Hello Writers Bees!
Sorry for my absence last Friday. My boyfriend (Mister Jabberwocky) and I had a weekend getaway to upstate New York. It’s absolutely gorgeous this time of year and we had a wonderful trip. We even went to Sleepy Hollow to search for the headless horseman. No luck, though. Still, what an adventure it was.
Speaking of Adventures….
You know what I miss? I miss playing Dungeons and Dragons with friends. During the Covid crisis, getting the adventure party together has been a challenge. Everyone is trying to stay safe, which is completely understandable. I’m just sitting on a DnD character that won’t see the light of day anytime soon.
Speaking of Dungeons and Dragons….
There’s this talented creator, Ginny Di, who does all this amazing cosplay and nerdy content on YouTube. If you’re interested in Dungeons and Dragons, I highly recommend her content. She’s even got a Patreon. Anyway, she recently began a series of POV videos aimed towards character building and roleplay practice. Check out the video right here!
Basically, your role-play character is having their wounds treated. While tending to your injuries, the healer is asking you a bunch of questions. Her video inspired me to give this writing prompt a shot. This is my take on this conversation, featuring my DnD character, Poet the Tiefling Rogue. Enjoy!
Have you been dead before?
“Sure. Once or twice.” Straining to sit up, a shooting pain stopped her movement. An arrow was lodged in her abdomen. She winced and laid back down on the bed. “That doesn’t look good.”
What’s your name?
“Poet.” No last name was offered. “And no, I don’t know any good poems. Try the bard I came in with.”
Where are you from?
“Originally, from way up North. Like off the map North.”
Do you miss it?
“Do I miss the ten feet of snow and the smell of dead fish? No, I’m happy to get away from that place. The people there are just as unpleasant.” She scoffed as she surveyed the blood and dirt covering her body.
Ever plan on going back?
“Maybe. I might have some unfinished business with the lighthouse keeper up there. I’m in no rush. My gang and I have some other stops to make first before we head North.”
Do you have any nicknames?
“Other than ‘damn charlatan’ and ‘devil spawn’?” Poet donned a wolfish grin. “Friends call me Poe, for short.”
Tell me your favorite animal.
Poet tilted her head to the side in contemplation, staring at the leak stained ceiling. “Cats. I like how nimble and mischievous they are.” “This might be strange to say, but I think cats and tieflings are similar, if you think about it.“
Do you have a lot more clothes at home, or is this kinda… it?
”I’ve got more clothes in the wagon. Sometimes, I need to change my appearance quickly.” Her fingers touched the torn coat beside her, the fabric embroidered with various constellations. “This one was my favorite though. I should get this patched up.”
How’d you get that scar?
A red scar swiped across the side of her ribcage, standing out against her lavender skin. “Run in with an angry mob. I’m not well liked in some circles. Hard to believe, I know.”
Are you a jokester, or more of a serious type?
“A sense of humor is never a bad thing.“ Despite the pain, she snorted a short laugh. “Serious people are such wet blankets, aren’t they?”
Tell me about the last great meal you had.
“My companions and I roasted a whole pig over a campfire the other night. You ever have crispy pork skin? Delicious.” Like a content feline, her tail swished at the memory. “We were right by the beach. Sharing stories and drinking leftover rum. It was… A real treat.”
What’s your favorite food?
“Love a warm beef pastry. Or that cinnamon apple pastry from Dorbinshire. Basically anything wrapped around flaky dough that you can hold in your hand is my favorite. But a hearty rabbit stew is nice from time to time too.” Tongue trailed across her fangs. “Oh and rum. Lots of it. With lime juice.”
Are you a picky eater, or will you just kinda eat anything?
“Willing to try anything once.” Her shoulders bounced as she smiled. “That’s the best part of traveling from place to place. You’ll always find a decent meal, no matter where you go.”
How well do you deal with pain normally?
“Terrible. I tap out at the first bit of pain,” At that moment, the healer removed the arrow sticking out of her body. Poet clenched her fist, resisting the urge to scream. “You little bitch,” She cursed, then reluctantly apologized to the healer. “Sorry, force of habit.”
Do you enjoy being part of a group?
“Depends on the group.” She hummed. “For years, it was just my partner and I, out on the open road. Now, things are different. My current allies aren’t so bad. A bunch of knuckleheads, if you know what I mean, but not bad at all.”
Any party member in particular that you worry about?
“My partner, Endymion. He took a hard hit during the fight. I didn’t think he was going to make it.” The next part of her answer came with some hesitance. She smiled despite herself. “He has been my closet companion for the longest time. I’d be dead in a ditch if it wasn’t for him.”
Are you keeping any secrets from your party?
Poet’s silver coin eyes glanced at a nearby mirror. Within the reflection, a hazy silhouette of a spector haunted her. A chill tumbled down her spine. Her body tensed, hearing the sound of faint cackling in the air. “Yes.” A simple, tight-lipped answer.
Do you like traveling all the time, or do you just put up with it?
The conversation moving towards travel let her muscles relax. “Yeah, I enjoy waking up in a new town every couple weeks. I can’t stay in the same place for too long, or I start to feel antsy.”
Are you an insomniac, or one of those lucky bastards who can fall asleep anywhere?
“Haven’t had a full night’s sleep in quite awhile. Most often enough, I’m staring at the ceiling, praying for a couple measly hours of shut-eye. Being a light sleeper doesn’t help much either.”
How old are you?
Old enough to know a lady never reveals her age.” Poet propped herself up on her elbows. “Also old enough to drink. You wouldn’t happen to have any booze around, would you?”
Are you worried about how things will change when you’re older?
“Never really thought about that before.” Her face pinched in contemplation. A cozy retirement didn’t quite feel her speed. What would the Tiefling do when her bones gave up on her?
You have a five year plan, or are you just taking it day by day?
“Day by day.” Poet watched as the healer finished up with the stitches. “Life is unpredictable. I’m not the type that makes a fuss about future endeavors.”
You have any special talents or fun hobbies you could pay the bills with if you sheathed your sword for good?
“I can read your fortune, if you’d like. I got cards in my pack. And I brew potions too. Want to buy some? I’ll give you the family discount. 100 gold a pop.” She gestured to the three glass bottles full of sunset orange liquid.
Is there somebody you’d trust to help you take out your stitches, or are you more of a do-it-yourself kinda person?
“I can take care of them myself. Don’t have much medical experience but I’ll figure it out. I always do.” Carefully, Poet rose from the bed and began collecting her belongings. “Endymion says I’m stubborn and never ask for help. I refuse to be some damsel in distress.”
Hope you enjoyed getting to know Poet the Tiefling a little better. With NaNoWriMo right around the corner, I think a lot of writers will find a character building exercise helpful. Whether you play dungeons and dragons or not, anyone could use this prompt to workshop their characters.
To all my DnD players out there, how are you keeping your DnD spirit alive during quarantine? And for the NaNoWriMo participants, how are you prepping for National Novel Writing Month? Talk to me in the comments, I love to hear from you guys.
Stay safe and keep writing!
— Lady Jabberwocky
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