We’ve done a number of “Origin Story” comics over the years. That’s how we found out about Thief‘s pirate queen history, Team Bounty Hunter‘s boarding school days, and Pug‘s role as kobold tribal trap bait. Given our recent spate of new characters, however, we thought it might be a good idea to ask our Quest Givers over on Patreon which ones deserved a bit of backstory next. And so (with apologies to runners-up Ninja, Warlock, and Occultist) today marks the occasion of Van Helscion‘s debutante ball. Or at least, her first public comments on the sensitive subject.

Handbook-World reporters managed to get a few questions with the famously fashionable adventurer.

HoH: I understand it was intended to be a special occasion. Can you tell us about your hopes for that day?

Van Helscion: They were much the same as any young noble lady, I expect. I was to be introduced formally into society. Mummy and Daddy had spared no expense, what with the dueling harpsichordists and ice elemental sculptures. Delegations from every branch of Pinkskinnington nobility were in attendance. So was every minor war m’lord with a drop of Gildentusk blood to his credit. And there I was in the middle of it all, skinny young slip of a thing with a thoroughly ridiculous hair-do, just hoping not to embarrass myself in the cotillion.

HoH: But that dance never happened. When did you first suspect that something had gone wrong?

Van Helscion: The screams honestly should have given me pause. You must understand that I was very young then; very self-involved. I suppose I assumed that the traditional “great welcome” from the greener side of the family had got out of hand, as these things are wont to do. It wasn’t until Hildy failed to appear for my midafternoon corset-tightening that I realized something was amiss. As I hurried down to the hall, thinking to find the girl and scold her for idleness, everything was far quieter than it ought to have been. And that is when I first noticed the ghastly lapping sounds.

HoH: Lapping sounds?

Van Helscion: How should I describe it? Have you ever heard a long-haired lap smilodon eating caviar from the tin?

HoH: No. No I have not. 

Van Helscion: Well it was exactly like that. Loads of canines clacking against metal. I’m older and wiser now, and I can tell you that a gorget, no matter how finely polished, is a feeble defense against a determined vampire.

HoH: Or a vampire-werewolf. What was it like meeting your arch-nemesis? 

Van Helscion: Honestly? In the moment I was more concerned with my social standing. With my entire extended family dead in a sea of their own blood, I could hardly serve as the symbol of peace between feuding interracial nobility. It was a real blow to my self-image, I can tell you! Just like that, any chance at a proper intrigue campaign evaporated. Poof! Gone!

HoH: I see. So you decided to multiclass into vampire hunter in preparation for a more combat-heavy style of game?

Van Helscion: Of course not. I multiclassed vampire hunter to stake Gestalt. I am equal parts Elizabeth Swann and Wesley Snipes, and I have more than enough inheritance left to invest in silver-plated bitch stabbing implements.

Hmmm. Kind of lost the genteel demeanor there at the end. Anywhoodles, let us know if you’d like to see more cast interviews and fictional vignettes, or if you’d prefer to stick to the good old-fashioned gamer talk. And since we’ve got a pair of arch-nemeses on our hands, why don’t you tell us about yours? How did you meet your nemesis? Give us all the gory details of that first encounter with your hated rival down in the comments!


ARE YOU THE KIND OF DRAGON THAT HOARDS ART? Then you’ll want to check out the “Epic Hero” reward level on our Handbook of Heroes Patreon. Like the proper fire-breathing tyrant you are, you’ll get to demand a monthly offerings suited to your tastes! Submit a request, and you’ll have a personalized original art card to add to your hoard. Trust us. This is the sort of one-of-a-kind treasure suitable to a wyrm of your magnificence.