The Rise of Karzoug
Sryah, Waves at Strangers
Sryah was born to the Shriikirri-Quah, a clan of tribal traders and beast masters. While still a child, she and her mother were foraging in nearby mountains when a giant slew her mother. Sryah hid down wind from the vigilant monster for days while it tracked her to her village. She survived and thrived by following in her people’s most sacred traditions. Sryah formed close bonds with an extraordinary hawk and a talented mare. She now lives in the town of Sandpoint, where she assists in trade negations for Shoanti tribes. But she is no simple merchant, for the winds have answered her calls since that desperate memory and she has reached out to other powers… Sryah’s contact with primal spirits allows her to tug at the strings of fate—for fortune and ill.
Character Quiz Answers
On the road on the way into Sandpoint, there is a wooden post with a sign and small mirror. Painted on the sign is “Welcome to Sandpoint! Please stop to see yourself as we see you!” What do you see if you look in the mirror?
“See myself as you see me? You probably see a Shoanti desperately clinging to traditions that won’t save her people, but maybe the citizens of Sandpoint have more vision than that.”
—Sryah’s internal dialogue when first she read the sign and gazed into the mirror.
If someone cast Discern Next of Kin on you and you failed your save, what would they learn?
Sryah regards Varat (father located near Lampblack River) with discordance and devotion. Varat regards Sryah with patience and esteem.
Sryah regards Isbek (older brother located near Lampblack River) with pity and disappointment. Isbek regards Sryah as treacherous.
Sryah regards Ganmee (aunt located in Magnimar) with reverence. Ganmee regards Sryah with maternal affection.
Sryah regards Tarvor (nephew located in Magnimar) with honor. Tarvor regards Sryah with envy.
Has your character ever killed a person? By person I mean humans, tengu, dwarves, etc… creatures your character would consider people rather than monsters. If so, when and why? If not, what would have to happen before you’d be willing to kill someone?
When Sryah had matured into a woman of her people she was to be married. Wanting to maintain relations with other tribes, her father escorted her to the nearby Tamiir-Quah to vet possible suitors. Before they stepped foot into the temporary settlement it was obvious something was wrong. After heated discussions the truth had become clear enough.
Some of the Tamiir fighters had captured enterprising Sczarni who had setup a disguised mining operation within the quah’s territory. Insulted by the destructive affront, the more aggressive of their tribe ambushed the intruders, destroyed their equipment, injured the Varisians, and captured anyone that wasn’t killed in the battle. The southerns didn’t have a fighting chance and now their lives hung on the whims of their captors.
Village elders demanded the release of the remaining men and a proper burial for those slain, but the defacto leader of the unruly young men defied his elders by grabbing one of the nearby Sczarni and smashed his head against a rock. The whole of the tribe was in shock at the act and did nothing as the leader rounded up the other captives. He took them, and those still loyal to the movement, into the mountains to finish what they had started.
The injured Varisian still lay on the ground the ground next to the rock, barely clinging to life. A shaman and others of the Tamiir-Quah did their best to comfort the man and care for his wounds, but the trauma to his head was too great. Sryah talked to tribal members, gathering what flowers, oils and perfumes they had in order to dress the corpse and prepare him for burial. She disappeared into the night on her horse after the men who had fled the village in anger and shame to commit their unforgivable acts.
The winds carried Sryah and her stead for miles as fast as they could go by star light. When a smoldering fire came within view Sryah dismounted and pulled out the flowers, oils, and perfumes. She disrobed, rubbed the oils into her skin, scented herself with perfumes, and decorated her naked body in flowers. She could tell by the crunch of the frost beneath her feet that it was terribly cold, but she did not feel it. She approached the sleepy camp as quietly as she could. The leader lay close to the fire and she gently woke him without rousing the others. She took him by the hand and he followed her a few hundred feet away from the others.
The wind blew hard and the two made their way behind an outcrop of rock where he wrapped his warm body around her—and still she felt nothing. She kissed him and slowly removed his clothes. She pushed him to the ground and gently sat atop him. She kissed him again with fervor, covered his mouth with her mouth, and pulled her hair down. It danced across his face and the sharpened stick from her hair plunged deep into his throat. She held him tight and he fought against her. His fists crashing violently into her, wherever they could land, and her mouth and simple weapon doing their best to keep him quiet and to take his life.
Sryah did not return to her people that night, nor did she return again for more than a few short days at any point after. She continues to be an advocate for both Shoanti and Varisians, but does not feel at home with either. That night lingers in her memory, relived in daydream and occasional nightmare. While some in the tribes might make inferences about what might have happened, she has spoken to no one in detail about it, including her current company.
“What is your character most afraid of?”
Sryah has seen her fair share of danger and tragedy over her short life. She accepts the threats of the living world—seeing them as temporary. Her connection with benevolent spirits has opened her eyes to the various forms of non-living entities and phenomenon. She understand that maligned spirits can have an affect that persists even after death. As such, Sryah fears such encounters with the other worldly and prays that her own sensitivity to the spirits does not make her and her loved ones more vulnerable to violent attack by such forces.