Tuesday, April 12, 2016

NPC - Bovine the Bloody

Bovine the Bloody

This dour warrior from the north is relatively young to command the respect and leadership of his warband. Personally he has over 180 men and women sworn to him, 3 longships worth, but as many as 8 longships have accompanied him on his southern raids. His crews are well experienced and doughty warriors but there is always a leavening of new warriors to replace those lost during raiding season. At least 30 of  his followers, normally 10 per ship, will be raw recruits between the ages 14 and 16 while another 60 or so will have only 1 or 2 raiding seasons under their belt.

Of the remaining 90 or so men Bovine has two ship-leaders and a half-dozen heroes of his own standing while the bulk of the men are experienced warriors between the ages of 18-30 with a few greying oldesters in their 30's who somehow have not been chosen by the Raven King to swell his ranks in the next life.

While most of his men are normal axe and sword wielding warriors, a small group are priests of the bear-cult. These men disdain the use of armor and weapons and some take on the form of monstrous bears in battle. It is said that normal weapons do them no lasting harm or even recoil from their flesh. A number of skalds also accompany Bovine's small host. These poet-magician-priests are said to be in service of the Raven King and practice healing arts, enchantments, wizardry and even martial skills though not to the same degree as those purely wielding spear, axe or sword.

A small contingent of bowmen are aboard each ship. It is not a favored weapon of war among northerners but Bovine has among his ranks a renowned bowman from the west of the Island of Ghosts and he has trained those among Bovine's followers in the way of the Longbow. About a score of these warriors are bowmen and half-a-dozen of those coming on their first raid are apprenticed.

Among these warriors about 1/3 are swordwomen. They sale aboard a single longship and fight as a single group. They are lead by Hodra, Bovine's wife, and she is one of his two Ship-leaders. While skalds are all male, there are 3 Sedkona among Hodra's ship. These wise-woman carry staves that they use in battle both as a physical weapon but also as an item imbued with magical power. There are also a group of swordswomen, perhaps a dozen among the three-score, who know the ways of the Vol, a healing art that is similar to that practiced among the Skalds.

The heroes who follow Bovine are from various clans and tribes in the north but there are 3 dark-skinned warriors, a father and two sons, who journeyed on some quest to the far north, a wild red-haired warrior from the mountains in the north of the Ghost Land. a skald from the western islands, and even a warrior from the old empire in the southern lands who wears strange green-bronze armor and seems to know every weapon created by man.

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