As the melting-pot of the Known Spheres, the Rock of Bral is an ideal place for unusual characters PCs might not ordinarily encounter in groundling campaigns. Presented here is a giant wizard who can be an antagonist or ally for a party of adventurers, and can easily slide between the two roles. Note that familiarity with the 2nd Edition Forgotten Realms product Giantcraft is helpful, but not necessary to use this character.
Wyrdon’s Wards, located along Wyndlass Street on Bral, operates in much the same manner as Gamalon’s Curios, but it caters to less reputable customers. The proprietor, a powerful verbeeg runecaster named Wyrdon, keeps in stock material components, magical paraphernalia, and non-magical charms. However, the shop is best known for the minor, temporary magical items created with his runic magic, which are all created and sold on commission (only a limited number can operate at one time, equal to his level, and generally need to be designed specifically for an individual; he usually guarantees a certain number of days between 4-7 before the rune may lose its power). On occasion Wyrdon has standard magical items available, but this is infrequent. It is said that he buys any magical items offered to him for sale no questions asked (although at prices thoroughly favorable to himself), and often operates as a fence for the thieves’ guilds of Bral, although no one has ever found any illicit goods in his shop. For those without access to the AD&D sourcebook Giantcraft, assume that runic items he sells grant a one-time bonus or penalty to a specific type of roll, or duplicate various minor wizard spells; otherwise consult the list below for his known runes. In general, his costs for material components are two to three times the cost of those listed in products such as Aurora’s Whole Realms Catalog or Player’s Option: Spells & Magic. His non-magical charms and wards run 20-50gp, while his runic items sell for prices listed below, or for 100-200gp for those without access to Giantcraft.
What is not well known about Wyrdon is that he maintains extensive contacts with both the underworld on Bral, as well as numerous pirate groups, particularly those composed of humanoids, within Bral’s sphere. He operates as both a fence for the thieves within Bral who wish to get rid of stolen items of a magical nature, and keeps the pirates informed of the activities of shipping and other traffic to and from the city. He doesn’t typically inform on the movements of the Bralian shipping concerns, so as not to unduly endanger his position, but any independent cargo haulers, and especially adventurers, are fair game. Captains or crew who have offended him in some manner are also potential targets. Exactly what his interests in this is unknown, but those aware of these activities believe he is looking for magical materials and books that might lead him to more runic knowledge.
Verbeeg male 12th-level runecaster
Armor Class: 5
Hit Points: 53
No. of Attacks: 1
Str 15, Dex 12, Con 16, Int 18, Wis 18, Cha 14
Runes: Accuracy (learned twice, 50gp per commission), Death (100gp per commission), Exploding Arrow (learned twice, 50gp per commission), Healing (50gp per commission), Fate (50gp per commission), Love (150gp per commission), Poison (150gp per commission), Shield (learned thrice, 50gp per commission), Speed (50gp commission), Strength (50gp per commission), Transformation (not sold). In addition, he has uncovered the secrets of a number of very rare runes; one such rune is the rune of Permanancy. This allows him to create runes that do not count towards his total; he does not normally offer this rune on his items, reserving it for favored customers. He also knows a very rare rune that duplicates the effects of the create minor helm spell; he doesn’t offer this rune for sale, however. Other rare runes might be known by him, as well, at the DM’s option, perhaps even runes that can make true magical items.
Weapon Proficiencies: Spear, javelin, staff.
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Ancient history (Borka), ancient languages (giantish), etiquette, modern languages (verbeeg, ogrish, orcish, wildspace common), reading/writing (giantish, wildspace common), religion (Ordning), research, sage knowledge (runes), wildspace navigation, wildspace survival.
Equipment: Wyrdon has access to any nonmagical equipment available on Bral.
Magical Items: Giant Spear +3, 3 javelins of lightning, bag of tricks, wand of fear, various potions.
Appearance and Personality: Wyrdon is a middle-aged verbeeg, about 125 years old. His black hair is just beginning to turn grey. He has a lean, hard face, although he can be quite charming when he needs to be. He holds long grudges and does not take well to being double-crossed, but he treats those who serve his needs well.
History: In his youth, Wyrdon was quite the adventurous verbeeg. Born in a kingdom of the giants on the shattered world of Borka, he discovered at an early age a talent for runic magic. He put his skills to good use on a hobgoblin pirate vessel for a time, but somewhere along the way he encountered a human wizard who was exploring the planes, and joined him on his travels. What Wyrdon did on the planes is a mystery to everyone but himself, but when he returned to his homeland, he had learned a number of very rare runes, including one capable of creating temporary spelljammer helm. He was richly rewarded by his king when he shared this knowledge with the other runecasters and made court wizard. This was short-lived, however, for a young warrior, aided by Wyrdon’s rivals, overthrew the old king and would have killed the verbeeg runecaster as well, if it weren’t for his superior magical skills.