“Old Ori” – Human Local Color. He’s colorful! What color exactly? Depends on the day…
“He likes liquor, is what he means.” -Michael J. Nelson.
HEROES AND ALLIES
Torgo – Construct Sorcerer. Hero of Telhain, Breaf Weapon Twin, Brave Companion.
Torgo was the first soul to suffer from Sylvio Imbrex’s decision to undertake his ill-fated attempt at summoning magic – other than Imbrex himself, who is probably not much enjoying his Infernal Reward. His master/creator’s almost-immediate death left Torgo without purpose and all alone, hiding in a barrel. The party surprised him on their first day in the Tower, and what could have ended tragically instead became an important friendship – perhaps the most important friendship they have made so far.
He was thought to be Imbrex’s Homunculus – a magical assistant bonded irrevocably to the life of their creator – and indeed has some of the same talents and inclinations, like a bite that can put enemies to sleep instantly. But he has not only survived the death of his master, rare among homunculi, but thrived in the party’s company. It was later revealed that he is actually a Construct and has many other secrets still to be discovered. His magic powers are formidable and continue to grow as he matures.
Torgo is closely bonded with all the party members, especially Mart (whose music he loves) and Bonnie (his “breaf weapon twin.”) Dory was instantly charmed by him, and has made it her purpose to treat him as an equal party member. She quickly enlisted him as Bonnie’s co-protector, and styles him her “Brave Companion.” Medio is also fascinated by him as a very special, possibly unique Construct, and always calls him “Torgo the Extraordinary;” Medio’s repair abilities have already been put to good use in helping keep Torgo fit and well.
Leaps-Like-Frog - Grimlock Ranger. Surface explorer, Enemy of the Conclave, and Boss Killa.
A former member of the Grimlock tribe now led by Ug’lok-go, Leaps-Like-Frog was captured by the Conclave after falling victim to their well-named “meat trap” at some point before encountering the party. Forced to labor as a miner, he was set free by their intrusion into the Conclave’s mining facility and – fortified by the legends he had heard of the mighty “Boss Killaz” – requested to join their number after witnessing their defeat of two Clockwork Overseers and a tremendous mining machine called “Big Dig” first-hand. (A battle Laele Mizzryn (q.v.) also played a “key” role in.)
There have been some growing pains, most notably in the areas of customs, clothing, and deportment, but “Frog” (as his companions affectionately call him) has proven curious and adaptable, as well as brave. The party has welcomed him as a full member – and he has proven an able combatant, scoring a hit on the very next Boss they faced (Red Hand) and using his keen senses and strong throwing arm to aid them in their endeavors. He has clashed with Sheriff Drogo Thornburrow (q.v.), who seems to regard him as little better than a feral animal, but then again Drogo doesn’t seem to like anybody very much…
Thong – Human Monk. Disciple of Wholeness, Servant of Irori, Sensei to Doryen Hawkmoon.
A Human from the far-off continent of Tian Xia, Thong (or possibly Wong?) was introduced to the party by their friend Alegwynne Jenyre (q.v.) upon her return from a summons by the Wildwood Lodge. Thong had arrived at the Lodge a short time earlier on a mission of which he refused to speak – he is sworn to a Vow of Silence – but eventually a Druid conversant with the Tien language puzzled out that he was seeking a “tall, strong, golden-haired warrior woman who has lost her memory and seeks enlightenment” somewhere in the area.
Gwyn’s arrival instantly clarified matters, and she brought Thong back to the Devil’s Rest, where he marked Dory with Irori’s symbol - an open blue palm - and, in sign translated by Medio, and text magically translated by Bonnie, revealed his purpose. He has come to heal the spirit of the Eternal Champion resident within our very confused warrior, and to ready her for a conflict with a Champion summoned by the Lord of Hell, which threatens to upset the balance between good and evil on Golarion.
It seems that the two Champions have been linked by a “cosmic accident” caused by Synisio Imbrex’s ill-fated attempt to summon a powerful fiend weeks earlier, and this explains why Dory received a vision of devils arriving through a portal deep within the Tower. The memories of the two Champions have been shattered, and Dory’s must be made whole before the final conflict can begin for there to be any hope of success – or survival!
Alegwynne Jenyre – Half-Elven Druid. Hero of Telhain, and protector of its wild environs.
The townsfolk of Telhain used to call Alegwynne a wicked witch, and their distrust pushed her away to a solitary life with only infrequent and sometimes unpleasant contact with the settlement. She serves the Green Mother and this sometimes puts her at odds with the desires of the farming community, as she advocates fiercely for the wild creatures she protects. Bonnie and the party chose to take her part and become her friend, and she battled and defeated the devils alongside them, saving the community that had rejected her.
This seems to have reawakened a desire to connect in the shy - but quite beautiful - Druid, and upon meeting Dory and hearing her strange tale, the two quickly turned an immediate physical attraction into a passionate love affair. “Gwyn” has continued to help the party with her powers, brewing potions of protection for them and rallying her many friends in the Verduran Forest to help them track down and defeat the Red Hand Gang. She still prefers the stillness of the forest to the chatter of crowds, though, and avoids Sheriff Drogo Thornburrow (q.v.) in particular – they have clashed before and there is no love lost between them.
Alegwynne was summoned to the Lodge shortly before the final clash with the Red Hand Gang, and returned a couple of days later having been granted the title of “Ovate” – official recognition of the work she had already been doing for 10 years. She also brought a Monk from Tian Xia called Thong (q.v.) with her, who had been searching for Dory for purposes of his own…
Laele Mizzryn – Drow Slayer. Former Velvet Blade, now seeking a new path in the light.
The party encountered Laele at her most desperate – imprisoned by the Conclave and being worked to death in a mine. Her Dark Elf brethren had decreed this to be her fate as the consequence of a botched murder plot she was to perpetrate against the Drow Magus Decena X’ryc – already dispatched by the party – which she undertook for love of the Magus’ husband Drav.
Rescued from this grim fate by the party, she assisted them in defeating the Conclave and halting their mining operations. Afterward, with no future left among her people, Laele decided to pursue a future on the surface on her own, despite offers from Dory and Bonnie to aid and guide her. This proved to be an unwise choice on the part of the Slayer, as she was taken captive mere hours later by the Red Hand Gang, and had to fend off an attempt at possession by their fiendish allies.
Rescued once again by the party, Laele told them of a strange vision that foretold their reunion and helped her resist the fiendish plot. Paired with the regretful (if temporary) departure of Johnny Law, these events served to convince the prickly Drow that she has a role to play in the party’s adventures, and she formally joined the team. The party’s opinions on this are mixed: neither LA nor Medio trust the Velvet Blade, and tolerate her only grudgingly; Coleman, Mart, and Bonnie all support and believe in her quest for a second chance; Dory feels a kinship with the Dark Elf despite their very different attitudes, and calls her “sister.” (Laele recently returned the honor in front of everyone, thrilling her!)
The party’s next trip to the Tower reunited Laele with Dr. Fizzkettle (q.v.), with whom she had been imprisoned by the Conclave. She feels closely bonded with the intrepid Wizard, and has accompanied him to Absalom as protector (and more) during his efforts to rally “The Institute” against Ulistil’s Conclave and their horrible plans. She has promised to return when she can, with news and possibly aid.
Before she left, she did the party one last favor, explaining that the Drow cult called Kulgenn Elendar Yath (KEY) – a fanatical but clandestine group led by one Cerice Jakk, arch-enemy of Coleman – has their own plans for the Tower, which involve taking it to the Abyss to confront their Demon Goddess Nocticula as part of a power struggle that could reshape Drow society, and return them to a position of power and influence.
Doctor Fizzkettle - Gnome Wizard. Investigator for FIFPRO, enemy of the Conclave, magical crafter.
Dr. Fizzkettle originally entered the story as the object of Mart Eden-Prairie’s personal quest. The Federated Institutes for the Funding of Peaceful Research Organizations (FIFPRO, or “The Institute” for short) had dispatched Mart - and possibly other investigators - to seek the Doctor out, as he had disappeared somewhere in the Telhain area and had not been heard from in some time. Mart was given precious little beyond a physical description to go on, but set about the task diligently, and soon picked up clues that his target was somewhere within the Devil’s Bargain, a.k.a. the Aether Tower.
As they searched the Tower level by level, the party eventually found Dr. Fizzkettle imprisoned by the Constructs of the Conclave - tortured, interrogated, and forced to craft magic items for them in aid of their evil plots. Originally held alongside Laele Mizzryn (q.v.), who developed strong feelings for him during their shared captivity, he tried to escape but was easily recaptured and returned to work, until the party managed to penetrate deeply enough into Conclave territory to free him.
Once released, he shared the details of his investigation into Conclave activities and their connection with Samark and Mesli Moonkantor, the evil nogitsune Wizards who had kidnapped Bonnie’s friend Wanderlea and Hana, granddaughter of Razahl Envesior (q.v.), among many other children with magical aptitudes. Dr. Fizzkettle played a minor role in their schemes before realizing their ultimate goal - corruption and murder - and swore to put a stop to them, which prompted his mission to the Tower and subsequent capture.
Mere hours after his escape, a letter to Mart arrived in Telhain making disturbing claims that Fizzkettle had actually been back in Absalom for weeks, prompting him and the party to wonder whether an imposter is there working against his aims. He has departed for Absalom in the company of Laele (who confessed her affection, and wore down his initial resistance) to investigate further, but has promised to rally The Institute to oppose the Conclave’s plots, and to send Laele back with further information when the time seems right.
Warden Garris Naefaren – Elven Fighter. Silver Warden of Verduran, Devil Hunter.
Warden Garris introduced himself to the party in a manner that did not undermine the stereotype of the Elves as slightly smug know-it-alls whose pants are excessively fancy in any way, waiting for them at the entrance to the Tower (where they had just escaped a very trying encounter) and implying they were out of their depth. His pants are silver and his cloak is white and silver and Coleman in particular found him a little insufferable. Luckily, Bonnie played nice, Coleman sobered up, and Garris’s specialty is hunting devils, so they came to an accord.
Garris and some other Wardens took care of a secondary problem while the Heroes of Telhain were winning their battle in the square, busting up an altar dedicated to the Cult of Rozaceal that had attracted new recruits from the area and was proving a hot spot for animal sacrifice, with worse in the offing if it was not stopped. The party did not actually see this happen, but Alegwynne (q.v.) later confirmed that the altar had been destroyed and the cultists who did not fall in the battle at Telhain were scattered.
The Silver Wardens turned up again a week later, as the party tracked down and defeated three more devils (and watched two others escape) in their attack on the Red Hand Gang’s hideout. They arrived in time to rescue one of Garris’s men, Warden Samalion, from captivity (where fellow prisoner Laele Mizzryn (q.v.) was pressed into service keeping him barely alive) after he and two comrades were ambushed by the gang. Closer ties between the Silver Wardens and the Heroes of Telhain seem sure to follow.
MERCHANTS AND TOWNSFOLK
Branim Bloodforge – Dwarven Innkeeper. Owner/Operator of the Devil’s Rest Inn in Telhain.
Branim is a cheerful sort, full of hospitality and enthusiastic about his ale – deservedly so, as it is excellent. The unofficial mayor of Telhain, he has contacts all over town and is happy to guide young adventurers looking for advice about the locals, and the local gossip. He’s also Bonnie and Dory’s boss of sorts, as both of them help out at his Inn (for tips and for free, respectively) when not out battling evil.
As the party has grown in size, Branim has offered them the use of a rental house that shares a lot with the Rest, which they have furnished and moved into. He threw in a free week’s rent since they agreed to fix its leaky roof – a task Medio easily accomplished with his remarkable Clockwork arm.
Most recently, Branim has had to make use of his Alchemist skills to defend his property, hurling firebombs at an invading force of Automatons that were trying to abscond with Dr. Fizzkettle (q.v.) He has also sold the party many a handy potion of cure light wounds to aid in their quest.
Raegar Bloodforge – Dwarven Blacksmith. Owner and Master Craftsman, Bloodforge Armory.
Raegar is Branim’s cousin and the two of them are quite friendly. Raegar is newly arrived in Telhain and is currently operating out of a temporary, wagon-based forge on the Rest’s lot. Temporary or not, he’s well-stocked and prepared to buy or sell at a fair price. Branim gave him one month to find a permanent site; two weeks in, he’s still looking. Something underground would be his preference.
Raegar also happened to be nearby when his cousin’s Inn was invaded by Automatons, and sprang into action bearing a mean-looking axe and looking to bust some heads. He was a little too late to get it swinging, but his boys took care of the cleanup, and soon those metal bodies will be repurposed into more top-quality arms and armor.
Snorri – Dwarven Blacksmith. Apprentice at the Bloodforge Armory.
Snorri is kin to a family friend of the Bloodforges. His father sent him to Raegar to learn smithing – to clear a debt, the way he tells it - but Snorri likes to read. Romances, mostly. He’s a good kid and a hard worker, if a bit prone to sneak away to get a few more pages turned on the sly. Dory likes him.
Snorri has shown some other interests as well, largely of a more cerebral type than his fellow blacksmiths at the forge. He has a good handle on probability and statistics, which he uses to talk people out of gambling unwisely, and create strategies for a new ball game that has captured the imaginations of the menfolk of Telhain. He’s having some trouble getting his contributions recognized, but keeps at it diligently.
Razahl Envesior – Kitsune Wizard. Proprietor, Razahl’s Shop of Mystical Wonders.
Until very recently, nobody in Telhain knew that the jocular, story-telling owner of the town’s magic shop wasn’t an elderly Human at all, but a shape-shifting Kitsune. It is still a secret to everybody but the party, and they have promised to keep it that way.
Razahl and Bonnie share another secret – a secret enemy that has caused each of them to search Golarion looking for their missing loved ones. He believes the Aether Tower they are exploring is connected to his problem, and has promised and provided much material aid to the party. He has even thrown them a discount or two!
As the party has discovered more about their situation, Razahl has also been pressed into service as a Sage, with his wide travels and many reference texts serving to illuminate the mysteries they encounter. This service he provides for free, since the party’s interests often coincide with his own – and also because he likes to talk.
Tadeo Envesior – Kitsune Wizard. Apprentice, assistant, and grandson to Razahl.
Handsome Tadeo is an equally handsome humanoid fox, and made an early connection with Bonnie. He is dedicated to the search for his cousin Hana, taken by the same fiends who stole away with Bonnie’s best friend Wanderlea, and he convinced his grandfather to bring the party into their circle of trust in the hopes she might be found. Like his grandfather, he finds pretty ladies distracting and is often kept busy to keep his eyes from wandering. Sometimes it works.
Brother Lito – Human Priest. Leader of Telhain’s faith community, an Arodenite.
Brother Lito is of stout heart and stout physique both, but as the power of his position derives solely from the trust of his congregation, rather than the magic and other gifts of Clerics and Warpriests, he quickly found himself overmatched when caught in the middle of a plot hatched by devils. He very nearly got his neck stretched before the Heroes of Telhain saved the day.
But there are many kinds of heroes, and Brother Lito serves his community ably with the gifts he does have, compassion foremost among them. He has recently asked LA to serve as the party’s liaison to the religious and civil authorities of Telhain, and is a reliable and trustworthy view into their thinking. Grateful for the party’s assistance, Lito has been a strong voice in their cause since they saved his life, and his good opinion added to their own direct acts of compassion and care has made the villagers quite well-disposed to them.
Lito’s congregation had a big moment recently, when a golden holy symbol of Aroden that the party recovered from the Tower was revealed as an artifact that had actually been in Aroden’s presence, and was then re-dedicated to the Temple in a special ceremony that the whole party attended.
Sheriff Drogo Thornburrow – Halfling Constable. Local LEO for the Varima Barony. Cop eyes.
Sheriff Thornburrow has a big beat and a lot to handle with very few resources. Accordingly, he sometimes saves time by coming to quick judgements, and his introduction to the party was mixed at best. On the one hand, the Heroes of Telhain had just saved the town from devils, thugs, and cultists. On the other hand, he didn’t know them and thought they looked kinda raggedy, and didn’t care if they knew it. On the gripping hand, he paid the party a 500 gp bounty for delivering a criminal without them even having to ask. It’s a complicated relationship.
The Sheriff’s next interaction with the party came nearly a week later, when he put them on the trail of the Red Hand Gang, after the criminals they had captured in the Battle of Telhain broke out of prison with (further) devilish assistance. The party mostly succeeded in ridding the Verduran Forest of the gang – one criminal escaped – and earned some more grudging respect in his eyes, as well as another large bounty payment.
He has also clashed with Alegwynne (q .v.), who seems to find him inflexible and unwilling to see all sides of a question. As an ally he seems to be on the up-and-up, though not without his flaws.