Mercenary Adventurer for Hire
Weight: 184 lbs
Muscular build with short cropped hair and extensive facial scarring
Born and raised in the heart of the Scarlet Brotherhood, Ardes suffered a great deal of discrimination and abuse because of his less than Suel features. It was purely through force of will and martial skill that he attracted the attention of a mentor, a woman who he only ever knew as “teacher.” Appropriate, perhaps, since she only called him “boy.” She trained Ardes to become a dangerous and brutal assassin, ordering him out on missions for the Brotherhood when they wanted to send a message to their enemies.
Despite his apparently impure blood, Ardes seemed to be on the fast track to becoming a vital member of the order. And then everything went wrong. He was 22 and to this day can’t remember what occurred, but he bears the scars on his face and the burning sensation of betrayal. Ardes was rescued by Sir Torvaldt, who happened upon the scene right before Teacher was going to deliver the fatal blow. It was only the kindness of a stranger and happenstance that he lived. Torvaldt helped nurse the young man through the painful recovering from his poisoned wounds and eventually took Ardes along on his endless and aimless journey across the Flanaess. Because of the poison used, Ardes’s scars have never healed properly despite the best and varied attempts of Tamra Welveren.
Eventually, Torvaldt retired and passed his prized greatsword, Lady, to the ex-monk who then began his own quest for understanding. Or at least for adventure. Whichever comes first.
Ardes looks every bit the seasoned warrior that he is. Being dour and stern faced combined with his rather graphic scars tends to attract attention — of the negative kid. He exudes infinite calm and is very difficult to rile up. Most things are taken in stride. Despite this, those who know him well would describe the man as being angry, though no one can put their finger on why since he very, very rarely shows any fit of temper. His only apparent hobby is sketching. He also seems to have an odd fascination with fire and might be a bit of a pyromaniac if the situation ever calls for. He despises cold weather and will start bundling up in heavy clothes starting in early fall. By winter, he’s generally covered head to toe and seemingly quite miserable.
Having learned common as a second language, Ardes occasionally struggles with colloquial phrases and has a slight, though obvious and odd, accent. He speaks as someone very well educated, but often takes his time finding the precise word to convey his meaning. He’s know to think heavily before he speaks. When under serious duress, he has been known on a few occasions to lapse into speaking Suel. He finds scholars who claim to speak the language slightly pretentious since they treat ancient Suel as being a “dead” language when the people of the Tilvanot use it in everyday life.
He dresses in dark shades of grey and carries the antique greatsword that was a gift from his dear friend, Sir Torvaldt. Though Ardes seems unconcerned about his rather rough appearance, he also has no qualms about donning his ever present scarf to hide his face when it is called for. He can often be found in Greyhawk City visiting with Torvaldt and Tamra when not off on a job. Though the neighbors adore the older couple, they tend to regard Ardes with a certain degree of trepidation and reluctant acceptance.
Not one to discuss his sordid past, Ardes prefers to keep his secrets to himself. Most people who discover his origins tend to react… poorly. Rather than trying to explain, he refers to his history in vague terms. Combined with his intimidating appearance, this trait generally leads to mistrust and makes it difficult for Ardes to make friends. He is also notoriously difficult to impress. Most people simply take that as some sort of stoic facade, but those who bother to press the issue sometimes find themselves “treated” to a horrific tale from his childhood that explains why a particular thing is either simply familiar or not nearly as bad in comparison.
Ardes does not believe in fate. Whenever a fortuneteller tries to tempt him into learning of his future, he always claims “I’d prefer to be surprised.” When questioned by a skeptical Bakluni client once, Ardes explained, “Fate implies that there is only one path, that there is no choice. But there is always a choice, though we don’t always see it. It is our vision that is narrow.” The monk is a strong advocate for personal choice and has been known to break his own rules of not interfering in personal lives to help younger folks pursue their dreams.