February 22, 2019, 11:54:22 AM
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|Character Name||Arn of the Roots|
|Summary||Arn isn't tall, but he's stocky, the kind of build designed to take a beating, get back up, and feed whatever the heck decided to pick a fight its own face. He moves with the grace of a jungle predator, and apart from the long, snowy white hair and the fluffy thick white cloak, he dresses simply, sometimes in nothing more than a loincloth. At his waist is a woven leather belt with a magnificently crafted ancient shortsword, and a woven leather whip.|
|Fur/Skin/Scale Colour||Tawny gold pelt with black rosettes|
|Hair Colour||White, worn long and swept over his left eye.|
|Eye Colour||Gold, slit pupil.|
|Clothing||Wears tribal leathers, depending on the temperature, and a snowy white fur cloak.|
|Weaponry||Carries an ancient shortsword and a high quality whip|
|Outstanding Features||Nasty scar across left eye, barely missed crippling injury at the teeth of a lightomen snake|
|Background||Arn of the Roots would be a clanless drifter except for one thing, his sister. His family was lost to him in his youth when the tree that they were sheltering from a storm in was shattered by lightning... an unfortunate occurence, the three youngest children were the only survivors. Arn escaped unscathed, wondering afterwards what, and from where the feeling of forboding had come from that had caused him to jump into the next tree just in time. His younger sister was greviously injured by the incident, scarred across her lower back and legs by splinters of the shattered tree, crippling her legs to near uselessness, though the clan healer was able to save her life. The youngest brother blamed Arn for their family's tragedy and their sister's state, though it had been Arn's fast reflexes that had kept her from tumbling into the abyss and her certain death. Raised by his clan, he took on the responsibility for caring for his crippled sister to prevent her from being left to the jungle as those who were severely disabled usually were. Meanwhile, his brother was an angry haunting voice at clan gatherings that sought to turn all against him, both by trying to cast guilt upon him for the tragedy of which his sister was a constant reminder, and for his insistence on carrying her weight and flaunting tradition and practicality.
When Arn came of age, he sought to prove the growing group of naysayers in the clan wrong by being the youngest in clan memory to hunt the deadly lightomen snake. Equipped with naught but a stone knife, he trekked into the deeps of the jungle to seek victory or his death... and nearly found death. The lightomen snake that he found was easily thirty feet long or more, and jumped straight at his head. Again, only an urgent forboding seemed to save his life, though only barely; The snake's fang nearly tore out his left eye, leaving a deep scar, and traces of poison. Arn, however, still had his wits about him, and stabbed his blade upward into the snake's neck, severing arteries and muscle, and as he wrapped it up to keep it from running, he severed its spine completely. Arn managed to drag the several hundred pound beast up into the lighted realm of the jungle where he collapsed. His eye had been missed by the fang by millimeters, but the poison had turned the wound septic, and was slowly seeping into his system. Only the quick actions of his witnesses saved his life, slowing the poison enough to let him live and fight it off, though leaving him with a deep, jagged scar across his eye.
Arn skinned the snake and the feast commenced on the snakemeat, which happens to be a delicacy, a good Mas'qath'actl cook able to take the tough meat and make it absolutely mouth-watering... most cooks get little practice in the art, however. The snake became a reversible leather and fur cloak, and Arn took to being quieter and wearing his hair shaggy and long, across the scarred eye, taking to exploring the deep passages of the jungle. His brother's faction, however, was only more voiciferous, starting on slanderous tales of foul witchcraft aimed not at Arn, but at his sister. A series of illnesses consistent with minor poisoning seemed to cement it in the clan's mind that Arn, despite his prowess, was harboring a blight upon the clan, and powerful voices began calling for his sister's death.
Having cared for her this long, Arn was not about to leave her to her death. He fabricated a leather harness and carried her out of the clan's lands on his back, taking the clan name "of the Roots" in favor of the name of the people who were willing to kill a poor, crippled girl. Moving closer to the mountains, Arn made the decision that he would have to possibly start living like the Humans, in order to have a safe place to care for his sister. He prayed to the mountain for its permission, and began his trek.
Arn had only heard stories and tales of the strange humans, so when he saw his first zeppelin, he nearly fell out of his tree. This thing was made by someone's hands, and as big as a cloud, painted a gleaming silver, and it seemed to hum as it held station above the forest, tiny little wings (Arn had no idea about propellers at the time) thrashing the air to fight against the wind.
Arn watched, mystified, as the giant thing opened up and seemed to spit out some kind of platform on a rope, strange, furless creatures getting on the platform and descending upon it to the forest below. Arn went to investigate. The furless things came in different shapes and sizes, and carried odd tools. They descended into a great charred spot in the jungle, disembarking upon the charred stumps and lower branches, poking about and seeking a way deeper in. Arn followed, narrowly avoiding detection several times. Then one of them turned to his hiding spot and walked over, a slender female with pointed ears and a suprisingly pretty face, for its lack of fur.
You hide well... but I think we might talk better face to face..." she said, in his own language, though heavily accented. Dumbfounded, he stood, retreated to retrieve his sister, and returned, making sure to turn himself out well before returning, wearing his Lightomen fur and carrying his sister in his arms. Despite his fairly short stature, he cut an impressive figure, wearing the snakefur cloak and armed with the stone knife he had killed it with.
Through a bit of pidgin, Arn and the elf (for that was what he was talking to) found out about each other, that they were an group of curious people ("Archaeologist" doesn't translate well to the Mas'qath'actl tongue), who seemed to want to know why lightning was striking this spot in the forest, over and over and over... there was something down in the trees, and whatever it was clearly attracted the anger of the sky. Arn found out that they did indeed come from a human city, many weeks travel to the south, even by airship. Arn considered his options. He had prayed to find a mountain that would not smite him for daring to live that high, and these people seemed to be from such a place. They seemed curious as to what it was about this spot that made the sky-god so angry... and Arn likewise was curious. Arn looked to the elf and proposed a deal. He would assist them in finding the answers to their questions, if they would shelter his sister and allow him to stay by her side. The jungle was far too hazardous for a cripple, especially one without a clan.
The furless group seemed to hesitate... Arn believed he had offered a fair deal. The platform went up and down again, this time bringing more people. Arn noticed that one of these was exceptionally flashily dressed, and the elf from before translated as he seemed to be the one in charge. Arn's proposal was accepted with much relief from him; he placed his sister on the platform, wrapped in his cloak, and lightly descended into the tangle of the charred lower jungle.
Guiding a group of curious people was far harder than going alone, Arn quickly realized; these people seemed to have no idea about the plants already invading the charred stumps and branches and roots, and Arn had to save at least one from blundering into a cleverly disguised whipvine thicket, and saved another from a rather unpleasant poisonous thorn bush. Soon they found the thing they were looking for. Arn was baffled. He had seen plenty of rocks, but never one like this... it was smooth, the surface curved, and so shiny he could see his reflection in it. He looked at himself in his first proper mirrored surface, touching it curiously. Meanwhile, these strange people seemed to dance and celebrate raccously, not caring what heard them.
Arn tried to hush them, but another predator of the deeps had heard the vibrations... this one skittering on many legs. Arn snatched a bowie knife away from an elven pathfinder and stood his ground; he knew this beast, it was not afraid of the light, and his sister and these poor kittens were all behind him.
The Deathbringer was upon them; it was no lightomen snake for speed, but what it lacked in speed and poison it made up for in sheer toughness and armor. Arn knew that hitting it in its second armored segment would kill it, but that segment was by far the best protected. As the giant centipede-looking preadator burst into their view, splinters flying, Arn didn't wait. With his stone knife in one hand and the "borrowed" bowie in the other, he lunged at it and slashed its eyes, blinding it.... the predator thrashed, enraged, forgetting the easy prey and trying to attack the creature of whirling sharpness clinging to its back and trying to stab it. It tried rolling over, but it was too slow, and Arn managed to find a joint in its armor that the blade would take in, and cut its innards apart, shredding at least three of its five hearts and causing the beast to lose steam and slowly collapse. The Pathfinder's knife was politely and casually cleaned and handed back to him.
"This rock nearly cost your lives..." he said simply. The scientists were quiet from then on, even as they were rigging the lift straps to hoist out the piece of old hull plating (for that is what it was). Arn, for having saved the lives of many scientists was welcomed... if not with open arms, then at least with well earned respect. He was afforded a home, which he actually requested a small residence in close proximity to the elves, down in the farming communities. His sister lives there, while Arn works to provide for her by being a general help to many scientific endeavors farther north in his old native lands. The pay is decent... and on one trip, he made a major find of his own. Buried down at the bottom of yet another spaceship wreck, this one otherwise picked clean millennia ago, the trees forcing joints in the broken hull... Arn found a knife.. not any ordinary knife, but one of the same pattern as the crude bronze blades used by the Mas'qath'actli of the shore-lying jungles. This one, however, was stronger and lighter than anyone had ever seen; the blade was a matte black with a lacework of gold filigree in it, and an edge that made razorblades look like butterknives. Arn kept it.... not because it was a unique new find... there were two or three other known specimens, one in the institution's vault... but because he was really tired of trying to take things down with a borrowed knife.
|Occupation||Drifter, scout, translator, and guide for a Freehold research institution|