As a young gnome Gruffs was born into the city. He was especially short, even for a gnome. As such, he often sought out attention while in his first half century. This led him to the unusual gnomish choice of becoming a shaman. For he wished to have a large spirit companion to make up for his small stature. That is what he got, having a spirit companion which takes the form of a large (Just topping 9 ft, over 3 times Gruffs’s height) bear. After learning this secret, Gruffs rushed off to adventure, only to learn that being noticed was a poor way to survive as a gnome. IN returning to the city, barely alive, he found a living becoming a street performer, having his spirit bear dance for trinkets so Gruffs could buy food. This is still his occupation (until adventuring). It has taught him how to pick out people’s wants nearly immediately, and also taught him the benefits of watching the pavement for loose change. He has become world weary, and is often consulted in the gnomish community for the sake of teaching children what standing out does for a gnome. This has led to Gruff being rather cynical, but able to put on an appearance of ease and bliss.
My Bear Totem Story
When I first became a shaman, and went adventuring, there was an old enchanter who called himself Zeus (although he just looked like an old orc with a fake white beard. He was an odd creature). Upon seeing me doing so poorly just using my spirit companion to catch salmon for dinner (for the fish kept jumping at me, nearly drowning me), he thought it would be funny to carve out a totem which resembled an old bear (with a beard. This orc had a weird obsession with them. He made me get a fake one while journeying with him.) He then enchanted my totem. I never again had problems catching salmon, but it did not seem to help much when I brashly rushed in to kill a bunch of rabbits. This gave Zeus much amusement. I have since learned a lot about using this totem and fighting (for not everyone is so kind to street performers with spirit companions). We then found a small campout of goblins in a cave while Zeus was teaching me how to live in the wild. I rushed them (since they were drinking dwarven ale, bringing back bad childhood memories of other gnomes), and they proceeded to give me a sound beating. Zeus heard me cry in fear (for they were going to slit my throat, and my spirit companion was still young, untrained, and not much of a fighter) and rushed in. Being old, he told me to GTFO, and I ran, assuming he was strong enough to take some drunk goblins, him being my master and all. Alas, they lit his beard on fire and sent him running after me. Zeus loved his beard so much, that when he caught up to me he was still wearing it, although his ears were now on fire due to it. He soon died of burn wounds.
Mannerisms and Appearance
He dresses in whatever he can find, and tries to make all his clothes last as long as possible. Without his spirit companion at his side, he is often very shy and seems to disappear, but when a large, translucent bear is next to him, he can be just as charming and easygoing as a whore on a street corner trying to attract business. This is until evening (or until he gets fed up), when he just hides in the spirit and finds a bed and a small glass of mead (NOT dwarven ale).
Gruffs holds a grudge against the ruling monarchy in the city for “not giving a rats ass” for the lowest in society.
None of your business (unless you are the DM, in which case you already know). Remind me to post this hear when the party finds out.