Second Darkness - Ali
Herbert 'Honey Badger' Bills
Herbert is a gnome with a honey badger familiar who he calls Sunstripe. He is an aspiring arcane trickster, but full time thief. His only outlet for his interest in magic is through the reading of magical tomes and artifacts which he steals and hordes.
What does Herbert look like?
Herbert is a gnome with decidedly average looks. He has dark brown, curly hair and keeps it cut short. His large crooked nose has been broken several times during various ‘encounters’ in the past. Dark and perceptive eyes observe the world from under his thick eyebrows.
Where do they live?
Born in Riddleport, Herbert has rarely left the city. He makes his home in the Wharf District, living in a ramshackle apartment above a tavern called ‘The Jealous Imp’ where he pays a small tenancy towards the landlady Annia. He favours living in the Wharf District because of its proximity to the Cypher Gate. Absent minded mages will often wander these parts of town leaving their pockets ripe for the picking. It’s not often Herbert will understand the language of the mages, but occasionally he can catch a sentence or two spoken in the common tongue, and subjects of those conversations always intrigue him.
What is their personality like?
Similar to his small-statured counterparts the halfings; Herbert is possessed by an intense curiosity. He channels his efforts towards uncovering secrets and spells hoping to further his understanding of magic and its nature. He pays special attention to the magical school of evocation, but any kind of magic or magical artifact is worth investigating. He has a certain level of intelligence, above that of most fellow thieves and certainly above that of the Gendarme, who he has had run ins with in the past. To an extent he is naive, especially about the world of magic, however his knowledge of Riddleport’s streets and dealings is noteworthy.
Herbert is a little jaded about the world, having been forced to raise himself since a (relatively for gnomes) young age when his parents were killed. The streets of Riddleport are certainly not kind, to a thief without tact and Herbert is aware of this. Though often well intentioned towards others he can come across as sardonic and has a tendency to be selfish, only looking out for himself as he has had to do for many years.
His contact with people is generally restricted to clients and those he steals from, being somewhat of a recluse which is atypical for a gnome. Because of this he is a little socially awkward, often missing subtle social cues and appearing to be overly abrupt or unfriendly. Despite his circumstances and social standing his outlook is generally positive and this may be put down to having inherited the gnome’s general positivity about the world. He is one of those personalities that takes perseverance to get along with, but once he makes friends he can be very amicable. Despite all this Herbert is a mischievous gnome who loves to play pranks on his acquaintances, even if he knows them well. He takes pride in humiliating his enemies more than hurting them. Given the opportunity, Herbert will often try to get the upper hand on others, but not if it puts himself or his friends in significant danger.
Do they have any phobias?
Herbert has fears and anxieties like anyone else. His standout phobia is a fear of heights. Because he is a bad climber and small in stature, he generally feels unsafe when up high. He has had to find ways to mentally process this fear so that he can successfully carry out his work as a rogue, but being in high places always makes him uneasy, and worse at decision making.
What has your character achieved?
Growing up alone and surviving on the streets of RIddleport is no easy feat, and Herbert takes pride in this fact. Aside from that, Herbert once managed to pick the pocket of a mage and understudy for Elias Tammerhawk, elected leader of the Order of Cyphers. The documentation contained notes and descriptions of spells and magic Elias was working on, encrypted in the mage’s Cypher Script, as well as a small note to a shadowy accomplice. Herbert immediately went to work deciphering the text, but aside from a rudimentary understanding of the general nature of the spells, has not managed to understand or implement them.
Where do they come from?
Herbert was born into Riddleport. His father was an alchemist who ran ‘The Lucky Cauldron’, owned by Boss Croat, in the city’s Leeward District. Along with his mother, they came to Riddleport after Gaston Cromarcky had established the relative order that still endures under his leadership.
Did they study at school?
Herbert received little education outside of the knowledge he picked up on from time spent with his parents and on the street. He is uneducated, like the majority of Riddleport citizens, but above average in intelligence, unlike the majority of Riddleport citizens.
Did something bad happen to them in their past?
Like his son, Herbert’s father had an obsession with magical artifacts and spells. He had somewhat more success with it though, and in Herbert’s youth managed to cast the familiar spell on his son successfully. This brought into the world Sunstripe, Herbert’s honey badger, and inspired in him a similar love for the arcane. Herbert’s mother was very intelligent, and a little overprotective. She supported Herbert’s father in his work, often helping out to run the shop and letting Herbert play out back. The town was more unruly back in those days and when Herbert was still young, the shop got robbed by armed thieves, in an episode that ended with the death of Herbert’s mother and father and the taking of the shop’s most valuable merchandise. Boss Croat immediately took away the rest of the stock and closed it down. With no one to turn to Herbert and Sunstripe had to (rather ironically) steal to fend for themselves.
Life was very difficult and Herbert often starved. Eventually he became very adept at thievery and especially pick pocketing. After a number of years he managed to track down the thieves who ruined his life, finding them in Boss Croat‘s employ. He meticulously planned their demise, and showed them no mercy. Unfortunately his identity was discovered during the attack, and word got back to Boss Croat. Herbert was forced to go into hiding outside of the Leeward District and take refuge above the ’The Jealous Imp’ under the landlady Annia in the Wharf District, a place he has been living ever since.
Herbert operates an illegitimate business out of his small apartment. Clients come to him with requests for objects and items that they would like stolen. Because of the uneasy rivalry between many of the city’s crime lords and Cypher mages, Herbert’s business is plentiful. He meticulously plans and steals objects for these individuals and is paid upon fulfilling his contracts to them. When possible, Herbert will steal magical artifacts. If he has stolen an artifact on behalf of a client, he will often learn as much about it as he can before informing the client of his success. In this way his knowledge of the arcane continues to grow, along with his thieving skills.
When he is not fulfilling contracts, Herbert will often steal and sell items to get by.
He is proficient with rapier and light crossbow.
Level up plan:
2 rogue levels
5th level unlocks Arcane Trickster
1st tier: Disable Device, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Perception, Spellcraft, Knowledge (arcana), Escape Artist
2nd tier: Acrobatics, Bluff, Disguise, Use Magic Device, Linguistics, Fly
3rd tier: Climb, Swim, Sense Motive, Appraise
1st tier: Magical Knack, Reactionary
1st tier: Toughness, Weapon Finesse (take on 3rd or 5th level), Improved Initiative, Arcane Armor Training, Greater Fortitude
2nd tier: Intensified Spell, Selective Spell, Spell Focus (Evocation), Greater Spell Focus, Spell Penetration, Greater Spell Penetration
Caltrops x5 – 5gp, 10lbs
Backpack – 2gp, 2lbs
Bedroll – 1sp, 5lbs
Bell – 1gp, -
Blanket, winter – 5sp, 3lbs
Case, map or scroll – 1gp, 1/2lb
Crowbar – 2gp, 5lbs
Flask – 3cp, 1-1/2lbs
Grappling hook – 1gp, 4lbs
Flint and steel – 1gp, –
Lamp, hooded – 7gp, 2lb
Paper – 4sp, –
Parchment – 2sp, –
Rope, hemp (50ft) – 1gp, 10lbs
Signal Whistle – 8sp, –
Soap (per lb) – 5sp, 1lb
Whetstone – 2cp, 1lb
Thieves tools – 30gp, 1lb
(Masterwork thieves tools – 100gp, 2lbs)
(disguise kit – 50gp, 8lbs)
Crossbow light – 35gp, 4lbs
Rapier – 20gp, 2lbs
Studded leather – 25gp, 20lbs
A female badger, Sunstripe has a stripe of yellow on her head