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Servant

You are (or were) the personal servant to someone with wealth and power. How wealthy and how powerful they are might be relative, but in any case, they are wealthier and more powerful than you, as you are bound to serve them by employment or other obligation. The duties you perform for those you serve may or may not be to your liking, but in any case, when you are on errands and tasks for your masters, those who know whom you serve might be more inclined to stand aside and leave you be or even assist you from time to time in order to curry favor.

Skill Proficiencies: Your choice of either Stealth or Performance and your choice of either Insight or Sleight of Hand

Languages: Two of your choice

Equipment: A piece of jewelry worth 2 gp, a copper mug, a set of fine or common clothes, and a pouch containing 10 gp.

Feature: Important Errands

As you are in the service to someone with some degree of wealth and power, it is possible that the reputation of your master is known somewhat publicly. When you encounter people who know and respect or fear your master, if you are able to convince them that you are on official business for that person, there is a good chance that those people will leave you to your errands unmolested, so as to avoid the ire of your master. In some cases, certain individuals might even go so far as to help you with your task in an attempt to curry favor with your master. This might even work if you no longer serve your erstwhile master, so long as you can make people believe that you are actually still in their employ. The specific effects of this feature are at the GM’s discretion on a case by case basis, but the GM is encouraged to provide an appropriate range of responses depending on the situations so that this feature is appropriately useful.

Fleshing Things Out

Some questions to consider when determining how this background applies to your character: Are you currently in service to someone or something? If so, who are they? If not, whom have you served previously? What kind of servant were/are you? What function did you serve for your master?

How do/did you feel about those you served? Is being a servant something you resent, or do you enjoy it?

You should also consider what caused you to take up the role of an adventurer. Did your life as a servant lead you into a life of adventure? If so, what circumstances led to that? Or did you enter into service to someone somewhere along the line during your existing life of adventure?

d8 Personality Trait
1 I am very serious and don’t have much use for light-heartedness.
2 I seldom forget a face or a name.
3 I prefer to watch and listen rather than speaking.
4 I would sooner die than forgive or forget a debt.
5 Style is more important than substance.
6 I value deeds far more than I value words.
7 I don’t trust anyone who is selling something.
8 I love numbers and meticulously tracking things.
d6 Ideal
1 Hierarchy. Everyone has their place in society. (Lawful)
2 Ambition. Serve while you must until you can supplant your master. (Evil)
3 Service. It is through service to others that we better ourselves. (Good)
4 Practicality. Make a living however you can; there is no shame in that. (Neutral)
5 Contentedness. There is a certain freedom when you aren’t the one responsible for making decisions. (Chaotic)
6 Perspective. Everyone is a servant to someone or something. (Any)
d6 Bond
1 I come from a long line of servants, and we have always served the same family.
2 I was forced into servitude to avoid a worse punishment for a crime I committed.
3 I opted to become a servant rather than suffer the punishment for a false accusation against me.
4 I became a servant just to get close to someone I loved from afar.
5 I became a servant to get close to a particular person so that I could more easily ruin them.
6 I take great joy in knowing that others are better off as a result of my hard work.
d6 Flaw
1 I am terrible at keeping track of time.
2 I habitually embellish my stories and sometimes blatantly lie.
3 Intoxicants are the only things that give me relief from the stress of living.
4 I never take responsibility for any problems, even if they are legitimately my fault.
5 I take credit for other people’s work.
6 I am certain that I am the best at what I do, despite any evidence to the contrary.
Section 15: Copyright Notice

The Big Book of Backgrounds Copyright 2019, P.B. Publishing, Phil Beckwith, and Cody Faulk.