Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Negiri the Alchemist and Vigdis the Warbringer

Negiri was born dirt poor. Poorer than you can imagine. He had nothing of his own save his name and his magic. He learned early on that he was a skilled alchemist: he could turn things into other things.

He dabbled with this for a time, until he thought of something; he turned a rock into gold. He used the gold to buy some food. For the first time since he could remember, he ate.

He tried this again, and again, and again. It kept working. But he did not thinks things through; he had started to gain a reputation. Rumors were circulating in the ghetto about a kid who had gotten his hands on some gold. Some local gangsters found out who he was and abducted him, demanding to know how he came about so much gold.

Attempting to threaten it out of him he panicked and turned one of their weapons into a bomb. It had a much bigger kick than he anticipated. Though it would have killed anyone else, it ignited his spark, and flung him to (relative) safety.

Afraid and angry and bitter. He's come to the conclusion that money makes the world go round, and he never wants to be on the bottom rung of that later again.

He wanders for a time, doing odd jobs to stay above the poverty line wherever he is. Using his skills to impress people. One day he hears about a job offering a substantial reward. A bounty hunt for a horrible monster that was terrorizing the locals. He decides to try his hand at it.

Vigdis was born into war.

That's all there was on Valla ; war.

Little else mattered on the plane but strength, and the greatest accomplishment you could obtain to her clan was a glorious death atop the mountain of deadmen that killed you.

Vigdis hoped for such a death.

She honed her skills for many years.

She met her foes on the battlefield and slaughtered them all. After a particularly grueling battle, she was caught by surprise and a lowly goblin gave her a fatal blow. She fell to the ground; bleeding out. Her consciousness faded, and her body was lifted away from the battlefield. She looked down and saw the world below, the everlasting war beneath her. She had earned her death.

But alas, things are rarely so simple. She landed unceremoniously in an unfamiliar realm. This was not the afterlife she had been promised. This was something else. This was purgatory. This was surely a punishment by the gods! They had seen her felled by a single lowly goblin and were displeased. She had been denied her place in the afterlife for she had sinned.

She was beside herself with rage. She wandered the planes, finding the most spectacular foes, and killing them. Hoping desperately to one day again earn her spot in the heavens.

One day, she heard of a great and terrible beast that had been terrorizing the countryside for many a year, that had slaughtered the dozens of champions that had been sent to face it.
She would try her hand at this beast.

Negiri came upon the beast, and was horrified. This was far beyond his capabilities. He was skilled and clever, but war was not his expertise. What was he thinking?! As he sat and tried to come up with a plan, he withheld a woman approach the monster. Her hair like braided straw, an axe in one hand, and lightning in the other. She waged war with the beast, and over many minutes, managed to destroy the monster. He was thoroughly impressed. He had never before seen such raw power wielded so well.

Just then he had a most wonderful idea.

Vigdis was disappointed. Though the monster put up a fight, it did not put up a challenge. She had expected more of the creature from the stories told to her by the peasants. Though to be fair, her definition of tough was, well, tougher than theirs. Once again she was denied her glorious deathbattle.

She heard clapping.

She turned and saw a man approach her. He was clean shaven with skin as dark as her leather boots. Adorned with resplendent clothes and gaudy jewelry. She was unimpressed, but wary; what was such a soft squishy man doing monster hunting?

He introduced himself. He said his name was Negiri, and that he was an alchemist.
He picked up a rock and threw it into air and it burst into a firecracker.
Cute trick.
Nothing before her lightning however.
He said that he had a proposition for her.

Negiri proposed to the lightning woman that they team up.
He was well traveled and had heard of many similar tales of high bounties for monsters slain. He could find suitable prey for her and she could destroy it. And they could split the profits even.

The woman told Negiri that her name was Vigdis, and she did not seek battles for the money, but the glory.

"You can have all the money, I have no need for it."

Negiri's eyes bulged. This was too good to be true.

Here before him stood a goddess of war, completely content on the idea of fighting his battles for him, for the sake of something as intangible as 'glory'? He couldn't have dreamed of a more ideal scenario.

He reached out his hand.

"I believe this is the start of a beautiful friendship."

Negiri is a man of average build. Short, well-kept facial hair and a hair shaved short with intricate patterns in it. His skin is very dark. His eyes are a dark brownish-goldish color.

He adorns himself with the finest clothes and jewelry money can buy on whatever plane he is traveled upon, whatever they may be.

His body itself is covered in tattoos and runes, as to help augment his alchemy. He has numerous pouches at his waist full of weird fluids and powders and stones that he uses in his alchemy.There is a large sabre to his side. He's not particularly well trained in it, be often alchemically transforms it into menacing shapes in front of would be foes to intimidate them. It usually works.

Vigdis is a woman of slightly greater than average height. Well muscled. Lithe and sinewy. Straw-colored hair in chest length dreads. Grey eyes. She has a number of scars across her body from some of the battles she has fought.

She is accustomed to simple leather and armor like that of her homeworld, but since traveling with Negiri, he insists that she is to look more impressive if she is to keep his company, she insists on wearing things more functional.

They have met a compromise, and now she wears some of the most impressive and artistic leather and armor you might see on the field of battle.

About the only thing that stays the same is her axe, a family heirloom.

Negiri is a selfish and shallow man, far too concerned with how others perceive him for his own good. To that end, he always tries to wear the most extravagant fashions. Vigdis says he looks like a twit when he does so, so he tones it down sometimes.

He abhors being looked down on, or being told he is not good enough at something or has no talent at a particular task. Even if it's true. He holds a grudge for a very long time, and holds fantasies of revenge against those that have slighted him from decades before.

Vigdis is a Vallan through and through. She loves a good fight, and does not fear death. She is rather unconcerned with what other people think of her (unless they think she's weak) and doesn't particularly care about her appearance (save for looking intimidating).

She doesn't boast about about her strengths and talents, preferring to let her actions and reputation speak for her.

She's rather withdrawn. Her clan's entire social lifestyle revolves around battle, but most planes aren't as warprone as Valla, so she has difficulty adjusting to that and relating to other people, though she doesn't take offense to those who aren't as bloodthirsty as herself. Her travels have taught her that talent for battle can come from unexpected places, so she tries to keep that in mind wherever she goes.

She finds that she gets anxious and uncomfortable the longer it's been since she's gotten into a fight. Since Valla culture revolves so heavily around battle, she's never really garnered any other skills, and she hates it when she notices that. Recently she's trying to be more responsive to other talents, because she's not used to being bad at something and doesn't like the feeling.

Negiri is a powerful alchemist. He is skilled at turning one thing into another. The transmute mechanic is right up his alley, as are most forms of looting or digging .

In battle, he will often summon alchemically formed servants to fight at his behest. Weirds and homunculi and the like. He can repel opponents by undoing the bonds that hold their summons in the material world.

His studies in alchemy have made him quite versed in meta-magic. As such, if he knows what sort of foe he is soon to face, he can prepare adequate counter measures to render them useless .

Vigdis wields lightning magic. She can use it to in the traditional bolt-slinging way, or to strengthen her physical attacks .

That's pretty much all there is to it.

Another entry in the character contest:

This round was for a pair of walkers that travel together.

It took me forever to find a pair that I liked.

First I tried a Bonnie and Clyde kind of pair, but the characters never really came together in a way I found compelling. Then I tried a cop and criminal handcuffed together shtick, but I couldn't think of a pair of magic specialties that felt right.

Then I tried something I liked, something like a Han Solo and Chewbacca dynamic. A pair of bounty hunters loyal to each other. It kind of worked from there. Vigdis was the first Magic character I came up with, and I'd been dying to find a place to use her. It came together perfectly.

I'd love to hear what you think!

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