This will be the first post of an ongoing series where I will introduce a new Creative D&D Character—based almost exclusively upon 5th edition rules. These characters will be complex and perhaps even challenging to incorporate into a campaign without some forethought and careful planning.
The idea behind this ongoing series is to showcase just how versatile characters can be when your primary (or only) resource is the current Player’s Handbook. We’ve all fallen victim of going down a rabbit-hole to seek out some esoteric tome to create a truly unique and compelling character but I contend that given just a singular resource and, perhaps, a brief web search you can create a vast array of truly unique characters. That is not say that I think we should shun supplemental material. I happen to enjoy going down the rabbit-hole. But to some, it can be overwhelming. I encourage you to use these characters as you’d like whether they be as NPCs or PCs. Please let us know if you do work them into your campaigns. We’d love to hear from you.
So, without further ado—you were waiting for that weren’t you?—I give you Lindal Goodbarrel.“Before joining the Order of the Long Death I ran a moderately successful criminal enterprise back home in Amn. True, it may not be “natural” for a Halfling to engage in receiving stolen goods but few, if any, in Amn could get these ill-gotten gains into the legitimate market like I could. That was my specialty and no one was better at it than me and my associate, Ashhearth.
I was born to parents of no consequence. But they did well enough and I had a typical upbringing filled with carefree frivolity. There was no world-shattering moment in my past that drove me to crime. I’m sure some brainy philosopher somewhere wants to try to pin my career choice on some unconscious part of my mind such as the consequences of my parents not loving me enough or not loving me in the right ways or some other such nonsense. But no. My desires were conscious. My desires were simple. Gold. The more the better.
I was not the most athletic child, even for a Halfling, and my bruised self-confidence led me to extreme introversion. Nor was I “the most astute lad” in Amn and the elders always said I would never be successful. Well, I proved them all wrong. With the luck typical of my Halfling race, my enterprise proved to be far more lucrative than I’d ever planned on it being. For a time, I didn’t want for much. I even managed to give extra to my parents from time to time. Even though my mother would ask questions about my business they tended towards the superficial and my father was conspicuously mum on the details of the money’s source. The down side of it all was that wealth attracts attention.
Once the Red Wizards of Thay caught on to my business they thought they were entitled to a cut. I know everyone in Faerûn thinks that Halflings are all happy-go-lucky and weak and easily manipulated but the gods broke the mold when they made this Halfling. The truth is, I belong to no one. I stood to gain nothing from the greedy Wizards sticking their noses in my business so I setup a brilliant double-cross involving my associate, Ashhearth. However, someone alerted the Wizards to my plan—it was flawless and should have gone off without a hitch. But Ashhearth wound up dead.
When my associate was killed by the Red Wizards my carefully crafted enterprise started to unravel. My mother always said that even the smallest thread, if carefully plucked, could unravel the best-crafted sweater. Ashhearth was no small thread in my tapestry. She was a major seam. But fortunately for me she had a brilliant contingency plan and I was able to cash out without suspicion while a local seamstress took the blame for all my black market dealings. Ask me if I care.
What I do care about is that never again will I lose such a valuable ally nor a promising business opportunity as what I had in Amn. I spent some time studying with the Long Death during a long stay in the Silver Marshes and quickly learned that their monastic traditions would serve me well while I scouted out a new location to build another black market empire.
For the moment, I live a mostly transient lifestyle. Perhaps somewhere metropolitan can provide me enough anonymity to strengthen my operations such that I can be powerful enough to thumb my nose at idle threats by the time anyone suspects me and possibly even have the backing of some local muscle and political influence. After all…I have more than just business skills to offer. And my fees are reasonable.”
Stats & Background Information
Race: Stout Halfling
Alignment: Lawful Evil
Weight: 40 lbs.
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Brown
Skin Color: Pale
Strength: 8 (-1)
Dexterity: 15 (+2)
Constitution: 16 (+3)
Intelligence: 6 (-2)
Wisdom: 9 (-1)
Charisma: 6 (-2)
Criminal Specialty: Fence
Personality Trait: The best way to get me to do something is to tell me I can’t do it.
Ideal: Freedom. Chains are meant to be broken, as are those who would forge them. (Chaotic)
Bond: Someone I loved died because of a mistake I made. That will never happen again.
Flaw: An innocent person is in prison for a crime that I committed. I’m okay with that.
So there you have it. The first PC/NPC in the Creative D&D Characters series. If you have questions or comments you can leave them below or on our Facebook page. Happy gaming!
|Helpful DMs Guild Resources|
The Scarlet Brotherhood
5E Halfling Monks (Free Download)