A bit on the shorter side even for his species, Caw is a diminutive Kenku whose beak and colouration resemble a crow more than a raven. His beak is shorter and less curved, and his plumage lacks a coloured sheen. Quite a scruffy sight, his feathers are often ruffled (in a non-figurative way) and the dark robe he wraps himself in shows clear signs of wear and tear. All in all, he very much looks like a product of the streets.
Caw tends to keep his face hidden, but when one does catch a sight of it, they'll see large beady eyes staring right back at them. He has a tendency to rapidly tilt his head around when listening or curious, the way a bird would - a habit he cannot control.
Name: Caw's Notebook | Age: ~5 years | Size: Small | Weight: 02lbs
As he fled the wizard's dwelling, Caw tried to take the man's expansive spellbook with him for safekeeping. However, it was much too heavy to carry and make a successful escape with, so instead he opted to snatch a study book on magic and, more importantly his own notebook. It's a worn old thing that doesn't have any complete spells on it, but it has bits and pieces of invocations, as well as other notes he's made. Perhaps not the most useful, but certainly holds sentimental value.
Main Mood: Cautious | Fave Food: Berries | Pet Peeve: Being taken for a fool | Style of Battle: Sneaky, careful
Caw isn't very talkative, owning to his "condition". However, that doesn't mean he's a recluse who's unwilling to socialize. On the contrary, he rather enjoys the company of people and even talking to them - he just hesitates to be the one to initiate small talk. Now, bring up the topic of magic or an urgent issue at hand, and he will do his best to contribute. He also has a tendency to mimic people or their manner of speech if he's been around with them long enough. Up until now, he's mostly been around illiterate folk; petty thieves and dimwitted minions. As such, even though the amount of reading he's done has left his writing eloquent and vocabulary extensive, he can only make rudimentary sentences with basic words, often with incorrect grammar. This tends to leave people thinking he's stupid, a fact that irritates him to no end. With that said, he does have a few more sophisticated phrases he picked up from the wizard. His invocations were always Caw's favorites to listen to.
Having attempted to turn a new leaf and leave behind his life of crime, Caw strives to do the right thing where able. However, being the craven sort, he does put preserving his own hide before anyone else's, and will flee if things get too dangerous. He also suffers from bouts of kleptomania, so used to picking pockets that sometimes his hand quite literally slips. He is a follower at heart though, having been one his entire life, so being told not to do something is an effective deterrent, at least for a time. If able, he does try to return the things he steals as well - unless the fellows he took from were the bad sort. Then it was just karma.
Finally, though he's read a lot about the world from the wizard's books, he lacks real experience in many aspects of life. He only got to see a limited portion of the world before he was taken in by the wizard and kept behind mostly closed doors, and the traveling he's done since hasn't been very vast yet. He's curious at heart, even if he is careful and cautious in his approach, and nowadays writes down his discoveries on the leftover pages of his book. A diary, if you will.
Born in the shadier parts of a small port town, it was only a matter of time before Caw ended up the newest recruit to an ill-reputable flock. An uncreative lot, their schemes were not very intricate, and for years they only found success in petty theft. They stayed afloat much thanks to their Master, an old and elusive Kenku with a good head on his shoulders. So when he passed away at the ripe old age of 57, the flock crumbled soon after; led by someone much younger and more reckless, they ended up following overheard plans of a heist and finding themselves severely outmatched. Some lived, some died, yet others slunk to the shadows and vanished.
Caw lived to tell the tale, but the bliss of survival was short-lived. Kenku were not creatures that thrived on their own - especially not ones as craven as Caw. So, scared, alone, and in need of a new home, he traversed the lands in search for a place to belong. Who found who is a debate for another time, but Caw did eventually end up on the receiving end of an offer he could not refuse. An elderly wizard with a dark beard and darker yet gaze was in need of an extra pair of hands, and had no real use for wit. From his demeanor alone, there was no mistaking him for a friendly fellow, but Caw was no stranger to the wrong side of law. And so, he found a new Master.
From then on he worked as the wizard's underling, doing various little tasks for the man. These included relying messages, making counterfeits, occasionally memorizing voices and, perhaps most importantly of all, copying spells from stolen tomes into the wizard's own, expansive book. It was tedious work that few wanted and fewer yet could complete on the level of perfection a Kenku could. It was no matter to the old wizard that Caw had access to his spells; he thought the bird as dim as a cave, and his head as hollow to boot. He was wrong. Though not very eloquent and definitely not charismatic, Caw had a knack for remembering things. He spent most of his time in the wizard's library, and once his tasks for the day were complete, he studied up on a variety of topics.
However, well-read as he soon was, his pool of memorized phrases remained rather limited. He didn't hear much speech during his days, only the occasional word or two from other minions, or the wizard reading out loud his spells. As such, since most of the auditory input he received for days on end were spells, he often found himself awake at night in his tower, gazing out at the night sky and muttering out loud invocations he'd heard. His words did nothing as far as magic went, but they brought him some form of ease. Somehow, the topic of magic in general did. After all, he'd seen spells like Levitate and Transmutation, and heard of magical boots and brooms that took their uses to the clouds. Eventually, it made him wonder... maybe if he were to learn magic, perhaps one day he could learn to fly as naturally as any bird and take to the skies. He wondered if his Master already could; to Caw, the man seemed able to do anything.
He'd soon be proven wrong. Before Caw could properly start to realize his dream of studying magic, his Master met his end in the hands of adventurers who had come to end his reign. His minions either fled, fought or died, and after gathering what little he could, Caw made sure he was among the former. Nimble and small compared to most, he managed to slip away unharmed - physically, at least. Mentally, he was distraught and once more, alone.
Kenku were not creative, but they were not stupid, either - and after losing his home twice due to the bad deeds committed by his Masters and companions, Caw started to wonder if the life of crime was really worth it. He was not bad at heart, and felt no particular attachment to misdeeds or hatred towards other beings. It was just that... following orders was the only thing he knew, and picking pockets was second nature to him. What other work was there for a Kenku?
He pondered on that, but as one would expect, could not come up with an answer - until his wandering hands came to pick the wrong pocket. Or the right one, as the case may be.
How did Caw meet Sebastian?
Quite unceremoniously, to say the least.
It was barely past noon, yet Caw felt ready to collapse. He'd spent the last few days on the road, inserting himself into the company of caravans, adventurers and traveling merchants - anyone that could provide him the safety of a flock, even if only temporarily. As intriguing as the world at large was to the kenku, he wasn't stupid enough to think he could travel its roads alone. He was an easy picking to any cutthroat, madman... or a large feline. He'd heard those were a thing, too, and supposedly cats loved to hunt birds, even the flightless ones on two legs. Or that's what the wizard had said, anyhow.
Anyway, arriving to a town had brought him but temporary respite. He might've been safe from the dangers of the road, but the biggest threat to his life remained; hunger. His stomach felt like a bottomless pit, sucking every ounce of energy he had. He hadn't eaten in days, and had not a penny to his name. It was painful to see the stalls of a local market overflowing with produce and smelling the various scents that wafted to his beak. So painful that, despite himself, Caw eventually found his steps taking him closer and closer to the crowd.
He hadn't planned to steal. But when the local breadmaker had diverted his attention to a nearby group of children, Caw's hands had moved on their own. And with the success of that behind him, he'd soon found himself mimicking a dog to startle a man that sold meat - and the sound of a dropped coin to entice a careless peruser to look at her feet, away from the pouch on her hip. It was a cycle that, though initially born of need, continued out of habit.
Until Caw's fingers pulled out the coin pouch of a man clad in blue and black. Unlike the many others he'd stolen from that day, this one did not continue to walk away. This one turned around, expression stern.
"What do you think you're doing?"
He stared up at the man, at a loss for words - for many a reason. It had been a while since he'd talked, and all the words he knew floated in his conscious in a jumbled mess that he could not make any sense out of. So, instead, he opted to mimic a sound he knew very well.
The sound of a rumbling stomach.
"Food," he finally managed, his voice ten times older than he was; the voice of a beggar man taking his last breath, a sight he'd witnessed in the last town over. "N-need... food."
"Even more of it?" the man questioned, gesturing towards the marketplace proper. "I think you've had quite enough."
Realization was a stone in the bird's stomach. Had the-- had the man seen him steal earlier? Who... was he?
"Keep," Caw hurried to say, offering back what he'd stolen from him. The panicked words he spoke were a cacophony of voices, all perfect copies of someone, somewhere. "Keep coin. Caw-- no need. Just let Caw go. Please."
The man said nothing, but Caw could tell he was contemplating something. The bird's eyes fell to the man's sword. How fast was the other at drawing that thing? Could he draw his rapier first? Would it make any matter if he could? He was not adept at wielding it.
As if reading his mind, the man's hand moved, brushing past the sword in question. Caw's reaction was immediate. Dropping the coin pouch on the spot, he yanked himself backwards. In an instant he produced a dagger from within his robe, holding it at ready as if it were a shield.
"You're quick." It sounded more like an observation than a compliment. The man proceeded to pick up the coin pouch Caw had dropped, then turned back to look at the kenku. "If you're in need of coin, I may have a job for you."
Caw's head turned into an involuntary series of tilts from side to side, and the clink of a coin escaped his beak. The man entertained a small smile - barely there, yet somehow reassuring.
"Yes, coin. What say you?"
Caw wasn't sure if it was a question or an order, considering the situation - but he truly could give only one kind of answer.
He lowered his dagger and nodded, offering the human familiar words, and more familiar yet voice: "In need of coin."
Features & Traits
Expert Forgery - You can duplicate other creatures' handwriting and craftwork. You have advantage on all checks made to produce forgeries or duplicates of existing objects.
Mimicry - You can mimic sounds you have heard, including voices. A creature that hears the sounds you make can tell they are imitations with a successful Wisdom (Insight) check opposed by your Charisma (Deception) check.
Kenku Training - You are proficient in your choice of two of the following skills: Acrobatics, Deception, Stealth, and Sleight of Hand.
Library Access - Though others must often endure extensive interviews and significant fees to gain access to even the most common archives in your library, you have free and easy access to the majority of the library, though it might also have repositories of lore that are too valuable, magical, or secret to permit anyone immediate access.
You have a working knowledge of your cloister's personnel and bureaucracy, and you know how to navigate those connections with some ease.
Additionally, you are likely to gain preferential treatment at other libraries across the Realms, as professional courtesy shown to a fellow scholar.
Expertise - At 1st level, choose two of your skill proficiencies, or one of your skill proficiencies and your proficiency with thieves' tools. Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses either of the chosen proficiencies.
Sneak Attack - Once per turn, you can deal extra 1d6 damage to one creature you hit with an attack if you have advantage on the attack roll. The attack must use a finesse or a ranged weapon.
You don't need advantage on the attack roll if another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it, that enemy isn't incapacitated, and you don't have disadvantage on the attack roll.
The amount of the extra damage increases as you gain levels in this class, as shown in the Sneak Attack column of the Rogue table.
Thieves' Cant - During your rogue training you learned thieves' cant, a secret mix of dialect, jargon, and code that allows you to hide messages in seemingly normal conversation. Only another creature that knows thieves' cant understands such messages. It takes four times longer to convey such a message than it does to speak the same idea plainly.
In addition, you understand a set of secret signs and symbols used to convey short, simple messages, such as whether an area is dangerous or the territory of a thieves' guild, whether loot is nearby, or whether the people in an area are easy marks or will provide a safe house for thieves on the run.
Spell Save DC XX | Spell Attack Modifier +X | Max Spells Prepared X
Rules Surrounding your spells
Cantrip NameConcentration Verbal Somatic Material (material component), range, duration. Effect.
Spell NameConcentration Verbal Somatic Material (material component), range, duration. Effect.
Since a lot of the choices so far seem to include +Str/Weapons, will probably go with a magical user. Was thinking Death or Devil for either ailment or curse related shenanigans - I've got an idea for a character for either one. Curious about the effects of luck as well (yay gambling) so Fortune is also intriguing.
Though, just to be sure, what does this part mean? Does it mean that for example... for Agi, instead of spending 5 SP, they may choose to spend 1 MF or 1 HP instead?
may cast magic spells for the MF/HP equivalent to the tier instead of SP
Anyone planning on having heal (and/or buff) stuff btw? Since Chariot, Death, Devil and Fortune cannot use heals.