The Asmodeus Plot
The most heroicly heroic hero.
“You ’eard about that loud mouthed idiot who passed ere through town last week?” Snarled Pel over his mostly foam filled flagon. He took another pull of the foul smelling grog and glared sideways across the bar at the tavern keep, dull grey eyes peeking out beneath his snowy white brow. “They says he was headed for a feastival jus past the moutains east of ‘ere. I was down in the mine fer the last two weeks, been too many vermin creepin up lately; now I ’ear bout this stranger, stirring up trouble… tellin ya it’s a bad omen..”
“Gah, what do you know, old fool.” Growled Web, a worker the local mill. Web was build like a horse and had to turn his entire chest and broad shoulders to frown down at Pel. “Everything is a bad Omen to you, bah. It was just some arrogant ass passing through. The only reason anyone is even noticin’ is he wouldn’t shut up! Hear’n the way he’d tell it, he’s fought every war from ‘ere to Meridith! We’re just lucky our daughters got sense to leave him be. ‘Course it’s not like it was hard to tell he was jus some would be bard with shitty stories. Anyone could tell he didn’ know his ass from his head; hell, if you came up from your hole more often you’d know that, and stop being such a brooding old bastard.”
The tavern keep was busy, moving through his usual routine of cleaning, stoking the stove, ensuring the ale barrel was full and stirring the stew. It was nearly evening and most of the town would be stopping by for a drink and to trade gossip after the long day. The town was fairly small and set off the main roads, so a loud stranger.. what was his name? Rathbar? Rapkarr? Redgar? Yeah, that was it, Redgar… if he never heard that name again it would be too soon. He only stayed one night, but the commotion he caused with his horse shit claims, trying to bed every daughter in town… Shit, a fairly boring tinkerer traveling through, selling their wares and news would be talked about for months; of course it made sense this moron would be of topic.
The tavern keep sighed and shook his head; at least he’s gone. Of course, now there is this new fellow… he looked up from placing another log in the stove to glace at the Elder in the corner. He came in bout an hour ago, asked for a room and dinner. Didn’t seem like many people noticed his arrivel, least no one else mentioned him yet. No hair off his knuckles, the man’s money was good; he’d paid an entire silver, A SILVER! for one night and a hot meal, up front no less! That would cover costs for the next few months! Still, what was a Druid from the grove up north doing here? Oh well, for a Silver he could be working with the Raven Queen for all it mattered. If he kept to himself, that’s his buisness, Elder buisness. He chanced another glace to the corner and noticed the man had gotten up and walked towards Pel and Web, probably going to tell them to shut up about women’s gossip. Serves ’em right.
“Excuse me, whom are you refeering to?” Pel spun around on his stool, starteled, and prepared to let whoever it was know you don’t sneak up on— Pel’s breath caught short as he noticed the man’s clothes.
“Oh pard’n, I didn’t realize an Elder from the grove up North was in town.” Pel said, bowing his cricked back as far as his sore muscles would allow, damn sleeping on the ground wasn’t as easy as it used to be.. “We were just discussn some up to no good bastar—, beg your pardn, errrm, vegerbond, who past through a week or so back; stirrin up trouble. Nothin’ you need to worry bout, yourself. I ‘ear he was all talk, and he never stopped you see, all bullshi—, eerrrm, all tall tales you see. A man of your, er, stature, would have nothin’ to fear from the like o him! Also, as we was discussin, he left town after being chased by every man with a daughter fer two miles round, least the way I heard it, errrm, sir, Elder sir.” What WAS an Elder doing here anyway? Elders rarely passed through town, Pel had only ever seen two in his long life. They were Druids from up North, and each had strange, powerful talents, knacks. One saved 5 men when a mine collapsed in on them. They only came by while on buisness, not many problems ever stirred them up these days, but one just happened to be in town at the right time. After murmuring a quiet chant, all the men appeard to bleed up from below the ground! Tree roots were intertwined with their limbs and into their bodies, reaching down their throats and pulling out dirt and rocks. It was a miricle. It was terrifying. But Pel was no fool, you didn’t live to his age without being cautious.
“We ‘pologize, errm, your Elderness, we were just leavin you see, won’t bother you none anymore. I didn’ know we was distrubin your visit.” Pel and Web seemed to agree for a change and both stood up to leave.
“It’s fine, it’s fine” the Elder said waving his hand, dismissing the apologies. “Look, this man who passed through.. last week or so you said? Tall? Loud? Boisterious? Full of shit?”
“Elder!” Pel exclaimed, a man of this stature, he’d never heard a blasphemy pass anyone more important than the village representative’s lips, the Elder’s casual swears caught him off guard. Pel looked at Web, his face seemed pale, but he wasn’t shaking.. least Pel could claim it was the arthritis.
“Bah, look, I need to catch up to that worthless idiot. He’s supposed to be … well, he isn’t allowed to leave, but as you have seen, he did. I am suppose to drag his annoying ass back with me to the grove..”
“I knew it!” Pel reeled on Web. “I told you, damnit! Bad. Omen. Bet he’s causing trouble.. stalkin poor good folk. You should of kept followin’ the bastar—, errm, criminal out of town and strung him up!”
“What? No.. look, he’s just an idiot. He’s no more a criminal than you. He’s just a worthless druid from the gro-”
“He’s a druid!?” Web looked more pale than before. Even the tavern keep was listening now, the forgotten stew slightly boiling over, adding a vicious sizzle to the tense atmosphere.
“Well, yea, I mean.. sort of. Look he isn’t a danger.. well I mean.. normally. He’s too blatently dumb to bed any sane woman anyway… Wait, look, where did he go? He’s an idiot, but he’s a fast idiot and this is taking longer than I was hoping to track his damned ass down. The only crap he’s ever been good at seems to be avoiding me! I swear I’m going to put roots on his damned feet so he has to replant every step…” The Elder looked at the three men, their jaws were only slightly off the floor, but clearly unhinged from their skulls. “You said he headed for a festival? What day does it start? How far?”
“If I’m rememberin’ right, errm, sir, Elderness, it’s tomorrow? Bout 6 days out from here. More or less dependin on the roads’ shape. We had rains 3 days ago, somtimes knocks rocks loose. We haven’ had the time to go check it.” said Web, regaining some composure. “Err, if I may ask, should we be worried, maybe send word to the towns round us to capture him if they see em?”
“HA, he’s a fuck up by driud standards, but I doubt they could catch him actually. Besides, this is Elder buisness.” At that he gave Pel and Web the best glare he could manage. Druid buissness, especially Elder buisness, was no buisness of theirs. “If anyone follows me from the grove, tell them Elder Treeve, thats me, is just a few days behind Gar, I know where he is and I’ll be back shortly. They need not worry, I got this.”
“Yes sir, Elder, errrm, sir..”
“Elder Treeve,” Treeve corrected.
“Errm, yes, Elder Treeve, err, sir, err.. Elderness. I’ll make sure they get your message if they come round ’ere. You can count on us sir, Elder. Your kind always done good by us.. I mean you, the Elders, sir.”
Sigh… god damn this was tiresome, funny, but tiresome. Small villages were one of Treeve’s favorite places to visit. They were always in harmony with the nature around them, bending with the worlds will instead of trying to force down every tree and weed for miles out. But the people, gah. Larger towns, where exotic visitors became commonplace, were much more progressive and the people easier to talk to. If nothing else though, these men were honest to a fault and could be trusted with this task. It beat waiting, and letting Gar… Did they call him Redgar? Letting Gar get further away while he took precious days waiting around just to tell the grove it will take a few more weeks for the trip out. Beuacracy at it’s finest. Sure, give me a time sensitive task(even if Gar WAS his responsibility to begin with) and then require me to report every other day on my location and status just because I didn’t want to become an Agent.. I mean come ON, they know what I’m doing, cut me some damn slack here.
“Well, now that I have a lead, best I hurry on my way. I thank you for your assistance.” Treeve pulled out a gold coin, and looked at Pel and Web.. their eyes were enormous and terrified. Ah shit, this was probably more money than any one person had ever seen here. Treeve put the gold coin away and pulled out three silver. He handed one to each of the men, “Inform the Elders only if they pass by, otherwise, you saw….”
“Errm, nothing sir. We haven’t had anyone come by for weeks, Elder, sir.” Said Pel.
HA! Treeve might be able to like this old guy, if he wasn’t such a whiney gossip. Least he was quick and understood what was left unsaid. “Glad we understand each other, farewell. The grove appreciates the good will, as always. Farewell.” With that, Treeve strode out the tavern and headed for the edge of town.
It was 6 days travel, more if the road was out.. Treeve thought as he ran. Well here’s hoping my luck holds! Amazing enough I picked up on his trail this fast; guess it just shows how great a tracker I am, HA! Ao if the festival starts tomorrow though, huh.. hmmm.. Awww shit, I should of asked how many days the festival continues. Welp, can’t go back now, I already “disappeared” and said farewell. Not very mysterious if I sulk back in and ask such an obvious question like that. Festivals are usually a week, right? GAH, how the hell should I know.. I grew up in the grove afterall. We only ever had small celebrations… Sure, yeah, a week sounds about right though. As long as he stays there for the whole thing, and that arrogant bastard will— who am I kidding? He’ll probably think the whole fucking thing is being held in his honor anyway!
Sigh— how the hell did I get this asshole as my student anyway. More importantly, what WAS that idiot Gar thinking? Running off from the grove! Damn selfish prick. And Redgar? Probably some bullshit name he thought up; Gar did that sometimes, thought of a “Hero” name. Pfft, him a hero.
Gar had been born in a tiny village near the grove. It was more isolated than most, and the people were fairly close with the druids. Every few years, the Elders would visit and see if anyone could communicate with nature. Being raised in the wilderness, they tended to be more adept and many of the Grove’s current Elders were from there.
Gar was the only child in the village at the time, and spent days being baby sat by an old man while his dad tracked game in the woods (actually, yeah, this wasn’t Treeve’s fault, this was all that old man’s fault! filling Gar’s head will nonesense). He had been a farmer until a unusually bad storm washed out the top soil of his land. He himself had been injured when the water had collapsed his house around him; lost a leg from that. Out here, no way he’d of survived on his own and just like that he became dependant on the village to live. Eventually, he’d been reduced to women’s work watching Gar. Gar’s mother was lost years earlier, Treeve had been told. But that damn old man, every day he’d tell Gar stories of being a so called hero. “Oh, my leg? Bitten off by an ogre while I resuced triplit princess sisters. The king was so happy he married them all to me, but I am a man of the world. I came out here for adventure! Remember to be a hero, you don’t need love, just an adventure and a woman in bed. Many and often for that last part!” What the fuck definition of a hero is that anyway?
When Treeve came to town four years ago to examine the villagers, he had noticed Gar had a knack for understanding nature. He bought Gar from his family and returned him to the Grove. GEEZ what a mistake. Gar never took an interest in a damn thing he’s been shown. Last year, he started spreading tales of how he will become the worlds most amazing Hero. HA! He can’t even stay focoused enough to become a full druid, let alone face the world as a figurehead. Nope, Gar would be lucky if he ever even achieves enough ability to be let out of the Grove, let alone become a Grove agent. The Grove reserved 2 titles for full druids: Elders and Agents. Elders were tied (mostly) to the Grove, and tended the sacred forest where they lived. Agents were allowed to leave and set forth into the world to help maintain balance. They had freedom, but the Grove could call them in an emergency to defend any great need.
Usually the druids did not take sides in war, politics or even assist in tragedy. They only cared for the balance of nature, but when a great shift occurred, they would occasionally employ the agents to a group or kingdom, to help restore the worlds flow.
When Gar failed BOTH tests to determine his apititude for either Elder or Agent work, he declared he was an Agent and would become the Hero the world wanted. Bah. Moron.
Redgar’s real name is Gar Son of Lear Son of Reave.
One day, Gar decided the only thing holding him back from legend was a more heroic name! What makes a heroic name? It must be a color! Derg the Black, a great fighter of his time. Sprig the Blue, a mighty wizard of the arcane. Obviously, if he placed the color first, the names power would be even greater!
Thus Redgar Leaves… wait… seriously.. that’s your.. ugh… /facepalm.
Character Traits and Personality:
Redgar is very confident.. for no reason. He believes if it needs done, he can probably do it, or did it. Well.. he will anyway. I mean, after all, words are power, if you say you’ve done something amazing, thats half the work, right? All that’s left is to actually DO it… right?
But, while talk IS important, being a hero requires much more effort than that! Otherwise even people who are NOT Redgar could be them. Redgar did recieve training from the Elders druids of the Grove, especially from his crude master, Treeve. Although, most lessons ended with Treeve yelling. Obviously, Redgar had surpassed all the other, lesser, druids and it was time for Redgar to break out and introduce himself to the world.
Princesses aren’t going to bed themselves, after all.
While things like money, food, toilet paper (wtf is that?) are important in life (you know, to LIVE, and stuff), Redgar is more concerned with his image. Doing this, will he appear to be a hero or will he complete the work of a Druid? If no, then PFFT.. who fucking cares about that old man stuck in the Gel cube? He IS blind after all; there is no way he can tell people of the majestic manliness that is Redgar in action! Hmm.. However, Redgar is understanding! He may be blind, but he can repeat all my amazing stories of great feats… so I should (very audibly) save his ass.
Redgar is Neutral, self interested, and (while it may not always appear that way) fairly driven for his goals.
He IS very trusting, but through his strong bond with nature and the creatures that dwell within, he has gained great insight into feelings and intent of others. Is that suspicious man to be trusted; or is he harboring ill intent and misdirection (I’m looking at you, Wilhand)?
This is, of course, only as long as he is willing to listen to said instinct. For example, his amazing ability to ignore a woman’s refusal of service to his staff with her bag of holding is the stuff of legend. Then again… a wise man once said “Five ‘nos’ and a ‘yes’ still means ‘yes’”.
He is arrogant to a fault. Obviously, anything anyone can do, I can do better. However, Redgar does understand that maybe sometimes it’s better if he ALLOWS others to do some tasks FOR him (so humble).
Friends and Companions:
Redgar insists he argued with his pet hawk over a kill, and it was decided the only solution would be a staring contest; winner takes the food and the other as a servant. Redgar allegedly won, and now has his lifelong friend/slave who can assist him in some attacks or other nuances.
Hawk, however, was unavailable for comment to confirm or deny this tale.
Treeve’s personality is.. mostly proper.. until he relaxes. Then he slips into crude speech and a “don’t give a fuck” attitude. He thought Redgars aptitude for nature as a child would enhance his status as a great Elder.. but well.. it’s Redgar. Drives a man to drink!
Treeve is a human.. sort of. He was born a druid among druids, and while he is not fully inhuman, he is also not fully human. He has some plant in there. His strengths are his ability to feel the life around him through the plants. But, if taken from this nature ridden environment (plants, nature) his senses become dull and sluggish.
He is so-so in overall strength (muscle and fighting technique), and has slightly sub par everything else. Essentially, a physical attack while in nature against Treeve would be a death wish as an attacker. When outside of nature environments or when confronted with a non direct, non physical attack, almost anyone could easily overtake this guy.
Redgar abandoned his Grove and managed to avoid the Elders seeking him (juuuuuust missed em). Redgar was denied being inducted fully as a druid (Redgar can’t believe it EITHER!), and was told by his instructor/keeper/master/owner he was more or less a waste of time that he can never recover from, and that exorbitant amounts of alcohol would be required to even attempt to salvage… Redgar kinda tuned the rest out.
Redgar’s goal is to be the hero he dreamed he is. To be WHO he is. And to prove it to Treeve. After all, if Treeve admits it, he will not only have the respect of the Elders, but he can probably get promoted to druid, or even king of the druids, and be given tons of women!
Redgar hears news of the Grove, that many are dying and the order may fall. The Agents are missing and the Elders are in a bad way. After returning, Treeve is dying. A corruption has enslaved the sacred grove and has locked the Eldest (Its a title, not actual age, head druid) in a deep sleepless nightmare. The Agents are not responding. The rest of the Elders are like Treeve. Whats the corruptions source? Can Treeve be saved? Can Redgar, the worlds worst druid, find and stop the corruption to restore the balance and in doing so become the hero he desires?
I want Treeve to die as a part of Redgar’s character development, but it’s important to not die forever. He is reborn as a tree-ish spirit person thing. It’s due to his nature, he is a Wilden (I think thats the race for this? maybe?) When he dies, they manage to salavege enough essence, he grows into a zombie plant self. Can’t walk around, but talks shit to Redgar, and continues his training/studies. Gives advice. Tries to drink.
Where did the corruption, and more importantly, it’s operatives and handlers, come from? WHERE THE HELL ARE THE AGENTS ALREADY!? ITS BEEN LIKE, 10 LEVEL, STAHP HIDING! Who is the master mind of the taint on the land. Will Treeve’s zombie tree ever find love?