Thanks for coming back to read the second part of my guide! In part 2, we will leave Drusilla behind and focus on another character, a Moon Elf named Carric.
I took a completely different approach to Carric because Carric is a True Neutral mage. He started out at a venerable age and so I had to effectively describe why such an old elf mage would be level 1. In this case, I chose his background to include some sort of accident that destroyed his ability to cast spells, and this playthrough was a journey of recovery. He still had the essential knowledge of the arcane and the history of the world, but he just simply couldn't, physically, cast his spells anymore. You see, Carric had a brush with the Void, which left his mind and body shattered. It's almost as if he's had to completely relearn how to control his body, to force it to do his bidding.
I did not want him to be evil, per se, but someone who was not afraid to stare darkness in the face and probe into the forbidden. Elves, as a whole, have a rigid social structure and they frown, heavily, on acting outside of the box. And so, the reason this old elf is here, amongst humanity is simply because he delved into things he shouldn't have, namely his work with the Void, and was subsequently banished. So here we have a shattered, broken, an outcast elf, arriving in Shadow for the first time.
His brush with the Void has left him changed in unpredictable ways, as well. The experience changed him, fundamentally and he has become obsessed with reliving that experience, awed by the massive, endless weight of nothingness. His scope of understanding is also much larger than most people and he's become fatalistic, nihilistic in his view of worldly cares. Why bother when our lives, our existence is but a speck of dust against the backdrop of the void?
So we have some basic goals: To regain his arcane abilities and renew his pursuit of the Void. And we have some serious fatal flaws in his win at all costs attitude, and the deep-seated insanity and almost alien logic lying just beneath the surface.
Because of these traits, I chose more of an inner monologue approach with this character. Here are his PCnotes:
1 : Carric, Tue May 24 02:51:00 2022 - I have just arrived in Shadow, and the humans are how I remember them. Bright, hopeful and full of the anticipation of a better tomorrow. How they bask in their youth and hang on to the glimmering, faint, ephemeral idea of control. It is good to surround oneself with humanity. It reminds me of better times...times before I knew the cold, hard truth of it all... 2 : Carric, Tue May 24 03:00:30 2022 - My brush with oblivion has left me a shell of my former self. My mind and body, no longer working in concert, have slowly learned the rudimentary somatic and verbal components of the most basic spells. Sometimes it is maddening to will the movements and watch these clumsy digits, like those of a babe, fumble and flail and grasp in sheer futility. My only consolation is that progress, ever so slowly, is being made. In these moments, I realize how vulnerable I really am... 3 : Carric, Tue May 24 03:37:20 2022 - Tonight I noticed something new, something unexpected, but not altogether surprising, given the present circumstances. As I sit here, copying out scrolls and preparing spells, I felt it. Gently and ever so subtly, the shadows cast by my candle brushed, ever so gently and ever so subtly, against the skin of my hand in a sort of strange affinity I have not quite felt before. Perhaps, as the doors of my old life slammed closed forever, a mysterious new path was opened before me... 4 : Carric, Sun Jun 19 15:34:24 2022 - Dreamweaver. A name or a title? Either way, I suspect this creature is a witch of some kind, and witches have access to some knowledge which could prove very useful. I worked with the group of heroes to delve beneath Shadow, through its various latrines and into a strange sight: A banquet hall, completely preserved, but for the corpses of many dead. This could prove a wonderful hideout, save for the powerful Shadow Planes creature which resides here. Perhaps I will learn something from this creature if a way can be found to control it. 5 : Carric, Sun Jun 19 17:13:02 2022 - The Shadow grows closer to me, wrapping itself around me like a protective blanket, shielding me from those enemies who ceaselessly seek me out. What will these shadows ask for in return? Whatever it is, the price must be paid, for what other cosmic force is there to turn to for such protection and power? I feel my abilities in the arcane grow anew, as I have found new ways to maintain and cast old spells. I feel that, perhaps, I am on to something greater than before. Only time can tell... 6 : Carric, Sun Jun 19 17:18:16 2022 - Seeker has mentioned that the Dreamweaver is a being that fills dreams with nightmares, causing mass disappearances through the use of a magical flute, which makes people willingly venture into the underdark. 7 : Carric, Tue Jun 21 18:32:27 2022 - House Nuah'Katsi; it practically rolls of the tongue *chuckles*. An old drow house, and an old member, out for revenge, presumably. How many years has it been, that this creature has hidden the shadows, awaiting its moment to strike? Revenge has led so many down the road to destruction, and yet, it never seems to fall out of style. Perhaps the need for revenge is so great, he might be willing to trade in secrets? 8 : Carric, Thu Jun 23 13:38:11 2022 - This Dreamweaver.....Was I mistaken? The creature did not fully appreciate the weight and expanse of the void, much like so many others. Does he not realize that all of this...hmm..meddling is for naught? What is the point of sowing discord when everything will, inevitably, be as nothing? It appears I may have aimed too high with this one. He is not a witch at all, so it seems, and most likely does not have the ear of a strange, dark Draem-like occult god. Disappointment. Perhaps I can share what I've learned with these younglings...build a sort of...rapport with them, or something. Once faced with the truth, it is impossible to go back.
I wanted to showcase the journey of Carric slowly becoming a shadow adept. I took my time with this character, much like I did with Drusilla, to allow the character to percolate. I did not seek to level up, save through quests or RP, and it sort of happened slowly and organically. It's important to allow a character to naturally grow in power.
Below I will compile some related avatarmails….