The Word Was the City, and the City Was God
Black-bearded, Dwarf, Rouge-Thief, Illiterate.
A rogue, and burglar, by trade, Oskar is usually clad in a mixture of black cloth, darkened leather, and matte metal. He stands at 4’ 9" and is considered tall, as far as Dwarves are concerned. His black beard extends roughly five inches and mainly sprouts from his chin, leaving his cheeks only mildly scruffy. Like many of Dwarvish blood, Oskar has a prominent nose and almost brutish-looking brow-line. His shale-grey eyes, eyes the color of stone, are accustomed to both the general darkness of mountain homes and the brightness of the sunned surface. He has a scar right below his left nipple, the remainder of the blow that killed him eras ago, the last impact of an elvish blade that he still remembers now being resurrected.
Oskar, although born into a normal clan of average standing, was anything but average. The standard Dwarf was expected to be of a multitude of jobs and abilities. Oskar was a troubled boy in early academia- claiming that the words moved if you stopped concentrating on them, he couldn’t write easily and he became frustrated with books and reading. Reading, as it so happens, is quite important to many aspects of Dwarf culture. One cannot be expected to be an exceptional stonemason if they can’t read the mathematics involved in shaping the innards of a mountain. Similarly, one can’t be expected to be able to invent and further the potential of Dwarven machinations or artificery if they can’t read and comprehend the accomplishments of their predecessors. And so, Oskar was quite limited as to what was expected of him. You see, for mountain Dwarves, honor is not only for the self- but for the clan, and as such your choice of career was directly proportionate to your importance to the clan and their subsequent gain of prestige within Dwarven society. Oskar was, for quite a few years of his adolescence and young adulthood, ostracized for his lack of ability to contribute to the clan’s prestige. through these years, oskar ventured out into the deep of the Spine of the World, he learned how to be quite, and how to use the darkest parts of a shadow to hide from things that could see in the perpetual night of the deep caves. Dwarves were almost inherently good with their hands, as displayed in their carvings, structures, and machinery- but Oskar quickly learned that his innate tactile dexterity also afforded him quite an edge in picking locks. He emerged from the deep caves on his 20th birthday and left the mountains to seek employment. He eventually joined a small mercenary group, The Last Lanterns. It was with this group that his skills with crossbows grew and his ability to sneak and gain entrance to seemingly impregnable areas became his expertise. Eventually, the Last Lanterns and many other mercenary outfits were hired en masse to augment military forces engaged with a warring elven kingdom near the Sea of Fallen Stars. For nearly two years his party engaged elves and psions and their hired or coerced army of zealots. Oskar lost several friends and gained an intense hatred for elves and a distrust of most non-human or dwarf species. It was in what seemed like the last push of the war, when the elven kingdom was in retreat, The Last Lanterns assaulted a fortress and sustained heavy casualties that included Oskar Shadhammer.
Oskar was roused from his restful nothingness and his spirit materialized again into a body that was as much his own as he could remember, hurried along a desert and suddenly back to life in a ratfolk warren. His mind felt diminished from his long sleep of death, his body felt weaker, but he was alive- but for what purpose?