Corruption of Azim
Male Gnome Bard 5 / Assassin 2
Ability Scores (Modifiers): Strength 9 (-1), Dexterity 13 (+1), Constitution 10 (+0), Intelligence 16 (+3), Wisdom 9 (-1), Charisma 17 (+3)
- Alignment: Chaotic Evil
- Hit Points: 25
- Speed: 20 ft.
- AC: 16 (touch 14, flat-footed 15)
- Initiative: +1
- Base Attack: +4
- Fortitude: +1
- Reflex: +8
- Will: +3
- Height: 3’4”
- Age: 67
Skills and Feats Appraise +5, Balance +3, Bluff +9, Climb -1, Craft (Alchemy) +5, Diplomacy +7, Disguise +9, Escape Artist +9, Forgery +4, Gather Information +7, Heal -1, Hide +15, Intimidate +5, Jump +1, Listen +5, Move Silently +11, Open Lock +3, Perform (gittern) +11, Ride +1, Search +3, Sense Motive +3, Sleight of Hand +9, Spot +5, Survival -1, Swim -1, Tumble +5, Use Rope +3; Stealthy, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (dagger)Spells
- 0-level Bard spells: dancing lights, daze, ghost sound, lullaby, message, summon instrument
- 1st-level Bard spells: charm person, cure light wounds, hypnotism, hideous laughter
- 2nd-level Bard spells: enthrall, invisibility, suggestion
- 1st-level Assassin spells: jump, sleep, true strike
- assassin’s dagger
- masterwork shortsword
- light crossbow +1
- masterwork leather armor
- Bracers of Armor +1
- Ring of Protection +1
- bottle of air
- ring of feather falling
- masterwork gittern
- Deck of Illusion
- Deathblade poison
- Wand of Cure Light Wounds
Lest you be fooled by his diminutive appearance and natural charisma, Nock is a high-functioning psychotic. He wasn’t always this way. There was a time when Nock was a poor, unmarried farmer with a quaint hole in the village of Nobwyn and good prospects. Prospects, that is, if he could lay off the liquor and perform an honest day’s work. His fields would lie fallow as he cavorted with other gnomes of similar disposition, playing pranks and acting foolishly for a cheap laugh. “Nock is smart, he just ain’t too bright,” was the common saying among Nobwyn’s elders.
Nock’s world turned upside down when he started mixing with a group of human foreigners. While most gnomes distrusted the outsiders, Nock found them fascinating and exciting, especially when he heard they were looking for treasures in nearby ruins. The adventurers coddled the young gnome, humored his lust for good times. They then made him their scapegoat by hiding an evil artifact in his hole when the authorities got too close. The king’s army and mercenary mages tracked the looters down to Nock’s residence, found the stolen stuff that reeked of evil, and took Nock into custody. He protested, maintained his innocence but was thrown away without a fair trial. The nobleman serving as judge and jury lumped him with the rest of the outlaws. The law was swift and ruthless on the edge of the Kingdom of Validras.
Nock spent twenty-five years in the Far Waters prison colony, the butt of every jailbird joke, the ragdoll in many a beating, the tormented in a system of mental and physical abuse. The guards always looked the other way. The adventurers who had gotten him into this mess were eventually captured and executed or died one by one in the prison. Nock nursed his grudge, staring at the flag of Validras always there fluttering over the frozen prison grounds. His revenge denied him, Nock fixated his murderous intent on the whole kingdom. His prison sentence finally up, he was let free. With no prospects, no home, and no family, he disappeared into the hills, scavenging.
A lone human hiker discovered a starved, half-naked gnome in the southern hills. He took the near-lifeless form to his home in a small town nearby and nursed him back to health. Nock recovered in body, but not wholly in mind. Nevertheless, his survival instinct kicked in, so he played along and his erstwhile jovial nature resurfaced. But the change masked his vengeful heart. His savior proved skilled with music and taught him to play the gittern. Nock spent almost five years with the man till he discovered his host was an undercover law enforcer. Mere hours later, Nock hit the road again with an old gittern slung over his shoulder, blood-stained money in his pocket, and an empty house at his back.
His mission, his obsession is to destroy the Kingdom of Validras. His blind vengeance is fixated on any enforcer of the king’s law, foremost Bernard Isley, the nobleman at his trial. His skill is in the gittern, the cards, the bluff, the shadows, and the hidden dagger.