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“Tell me, are you just stupid or do wish for death?”
Varatas Sunweaver (formerly Varatas Elthrai) is an High Elven Sorcerer operating as an adventurer. A free spirit, he resisted the will of his father to become a proper heir to House Elthrai and struck out on his own to seek the answers to his Dragonic heritage. He is currently traveling with a Halfling rogue Logan Ninefingers and a Dwarvish cleric Lothar Hammerfist in Phlan.
“A shame to waste this spell's first use upon an undead corpse…”
While he shares little in common with the typical Waterdevian Noble, Varatas does exhibit the typical Elvish and noble arrogance. However, Varatas views his superiority as not coming from title, but from his own inherent magical abilities. To that end, Varatas is generally described as bombastic, and is extremely sure of himself and frequently boasts of his superior power and skill. He views most matters as mere annoyances, preferring to focus his efforts on acquiring new spells, magical artifacts, and information about his family’s past.
While described by many as arrogant, the young elf also has a golden tongue, able to convince people to follow him even when it is against their interests. Some believe his persuasive skills are magical. If he ever settled down he would likely make a great diplomat or trader.
He disdains the endless lessons and prattling about caution and safety that echo from academic schools of Wizards, believing magic is like any other muscle and can only be developed through practice and experimentation. To this end he despises long research, although acknowledges the necessity for it in trying to piece together the long lost history of his family.
Contrary to his normal aloof nature, Varatas is highly protective of his family, especially his sisters. He will go to extreme, if not outright reckless, measures to protect them. When angered, Varatas has been described as vengeful and merciless, executing enemies without a hesitation.
Secretly, Varatas is concerned that he is simply traveling the same road as his cursed ancestors, and that every step he takes is leading him down a dark path.
In combat, Varatas relies exclusively upon his spellcasting, raining fire and lightning upon his enemies from afar. He is trained in short swords and carries one with him at all times, but rarely even draws the weapon, preferring to incapacitate an enemy that closes on him before retreating to a safe distance. Recently, Varatas has shown an affinity for utilizing his fireball spell as his typical response to danger, much to his companions chagrin.
Several observers have described his spellcasting as bombastic, with Varatas making seemingly unnecessary gestures and commands as he casts. This is actually a result of his experimental approach to spellcasting, his muscles naturally learning to cast in such a way so that casting is no different than moving his hand.
Age: 78 Height: 5'6 Weight: 120 lbs.
Level 9 High Elf Sorcerer (Draconic Ancestry) Noble Background Chaotic Good
- Persuasion (expertise)
Lothar and Varatas have the typical elf-dwarf friendship; built upon a mutual respect and view their respective race is superior. Varatas views the cleric as a greedy, self-interested, and drunk dwarf but respects his abilities. The two have bonded over friendly wagers and shared confusion over Logan’s antics.
It would not be fair to say Varatas loathes or is disgusted by his nine fingered Halfling companion, but the sentiment is not far from the mark. Varatas views Logan as an annoyance, constantly getting himself, and Lothar and Varatas by extension into unnecessary trouble. He views Logan’s new “leaf” as a long term scam, to what ends Varatas has not yet discovered.
The recent revelations that Logan is a member of the Harpers and is semi famous in Waterdeep sicken the young elf.
Possibly the most important person to him, Varatas would give anything to protect his twin sister. He left her when he first fled from home out of fear that she would be injured or worse. Varatas has preemptively threatened both of his companions’ lives over the thought of them even touching his sister.
Secretly, Varatas blames himself for Aletheia’s situation, believing had he been there he might have been able to help her.
Varatas would never publically admit it, but he cares for his older sister as much, if not more so, than his twin sister. He recognizes his sister’s willingness to take up the family affairs and business allows him and his younger sister to pursue their own endeavors outside of the family. They generally conflict over Vesti’s objections to Varatas’ seeming shirking of his family duties. The two last left on less than ideal terms, a situation Varatas wishes to remedy.
Before he left for his mission to North, Varatas left a letter for Vesti begging forgiveness and to ensure that Vesti would prevent Aletheia from trying to follow in his footsteps.
Varatas was born in Waterdeep at the family estate along with his twin sister Aletheia. Varatas and his siblings are the first generation entirely born in Waterdeep, the family having relocated permanently to their summer estate. While Vesti was focused on learning about the nobility of Waterdeep and the family business, Aletheia focused on writings about the world around them and poetry.
Varatas spent his time looking at his family’s trading fleet and finding various ways to keep his keepers on their toes, sneaking off the family estate as much as possible. Tyrion preferred his son act as a proper young noble and tried his best to curb Varatas' wayward desires, but it did not take. The prodigal chilld was drawn to the tales of adventure he and his sister read about, and tales of their adventuring uncle spiked their curiosity about the outside world.
Tyrion preferred his son act as a proper young noble and tried his best to curb Varatas' wayward desires, but it did not take…
Exiled, Return, and Escape
A young Varatas began to display unusual innate magical ability. Fearing his son might bring shame to the family or cause worry in the Court over another Elthrai Sorcerer, Varatas was sent to the study in Silverymoon Initially ecstatic about getting to spend time away from home, he quickly realized the teachers at Silverymoon were instructed to limit, or conceal his magic. Unfortunately, Varatas' magic was too advanced to be limited or restrained.
Varatas was considered a prodigy at the sanctum, a fact he quickly realized as he was able to consistently cast spells without the need for a spellbook or a deal with a demon. Worse yet, he knew it and let his teachers and peers know it. Varatas was reprimanded multiple times for dangerous spellcasting, including nearly destroying a wing of the male dormitory on accident.
After nearly two decades at the sanctum, Varatas returned home to demand answers to his innate magical ability. His father was less than forthcoming, requiring Varatas to flee with what little information he had before he was shuffled back to the Silverymoon Sanctum.
As he fled he was stopped by his older sister, Vesti. She would not allow his personal whims to endanger the family and was willing to use force to stop him. Varatas was not going to allow her to stop him, but was hesitant to use his magic to force his way out of the house. Their standstill was stopped by their mother, who informed Varatas that a boat was waiting and that he needed to leave immediately. For a more detailed account see here.
Early Adventures in Phlan
to be added, for now see session recaps.
Varatas' Journal from his travels.
That is all my former life afforded me. From the moment of my birth I was a cog in my family’s noble machine. Nothing more than an heir, to be some number away from royalty. My oldest sister accepted her place, my younger sister shared many of my views, but would never let mother overhear her. Mother believed we read too much into noble tales of knights and wizards exploring dungeons and slaying dragons.
My father only cared that I respected tradition, family, honor, and other nonsense. I did not care for a gilded cage, nothing more than a possession to be bargained away for some slight honor. No, I was meant for much more.
Then my magic awoke before my 50th birthday. What would be a joyous occasion for any other elf was met by distain. As was proper for a noble, my parents shipped me to the sanctum to learn from the so-called masters. But they were no better than my parents, a gilded cage replaced by a cage of books, restraints, and rules. While the other students could barely make a light without their precious tomes I could fling fire and ice from my hands as if it was second nature.
The masters held me back, saying in time they would teach me more. They repeated I was special, a prodigy of vast potential. But I found them fearful of the truth. They would teach me no “true” magic, only parlor tricks to impress lords and ladies. When they spoke I knew they knew something of my past, but deflected every time I pressed. So I left the sanctum, to return home to find my destiny.
As expected, my parents said nothing, only begging me to return to the sanctum “for the good of the family and our precious honor.” I could see a secret in their eyes that they would never share. I was something more…
For once, the studying I so demised was useful. In our family’s grandiose mausoleum I pieced together records long destroyed and forgotten. In the ancient times our family’s line was mixed with a Dragon, a boon granted to us for a noble act to the creature. As the ages past fewer and fewer of us sowed the dragon traits, but the last member of our family to show them was my father’s grandfather. They called him the Starflayer, as he burned friends and foes alike with his magic, a half dragon elf who tried to seize the crown, thinking he was superior to all. His dishonor brought ruin to my family.
But I am not him. And his sins will not bind me to this cage. If I must strike out alone to find my destiny so be it. I will abandon the family name and take the name Sunweaver, to honor the great destiny I will weave for myself on my own.
Entry 001: Prologue
Aletheia, my dearest twin sister:
I doubt you will ever read this and at the moment I do not have a way to send you a letter, not that father would ever let you read it lest you get the idea to follow your brother on some fool crusade. I hope that you are well. I know you are mad at me but this was a journey that will be fraught with danger and I did not want you to be hurt.
I know father and mother have likely disowned me by now but no matter what they say it is important to acknowledge all the parts of our family’s history. This dragonblood is not the curse they think it but a boon that should be studied and understood. I would tell you to share this with Vesti, but she will likely share mother and father’s views.
I am overlooking Phlan DM edit, you would be sad that the once great kingdom is not the one we read about in stories of old, but it still holds many markets and cultures. As I look over the city’s horizon my thoughts wonder to what would have brought Great Grandfather here. This was the only lead in the family records about Starflayer, but what would have brought him here? Perhaps he studied here, found something, or tried to conquer it?
At the back of my mind, in places I would never admit to anyone, I wonder if I am merely following in our Great Grandfather’s footsteps. Maybe father was right to be afraid of this gift. But no matter the price I have to know. It may be simpler to shut a door than to pass through it. But sometimes a step into the unknown is required.
Fate is a cruel mistress. While its once great libraries of Phlan have remained mostly intact I have found nothing in weeks regarding my Great Grandfather. Not even his true name. For all my hatred of studying I am forced to spend my spare time buried in libraries looking for anything to continue my journey.
Of course my research is hindered by a need to make a living. I have been staying at a local inn, Freona's Tea Kettle, run by Madame Freona and her daughters. The food is terrible and the company I have kept is less than ideal. But mishaps find there way to the inn like moths to the flame. While distracting from my work, it is excellent practice to hone my magics.
I am currently “adventuring” with the most foul-mouthed disgusting Halfing I have ever met, Logan Ninefingers. I am constantly amazed that he is still alive despite his uncanny ability to say the most offensive thing I could never think of. It is a testament to his skill with a dagger that he is still alive. Luckily, Logan only thinks of money, drugs, and women, making him easy to manipulate or control.
My other companion is a lecherous dwarf cleric named Lothar. While I might mock the dwarf and his obsession with ale, he is an unusually competent companion and I grudgingly admit his healing magics saved my life. He rarely speaks of himself or his motivations, but for now it appears he is guided by a holy “duty” to help people.
While my adventures have been rather mundane one stands out. A half mad half orc came to the inn one evening concerned with a magic artifact that could destroy Phlan (I love how everyone thinks each magic artifact will destroy the entire world). The artifact was a blue dragon tooth, which caused lightning to spark between various people as it was seeking a native type of plant to the region. While the half orc took the tooth, he left a flower that was used to temporarily nullify the tooth’s power.
I remember once seeing a second rate Wizard use the bark of a tree struck by lightning to create a constant electrical arc between him and his victim. Experimenting with this flower I believe I not only recreated this spell but improved upon it.
Side Story, Family Gathered
I assume this story takes place while Varatas and Co. are knee deep in undead Tiamat Worshipers and the Like…
This story takes place while Varatas and Co. are on the caravan duty, likely a day or two before the last fight that ended the last session.
This story about the Elthrais takes place while the party is traveling to Parnast.