School holidays are here, and my son is keen to play a D&D campaign. Since the lock down, he and his friends have been running a campaign on zoom, but he was keen to play in person with extended family. Now, I haven’t played since I was in high school, which was so long ago it was version 1 of AD&D. So I started researching the available races and classes, and after making some choices there, I started digging a bit deeper online to create some back story. And it will come as no surprise, that the internet is awash with Dungeon & Dragons lore.
A Rock Gnome
My character is a female rock gnome. Reading the descriptions I was actually leaning towards the forest gnome, as they seemed to have the innate abilities that were closer to my idea of the character. But it turns out that forest gnomes are very rare, very private and very secretive. So playing one of those in an adventuring party, didn’t seem very realistic. **cough cough**
So a rock gnome it is, from the town of Hardbuckler, at the base of the Trielta Hills in The Western Heartlands (formerly Hartlands, for the deer originally native to the area).
Hardbuckler is a town on the Dusk Road, frequented by traders that arrive both from inland, and the sea, via Baldur’s Gate. It is known far and wide for secure private storage for any type of goods. They are also suppliers of elaborate locks, and boxes, crates and chests of all sizes, as well as seam sealing wax, sold by the roll.
A Wood Carver
“My father”, is of the Narkle clan, and is a craftsman of small personal sized boxes. From ornate carved designs, for ceremonial clan purposes, to small unassuming boxes, with secret compartments to hold hidden valuables. From an early age I practiced in his workshop; carving to bring wood to life, and interlocking pieces of wood to create self contained locks and puzzle boxes.
As well as the joy that comes from honing a craft, I have also enjoyed the exploration of the world outside my town. The woods, rivers and hills, and the “people” that live there, have been quite the source of entertainment. My curiosity has also been fed by the many travelers that come to Hardbuckler, and the stories they have shared. But none so much as the Monk.
My father made a set of boxes for a monastery, and the monk who came to collect them, stayed with our family during the winter. Curious as always, I asked about his life, and he told about his studies, the Way of the Open Hand, and he showed me the skills he had acquired. It was almost time for me to get my education, so I implored my parents, and the monk, that I should spend time at his monastery. They agreed.
My passions are 3 fold.
- A desire to see much of this world, and what it contains. The wonder of the unknown seems inexhaustible.
- A desire to know myself, and what my being is capable of. There are still depths to be plumbed.
- A desire to work with wood. To transform it into something more than itself.
These passions overlap, and sometimes seem to be a single thing.
Gnomes have many names, and they collect more of them throughout their lives. I was given Faexi Carssa Alumyn Narkle on my name day, and Krisys was added by a visiting Aunt not too long after. My mother calls me Fae, which I find endearing coming from her, but irksome coming from most others. On the way to the monastery, I saw fit to grab another. I have referred to myself as Banlin ever since.