Drows Long Night in Faerûn
Deceased Copper Dragonborn
• Height 6’5
• Weight 220 lbs
• Smokey brown eyes with a red tint, crackles with cobalt flashes when furious, other effects when experiencing other strong emotions. Personally unaware of the effect.
• Copper coloured Dragonborn, dusty yellow red.
• Broad nose on the tip of a short snout. Mouth and facial configuration approaching that of a human or an elf, still unmistakably pure dragonborn, but too human looking to be anything but hideously ugly to my own kind. Possibly the reason he was abandoned by his true parents.
• Age about 18
Chapter 1: The Wilderness Years
I never knew my parents, I never knew my family, dragon clan or tribe, whatever they were apart of. They left me with naught but a name in the care of Wood Elves at the earliest opportunity I was told. I grew quickly, very quickly and left their care as soon I could run. I feel their “care” is an exaggeration of the term. My earliest memory was herding sheep for some of the Wood Elves way out in the wilderness. Twenty five sheep were the closest thing I had to family. The conversation was a little underwhelming perhaps they didn’t understand Draconic, the Wood Elves certainly didn’t. The Wood Elves would occasionally come by, to take the wool from the sheep and take a couple back home with them. Those sheep were never seen again. I eventually figured that they were eating the poor creatures. In my curiosity I ate a sheep once or twice, but eating ones’ family satiated my stomach and hungered my soul. When I could I ate upon my sheep’s would be predators; foxes and wolves. I became skilled at finding food and water for myself. After a few years, my command of the Elvish language grew stronger and I would trade my food to stop the Elves killing my friends, the sheep. In hindsight, I didn’t strike great bargains.
One night was particularly miserable. The rain was falling so hard it drowned out the thunder entirely. The sheep were restless, pushing into one another to take comfort from the storm. I decided to take refuge up a nearby tree, so I could watch over them, should one get separated. I wish one had got separated. An enormous dragon seemed to come flying out of the moon, it wingspan comparable to the horizon, it bellowed a scarlet wind of fire. In an instant, long enough for me to gasp, they were all roasted. They didn’t know much pain. The burst of fire took hold on the tree I had taken refuge in. I fell in agony into the puddles beneath the tree. The whole time, I couldn’t look away from the monstrous dragon, red scaled and soaring nonchalantly off over the horizon. My friends, my world, scorched into oblivion in an instant.
The Elves came by the following morning to sift through the sheep carcasses for anything they could possibly salvage. I felt sick about it, the sheep were friends to the elves as well. I ran at the nearest Elf and punched him through the jaw. I was young, sizable enough to trouble the Elves but not the dexterity or grace to match them. Two arrows burst through my left thigh and I stumbled to the ground gracelessly kicking up enough dust to blind my eyes. My anger kept me conscious as they kicked me again and again.
Boredom was my saviour. The Elves eventually grew bored eliciting groans of pain from me. It took a few hours but their amusement subsided, they threw me into the river and fired arrows at me as the torrents took my body off to the falls. Somehow they didn’t strike too deeply into my sternum. My drive not to die kept me afloat and fate kept the arrows from finding the fatal shot.
The next thing I remember is waking up and looking at the most beautiful creature I had ever seen. She had hair the colour of the dragon’s flames and light freckles decorating her cheeks. Her silhouette blotted out part of the sun as my eyes tried to refocus to take all of her in. Her shoulders, waist and legs were coated in jaggedly cut tight fitting green material. The same dark green as the surrounding forest. It was a pathetic camouflage because she had eyes of the brightest blue that surely would have lit up the night sky. She looked unthreatening with her delicate slender frame but when she smiled, my soul panicked and I froze. She spoke words I couldn’t discern, leant over me once more and pulled the arrows from my body without the slightest trace of sympathy.
Her name was Aurora-Lynn. She was but one of a countless bandit-clan. They saved me from the river so I could live free. That was what united every one of them, their children were raised with that belief. Aurora-Lynn was only a few years old than I. She told me that she had decided to rescue me because she had thought I was exceptionally talented at the art of disguise because I didn’t look like a true dragonborn. “I look Human?” I asked “No, you look stomach turning hideous” came the rough voice of round muscled dwarf standing a few feet back from her. I grinned back at him, they knew it was no disguise.
Chapter 2: An Assassin’s Calling
The bandit clan became my family, no one was related and we liked that. Everyone helped one another strengthen their skills and split the bounty. I didn’t care much about the bounty, I loved learning things, getting better at everything. Most townsfolk thought the bandits didn’t believe in anything, they were wrong. Kirkos, the leader when I was adopted into the troupe and for many years to come, taught me the hunger for glory. Glory amongst us thieves was the most valuable commodity imaginable because it couldn’t be taken. At least we didn’t think so, Aurora-Lynn showed us we were wrong on that count though. Through one village she managed to redefine the local legend (that was a hundred years old) and build it around her. It was a thing of beauty, the deception, the execution and the casual way she did it. I had never been more in love with her.
Kirkos was an inspiration. He was part man and part elf but he was such a smooth operator; he could pass himself off as an Orc or a Tiefling if he so chose. He conducted our band of rogues like I had herded sheep, allowing us to roam only stepping in when needed. By giving everyone a military rank as a codename, it quickened our coded messages and instilled confusion into the forces against us, the ranks were self-assigned and haphazard. Only the oldest and most celebrated members of the troupe were without rank, for they wouldn’t take orders from anyone. Kirkos eventually ceded leadership to the round muscled Dwarf called Delarus. Delarus had bigger ideas, he chased richer treasures, many thought Kirkos put too much store in chasing glory, Delarus was a man all about the bottom line.
Kirkos loved me, or at least I thought he did, the man could make anyone believe him so I could have been mistaken. He was impressed with how I could turn my agility to stealth. “A 6 foot 5, 200 pound copper dragon has no business hiding in a forest, yet he makes it possible, he dances and flips silently through the strong branches, if we had cause to kill a single knight, he is whom I would ask to do it.” I heard him tell another thief one evening. I had never felt prouder.
I played with the other children of the bandit clan for the most part. We played games of cunning and guile, trying to distract and persuade each other into parting with items. I was regularly parted with all my possessions but I could usually strong arm them back, if I could figure out who took them. Although I was the youngest, I was the most physically mature and a tower of strength to the other kids. I could toss them around with ease and even compete physically with the older bandits. Sometimes the others would tease me for being such an easy target, oblivious to everything a wise man would see. Unfortunately my strength advantage over the other children caught up with me. I stopped growing stronger, the humans, elves and dwarfs just kept going.
One evening after being parted with my clothes, weapons and valuables through someone’s trickery. (They had set of trap of shit for me to walk into, when I went to clean myself in the spring, all my other belongings had been snatched one by one). I followed what tracks I could find, to locate the perpetrators to discover Aurora-Lynn and the other children laughing at my folly. My clothes and equipment lay nearby neatly folded and assorted. “You could steal the scales from his hide” one of them told her laughing heartily.
That became the new game among us soon after, but I was ready. Nobody could take my scales. Aurora-Lynn rose to the challenge the best though. She and I were walking through the thick growth together, which was fairly common for us, talking about how we would be remembered when we died. She confided in me, that she still cried wondering what happened to her sister. I didn’t know she ever had a sister and I asked her about it. She said she didn’t have a family either, she had run away from one of the great cities many lands away. Her beauty was both her blessing and her bane. Her sister had supposedly been a greater beauty. Her family had intended her sister to marry some high Aristocrat but a brothel owner had also desired her services. It had triggered a stand-off, her family had been killed. Aurora-Lynn had escaped by bartering with some companions leaving the city. They turned out to bandits.
She was normally loath to be vulnerable like this, I pulled her into a hug to comfort her. The opportunity was obviously too good to pass up, a felt her fingers creeping at my chest to pluck a scale, but our embrace was too tight to afford her enough room to do so. I didn’t say anything, I just smiled to myself.
Chapter 3: A Coming of Age
Sometime later, I was creeping through the branches when I came across an exchange that I was probably not meant hear. Kirkos was talking to Aurora-Lynn, this didn’t seem out of the ordinary at all. It was plain to see to even me that she was his protégé. Her local legend stunt had firmly assured that. Aurora-Lynn told Kirkos “I more than ready to trick travellers on my own terms”. Kirkos told her, “Gentle one, that’s not the way our bandit-clan works, we look out for one another, mercenaries and barbarians on the road will look for any excuse to attack people, would be thieves are killed much more often than you believe.” Aurora-Lynn grew quickly haughty and replied “You know I’m better than that.” Kirkos was ready for her argument “Ask Bordeaux to be your Lieutenant, and patrol the crossroads and highways, three days ride south of our forest.” Aurora-Lynn’s jaw dropped, her eyes rolled and her nostrils flared, she very nearly snarled “Bordeaux, but he is a fucking idiot” she shrieked as she glared back at Kirkos ,”He is sweet but his heads stuffed so far up his arse, he has been taken for everything he has, seventeen times over, night time would creep up on him and take him by surprise, Bordeaux!, get real Kirkos, I’m going to rob the rich rotten and often, when I want to start a war, I’ll ask for Bordeaux.” Kirkos smiled back, infuriating her further but he spoke with a very different tone than his placid face suggested “When you can steal the scales from his hide, then you will be free to make your own decisions, until then you are my protégé and my counsel should be followed.” Aurora-Lynn looked enraged but defeated. I had never seen Kirkos assert his authority like that before, I’m not sure Aurora-Lynn had too often either. “If you are sure of him” she said, more meekly than she probably intended. Kirkos’ shoulders dropped and he reached upwards stretching and sighing, deeply relieved she wasn’t fighting him further. After a few moments passed in silence. He then said “I am sure! you children play and you can only wit Bordeaux out of what he does not value, he grew up in the outlands, he values next to nothing you can take. He doesn’t have the wisdom to value that which others want either. He would be your perfect ally, your perfect foil. The only question I have is, do you trust him?”
Aurora-Lynn and I made a superb team. Aurora-Lynn would scamper screaming upon travellers, tears pouring down her face when she told them “some dragon-man-beast is chasing me” “An evil monster raped me, I only just got away” or “Help! Help! A dragonborn ate my baby”. Most travellers fell straight into her deception, all the men wanted to be her hero. She would case them while they rode onto to the next town or village. If the wagon or caravan had treasures, I would attack one of them and take off into the forest. I was terrific at hiding from the knights and paladins, they knew how to fight but never had the stomach to learn anything else. If the wagon was empty, I would creep my way about the wagon to kill all the surrounding guards silently. I was to intentionally fail to kill one of the guards; the driver. By the next town or village Aurora-Lynn would be protected amongst the town’s treasures while most of the guards searched the surrounds for me, the dragon man beast. A creature, townsfolk don’t need too much encouragement to demonise. I would draw all their men into the wilderness. Aurora-Lynn would flirt, blackmail, seduce or kill whatever she had to do to whoever remained between her and the treasure. Then she would load up the wagon with everything that sparkled or smelt sweet and signal to our thieves, who would turn up with fresh stallions. They would strap them to the wagon and take off back to the forest.
Chapter 4: The Bandit-Clan Disbanded
Aurora-Lynn and I were always close. Finally I told her how I felt and gave her a necklace of one of the shiniest black rocks I had found amongst our treasures. She said I was her best friend and that our friendship was the best thing in this world and as such she couldn’t take my gift. She wasn’t attracted to other races, least of all Dragonborn, but we had a friendship that was better than any romance. “Dwarves fall in love with Dwarves, Elves with Elves and Humans with Humans.” I wanted to believe her, but a friendship with her was only half of what my heart ached for. I argued with her into the night, the magic of love and stuff but it probably hurt my cause. We stayed close friends but to add insult to injury, a few months later, Aurora-Lynn fell in love herself with a Prince we had intended to rob. She had the strength to tell me, she knew I hadn’t given up hope, I was deeply bitter and I couldn’t hide my emotions from her but I didn’t say anything. I think she was hoping to find the fortitude from telling me, to tell Kirkos. He would have been shattered, she was still his protégé and he would know she was turning from her true calling. She was the clan’s best chance at a genuine legend. I didn’t have the strength to tell her anything, but I did put my dragon scale in her hand. She knew what I meant.
The heartache and futility of my pain was too much for me to bear. The forest was once all the joy in the world to me, after Aurora-Lynn it felt like a dour prison suffocating me. I decided to leave the troupe, I left a letter for Aurora-Lynn with our friend Gibraltar because I couldn’t face her again. I set off in search of personal glory a world and a half away. I was only a town or so away when I heard of the troupe’s destruction. The prince had been too high a mark, his advisors were too good to be deceived. In a pre-emptive strike they had brutally raided the camp. I was heavily hooded inside a tavern when I heard the news. The tavern exploded into jubilation. Men, Dwarves and Elves were all united in celebrating my friends’ demise. I took hope in that they regularly lamented the cowardice of thieves. The thieves had scattered at first opportunity allowing some to escape.
Rumour was; they were searching for what who they believed to be the last member left alive, the hideous Dragonborn. Thankfully Gibraltar, reached me before the Princes’ forces did, hence how I heard the rumour. A copper dragon scale had been found upon Aurora-Lynn that had apparently proved she was in league with the bandits. I was horror struck that my keepsake had been her undoing. It was all unnecessary, I think she really loved the Prince, baby faced blood lusting bastard that he was.
Our surviving leader, Delarus, had heard the news from inside the Princes camp, what he was planning was anyone’s guess. He had travelled back to find a dying Kirkos being tended to by Gibraltar. He told them what he knew and that he believed that my jealousy had driven me to sell her out. Delarus didn’t even pause to see if Kirkos would survive, he simply took off with intent written across his face. Kirkos dismissed his theory out of hand (I would never sell out Aurora-Lynn and had little interest in money) and told Gibraltar to ride on to warn me that Delarus would be seeking vengeance. Kirkos, in his wisdom, knew me far better than I knew myself and could imagine where Gibraltar would most likely find me. The last thing Gibraltar told me was that Kirkos had passed away before he could leave. And so, aghast at the loss of my love and my inspiration and terrified of the threat of the Prince and a blood hungry Delarus. I took to the road and didn’t stop until my horse collapsed beneath me.
Chapter 5: Penance in Never Winter
I stumbled into Never-Winter many months on, still consumed with heartache and shame. My mind had concluded that had I been born of a human, Aurora-Lynn would have loved me and my family would never had died. The other emotion that dominated me, was my shame, I hadn’t even checked that she had died. My liberty had come first. I felt I needed to be punished. Night after night, I fought across the ale soaked floors of the cities taverns. Every night, I picked an opponent whom I thought would deliver me a final fist of oblivion. If there is another cruel ability to possess it is surviving when one shouldn’t.
I would wake up strung across the tavern’s back fence, the blood below stained with my blood and my vomit. More often than not Sawyer would be sitting nearby waiting to taunt me. Sawyer couldn’t speak but he would bandage me and the other victims up after the tavern’s hired muscle draped us across the fence. I always wished that one day, the damage would be so severe that when he pulled the bandages off, my face would look human. Then I remembered, it didn’t matter: Aurora-Lynn was probably dead and couldn’t love me if she were alive. Those thoughts drove me right back to the boxing pits every time.
My nights spent lapping for oxygen on the blood soaked stone floors brought another emotion into my moods duality: Anger. Once the fight was over, I would come to and continue to feign unconsciousness to revel in my agony and hear her words echo through my head once over and over. “Dwarves fall in love with Dwarves, Elves with Elves and Humans with Humans.” What kind of pathetic creatures would fall in love with its own reflection like that?
A woman gave me work, many of the city’s residents found her attractive. Matron was her name, or her title, I didn’t care enough to clarify. She didn’t interest me, Aurora-Lynn would be the only person to ever rouse my pulse.