Female Merchant

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Have fun! Hopefully some others will show back up. :)

Cool. In that case, my first choice would be Anathaym, but I'm fine playing any of the four really. I have the full version, so I can play Mju if needed. :)

I am actually just starting a RL runequest game (not this adventure, homebrew), so this would be great for getting a solid grip on the rules.

However, it looks like you have a fair bit of interest already. How many people do you intend to take? Just 4 or?

Here's my warlock (so far). I was having trouble finding a background that fit my original concept, but with a bit of reworking that concept, I think I can make the urchin background work. Backstory and final adjustments for the rolls below will follow tomorrow.

Coin: 4d4 ⇒ (4, 4, 1, 3) = 12 (x10)
Trinket: 1d100 ⇒ 14

Maeri's Crunch:

Female Half-Elf Warlock (Hag of Winter)

Height: 5'2", Weight 115 lbs, Age 17
HPs (d8) 10 / Current: 10
Proficiency Bonus: +2

Initiative: +2
XP: 0 / 300

Abilities & Skills:
Str: 10 (+0)
Athletics +0

Dex: 14 (+2)
Acrobatics (P) +4; Sleight of Hand (P) +4; Stealth (P) +4

Con: 14 (+2)

Int: 10 (+0)
Arcana (P) +2; History +0; Investigation +0; Nature +0; Religion +0

Wis: 12 (+1)
Animal Handling +1; Insight +1; Medicine +1; Perception +1; Survival +1

Cha: 17 (+3)
Deception (P) +5; Intimidate +3; Perform +3; Persuasion (P) +5

Armor (Proficient Light): Leather
AC: 13 (12 unarmored)
HP: 10

Saving Throws (Proficient Wisdom and Charisma):
Str: 0
Dex: +2
Con: +2
Int: +0
Wis: +3
Cha: +5

(Proficient Simple Weapons)
Speed: 30 ft.
+4 Light Crossbow: 1d8+2 (P); Crit 2d8+2 Range: 80/320
+4 Dagger (2 carried): 1d4+2 (P); Crit 2d4+2 Range: Melee or 20/60
+2 Quarterstaff: 1d6 (Bludg); Crit 2d6; Range Melee


Spell Slots: 1 - lvl 1
Spell DC: 13
Spell Attack: +5

Eldritch Blast
Minor Illusion

Level 1:
Armor of Agathys

Background Features
Origin: Urchin

Personality Trait: I sleep with my back to a wall or tree, with everything I own wrapped in a bundle in my arms.
Ideal: I help the people who help me - that's what keeps us alive.
Bond: I escaped my homeland after stealing an item and inadvertently witnessing an event I shouldn't have. I owe my life to the friend who helped me escape the North.
Flaw: If a fight can't be avoided, I'd rather kill them in their sleep than fight fair. "Fighting Fair" gets you killed.

Light Crossbow / 20 bolts
Leather Armor
2 Daggers
Arcane Focus (Orb) - stolen - shortly after which, Maeri's powers 'awakened'.
Map of "City" (hopefully to be determined w/ DM if chosen)
Belt Pouch
Common Clothes
"Whiskers"?? the mouse.

Building the warlock still. Should have her ready by tomorrow night at the latest.

Interested. Leaning towards trying the warlock. How long do we have before you close recruitment?

Also interested... in both RoW and in trying out 5.0. I'll keep an eye out for an official recruitment thread and in the meanwhile be thinking about a character. I had a witch in a RoW that went belly up shortway in, so I may rebuild her as some kind of arcane. Or something else depending on what else is thrown into the ring.

Personally, as a descendant of the mighty, proud, socially and technologically advanced Celtic peoples who fought so valiantly to preserve our way of life, heritage, and lands against the encroachment of the Roman race, I find your hesitancy to call native Americans barbarians while being completely willing to apply the term to my people ( even going so far as to lump us in the class as the hated and reviled orcs) rather suspect and insensitive.

Just saying. ;)

Seriously, as others have mentioned, it is a game mechanic class name and not really used in game world. If the surrounding cultures view these people as 'horrid barbarians' they will view them as such whether you change the class name or not.... and vice versa.

Other details / questions:

Why is the character on the caravan to Sandpoint?

Or: "how did this slave end up in this group"?

If she's in RotRL, then she could be on the caravan because Marcius' wife sent her there to guard a shipment to her husband who is in Sandpoint on business. He could then send her on with the party for his own personal reasons. (I'm not terribly familiar enough with RotRL to know what that might be)

If she's in some other campaign, I tried to leave it generic enough that you could insert Marcius and 'family' into any starting location. She and Marcius have developed a lot of trust and respect for each other over the past 10 years, and she could be acting as his 'agent'.

There is also always the option that Marcius has recently died, and Breaca simply deemed her oath fulfilled and left to fulfill her desire for freedom. This is probably the easiest and cleanest break, but I would be open to whichever option serves the story you are telling best.

Goals: Being currently (presumably) a slave, Breaca doesn't really have goals so much as dreams. She dreams of freedom mostly. Of slipping back into the life she once knew. As I think the story brought out though, she's even conflicted about even this. She loves the children and respects Marcius, and though she would never admit it, she would miss him. And therein lies another conflict, for a part of her hates herself and is guilty for liking her captor. She sees it as a sort of betrayal of Ciardan, her brother, and ultimately her defeated clan.

On another level, she desires to be the person she once was, to regain her fighting capabilities (through which she gains self respect and pride),

Finally(I think), You asked about playing styles and aliases. My longest running character on these boards is [url]http://paizo.com/people/FiallainBoairr/campaigns[/url] in the Taint campaign (and its previous incarnations). It has been slowish lately, but has been running for I'm guessing 2 years or so.

Well it seems I'm always coming in at the tail end of these things without much time for reworking, but here goes nothing. :) Hopefully the story will be entertaining if nothing else. I'm somewhat newish to Golarion (but not to rpgs), so hopefully my 'lore' isn't too horrid. I tried to make it as location neutral as I could for that reason, and also because the campaign is basically 'yet to be determined'. Anyway, here is Breaca's story:


Ten years. For ten years I been in this city; ten years in this living crawling rat warren that is now my home. The smells of the animal dung in the streets and that of the unwashed bodies of the inhabitants in the lower city surround me as I wander the streets on my way to the city gates. I crinkle my nose in distaste. Oh, how I long for my true home and its lands and people, for the green fields, snowy peaks, and dark forests that were once my haunts. I long for my family, who must surely be lost to me forever by now. I long to see my brother, who was my closest friend and ally and whom I dearly love. I hope he did not perish in the mountain pass where last I saw him so long ago and I hope that he lives yet, perhaps even with a mate and children of his own. I know he still thinks of me and I wonder if he ever learned my fate.

I continue walking through the streets towards the gates, meeting the eyes of those I pass with a level gaze. Even after so long, many are uncomfortable at the gaze of this strange foreign warrioress who meets their eyes with her own as an equal would. The women glare balefully at the haughty slave and hastily herd their children away; the men’s eyes quickly fall uneasily to the ground, their self-proclaimed superiority forgotten momentarily under the scrutiny of the stare of a woman such as I. The eyes of the braver of the fellows’ linger over my figure, their lascivious thoughts open and plain to all. I scoff disdainfully to myself. Such fools… I am the equal of any four of them. My brother, were he here, would be the equal of any ten. Besides, these young pups dare not touch me for they know Marcius’ wrath would be upon them, and they fear their general’s power and retribution. Yet I would not willingly accept or seek his protection, for I am a trained shieldmaiden and I will not show these people weakness by seeking the protection of one of their own. I doubt these youths would understand that and so I let them think what they will. Cowards. How these people ever defeated us I will never understand. It must have been some cruel and terrible jape of the gods. But enough of such musings.

I pass a merchant’s booth on my way to the city gates. On it are displayed figurines depicting various peoples, what I assume are deities, and other… things. One figure stands out to me. It is that of a woman cunningly carved in ivory. Her garments are loose and flowing and she holds her hand out as if beckoning for me to follow her. It is the White Lady, and I recognize her immediately. The legends of my people speak of the White Lady, some say that she is the founding mother of my race, others that she is a goddess. Mayhaps there is truth in both tales, but I do not know much of such things. I am no priestess. One thing all the stories agree on though, she will one day return with vengeance against those who would harm us.

Clutching the statue to my breast, I ask the merchant in the back of the stall how much he wants for it. He turns towards me, his eyes widening in surprise as he takes in my rough garb... and the raven mark tattooed on my upper right shoulder. His eyes linger on the raven. I have not seen the man before, but we recognize each other as fellow Maod. “Your hair..” He whispers awkwardly, as if to himself. I blush in shame then and, setting the figurine down, turn quickly to go. Among those who wear the raven, one’s hair is one’s pride and joy and is never to be cut. Now mine is kept cropped short to my ears by my mistress, as is the fashion here among those of my status. As I am leaving, I hear footsteps close behind me and I feel strong hands grab me by my shoulders from behind and whirl me back around to face the merchant. A rough hand cups my chin and lifts it gently so I am looking up into the weathered face of the man. I allow him to do so, for his eyes reveal compassion and I sense that he meant well. He gazes down at me. “I am sorry. Forgive a fool’s oafishness, Lady.” He presses the figurine into my palm. “Keep it…” He says softly. “…and come by again and we will talk of home, if you’ve the wish.” My eyes express my deep gratitude as I nod once and then turn away.

One day each month my master Marcius gives me leave to spend the day as I wish and such is today. My duties are rarely overly onerous. I enjoy the company of his children Cassia and Tulilia, over whom I have been given the responsibilities of governess, and I enjoy working in his stables, grooming the horses and the like. Besides this, Marcius himself is kind to me in his own gruff way. Much more so than I would have reason to expect from him. I think he must be made of the higher stuff of his people’s ancestors. His wife, Marcella, however, despairs of my ever becoming a ‘proper’ servant and takes me to task at the slightest infraction of proprieties, of which there are apparently many. She does not like that her husband is so lenient with me. Certainly, few if any of the other slaves are given personal holidays as I am. Marcius has always treated me with honor, dignity, and respect, as one warrior to another, though I know he can also be very jealous of his reputation and station in society and will brook no breach of propriety before his fellows. Though the feigned servility chafes my own sense of honor, I try to indulge him as he has indulged me and I behave myself, publicly at least, as one of my current station would be expected to behave. Once only have I lost my temper and defied him before his peers and that once only has he beaten me. I try to please him, not because I fear him or his punishments, but because he is one of the few of his people who, to my surprise, I have come to respect and even to like. This I find somewhat ironic as he was once my greatest enemy and the man who so ruthlessly defeated my people those ten years ago. We have spent long hours talking together of the politics of the day and of various campaigns, one warrior to another, and often he will ask my advice or thoughts on certain matters. I have learned much from him. Whatever his faults, I find that I cannot hate him, for I believe he is at the core a good and just man.

His children Cassia and Tulilia are my confidants and my joy. Often when they were younger a crash of thunder in the night would send them screaming in terror to my bed where we would all spend the night huddled together on my cot. I have reared them as I would my own daughters and teach them all that I know. At Cassia’s request I even began secretly teaching them to fight with dagger. To this I readily agreed, believing the two should know how to handle themselves in a scrap. It is only proper, after all, for the gods frown on those who are unwilling to help themselves and instead come crying to them every time a little thing goes awry. The world belongs to the strong and the gods honor strength. The girls show promise, much to my delight. Perhaps my mistress is right. Perhaps I am making savages of the two. If this is true, then so much the better. Someone needs to, lest they be wasted. I have seen the so called ‘noble’ woman, and she is a pitiful thing. I will make something much more from my two charges; more self reliant, more strong. I have even taught the children what I know of many of the histories and deities of my own people, though I am certainly no bard. Marcius indulges me in this as well, to the great consternation of his wife who believes if given free reign, I will make such heathens of the children that they will never find husbands willing to put up with them and thus the family’s future be ruined. Marcius insists however that it is good that the children should learn of neighboring peoples and cultures and so I have regaled them with tales of Maod heroes and heroines, of monsters both human and non, of great serpents and of gods and goddesses, of curses and terrible dooms, of battles and duels of honor, and of oaths sworn in vengeance over a father’s grave, much to the girls’ wide-eyed delight. Fingering the outline of the figurine in my pouch, I decide that it is an opportune time to teach them of the White Lady. I decide that tonight I shall recount her legend to them, as once my mother did with me so long ago.

At last I pass the gates of the city and make my way into the hills, and once I am far enough away from the city and into free air, I take a deep, cleansing breath and sigh with relief. A month is so terribly long to wait. I shake my head and think, not for the first time, of how easy it would be to simply leave, to escape, to be just one more body lost in the crowds that daily enter and leave the city and then to simply disappear forever into the woods. I would miss the children then, true, but I would be free again. Once in the wilds these city dwellers would never find me, not without magical aid anyway, and I doubt that such effort would be wasted on one runaway slave. I would make my way to my homeland, to my mother and father, and to Uhtred, my brother. But I cannot do this. My oath holds me here as surely as any chains and I will not go against my word once given. Marcius knows this about me, and I think this is why he trusts me as he does. If I am ever to leave, it must be with his blessing, or else upon his death; for it is to him, and to him alone, that I swore my oath.

I head into the woods and find the old oak that has become my special refuge. I pull the makeshift bow that I have crafted out from the hollow in the tree and string it with the twine I have secreted in my pack. I am forbidden to bear arms within the city, but here… here I am free to do as I wish, for there are none to see. I caress the bow lovingly. It is not the bow that I used to carry, for that great bow Black Wind and my axe Serpentbite are in a chest in Marcius’ Estate. I have not touched them since I was taken. No, this is the bow I have made on my free days over the years and it is an extension of who I am. I know my skills are now not a tenth what they once were in the height of my power and youth, for such skill requires much practice to maintain and true battle to hone and sharpen and I have had neither the time nor the freedom for such since I surrendered myself to Marcius. Like my captors, I have grown lax and slow and my skills have waned over the past ten years. This is not by any fault of mine, for I practice still as much as I am able.

For a long while I stand silently and blessedly alone in the woods with my bow in hand and my eyes closed. I feel the wind caresses my face and hear the birds singing overhead. I remember the woman who I was and the woman who I know I still am inside. I am still Breaca Strongbow, warrioress and defender of my people and I hold tightly to that truth, though I know I look little like the wild young woman from those long years ago. As I stand here, I remember the day when, as a little girl, I shot my first arrow, and how proud my father and my brother were of me. I remember a few months later, my first kill, a great wild boar. Father declared a feast and the priests blessed the kill before all the gods as we roasted it over a pit. I was given a seat of honor and the lion’s portion that night as we all ate our fill and told stories and sang songs till the early hours of the morn. I remember on my tenth name day when my brother gave me my first horse and taught me to ride. I remember how, laughing, I would mount Swyft bareback and we would race each other through the woods, and mother would scold us when we returned home late at night long after the sun had gone down. I remember with pride the day my fame and skill with bow and axe and horse earned me a place in our warrior society and the raven mark which to this day adorns my left arm. And I remember the fateful day the outriders came with news of the raid.

I don’t think we ever knew truly what happened. The reports we received were conflicted. Some say the Sinovei, with their insatiable lust for lands and power, invaded us, others that a lord from one of the neighboring clans foolishly raided an one of their border villages. Whatever the case, our brothers and sisters were at war and so eagerly we prepared for battle, as is our wont. Swords were forged, arrows fletched, and skills honed till at last my brother and I and the warriors and warrioresses of our clan rode out to meet our hated enemy, for the Sinovei were among those who had allied themselves with Marcius’ people when they came to plunder and we have not forgotten. Though I had participated in many a raid before this, it was to be my first true pitched battle and oh, how I reveled in the joy of it. I learned from Marcius much later that my battle was really little more than a skirmish, child’s play really… but to my young heart it was as if a great story come to life. When we arrived, we saw that it was not just the Sinovei that we faced, for there was a detachment of soldiery from the cities among them. My arrows sent many lad to his ancestors that day and I brought much fame and honor to my family. We caught them by surprise and routed them. The Sinovei leader was slain, his head hewn off at the shoulders by my very brother Uhtred’s greatsword. We should have destroyed them utterly then, but alas we did not. They were allowed to escape, much to my brother’s displeasure. Soon after this our spies brought us news of the enemy’s appointment of a new commander, one by the name of Marcius - from the city-states. I remember how my brother had laughed when he heard this and told me we’d whittle him down to size as we did his predecessor if they even dared to come for us now. I smiled at his enthusiasm and nodded in agreement, for truly, who indeed could stand before us?

Marcius proved to be a much more cunning and devious foe than did his predecessor, however. Ever he managed to stay one step ahead of us, burning a farmstead here, destroying a settlement there and vanishing again before we could react, denying us the pitched battle we sought. Ever he would hit us and retreat, all the while bringing in more reinforcements from his empire until the balance inevitably began to shift in his favor and he began to retake the lands they had lost and continued pushing us back until it seemed as if his gods watched over him while our own must surely be sleeping. We knew we were beaten. Beaten by superior numbers for none of our neighboring tribes were foolhardy enough to come to our rescue. A council was called and the shamans and priests consulted. It was determined that if we were to have a chance to be victorious, Marcius must be slain. It was decided that a party of warriors should attempt to infiltrate the enemy camp and capture or slay him. It was a foolhardy and likely suicide mission, the kind of mission that would bring much glory to those who would undertake it and perhaps even the notice of the gods. Uhtred and I were among the first to volunteer and, because of our growing reputation as warriors, were among those chosen to attempt the deed.

Days later, we reached the enemy encampment, but we knew at once something was wrong. It was not nearly so great an assembly as we had expected. It was as if a good half of his force had disappeared. We did however espy a man whom Halthor recognized as he whom we sought. After some further reconnaissance we decided to continue on with our mission. We determined that we would strike the next evening after the general had retired.

“I will sneak into his tent and slay him whilst you four cover me.” Uhtred declared.

I laughed. “Uhtred dear, you couldn’t sneak past a corpse. I will go.” There was much discussion then between all the party at this, but at last it was determined that I should indeed be the one to attempt the deed, for none of them could match my ability to move stealthily undetected. Uhtred was definitely not pleased, I could tell. I slipped my arm around him and whispered. “I will be alright, brother. The gods will watch over me.” He merely grunted and so I poked him in the ribs so he would see reason. He can be so very stubborn, my brother.

All that day I prepared myself, honing my weapons and donning the ochre paint designed to strike terror in the heart of an enemy. When at last I emerged, Ciardan said I looked like a banshee. I grinned impishly at him. At last the hour came and I kissed my companions farewell before creeping silently down the slope. “Be careful.” Ciardan called after me. I turned and I winked up at him and blew him a kiss in reply. I liked him very much, for he was always a sweetheart.

Creeping down to the camp in the dark of night, I silently stole up behind a lone and rather bored looking sentry. Without hesitation, I clamped my hand down hard over his mouth as my blade sliced cruelly across his windpipe. Soundlessly, he collapsed convulsing against me and I slowly, silently, lowered him to the ground before dragging him into some dense bushes where I hoped he would be out of view of any passerby.

Coming at last to the tent which I knew was General Marcius’, I lifting the flap and crawled inside. The interior was dark, but using the flickering glow of the campfire outside, I could just make out a cot near the back. I crept up to it, poised to strike…. but as I pulled the covers back I saw too late that it was empty. Cursing, I was debating what I should do when I heard the voices approaching from outside. Frantically, I looked about for an escape and my eyes again spied the cot. Deciding it was likely going to be my only option, I quickly rolled underneath it and lay quietly waiting. Moments later the flaps opened and a man stepped inside. He sighed wearily as he strode towards my hiding place and, sitting down on the cot underneath which I lay, he slowly began removing his boots and armor. Impatiently I waited and watched him as the sweat began to bead at the small of my back. Suddenly, the man stood and cocked his head to the side and I got a first glimpse of a handsome face. He could indeed only be the general which I sought. Breathlessly I waited, my heart pounding so that I feared he must surely hear. I tensed my muscles, ready to explode into action as I wondered if he had sensed my presence. Presently however, he continued his stripping until he was naked to the waist before moving to sit at the desk along the side wall. He took out a quill and ink and was rummaging through a sheaf of parchment. His back now towards me, I saw my opportunity. I crept silently up out of my hiding place, but his warrior instincts must have kicked in for suddenly he leapt up, swinging to face me as I was still rising from the ground. Swiftly I closed the distance to him, herding him with my blade to the far corner where he would not be able to reach for his weapons. I stopped there. Seeing he was within my power, the man straightened to his full height and stood fearlessly confronting me as a god might, even as he awaited the end he surely must now expect. He made no move, did not even call out to his guards. For long moments the two of us stood thus facing each other, neither saying a word. The tension was a palpable thing in the air between us as we both realized his life was in my hands. As I steeled myself for the killing thrust, the only sound was that of my own labored breathing, for my chest was heaving as I held the blade pressed firmly against his naked chest. A thin trickle of blood ran down where my short sword had pricked him, but he did not flinch even slightly. For an eternity it seemed we stood there, my mind a whirl as his eyes locked with my own. I will never forget the look on his face as we stood there, his eyes seeming to suck my very soul into them.

To this very day I sometimes lay awake at night and wonder why I did not strike him down that fateful eve. I had certainly planned and steeled myself to do so and up to that very last instant when our eyes locked I was fully committed to the deed. He was helpless before me that night in his tent and had I struck, things would be so very different now. Every instinct in me screamed at me to thrust the blade forward, but something inexplicably held me back. It seems foolish, even to me, but I had the sense somehow that this man’s destiny and my own were to be intertwined. Too late, I felt the chords of fickle fate wrap themselves about me and I found to my shame that I could not bring myself to slay my enemy in this fashion. Oh, I am no sentimental weakling. I have slain many in my time and had we met in battle, blade against blade, I would not have hesitated to take his life, but this was different somehow, and I found I could not do it. If he had fought, had made some move against me, even then I might have slain him, but he did no such thing. He just stood there watching me, waiting. Perhaps he sensed what I had sensed as well. I have never asked him.

Slowly, so infinitely slowly, my blade lowered. I licked my lips nervously. Even now he did not lunge for me or shout for help as I half expected, but instead stood still with his eyes locked on mine as if he were trying to read my soul. Finally, trembling slightly, I tore my gaze away and took a step back from him, though I still kept my blade between us. His face did not register relief or anger, or even surprise. He just stood there gazing curiously at me, his brow cocked as if waiting to see what I would do next.

There was a shout from outside the tent and I slowly backed away from him and peeked outside. I saw at once that the sentry’s body had been discovered and the camp was in turmoil. Cursing my unexpected weakness, I slipped outside into the mayhem. Two soldiers immediately spotted me and charged. I nimbly parried one thrust of a spear and dodged the sword of the other, but they kept pushing me back. It was all I could do to defend myself, much less launch a counterattack. I threw my knife at them as I took a step back to give myself time to draw my axe. Still they drove me back and it was all I could do to deflect their blows. Then, throwing caution to the wind, I spun around the spearman’s thrust, flinging my body inside the thrust and forward. I felt the speartip lightly graze my side even as I swept past the reach of the weapon’s point. Still, my opponent had reacted too slowly for, using the momentum of my spin to give my blow force, I stepped around behind him and swung my axe around with all my force to catch him at the base of his skull. Blood and brains splattered me as I wrenched Serpentbite free and as he fell I knew that the man would be dead before his body hit the ground. The swordsman did not hesitate, however, as he immediately rushed in with a wicked blade thrust, giving me no moment to recover from my attack. I desperately stepped back to avoid the point of the sword as it hungrily sought my abdomen, but in doing so, I tripped on the body of my fallen foe and fell hard, the breath going out of me in a rush as I hit the ground painfully. I had a fleeting glance behind my remaining opponent where I could see that our struggle had been seen and several more soldiers were now coming up. My attention was soon brought back to more immediate concerns however as the swordsman came at me again with a savage over handed blow that surely would have split me in twain had I not desperately thrown my axe up before my body to block the incoming blade. As it was, my limbs seemed to melt into jelly at the impact as axe met sword, for he was very strong and I am certain it was only by intervention of some god or goddess that I was able to keep the sword from my face.

Suddenly there came a great bellowing from behind us and then a sharp clang of steel followed by a hollow thump and suddenly my attacker collapsed dead on the ground next to me. Ciardan and Uhtred charged past, engaging the first of the line of soldiers to give me time to regain my wits and my feet. My heart swelled with pride for the two men, for even as I stood shakily to my feet, three more of our enemies lay already dead at their feet. I knew they could not hold them for long though, and I was about to rush in to aid them when a voice called me back.

“Breaca, catch!” It was Kelda, leading the horses she and Halthor had taken for us when they spooked the enemy steeds. She threw something at me which I caught in my free hand. I smiled a wicked smile, for I saw that it was my bow which I had left behind earlier. My quiver soon followed after and I swiftly notched an arrow, drew, and loosed death upon the enemy. Before the arrow had even found its target, I had another notched and drawn, a spearman in my sights. I loosed again and it sped past Ciardan’s head to lodge in a spearman’s throat even as he was about to lunge at my friend. The man staggered back making harsh choking sounds, his hands reaching futilely up to stop the flow of blood from his throat. A third and fourth arrow also found targets as Kelda and Halthor joined their fire to my own from the ridge above, giving our men time to disengage. “Back! We must go!” I cried.

The men turned to follow me even as the enemy began to pierce the air with a few arrows of their own. I heard a gasp from behind. Glancing over my shoulder I saw with dismay that Ciardan had fallen to his knees with an arrow protruding from his upper back. A thin line of blood was trickling down the corner of his mouth. I screamed his name in horror and rushed back to him, ignoring the arrows as they whizzed past us. Kelda and Halthor continued their steady firing and I could hear Uhtred yelling at me to keep going. I ignored him and fell to my knees before my friend. Ciardan reached up and grasped my shoulder for support.

“Go… go my little raven, you must fly..” he gasped. His face was contorted in agony.

“No…No! You’re coming with us! Hold on to me, I will help you.”

He shook his head firmly. “I cannot..” He smiled a bloody and grim smile. “But I will have a good end … one to sing of.” His hand grasped his sword more tightly as he raised it point up beside me.

Tears streamed down my face then, but I nodded and smiled with understanding and a fierce pride for him. Then impulsively I bent forward and kissed him long and hard and clutched him against me. I felt his hand squeeze my own tightly even as strong hands grasped me by the shoulders and pulled me back. The enemy was closing in on us.

“Come Breaca! We must fly.” Uhtred shouted as he continued tugging at me. The two men’s eyes met.

“Go.” Ciardan told us, his voice calm and certain. “I will be well.”

Reluctantly I followed my brother as he turned and fled back into the night. He was limping badly, I now saw through my tears. As we scrambled up the slope, Ciardan’s final war cry rang in our ears as his sword sang its grizzly song one last time upon this world.

We fled all that night. The enemy would be delayed for Kelda and Halthor had sent most of their mounts flying off into the night, but we knew it would not take them long to take up our trail in hot pursuit. I avoided the eyes of my companions. How would I ever tell them? Ciardan’s death was a raw and bleeding wound on my heart. My poor sweet Ciardan. Because of my weakness, he had died for nothing. The guilt and shame of that will haunt me to my grave and into the next world. I had failed them all and though I betrayed nothing on the outside of yet, inside I wept bitterly.

The next day we could all see that Uhtred was more badly hurt than he had let on. He would not allow us to slow our pace though, for he knew we were being followed. By the third day however, he had no choice. The wound had festered and as I lay a hand to his brow, I knew he was feverish. We came at midday upon a clearing in which stood an old and abandoned hut. I called for a halt. Uhtred could barely sit his mount and required aid dismounting. Kelda and Halthor helped him inside as I went in search of herbs that I might use to try and draw the poisons from his body. By the time I returned, he was half delirious. Fearfully, I cut away his leggings from the wound and gasped. He would need far better care than I could give him. Nonetheless, I prepared an ointment and applied it, hoping my poor skills would at least serve to slow the disease until we could find aid. Night was already descending by the time I finished my ministrations and so we decided to spend the night at the hut and then strike out the next day using an old abandoned cart Halthor found out back to carry Uhtred. I slept uneasily that night. I heard Uhtred moan next to me and so I went to him. His fever had cooled slightly, but he was still unconscious. I bit my lip in worry. We must find a healer and soon. I had never seen a wound fester so quickly before.

Dawn came all too early and I awoke with a sense of foreboding. Kelda and I were hitching one of the horses to the cart when suddenly Halthor came running and shouting from back the way we had come the previous day. “Hurry, they are just behind us, a few minutes no more!” Frantically we finished hitching the cart as Halthor carried Uhtred outside. I looked back down the trail and saw with dismay that already the enemy was coming into view. Suddenly I knew what I must do. It was a long shot, a fool’s hope. “Take care of my brother.” I told my companions.

“Breaca… what…” I broke Kelda’s question off with a look and then mounted my horse bareback and urged him into a slow walk down the slope and towards the enemy. I did not look back.

Silently I approached and stopped fifty feet or so from the enemy, my arms held with palms up out from my side to show I did not mean to attack. I clamped down hard on the fear I felt rising up in me and kept my expression emotionless as I looked down on them. A hawk nosed, haughty looking man strode impudently out of their ranks and took a few steps towards me.

“Well?” He demanded.

My heart sank. This was not the man whom I had half hoped, half feared to speak with. “Do you command here?”

“I’ll be asking the questions here, wench. Now I’ll ask one last time, what do you want?”

I exhaled sharply, biting back several sharp retorts as I struggled to control my temper. It would not serve me here. Instead, I drew myself up and calmly addressed him.

“I have come to ask safe passage for my three companions.”

At this the man openly laughed and I could hear the smirks and guffaws of the men behind him. Grimacing, I was about to address them further when a movement in their ranks arrested my attention. An armored man astride a great roan stallion parted the ranks before him as he rode through and halted next to hawk-face. “What’s going on here, Lucius?” He demanded in tones of authority.

“One of the savage b&#!*es, sir. Come to bay at us. Most likely one of the ones from the other night.” He snorted. “She ‘asks’ safe passage for her accomplices.”

“Hmm… is that so…” He removed his helmet and eyed me speculatively. I could now see that it was Marcius. He nudged his horse slightly and came towards me. He was an expert horseman, I could tell from the way he sat his horse. Several of his men started forward as his intention to speak with me became clear, but he waved them back and approached me alone. I could tell that he knew who I was.

“What is your name, Lady?”

I returned his stare evenly. “Breaca, the Strongbow.” I said simply. At this there were gasps and mutterings behind us. Apparently my fame was greater than I had known. Marcius betrayed nothing, however. He eyed me, his brow cocked in that infuriating way he has. I cleared my throat and continued.

“I offer myself in exchange for the safe conduct of my three companions. One is very sick. If you will permit him to be borne by my companions to his village, then I, Breaca, will surrender myself to serve you in whatever capacity you deem fit, though I will not bear arms against my clan.” It hurt me to do this, but I knew it was the price the gods demanded for my weakness. I would pay this price, no matter what it cost me. For my brother, and for Ciardan.

“Your friends are?”

“The sick one is a distant cousin, the others are from his village.”

“Show me.”

I betrayed no emotion as I turned my horse and headed up the slope. I saw that my companions had being detained by several mounted soldiers. Halthor was glaring up at them. As we approached, Marcius waved the soldiers back. Uhtred’s face had been hidden from view by a blanket my companions had thrown over him as the enemy had approached. I hid my dismay as Marcius dismounted and lifted a corner of the blanket. He grew suddenly still. He had been at the battle when Uhtred decapitated his commander. Clearly he had recognized my brother.

He moved closer to stand next to me. “You ask much…” he breathed low so no one else could hear.

I swallowed hard and looked down at the ground. “One might say that I have given much.” I replied in kind, my tone implying the double meaning of my words. I looked back up and saw him nod almost imperceptibly.

Finally, he spoke. “I shall want your oath on this.”

I nodded, my face expressionless. “Give these three safe passage to wherever they would go and I will belong to you as I have said. This I swear by all the gods.” Then I knelt down on the ground in front of him and lay my beloved Black Wind and Serpentbite between us. Then I removed my armor and set it aside. I looked up at him. Our eyes locked.

“So shall it be.”


Name: Breaca
Race: Human, Female
Age: 33
Culture: "Barbarian"
Class: Ranger (built as a switch hitter)
Alignment: LN
Professions / Crafts: Fletcher, Herbalist (Heal skill)

Breaca stands at 5’8 and has dark hair which is currently cropped short. She is lithe and very athletic in appearance. Some might describe her as pretty, but probably not especially beautiful. On her right shoulder is tattooed the image of a raven, marking her as a former member of the Ravens, a warrior society among the clans. She has a somewhat fiery disposition and is not afraid to speak her mind, a trait which often lands her in trouble. She is capable of both soft hearted kindness and savage cruelty. Breaca believes that the gods honor strength and courage above all else. She views unwarranted mercy towards an enemy as a weakness and is usually quite ruthless in battle, though she fights honorably (or at least honorably in her mind). This is not to say she will not allow an enemy to surrender, for she will and has done so if the enemy fought well and with honor. Victory is victory after all. She will show no mercy however to any who have harmed a friend for she is extremely loyal and protective towards those she cares for. Breaca considers her word sacred and views any who would go back on their word once given as despicable.

Though having little to no talent herself, Breaca has a fondness for music and for stories, and has been known to sit for hours listening to a bard or other performer. She believes in her people’s gods and is actually quite devout in her own way.

Additional notes:

You may be asking what in the world "Maod" is. It is a made up family clan name. I didn't know where if chosen, the character would end up, so I decided to take a few liberties that could be tightened down to more setting specifics if desired later. In similar fashion, I used a made up 'white lady' as a legend of her people.

I have not made up crunch as of yet, but can put it together pretty quickly if I'm lucky enough to be chosen. For your info / consideration, she will be a switch-hitter ranger. I could also make her a barbarian if desired for some reason. Probably not a fighter though, for the simple reason that I can't stand to play a character with few skills. Besides the other two options fit her better I think. Let me know if you have any questions and hopefully I will spot them before time runs out. :P Thanks for your time and consideration!

Unfortunately I may have to pass. Unfortunate because this sounded interesting and fun, but life seems to be too busy at the moment. I haven't been able to put a character together yet and I don't want to hold you guys up.

Still considering... I was thinking possibly some combination of an urban barbarian /rogue, however I don't see barbarians mentioned, either as allowed or prohibited. Are they an option?

This sounds like it could be interesting. How long are you keeping recruitment open? I will have to think up a concept - perhaps a Justicar bard

Ditto on the hoping I'm not too late - I just came across this thread. I'd like to submit Aliana Do'Erren, a half-elven monk (Zen Archer). Character sheet and background in the works.

Hi there. I’m kinda new to PbP, but I came across this thread. Being a WoT fan I was intrigued would like to try my hand at it if there’s still room. My first thought for a character was for an Aiel ex-warrioress who was discovered to be able to wield Saidar, working towards the Wise One prestige class. However, it sounds like you have several channelers already, and, not knowing the scope of the story you’re looking to tell I also wasn’t sure how well Aiel might fit into your campaign concept. Assuming you’re still looking for more players, do you have any preference between having another channeler or something more ‘martial’?