Halfling Paladin of Iomedae + dog
Broader in shoulders than many halflings, Chebbel has the frame of a stoneworker, though his recent misadventures have left him very wiry and lean. He stands with a upright, military posture learned from his time in the company of a Steel Falcon. His military bearing has an ease to it, however, loose-jointed and casual, instead of stiff and forced.
Chebbel dresses a bit less modestly than many halflings – he values well crafted clothing perhaps a bit too much and some of the ostentatious trappings of chivalrous knights have rubbed off on him. Once he has the resources, he’ll likely kit himself out as a miniature knight in expensively decorated armor.
When he is able, Chebbel wear his black hair cropped short in various styles that imitate soldiers he has seen in his travels.
Lurking behind a thoughtful, nearly contemplative countenance is Chebbel’s broad, room-filling smile. Behind his every compliment, exhortation or even threat is the promise of his smile, easy and warm – why wouldn’t you want to make him pleased?
Weight: 35 lbs
Skin: Golden tan
Born in the Menador mountains of Isger straight into slavery, Chebbel’s early life was a constant stream of cheerful toil punctuated by physical and verbal abuse by Isgeri citizens. As a slave in an inn along a trade route, there was no end of food to serve, drinks to wipe up, horses to feed and leather to be repaired and reworked.
Ultimately, contact with travelers led Chebbel into knowledge and zealous worship of Iomedae, and then into the service of a Steel Falcon named Timig Oresgea. Chebbel hopes to complete Timig’s last mission, to locate and report on an orc tribe holding slaves in the Menador mountains. Sadly, he lacks the resources, information and nearly all essentials that’d be needed to accomplish this mission.
Where did Chebbel spend his childhood? Who were his siblings?
As an Isgeri slave, Chebbel was separated from his parents as soon as he was capable of menial tasks, sold as a “growing stock” to Valf Ganndrad, a human opening an inn along a trade route northwest of the Iron Rose towards Molthune. Three other Halfling children accompanied Chebbel, tied to saddlebags of mules during the long ascent up the mountain. Chebbel’s earliest memories are of hemp rope digging into his skin and the steady rock and bounce of the mule’s gait up the mountain, listening to the grumbling of the older human orphans that Valf procured to live/work with him at the inn. Of the four, only three survived the trip up the mountain.
A veteran of the Goblinblood wars, Valf is an Isgeri patriot. He believes that the country will in time recover autonomy from Cheliax and looks eastward to Druma and northward to Molthune with dreams of seeing their lands taken by Isger. He despises the weakness of the Isger nobility and, with loot and scars from the goblinblood wars, deserted to the furthest corner of the country from Cheliax. He was a fighter with sword and shield and a worshipper of
TBD: names, personalities of the other Halfling slaves at the inn.
About the trade route:
There is little officially sanctioned trade between Molthune and Isger, but raiding parties and armies passing through the mountains have created enough road and pathway that unofficial trade exists, with black market goods traveling with Lady Kaltessa’s unofficial blessing both north and south. The inn’s owner, Valf , is/was hoping that after conquest of Molthune, the route he is on would become a major throughway and his inn would be perfectly positioned. Until that unlikely event, he is happy to deal with the black marketeers, thieves and raid/adventuring parties that pass by.
How did Chebbel gain a spark of martial prowess?
The dangers of operating an inn in the Menadors are many, with roving goblins and the terrifying threat of orc tribes ever-present. Even a slave there is expected to have some competence with a blade, bow, sling or spear. Given the treacherous terrain, what slave would be fool enough to attempt an escape?
How did Chebbel learn about Iomedae and come to worship her?
Chebbel’s personality never suited worked an inn along road traveled by black marketeers, bandits and adventurers. While the other Halflings he grew with quickly learned arts of deception, theft and other low crafts, Chebbel’s innate sense of honesty and nobility prevented him from picking up these valuable skills.
Not all travelers along the trade route were criminal or evil – some were merely travelers, some were noble adventurers and notably, among these travelers stopped an elven troubadour, Gerranne B’spekleaf down on his luck and recently performed around the villages and redoubts near the Iron Rose. Mere miles from Valf’s inn, he and his traveling companions were set upon by a small pack of raiding orcs. Though they fled, over the miles each of his companions were run down, their pack animals slaughtered or taken. The troubadour’s singing voice carried his calls for help through the twisting mountain raod, all the way to the inn, giving them ample warning of the orc raiders hot on Gerranne’s heels. Ample warning enough to bar the doors and windows and set archers on the roof against the orcs. Valf and the keepers of the inn, wary of angering the orcs and sure they would be satisfied with the easy pickings of the travelers, refused Gerranne admittance. It was only Chebbel, angry at this callous behavior, that allows the performer in, lowering a rope from the upper floors of the inn and secretly granting the troubadour sanctuary. When another halflng threatened to reveal Gerranne and have him thrown out, Chebbel wrestled him, angrily declaring the elf under his protection.
This, naturally, did not sit well with Chebbel’s human masters. After they’d weathered the pointed and pointy inquiries of the orcs, and return a salvo of their own, Chebbel was beaten savagely for his actions. And over the following weeks, beaten more. But as he’d lost most of his belongings in the attack, Gerranne took occupancy at the inn as the house troubadour, singing and performing for passerbys – and singing songs of Iomedae’s legends that Chebbel could hear as he was beaten. Though Gerranne worshipped Calistra, he knew the Halfling would take solace in these songs, fostering a rebellious worship that would serve as a slow building revenge against Valf for having closed his doors on a traveler in need. Over the months it took Gerranne to save enough to travel onwards, he gave Chebbel enough songs and stories that by the time Gerrane left, Chebbel was a fierce devotee of The Inheritor.
How did Chebbel become a Paladin?
An adventuring party, including Timig Oresgea, a Knight of the Steel Falcons, stayed overnight at the inn.
TBD: information about Chebbel joining up with Timig, what happened to Valf and the inn and the other halflings and orphans there.
How did Chebbel find himself alone and seeking companions to help him pursue justice?
At the request of the Bellflower network (Chebbel was aware of only the network’s name, not any particulars of who the party was tasked by), the adventuring party was seeking a to disrupt an orc tribe and free the orc’s human and Halfling slaves. But things went wrong and while the party did locate the tribe’s major encampment, they did so by stumbling right onto it. Chebbel watched as hundreds of orcs boiled out of the mountainside, watched as axes and arrows rained down from the cliffs, impaling and dismembering his traveling companions. Timig, knowing that his doom was certain, ordered Chebbel to flee to Canorate and find a way to deliver the location of the tribal settlement to the Steel Falcons or the Bellflower Network. Chebbel holds a powerful shame for having left his companions and mentor to die, but his even greater shame is that he never learned to navigate mountains or survive well in the wild. He has only the vaguest idea of where the settlement really is and only a few terrible, novice attempts at maps as physical evidence to present to the Falcons or the Network. Still, he’s optimistic that the many slaves held by the orcs can one day be rescued, with Iomedae’s guidance, he will one day lead a cartographer into the mountains, create a survey of the tribe, and if he is lucky, be allowed to participate in the battle to defeat the orcs and free those enslaved by them.
Nearby powerful influences: The Iron Rose, a lavish palace belongs to the centuries-old noblewoman Lady Kaltessa Iyis, also known as the Widow Queen. She is a high priestess of Mammon. The lush valley lorded over by Kaltessa is an important waypoint for goods traveling from Druma to the capital of Isger, as well as some unofficial trade routes between Molthune and both Isger and Druma.