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ID: 5179


July 15, 2008, 3:16 pm

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Bruin the Bellringer


The "inside man" for a group of brigands.

Bruin is a giant of a man, with powerful arms. He has an everyday kind of face, virtually indistinguishable from any other man on the streets. However, he stands well over six and a half feet tall, and his chest is as large around as a boulder. He can usually be seen wearing rough wool clothing, and the thick leather gloves that denote his profession.

Bruin was born to a pair of farmers near the little town of Vorwin. Merely a smudge on the map. He had a normal life, working when he had to, and resting when he could. But when he came of age, he left his family to make his way in the town. Once there he realized that his hopes of fortune were far from coming true, so he took the first job that he could find. That just happened to be ringing bells at the one church in town.

That’s what he did, day in, day out, for the next ten years. His life became monotonous, but safe. But, recently, his habits have begun to change. The bells have begun to ring during his time off, and he is frequently seen in the local tavern, sitting in a dark corner. Also recently, there has been a startling drop in the numbers of travelers through the area. These travelers made up such a large percentage of the Vorwiners’ income, that the town council has had several meetings to discuss the lack of funds.

In reality, quite a lot of traffic is going along the roads toward the town, but most of it is not arriving. The travelers are being rerouted through a side road, one that leads through a canyon. In this spot, the travelers are waylaid by a group of brigands, and robbed of all valuables, they are then sent foreword to the next town, completely bypassing Vorwin. Strangely, this is not the fate of all of the people. Only the truly wealthy, and merchants carrying the rarer goods are assaulted.

What’s really happening is that the gang of brigands that have taken residence in the area is using Bruin as a contact. He listens around until he hears of something really worth the trouble of stealing, and then signals the others using his bells. The code is simple, first a certain series of notes to alert the band that he is sending a message, then the hour of the day that the target will be traveling by. After another set of notes, Bruin tolls out the number of guards, and then signals goodbye. These tollings are always two days before the assault, so as to eliminate one more signal. The victims are sent past Vorwin so that they cannot tell what happened to the guardsmen there, who would be more likely than outsiders to put together two and two to realize what Bruin has been doing.

Special Equipment
Bruin has his thick leather bell ringer’s glove, made to protect the hands from rope burns, and a sturdy wooden cudgel.

Roleplaying Notes
Bruin can be seen wandering the streets or in the tavern, when not ringing, that is. He will most likely not give up much information, and if questioned about the brigands, will become stoically silent and find an excuse to leave.

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Comments ( 5 )
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July 15, 2008, 15:16
Updated: Finished, and being posted as a normal submission.
Voted manfred
July 21, 2008, 15:07
What a nice minor NPC, compact and to the point. Now, foretelling in two days advance where travellers will be is not that easy, but I'm sure skilled brigands will keep an eye out. Of course, the little town will sooner or later learn that it has such a dangerous bunch close to it, and will attempt to remove them... sounds like an ideal job for a group of adventurers.
Voted valadaar
July 21, 2008, 20:13
Not bad, though I would not imagine this scam lasting all that log. Most people would put two and two together eventually.
July 25, 2008, 9:28
This is a minor criminal, not a villain per se. He's not fit to be a lasting antagonist, nor especially evil.

Otherwise, not a bad idea.
Voted Strolen
August 3, 2008, 8:45
Interesting. I would think after a little bit news of the robberies and the alternate trail would make it to the town from somewher

How would a drunk bell ringer in a town that is constantly bypassed get all the information about rich merchants coming to warn them? If he knew about them then the entire town would know about them and when they didn't show, surely the town would send people out on the hunt. Even if that worked out I would guess it would work for more than a few times as whatever rich people were taken would probably not accept that and mercenaries or militia would be sent to the area to reclaim their goods. Rumors of the robbery would be all over the area as well as the trail and after a couple everybody would gang up to make the trail safe again, it is hurting all the towns in the area.

The idea can be turned useable, just has some issues that I can't get around.


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