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Arminath Wynter, The "Old Man" of the North

by Jim Bobb

History: Born in the year 384 AC in the Shadow Elf town of Arlirath, Arminath was of average parentage in the small community. Ever curious, his parents turned his desire to learn towards the magical arts and as soon as he was of age, they sent him away to the City of Stars to learn the arts of magic. Arminath spent a full century learning the Art, but also divided his studies towards the creatures of the World Above, learning from texts and word of mouth passed down from elders not yet on the Path of the Wanderer. Around 500 AC Arminath stole away from the life as en elf in the World Below, desiring to see the sky of the World Above and find the truth of the Great Destruction that forced his people into their existence. He finally emerged in the Cruth Mountains in the Northern Traladar lands in full winter and nearly died that day, were it not for the kindness of a Traldar miner searching for shelter.

Many centuries have passed since that first day and Arminath has seen many adventures and lived in the lives of many friends, all now long gone but never forgotten. He has seen the rise of the Kingdom of Karameikos but remains an outsider from all of this because of his heritage. The native Traldar Karameikans in the northern part of the kingdom refer to him as a folk legend, the "Old Man" of the North, as a kindly ghost that leads the lost and unwary that cross the mountains to shelter and food and protects them from danger. After centuries of hiding and living in the mountains, Arminath has become adept at this and even (unbeknownst to them) helped the Alfheim Refugees travelling to Karameikos as they crossed the mountains. He has kept the moniker "Old Man" to foster the legend and to keep any curious surface elves from seeking him out, especially after the Shadow Elf invasion of Alfheim.

Mostly retired from adventuring for a time, Arminath used his magic to conceal his identity and travel about the northern towns and villages of Karameikos in search of adventures to perform "minor tasks" for him and aiding elves in need of some kindness. He doesn't feel the surface elves were treated fairly by his brethren, but knows they won't be open minded about a Shadow Elf aiding them now. In recent years Arminath had settled down for a time, taking the Oath of Binding with a woman he rescued in a daring planar adventure and they began raising a daughter. A few years of peace had found Arminath, but it was short-lived, however. A Demon Lord had taken exception to the slaying of one of its favoured servants and forcibly abducted Arminath's wife away for vengeance. Arminath went into a blind rage and rampaged across the planes, giving chase to his enemy. All who stood in his way, good or evil, felt his unbridled fury. Unfortunately, this played into the Demon's favour. Arminath finally tracked it to its planar lair, but not until he had spent most of his magic combating the various creatures in his mad chase. Unable to retake his beloved or prevent the demon from banishing him, Arminath was returned to his empty abode with the knowledge that he was too weak to save his love.

Arminath has spent the last few months adventuring across Skothar, gathering magic reputed to be effective against creatures of other planes and worlds. Within the last few days, Arminath has been visited by his patron, Valerias, who has given him praise and insight. He is now adventuring back in his native Karameikos, seeking an ancient Tomb in the Malpheggi Swamp, somehow connected to the Demon Lord he seeks vengeance against.

Personality: Arminath was once bright-eyed and amazed at the sights and wonders of the surface world and its peoples. Ever since the abduction of his wife, he has become more bitter and withdrawn, but hasn't given in to despondency or hopelessness. He still feels joy when spending time with his daughter and when travelling about helping others, but he's always on the lookout for items, spells and knowledge that will allow him to gain revenge on the Demon Lord that holds his wife. He hires adventurers routinely to test theories on magic and items against creatures that posses one or more powers or defences that demons share. He doesn't view these people as disposable however, and will not overmatch a hired group with a quest that would be a suicide mission.

With the recent clues and events pushing him on, Arminath has become alive again, regaining the fire of his younger self. He feels some destined event coming close to completion and as events unfold he has felt compelled to visit those most important to him. This worries him, but knowing he is closer than ever to the possibility of recovering his beloved spurs him on.

Appearance: Arminath stands 5'6" and weighs about 125 pounds. His skin and hair are white and his eyes are an emerald green. At times he aids parties crossing the Cruth Mountains and tends to dress in greys and whites when there. In the lowlands he dresses like a nondescript human of Traldar descent using his magic and large cowled robes to hide is non-humanness. When adventuring far from home, he tends to wear the colours of nature; greens, browns and black.

What he says: "Aye've seen a few things in my time. This reminds me of the time....."

What others say: "The Old Man of the North is just a legend, nothing more. My own personal divination revealed that no man has ever done any of the things the legendary "Old Man" is attributed to have done. Chalk another one up to ancient Traldar folk-lore." Master Terari of the Karameikan School of Magecraft.

Combat Notes: Arminath is a formidable opponent when need be. He prefers hit and run tactics and avoids direct confrontation whenever possible. Using the subtle approach more often than not has kept his identity secret and has earned respect from those that he has crossed, friend and foe alike.

In melee combat he attacks either with 2 weapons (using Sword/Dagger) or weapon and shield, whichever will be most beneficial.

Arminath Wynter (16th level Shadow Elf): 3,782,233 XPs
THAC0 9 (13 base, +1 Str, +3 Sword/+3 Dagger) or 9 (13 base, +2 Dex, +2 Bow)
#AT 2 melee and missile or 3 melee using 2 weapons
DMG 1d8+4 (Sword +3, Str), 1d4+4 (Dagger +3, Str) or 1d6+2 (Bow +2)
AC -4 (Chain +3, Ring of Prot +2, Displacer Cloak, Dex)
HP 66
MV 120(40)
AL Chaotic (good)

S 13, Int 18, Wis 12, Con 14, Dex 16, Cha 13

Saving Throws: DR or P 0 (2 base, +2 Prot Ring); MW 2 (4 base, +2 Prot Ring); P or P 2 (4 base, +2 Prot Ring); BW 1 (3 base, +2 Prot Ring); R, S, W 1 (3 base, +2 Prot Ring)

Languages: Elf (Shadow, Alfheim, Callarii dialects), Traldar, Thyatian

Weapon Skills: Sword (Short, Normal), Dagger (Main Gauche), Bow, Blowgun, Javelin, Bola, Bullroarer Knife

Other Skills: Prestidigitation(I), Alchemy(I), Alternate Magics(I), Cartography(I), Engineering(I), Quick Draw(D), Escape(D), Planar Geography(I), Law and Justice Karameikos(W), Survival Mountains(I)

Magical Items: Silver Sword +3 (+5 vs Planar Creatures), Silver Main Gauche +3, Bow +2, Silver Chainmail +3, Wand of Illusion, Ring of Protection +2, Displacer Cloak, Scroll of Spell Catching (1st - 4th level spells), Slate of Identification, Amulet of Non-detection (foils all divination spells), Boots of Travelling and Leaping, Ring of Magery (+1 bonus spell to every level of spells the Magic-user can cast),various potions and scrolls.

Spells: 6/5/5/4/4/3, 7/6/6/5/5/4 while wearing his Ring of Magery (Arminath has every known common spell of 1st - 6th level, and a few spells of higher levels on scrolls. He also has researched spells of his own devising.)