Hirelings About Town

by mshrm

I find that my players are often paralyzed by choice.

“What kind of character can I make?”

“Anything!  Anything at all!”

Deer-in-headlights look.

The same kind of thing happens when they try to get organized for the dungeon. It’s somewhat unusual when they come up with a plan and stick to it. Usually, they kinda meander in the general direction of some objective until they’ve gathered up enough treasure and wounds to make it worthwhile hiking home.

… and I suspect the paralysis is taking hold again. They seem to like the idea of hirelings, but I don’t feel like they’re taking advantage of the idea as much as they might like. I wonder if the reluctance might be a combination of choice-paralysis (“What kind of hirelings are there?” “Any kind you like!” sigh…) and not wanting to bog things down with a last-minute request for some strange combination of required traits.

When it comes to named hirelings, though, they’re all enthusiastic. Höss is very popular, for instance. (I can only assume that he’s good company on the hike, or knows a great chili recipe, or something.) So, I’m thinking, maybe the guys just need a list of folks who are out there, looking for work in the dungeon. Names for the faces, as it were.

So, here’s some folks who are known to be hanging around Tembladera, cadging drinks and looking for get-rich-quick schemes…

Alphonse the Dark didn’t get his nickname from his complexion, which comes in somewhere between “scholarly” and “fishbelly”. He’s a 125-point human demonologist. He’s been excommunicated for his interest in things that right-thinking folk shun, but he’s not really a bad guy. Something of a geek, and no athlete, he’s got a reputation for being a pain for his fellow party-members when it comes to hiking, climbing ropes, and the like. When it comes to his field of interest, though, he’s known to be quite competent.

Bermuda is an up-and-coming young thug, though she would style herself an “assassin”. She’s a 125-point human killer who fights using two-weapons, with a small axe and a long knife. She’s got a reputation for being a quick, vicious fighter with a real killer instinct, and for being a hard drinker when the action’s over. Her left hand bears a branded “T”, for “thief”, as a testimonial to her willingness to accept risk for the chance of wealth.

Brother Daryl the Other just arrived in town a few weeks ago to discover that he was the second cleric in town of his name. The original Brother Daryl is well-established in the church and well-known around town. Therefore, the new Brother Daryl gets the nickname. Brother Daryl is a 125-point initiate. He’s more of a preaching cleric, than a healing cleric. He always has a bit of religious scripture for every problem or topic of conversation. Having taken a vow to spill no blood in his holy work, he carries a small mace and shield.

Isryn Oldash is a 125-point human agent. She has a burning curiosity about the past, and a passionate dedication to getting rich off her research. She makes ends meet by organizing the sale of delvers’ loot, but what she really wants to do is to go into the dungeons themselves. If given the slightest chance, she will explain that most delvers are meat-heads who break their backs bringing out shiny rocks while using priceless artifacts as firewood. Her thinking is, if she were on the scene, she would be able to point out the really interesting treasures.

John, son of Jack, is a 65-point human laborer. He’s a big, good-natured fellow with a glorious mane of blond hair. They say he’s originally from The North, and has some barbarian blood, but his family have been settled, village-dwelling fishermen for generations. He’s never short for paying work, but nobody has ever accused him of being overly intelligent.

Nisa Iyuteyoyu is a young warrior from Asia, and a 62-point human guard. Her chosen weapon is the naginata. She has been trained to fight as part of a unit, standing in the second rank and using her weapon’s reach to harass the enemy. Though she’s still a bit green, she takes her duties as a soldier quite seriously.