Ester Oxshoulders

(Dances With Fire)
Fighter

STR 18/80 Stamina:18/80, Muscle:18/80
DEX 15 Aim:13, Balance:17
CON 16 Health:14, Fitness:18
INT 8 Reason:8, Knowledge:8
WIS 10 Intuition:10, Willpower:10
CHA 10 Leadership:10, Appearance:10

Level: 7   |   Alignment: NG   |   Hit points: 67

TRAITS:
Heavy Sleeper
NON-WEAPON PROFICIENCIES:
Blacksmith: 10, Blindfighting: 10, Iron Will: 15, Intimidate: 17
WEAPON PROFICIENCIES:
High Mastery of Two-Handed Sword, Two Handed Weapon Style, Custom Style (-1 AC when fighting with a two handed sword) Pummeling, Specialized in Wrestling

SIZE LARGE RULES: (Ester is considered to be a large creature)
Items (armor, clothing, weapons, etc.) "to fit" are 25% heavier;
She requires double normal food & water;
She has a initiative penalty of +3 on unarmed attacks;
She can't use weapons smaller than short sword;
+2 bonus on pummel knockdown;
+4 bonus on wrestling hold or lock vs. Medium opponents;
Can overrun;
Can use huge weapons (damage die and knockdown die are next largest die), or use large weapons with one hand;
Takes damage as a large creature;
Will most likely be the first in a group to be attacked by some creatures.



Magical Equipment:

Last Laugh
Ester's prized two-handed sword, though not magical is truly dangerous. It is nearly as tall as the 7' giantess who gets +5/+7, has a speed factor of only 4 and she receives 2 attacks/ round. Sadly, it was the victim of a duergar shaman's foul magic and is in dozens of tiny pieces which are in Kariya's box. Read the tale of just how Ester acquired this massive weapon.

+2 Broadsword, "Spit"
Ester's new sword drips acid on enemies on a natural 16 or better. Unfortunately it drips acid on her on a natural 1. (acid does 1d6 dam)

Ring of Protection +1
This simple gold band functions as the standard +1 ring. What makes it special is that it was an unselfish gift from none other than Canliss!

Ring of Missed Meals
This gold ring is crafted to appear as two shafts of wheat encircling the wearer's finger. It allows the wearer to go without food for seven days as if they had eaten three square meals a day. After 21 meals are missed, the ring will not function for one week.

Collapsible Shovel
Not magical either, but of the finest dwarven craftsmanship. Stainless steel in its entire construction, its handle is threaded so that it can be disassembled and fit into a backpack.

DESCRIPTION:

Ester is a giant of a human being, head and shoulders above most others (7'0", 325 lbs.). She usually has a friendly grin on her face. Her nose has been broken a few times, and the bones of her face and hands are heavy and rough. Her hair is long, light brown and streaked by the sun, pulled back from her face by a strip of rawhide. Her face is tan from hours in the practice fields, and her eyes sparkle a merry blue out from it. Her clothing is of heavy but fine cloth-- cream tunic, brown breeches, maroon cloak fastened with a garnet pin. A gold earing dangles from one ear, and she wears a torc around her neck. She wears two large gold armbands as bracelets. They are simple, heavy twisted gold. On her right hand, is a simple gold band. On her left, a worked ring that appears to be made of golden sheaves of wheat. On her back and shoulders is a tattoo of ox horns.

PERSONALITY:

Few weighty thoughts trouble Ester's sunny disposition. In her case, ignorance truly is bliss, keeping her morale high during what seems to be impossible odds. While of sufficient intelligence not to refer to herself in the third person, Ester is "a bear of very little brain". It is not so much that Ester acts before thinking, but that the complete analysis of a given situation is most times beyond her. Hence, Ester will often seemingly heedlessly throw herself into the thick of the fray, enthusiastically giving as good as she gets. Ester knows that her mental abilities are usually not quite up to dealing with the complexities of life, so she will take direction from people she trusts.

Admirable Traits: sunny disposition, loyal, obedient
Negative Traits: stubborn, gullible, sharp as a bag of wet mice... all booster, no payload; in other words, when a thought crosses her mind, it's a long and lonely journey.
Embarrass/Uncomfortable:high-class social functions
Sense of Humor:fairly earthy, not extremely sophisticated. Sometimes needs big words explained to her.
Fears:failing a task entrusted to her; at this point, aiding the party
Interests:fighting and eating
Favorite Past-time:eating and fighting
Favorite Place:although she has gone from city to city on her quest to learn the 2 handed sword, there's still no place like home. But Tonn is awfully nice.
Most Admired: Rhavin
Most Loved: Da
Greatest Achievement:becoming an arms instructor
Greatest Regret:sometimes wishes to return to the simple life of a blacksmith at her father's forge
Personal Goals: perfect knowledge of two handed sword. Live up to saving the world
Other:Ester has drifted from place to place for many years. In this quest, she has finally found something to belong to
Favorite Sayings/Pet words:"kick ass!"

BACKGROUND:

Ester grew up the first daughter of a blacksmith's apprentice in a medium-sized town. Her father went adventuring with a party soon after her birth, heading towards rumors of treasure in the nearby hills. She and her mother lived in her grandparents' bakery at that time. When he returned, he used his new-found wealth to start a new smithy near the outskirts of town, near the easterly trade route, the Walking Duck inn, and the local farmers. It was a beautiful smithy, with room for their living quarters next door, a stream, and a vegetable and herb garden. Some of Ester's earliest memories are of wading in the stream while her mother watched from the garden.

Ragnar was so impressed by Ester's size as she grew, that he started her helping him in the smithy at the age of 6. He had several more children, but none were strong enough to help in the smithy until Ester was 9.

Ragnar had a reputation of honesty and fair trading, as well as skill as a smith. He soon received much of the local business and the business coming in on the road. He tried to pass his values on to Ester. He told her that everybody is good at something, and it offends the gods to brag about it.

He also drummed into her the importance of being responsible about her size. He didn't want her picking fights with anyone smaller than her, or using her strength to bully people around. It was perfectly all right to defend oneself, or other people, but only after giving her opponent adequate warning and time to reconsider. Additionally, she should not be ashamed to consult people she trusted who were smarter than she was, but not to believe anything anyone else said. In this way, she got along with the other folk her age, as well as the adults whom she was beginning to surpass in size and strength.

Ragnar was very proud of his daughter, even if she was a little "slow". She was dependable, hard-working, and good tempered. If he had no use for her in the smithy, he would send her out on to do chores for the local farmer folk, in return for fresh meat, milk, eggs and produce. She would do the moving of furniture for the innkeeper to clean from time to time, and when she was in the bar there were very few fights. Consequently, she was welcome there and usually got a portion of whatever the cook was making.

Ester made it a habit to frequent the inn later at night, especially when strangers were passing through. Sometimes she would be challenged to fight by strangers wishing to prove themselves. Sometimes she would break up fights by trouncing the perpetrator (or both opponents) before things got out of hand. She would always buy drinks to any man she fought (who was still conscious), as long as things stayed friendly. And always she would listen to the tales told by travelers passing through.

One night, a tall, weatherbeaten man in the colors of Estereal came to the bar. He had an empty scabbard on his back. When Ester asked him where his weapon was, he said it was in two pieces, and told her the story of the battle with a rock giant in which it was broken.

The next morning, the man came to the smithy. Ester was there alone, as her father and younger brother were away on business. The man told her he had had a vision last night, where he was told how he could repair his sword. He said his name was Jean Sans-peur, that he had had a vision. His god had shown him the way to fix his sword-- he should go to this smithy by the stream, and a woman would be there to help him. It took a while to convince Ester that he intended to reforge his sword in her father's smithy with her help. She had the run of the smithy, but she knew what Jean intended to do took a degree of skill that even her father did not posses. Jean persuaded her that if she did as he instructed, Estereal would take care of the rest.

Ester's job was to keep the forge white-hot, while Jean reforged the sword. It took hours and all of Ester's strength as she worked the bellows and mumbled the smith's prayer to Azkal, but finally Jean lifted the sword off the anvil by its hilt and walked outside to the stream in order to quench the blade in the stream (the water barrel was too small).

When Jean brought the blade back inside to dry it, Ester saw it up close for the first time. It was a magnificent weapon, five feet in length, and seemed to shimmer in the red light of the forge. "This is a very special weapon," Jean said, I thank you for your help in restoring it"

Ester asked to hold it, mesmerized by its beauty. It sat in her hands as if part of her, the weight of the blade making her stance more stable instead of pulling her off balance as she had expected. Reluctantly, she passed it back to Jean, saying "I would give much to learn to wield such a blade".

It turned out that Jean Sans-peur was a paladin of Estereal, on a journey to Geston. Because of Ester's involvement in the vision he had just had, he offered to take her with him as traveling companion and assistant, teach her on the road, then introduce her to an instructor he knew in Geston. It was a long trip, and he could use the company and protection another person would bring. When Ester discussed it with her father, Ragnar gave her his blessing, saying she was not meant to be a smith, and her brothers were getting large enough to take her place. Tearful goodbyes all around.

And so it came to be that, at the age of 16, Ester set out beside the the paladin's steed in a new cloak from her brothers, new boots from her father, and a pack full of food and underwear from her mother. She accompanied the paladin all the way to Geston, learning the art of swordsmanship as well as the shifty business of dealing with the untrustworthy without becoming that way oneself.

Emile,the arms instructor at the Academe D' Arms was willing to provide lessons in the evening in return for chores during the day -- lifting, carrying, chopping wood, assisting the smiths. He was impressed by the account Jean gave of her character, and then, later, by her desire to learn. She practiced virtually every spare moment, and sparred with anyone who was willing. Between practicing and working, she maintained her sunny good nature, buying drinks for the new students foolish enough to pick fights with her, and working overtime on chores for other instructors so they would spar with her.

One day, Emile came to her in the morning, saying he had a task for the day. Meet him in the north practice field with her gear. When she got there, he introduced her to a class of 20 new students as Assistant Instructor Oxshoulders. After that, teaching duties and mentoring replaced her chores. She was able to spar with whomever she liked on her free time.

The years flew by in a happy blur. She was learning so much, she was respected by her peers, and, by gum, there was something she was GOOD at. She was sad, when, at the age of 21, she left the Academe in order to continue her advancement in the 2-handed sword. She began working her way across the country, teaching for a living and searching for another instructor. Before meeting Rhavin and the others, she had been in Tonn one year, teaching and learning. She is remembered fondly and respectfully in the towns in which she has stayed. She sends word and money to her family periodically.


Read a first hand account of how the infant Ester was really found in excerpts from Fr. Bede's journal.