Quinn overstepped his usual role by investigating the matter himself, turning up irrefutable proof of the man's innocence. When his attempts to reopen the case were stymied, he returned the night before the scheduled execution and set the man free—only to run straight into a Gray Gardener patrol. The prisoner escaped in the ensuing fracas, and even as Quinn ran, he heard the Gardeners shouting his name.
Quinn fled for the Taldan border, knowing that there was now a price on his head. Yet despite all he'd lost, he found himself laughing—for here, in this tragic debacle, he had finally discovered a sense of satisfaction he'd been missing his whole life. He had upheld the law and defended the innocent in spite of government negligence and corruption. By working outside the legal system, he'd helped guide it back toward a righteous path. And he wanted more.
Thus began a new chapter in Quinn's life. Roaming the nations of the Inner Sea, he constantly keeps an ear out for allegations of unjust accusations or abuses of power. When he finds one, he investigates the case himself, using a lifetime of association with law enforcement agents and detective agencies like The Sleepless to help him ferret out the truth. If the legal system seems fair, he often shows up unexpectedly at the court proceedings, presenting sworn evidence and acting as defending counsel for the accused. If he finds a court to be corrupt, he takes a more direct hand in protecting the innocent. While he respects the law, he also knows that people are imperfect, and that breaking local laws is sometimes necessary in order to uphold more universal ones. Of course, his meddling is rarely popular with the opposition, and so Quinn generally moves along as soon as he's seen justice done and taken steps to ensure that the victim won't suffer further abuses.
Quinn is a genial, gentlemanly sort, quick with a joke and able to fit easily into both high society and low. His well-honed analytical mind is capable of astounding feats of logic and deduction, and he's fond of sharpening it still further with alchemical extracts learned from his parents and his own personal studies. While formidable in combat, he uses a sword cane so as not to unduly tip off his enemies to his abilities, believing that the best weapon is the one your foe never sees coming. He's loyal to his friends, and sometimes seems to have a connection in every town, yet is also wary of associating too long or too openly with his allies, knowing that his fight for justice has made him unpopular with various powerful factions.
Though now well into middle age, Quinn has no intentions of slowing down. As he's fond of telling companions, "a man needs only three things to change the world: a quick wit, a righteous heart, and a stylish coat."
James L. Sutter