Garrick Newgate is a Human; He is Captain of the guard that defends Applewood.
Having just turn 24, Garrick is very young for his position. He stands tall at 6' 3" and has broad shoulders. His Brown hair is close kept, and his face clean shaven.
Garrick has been with the guard since he was a young boy. His father, Landon, was a guardsman, but had to stop due to an injury. When Garrick showed interest, Landon happily began teaching his son the basics of hand to hand combat. The boy learned quickly, and then began showing interests in more martial concerns.
He learned to fence, but his father was quickly not up to the task, so he trained with Neville Sommers, the former Captain of the Guard. He learned one on one combat from Sommers, who happily taught Garrick as a favor to Landon. Both Landon and Sommers were quite impressed with the boy's forethought in combat.
Garrick often caught his elder by surprise, but never succeeded in his attempts to disarm, trip, or knock prone his teacher. Sommers was impressed nonetheless, and began asking members of the guard to spar and practice with the boy, now a teenager. Many of the guard will happily admit that Garrick disarmed them, frequently within moments of a match. They will embarrassingly admit that he seated them more than once.
This made Garrick happy, but his father saw greater potential, and asked another friend for help. Nathan Nettles, a halfling in town, came to meet Garrick on his 15th birthday. Nettles, his father explained, was an assassin in the last war. He was as deadly as a plague, and much more efficient. They met, and Landon explained to his son, that Nettles would be trying to kill him.
This was for show, but Nettles did break in time and time again. His first attack, Garrick woke with a dagger at his throat. "Dead" was all Nettles said before disappearing through the window. After the first fight, Nettles began showing up in odd places, and "attacking" in ways ranging from assassination attacks, Darts, Poison, jumping from the shadows, and even attacking the boy at home in bed.
This training tuned Garrick to the point where surprise meant little. He grew adept in fighting dirty, often with no weapon or shield. He learned to detect poisons in his food, and to know when to trust others. This came in handy when war came.
The Bugbears of Talon Mountain sent in small raids a few times a year for supplies. The year of Garrick's 17th birthday, it was different. They attacked at night and killed mercilessly. The horn of Applewood sounded, and the guard assembled. The fight made it past the walls, and into town despite their efforts. Goblin invaders bolstered their ranks, and they attacked from the shadows killing with prejudice. Nettles, Landon, and Sommers were some of the first into the fray. Landon was not fit to fight, but sat on the wall raining arrows down on his enemies. Nettles darted in and out of the creatures, cutting tendons and slicing throats before the enemy knew he was there. Sommers lead the garrison of fighters into the foray.
Sommers was the first to fall. An arrow through the neck. For a moment, all seemed lost, but then, Garrick appeared. Standing next to men he had bested in combat for many years, though they were older, he stood wearing his father's armor, and holding the heads of three goblins that had tried to ambush him. He took up Sommer's Shield, rallied the men, and back to fighting they went. Though many died that night, they ousted the creatures before daybreak.
Many years have past since that day, but he has been Captain of the Guard since that morning. His father died later that year. His mother still lives in town, and the guard respect him fervently. Nettles still remains, a dear friend to Garrick, and the official scout of the guard.
Garrick is a lighthearted fellow, who is always up for a challenge. Many an adventurer has visited Applewood and dueled Garrick, and no one can seem to remember him ever having lost a duel. He keeps his armor clean, and cares about the safety of his town above all else. He is confident in all things, but if you mention that his town may be in danger in any way, he becomes quite solemn, and considers the threat carefully. He is happy, but not foolish. He will prepare for any threat quickly, and quietly. He does not alarm the townsfolk unnecessarily.
He still gets attacked at random by Nettles, who is confident that one day he will thwart the imposing human.
He carries Sommer's Shield, though it has been repainted since. It is a relic he holds quite dear, along with Landon's longsword, left to him on the occasion of his father's death. He is never without these treasures, though he would be just as capable a fighter without them.
Garrick is a great person to get quests from. He wants the safety of his people above all else. He is well informed, and the adventurers should assume that he knows more than he lets on. (Having him mention something that they themselves keep secret is a great way to do this.) If a serious threat ever comes to Applewood, Garrick is there. If there is a threat greater than the others (Bosses etc...), Garrick is the first to volunteer.
For lower level adventurers, allow Garrick to take down the "Big Bad" if that threat comes to town, while the party takes care of side quests or reconnaissance. Once they are higher level, perhaps he recognizes their skills and asks him to join him in the "Big Bad" fight. Later, he will recognize that they are equipped to stop problems before they emerge. This allows the party to feel progression as they might leave Applewood. If they are only starting here, using him as a recurring NPC is a great way to let them know what is happening in the town.
When you need an NPC you don't have time to make one up on the Fly. A good storyteller has between 6 and 7 NPCs on standby that can breathe life into your campaign. Don't worry, Here is a weekly update for you to use!
Bag of Holding