Everyone knows how much I love Allegiants of the Order of the Fist, right? There’s probably a reference to Kicky Monks in every other episode of Lost Hemisphere Radio, and I’m on the record saying I’d love to play one in an IKRPG campaign some day. This being the last IKRPG Character Crunch article of the year, I thought I’d indulge myself and see what I could come up with. As with the other entries in the series, if you think it’d made a fun NPC in your own campaign, feel free to snaffle it. Also, if you feel like getting your creative writing on and creating an IKPRG character you’d like to share, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
The streets weren’t a nice place to anyone to grow up, especially for a lad finding himself in a strange land. His parents had come from a small congregation of Menites in rural Llael, and had undertaken a pilgrimage – despite the young age of their infant son – to the Protectorate of Menoth. Tragically, not everyone the pilgrims met on the voyage were devout believers in the True Law. Some were devout believers in the kind of law that comes at the end of a knife. A small pouch of coin was all it took to tempt the small cadre of bandits to waylay the wagon and take the lives of both of Quinn’s parents, while Quinn himself lay sleeping amidst bedrolls. The child was discovered only after the deed was done, and left mewling on the stoop of a small Menite chapel in the hamlet of Sandbark, near the shores of Drek Lake.
The chapel was overseen by Presbyter Deville, a severe man with no paternal inclinations whatsoever. The child wasn’t yet able to talk, but reached out at the sight of Deville’s Menofix and bobbed his head in an infantile approximation of obeisance to the holy symbol. While he was not a fan of children in general, Deville didn’t see himself as a monster, and immediately sent word to Imer of the orphan in need of housing. In short order paperwork was filed and the child was taken to a Menite orphanage within the borders of the Protectorate. It didn’t last forever.
At the age of 9, young Quinn fled the orphanage. The orphanage had been a dumping ground for low-ranking clergy deemed unfit for other duties, and their bitter resentment was taken out on the children. The sight of children playing in the streets had torn at Quinn, and he had often fantasized that somewhere out there were the parents that he had somehow lost. All he had been able to find out about his life before the orphanage, once he was able to read, was the name of Presbyter Deville, who had signed the documentation committing him to the awful home.
Fleeing his keepers, Quinn took to life on the streets like any other homeless urchin. He stole food when he could, slept wherever he could find shelter. They dry climate of the Protectorate meant that he was rarely in danger of being caught out in a storm, though he had to learn when it was safe to approach the public wells, which guards were likely to ignore a thirsty, unattended youth.
Time passed and he grew stronger, though as his size increased it became harder and harder to evade the Flameguard patrols. He would disguise himself in discarded clothing and trail families through crowds, close enough that to the passing eye it appeared he was walking with them, casually pocketing a piece of fruit when he could. He also learned to defend himself – despite the rigid law of the theocracy, there was still a seedy underbelly to Menite society if you knew how to find it, or if it knew how to find you. A seemingly healthy youth living off scraps in side streets became a target for gangs, but they soon found out that while he wasn’t armoured and equipped like the Flameguard patrols, picking on the defenseless when he was around was a recipe for trouble. His fists were strong, and more than a few street thugs found themselves suddenly struck from the shadows, and left dazed on the ground while their intended victims made their escape. Quinn was no angel – those he rescued proved to be a source of clean clothes, food, sometimes shelter for a night or two. It was a pleasant relief from his usual life of thievery and running from soldiers when the alarm was raised.
One dark night as Quinn watched the last patrol for the hour head out of a marketplace, he heard scuffling in an alley. Dropping from his perch he slipped into the shadows and peered down the alley to find three youths kicking and beating a fourth figure on the ground. Scowling, Quinn slipped closer and closer until he was directly behind the nearest tough. Balling his fist, he jabbed it hard into the tough’s lower back. As the youth collapsed, a second fist drove toward the next, striking him hard in the face. The audible crunch of a broken nose, combined with the mystery assailant striking from what should have been an otherwise unoccupied alley, broke the nerve of the third who swore and fled. Quinn kicked the two downed thugs until they fled the scene also, leaving him alone with their victim – a frail old man, bruised, battered and disheveled from the beating. He wore the robes of a Menite clergyman, and Quinn was for the first time uncertain as to what he should do. If he fled the scene, the priest might worsen and die from his injuries before any other help arrived. If he brought the priest to the temple for treatment, his crimes might lead to his own incarceration, or worse. Not quite believing what he was doing, he lifted the priest and, for the first time in several years, Quinn went to church.
He was given a room to wait in while the Potentate attended to the wounded priest. He wasn’t forgotten – he was brought food and water – but it wasn’t until the next afternoon that anyone came to him with an news. The priest had come to Imer from a rural diocese at the request of Visgoth Elimon. His service over almost two decades had been noted, and he was to be elevated to the rank of Scrutator before returning North. Quinn’s intervention had saved the priest’s life and because of this, the Visgoth wanted to ensure his efforts were rewarded. Potentate Habbe had spent many years in the temple and was well aware of those who lived in the vicinity, even those who didn’t have an actual address. He had recognised Quinn, and his heart was softened by the boy’s plight. Quinn needed a home, and Habbe was certain that Menoth had bigger plans for the strapping teenager than life on the street would lead to. Quinn found himself taken from the temple and escorted South, to the Monastery of the Order of the Fist. If he was determined to use his fists to make his way in the world, reasoned Potentate Habbe, let them be consecrated for the glory of Menoth.
Quinn underwent years of training at the Monastery, and took to his lessons readily. The doctrine of his childhood formed the foundation on which the young man was built, and the harsh truth of the True Law resonated somewhere in his being. Menoth’s will was absolute, and through training he could be an instrument of divine judgment. He debated with his fellow Initiates on the correct application of their training, and became more and more assured as he mastered the Order’s techniques that he had been put in this place to learn what he would need to defend those who couldn’t defend themselves. He found himself drawn to a pair of Paladins of the Order of the Wall wintering at the Monastery, and in them he found kindred spirits. When he completed his training, he asked his superiors to send him North. He knew he had been somewhere near Llael, and felt a pull to return. His desire to be closer to the Order of the Wall remained unspoken. Given his presence in the Monastery at the bequest of a Visgoth, his request was granted and he found himself assigned to join the Northern Crusade.
With the blessings of the Monastery and confident that Menoth would guide him, Quinn headed North. Weeks passed as he travelled, masking himself as a simple traveller thanks to his training and passing through the lands of Cygnar. He came to a small lakeside village and felt Menoth’s guidance. There was something wrong here. There couldn’t have been more than two dozen buildings, and the village was dominated by a small Menite chapel. One of the smaller homes was burning. Picking up speed, Quinn jogged into the village to find the residents crowded around, some openly weeping as the flames devoured the dwelling. From inside he could hear screams.
Shucking his pack, Quinn prepared to charge into the flames, when a sight stopped him. At the head of the crowd, next to a young, pimple-faced Presbyter, stood a masked figure. The local Scrutator stood facing the flames, and with him stood a hulking brute in the armour of a Flameguard Cleanser. The inferno was their doing. Quinn was conflicted. Surely, the True Law charged that heresy be purged by fire, but the idea of leaving a hapless soul to burn to death did not sit right with the newly anointed Allegiant. Squaring his jaw, he decided that crossing the local Scrutator would not be an auspicious beginning to his new life away from the Monastery. He waited.
After the hubbub had died down, Quinn approached the Scrutator, his retinue,and the Presbyter. He introduced himself, and was duly informed by the Presbyter that he as addressing Scrutator Deville. As Deville returned his greeting, Quinn instantly recognised the reedy voice of the priest he has saved in the alley. His mind reeled. Deville – the same man who had sent him to the orphanage to be cared for as an infant, the same man who had been the turning point of his life from street rat to living weapon of Menoth, was here in this small village, now a Scrutator, burning people alive. He masked his reaction as best he could and determined to find out more about what was going on.
The townsfolk hadn’t realised that Quinn was part of the Menite heirarchy – Allegiants rarely wore any badge of office when not performing ceremonial duties – and he soon discovered that the heretic’s home had belonged to a childless couple. The wife had been a very handsome woman in her day, when Deville had been the Presbyter in charge of the chapel, and rumor had it that she had spurned Deville’s advances back in the day. Now that Deville was Scrutator of the region and emboldened by the Northern Crusade, it seemed to some that Deville might be taking advantage of his position to settle some old scores.
Quinn was alarmed by what he was hearing. To speak such things against a Scrutator was heresy in itself, but if there was any truth to the allegations, it needed to be rooted out. Had not his training with the Order of the Fist taught that their role was to go where others could not, to be where others could not be seen, and listen to what others could not hear, that Menoth’s will would be brought to light? He thought on the events that had led him to Sandbark, and decided that he would stay in town for awhile, befriend the Presbyter, and find out exactly what was going on here. If there was corruption, he would find it, even it be in the heart of those deemed incorruptible.
Quinn is a Skilled, Human Cutthroat/Allegiant. He had a destiny in front of him that he’s only beginning to come to terms with, and the life he lived before falling into the Order of the Fist has done little to prepare him for the role ahead. He may not be the Allegiant that Scrutator Deville wants to have hanging around his diocese… but with time and training, he could become the Allegiant that Occupied Llael deserves.
PHY 6 Spd 6 Str 5
AGI 5 Prw 4 Poi 4
INT 3 Arc 0 Per 3
Hand Weapon (1), Unarmed Combat (2)
Perception (1), Sneak (2), Intimidation (1), Streetwise (1), Jump (1)
Virtuoso (Unarmed Combat), Anatomical Precision, Backstab, Prowl, Flesh of Steel, Hardened Strike, Shifting Sands Stance, Languages (Sulese), Connection (Order of the Fist)
75GC worth of additional equipment