Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Innate Magic People Part 10

This week's artist is Marcus Erdt, a freelancer from Germany. He's got a lot of different styles, but I kept to the realistic fantasy stuff for this article.
In Ahneria, nearly everyone can cast a little bit of magic, but some people can cast full-on spells. I decided it would be fun to detail out a set of NPCs based on the first level spells. As I said in the previous article, these are people who are somewhat common, but might have gained notoriety or fame based on their abilities.

These NPCs form an ongoing set of articlesThis is the tenth in this series, and covers the seventh level spells. At this point, the power of these NPCs can shape the cities and countries around them. One of these people might be the reason for an entire campaign's worth of intrigue, combat, or exploration.

Holmar Oddmarsson
Spell: Wind Walk (PHB pg. 288)
Holmar Oddmarsson lives near Mt. Artinir, in a city where people routinely bring sacrifices to the God upon the mountain. However, thanks to his power to become wind, he has learned that the “God” at the top of the mountain is no god at all, but a cannibalistic impostor. After Holmar began rescuing the sacrifices, a rumor began that a wind spirit was fighting the mountain god over power.

The people in the city of Artinir wait with baited breath to discover who will win this war, the star circled god, or the spritely wind spirit. Many root for the wind spirit, in hopes they will no longer have to make sacrifices to their God’s unquenchable hunger.

Avita Volle
Spell: Word of Recall (PHB pg. 289)
Whenever someone finds themselves in a dangerous situation in Toleno, sometimes a being known as the Angel saves them from danger by whisking them away to safety, then vanishing. No trace is ever left by her, but more than one of her rescuees have fallen instantly in love. Many a wishful lover has placed a reward on those who can find this creature, but so far none have been able to.

The angel, whose full name is Avita Volle, enjoys helping people in need. She was rescued by someone from a landslide as a child, and vowed to help people when she grew up. When she came of age, she discovered a small shrine in the mountains where she could use magic to transport herself and others to safety. She practiced for years, until finally she mastered her true power. With her natural gifts and a powerful scrying mirror, she acts as the guardian for those in Toleno.

Yejalo Naringa
Spell: Crown of Stars (XGtE pg. 152)
The god at the top of Mt. Artinir guards and protects the people at the bottom of the mountain, but for a price. Yelaj sends his shining stars streaking down to protect the villages from the barbarians who would destroy their lifestyle. In return, the people in the city of Artinir bring a human sacrifice to the top of the mountain once a month, and god Yejal is satisfied with this.

But Yejal is no true god. His real name is Yejalo Naringa, a powerful magic user who accidentally developed a taste for human flesh. He appears like a God due to the stars that orbit his head. Recently, a troublesome Wind Spirit has appeared, and Yejalo has been struggling to fight the odd creature.

She can be yuor devil... or your angle
Roslile Dargrace
Spell: Conjure Celestial (PHB pg. 225)
Roslile Dargrace is a kindhearted elderly Halfling, who has always been friends with various celestials throughout her life. They seemed drawn to her, and once they discovered what a kind-hearted person she was, they stuck around to become her allies. Whenever trouble ensued throughout her life, Roslile had her cherubic friends to protect her and anyone nearby.

After retiring, Roslile and the celestials spent time relaxing and traveling to new and adventurous places. But while she was absent from her home city of Pegai, a swarm of demons invaded and began to kill her people. Now, Roslile and her friends must hurry back for one last fight.

Azella Birzina
Spell: Delayed Blast Fireball (PHB pg. 230)
The Raquin Army has a secret weapon, and General Roko Blaus thinks that the attack on the Citosa Empire is the perfect time to unleash her. Skilled with explosions, Azella Birzina captures the power of fire, then lets it loose on opposing combatants resulting in catastrophic death. The council rarely needs to call upon her, but this time they did so, and Azella is ready to explode.

Azella enjoys her job, setting up her explosions before the fighting, then watching the light show from her safe perch next to the general. Sometimes when the fighting is not on, she has projects on the side that the council and General Roko do not, nor would not sanction. Sometimes a Jewel crafter’s door burns to the ground, and she gets a cut of the profits, or the neighboring royals are threatened. She’s just in it for the fire and money.

Kaeso Axius Salvius
Spell: Divine Word (PHB pg. 234)
The newly christened Divine Emperor Kaeso Axius Salvius rules the Kaeson Empire with a platinum finger. Everything in the Empire is subject to his opinions and whims, and not one person is safe from his decisions, and his words. If any dare disobey, with a word he can erase them from existence. That is the power of the divine emperor.

However, there is a faction that is trying to rebel against the Emperor and his perfect empire. This rebel faction is trying to negate Divine Emperor Kaeso’s commands, with little success. They need stronger assistance to counteract Kaeso, and maybe some help against the Kaeson Armies as well.

Titus Grimm
Spell: Etherealness (PHB pg. 238)
Something is rotten in the land of Siigo, and it’s not the fish. The King Saamir has passed away, and rumors have been going around that King Saamir’s brother, Imraan caused the death. A rumor that the “King’s ghost” has perpetuated.

Princess Kareema was witness to the appearance of her father’s ghost, and is now obsessed with the idea that she must avenge her father. But little does she suspect that her newest friend and confidant, Titus Grimm, is actually a con man who specializes in appearing ghostly and breaking apart royalty. He is working for the Kareem resistance, and plans to continue to create rumors surrounding the King’s death until the royal family tears each other apart.

Moriah Cham
Spell: Finger of Death (PHB pg. 241)
The continent of Jakala covers nearly half the globe, and Moriah Cham plans on taking all of it for herself with the power of her undead army. The council of Jakala’s countries have united to try and stop this undead force, but some of the leaders could not make it. They have already fallen and are serving in Moriah’s army.

Moriah is just looking to create a playground for herself and the undead, all while taking whatever niceties from the conquered countries she wants. Peace, riches, and quiet moaning from her undead friends is all she needs in life, and no council of leaders or elders can get in her way, and they know it.

"Zombie commander" goes great on a resume
Ignatius Von Brandt
Spell: Fire Storm (PHB pg. 242)
Everyone in the entire country of Maotsa knows that Kelibahar City is the most corrupt in the world. From the underworld crime rings to the bribed politicians, so many officials and people in power are dirty. That is, until some of them were found as a pile of cinders. It was most apparent throughout the underworld first. Since the patrols and guards weren’t straight, those that didn’t follow the law got cooked as well.

The civilians in Kelibahar City are pleased, but skeptical. Rumors of a vengeful fire spirit have been spreading, as more corruption is burned out of the city. No one knows the firebug is Ignatius Von Brandt, the son of the most crooked council member of all, Boritus Von Brandt. Ignatius is hoping his fire spree is enough to scare his father back onto the straight and narrow, but if it is not, he will need someone else to light that fire.

Corixa Vallus
Spell: Forcecage (PHB pg. 243)
Corixa Vallus is pleased that her Emperor enjoys blood sport. The arena is her favorite place to bear witness to the feats of strength of the Emperor’s warriors against her precious pets. Her task is to travel to far reaching parts of the world and capture new and exciting creatures for the emperor to witness in the arena.

Corixa was a little disappointed at first when the emperor decided to introduce his warriors to the arena to kill her pets, but she had an even better idea. What if the emperor used her pets to dispose of unwanted diplomats, or rivals that are unfit for the throne? With a wicked gleam in her brown eyes, she formulated a plan to convince the emperor to buy into her ingenious idea.

Wade Dwiggins
Spell: Mirage Arcane (PHB pg. 260)
On the outskirts of Tarien, in no man’s land, lies an abandoned, haunted looking place. The terrain changes from forested underbrush to scraggly, dead plants and dying vegetation as far as the eye can see. The solid path of packed dirt deteriorates into an untraversable mess of stones and rubble. The soil is dry, and nothing seems to be able to grow there.

Wade Dwiggins, a conscientious old hermit, has every intention on keeping people off his land. Just a few miles past his fa├žade, he lives on a pristine beach off the coast of the Shishtari Ocean. The water from the ocean also washes up treasures from some of the nearby Oceanic peoples tribes, and sell for a nice chunk of gold. He’s content to live his life in peace, but adventurers keep showing up trying to “brave the wilderness”.

Torment Promise
Spell: Mordenkainen's Magnificent Mansion (PHB pg. 261)
The large continent of Silapur has survived many a natural disaster, but never before has it met a disaster like Torment Promise. A tiefling bent on raising havoc everywhere he goes, Torment has gathered followers to stay with him in his magical mansion. Wherever the mansion is seen, so are Torment’s minions. They attack from doors that appear out of nowhere, and slip away just as easily.

When Torment and his followers, the Promised, appear in Athdu, the capital city, chaos breaks loose. People are turned into animals and rounded up for slaughter, support beams for larger buildings are decomposed or flop into gelatinous forms, and the screaming is heard for miles around the countryside. Queen Orivari is at a loss as how to combat these strange cultish criminals.

Ayanna Viviana Shiochi Ruedas
Spell: Mordenkainen's Sword (PHB pg. 262)
Ayanna Viviana Shiochi Ruedas may have a mouthful of a name, but once someone fights her, they will speak every part with reverence, if they are still alive after facing her magical sword. Ayanna is the world renown champion fighter from Hamaito, known also as “The Slab” or simply, “The Undefeated.” This smallish woman wields a fabled giant invisible sword named Oblivion, and that’s where she sends her foes.

The Emperor of Hamaito’s head guard, Orlondo, is Ayanna’s father. Once he realized his daughter’s amazing potential, he began training for her at an aggressive pace. Ayanna however, does not like the emperor. She only fights because it is what she is good at. She wishes for a truly strong warrior to fight against, to really give her a challenge. 

Samander Umarzai
Spell: Plane Shift (PHB pg. 266)
Most smugglers in Vadros use boats to get black market goods around the island nation, but Samander Umarzai uses magic. His finds are out of this plane of existence, literally. He discovered that he has the ability to transport himself and others to outer planes, and has found wealthy tourists that will pay for such journeys. While he’s there, he palms an item or five to resell back home.

From his most recent trip, he picked up a gear from Mechanus, the plane of lawfulness. Unfortunately for Samander, this was a more important gear than he realized. Anu, one of the gods that lives on Mechanus, has started sending clockwork messengers to try and retrieve it, before Anu comes to fetch the gear himself. Unfortunately, the gear has been sold and Samander needs help tracking it down.

Rock on, dude
Mala Das
Spell: Power Word Pain (XGtE pg.163)
Mala Das was a strange and mean child. She killed insects before moving on to birds and squirrels, and enjoyed tormenting others with the power that she holds over them. This only got worse as she grew older and more powerful. Her schooling ended with her being taught separately from other children, while she made even her teachers and tutors cry on occasion.

Now that she is an adult, she thinks taking over the country of Ozos would be fun. Then she can torture whomever she wants, and get whatever she wants. Her first step was to cripple their current ruler, much adored King Viraj. The next is to get control of the massive army that Ozos has. What good fun.

Spell: Prismatic Spray (PHB pg. 267)
There is a rumor going around the continent of Iucres that one of the rainbow bird spirits has descended from the heavens to combat demons and other evil spirits. The tropical region has had quite the outbreak of demons recently, with the locals suspecting the extreme summer heat to be attractive to the heat loving fiends. The rainbow spirit swoops in from the sky to fight the demons, then duty done, soars off to find more.

This “rainbow spirit” is none other than Kal, a particularly colorful parrot Aarakocra who has the talent to use his different feathers to summon different powers. The feathers are valued by these aarakocra, as they are said to bring good luck to those who find one. Kal leaves a few feathers that he can spare after each fight, to help prevent attacks in the future.

Saffine Falzarin
Spell: Project Image (PHB pg. 270)
Empress Saffine Falzarin has ruled the expansive country of Arith for over 50 years, and still hasn’t lost her touch. This could be because she is a benevolent person, but it also helps that the half-elf can seemingly be in two places at once. The Empress is a very busy woman, and can just get more accomplished that way. Ambassador Mohavji’s meeting runs late? She can still be on time for her address to her people.

This annoys Jevon Falzarin, Empress Saffine’s nephew and “heir” who is laughed at. Being the older human heir to a half-elf is like buying an axe that has already started splitting. This has been the biggest struggle for her nephew, who has been eyeing the throne for about a decade. Jevon wants to have his aunt removed from power so he can be the ruler, but he will need help to determine the real Empress from the duplicate.

Threat level: Fire Tornado
Mauno Ranta
Spell: Regenerate (PHB pg. 271)
Known as the “Natural Surgeon” Mauno Ranta is a slight, finicky sort of man whose ability to restore limbs is well known throughout the continent of Yegai. He travels around the continent, helping all who need or want their limbs restored. His services have become something of legend, and those who seek him out bring vast tribute and riches in hopes of gaining a moment of his time.

This impressive natural ability has been recognized by some ne'er do well organizations, and the boss of one, Trista “The spike” Massimo. She has had a spike as a right leg for 4 years now, but after hearing about Mauno coming to visit her city of Vribin she wants a chat with the good doctor to become her personal surgeon. Permanently.

Kaisu Lehto
Spell: Resurrection (PHB pg. 272)
Now in her later years, Kaisu Lehto is still better with dead people than alive. She is able to bring back those who are dead, but has strict requirements for using her power. Not that her powers can’t be used - she only wants to bring back those who want to and are worthy. She had put up an ad to find some assistants to help her parse through the many requests sh received, and the roles filled much quicker than she anticipated.

The worthy orders began flooding in, and Kaisu got to work. But something was amiss. Out of her three assistants, two were working together and fabricating information to bring the not-so-great dead back to life. Carn, her third assistant, has discovered their game, and might need some help in removing them from Kaisu’s service.

Don't mess with a guy who can wear armor that weighs more than you do
Briar Abyss
Spell: Reverse Gravity (PHB pg. 272)
General Briar Abyss is well known as a shifter, but also for his immense power on the battlefield. Anyone fighting the army of Zadoris watches cautiously to see if they are fighting General Abyss, for if they are, they will lose their soldiers at the same rate it takes an army to fly up into the sky, and then return to the ground.

For years, the might of Zadoris stood unmatched. But, recently, Zadoris was surprise-attacked by drow from underground. Attacking from their tunnels, the dark elves had a distinct advantage against the swirling effects of gravity: ceilings. The General was thrown for a bit, but believes he might have a strategy to defend against this new adversary.

Jesgwen Kriamtes
Spell: Sequester (PHB pg. 274)
A prophecy was foretold at the birth of copper Dragonborn Koyassa Kriamtes, that she will save the world from utter destruction. The seer, Jesgwen Kriamtes, and elderly copper Dragonborn, said she is only to be awakened 20 years before the end of the world. After the prophecy was given, Jesgwen of the Kriamtes clan sealed the youngling away, and left stories of the prophecy in stone, and in as many languages as they could manage.

Centuries later, the savior is still locked in time, waiting for the 20 years before the world is to end. The clan has expanded in the years to make sure the savior is safe, sharing the lore with each new generation. Nobody knows when the spell will end, but when it does, the end of the world will surely be nigh.

Dusk Cresswell
Spell: Simulacrum (PHB pg. 276)
Dusk Cresswell was a surgeon, until he was kicked out of the hospital he was working in for unorthodox practices. He dissected creatures, still living, to better see how they worked. This was to make his magical models of the monsters more accurate, more realistic, and better suited to further study. When he began working on humans, the hospital chancellor found out and blacklisted him. This seemed like the end of his medical career, until he found the underworld doesn’t have such stringent restrictions. That’s when he began his true experiments.

His new benefactor, an unknown woman, whom he only knows to as The Lady, has payed him handsomely for his work. She requires a small army of dangerous monsters, bred and spliced between other creatures. His most famous early creations were the owlbears, but they were too wild and uncontrollable, and he let them go into the wilderness. His newest creations are much more obedient, which is just to The Lady’s tastes.

Lorena Weston
Spell: Symbol (PHB pg. 280)
The people in the city of Ursall have been smelling worse odors than usual coming from the sewers for the last few weeks. The problem is, anyone who travels down into the sewers to check it out never returns to the surface. This leaves the city council with a conundrum: lose more city guards to the sewers, or endure the rank odors that grow worse every day.

The smell doesn’t bother Doctor Lorena Weston though. She has been conducting glyph experiments in the sewers, and building an underground maze to protect her unethical experiments. The sewers of Ursall are the perfect place for testing, and the smell is from some of her test subjects she fried, rotted, and tortured.

PETA doesn't approve of these activities
Jak Vux
Spell: Teleport (PHB pg. 281)
Jak Vux is a changeling who specializes in transportation, and enjoys it thoroughly. He is a teleporter for hire for those who can afford it, and his prices are steep. This is because after he transports someone, he can use his changeling abilities to lead customers around as a member of the new society. Especially in areas that are hostile to outsiders, Jak’s connections deter probing questions against those who would like to live there.

Since he can afford to live (and transport himself) anywhere, Jak takes full advantage of his abilities, and visits more places that most people could imagine in his lifetime. It has taken him some time to learn how to control his abilities, and he doesn’t like to talk about the mishaps he’s run into during his life. But when he gets a particularly infuriating client, some “accidents” might happen.

Zamam Cinnu
Spell: Temple of the Gods (XGtE pg. 167)
Around the extensive continent of Sateron, rumors have started to circulate about a magical temple that appears to those who needs it for healing or spiritual needs. Those who were wounded from random animal attacks or from bandit raids would see a shimmering building appear before them, filled with caring healers and a kindly old caretaker. However, trouble has been brewing in Sateron. The Empress, Kadrie Frostbrand, has had her eye on neighboring countries on the western coast. As the armies of the Empress are preparing to march, the healers in the Temple are worried they will not have enough healers to go around.

The temple is moved around by Zamam Cinnu, a man who cannot abide by warring times. He lost his closest family members in wars, and wants to prevent as much death and loss as possible. He has been debating visiting the Empress to ask her to stop this foolish and unnecessary war.

Thiandra Bronwon
Spell: Whirlwind (XGtE pg. 171)
The Omune countryside has either had a terrible string of bad luck, or did something to offend the Gods, because the weather has been steadily getting worse over the last month. Killer storms that drop tornadoes have been rampaging en masse, ripping the trees from their roots and flinging anything they can get their wispy winds on. The weather is more severe than usual in Omune, and the people are getting very nervous. This makes the Omunei Council nervous as well, especially when Sovri Hazedown, a newer member revealed that the storms are magical in origin.

Sovri is afraid that the storms are being caused by her childhood friend and aasimar, Thiandra Bronwon, recently returned from the sea. Thiandra seemed to always have the winds at ehr back,  and the coincidence of them returning as the storms arrived seems suspicious to Sovri. She needs to see if Thiandra can stop the storms, or return to sea to let the people of Omune live in peace. 

That's all for this week. Next time, we'll finally get into the big, world-changing spells: The 8th-level spells.

Also, check out Marcus Erdt. Great art!
Thanks for reading!

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