About Samton Verro
Male Human Transmuter Wizard (Pact Wizard) 2
Medium humanoid (human)
Init +6; Perception +1
AC 12, touch 12, flat-footed 10 (+2 Dex)
HP 13 (2d6 + Con mod 1 x2 + 1 FC bonus)
Fort +1, Ref +2, Will +4
Speed 30 ft.
Melee - Dagger: +0 attack, 1d4-1 damage (19-20/x2) P or S
Ranged - Dagger: +3 attack, 1d4-1 damage (19-20/x2) P or S
Ranged - Acid Splash (acid flask augmented): +3 attack, 1d3+1 acid
Space 5 ft., Reach 5 ft.
Arcane School: Enhancement
- Physical Enhancement (Su) [+1 Con]
- Augment (Sp)
Arcane Bond: bonded object (ring)
Skills [2 class x2 + 4 Int x2 + 2 one time bonus + 2 background skills + 1 FC]:
1st Level (Save DC 15) -
Witch Patron: Healing
Carrying Capacity Light: 30 lb. Medium: 60 lb. Heavy: 90 lb.
Currency: 470 gp, 6 sp, 0 cp
Protection from Evil; Remove Fear
Sam is rather ordinary as far as ordinary humans go in Varisia. Clearly of mixed Chelish/Taldan stock, Samton Verro is a young man without much of anything to distinguish him. He is average in height, average in frame, and average in appearance, although his young age certainly lends his face the comely beauty that only youth can. His short-cut hair is as deep brown as his eyes and excepting his skin tone, which is pale enough to suggest that he spends most of his time indoors, you’d be hard pressed to pick out Sam from a crowd of other youngsters.
That is unless you somehow coaxed that crowd into removing their shirts. Because much of Samton’s slightly too thin torso and back is covered by bizarre branching scars, resembling what we in the real world would refer to as Lichtenberg figures. The scars are a result of arcane blowback from Sam’s experiments in transmutation, specifically in how to enhance the human body. In his quest for increasing his own lifespan, the young wizard has experimented on himself. Said research has borne fruit too, as Sam has successfully enhanced his own constitution, however slightly. He is not at all ashamed of these scars, but is hesitant to show them to others, both out of a sense of modesty and because he does not want his father figures, Parooh and Gandethus, to worry about him.
That Samton Verro should take on wizardy is perhaps not surprising. After all, the two most influential men in his life, the gnome cartographer Veznutt Parooh and the local headmaster Ilsoari Gandethus, are both accomplished practitioners of the arcane. But both men are surprised to see young Sam become a fully proficient wizard at the tender age of eighteen. Pleased, to be sure, but surprised. It’s not that the two had low expectations for the young man. Not at all; as he grew up under the care, tutelage and indeed roof of Gandethus's school/orphanage, both his parents having unfortunately perished in a goblin attack, Sam displayed every sign of having a good head on his shoulders. And when he came of age and was apprenticed to Parooh, as a cartographer in training, the gnome too took a liking to the well-mannered and clearly bright young man. Both expressed hope that Sam would attend higher education in Magnimar or perhaps even the Twilight Academy in Galduria. That Samton would train to wield magic should not surprise them.
But that’s just it; Sam never received any training. Samton Verro is entirely self-taught and a wizard at eighteen. And this does surprise Ilsoari and Parooh, as it should anyone. Especially as both agree that while their young ward is very sensible, neither have seen anything that would indicate outright genius. Nothing less can explain Sam’s abilities.
Every mystery has an answer, however, as Samton himself would tell you. And the answer to the mystery of how young Sam Verro managed to master what would take the typical wizard years of study is simple: he cheated. Sam is what is known to some as a pact wizard, a highly derided subsection of magicians who consort with otherworldly forces to forego years of training for immediate benefits. Unbeknownst to Parooh and Gandethus, Sam has spent every penny of his meagre earnings from his master on books dealing with supernatural and extraplanar beings outside this world, desperate to contract and barter with them. It took some time, more than he would have liked, but finally, on one rainy evening inside Parooh's shop, as Sam sat bleary-eyed in front of his desk sketching a map, it contacted him. The ink on the paper started shifting to form strange unknown words, and it was then that he knew something had answered his pleas.
The reader might now be wondering why, why for goodness' sake, a perfectly normal bright young lad like Sam would expose himself to who-knows-what nefarious beings in exchange for power. Beings that would someday certainly demand a hefty price for their aid. The answer is, again, simple. And it has a name: Shalelu Andosana. Sam first met the enigmatic elf warden to Sandpoint when he was just seven years old. He doesn't remember much of the goblin incident that claimed his family on the road from Galduria to Sandpoint, but he does remember her. He knows he owes her his life. As might be expected with such a traumatic event, especially being so young, Sam was left with a deep respect, even a reverence, for Shalelu. His admiration never waned as he grew up in Turandarok Academy, and he treasured every opportunity for greeting, or even speaking to, the elusive elf whenever she stopped in town. However, as Sam matured from childhood to adolescence his feelings towards Shalelu grew more complex. He started getting nervous whenever he saw her. He became increasingly desperate to impress her. He grew obsessed with such peculiar questions as what her hair smelled like. In short, Sam was and remains head over heels in love.
It has often been said that romantic relationships between humans and elves are a fool’s errand, and Sam is no fool. While ‘dalliances’ between the two races are relatively common, a lasting relationship is near impossible. Unfortunately, while Samton pines for any attention from Shalelu, what he truly wants is exactly that. He is not interested in a casual tryst, only in eternal devotion. Sam wants the elf to make an honest man out of him.
Vignette (Sam is a hypocrite):
“You know, you really are quite the artist, my young apprentice.”
Veznutt Parooh was standing on a chair to better allow him to inspect his pupil’s work. Samton was, very naturally, considerably taller than his gnome master, and the older man needed some help to reach the desk.
“C’mon now, Mr Parooh. We’ve been over this before,” the young man replied, smiling at the compliment even as he dismissed it. “I’m an illustrator, sir. I’m not an artist.”
“And I keep telling you that your distinction between the two is nonsense! Look at that beasty you’ve drawn over Devil’s Platter! Oh, she’s gorgeous!”
The gnome picked up the freshly finished map from Samton’s desk to pore over the details. Sam had indeed incorporated the Sandpoint Devil into it, as was traditional. Mapmakers typically worked in monsters and local legends into their charts, not just as a warning to travellers, but as an admission of ignorance – a sign that the area illustrated was still not fully explored. Devil’s Platter outside Sandpoint was one such area.
“Look at the fiery glare you gave her! The wings of midnight! The maw of terror! You can’t tell me every bone in your fingers isn’t brimming with artistry and imagination! Don’t deny it, boy!”
“Actually sir, I just based that on Mr Gandethus’s description. He claims to have seen it after all. No imagination required. Well, not on my part... Just a clinical, dispassionate and impersonal illustration derived from observation, sir. That’s all.”
Sam smiled as he teased the gnome. They had indeed had this discussion before. Veznutt Parooh was a fanciful man, as gnomes were wont to be. He appreciated everything colourful, creative and whimsical, a fact made painfully obvious at any visit to his shop; the cartographer’s store was ready to burst with treasure maps, each one more fantastical and romantic than the last, all of his own make. Every one of them was fake, of course, as he readily admitted. But while they may not lead one to buried gold, the sentimental gnome assured any customer that every one of them promised adventure and an unforgettable journey.
“Someday, young Sam. Someday I will make you appreciate the fantastical over the rational.”
And so this good-humoured debate had sparked between them. One of playful art vs. level-headed realism. The artist vs. the illustrator.
“You know I appreciate it, Mr Parooh. I just... value the objective over the subjective. The subjective is... obscure and by its very nature only holds meaning for a select few. I’d like my work to be relevant to everyone.”
“So you say. And yet I say that years from now you will be more disappointed by the destinations you skipped over than the ones you reached. So walk aside the narrow road. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the wanderlust in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover!”
"... They're maps, sir. Some people don't want adventure. Some just want directions to the nearest warm bed."
"Bah! I maintain that there is the making of a great artist in you."
“An artist draws what he sees, Mr Parooh,” Sam smiled. “I draw what is.”
Master and apprentice continued their discussion into the evening. Neither expected the other to budge and that was perfectly fine. They appreciated the conversation and enjoyed each other’s company. But if only the gnome knew that just a few feet from him, inside Samton’s haversack, lay the weapon he needed to win this contest. For inside the haversack was a journal. And inside said journal were drawings exposing young Sam as a hypocrite and a liar: pages upon pages of drawings of one Shalelu Andosana, presented not as she was, but as Sam saw her. The elf warden as seen in these pages was a goddess. Beautiful beyond mortal physiology, somber as any angel, and grander than any chapel. No rationalist could have drawn these. But then, love isn't rational.