Aptchi the Chef

This story is the background of a new Pathfinder character I came up with, who I may use as an NPC in my Meier setting.

Aptchi hatched about seven years ago.

Aptchi’s mother’s name was Eustela, and she was very unusual for a white dragon. Of course, as any dragon scholar knows, there are ten dragon breeds, and white dragons are the stupidest, weakest, and most pathetic of the bunch. Of course, that’s not saying much, since they’re still dragons who can bite your head off or freeze you into ice with their frost breath. But still, the other dragons look down on them. And white dragons themselves, seizing every opportunity to claim some kind of superiority, look down on those members of their tribe who show any kind of frailty or oddity. So when I say Eustela was an unusual white dragon, I mean that the other white dragons all laughed at her.

Eustela liked living in the warmest parts of Kamto, the frosty kingdom which white dragons rule with an iron fist. Already that was strange for a white dragon. She prefered the meat of unintelligent beasts to that of humans and other intelligent creatures – also odd. And she had been known to trade away part of her hoard, something almost unheard of in white dragons. For even though she got more valuables out of her trades, to part with any part of one’s hoard was considered un-dragonly.

Being so odd, Eustela was belittled and dishonored by her peers. She had no intention of changing her ways to  fit in, but she desperately sought any way to show the other dragons that she really was great. Her chance came when she caught a small group of human interlopers in her domain one day, and captured them all. As I mentioned, though they are stupid and weak by dragon standards, mature white dragons can still beat the stuffing out of humans who aren’t prepared, and Eustela wasn’t going to compound her dishonor by letting these intruders get away with their lives. But, lording it over the few creatures she could for this brief moment, she allowed them to beg for their lives.  Continue reading

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Setting: Sorcerers and Apprentices

Here’s a new setting of mine! Modern fantasy, influenced by Harry Potter, and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (the Disney movie), along with other works I’ve surely forgotten. Hopefully the following speech, given by a prominent sorcerer to his potential apprentice, will explain my idea.

There are seven billion human beings on this planet. And of those, maybe only about 200 are sorcerers.

We sorcerers, wizards, mages, witches, whatever you want to call us — we’ve always been around. The only reason you haven’t seen us is because we don’t want you to see us. And it’s not like we stand out. We don’t dress funny, carry wands, wear pointed hats or anything like that. Our magic, our ability to manipulate the arcane forces that normal people can’t sense, comes from within us. It comes from the Skill. With Skill, we can unleash fireballs, summon monsters, twist minds, transform flesh, or bend reality in any one of a million other ways. All it takes is study, training, dedication, creativity, and yes, Skill. Continue reading

Secrets of the Crowd

If I do another D&D or Pathfinder campaign in the world of Meier, it will almost certainly take place in Silverstream, and involve the vast criminal underground known as the Crowd. Almost none of this would by known by the characters, but it’s interesting enough to share here. (For more information about the Meier setting, click here.)

The Queendom of Lasant’s cities are considered some of the safest places in the world of Meier. The law is fair and strictly enforced, not just by the town guard, but by the elite Knight-Captains, a noble order sworn to a constant war against crime. They are beloved by the people, and considered competent, vigilant, and fair. While any city has its slums, the Knight-Captains maintain general order better than any other crime-fighting organization in the world.

Of course, along with an organized crime-fighting force must come organized crime. Silverstream, one of Lasant’s oldest and greatest cities, is home to what is perhaps the most secretive and dangerous of all criminal syndicates north of the Bocan Islands. It calls itself the Crowd.

According to Her Majesty’s government, the Crowd does not exist. There is no such group: any tales of their exploits are fantasies for misbehaving children, and anyone claiming to work in their name is a delusional maniac. All decent people are encouraged not to worry about such nonsense.

Unfortunately, the Queen’s firm insistence on the non-existence of the Crowd is often taken as proof that it really does exist. Rumors about the organization have even taken on legendary proportions, as almost any suspicious incident or behavior can be blamed, absent evidence to the contrary, on the influence of the Crowd at work. The fact that next to nothing is really known about the Crowd only helps circulate the stories.

As for the Crowd itself… it Continue reading

Intermission: When Gigas Met Tiva

The exciting conclusion to Gigas’ Tale will be right back! But first, here is the never-before-seen transcript of the first, secret meeting between Gigas and the good succubus Tiva. Tiva has put a spell over Gigas, kidnapping him and making them both ethereal (able to see the real world, but not interact with it). This is the chat log between me and our campaign’s Game Master.

(9:48:30 PM) GM: So, you went off with a “beautiful woman.”
(9:48:39 PM) Gigas: Aye
(9:49:11 PM) GM: You and she talked for some time. It turns out she’s…
(9:49:19 PM) GM: …well, she doesn’t really hide it. She’s a bit evil.
(9:49:40 PM) GM: But she doesn’t quite strike you as quite as evil as she would be should she be a succubus.
(9:49:52 PM) Gigas: Intriguing.
(9:50:22 PM) GM: She tells you that she’s under the orders of a demon summoner called Perlmutter.
(9:50:31 PM) GM: He’s an ogre mage that hangs in the area.
(9:50:38 PM) GM: He’d really like to wipe this place out.
(9:50:48 PM) Gigas: This place, meaning the forest?
(9:51:14 PM) GM: No, more the general region.
(9:51:32 PM) Gigas: Ok;.
(9:51:55 PM) GM: ‘Cause he’s the evil.
(9:52:13 PM) GM: She was ordered to Continue reading

Meier: The Orient, The Bocans, and Languages

More info about my campaign setting, Meier.

Orient
To both east and west of the continent called Occident is Orient, the other northern continent of the Old World. It is home to six major nations: Songae, Pin-Tu, Kampsha, Kamto, Shraa, and Cipok. Songae is loosely allied with Lasant, Cipok with Gard, and Kampsha and Pin-Tu with Urst. However, these alliances are meaningful mostly in terms of trade. Not since the time of old Gideon has any Occidental power warred with an Oriental power, although they have provided one another with aid on occasion.

Not much is known about these lands in the Occident beyond their names and these alliances. Different languages are spoken in the Orient; there is even a different Common tongue (Kamese, the native language of Kampsha and Kamto). Even less is known about Continue reading

Meier: Campaign Intro

Sailing day came, and you made your way to the dock where the good ship Saint Olaf was moored. Its destination, and yours, was the port of Morgan, on the island called Campierno. While the vessel was being prepared, dock workers were busily unloading another ship, one which had just made the two-month journey in the opposite direction. Two half-orc porters carried heavy chests, the sheen of gold glinting through their half-closed lids. Following them was the owner of that treasure. A human, his skin was tanned and his clothes were strange. He had a purple cloak with silver trim, boots with buckles of platinum, a belt that glowed as if with an inner magical light, a jeweled ring on each finger, two earrings in one ear and three in the other. A pair of swords hung at his sides, and he walked with a bit of a limp.

Spotting you, he beckoned you over. “Hell’s Bells,” he spat out, grinning. “That’s where you’re going, isn’t it? On all the maps it’s written ‘Campierno,’ but we always called it Hell’s Bells. Gods know the temperature’s hot enough down there… My name’s Martus, and here I am, back in the old country after 25, yes, 25 in that pirate-ridden, infernally hot backwater of an island, working my legs off. I mean it!” he said, and to prove the point, he shook his bad leg in the air. It fell off Continue reading

Meier: Occidental Kingdoms

All right. This is still background about Meier, the campaign setting I’m building. The PCs will all be presumed to come from the continent of Occident, which is colonizing and exploring the Bocan Islands. The action will happen in the Bocans, but first I want to describe the four major Occidental powers, the lands from which the PCs and their fellow explorers/colonists/adventurers may come.

N.B. Meier has the same deities as Golarion, the canonical Pathfinder setting. For those unfamiliar, the alignments of deities are listed in parenthesie.

Gard

Of the four great Kingdoms, the kingdom of Gard is the smallest in land area, though not by much. It is located in the southeast of Occident, and has a strong naval tradition due to its nearness to the Oriental kingdoms of Cipok and Shraa. Gard considers itself the historical descendant of the old empire of Gideon, which once prized liberty above all else. So, while Gard is no democracy, there is a general belief that unpopular members of the nobility can be deposed if their subjects grow too unhappy with them, to be replaced with a more popular appointee. This attitude, not shared by the nobles themselves, has led to a lot of peasant uprisings over the years.

Smart landowners have generous and frequent holidays for their workers, complete with cheap entertainment and cheap drink. Some call this pure politics, but it does lead to a unique popular culture of Continue reading