While we normally play Runequest, the last few weeks we have been playing some Heroquest 2. One of the players, Rob Smith chose the Disorder Rune, one of our clan runes, and also the Illusion Rune. After carefully reviewing the discussion on the list after I asked, and reading the description of the Cult of Eurmal in the Sartar Companion and Storm Tribe, we decided that while it would definitely be disruptive Rob could play a Trickster, and he had great fun every session betraying the characters, straining at his bond to the Orlanthi thane Desduvar and seducing any potential lover of Erenessa, his childhood friend before the Initiation rite drove them apart forever. When he showed up back at the clan Erenessa managed to persuade Desduvar to bond her, because of the great compassion she felt for her childhood playmate. A season later, multiple betrayals and huge heaps of trouble later, Jaraneesa finally left play in Boldhoime with Erenessa also leaving the story to set out in toi the mountains and hunt her down, acting as a guide for a file of Lunar Infantry. Yep, she was so determined to kill Jaraneesa she sold out the rest of the party (who narrowly escaped) and became a collaborator, leaving the story as a player character to dedicate the rest of her life to hunting down and slaying her former friend, all compassion long extinguished and replaced with a burning hatred.
I might stat up Jaraneesa for RQ2 sometime, but here is the HQ2 version of her character at the time she left the story, fleeing as a goat in to the mountains, pursued by the vengeful Erenessa, and Rob's original pre-session 1 character concept notes. I thought it might possibly amuse or be of use to someone, and the whole thing act as a warning to the dangers of allowing Trickster player characters - immense fun, needs mature group, but worked really well for us. Maybe Jaraneesa could be used in someones game!
Initiate of Eurmal
At initiation at
age of 15 Jareenessa (as she was then) was touched by Eurmal, having the Disorder and Illusion Runes bestowed upon her. She was taken to the tribe’s Orlanth God-Talker who failed to drive Eurmal from her in the Shouting for Trickster Rite. Other Holy folk were called to perform the Rite of Mold and Mold. They too failed to drive Trickster out so she was declared an Initiate of Eurmal and scapegoated for the failure of Starbrow’s Rebellion. She was tarred and feathered and driven from the Clan.
night and hiding by day, Jareenessa was somehow able to travel all the way to Jonstown where she was taken on by and bonded to Simbal, the innkeeper of the Puppet House Inn on Prince’s Street, who foolishly thought having this odd young lady in the troupe would add some creative frission. He was not wrong. At first, all went well, and word spread about the new novelty act. What happened next is difficult to piece together but the resulting need to pay weregild, Lunar fines and a complete redecoration nearly bankrupted Simbal. Oddly, the whole thing was blamed on a foreign trader who happened to be staying at the inn, who was lynched as an Ogre.
With no puppet
work during the redecoration, and having no money to pay the troupe, Simbal had to let them all go. This was obviously
difficult for Jareenessa, being a Trickster. Fortunately, a well travelled and wealthy Orlanthi, the manager of a group of players booked to appear at the Jonstown Theatre thought that she would be just the thing for his new show, and so had her bond to him. Everyone talked about her first night’s performance: all wish they could forget her second and last.
then taken on by an unusually political Chief of the Malani Tribe (one of the Jonestown Confederation) called Dingavar Horsetrader. Her bonded duties included seducing his various political rivals, Lunar and Sartarite, for blackmail and information gathering purposes, and the occasional murder to dispose of troublesome rivals and allies who had outlived their usefulness. To this end, her cover involved being set up as a common prostitute (a canny businessman, Dingavar saw the profit in this as well).
continued for several years, earning her Orlanthi a fair degree of political power, money and influence, and her a new name, until she was able to exact a cruel betrayal using Trickster Magic gained from the shine on the Hill of Fools, where the poor Cottars of Jonstown send their sheep to graze and the shanty dwellers live. Jump-Yer-Bones
seduced Dingavar at his house just before an important city delegation was due to visit in order to agree to a proposal of his (the culmination of several years scheming, much of which Jump-Yer-Bones has assisted with). As they walked in on the pair, she used her new Trickster Magic and shapechanged into a sheep, destroying Dingavar’s reputation on the spot.
escaped in the ensuing turmoil (first as a sheep, then herself once she’d found a quiet spot to change back). With no protector, she was in trouble. She was drawn to Fool’s Hill, an outlaw, needing money. Here she seduced and
murdered a Lunar tax collector who had been oppressing the local poor in the shanty town below. She passed enough
money around to be hailed a hero (incidentally passing the blame to those singing her praises) and hid out amongst them.
reprisal was swift and brutal. Even
though Jump-Yer-Bones had managed to deflect the blame from herself, she was captured by the Lunar troops who assaulted the crude dwellings of the poor, rather than being put to the sword, and was one of many to be crucified as an example to others (scapegoated, if you like). Onlookers thought her laughter was an odd reaction to being nailed to a Death Rune.
The night after
her crucifixion, whilst hanging on the Death Rune in the Dark of the Red Moon, she was able to seduce the Lunar soldier sentry, who pulled her off the cross in order to have his way with her. She
drove one of the nails that had held her to the cross through his temple and made her escape.
One other things
Jareenessa is known for, or at least claims…
She beat the fat
man Joh Mith’s Dark Troll bodyguard in an eating contest. It was going to be a draw, as they had both finished all the ‘food’ available, and there was no more. She then removed and swallowed her hand whole. The troll was unable to follow suit, and realised it had been tricked, to much laughter and mockery.
has eyes that are dark, knowing and mysterious. Her olive skin is grimy, her long, raven hair dirty, matted and unbound. Her smile is dangerous: insolent and lop-sided, it reveals crooked, sharp looking teeth.
She is petite,
small for an Orlanthi, but gives the impression of possessing large appetites. You’d say she looks about twenty years old.
Clad in a
tattered leather jerkin, open and unlaced at the front, a frayed kilt cut way too short above her grazed, scabbed knees and wearing a pair of oversized boots, the whole ensemble is stained with food, dirt and worse. Much worse.
has a distinctly inappropriate sense of humour (as if anything she is, says or does is appropriate) and her laughter is cruel, mocking and knows no bounds. Her manners, too, leave a lot to be desired. She picks her nose, scratches, belches, and eats ravenously and voraciously, shovelling away with her fingers.
She carries her
bag of tricks and a large, wickedly sharp leaf-shaped knife named ‘Tongue’ that she wields two-handed. This weapon is as dangerous to herself and her friends as it is to her enemies.
is not a beauty, but instead, possesses an unwholesome yet strangely attractive ugliness that manages to transcend accepted ideals of beauty and leave you lusting for her. You may (indeed should) be disgusted, by her and yourself both, but you can’t help it. And it’s clear from the way she looks at you that she knows it too.
Oh, and she has
stigmata scars on her hands (and feet too, as you’ll probably find out).
Jump-Yer-Bones or Jareenesa Firestarter. And sometimes Jareenessa Stormbringer.
Has a large, wickedly sharp leaf-shaped knife
(called ‘Tongue’ as it’s as sharp as hers). Giving someone a ‘licking’ is to
stab them up. This knife is as dangerous to the user as it is to their enemies. Often wielded two-handed.
asked, she’s not from anywhere, she has no start: She is now, always has been, and will be after. (yes, cryptic, evasive and hopefully infuriating).
for Heroquest 2.
Description: Brazen Whore
Hero Points: 3
Disorder Rune 7W
Deflect Blame +1
Lie & Be
Darkness Rune 16
Former member of
the [[Clan]] of the Torkani Tribe 13
to Goat (Unclean Animal) 14
Bag of Tricks
Knife “Tongue” (charm,
contains spirit) 16
Heroic Rebel Against Lunars 1W
No Family 13
Claimed by Death
of Jonstown 1W
Enemy Simbal of
The last flaw
represents the fact she was nailed to a Death Rune, and is symbolically and magically dead. Death magics work well against her, and while not undead, she is claimed by death and is not alive in the normal sense: only the mythic relationship between Eurmal and Humakt allows her to somehow cheat death, and still walk among the living.
Is physically unable
to step foot inside a Geo’s – has no idea why.
CJ's uneventful life is now blogged: http://jerome23.wordpress.com/
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