View Full Version : [Portrait] Mīm the Clan-less

2006-01-02, 09:30 PM
Mīm the Clan-Less

From a distance, you see a dwarf watching you carefully. As you approach, you notice his ragged clothes and unkempt beard. Suddenly he screams, raises his hands and calls for a powerful storm that nearly knocks you off your feet. He draws a spear and attacks, affected by the harsh winds as little as the eagle that falls from the sky in a coordinated attack. With an effort, you and your group fight him back, when suddenly the dwarf drops to his feet. He changes into a wolf, eyes gleaming with intelligence, and attacks even more furiously. The last sound you hear is a long-stretched howling and the last sight you see is the full moon rising between the leafless trees...

http://img263.imageshack.us/img263/499/mimfinalbig2rd.jpg (http://imageshack.us)
Art © by Taylor Eshelman

Dwarven Werewolf, Druid 6
True Neutral Medium Humanoid (Dwarf, Shapechanger)
Initiative: +5/+7/+7*
Senses: Darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent, Listen +4, Spot +8
Languages: Common, Elven
Armor Class: 17/17/20* (+1/+3/+3 Dex, +2/+4/+4 natural, +1/+0/+0 bracers, +3/+0/+3 shield) touch 11/13/13, flat-footed 16/14/17
Hit Points: 67 (8 HD)
Resistances: +2 saves vs. poison and magic, +4 saves vs. fey abilities
DR: 5/silver (wolf or hybrid form only)
Saves: Fort +12/+13/+13*, Ref +7/+8/+8*, Will +12/+11/+11*
Speed: 20 ft. / 50 ft. / 20 ft.*
Attacks (dwarf form): Spear +7 melee or ranged (1d6+1)
Attacks (wolf form): Bite +7 melee (1d6+3)
Attacks (hybrid form): 2 claws +7 melee (1d4+2) and bite +2 melee (1d6+1)
Base Attack: +5
Grapple: +6/+7/+7*
Attack Options: Trip (+2 modifier, wolf form only)
Combat Gear: scroll of cure critical wounds, wand of cure light wounds, potion of bear’s endurance
Spells Prepared: 5/4/4/3, save DC 14+lv: 2nd-barkskin, bull’s strength, gust of wind, heat metal; 3rd-call lightning, greater magic fang, wind wall
Abilities: Str 12/14/14*, Dex 12/16/16*, Con 16/20/20*, Int 8, Wis 19, Cha 12
Special Qualities: Alternate form, wolf empathy, nature sense, wild empathy (+9), woodland stride, trackless step, resist nature’s lure, wild shape (2/day), dwarf traits
Feats: Improved Initiative, Iron WillB, Natural Spell, Run, TrackB
Skills: Control Shape +15, Handle Animal +8**, Survival +17***, wild empathy +9**
Possessions: mwk shortspear, +1 hv wdn shield, bracers of armour +1, cloak of resistance +1, scroll of cure critical wounds, wand of cure light wounds, potion of bear’s endurance, holly and mistletoe, cold weather outfit (total value of possessions: 5600 gp)
*-the numbers indicate dwarf form, wolf form and hybrid form respectively
**-wolf empathy: +4 bonus when used with wolves or dire wolves
***-in wolf or hybrid form, Mīm gets a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent

Eagle Animal Companion
Small Magical Beast
Initiative: +3
Senses: Low-light vision
Armor Class: 19 (+1 size, +3 Dex, +5 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 16
Hit Points: 27 (5 HD)
Resistances: +4 Will vs. enchantments (morale)
Saves: Fort +5, Ref +7, Will +3
Speed: 10 ft. (2 squares), fly 80 ft. (average)
Melee: 2 talons +7 melee (1d4+1) and bite +2 melee (1d4)
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/0
Abilities: Str 12, Dex 17, Con 12, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6
Special Qualities: link, share spells, evasion, devotion
Feats: Flyby Attack, Weapon Finesse
Skills: Listen +2, Spot +18

The elves of the woods are roused: a group of dwarven mercenaries has entered their forest at night without permission and are slashing their way through the bushes. A group of druids is sent to intercept them. An ambush. Arrows. Blades. A scream. None are left alive.

The next morning, a group of elves is working nearby to fix the damage done by the dwarves. Suddenly they hear the sound of a baby weeping. Investigating, they find a dwarven baby some hundred yards from the site of the battle. As they bring the infant to the rest of their group, all wonder what to do. How could this baby have survived the short but fierce battle, and can they hold it responsible for the crimes of its parents? In the end, the druids decide it must be an omen, signifying that Balance is served by raising this child as the first dwarven druid in recorded history. They never again speak of its mysterious survival, or however it got to that place a hundred yards away. They name the infant Niben (“Small one”, referring to his size in a non-diminutive way).

Niben is raised in the Way of the Druids. The elves emphasize the importance of natural balance, and the concept of the Balance as something that should be actively pursued. To preserve the Balance, the druids teach, one should always side with the underdog, and advance the cause of nature in general. Good, evil, law and chaos are all dangerous extremes that should be actively opposed.

In the meantime, Niben learns the druids’ skills: scouting, hunting, stealth and using the bow at first, and later those powers of a more supernatural nature. While Niben is not as fast or as stealthy as some, he grows strong and healthy (especially compared to the elves, who tend to be sickly) and has a good dose of talent for druidic magic. He might be outrun by any elf on a short distance, but he can run long hours without stopping, and learns to survive on his own in the woods (when duty calls him to) long before the elves of his age. Soon, he becomes a vital and trusted member of the small druid community, with large responsibilities as the outermost guard or similar tasks. With his dwarven eyes, he is also very important at night, when he can see far better than the druids, even challenging some of the animals with his relentless eagle-eyes.

Like that of a human, the mind of a dwarf is adaptive. The subconscious is prone to hide facts that interfere with the forming of a consistent worldview from conscious thought. Therefore, it is only at surprisingly late age (even after he is introduced to magic) that Niben realizes he is different from the elves (being, of course, a dwarf). Mildly shocked, he asks his adopted parents about it. After they tell him about that strange night when these “dwarves” (a word Niben has never heard before) left their baby in the forest after being slain he is shocked even more. It takes some time, but eventually he can at least somewhat accept the decisions the elves made in this matter. Gradually he starts searching for his own identity. No longer feeling fully bound by the druids’ oaths and teachings, his ideas about nature and the world become more radical. He rejects the druids’ active approach, seeing nature as something that balances itself first and foremost. Any interference by sentient beings on the side of the weak helps that same weakness survive in nature, thus lowering the overall level of development of the world.

His ideas lead to strained relations with the elves. For a time they silently watch him, but one dark day everything comes together in the worst possible way. It is early in the morning and still dark. Niben comes home from guard duty to his adopted parents’ house, on the edge of the small forest community the elves inhabit. He hears screaming, and finds the community under attack by a warband of goblins lost in the forest. They are easily vanquished, but Niben comes just too late to save his adopted parents from being the only victims, caught in surprise. In terror and rage, he accuses the leaders of the elves of meddling, inattentiveness and risking lives. He takes a spear and leaves, making promises and swearing oaths against anything and everything as he goes. When he finally calms down hours later, he distils his feelings into a strong and determined hate for goblins. “My revenge will come,” he thinks, “but now I will finally find my own life!” Apparently the elves have not followed him. “Ungrateful baby-thieves,” he mutters, “let’s see how they fare without me.”

He leaves the forest and travels down the countryside for some time. He also finds the great dwarven cities under the mountains. The dwarves can’t tell him who his parents or his clan are, and Niben finds life underground uncomfortable. Niben does adopt a dwarven name for himself to reflect his abandonment of his past with the elves: he now calls himself Mīm the Clan-less. Once back in the wilderness, he also calls an animal companion, the eagle Ibun, to augment his eyes from above. He travels to the city and accepts a simple job there, looking for ways to increase his own power.

Half a year later, Mīm gets involved in a strange matter. He and an elf named Fuinglin are attacked by a giant rat, which was apparently given birth seconds ago by a normal-looking woman, who did not survive the process. Mīm is bitten before the creature is slain. After being slain, the rat turns into a normal human baby. During the following three nights, Mīm is plagued by terrible dreams, and each time wakes up in a strange house, dead bodies all around him.

He soon learns that he has contracted the curse of lycanthropy, turning into a wolf at every full moon. As the city guard starts taking an interest in him, he decides to leave. Humans have also disappointed him, and Mīm has no plans of ever returning to the company of “intelligent” creatures. Once again, he lives in and off the wilderness. He masters his new powers: his senses are sharpened (especially his nose) and his skin thickens, and in his wolf and hybrid (wolf-man) guises he is physically almost invincible. He also becomes more in tune with nature, and as autumn sets he starts favouring stormy weather-based spells. At night, especially in the light of the full moon, Mīm and Ibun use their sharp eyes to hunt in the forest where the leaves have fallen.

The dwarf does not give in to the lure of evil though. Before he leaves human lands, he learns that those who embrace the curse and voluntarily change into a wolf go insane. Mīm thinks he can control himself. He never actively changes form, and resists the change when it comes, unless he is threatened (in battle, for example), when he allows the urge to overcome him without encouraging it. Even as it becomes ever harder, the druid finds himself capable of holding on to his sanity and his impartiality to the morality of the civilized world and its enemies.

Today, he travels among the autumn trees, hunting with Ibun and shunning other people. The careless will find themselves under attack as soon as they enter his territory in a way he deems threatening.

Traits and looks
Mīm the Clan-less is a sixty-two year old dwarf. He is small even for a dwarf (4 ft.) but stocky (157 lb.) His eyes are brown and his skin is tan. His hair is somewhat lighter. When he lived with the elves he wore his hair short and no beard. Before he went to the dwarven cities, he grew a beard and long hair. After leaving the city, his hair and beard have grown wildly. Mīm no longer cares.
Mīm believes that everyone must fend for himself, and that meddling in the Balance only disturbs the Balance.
While his philosophy is quite complicated, he isn’t particularly bright (quite the opposite in fact). His beliefs stem from his instincts and feelings, not from logical deduction.
He is determined to shape his own life. He wants to gain personal power but desires to be left alone.
He remembers every wrong every done to him. In the past, he has sworn revenge on the goblins, but now he is concerned with his day-to-day life and will not attack anyone unless he thinks they threaten him in some way.
His animal companion is the gray eagle Ibun that used to hunt the borders of Mīm’s forest. They consider each other their only friends.
Mīm’s alignment remains true neutral, with tendencies towards chaos, and ever only a single Will save standing between him and an insane chaotic evil.

2006-01-03, 03:37 AM
Nice artwork, I really like the colouring. I'm allways a fan of that paintlike colouring work.

2006-01-03, 04:13 AM
:o Wow. That is a truly awesome piece of art.

And a pretty cool character to go with it!

2006-01-03, 05:15 AM
wow... :o great artwork... this completely blows my entry out of the water...

2006-01-03, 11:23 PM
That's...that's just good. The art is so...so...:o

Nice entry! I always thought that afflicted lycans took the form of what bit them though. Well, perhaps lycanthropy works differently in his world.

Again, nice work. :)