The Top of the Mountain

Old Aug 22 '12, 4:36pm
ComicsFan ComicsFan is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 654
The Top of the Mountain

Top of the Mountain - Forum
Dungeons & Dragons 4e
Estimated Members Requested: 5

"Come over here, child. Let me tell you a story."

So many adventurers started just this way, with a grandfather or elder sitting you down and telling you stories of a far-off land with wonderous sights. He would delight you in grand, epic adventurers with untold riches and honor at the end. The good always defeated evil in the end.

Then you grew up, and realized that those stories aren't the way things really are. There is not always untold treasures at the end of an adventure, and often evil did triumph. Sometimes you had to DO evil to accomplish what you set out to do.

Life is not black and white. You learned that very quickly.

So when stories and rumors about activity starting up near the top of Wyvern Mountain, the old stories you heard come back to you. This is the same mountain that myth held had dragons and wyverns and other hordes of monsters. This is the same mountain that held untold treasures, according to some.

But you also know stories aren't the way things really are. You know other adventurers have climbed the mountain, only to return empty handed or not at all.

So, why are rumors about the mountain popping up now all of a sudden? Is there something new inside?

About Myself

I'm old.
I remember walking uphill 3 miles in a BLIZZARD just to play D&D, and we did all the math in our heads!!! I didn't have no fancy com-puter to our sheets -- we used ... a pencil! Young whippersnappers ....

Seriously, I started playing 1st Edition D&D in 1978 when I was 7. My parents bought me a Player's Handbook and encouraged me to use my imagination. 30+ years later, I'm a husband and father to an active 4 year old boy, and free time isn't what it used to be, so this is a nice compromise.

My Philosophy

My philosphy is simple and three-fold.
When a game ceases to be fun, change the game or stop playing.

What this means to me is that the primary duty of a DM is to try to make the game enjoyable, and that's what I aim to do. I'll need the players help, though. If there are suggestions you have, I not only want to know, I expect to know. If I'm screwing up somehow, please tell me. I promise to listen and I take criticism well (after all, I am married). Having said that ...

The rules are a tool for the story. Story will ALWAYS trump rules.

I do not want rulesmongers or rules munchkins. If something a player does is cool and adds to the story, we will make the rules fit it. I will not be a slave to the rules. Also, I'm not a fan of min/max players, which is why I don't want a stat sheet in you submission, but I DO want to see the character. At this stage, I don't care what your Strength stat is -- but I do want to know what makes your character tick.

Rules and stats are important, but they're not important NOW.

To sum it up, if you are a story-first, character-driven team player who loves to create with others and have a good time, I want to talk to you.

What I want

This is a 4th Edition game for 5 characters of 3rd Level.

My submission form for this game will have some unusual questions, and that's designed to try and take you out of your comfort zone and make you think more about the inner workings of your character.

Please feel free to expound as much as you want. You don't have to write a novel, but I do want more than 2 or 3 words per question.

Any questions or suggestion, please let me know. If you would rather answer some or all questions privately, feel free to use private tags or PM me your sheet. A little mystery hurts no one.

... except the DM. I hate mysteries.

--- --- --- ---



--- Answer the following questions in the Voice of your character ---

1. Why are you an adventurer?
2. You have the choice of saving an innocent girl or killing the wizard that holds her captive. Choosing to save the girl ensures the wizard escapes, leaving no trail for you to track. Choosing to kill the wizard ensures the death of the girl. Which do you do and why?
3. How do you like your eggs cooked and why?
4. If you were a king/queen, what would be your first edict?
5. What is your one regret in life?

Game Description:

A 4th Edition Adventure designed for 5 3rd level characters.

Last edited by ComicsFan; Aug 22 '12 at 4:56pm..
I was accepted due to some previous circumstances, which I can explain if ComicsFan wants me to. In the meantime, I'll show my app so you know what you're getting. =P


Name: Elliana 'Elly' Lyosha

Race: Tiefling
Class: Warlord (Leader)

Background/History: Elliana was born in a large city with great military might. Her father served as a captain to the army, with her mother as a nurse on and off the battlefield. Though they loved her, they held great pride in their jobs and expected her to follow in their footsteps. From a young age, Elliana was raised as a warrior by her father, with her mother teaching her basics in healing others. She devoted herself completely to the lessons. Since they made up her life, as did her parents' jobs, she made a connection in her young mind. Doing well in the army meant praise from her parents which meant they were paying attention and showing their love. She lived for that praise, even if her calm nature made it hard to tell that she embraced those words. The inherent calmness she had was from her father's lessons, where he taught her that no matter what happened on a battlefield, one must always remain in control of his or her emotions.

When she was thirteen, her father was killed on the battlefield. The loss of one of the only two people she was close to made her numb. She mechanically trained to be ready for combat, rather than with the passion she once had. At the age of fifteen, she joined as a soldier. In one of her first battles, the commander of their group was a newly recruited man of high status. More in his position for that reason than for smarts in battle, he panicked and made poor decisions for orders. As a result, nearly everyone in the group, including him, died. Also among those slain was Elliana's mother, who had been one of the medics for the group. This incident caused Elliana to harden further. She attributed her mother's death to herself, for not getting there quickly enough to protect her, and to the poorly chosen commander, whose errors had lead to their downfall. That caused her to focus on wanting to be in charge of a group of forces. Her guidance, she felt, would keep those soldiers safe, safer than they could be under the command of those like who she had served. She would not panic, cower, or put herself above others, and that would keep them alive.

Elliana served the next five years as a loyal soldier, making her way up the ranks to become a battlefield commander. They were about to go to war against a force as large as their own. The first few battles Elliana commanded went smoothly. A big battle after, however, led to her getting seriously injured guarding part of her forces from an ambush, most likely from a traitor on their side. She escaped from the area after seeing those under her command get to safety, taking another route to distract some of the enemies.

For the next several days, Elliana wandered, using the healing techniques her mother had taught her to keep herself alive. Still, her wounds were too severe to fully recover from. The lack of proper medical items made it impossible to prevent infection from setting in. It led to her collapsing at last, the only thought in her mind that she regretted not dying the same way her parents did, on the battlefield.

Her surprise was complete when she woke up in a small, warm house. The human who lived there introduced himself as Cyan Florin. He had evidently found her when searching the forest for herbs, as his profession was as a healer. What stood out to Elliana the most, from physical traits, was that Cyan was blind. He did well on his own, but other people in the small town kept their distance from him. As such, he led a lonely life, despite having a kind heart and wanting to help the injured.

As she recovered, Elliana-now called Elly, as Cyan began to refer to her as, and she started to as well-began to build a close relationship with Cyan. His solitude gave her a connection with him, and never had she been with someone who regarded her with such openness in their emotions. To most, she had been regarded as a leader, a woman of great intellect and beauty that was worth respecting on a battlefield. But that never gave her an attachment with anyone. She was an icon more than a person in her squadron. Cyan's words and actions coaxed out the feelings she had long ago buried. She began to realize that it was not life in the army that held so much appeal. Rather, she had wanted a connection to her parents, and then felt an obligation to keeping people safe. She could help people outside of war, as she now saw in Cyan, who healed even though he had never been on a battlefield.

Two years passed, and their feelings grew. Elly had decided to remain with Cyan, to act as a guard for him from the many threats life could have, especially to one who could not see. She also felt romantically inclined toward him, though she was too nervous to ever say anything of it. She considered doing so, but lost her chance when, one morning, Cyan was gone. There was no hint as to where he went or what caused him to. Elly knew Cyan would never leave without telling her, at least if he could consciously decide. Something had gone wrong, and she was determined to find out what.

In spite of her initial worries, the townspeople had nothing to do with it. They had always kept their distance, but never showed outright hostility to Cyan. It was closer to them feeling uncomfortable around him, even if they sometimes needed his medical expertise. When Elly ensured they were telling the truth, she set off, ready to travel until she found him again.

1. Why are you an adventurer?

"You mean, as a warrior? It was all I knew how to do. I moved through life as a fighter, using my mind and body for the task, thinking nothing of others in terms of emotion. Meeting Cyan changed that. It made me question why I went on with no solid purpose. I was considering stopping my life of fighting altogether, but with what has just happened... I cannot. Not until Cyan is safe."

2. You have the choice of saving an innocent girl or killing the wizard that holds her captive. Choosing to save the girl ensures the wizard escapes, leaving no trail for you to track. Choosing to kill the wizard ensures the death of the girl. Which do you do and why?

"There isn't enough information for me to make a decision based on just that. Is the wizard someone who would go on to kill other people? Or was he just after that girl? Without a trail, could he still be found later? Is the girl an innocent? I would prefer knowing all this before choosing. If I was thrown into that situation, however, and had to make a decision without the facts... I would save the girl, most likely. It's not logical, to risk so many people by doing that, yet... I think that is what my heart would mandate before my brain could process it."

3. How do you like your eggs cooked and why?

"Eh? Um... That's an odd question. But the answer is sunny-side up. That's how Cyan made them the first morning I spent with him. They've remained my favorites since. I don't have a logical reason for particularly liking them that way, yet I continue to do so."

4. If you were a king/queen, what would be your first edict?

"I do not think I would make a good queen. If I did land in that situation, my first edict would be, 'Bring forth those who would do well in advising me.' It would be up to me to make sure that the people that came were capable of the job, and not in it for selfish reasons. Still, I would need the advice so I could be a fair ruler."

5. What is your one regret in life?

"Not being there for Cyan. He vanished, and even if I had no way of knowing it would happen, I feel responsible. I am his eyes, his shield, his guard, even if this was never said out loud. I should have been with him at all times to take that role. Instead, one moment of negligence led to this. It is my job to make amends for it."

It should be noted that Kurgan is conceptualized as a Reach-using Runepriest. Standing behind one or two front-liners and both hitting as well as supporting the front-liners.


The Crimson Song
Jennifer Newport

Half-Elf Bard

"I find it odd. I find it odd that tonight, of all nights, you speak to me."

"Yes, I've seen you before. You're the man who buys the ginger and ale every Wednesday when I play."

"I take notice. Every eve and morn, I see the men come and go. Learning them is what I do."

"Of course I can learn you. Though, I do request one thing before I do."


Gregory Winhelm
"A Violin Bow Killed Him."

“I was born… nineteen, twenty years ago on the Turtegiel – what you would call a pirate ship. The ship and her crew were known up and down the eastern ports, and merchant vessels reportedly had a flee on sight warrant for the ship. My little life would probably have been fine, had my dad been an elf. My mother, quartermaster of the ship, bedding a human? I don’t think she ever saw me. She went into the tides faster than dad could do anything. We’re making our way to port, and my dad gets the idea to grab a few jewels before he and I get dropped into a leaky rowboat and make way for land.

Give us a few years, and dad has settled into a nice port, running one of the more popular pubs, knowing what sailors like. I don’t remember a lot about those times, having been little. The first thing I distinctly remember was getting the one thing of my mother’s he could stow away with. Her violin.”

She runs her fingers softly across the instrument sitting in her lap, streaks of condensation forming on the wood and slowly vanishing without a trace.

“I don’t doubt dad hated me for a bit after giving it to me. I screeched on these strings more than I probably should have. But then I played. And played. I picked up chanties men sang in the late hours of the night and would practice them. One night, I walked downstairs as the men sang, and started playing along.”

She looked down at the instrument, balling her hands into fists.

“I hate myself for doing that. A few of the men were looking at me, rather, the violin. Dad told me to go on up to bed, and some of the men were telling me I did a good job, so I didn’t think anything was wrong. I fell asleep. I woke up and went downstairs. Dad wasn’t there, only one of his friends that helped him on his busier nights. Dad was gone.

I only talked through these strings for the next four or five years. I had never known my mother, and my father was taken away, and probably killed, by those men the first night I played. William cared for me, but we never really spoke. But, two years ago, he told me something about that one song I played. It was the chanty for the Turtegiel’s crew. Only the crew members of the ship were brave enough to sing along. Serce Linde, the blood melody.

I started playing at night, and the sailors would sing along with me. I’d play the song every now and then, catering to the crew if they were in the audience. Some nights, it was the loudest chorus I had, others, not a single voice was raised. On those nights when there were one or two singers, I’d offer a ‘treat.’ If they were around my age, I just passed them over, much to the dismay of some of the more… assertive in their group.

In their individual rooms at opposite ends of the halls, they wouldn’t hear one another. The routine was always the same. Hum a lullaby. Maybe that lulls them off to sleep. The ones that snore before their final performance pass away quietly. Those that don’t are still denied a woman’s caresses. Massages… Every time. They’re face down and never see it coming. And every morning, the beds are clean, as if they had never been used in the first place. And every time, the city watch always can cross a name off the list of the crew.

Recently, there haven’t been any voices to sing to the song. Maybe the ship has moved on. I haven’t.”

As you remain sitting, she again looks down at her violin, becoming absorbed in its reflective surface for a moment, the tavern all but silent. She gives a small, quick peek up, seeing you still there. Seeming surprised you have remained, she pops up in her seat, her voice showing a huge inflection from the darker note of her previous statements.

“Was there something else you wanted to speak about?”

“A couple questions? Fine by me.”

“I just started with this whole thing, so some would probably say it’s ‘for the experience,’ or ‘for fun.’ This will help me visit more ports. And help me find more of the crew.”
Her grasp on her bow tightens slightly.

“Kill the wizard,” she says without any hesitation or even elaboration of the question. “Why? A dark wizard is like a group of pirates. They never only do something once.”

“Thickly scrambled and fluffy. Dad and William always made great scrambled eggs, and I’ve picked up the knack for cooking them myself for our early morning customers.”

“Piracy is outlawed, so I would enforce it more strongly. Disguise a few galleons as trade ships. Make the water safe and peaceful for people to travel. I might offer to hire some of the pirates to assist in taking the seas from the others.”

“Playing Serce Linde the first time.”
Although she pulls off a good bluff, and she did seem genuinely happy for the past few questions of a more reminiscent nature, this last response has her knuckles white as she clenches the bow of her violin. She stands, knowing her act isn’t the best she’s had, and walks out the door, needing some time to relax – and probably to find a place to play.

One strange thing that she doesn’t mention was the striking scar across her eye or how she got it; it seems like that would have been a story to tell.

Name: Renoux 'The Harlequin'

Race: Eladrin
Class: Swordmage (Defender)
Description: A pale madman, the Harlequin dresses in the tattered rags of a court Jester, painting his face with garish makeup that he then forgets he's wearing. He has the tendency to talk to himself, to speak in poetry or song, and his eyes are different colors- one metallic shiny green, the other luminescent purple.

Name: Arinestril Suranyie Tanestrilan

Race: Elf
Class: Ranger

I've edited my original application slightly, cleaning up the formatting and removing references to Wild Shaping in her backstory. I've never really looked too far into Essentials classes, so I was surprised to see the Predator Druid fits my mental image of Gwen a lot better than the original class. She's a lot more nature hippie-ish, less turn into a bear and eat you.

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