Campaign of the Month: April 2012
Elven Reformed Assassin, Follower of Horus
Complete character sheet is Here.
Alric is a 6’8" tall ridiculously skinny elf. He is only about 180lbs which puts him at around 50lbs underweight. He used this to his advantage as an assassin, slipping in places where no-one could imagine an adult squeezing. Any time he was on a job, he would disguise himself to appear more built, but to any observant person his hands and face would give it away. When off the job, and his life since loosing his memory of being an assassin, he wears clothing that is fitted to his narrow frame.
He has dirty blond hair that he usually keeps about shoulder length and hazel eyes. His fingers are long and slender. Overall he gives the impression more of being a scholar than anything so active as an assassin, again something he used to his benefit in the past.
He usually keeps his collapsible pistol crossbow in a holster on his right wrist, and wears his battle axe at his waist. The battle axe is meant as a deterrent, for even if people think him an easy mark, the open wearing of a naked blade tend to discourage all but the most hardened of pickpockets.
He’s never far from a deck of cards, and is always ready for a game. His ready smile often disarms his opponents even before he begins. He loves to cheat at cards, but will never take your money if he succeeds. He’s not so fond of other games of chance, even if he is adept at palming, because it requires more preparation and people seem to take losses a lot harder. With cards there is an element of skill involved that people can assume you were just better.
It’s a rare moment when his good looks or smile can’t get him out of a mess that his cheating has gotten him into.
He prefers Jackets to cloaks.
Picture from Neopets.
“Getting away with murder is not as hard as you’d think,” Alric said with a smile as he moved around the room, careful to touch nothing other than the floor.
“Knowing your victim is important, of course, but more important is knowing your victims allies. I’m sure you can understand why?”
The gagged man just looked at him with wide scared eyes.
“Oh, don’t look at me with that accusation. You and I both know that you shouldn’t have slept with the Earl’s wife. He is a jealous man, and he employs a number of psychics. He was going to find out eventually, and when he did…well you already knew was happened to the previous Earl, so it should come as no shock to you that he chose this course of action.” Alric smiled at the man tied to the chair.
The man, in spite of himself, began to relax a bit and sort of shrugged his shoulders.
“See, even you agree that this was the only course of action. I know, you don’t want to die yet, but who does?” Alric continued to set the stage as he talked. Hangings were the easiest, but the noble didn’t own any rope, and bringing your own rope to an assassination was a great way to leave something behind for a psychic to track you by. No, without some rope owned by the target, Alric had to move on to the next suicide on his list, and that was drinking poison.
“Look, you seem a reasonable fellow, how about I take the gag off while I continue to set the scene? You won’t scream when I do?”
The man nodded at him, and Alric removed the gag.
“What good would screaming do? You obviously think of everything, and will no doubt have gotten my guards to go elsewhere.”
“My dear sir, of course I don’t think of everything. Beyond being philosophically improbable, it is psychologically impossible. Every man is subject to his own conceits. There are so many things that each of us take for granted, that it is impossible for us to think of everything.
“Take you for instance. You assumed that your private chambers were sacrosanct. As such, you were sure that you could be here by yourself and let your guards go…‘hassle someone else’ I believe your words were.”
“I never meant…”
“We never do. This just goes to support my original hypothesis. Each of us focuses on our own worries and fears, and they blind us to the truth of the world around us.”
“And what is the truth of the world around us?”
“Why, that none of us really matters.”
“I’ll have you know…”
“That you are an important man, with important friends? Of course, you are important to your friends, and they to you, but beyond that? And even if we assume that your subjects find you to be important, which is an assumption not in evidence, it doesn’t go much further than that. Beyond your lands, I’m sure that most people never even think about you. They might think about your lands, or a relative who lives here, but they never even give you the time of day. They’re even less likely to recognize you on the street.”
The man’s expression sobered, so Alric gave him a blinding smile. “Where are my manners. No man should go to death with these thoughts. We have all eternity after this life to be serious.”
“If you really want me relaxed, why not pour me a drink.”
“I see you’ve resigned yourself to death then?”
“As much as I can. I’m still scared, but it all seems so inevitable.”
Alric’s smile became genuine.
“At least we have that out of the way. I’ll go ahead and untie you now. In fact, there’s a bottle of wine open on the table. Go ahead and help yourself while I finish up a few last things here. Oh, and I did lock the windows and doors, so don’t think about running. I should be most put out if you try to run.”
Alric didn’t even look at the noble as he proceeded to put the short ropes into his bag. The chair was next, as he’d brought a collapsing one with him. He wasn’t taking any chances with this one. While the story about the Earl’s wife was true, the Earl had no reason to suspect his wife of any wrongdoing, yet.
So, the earl would be using all of his psychic advisers to try and determine the cause of this death. Apparently Alric was better at espionage than he often gave himself credit for.
The sound of the glass clattering to the ground caused him to smile again.
“Sorry to deceive you, but in this case, it really had to look like a suicide. I’m sure you understand.” Alric slipped out through the window, leaving the rapidly cooling body behind him.
It was simply another job that he completed, and another bag of gold awaited him with his broker.
Alric felt confident in his ability to take out the next target. He had no guards, was relatively isolated, as the other people in his neighborhood avoided him, and in general he was, well, a perfect target.
It should have been a clue that not everything would go according to plan.
This was supposed to be a quick in and out, kill the man with his own knife and leave. Unfortunately it wasn’t that easy.
He pulled back to plunge the knife into the apparently sleeping body, and realized he couldn’t move. Fear gripped him for the first time in a long time.
There was a look of concentration on the man’s face for a moment, and then he smiled.
“Alric Treadstone. My, haven’t you had an illustrious career. Not many people can say that they got away with killing a prince of an empire. And from the fact that you’re standing here, I have to assume that you got away with it.”
The shock must have shown on Alric’s face because the man simply smiled at him. “Oh, don’t look at me like that. No one is perfect, as you love to say. This is your one mistake. I know, you were supposed to kill me, but you should have questioned your broker’s willingness to pay you 100,000 for such a ‘simple’ job.”
“I’ll admit, I was impatient.”
“Yes, you were. I’d like to believe that you’d learn from your mistake, but I’m not giving you that opportunity.”
The fear really sunk home to Alric at this point. He knew, like so many of his victims, that he was about to die.
“Really, Alric, do you think I would kill an artist such as yourself? You are a master when it comes to death. I don’t think anyone has ever actually realized that so many murders are your work. Not only that but the Duke you killed last month? Genius. My information sources tell me that no one suspects anything other than suicide. The problem is, Alric, that you know differently. I’ve already dealt with your broker, which was a simple matter of killing him. Anyone could replace that man, and I’m sure someone already has.
“You on the other hand pose a much more difficult conundrum.”
“What do you mean?”
“I can’t have you knowing the Duke was murdered as it could cause me problems in the future, and I can’t bring myself to kill you. I mean, the way that you simply revel in the chase. The sheer joy you take in helping your targets to remove themselves from the picture. You are a true master, who I’m sure one day would have been capable of killing even me.
“And there is the problem. One day, I might need another killing done, one that has your perfection of style. So, if I don’t want to have to find another assassin with your particular talents, I have to make sure that you can neither remember this, nor die in the meantime.”
“So you’re letting me go?”
“In a manner of speaking.”
The rain felt good on his face. He smiled up into the sky, just enjoying the feel of the cleansing drops. He’d stopped in the middle of the road to simply luxuriate in the feel of the water.
“Are you alright?” a woman’s voice asked from beside him.
He stopped looking at the sky long enough to catch a glimpse of the woman and then went back to contemplating. “I believe so,” he said.
The woman in white robes took him by the arm and lead him to a temple nearby.
“Samuel, I’ve found another one.”
“That’s the fifth this month, Rebecca. Does he have a note on him?”
The woman searched his pockets, and came out with a piece of parchment, just like the others. She began to read aloud for Samuel’s benefit, “This man’s name is Alric Treadstone. His memory of self is gone, but you’ll find that he has many useful talents. Take good care of him.”
“What is this place?” Alric asked the pair.
‘The temple of Apis. Just be glad that we found you, and not someone else in the district. The wiped don’t fare well here.’
“Thank you for your concern. Who am I?”
Rebecca took a deep breath and glanced at Samuel for support.
“That is a bit of a story, and has more to do with people like you, than you yourself.”
It was another rainy day, this one a couple of years after the first one. Alric heard a sound behind him and turned to find Rebecca standing there. Rebecca’s smile was enough to warm Alric to the core. She wasn’t an elf, but that didn’t really matter to him. He’d thought for the longest time that she and Samuel…but that was long resolved.
He went to her and kissed her deeply. She pulled away after a few moments.
“What’s wrong?” Alric asked, concerned.
“I’ve had a message from the goddess.”
Alric was a little worried at this, but kept his questions in check. The look on Rebecca’s face was more worrisome. She…feared him. Even as she smiled, she feared him.
“The goddess told me who you used to be.”
“That doesn’t matter. That person died a couple of years ago. I’m just this person you see before you now.”
“He’s still there, even if he’s locked away. The person who made you this way is looking for you because he needs an assassin with your special talents.”
“What are you saying. That I’m an assassin? There’s no…”
“It’s true. You are an assassin. Apis herself told me, Alric.”
“But, I don’t remember killing anyone. That’s not me.”
“And the goddess knows this. She told me that you need to leave tonight.”
“Rebecca, please, stay with me. I’m not this assassin that Apis told you about. I will leave as requested, but not because I am running from anyone. I am running to something. Our future. I will return to you some day, I promise that…at least as long as you still want me to?”
Rebecca hesitated for only a moment and then fell into his arms. She held onto him tightly, and he encircled her with his arms.
“Stay with me,” she said quietly.
“Please. I know that you’ve been trying to keep me pure, and I appreciate that. If it is so important then we can have Samuel marry us. I need this.”
“Are you sure, Rebecca. Knowing who I was?”
“I only know you as you are, and I would be blessed beyond measure to be your wife.”
“Then let’s get to it,” Alric said with a smile. Her answering smile still had a shadow of her fear, but her love overshadowed it.
Rebecca’s sleeping form was wrapped in the blankets of the bed they’d shared. He knew that she expected him to be gone when she woke, but it was hard for him to tear himself away.
He kissed her lightly on the cheek, and turned to walk into the night. As he walked away the tears that she’d been holding in finally broke free.
“Go with him, Apis. Protect him from harm and bring him home to me in one piece,” she whispered. Apis had told her that if she chose to do this, she would become pregnant with Alric’s child. That was a small price in her mind to actually be with the man she loved more than life itself.