Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Dark Weavings - NPCs: The Slave Lords of Scornubel

Major Slave Lords

Baera Zauvirr
Elite skirmisher 2
Chaotic evil female drow cleric or warpriest of Lolth

Baera is a typically haughty female drow cleric of Lolth from Sshamath who has had to curb her supercilious disdain for males in order to be a part of the Slave Lords of Scornubel. After all, she is following her matron mother's orders.

What drives Baera beyond a drow's normal desire to rise to the top of her family is a fear of following in her mother's footsteps. While Baera was still a child she witnessed her mother's transformation into a drider after failing the test of Lolth. In truth, she hates Lolth but she knows no other way.

She prefers to wield a scourge in battle which has been enchanted to leave bleeding wounds.

Key Traits: dutiful
Goal: to prove her worth to her matron mother and to Lolth
Motivation: she doesn't want to fail Lolth as her own mother did
Fears: failure (she doesn't want to be transformed into a drider like her own mother)
Weaknesses: merely pawns of the Abolethic Sovereignty

Darthar the Lion
Solo soldier 3
Chaotic evil male human paladin (formerly of Torm, now Graz'zt)

Darthar is a legendary knight-captain of the Tormite paladins of Elturgard and a leader within the Eye of Justice. He stood watch upon Fort Morninglord for longer than any other and now he is the warden of the Dungeon of the Inquisitor.

As a mark of Torm's (former) favour, Darthar has the power, roar of the golden lion. For a moment his head transforms into a golden lion and he lets loose a roar in a close blast 3 that inflicts radiant and thunder damage. 

When bloodied, Darthar's body falls prone and a shadow demon emerges from his open mouth. This is not a separate creature but is actually Darthar's true form.

Key Traits: heretic, traitor
Goal: escape detection, amass wealth
Motivation: driven by greed
Fears: discovery
Weaknesses: his true form is revealed when bloodied

Gnasher One-Arm
Elite brute 2 or elite lurker 2
Chaotic evil male gnoll

Gnasher will never be a tribal chieftain as the loss of his right arm, particularly to the blade of an elf, caused him to appear weak to his fellow gnolls. Unusually for a gnoll, Gnasher possesses enormous levels of cunning and a willingness to feign weakness in the short term in order to gain something in the long term.

As noted in the DDi article, Playing Gnolls, Gnasher has the butcher's lure ability allowing him to effectively use a ghost sound cantrip to create the sound of a child or woman in distress. He can also feign weakness - granting combat advantage to his enemies (melee only) - only to lure them into overextending themselves. He then follows-up with deadly blows against all who struck him.
Key Traits: cunning, deceptive
Goal: ultimately he wants to rule a gnoll tribe
Motivation: Gnasher doesn't enjoy being underestimated 
Fears: losing in battle to an eladrin or elf (if in a group, Gnasher will avoid combat with an eladrin or elf if at all possible)
Weaknesses: he can be tempted by an offer to have his missing arm regenerated

Hriss the Hunter
Elite artillery 2
Chaotic evil male yuan-ti seeker

Hriss is an almost archetypal yuan-ti from Najara: he is entirely serpentine except that he has arms. Unusually though, he also has serpent heads for hands, although these do not affect his ability to wield his beloved longbow.

Hriss exists for the hunt. When not hunting he indulges his addiction for black lotus and other hallucinogens because he believes it allows him to commune with the World Serpent. In fact, his drug-induced hallucinations always involve the hunt. 

As Najara's agent amongst the Slave Lords, Hriss is largely a failure. The other Slave Lords know that he will accept sub-standard merchandise particularly if they sweeten the deal with access to new hallucinogens and/or arrange a hunt for him in the depths of the Dungeon of the Inquisitor. In his favour, however, is that those in Najara who sent him here have actually lost interest in this slaving operation.

Key Traits: hedonist
Goal: to hunt and dream of hunting
Motivation: the thrill of the hunt
Fears: withdrawal 
Weaknesses: addicted to black lotus

Zhargaunt of Darkhold
Elite controller 2
Evil male human brawler fighter|brutal scoundrel rogue

Zhargaunt is a whip-wielding sadist who perfected his pain-dealing arts in the dungeons beneath Darkhold. He graduated from torturing prisoners to taking prisoners or, more accurately, slaves. His primary role is ensuring that the morale of new slaves is broken.

In combat, Zhargaunt can fight at range with his whip. Alternatively, he can also fight like a bugbear strangler against adjacent opponents using the whip as a garotte and grab same and use them as a body shield. In building him, he is a combination of a brawler fighter and a brutal scoundrel rogue. (The powers of the Disgraced Noble theme from the Book of Vile Darkness also seem appropriate.)

Key Traits: brutal, bully, sadist
Goal: indulge his passion for causing pain
Motivation: to win back Khrulis's inheritance
Fears: Zhargaunt is a coward at heart
Weaknesses: his cowardice is reflected in a -2 penalty to Will defence against powers with the [fear] keyword; once bloodied, Zhargaunt will attempt to flee (it's basically an involuntary response due to his cowardice)

History of the Slave Lords

The short version:
  • Darthar is greedy;
  • Darthar heard whispers telling him to use his new position at the Dungeon of the Inquisitor to make money from the prisoners;
  • reached out to Zhent contacts;
  • Zhents brought in the others; and
  • Scornubel was decided as the main base due to heavy caravan traffic.
Minor Slave Lords

Dalmanu of Darkhold
Solo artillery 1
Evil male human wizard

While Dalmanu is not formally one of the ranking Slave Lords, he was the Zhent whom the Eye of Justice contacted with their business opportunity. Zhargaunt now owes him for his elevated role which allows him to indulge his penchant for cruelty as well as ensuring that his  pockets are well-lined with gold.

Key Traits: arrogant, disdainful, haughty, proud
Goal: to become Tolak of Darkhold
Motivation: he firmly believes that he is superior to others
Fears: placeholder
Weaknesses: placeholder

Elite soldier 2
Chaotic evil female drow swordmage/wizard

While appearing to be an eladrin, Marquiisa is actually a drow named Iyrtress Zauvirr.

Key Traits: placeholder
Goal: placeholder
Motivation: placeholder
Fears: placeholder
Weaknesses: placeholder

No comments:

Post a Comment