The golden haired dwarf laid his flowers on the grave of Niska, his old friend. Though not old himself, he was certainly much younger when he met Niska on the caravan trails. Somewhat of an oddity himself (as a wanderlusted dwarf), he struck up a quick friendship with the gypsy. In fact, it was she who turned him on to Desna and the beauty of the world around him (yet another strange attribute for a dwarf).
Of course, that was long ago and now his friend had been interned in the earth, in a pretty spot. Mukluk offers kind words of remembrance on her grave. He was too late to attend the funeral.
"Ah Niska, I am too late to see your last walk, wasn't I dear. I'll miss you, Lass," Mukluk says as a tear runs down his cheek into his golden beard. "It was you who taught me the way of the open road, and the beauty of this land. I owe you still. I'm sorry to see you gone and hope the Lady Pharasma finds you to poppy fields of Nirvana. You deserve nothing less."
Mukluk slumps to his knees, his head bowed in silent remembrance.
"You taught me what I already knew, didn't you? That the road is the only place for me. You've always had a gift for seeing the obvious that others couldn't see. So yeah...it's been what, 20, 25 years? And I'm still a rambling rock. You showed me...you got me out of the clan and got my feet moving. And I'll never forget that gift, Old Niska. Never."
Mukluk pauses to unstrap the buckler on his left arm, allowing him more freedom and implicit permission to relax.
"Have I told you where I've been? The answer is pretty much everywhere on this side of the world. I spent a few years in Absalom, too. And Korvosa, near the Mages Academy. Other than that, been up in the mountains and down to deserts. Did you know that there are a lot of elf tribes in the woods of Nirmathas? Sheesh...they ran me out pretty quickly, I tells yeah. Hawhawhaw. Reminds me of that time we caravan'd into the Shoanti wastes. I don't know how we got out alive, but I remember."
Mukluk sits in silence for a moment and looks around the graveyard.
"So this is where they buried you, huh? You chose to stay here, in Sandpoint, huh? Not such a bad place. It's pretty, no doubt. And that lighthouse is old. Older than your bones, old woman," Mukluk teases with a smile. "I can see this place being quiet...and maybe a nice place for your daughter, Koya. I'll go speak with her on the morrow. I made you a promise, Old Woman, and I'll go check to be sure that Koya isn't going anyplace...then I'll be rambling on. Ain't nothing for me here, is there?"
Mukluk rises to his feet and adjusts his leather armor. He checks to make sure his heavy pick hasn't fallen out of his belt (like it sometimes does) and that his buckler is stowed before walking out of the cemetery.
His parents never thought he would have much of a life when he was born. He was the 4th son in the family...and only a distant 3rd cousin to the leadership of Clan Highforge. Despite the royal connections, Mukluk's family ran nothing more than a simple horse and mule stable.
That family business has never held much interest to Mukluk...sure, he wanted to do his family proud, but his quick wits and active interest in the world lead to a fair amount of wanderlust.
When he was old enough to argue for himself, Mukluk began to volunteer for more and more caravans...to more and more exotic locales. On one caravan (about 25 years ago), he met his new old friend, Niska. Her influence gave Mukluk the courage to follow his dreams: dreams of travel and seeing more of the world.
Once Mukluk started his feet moving, he has rarely stayed in one place for too long. He loves moving from place to place, learning as he goes.
Someday, he knows he'll have to return home and take care of the family business. Or help the Clan retake one of the storied dwarven skyholds of yore. However, until that time, he looks forward to his next trip with his every breath.
Personality and Appearance:
Mukluk is gregarious for a dwarf. In fact, he's downright personable when it comes to talking to others...after all, that's the best way to learn new things about cultures and people.
When you combine his agile mind, his history and travels, and his experience, Mukluk is (at least in his own opinion) a terrific traveling companion. If someone asks about his travels, he'll tell them all about where he's been and what he's done. (See ongoing chronology.)
Mukluk likes to wear travelers cloak (blue with white trim, the color of his clan) around his leather armor, a small buckler on his left arm, and has a spellpouch and dagger at his belt. On his left hip, he wears a special cold iron heavy pick: a gift from his father when he set out on his first caravan. He calls it The Trepanator. A wooden holy symbol (more of a beloved reminder of his fondness for Desna than an actively used religious item) hangs around his neck.
Mukluk has little pride in his beard and he keeps it of acceptable medium length. He wishes he could shave it off, but realizes that his Clan (and other dwarves) might not take him seriously if he did. Mukluk has golden hair (and beard) and brown eyes.
4650.7 - Mukluk born in the dwarfhold in the outskirts of Varisia.
4708.1-12 - Year of the Very Bad Caravan
4713.2 - Mukluk learns of Niska's passing. Leaves Korvosa for Sandpoint.
4713.9 - Mukluk arrives in Sandpoint to pay respects to Niska and Koya.