View Full Version : [4e] - What makes an Elf? (Character Background, building)

2008-06-27, 08:45 AM
Elves are often portrayed as joyous lovers of nature, carefree spirits inhabiting the wild and living life to the fullest. All too often are the prejudices thrown around that Elves are delicate and weaker than the stronger, earth-bound races of the world.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

For the last 100 years I have been held captive by the vile Thay. Taken from my bed when I was but an adolescent, the wizards of Thay branded me with their tattoos and pierced my ears to show my value as property... as nothing. I lost all sense of who I was, who I was to become and what things had been lain before me to forge my future. I was subject to ritual scarification, brutal beatings and cruel torture. Why? Sometimes it was boredom. Sometimes it was entertainment. Sometimes it was part of some arcane ritual in which the Wizards of Thay were not sure of the results. I no longer retain the natural beauty of the elves and if it were not for the shape of my ears, my race would be mostly indistinguishable. They took that from me by force. I was sold and bought as property. Given scraps of food that even the dogs would not eat. Even the children were cruel in their insults, pointing and snickering at my broken nose or the cuts in my flesh. I no longer had any sense of freedom, for nearly a century I was no better than a mule. It wasn't until my brother did something miraculous that I was able to know what freedom truly is. His blades flashing through the night air, followed by a small strike force from Algarond, he cut his way to the manor house where I was chained. His appearance atop the stairs, longswords dripping the blood of thay down the stone staircase, renewed my strength. With all the fury I could muster I pulled the chains from the stone walls in which they were attached and cried out to the night, swearing vengeance upon those who wronged me.

So tell me now, as you look into my eyes, what is it you see there? Is it joy? Is it a soft glow of a dainty elf? Look upon my scarred countenance and tell me that I am weaker than anyone.

I now travel alongside my brother, as adventuring companions. We are wondering the land in search of evil, in search of the sort of villainy that bereft me of life. But mostly, we seek the strength to one day topple the towers at the heart of Thay and scorch the land until the last vestige of life in the entire decadant society is but a memory.


Beris Venlear is much larger than an average elf, muscles constrained by polished scale armor. His face is mangled and disfigured; his nose looks to have been broken several times and his ears have been mutilated in a viscious way. He has 6 iron hoops spanning his left ear and a large scar traveling from the right side of his forehead down to the left side of his face, splitting his appearance down a fine line. At his hip is a large flail and he carries a heavy shield in his left hand, a simple adventurer's pack sitting upon his back. If you were ever to see him without his armor on, you would see the thayan runes etched over his torso from his waist and up to his collar bones. The runes cover nearly every inch on his chest and back. They don't have any particular meaning, just looks as though its various notes and thoughts in no sense of order or cohesion.

Beris tends to be very serious in nature, taking life at face value at all times. He is fiercely loyal to those he considers friends and allies, even moreso when it comes to his brother. He values his brother's life over his very own and is often seen within arms reach of the ranger. Though, at the center of his gruff exterior, he is geniuinely good and seeks to right wrongs wherever they may be.


Elf Fighter
S 16, C 15, D 15, I 11, Wis 14, Ch 8

AC: 19 (Scale + Hvy Shield)
Fort: 15 (Str +2 class)
Ref: 14 (Dex + Shield)
Will: 12 (Wis)

HP: 35 (Base + Con + Toughness)
Bloodied: 17
Surge: 8
Surge/Day: 11

Attack: Flail +6 (+1 class, +3 str, +2 prof), 1d10+3 damage

At Will: Sure Strike, Tide of Iron
Encounter: Passing Strike
Daily: Villain's Menace

Trained Skills: Athletics, Endurance, Heal

2008-06-27, 04:46 PM
So tell me now, as you look into my eyes, what is it you see there? Is it joy? Is it a soft glow of a dainty elf? Look upon my scarred countenance and tell me that I am weaker than anyone.

"Fangtooth see the weak underbelly of an elfling incapable of eating his own liver to survive. Fangtooth know this because Fangtooth once went on long walk where the only food around for miles was Fangtooth." - Fangtooth Knifedagger.


2008-06-28, 04:33 PM
I can always trust the wise insight of Fangtooth... it will never lead me astray!

2008-06-29, 09:07 AM
"You whine too much spindleshanks. Life is hard; be harder."
- Ghrum Alpenschist, Dwarven fighter

edit: trimmed for trollery.

OK Sam, what am I looking at that we haven't seen before?

It's not like subversion of the happy-go-lucky, forest-dwelling joyous elves is anything new.

D&D has the Drow. WoW the Blood Elves. Iron Kingdoms has the Iosan arch-racists. Tad Williams did the Sidhe as egocentric undying cat people. GW has subverted the 'happy elf' trope to their great financial benefit no less than *7* times (High, Wood & Dark Elves; Craftworld, Exodite, Harlequin & Dark Eldar) IIRC.

Other than looking a bit like Danni Filth (6 ear-rings? scars on every flat surface?) what is this character intended to illustrate please?