About Harmose Al-Nefer
"It is only fair, since I am asking you your stories, to tell you a bit of mine. Mine starts with a ghost, and that ghost... well, it was me."
BACKGROUND / PERSONALITY
Harmose is from a good family fallen on hard times.
He was born Kareem Al-Nefer, the only son of an extremely well-connected family. His mother's dabbling in politics led to an assassination attempt; one that killed not the mother, but the child. Even more traumatically, the villains responsible animated the child as undead, forcing his body to do horrible things while his spirit watched on.
More Details on Kareem's Undeath:
The necromancer Sethotep allowed demons to play with the boy until the child swore he would do anything to make them stop. With this coerced consent, he turned Kareem into wight spawn.
Wight spawns have intelligence but no volition. They must follow their master wights wherever they go, destroying all in their path. While undead, Kareem relished the task of draining people and ripping their souls apart -- for the best parts of him had already fled.
Creating an undead means ripping apart a soul, eliminating some parts and replacing others. It's a horrific thing.
Breakdown of a Soul:
The ancient Osirians knew that the soul was not a single united item, but a complex and many layered wonder.
* Khat - the physical body, representing the mortal part of the soul
* Ka - the vital spark, representing the astral form. Ghosts are ka personified.
* Ba - the personality and psyche, and literally the power
* Khaibit - the soul's shadow, and easily the most mysterious part of the soul. Closely associated with the Ba and regarded as an integral portion of the human being. Like the Ka and Ba it partakes of funerary offerings; and is able to detach from the body, with the power of going wherever it might. Adepts can have it come and go at will.
* Akhu - the immortal part of the soul. Only formed when ka and ba have reunited in the heavens. Effectively the ka and ba are reborn as an outsider.
* Sahu - the incorruptible spirit. Like the Akhu, this portion forms after judgement has been passed, and seems to be another portion of the soul reborn as an outsider.
* Sekhem - the personification of life force, which lives in the heavens with the Akhu.
* Ib - the heart, and the source of thought, intention, morality, and will.
* Ren - the true name, representative of the individual. A vital guide on the journey to the afterlife, but also the most vulnerable portion of the soul, as its destruction would undo all other portions.
What happened to Kareem's Soul:
Kareem's Khaibit, containing Kareem's lost childhood innocence, fled ahead of the trauma, saving what it could of the best of Kareem, and running for its life.
The newly made wight lost his akhu and sahu, entirely. His sekhem was replaced with negative energy, and his khat and ib were corrupted. His ka and ba were bound, unable to effect change. At least his ren stayed safe, or at least until it could be restored with the resurrection.
The Rescue and the Rebirth:
Kareem's grieving parents had the child's body rescued. Finding it cost one fortune. Bringing it back another. As for getting it resurrected... That was the most expensive of the propositions.
Several of the churches (including Pharasma) refused to do a resurrection on child who had once been undead. They warned Harmose's parents that they might be bringing back a monster.
In desperation, Kareem's parents turned to the old ways finding a temple of Horus. Horus had also once risen from the dead, and the priests offered to try the resurrection if the parents promised to dedicate their son to Horus. Harmose's family paid for the resurrection, though the final cost ruined them. Kareem Al-Nefer was reborn as Harmose, a name which means, "Son of Horus."
The recovery was traumatic:
The child spent months relearning what it meant to be human, while his reunited soul processed the horrors that had happened. Nightmares were frequent. So were incidents where the child would hide in a dark place and refuse to come out.
This all changed one day when Harmose's parents found the child clutching a rabbit. "Her name is Wenet!" It was the first smile that they'd seen on his face since his return.
"Where did you get that rabbit?" his mother asked, cautiously.
"From here!" The young Harmose opened his arms, and the rabbit bumped up against his skin and melded into a stylized Osirioni pictograph tattoo on his arm.
His parents worried over the appearance of an obviously supernatural creature with a child who had been tormented by demons. Particularly since that creature left a mark on the child's skin. However, the sight of their child laughing and playing again soon calmed their fears.
Harmose went everywhere with his rabbit, including sleeping with Wenet's warm and furry body heavy on his chest. With her there, the worst of his nightmares stayed far away, and the boy could finally sleep through the night.
Harmose as an Adult
Harmose has buried the trauma of his undeath under a veneer of optimism, charm and pleasure-seeking. Having died once, he wants to experience all life has to offer. However, he still has nightmares over what happened so long ago. He is quite honest with his friends that he does not fear normal death. Undeath is a different story.
Regarding his family, Harmose has many mixed feelings. On the one hand, he feels obligated to bring back wealth and wonders to repay them. On the other, he is angry with them for having endangered him in the first place, and then trying to hush up what happened afterwards. Almost defiantly, Harmose is determined to let perfect strangers know that he's been resurrected.
Coming back from the other side awakened his affinity with the undead. He doesn't know if he had a vampire somewhere amongst his ancestors, but he does know that he has a stronger than normal ability to affect undead.
He is a charming, lying flirt -- but he is serious about keeping his team safe. He is very loyal to those he has committed to. He is aware that he lacks some of the skills and education needed to be a searcher of antiquities -- other than a smooth tongue and some knowledge with magic, he has little in the way of useful skills. He believes that he can learn on the job whatever is needed.
IN HIS OWN WORDS
"Death doesn't frighten me, and the voices of the past... well, I have this deep feeling that they may hold answers for me."
"Ipeq is in Osirion, though on the very border near the foothills they call the Bosom of Isis."
"Sometimes in the winter we would even see a little snow fall, though it would melt the moment it touched the ground. Ipeq's one claim to fame (other than having the largest garrison in Osirion due to our border status) is that its mountains are the chief source of ice -- for iced coffees, sherberts and the like -- for hundreds of miles around."
"I'm as Osiriani as they come... but I positively wilt in the heat."
Tattoos and Magic:
"Wizards do magic. Sorcerers are magic. My gift manifested after... I came back. These little tattoos began manifesting on my body. Each one is a spell that I know. They appear to be inked, but sometimes they move and change. My parents thought that maybe I was destined for the priesthood, since all the symbols are ancient Osiriani pictographs... And they had prayed to Horus for my return. They even renamed me in his honor."
"But my magic is entirely arcane. I know that it is an extension of my will... but it is also something organic, instinctive."
"All this is a long-winded way of saying that magic manifests in the physical world in very different ways. Mine appears in ancient Osiriani symbols. It's a reflection of who I am, deep inside..."
In a letter to his best friend:
Starting cash: 100gp
Hot Weather Outfit (aka "The Bedsheet") -- Free
On Evil and Teamwork
Harmose respects teamwork and talent. He himself is not evil, but he recognizes that searching for the arcane mysteries requires a special mindset.
Sexual orientation of the character
Bisexual, Polyamorous. Harmose is attractive and a flirt. He likes both men and women, though he tends to like men a little more. He thinks not in terms of sexes he can date, but in terms of personalities. He values intelligence, social skills, humor and creativity.
He's not in the closet about his orientation, but he doesn't advertise it, either. He's learned that a little discretion can be a very good thing.
Relationships & Affinity District:
Current Relationships and Values
6 -- Meehr Zet (female dwarf), high society debutante freely spending her industrialist father's money. This is one of Harmose's closest friends in Wati. Meehr shares his sense of the ridiculous.
Affinity District in Wati
Morning Sun.This is the district of the noble and the wealthy. It features mansions and sprawling estates. It's called Morning Sun because it's on a hill overlooking the rest of the city, and because of its elevation, the morning sun hits it first. This district has been assigned to Harmose.
Wenet, the Familiar:
Harmose's familiar is a tattooed rabbit named Wenet. Most familiars are wild animals that bond with mages and agree to work with them. Wenet is different. She appeared as a magical tattoo on his skin shortly after his rebirth, and came forward whenever Harmose needed someone to cuddle, love and play with. Harmose loves Wenet, but wonders why he wound up with such a gentle familiar. Aren't familiars supposed to be fierce predators? Is Wenet a reflection of his own vulnerability and need to run away? Harmose has no idea.
In actuality, Wenet is Harmose's returned Khaibit -- the lost childhood innocence of his soul that fled ahead of the trauma. Unlike the other portions of his soul, Wenet has never fully reintegrated with Harmose. Like the Khaibit or shadow soul of a true adept, she can detach from Harmose and take a true physical form of her own. She's part guardian, part familiar, part imaginary friend made flesh.
DETAILED STAT BLOCK:
Skills Bluff +10, Diplomacy +13, Intimidate +10, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (dungeoneering) +8, Knowledge (engineering) +7, Knowledge (geography) +7, Knowledge (history) +7, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (nature) +7, Knowledge (nobility) +11, Knowledge (planes) +7, Knowledge (religion) +7, Linguistics +4, Perception +10, Sense Motive +6, Spellcraft +10