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Old 02-18-2011, 01:17 PM   #41
Lariren Shadow
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Wow this sounds really cool. I've been talking with Fea and thought "wouldn't it be funny if some of the fake inspiration came from the movies?" I think this should happen.

I would also greatly appreciate a cameo as Éowyn, since talking with Fea makes me really want to do this.
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Old 02-18-2011, 01:28 PM   #42
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Ok, after much thinking I've come up with the following character:

NAME: Harrenon

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 21, Male, Man, Gondor, more specifically Lossanarch

APPEARANCE: He looks younger than his age and is not as tall as the usual Gondorian although he claims he still has time to grow, despite his age. Has long black hair that sometimes stands in all dirrections and brown eyes.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Is a bit over-enthusiastic and tends to get excited easily. Has periods of shyness although he secretly dreams of being adimred one day for his acting skills. He is much too young to remember the War of the Ring and the only things he knows about the events there come from rumours and vague reports. He watched a few representations given by the King's Players and was immediately taken in by their style, which is why he one day asked to join them.

Well, that's it, so far. Let me know how it looks.
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Old 02-18-2011, 02:54 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Mnemosyne View Post
No, no, the Witch-King was riding the dragon in, and Eowyn had to slay it before she slew the Witch-King, and he nearly scorched her to death, because that's what did Theoden in, you know? (never mind his tombstone)

Or there were FIVE DRAGONS guarding Barad-dur when Frodo the Halfling went there to challenge Sauron to single combat, and while he was there he tricked them into setting the tower on fire and blowing it up and only survived because an eagle happened to fly by at that very moment...
Sounds far more canonical than my scheme to use, very unTolkien-like, a helpful, good-guy dragon.
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Old 02-18-2011, 06:34 PM   #44
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NAME: Therian

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 25, male, Man of Dale

APPEARANCE: Light brown hair, cropped close to his head. Clean shaven facial hair. A thin build. He walks with an exaggerated swagger.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Therian believes that there is no place for women in a traveling show. It is not that he believes women are incapable of performing; it is that he believes that a household cannot run without women, and a woman that leaves her household and her noble and natural duties to be an itinerant performer is making statements about herself that would shame any man that cared for her and her future.

He plays a shieldmaiden for the King's Players, and is not particularly enthused about the role's existence.
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Old 02-18-2011, 07:08 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fea the Reluctant Male Shieldmaiden
Hm. I'm extremely tempted and I have some very fun ideas, but I need to sleep on it. Given the significance the dragon puppeteer has gained (and delightfully so), would somebody else like to take it? I don't feel right now as though I could do it justice.
Okay, well, I'll take it then.
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Old 02-19-2011, 06:04 AM   #46
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Silmaril

NAME: Asta.

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: Early twenties; Woman of Dale.

APPEARANCE: Medium height; skinny; long sandy hair; pale narrow face with rather sharp features. Light grey-blue eyes. Not plain, but nothing special to look at either.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Younger sister of Brinn; unlike her, inherited their father's mechanical aptitude and often assisted him in his workshop. Since the original dragon puppeteer declined to leave Dale, Brinn persuaded Asta to come along with her as the next best thing. (This caused quite a furore in their family.)

Asta is fiercely protective of her dragon-puppet and her sister, in no particular order, but is sometimes resentful of what she sees as Brinn's domineering ways. Although working "Smaug" is her crowning glory, in such a small company she is naturally expected to do many other jobs, such as looking after the props, running errands, helping with costumes and makeup, and playing minor roles when required. She is afraid of being overlooked, and is always eager to point out just how invaluable she is to the troupe. She is also a bit given to boasting in general, and to blowing everyday incidents out of proportion. (E.g. that spider she found in the wagon was HUGE and clearly deadly and would probably have killed someone if she hadn't squashed it first!)
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Old 02-20-2011, 11:19 PM   #47
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Sorry I've been AWOL, folks. Character sheet for Brinn and some more questions for your consideration should be up tomorrow, if I haven't perished before then.
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Old 02-21-2011, 04:31 PM   #48
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Lari, including some movieverse distortions would be fine with me as long as it didn't go into overkill. I've seen this done before in fan fiction to varying degrees of success, and it always threw me out of the narrative a little bit. But if it yielded just a chuckle and I was pulled back in I always liked it.

As far as cameo-ing Eowyn, I did put "no canon characters" for the bit part sheets, and while I might be willing-er to let that slide with Ioreth, who's a very minor character in Tolkien, Eowyn seems to be too big of a deal. I much prefer the idea of "joint ownership" of canon characters, written as NPCs as necessary. But if the rest of the writers like the idea I'm more than willing to yield.

Harrenon and Asta both look great. Brinn will be happy to have a sister who does not share her clumsiness.

I do have a question about Therian, though. If he believes that women have no place outside of the household, how does he reconcile that with the fact that we have two women in our company, one of whom helped found it and is running a household within the company perfectly well, thank you very much? And how would he have joined the group in the first place? It sounds like a lovely bit of conflict, and one that I'd be more than happy to play with, but I guess I'm a bit confused...

Brinn still needs a husband, btw. I can make him an NPC, or he could be Branor (although that would depend entirely on him as Boro sees him, and besides that would make for some fun domestic rows), or we should start PMing various other 'Downers and seeing if we can pull them in. We're still only at five Players right now and I wouldn't mind getting up to six or more.

Another thing that occurred to me, from Firefoot's Dwarf suggestion. I doubt that the Dwarves of Durin's line, at least, would be quite as willing to take liberties with the text that Men of Dale would, but what about children? Depending on how long this show's been on the road (literally!) Brinn could have a few wee ones who could be put to work as "Aww, aren't they cute" hobbit/child performers. Alternately, recruiting talented street urchins for the final cut could potentially be very touching.

I probably don't have time for the character sheet before my night class starts, but I'll get it up later this evening.

Oh, and our company might need a writer.

Oh, and our dragon does need a name.
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:52 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Mnemosyne View Post
Lari, including some movieverse distortions would be fine with me as long as it didn't go into overkill.
I'm speaking for Lari only because I'm not sure she's done with her epic delayed travels yet, and because I know what she's got in mind since she and I were brainstorming together during our bouts of homelessness last week.

In terms of movie distortions, what we had in mind was in line with your idea of stage show plotlines that don't mesh perfectly with the actual events. So instead of having our 'real life' characters go with movie canon instead of book canon, the idea we had was to throw a few Easter eggs into the plot lines of the performances.

Confused Audience Member 1: "Now, I cannot say I was there for this, and I do not know for sure that my memory means a thing, or anything, and all, but I do not remember the minstrels singin' about m'lady majesty the Queen's father Lord Elrond climbin' up that mountain path with a sword!"

Confused Audience Member 2: "Now I heard m'lord Elrond followed the Fellowship to make sure they did it right, so that don't make no nevermind to me, but what I can't see is this: why ain't Tom Bombadil in the story?"

What we had in mind were passing comments that would get a giggle out of each other and readers, but without descending into movie issues as part of our actual story.

Quote:
As far as cameo-ing Eowyn, I did put "no canon characters" for the bit part sheets, and while I might be willing-er to let that slide with Ioreth, who's a very minor character in Tolkien, Eowyn seems to be too big of a deal. I much prefer the idea of "joint ownership" of canon characters, written as NPCs as necessary. But if the rest of the writers like the idea I'm more than willing to yield.
We had this in mind for the following reason: Eowyn would only appear very [very] briefly during the final performance, basically seated silently in the audience somewhere, not actually doing anything. The only activity she would have would be an extremely brief and poignant (ahem, *snicker*) encounter with my Therian, who might just have reason to change his mind about his opinion on shieldmaidens.

So though Eowyn is, herself, a major character, her role in this game would be a bit part, no more than a post or two between me and Lari near the end.

Of course you may still veto it, since you did say no canon characters, but we were hoping you might let it slide because of how tiny and innocuous the role we had in mind was.

Quote:
I do have a question about Therian, though.


Quote:
If he believes that women have no place outside of the household, how does he reconcile that with the fact that we have two women in our company, one of whom helped found it and is running a household within the company perfectly well, thank you very much?
I daresay there might be some tension, is what I say.

Quote:
And how would he have joined the group in the first place?
He is a very fine actor, you see. But all the good roles were taken, and the need for a shieldmaiden arose, and nobody could do justice to the part and/or nobody wanted it, and Therian is just biding his time until he gets a promotion to the part he really wants, which is actually the role of Theoden, because he feels he would be slain with Shakespearean gusto.

I have been slain! he would cry. And then he would give a speech. And then he would clutch his wound, and cry, I am slain, I have died, I am gone. And then in the next scene, still clutching his side (or head, or leg, or heart), he would again cry, Death finds me now!

But until the Theoden role opens up, he's just biding his time, playing the role of shieldmaiden with irritating excellence, and ticking off the ladies with his unspoken judgment of their roving ways. After all, he's from Dale, where women behave like women, not from places like Rohan, where legend has it women give birth in the saddle on their way somewhere.

Quote:
It sounds like a lovely bit of conflict, and one that I'd be more than happy to play with, but I guess I'm a bit confused...
He wants to be an actor, and he wants to be in the troupe, but he doesn't want to play the stupid shieldmaiden, and he might secretly be in love with someone, but I haven't quite worked that part out yet, and it's making him stomp around like a bull with a bellyache.

Quote:
Brinn still needs a husband, btw. I can make him an NPC, or he could be Branor
Therian could attempt to court her? Obviously he'd have to come to terms with powerful women before it would ever work out, and then she'd still be well within her rights to both deny him and fire him...

Quote:
Brinn could have a few wee ones who could be put to work as "Aww, aren't they cute" hobbit/child performers. Alternately, recruiting talented street urchins for the final cut could potentially be very touching.
AWWW!!!!!
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:41 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feanor of the Peredhil View Post
I'm speaking for Lari only because I'm not sure she's done with her epic delayed travels yet, and because I know what she's got in mind since she and I were brainstorming together during our bouts of homelessness last week.

In terms of movie distortions, what we had in mind was in line with your idea of stage show plotlines that don't mesh perfectly with the actual events. So instead of having our 'real life' characters go with movie canon instead of book canon, the idea we had was to throw a few Easter eggs into the plot lines of the performances.

Confused Audience Member 1: "Now, I cannot say I was there for this, and I do not know for sure that my memory means a thing, or anything, and all, but I do not remember the minstrels singin' about m'lady majesty the Queen's father Lord Elrond climbin' up that mountain path with a sword!"

Confused Audience Member 2: "Now I heard m'lord Elrond followed the Fellowship to make sure they did it right, so that don't make no nevermind to me, but what I can't see is this: why ain't Tom Bombadil in the story?"

What we had in mind were passing comments that would get a giggle out of each other and readers, but without descending into movie issues as part of our actual story.
Passing giggle-worthy comments are more than okay, thanks for clarifying.

Quote:
We had this in mind for the following reason: Eowyn would only appear very [very] briefly during the final performance, basically seated silently in the audience somewhere, not actually doing anything. The only activity she would have would be an extremely brief and poignant (ahem, *snicker*) encounter with my Therian, who might just have reason to change his mind about his opinion on shieldmaidens.

So though Eowyn is, herself, a major character, her role in this game would be a bit part, no more than a post or two between me and Lari near the end.

Of course you may still veto it, since you did say no canon characters, but we were hoping you might let it slide because of how tiny and innocuous the role we had in mind was.
Okay, I wasn't sure if Eowyn was going to have to act as a historical source or something. Of course, if anyone wants to run into her as part of our research (or any of the other canons), and can square the matter away with the fact that she'd probably be a busy, busy woman (and I trust all of you to have that kind of discretion), that's fine... I'd just like to limit the extent to which these are played as characters, if that makes sense.



On Therian: sounds good. I do think that Brinn should have gotten married before she left Dale, though, because--well, maybe they do things different in Dale, but I can't help but think that most people would assume something about a bunch of single ladies travelling with a bunch of single gents. If Brinn's married, then we have someone in the trusted position of looking out for her sister's "virtue."

Anyway, I'll write her bio that way for now, and I'll keep filling in the details as I get more input.
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:16 AM   #51
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NAME: Brinn (stage name Celebrindal)

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 27, female, Man, Dale

APPEARANCE (very brief physical description/or as detailed as the player wishes to be): Brinn is pretty average size-wise: medium height, tends to the plump side but thins out during peak playing season (see below). Her hair is naturally auburn, but she dyed it black when the troupe first came to Gondor (she thought it would help) and has been known to do so again from time to time. Hazel eyes and a few freckles scattered across her nose.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER
(again, as brief or detailed as you wish):


Personality: Brinn has a quick mind for ideas, planning, and management: the intellectual satisfaction she gets from being with the Players is dealing with the unpredictability of life on the road and its challenges. She is usually common sensical, but every once in a while comes out with a brilliantly stupid idea that she's headstrong enough to think will work even when everyone is trying to persuade her otherwise.

Her emotional satisfaction comes from making other people happy, and she can't rest if she's aware of unresolved conflicts among the Players--especially if it's going to start bleeding into their work.

When under stress, Brinn tends to pinch the bridge of her nose... a lot... and if it's an ongoing situation in need of resolution, she forgets to eat in her efforts to get everything worked out. She's gotten burned out a couple of times over the years and forced to sit down and be coddled by her family.

Brinn is somewhat clumsy, enough for her to be afraid of messing things up if she makes her way onto a fully decorated set. She has acted before and will do so in a pinch, but most of the time she gets props ready, helps with quick costume changes, etc.

She is possessed of one fiddle, which has been known to entertain the crowds through a squeaky intermission. Playing it is one of the few times that Brinn can lose herself to abstraction.

History: Brinn's father was a mechanical toymaker in Dale--one of the best. When he was commissioned to make the new mechanical dragon for the Feast of the Dragon* in Dale, she had an idea for something to do with the old one...

Talking with her friends and betrothed, many of whom were involved with the theatrical part of the festival, she devised a way to take the annual performance on the road and entertain the surrounding countryside. When the scheme actually looked pretty watertight, her father let her have the old dragon. Together, the soon-to-be-Players pooled together enough money to buy two travelling wagons and draft animals. A few more people were necessary for the scheme to be watertight.

After her father would not allow her more mechanically-minded sister to go with them, Brinn convinced Asta to join them anyway. This has led to tense situations whenever the troupe returns to Dale. Additionally, since many of the Players were better at playing one sort of role than another (whether they perceived themselves as such or not), she decided to see if she could recruit the more versatile Therian and was pleasantly surprised when he joined up. The group set out after Brinn and her fiance were married.

Since then, Brinn has travelled with the Players and considers them her family (though she may have one or two young ones of her own at this point). When they decided they were going to head to Gondor, she was the one to get a hold of a map and figure out which places were well off enough to give them money if they performed. She also helped settle a tricky dispute with the older and better-known Swan Players of Dol Amroth over their theatrical circuit. While in Gondor, Brinn took on the stage name Celebrindal, and this is usually how she introduces herself to Gondorian strangers, because it sounds more impressive.

*tentative title
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Old 02-22-2011, 06:38 AM   #52
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Brinn still needs a husband, btw. I can make him an NPC, or he could be Branor (although that would depend entirely on him as Boro sees him, and besides that would make for some fun domestic rows),
Branor could be, I just didn't know how much of a functional marriage you wanted for Brinn. As you said, I could see some pleasant conflicts. I had planned for Branor to have a massive ego, and usually people like that don't get married, because they are too full of themselves to ever consider anyone else's happiness. However, he does have redeeming qualities, as he will listen to Brinn. That doesn't mean he listens to Brinn ALL the time. But I'll put it this way, the chances he would listen to Therian or Harrenon are nil, Brinn can at least get through his big head....sometimes.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:54 AM   #53
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Boro, thanks for your points. I had been wondering about the likelihood of someone like Branor getting married, but still wanted to punt the idea out there for consideration.

I'll think about it a little bit longer.

In the meantime, I wouldn't mind some input on the timeline for the game: do we want to go "real time" or "half time"? Which do you think your posting ability, and your characters, will be better for the game? (I have no preferences on my end.)
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Old 02-22-2011, 04:39 PM   #54
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Mnemo has been so generous as to draft an utter RP noob into this troupe (not that it took an awful lot of convincing), so here I am, and help me Eru. Since I'm new to this whole section of the Downs (as a participant, if not as an occasional observer) I hope you'll bear with me if I get confuddled at times.

Mnemo, I've just read your lengthy character bio for Brinn and noticed that, among her other duties as head of the troupe, she's supposed to take care of the prompting. This is quite a pity for me, as I have this character in the back of my skull wanting to be let out - the prompter cum poète manqué, who is convinced he could have done a much better job than the actual playwright (if only he had the stamina to ever get more down on paper than a list of dramatis personae and some disjointed snippets of dialogue) and is constantly fighting the temptation to 'improve' on the script during the performance (possibly succumbing to it at times). Do you think that might be negotiable?

While I'm at it, did Brinn write the play herself, did the troupe write it collectively, or do we have a playwright who's somehow involved in the production? Going with the Shakespearean/Elizabethan model, the playwright would probably be the director of his own play and an actor with a substantial role all at the same time, if I'm not mistaken?

As for theatrical logistics: with 6-8 players, I suppose all of us will have to play double or multiple roles (referring to the play, not the game, I mean)?

As for production style (i.e. Shakespearean, Greek, medieval or whatever): how much anachronism would you be willing to tolerate? Because I've got this mad vision in my brain of the War of the Ring as a Pantomime, complete with cross dressing, slapstick scenes, audience participation and popular song parodies... (Allright, I just notice Mnemo's been there before me (#26). Yes!!!)

Finally, speaking of anachronisms, I move that our mechanical dragon be nicknamed Puff.
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Old 02-22-2011, 04:56 PM   #55
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I move that our mechanical dragon be nicknamed Puff.
I vote Trogdor.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:39 PM   #56
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Pitch, go ahead and take over the prompting. I'm thinking that we have one over-worked writer who will have to take all of our information and distill it properly. On the other hand, relegating that to an NPC (no matter who it is) would, I think, be a shame since much of the action will revolve around rewriting. I think that we would all have some input, but ultimately the decisions have to be made by someone or no one will get it done.

Has anyone read, or seen a really good adaptation of, Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens? The title character falls into an acting troupe as an actor-cum-writer, and has to juggle the multiple players requesting that their own favorite bits be inserted (i.e., a tragic character, preserving the Three Unities, etc.). The results can often be hilarious. Anyway, that was what I vaguely had in mind when thinking of what our poor overworked writer would do.

As far as the pantomime: were you thinking the contemporary panto, then, or the early pantomimes in which people actually didn't talk? (Say, you do a comical version in pantomime, a song for intermission, and then the serious spoken play.) I don't think we're limited to one performance, depending on what sort of theatrical era we're imitating. So we're also not limited to one style of theater (drama, melodrama, farce, etc.).

I, too, was thinking that multiple parts could be a necessity, but we can also have more NPC players if we need to fill out more parts on the stage at some point.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:43 PM   #57
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Apart from NPCs, it's possible (indeed, probable?) that traveling actors might have multiple roles within their community.

For instance, when not being Shieldmaiden, Therian is likely busy playing Gondorian Soldier #3, or Wedding Celebrant #7. The costume changes can be a bit daunting, but that's what wigs and cloaks are for...
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Old 02-23-2011, 10:00 AM   #58
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NAME: Cirdacil, Lord of Burlach

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 88, Male, Man, Minas Anor (but originally Pelargir)

APPEARANCE: Lord Cirdacil is one of the most venerable of King Elessar's counsellors, but certainly not the most dignified. Though he is proud and stern and would certainly contest the point with fierce anger if anyone dared to tell him so, he is no Numenorean hero; his face is coarse and ignoble, his bearing relatively short and stooping. Only his acute mind and active personality at a great age confirms that the blood of Numenor runs in him strongly. Several inches short of six feet, his wears a long white beard and dresses in expensively made, but plain looking robes of black cloth touched with a little gold thread.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: No one has exactly heard of Lord Cirdacil's family before, which is perhaps one of the reasons he stands upon his honour with great pride. He is, in fact, of solidly mercantile stock. Decades ago in his middle years, he was noticed as a particularly shrewd, as well as sober-minded and trustworthy, merchant by Denethor, the last Ruling Steward. Denethor, whose genius was for war, diplomacy, and strategy, valued the help of a reliable domestic financier; Cirdacil was given the unimportant suburban fief of Burlach in one of the lower circles of Minas Tirith, and admitted to great responsibility in the Steward's treasury, where he worked long and diligently.

By the War of the Ring he was a long established presence among Denethor's highest ministers, long practiced in swelling the Steward's revenue; but becoming overshadowed, like all men of peace who served Denethor, by the overpowering threat of a greater Shadow still.

Since the return of the King he has been honoured and his employment retained, but in fact his power has greatly diminished, as King Elessar has a far more generous attitude to taxation than the old man and often restrains his more ingenious financial initiatives. He is an awkward figure at the optimistic young royal court, though the King is outwardly very kind to him and jokes that he is one of the few royal counsellors he has within two decades of his own age.

The Lord of Burlach acutely disapproves of too much spending on dancing, poetry, song, and especially the stage, but the King always overrules him on this matter too. Famously, he once exclaimed against a royal grant of a pension to a bard who wrote an epic poem in praise of the legendary Queen of the Golden Wood: "What? all this for a song?"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_Burghley


and his son, Sador:

NAME: Goes by the nickname of Sador in reference to his lameness, apparently by his own choice. This might seem an odd thing to do, but then, you don't know his birth name. His legal title while his father lives is Lord Sador of Burlach, but as a second son, he has few prospects afterwards.

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: Twenty four year old Man of Gondor, born and bred in the Citadel itself (indeed, born into privilege within the Houses of Healing).

APPEARANCE: Handsome, but in miniature for the men of Gondor; shorter even than his none too impressive looking father, at about five feet seven inches. His bright, intelligent green eyes and long, very pale blond hair, however, are extremely attractive looking - if not at all reminiscent of the blood of Numenor.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Sador is the youngest of his four siblings; Ecsichil is in his forties, Aerwen mid thirties (these two are half-siblings from Cirdacil's prior marriage), Circilie twenty-eight. His birth killed his mother, Aerin. His leg failed to grow properly. He is his father's favoured son, easily outstripping his dull elder brother Ecsichil. He is jolly clever and perhaps rather inclined to show this compensation off, but otherwise very courteous. He seems to work very hard, and nobody - his doting father included - is ever quite sure what at.


and his daughter, Aerwen:

NAME: Aerwen, daughter of Aerin, Lady of Burlach

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: Thirty six year old Woman of Gondor, born in Minas Tirith at her maternal grandfather's house.

APPEARANCE: Tall and stately - both for her family and for a woman - but otherwise not very attractive; a big, beaky nose, lank dark hair never cared for, skin not so much luminous as unhealthily phosphorescent. Always dresses in plain blue frocks.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Aerwen is the second and final child of Lord Cirdacil's first wife, Aerin of Minas Tirith. Neither of her parents paid her very much attention until she forced them to do so, by being quite the most studious blue-stocking of her rank in the entire city. With reluctant admiration, Cirdacil made arrangements for the advanced education which has, to the present date, filled her life (or has it?)

But when Aerwen was seven, her mother, never particularly strong, was carried off by plague. To everyone's surprise, Cirdacil married again at once. Though his first wife, married just after his ennoblement, had been born of the city gentry, his second, Eadgyth, was quite different - the daughter of a Rohirric trader. Cirdacil enforced a veneer of respectability to what was obviously an improper situation by changing Eadgyth's name to Aerin, too.

Aerwen loathed her stepmother and the usurper of her mother's name, and wished her nothing but ill. When the second Aerin died in truth, bearing a living but sickly and crippled son, Aerwen could not but feel responsible. Partly because they are 'the clever ones', partly because of her guilt, she is close to Sador as she is not to Ecsichil or Circilie (ever so lovely as Circilie is).

Finally, Aerwen has a secret for which she herself feels bitter contempt. She has not given up hope of marriage, and is frequently subject to the inward pangs of attraction, never yet requited...
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Old 02-23-2011, 10:19 AM   #59
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His dashing young son/son-in-law/nephew who likes players could be called Safilipsidne, or Eddevir, or Robessicse, or Sarfapton, or Pembrocil...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Sidney
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_...Earl_of_Oxford
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_..._Earl_of_Essex
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_W...of_Southampton
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William...rl_of_Pembroke

(plus, some have claimed Lord Eddevir as the true author of the legendarium, obviously (thankyou, Mithalwen-like voice inside head))
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Old 02-23-2011, 11:24 AM   #60
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This looks awesome. I'd love to take part, but I cannot promise more than required activity. Thus, I'd like to have a "minor" character - I was thinking of a 11-12 year old girl who hangs around with the group (someone's daughter/sister/granddaughter/orphaned cousin or niece or something like that) and is a helping hand where needed. I was thinking she could be this "always lived in the theatre world" kid, of course dreaming to be a famous actress one day. How does this sound? Anyone want to adopt me?
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Old 02-23-2011, 03:48 PM   #61
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Thanks for the prompting part, Mnemo! As for other duties, I don't see my character as much of an actor, but I think he can be trusted with a couple of minor roles - e.g. the sort of messenger who only appears on the stage to spew a line or two and exits again; and if there's any backstage chores that aren't being taken care of yet, just throw them my way.
I'm currently thinking about my character's background and will try to come up with a bio in the next couple of days. I don't think he's a founding member, but he's been with the troupe for a while. Any idea where they've been touring before coming to Minas Tirith, so that he could have run into them?

About the pantomime - I meant the modern version, the sort of Christmas pantomime of Snow White where the Evil Queen (played by a man, of course) bares her garters while singing & dancing to No Feelings by the Sex Pistols; which made me think of including a few song parodies of the kind that's so popular in some WW games (*coughLottiecough*). But maybe that's a bit over the top, and we don't want the game/play to go that far in the direction of farce?

As for our venue, with theatre being a new/lately revived art in Gondor, we may not (probably will not) have a professional playhouse, but I could see us performing at an inn-yard theatre - maybe even at the Old Guesthouse in Rath Celerdain, where Pippin met Bergil*?

Ang, I love your character! (And I think Pembrocil son of Cirdacil sounds most Tolkienish in terms of Quenya phonotactics, if that's of any importance.)

And we definitely need a playwright!!! Otherwise, who am I supposed to quarrel with?


EDIT
*Let's have Bergil as a cameo/NPC character, possibly one of our sources of information. "No, there was no army of green shimmering Dead Men commanded by the Witch-King on the Pelennor! I watched it all from the walls, I think I'd have noticed!"
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Old 02-23-2011, 06:37 PM   #62
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*splash*

If I'm honest, RPing has looked rather daunting to me over the years as I've occasionally glanced through the RPGs here. That hasn't stopped me from being curious and thinking it looked interesting, however, and this looks like a good opportunity to get one's feet wet. I'm going to keep it rather minor and low key.

Name: Vëandur

Age/Gender/Race/Where From: 30, male, Man, Pelargir.

Appearance: Rather young-looking in the face (though becoming slightly weatherbeaten), with light brown hair, about 5'11 with average build. His most notable feature is his piercing grey eyes.

History: Vëandur was born in Pelargir and is the son of a ship captain who lost his life fighting the Corsairs of Umbar during the War. Vëandur regrets bitterly that he had been too young to take part in that conflict, and in his heart he thinks the peace of Elessar's reign rather dull. He is a sailor like his father, and comes to Minas Anor with his ship on occasion.
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Old 02-24-2011, 08:16 AM   #63
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Welcome aboard Pitch and Inzil. Ang, love the character.

Lommy if you can bear being related to Branor he'd accept you as whatever relation you'd like to be. He wouldn't be the type to take in an orphan, but would feel a sense of obligation to family. Your choice, and I'll adjust Branor's history a bit if you want to enter his family.
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Old 02-26-2011, 01:20 AM   #64
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Lommy, if you decide to play a runaway, Brinn's definitely maternal enough to take you in.

I've settled on Brinn's husband as well. I'll be taking him on as a minor character, and he'll be the guy that takes on the stock comic parts (because I do think we need one of them). Fairly easygoing, unless you try to stick him in a role in which he can't make people laugh, or won't give him a role at all!
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Old 02-26-2011, 05:27 PM   #65
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Eye

I'm swamped with work for the next three days, but after a brief talk with Mnemo I've decided I will be playing. I don't have the time to complete my bio right now, but I have a pretty good idea of things. For now, the important bits- I shall be a primary (the primary?) playwright, and naturally with a troop this size I will also take on acting roles (I'll talk about my preferred roles and writing style later). I'm from Dol Amroth, and theater has always been my life.
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Old 02-27-2011, 01:15 PM   #66
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Yay! We have a playwright! Welcome aboard, phantom!

And here's my bio.

NAME: Coldan.

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 25, male, Man of Dorwinion*.

APPEARANCE: A few inches short of medium height, of stocky, heavy build; greyish eyes and short, thick, dark hair; speaks Westron with a marked accent and may occasionally be mistaken for an Easterling by ignorant Gondorians (much to his annoyance).

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER: Son of a wine merchant with long-standing trade connections to Esgaroth and the Wood-elven realm of Mirkwood, Coldan was supposed to inherit the family business, but his father's attempts to train him have been largely unsuccessful, as he's fond enough of wine but no good at all with numbers. He has a vivid imagination and a certain talent with words, both inherited from his maternal great-grandfather, who was court bard to some Dorwinian lord.
A few years ago, while accompanying his father delivering a shipment of wine to Dale, he had a chance to watch the Players performing and instantly decided that his true calling was the stage (it probably helped that he developped a huge crush on Asta - if that's OK with you, Nerwen). After a bitter quarrel with his dad (who promptly disinherited him) he stayed behind in Dale and joined the troupe.
It was soon discovered that his acting is too wooden for a substantial role, so he tends to get only minor parts, and his chief responsibility is prompting. His true ambition, however, is to write a historic tragedy, The Fall of King Bladorthin, and see it performed by the Players some day; he's been 'working' on it for a number of years (or so he claims), but due to his lack of discipline, the only parts written down up to now are a list of dramatis personae and a fragmentary prologue.

*I'm going with the theory (presented on this site) that Dorwinion - situated on the north-western coast of the Sea of Rhûn - used to be a province of Gondor during the height of its power, but was cut off by the expansion of the Wainriders and subsequently became an autonomous kingdom, and that the mysterious King Bladorthin mentioned in The Hobbit was one of its rulers. Its later history is largely unknown, but we know from TH it was still independent and West-oriented enough to trade with Esgaroth and Thranduil's people in Bilbo's time. I suppose the Dorwinians, like the kingdoms of Dale and Erebor, were attacked by Easterling forces under Sauron's sway during the War of the Ring and just barely managed to resist until Sauron was overthrown. Several of Coldan's elder male relatives would have fought in the war and told him about it, but of the bigger events in Rohan, Gondor and Mordor he has only heard the vaguest of rumours.
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Old 03-01-2011, 01:03 AM   #67
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NAME: Rollan

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 29, Male, Man, from Dale

APPEARANCE (very brief physical description/or as detailed as the player wishes to be): Darkish hair, brown eyes, nothing special to look at until you get to know him (you know the type). Nearly always has a smile on his face; wears age makeup very well.

BITS OF CHARACTER/HISTORY YOU FEEL MIGHT BE HELPFUL IN DEFINING THE CHARACTER
(again, as brief or detailed as you wish):
Rollan was always a bit of a prankster/trickster growing up, and only avoided becoming a serious troublemaker when a clever relative got him to direct his energy to the theatric way of making people laugh--comic songs, slightly horrifying slapstick gags, but, most importantly, taking on the comic relief roles in the yearly festivals in Dale celebrating the defeat of Smaug.

As Rollan aged, he had to learn to become serious enough to convince Brinn that he actually loved her and was not leading her on for a colossal joke, and once he succeeded the two of them were engaged to be married. It was around this time that Brinn's father was commissioned to make a new dragon, and the two of them and their friends came up with the idea to do a travelling theatrical troupe together.

The rest, as they say, is history. Rollan has been travelling with the troupe ever since, gladly taking on all the comic roles (as he's aged, he's gotten particularly adept at the Doddering Old Fool). He is fairly easygoing, but thinks that Branor needs to be taken down a notch, or several, and is more than happy to volunteer for that job. He can be very unpredictable, though, if he doesn't have an opportunity to play the roles he loves best and make people laugh, alternately sulking, getting angry, or getting even.
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Old 03-01-2011, 01:09 AM   #68
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Brinn's husband is up; he'll be a minor character. I don't know how often I'll play him, and if anyone needs to write him for anything I'm more than happy to share him.

Pitch, your bio looks good--DORWINION!!! *grin* Are you going to be able to commit to the full two weeks, or is he a minor character?

Once the phantom gets his stuff up I think we can shift into planning the wrong play in earnest--if he's the playwright, he'd conceivably be the one negotiating all of the individual players' wants and needs in a script. I'm thinking (if Dol Amroth means that he's a late edition to the group) that we handed him our old script for the War of the Ring play, and he's been trying to make his changes ever since, but a lot of us have been too stubborn? What do you think?

Then, once we know more or less what we have wrong, we can start to get an idea of how much we can try to make it right. We don't have to have every day planned out in detail, but I'd like for everyone to be able to figure out what their character will need to accomplish, personally, by the time the game ends so that we have a somewhat cohesive story. But since the Measure of Success thread posters warned about planning things so much that no one actually wants to write, maybe we want to keep a level of spontaneity? Or do we think that knowing what our problems are, and what our characters are, we'll be able to figure the whole thing out in-game? That's certainly also possible.
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Old 03-01-2011, 02:39 PM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Her Mnemosity
Are you going to be able to commit to the full two weeks, or is he a minor character?
I'd love to commit for the full monty, but that sort of depends on whether
1. Foley's WW game (which still needs a few players, btw [/recruiting advertisement] is going to start and end before we're done with the planning phase - knowing myself, I won't be able to do justice to both; and
2. we agree on 'real time' (1 Day = 1 day, to borrow a WW convention) or 'half time' (1 Day = 2 days), which I don't think has been settled yet. I think I can post regularly on weekends and probably most other days, but I'm not always that inspired after a long working day, and RL, that jealous bitch, may demand attention at times. I'll try my best though.
Of course, if anything untoward happens, I can always get involved in a bar brawl with some pure Númenórean racist idiot so the guards have to lock me up for a few days...
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Old 03-01-2011, 03:35 PM   #70
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Do we have a start date in mind? I ask because people's commitments change over time, and though planning is beautiful, so is playing.
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Old 03-01-2011, 03:54 PM   #71
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Quote:
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Do we have a start date in mind? I ask because people's commitments change over time, and though planning is beautiful, so is playing.
I didn't, but was going to wait until we had enough people on board. Since we do... let's get one in mind, then! When is everyone thinking?

(Also, we should probably wait long enough for the Phantom to get his character sheet in before plunging in... but that should be pretty soon, now.)
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Old 03-01-2011, 04:54 PM   #72
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A question (I'm kind of planning my character) - how long has the troupe been in Gondor?

As for starting date, everything's fine for me, given that I intentionally took a kind of minor character.
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Old 03-01-2011, 05:21 PM   #73
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Five or six years, I'm imagining.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:51 PM   #74
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The sooner, the better for me. Though after this weekend would be pretty ideal.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:57 PM   #75
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I'm fine with starting next Monday, then. Does anyone else want to weigh in?
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:01 PM   #76
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I've got a minor character, so no real worries on time.
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:10 PM   #77
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My schedule is not changing anytime soon, so...whenever everyone's ready.
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:20 PM   #78
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Given the timing of my Spring Break, my best window for high participation is the 16th through the 27th. Before/after that I'll do what I can.
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Old 03-01-2011, 07:43 PM   #79
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I'm fine with starting next Monday, then. Does anyone else want to weigh in?
If Monday means it's permissible to not actually weigh in until Tuesday, then it's perfect. Otherwise, whenever, with the caveat that I'm out of town this weekend (Fri-Mon).
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:53 PM   #80
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NAME: Aldarion

AGE/GENDER/RACE/WHERE FROM: 31, Male, Human, Dol Amroth

APPEARANCE: 6'1", lean and fit, dark black hair, blue-grey eyes

HISTORY: Aldarion grew up in Dol Amroth with his family. His father, Galador, was one of Prince Imrahil's captains in the great war, but Aldarion was too young to serve and stayed behind with his mother and older sister. He was always fascinated with performance and history, and at a very early age he got involved with Dol Amroth's fine theater scene.

His first promising role was playing the part of 8-year old Turin in The Swan Players' production of Narn i Chîn Húrin, but Aldarion considers his breakthrough to be playing the teenage Huor a few years later in an ambitious epic chronicling the history of Gondolin. By the time he was twenty Aldarion's status as a career actor was pretty well cemented, and he took every opportunity he could to learn under Gondor's finest actors and playwrights. He was uncertain of which he liked best, and so dreamed of one day both writing and starring in his own works.

When Aldarion was 28, The Swan Players put on a grand production entitled "The Rise and Fall of the Golden King", which told the story of Ar Pharazon's rise to the kingship and the subsequent fall of Numenor. Aldarion won the role of Ar Pharazon, and threw himself fully into his craft, winning great praise from common theater goers and critics as well. The final night of the drama was doubtless the high point of Aldarion's career, as the young actor received multiple curtain calls. His future looked to be brighter than the sun, but.... life doesn't go as planned.

The longtime master of Dol Amroth's royal theater (and primary writer/director for The Swan Players), Lord Imrazôr, retired after the triumph of his great play, and next in line was a man named Erchirion. He was a good writer and director, but he also had an aspiring lead actor as a son- Amlach. Aldarion and Amlach, as well as Amlach's sister Gloredhel, had always been great friends growing up, but Erchirion was not so kind, and did all that he could to diminish Aldarion's stature in The Swan Players and handing all the quality roles to his son. Amlach felt terrible about the situation and even threatened to quit, but Aldarion wouldn't allow his friend to give up his opportunity.

In fact, Aldarion was initially content to take to this change, as he saw within it the possibility of putting an increased amount of time into writing. But before long it was apparent that Erchirion would not let him contribute much in that capacity either.

It was at this time that The King's Players rolled through town. Curious about the group, Aldarion went to attend their show "The Halfling and The Trolls", a tale that the program claimed as a true story told to one of the members by a dwarf of the Lonely Mountain whose relative was present for the ordeal. It was immediately obvious to Aldarion that the tale was either untrue or that some key points had been left out by the dwarf, as the Halfing wasn't small and was gifted with all sorts of ridiculous magical powers- for instance at one point he allowed himself to be swallowed by one of the trolls and then turned himself into unbreakable stone and punched his way out of the troll's stomach, slaying it.

But despite such problems, Aldarion saw some promise in the group. For one, they planned to perform regularly in Minas Tirith, which was curiously devoid of any sort of theater scene. Second, their machine/puppet trolls were quite ingenious (and he heard fantastic things about their fake Smaug), which meant that they had at least one extremely talented engineer type- a must for any company. Third, there was talent there, even in the worst of them- talent that work and training could unlock! But most importantly, they were people who wanted to act who could most definitely use a member such as himself.

Perhaps this was the answer to his dreams! He could rewrite some of their plays, and help them punch up their performances. He could even write brand new plays! Over time they could become a powerhouse in Gondor- perhaps even rival the historic Swan Players! That would really stick it to old Erchirion! And so Aldarion went to speak with the troop manager Brinn, and with his experience he was quickly approved and put to work immediately.

CHARACTER: Aldarion is a decent enough chap, but his success in molding and influencing the rest of the crew has been slower than he initially hoped, and that makes him a bit grumpy at times, particularly when he remembers where he was such a short time ago and where he is now. In his darkest moments he fears he will never attain the heights he once knew, though he tries to keep plugging away, improving old scripts and playing roles here and there as best he can (which is quite good indeed if the role is actually one that allows him to shine- a rarity).

He has piece by piece corrected some of the most awful errors present in the The King's Player's historical plays (for instance, Angmar is no longer portrayed as a parallel dimension reached via portal, Carcharoth is no longer a badger, and Beren and Luthien no longer encounter one-foot high Tumhaden, king of the very-petty dwarves). But for the most part he has not been allowed to greatly alter the Smaug story, nor the War of the Ring tale, partly because in truth Aldarion would not be able to improve upon them greatly, as his knowledge of recent history is not nearly so masterful.

Despite Aldarion's extensive historical knowledge, by no means should he be considered a historical purist. Even the old stories that he knows well- he is more than willing to deviate here and there if he feels he can add some element of psychological drama and/or romance. In fact, though he's oblivious to this fact, he is a little too obsessed with such things- always wishing for every character to be dealing with some complicated issue or another, and always trying to insert love triangles or squares or whatever to "make things more interesting". He also is sure to include multiple fights/duels in every story, one way or another. Besides his stage experience in fight choreography, being the son of a war captain he naturally received a good bit of training through the years, particularly in fencing and sword-fighting which he has always loved. His horsemanship and archery were largely neglected however once he began performing in earnest.

For the most part Aldarion dislikes any sort of comedy- his fellows are forever telling him to loosen up a bit. He also has a great fascination and appreciation for Asta's tech work, and thus when he writes he is always thinking of how he can use her talent for putting together large moving contraptions.
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