Giving Life to The Age of Worms Again!

For those of you playing along at home, you may have noticed that I put another character through the grinder in Angela's Age of Worms game. While it saddens me to see Sagt go (especially as he was my longest-lived character in the game), I had another character ready - mostly, see the recap for more - for the very next session.

The new guy is Cameron val Dane, Knight-in-Exile of The Great Kingdom of Northern Aerdy. I don't expect his backstory to come up during the course of play because Angela is running an adventure path and I'll not hijack her game, but I'm going to make a point of discussing it in-character to add flavor and use as roleplay hooks.

1. What do you look like?
Cameron is a man of large build, standing around six feet tall, with wide shoulders and chest. His hair is a prematurely graying chestnut cut somewhat short and he wears the ragged and reddened facial features of a drunk, with heavy stubble  and drooping eyes. If he could be convinced to clean up, or were to ever sober up, he holds a regal bearing and an intense look suited both for the battlefield and the noble's court.
2. Where is your family, if any?
Cameron has lost most of his family to clashes with Delglath "the Undying" and his hordes of undead, as well as seeing some scattered in exile like he was, or fleeing the area before the undead or crown took their turns. While searching for some family that fled, he was led to Blackwall to establish connections with the battle-mage, Marzena, whom had fought under another House Torquann-allied banner. Considers Dairon his family, but treats him somewhat poorly in his current drunken state, mostly out of misplaced anger at his own failures.

3. For whom or what would you make sacrifices for?
Those he has already lost. His family, the people of his fief, and the soldiers lost under his command all share a common fate in his eyes, and he would give anything to give them back the ability to live their lives. Dairon, though he is Cameron's squire, is someone else he would make sacrifices for, now seeing the young man as his only family.

4. What is your greatest regret?
Allowing hubris to rule his decision to take the post appointed by Prince Elkerst near the fallen city of Rinloru in place of the Torquaan knight that should have been given the fief. This eventually led to the destruction of all of Cameron's holdings and the death of most of the people under his rulership, as well as the slaughter of all but a handfull of troops that he led in a disastrous crusade into enemy territory.

5. What are your greatest dislikes?
Unjust rulership and the undead.

6. What topics or activities fascinate you?
Warfare, heraldry, and the history of The Great Kingdom...that is, when he isn't drunk. In recent times, his interests mostly lie at the bottom of a bottle.

7. What habits do you possess?
Cursing when entering battle, drinking. When sober, Cameron usually says a short prayer any time that one of the sacred weapons are drawn or displayed (one of Hextor's six favored weapons).

8. What secrets do you harbor?
Though it's the worst kept secret about him, Cameron would like to think that his reliance on his squire, Dairon, is masked well enough that most don't notice.

9. Are you rational or passionate about your feelings?
Cameron is a passionate man, and part of the reason he drinks heavily is to mask the despair and sorrow that comes to the surface. In better times, his mirth and resolve took the place of those feelings.

10. Are you superstitious or sophisticated beyond superstition?
One can hardly be sophisticated beyond superstition when he has witnessed the terrible powers of the dead.

11. How strong is your faith in your patron deity?
Though he once had a kind heart and looked upon the world with hopeful eyes, Cameron has always been a pious devotee of Hextor in his guise as patron of warriors, combat, and rulers.

12. How self-confident are you?
Cameron's self-confidence was nearly utterly destroyed when his people were massacred and he and his family were exiled for failure to protect the Principality of Atirr and the North Kingdom.

13. What drives you to adventure?
Cameron's current adventuring is as much by accident as anything else. After leaving his home under exile, he traveled to Blackwall Keep to seek out a former comrade-in-arms, the mage Marzena, in order to possibly recruit her and any possible followers she might have to aid him in his quest to defeat Delglath and his minions, reclaim his former lands, and restore face to his family. In his current situation, having met others with no small amount of power, Cameron is pondering if he can leverage a deal with these new adventurers wherein he will aid them on their quest if they agree to join his crusade against the undead at Rinloru.

If anyone is reading this who is a Greyhawk canonist, I'm sorry. I'm simply not up on much in Gary's playground, and any flubs I may have made when it comes to place names, etc. is merely just me doing what I can with maybe five minutes worth of searching, and is done merely to add flavor to my character. Having said that, I did actually fret a little over naming conventions. Obviously, it's my character, and I can name him Fiddlecake if I want, but the val part of the name stuck with me from concept, though I've never seen naming conventions that include anything like that in Greyhawk official products.

It's apparent from the name of Cameron's cohort, Dairon val Eite, that I used val as a noble honorific, or something of the sort, but I honestly have no precedent for it, as stated above.

I might do this exercise for Dairon, as well, at some point, but I actually do have a few things I want to cover...if I even get to those. Sometimes, just the APs are hard enough for me to remember to post.


she_wolf_02 said...

I do love that you do this, though I don't ask it of any of my players simply because I am running an adventure path and I am likely to not really use any of it in the game. But it adds life to the character and gives me some insight into your character, which is why I like it.

On a note that you mentioned in question 13: if I were a better DM [ (and if your character survived the game ;) ]I think it would be great to continue on an epic campaign based on your character's crusade. Sadly, I don't think I'm up to creating any game from scratch, and I'm sure I know less about Greyhawk than you do, even with my current studies on it.

Buddy Richards said...

Believe me when I say that it's exceptionally hard to get players to look into lore stuff for their characters, but I really do feel it adds to the campaign, and I enjoy character backstory, so I do it.

One of the things that really made the Eberron game I ran a while back (I think the first one you joined in on under me) was that most of the players had done a little research when making their characters.

You're a fine DM, and I don't blame you one bit for not wanting to run an epic-level campaign. Even Paul and I rarely tread those waters, and we have almost 40 years DM experience between us.

Buddy Richards said...

Exceptionally hard to get some players, I meant to say. Fingers going faster than my brain.