Kaisha doesn't overly stand out. When ready for combat, she usually is clad in a worn but well kept blend of leather armor and scale mail, wielding an unadorned longsword. She usually keeps her off-hand free. When not ready for fighting, she tends towards utilitarian clothing, lacking flashy buckles or detailed stitching. She usually keeps her hair in a ponytail or otherwise tied back, so as to keep it out of her eyes.
She is young, in her early twenties, but she has the look of someone who has seen more than they should have for their age.
For as long as she could remember, Kaisha has had had one single, driving force in her life.
Kill the Orcs.
As many as she could, and as painfully as possible. She wants them to suffer for the pain they caused her, tearing apart her life before it had even properly begun. She has vague memories of a time long ago when she lived in a house, with her family. They had been driven eastward by the Orcish attacks. She can remember being told that they had to leave, and only bring what was most important. She was happy though, because her parents were coming
But wherever they settled, the Orcs pressed on. No sooner had they started trying to rebuild their lives than they were warned that the Orcs approached once more, always sooner than the last time. One fateful night, an Orcish raiding party attacked the village they had recently settled in, her mother dieing with an arrow as thick as a dwarfs thumb protruding from her back. The next gap of time was a blur to her; running from the green-skinned brutes, seeing the remains of their handiwork and everywhere they went, smoldering ruin.
After what seemed an eternity of this, they, with so many others like them, took a last stand at Hydra Keep. This keep earned its name not for any resident beast or heraldic symbol, but for the seemingly endless tunnels leading out the back, each to a different place, and each fraught with its own dangers. She, with the rest of the children, were hidden in the keep itself, while her father, her hero, went to fight the Orcs and hopefully buy them peace at last.
Almost too quickly to be believed, Orcs were pouring in through the now-shattered gate. It was total chaos as everyone fled through the dark and twisting tunnels, some falling down chasms to their death, the stragglers being butchered by the pursuing Orcs. She was one of the lucky ones; she made it out to see the daylight again. But when she emerged from the caverns, she was not the same girl who had proudly watched her father march to his doom. Deep within her, something had sparked. Rage, and a desire for revenge. She would make them pay. Every last member of that misbegotten race.
For years she still traveled, and on the way met others fleeing the Orcs. Yet even among them, she was now viewed as different, and scary to the other children. While they variously were afraid of the Orcs or fought them in mock combat with their friends, she was the only one who truly wished to kill them. She once joined one of their games, and as she utterly refused to play an Orc she played as a human, and using one of the wooden play swords proceeded to break the arm of a child playing an Orc. It was then that the dwarf Mogrun found her, and saw her potential. He was no warrior, but he made weapons truly worthy of the term Dwarven'. Under him, she learned to operate a forge, to fletch arrows and to temper blades. She could not hope to be as good as he was, he had practiced his trade for longer than a human lifespan, but she was eager to learn and he was eager to teach.
Years later, when she had learned much from Mogrun, she set off on her own once more with a quiver of sturdy arrows, a bow and a sword she forged herself. She now had the equipment, but she yet needed to know how to fight. Traveling to a large town, she sought employment in the local guard. Being so near to the swamps, there were often threats to the town ranging from giant insects to sadistic lizard men. As with forging weapons, she was an eager student and there were plenty of opportunities to learn.
After a few years of employment, she decided that she'd had her fill of hunting the denizens of the swamp. With her fresh skills at combat, she set off to finally try her hand at hunting Orcs.
She is quite proud of her homemade sword, but always notices any minor flaw it may have picked up. She's often working on ways to revise it, be it adding a little bit more of a counterweight to getting the cutting edge of the blade at just the right angle for a balance of durability and sharpness. She's also been starting to keep notes on Orcs, usually rough anatomical sketches and vulnerable points that she can derive from them.
Kaisha's main focus is killing Orcs. She is happy to work with people, as long as none of them have Orcish blood, and she will volunteer her help if she overhears plans that involve worsening the positions of Orcs.
If she is in a situation that has no bearing on fighting her chosen foes, she tends to be fairly direct in her speech, and slightly distant. This is because she feels that anyone she cares about will either die or have to be left behind, and so she hides herself to avoid the pain it causes. She's really quite lonely, but she feels that the only kind of person she could open up to is one that is obsessive about hunting Orcs as she is, anyone else is usually put off by her devotion.
Hooks and Stuff
-Excuse me miss, what are you doing?
The PC's find Kaisha picking through a battlefield, inspecting Orcish corpses and making notes. PC's tend to think Necromancer at such moments.
-Oh, you want the obsessed lady!
The PC's need to either find the weakness in an Orcish position or otherwise find out some either obscure or specialty knowledge related to Orcs, anyone that knows Kaisha will quickly direct the PC's to her
-And the tensions mount...
Kaisha, in her zeal, has slain another Orc, or at least somebody with some Orcish blood. This one happened to have some standing in the local nobility / government / other important group, and the looming repercussions are dire.
-If you don't need (another) fanatical Orc hunter, Kaisha can easily be modified to hunt many other races with just as much vigor. Perhaps it was werecreatures, the raids occurring every full moon with increasing ferocity as the moon neared its equinox, or simply Bandits, pushed onwards by a shadowy force uniting the brigand bands.
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? Responses (6)-6
Updated: Expanded on a couple of minor points, and tried to come up with a more interesting sounding summary.
Its well written, but there is little to make me want to use her in a game. The whole killed my whole family now I hate all orcs is a little overdone. Too many quick PC backgrounds can be boiled down to the same idea. Also, you aluded to 'what she has become'. I think she needs to become something worse to be more interesting.
It really fleshes out the "I rolled a 4, I hate Orcs" concept that happens in many games. Good post that shows that even a typical history can have some flair.
She exists mostly to show just that even an otherwise bland character (In D&D terms, a level 1 ranger, weaponsmithing skill, favored enemy orcs) can be interesting if just fleshed out. Take from it what you will.
Its a nice piece to read.
Yeah, I'm with Strolen. Sure, it's a stereotype - and how many stereotypes do we routinely employ, anyway? - but this EXPLAINS the stereotype. Too many people are far too ready to turn their noses up at subs that don't hit minimum (but undefined) levels of Quirky!, Flashy! or Unique!
Beyond which, c'mon, folks ... what's the psychology behind an adventurer, anyway? Who goes off from living nice, safe, quiet lives to run off and deal with horrors on a regular basis, sleep on the ground in haunted ruins and pretty much be assured of an early, violent death unless you have at least a little crazy in you?