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Started by Chassic, January 08, 2008, 08:19:52 PM

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The Tale of Magda, the Mother Ghoul.

Folks tell misbehaving children to do as they are told else Magda will come for them in their sleep. She'll take you away and gobble you up, or worse, she'll make you like herself. The story is different with each telling and folk have a way of bending the story so's it's most effective for their particular child. Many have heard of Magda. Few know the truth of the tale. It was just over twenty five years ago when the woman who would be known as the Mother Ghoul died. It was not an easy death. Nor was it the only death that night. Come the emerald dawn six lives had ended by claw and by tooth ... and two lives had begun.

They descended upon the farmstead in the middle of the night. A pack of wandering ghouls slashed and chewed and tortured the unsuspecting family. Distracted by the rush of blood and the frenzy of feeding they allowed one to escape. Magda, the eldest daughter, was able to bar herself in the storm cellar. She found safety from the ghouls there. She lit a lantern to assess the damage done to her body. She had escaped, but not before the ghouls had slashed her terribly and nearly gnawed off several fingers. She tore up her nightdress to help bind her wounds. She was in bad shape, but she would make it through the night. That is when the first contraction hit her. It was too early; Magda had nearly a month to go before her child was due. With the next contraction she knew something was terribly wrong. Magda's birthing screams were echoed by those of her dieing family above. Alone and locked away in a storm cellar Magda died, her child still not yet born.

That was the end of Magda, and the beginning of the Mother Ghoul. Some say that the ghoul's curse of unlife was passed to Magda in her moment of death. Others say that it was love for the unborn child still inside her that triggered the transformation. Whatever the truth may be, the result was undeniable ... Magna was now a ghoul. She desperately ripped at her flesh with razor sharp claws, tearing the child from her belly. It was alive!

From here it is uncertain exactly what happened. It is known that Magda the Mother Ghoul managed to care for her child. She raised it for six years out in the wilderness. She survived by hunting game and foraging. In desperate times she was forced to raid nearby livestock. It was these raids that caused her undoing. Too many complaints of slaughtered cattle got the attention of a local lord. He sent a party of adventurers out to investigate. They were able to track Magda back to her lair, a storm cellar under an abandoned farmhouse. There they confronted her. She killed many in the group, but in the end she was forced away by the overpowering will of the group's paladin. What they found in her lair shocked them. It was a young boy. He was a savage, wild thing. They captured him and took him away from Magda's lair.

When Magda was finally able to overcome the paladin's will she raced back to her lair. She found her son was missing. They had taken him from her. In that moment the last bit of humanity slipped from her rotting mind. She would find her son if she had to search an eternity. And search is what she did. She would slink through the night, sneak into homes, and snatch children from their beds, hoping it would be her lost son. At first she would just let them go once she realized that it was not her son. Over the years, as the grip of insanity grew tighter, she would devour them. Sometimes she would leave them mortally wounded in their beds so they too would rise as ghoulish children in the morning. To this day it is believed that Magda still searches for her lost child.


Player Name: Patrick Buccella
What is the character's full name? Nicknames? Charon (The Shadow of Death). He does not know his family name.
What is the color of the character's hair, eyes, and skin? Charon's hair is black and rather thick and wiry. It tends to stick straight up. His eyes are very dark as well, nearly black. His skin is pale, the result of a lifetime spent hiding away in a morgue or temple basement.

What is the character's general appearance? While in the city he is usually "dressed up" in his dark grey mortician's garb. This outfit includes shiny black shoes, cropped jacket with short tail, light grey vest and gloves, and black stovepipe hat. While out wandering he looks very similar to a ranger or rogue. He typically wears studded leather armor, with gloves and wields a short bow, and dagger.
What is the character's age? Charon is 26.

Where was the character born? Charon is not really sure where he was born. That information was lost during his youth while he was being shuffled around between orphanages and temples. He remembers an abandoned house and storm cellar, but he does not know where it is located.
Describe the character's family. Charon is not aware of any living relatives.

Has the character begun his/her own family? Charon has never known the touch of a woman. It is not likely that he ever will as he finds the touch of the living to be ... uncomfortable.

Has the character ever done anything else (besides adventuring) for a living? Charon is a mortician. He has also been known to act as a "sin eater" in areas where this custom is practiced.

General attitudes & approach: Charon is very uncomfortable around the living. Imagine that you are the sole living person in a world of undead. That is how Charon feels every day. Despite his attraction to necromancy he is not evil, nor does he view the practice of necromancy or the existence of the undead as innately evil. Charon has a very druidic outlook on life. He feels that there is a balance to the natural order of life and death. Terrible things can happen when that balance is disturbed.

When or how was the character educated? He learned all of his skills while working in various temples tending to the dead.

What are the character's political and religious beliefs? Charon has no political agenda. He feels that any government that serves to provide for and protect its people is acceptable. Charon has no formal religious beliefs. He worships no gods. He is actually opposed to many of the "good" religions based upon their overwhelming hatred and persecution of the undead.

What is the character's moral code? Charon believes that people (living and undead) should be allowed to "live" in peace. He can not tolerate those who purposely end the lives (or unlives) of others for their own gain.

Does your character have any prejudices? Charon is not very tolerant of paladins and zealous clerics.

How would your character handle an insubordinate servant? Charon would not have servants, unless they were controlled undead servants. In that case they would either be serving to right a wrong done to them in life or to make penance for sins committed in life. Neither option allows for insubordinate behavior. However, if they did manage to escape his control he would work to recapture or destroy them as quickly and thoroughly as possible.

What would the character die for? What would they be willing to sacrifice
the lives of their friends for?
 Charon would die to protect the life (or unlife) of another. He would sacrifice the lives of his friends if doing so would save more lives.

Who is the one person your character trusts the most? His mother.

How would your characters parents describe him? That may never be known!

What was the best moment of the characters life? Worst? The best and worst was hearing the tale of Magda the Mother Ghoul for the first time.

What flaws does the character have? Is he quick to judge people? A slob? He is very nervous around people. He can be nearly paralyzed in large crowds. He is capable of interacting effectively with others, but it usually appears forced or rehearsed.

What advice would you give your character? Learn to love the touch of living flesh and get yourself a woman.

List the 5 most important people in the character's life. His mother, who overcame severe hardships to raise him. Rutger Rolingsfurrow, the paladin who "saved" him. Father Carrick, the cleric who taught him how to care for the dead. Scurry, a spider pet that he had at the orphanage. Collinsworth, a skull that he kept in his room and talked to, often.
What is the character's "big secret", and what will happen if it is discovered? His mother. He would likely be ostracized even more than he is now, perhaps even hunted by zealous religious fanatics.

"Hey, I've got an interesting job for you..." Name 3 jobs that your character might find interesting. Help a ghost to find its eternal rest. Bring a murderer to justice. Recover items stolen from a defiled burial site.

How will the character die? What would you consider a good end to a life well lived for this character?  Charon will become a lich at 20th level. He will be feared by those who deal in souls as currency (such as hags and demons), those who cause unnecessary death (such as religious crusaders and murderers) and those who disturb the resting places of the dead (such as tomb robbers). In the end, forces of good and evil will ally to defeat him.

What might someone seeing the character for the first time think? My, what an odd man.

Does the character have any goals? He would like to find his mother and grant her some peace.

What is the character's personality? Charon is usually quiet. He keeps to himself and observes the lives going on around him, from a distance. He is capable of carrying on a conversation and, through his time spent as a mortician, knows how to deal with grieving people. However, it is not a skill that comes naturally. Often people are able to pick up on his discomfort in social situations. At these times it seems that Charon's behavior is forced and unnatural or rehearsed.

Any reoccurring mannerisms? Charon is very polite even though he is standoffish. He always wears gloves in public. He has a very wide "personal space". When he is nervous he straightens his clothing. When "working" with the dead he often converses in whispers with them.

What is this character's "thing"? That is, what action, activity, saying, motion, mannerism, etc., would be considered their "trademark", such that if I were to do it, others would say "oh, now you're acting like [this character]"? Charon's "thing" would be his avoidance of direct contact and general uneasiness with the living.

What is her first reaction to a situation? Stay calm, act to nullify any immediate threats, assess the situation, and make decisions with an even mind.

What would be the ultimate magic item for this character? Anything that allowed him to interact with the dead (speak with dead), allowed him to control more undead, create stronger undead, or allowed him to turn his foes into shadows (or granted a place to store those shadows).

What would be the worst curse this character could ever receive? To be cut off from communicating with the dead or to loose/reduce his control over undead.

Are there certain things the character just cannot do? Get close to people; perceive himself realistically, etc. That is, what do people who know this character well criticize about them? He can not stand the touch of living flesh. He does not hug, kiss, or even shake hands. Imagine living in a world populated by friendly zombies. No matter how well you know them, would you ever hug one? Kiss one? That is how Charon feels about the living.

What does your character hate? Charon hates those who end lives prematurely and without reason. He also hates those that destroy souls or deal with souls as currency.

What does your character love? Charon loves his mother.

How does the character perceive government? Those who are opposed to the government? Charon appreciates government in its role as a provider and protector of the people. He supports "good" governments and opposes oppressive ones. He would view the deeds of any government in the same light as he would view the deeds of a person.

How did the character gain his abilities? Much like a sorcerer, Charon's necromantic abilities are innate. He feels they are a gift from his mother.
What motivates him to act as a hero now? The love of his mother taught Charon that all creatures are deserving of a chance to live. Being taken away from his mother by "good and righteous" people taught him that good is not always right. He acts to protect life and the sanctity of death because that is what he understands best. His ideology is a bit unusual, but he is definitely a heroic necromancer.

How did his peers treat the character as a child? His elders? He avoided any unnecessary contact with anyone. He mostly just kept to himself talking only with the corpses he was working on, his pet spider, and his friend Collinsworth the skull.

What does your character hope to accomplish by adventuring? He hopes to prevent unnecessary deaths, avenges wrongful deaths, bring peace to the undead, and provide punishment/penance for those who have caused death.

Why is this goal more important than his safety? (i.e., Why would you take up adventuring, rather than being a nice, safe accountant?) He has a deep understanding of the suffering caused by unnatural deaths.

What is the character's kryptonite? What is their weakness or what will paralyze them with fear? Truly powerful, evil, hateful undead do frighten Charon. They represent the most unnatural perversion of the cycle of life and death. They are death upon death. It is what he fears his mother may have become and, secretly what he fears he may become as well.

What does the character do to relax? Embalms a corpse, whispers to the dead, feeds spiders.

Describe the characters ideal mate. A really well preserved and intelligent undead creature that shares his outlook on (un)life. They say you always marry your mother!

What is in your character's pockets, right now? If he has been living in one place for more than a few days he has probably found a new spider friend and collected a few plump flies to feed to it.

What do they normally carry in their pockets that they don't have right now, but wish they did? Most likely Charon has absolutely nothing in his pockets. He is a rather existential guy and has little need for material goods.

What is the silliest thing your character has ever done? Charon once found a dead cat. It was pregnant so he rushed it home and cut it open. Inside he found six dead kittens. Disappointed, but not thwarted, he filled six jars with embalming fluid and kept the kittens inside as pets. When it was time for him to move on to another town he buried them in a field beside their mother.