Character Sheet Template:
Name: Bjorn Helgesson
A tall, comely youth with a high forehead and deeply set eyes; they are lively and intelligent. His mouth is a bit too smirky and his jaw is clean-shaven because he can't quite put on a decent beard yet. He wears his blonde hair loose but for a braided leather band to keep it out of his eyes. He is long-limbed and muscular in the shoulders from a youth of pulling the bow and other exercises that came with the education of a man in his station and then some. While he is usually dressed well in nicely woven fabrics, he is currently wearing stout wool and his father's armor, seeing that the old Jarl is dead and no longer needs it.
Bjorn is the son of Jarl Helge Geirsson and was raised wanting for little. While Denmark is not the richest of places, he always had home and hearth. As a boy, he took to hunting quickly as well as reading and writing -- while a Christian priest tried to convert Jarl Helge, it didn't take and the man was sent off after he became boring. Bjorn's instructor in the fighting arts was a man named Loker the Smiler, one of his father's more trusted veteran men, but he had the occasional foreign tutor to teach him things like Latin. His father was grooming him to be more than just a warrior, but a cunning trader, a man capable of assessing the value of things and keeping the lands safe and strong. By all accounts, he was considered a likely lad; he'd hunted elk and boar well and bravely and even took a bear once, but had not had the chance to actually fight in a battle against other men.
When the draugr started to rise, the Jarl tried to rally defenses, but quickly had to concede land as it was realized that these monsters made themselves from the dead they killed. The Jarl went out to lead a sortie, to try and rescue one of the villages, but he never made it back -- once bitten, he threw himself into a rage against his fate, and to his enemies, sending the huscarl, Loker the Smiler, back to his boy with his dying instructions; gather whom and what he could and hold Trelleborg.
Using his father's name in the missive, and understanding that this deception would anger those that owed loyalty to his father, Bjorn sent the word out that all those who could come should come. Then, as best he could with the household he had left, he set to fortifying the fort against the howling dead, these draugr.
As a Jarl's son, Bjorn wanted for nothing in his upbringing -- he knows he is intelligent, but he is sometimes not entirely patient with people. He thinks people will do as he say simply for what he is and he doesn't realize that trust and respect are earned. All the same, Trelleborg is his house, and he intends to hold it with everything he has. Much rides on a green boy, and deep down he knows that there are others vying for the title of Jarl. Now is not the time for politics, but not all will see that. Because he knows that some of those he is letting into the house are here to take it as their own, he distrusts and relies only on the counsel of those he knows he can rely upon, such as Loker the Smiler, or Freya the housewoman, who keeps the stores and manages the day to day affairs of the Jarl's keep. Others, these outsiders, are kept at an arm's distance, at least for the meantime.
- Animal Husbandry: Bjorn is good with horses, hounds and other belike.
- Archery: He knows other weapons, as the son of a Jarl, but he is most fond of the bow -- he has an instinctive sense of where to put the arrow.
- A hunter's eye: not merely for archery, which he's done since he was a child, but for spotting things in general.
- Cold and cunning: Bjorn has demonstrated a willingness to break the rules if he knows that he is right -- that is the reason why he sent out a call in his father's name to those who owed him loyalty. It was the right call, even if it probably ruffled feathers.
- Entitled: Bjorn grew up with a silver spoon in his mouth. He is not particularly enamored of the idea of giving it up.
- Mistrustful: Fully aware that others are out to claim Trelleborg as their own, Bjorn is concerned over his own back and those around him that he has not grown up around. He is in an awkward position here.
- Green: No two ways around it, Bjorn is inexperienced. He might have done well up to now, and given a few more years with his father in charge, he'd be ready to be the Jarl himself. But he's been thrust into it too early. People know that he's barely out of his boyhood, and it undermines him.
- Self bow: a 6" bow with a good supply of hunting arrows as well as the kind used to pierce armor. Not always viewed fondly by Scandinavians as a weapon of battle, but he can bring down birds with it. That suddenly makes the bow a useful thing indeed.
- Sword: His father's. Good steel, excellent balance, keen edge. He prefers a boarspear, however, because it keeps a draugr at arm's length, just like a charging boar.
- A very sharp seax that he uses for skinning and butchering animals.
- A mail byrnie.
- Very good boots, not local make.
- Stout wool. He has a lot of clothing here, because this hall was his home.
Relationships and Acquaintances:
- Loker the Smiler - Like an older brother, if a bastard one, Loker is one of the reasons Bjorn still has a hall at all or any say in how it is run; a strong red haired fellow with a bulbous nose and a considerable beard, he helped raise Bjorn and is accounted a very good warrior indeed -- to be a huscarl of the jarl, you have to be, after all. He is not the brightest man, but he is as reliable as it gets for Bjorn. Loker's the man that keeps Bjorn's back free of planted daggers.
- Freya the Housewoman - When Bjorn's mother died, this woman warmed the bed of the jarl and cared for his household affairs. She is the daughter of a thrall that was freed, and is thus free, but nonetheless stayed on in the master's house. She is entrusted with the domestic affairs of the hall, including who stays where and gets what.
- Alexander and Roxanna - A pair of very large dogs that belong to the jarl's family and are now Bjorn's. They are large, fierce beasts used to help hunt boar. The idea was to breed them, and this was a project that Jarl Helge held dearly in his heart, though this may well be an unrealistic expectation. However, they are good dogs all around. Bjorn, educated in Greek and Latin, read enough of Alexander the Great to give the dogs these names.
- Gunnar Fisker - Not knowing much of the man, Bjorn is inclined to wait and see who the man forms relations with, but also knowing that he needs men like Gunnar, Bjorn has given him a position of genuine respect in the hall, and is careful to make time for the man's advice. Gunnar is a shipbuilder, which means he has the necessary skills of carpentry to help maintain the fortifications they need to stay alive through the cruelty of this attack from the depths of Nifelheim itself. And, perhaps, as a man that has had his eyes opened to proof that there is more than just the world, he views Gunnar's maiming as prophetic -- perhaps he too has wisdom that he paid for with his eye. Perhaps that remaining eye can see them through this.
- Sigrid Ranulfsdottir - Bjorn is watching and waiting with Sigrid; she's Ragnar's wife, and he worries that she might well covet Trelleborg for her children, seeing as she might well be a relative -- there hasn't been time to figure these things out. He is careful to be courteous, but she's a reminder that if anything befalls him, if anyone decides to put a knife in him, Ragnar becomes the Jarl and Ragnar Ragnarsson, the eight year old one, becomes the next Jarl after that -- Bjorn is the one in the way of that ambition. Bjorn doesn't know if Sigrid is an honest woman or if she's one of those conniving sort of bitches one runs across that creates the strife in a household rather than stops it. She may well fuel Ragnar's ambitions, in which case, she's as dangerous as Ragnar is.
- Ragnar Ragnarsson - Bjorn views Ragnar as a mixed blessing, an experienced, capable man that is excellent in a fight, that brings along loyal warriors. He answered the call...when he thought it was his father. But the Jarldom is not always inherited, it can often fall into the hands of the capable if the man set to inherit is in some way unready, and Bjorn knows that Ragnar sees the main chance here. Bjorn, for his part, is set on proving himself strong enough to rule, but also doesn't wish to make the sort of mistake in that process that justifies a man like Ragnar taking over -- that means considering his position carefully. While he is not looking for a fight with Ragnar, he is wary of the man. He has a duty to Helge's wishes; he vowed to see them all through, not give up the Jarl's hold to the first strong fellow that comes knocking. All the same, they have to rely on each other, so Bjorn can't precisely pitch the man out (especially not after summoning the guy in the first place,) and he's not going to consider things like assassination, not with so few in the place to defend it and the fact that it's an indecent thing to do. In dealing with Ragnar, he tries to weigh consequences, such as how slight might be taken, and that tends to make him seem a little too deliberate in some things.
- Ragnar and Sigrid's Children - Bjorn isn't a bastard to them just because he worries about the parents.
- Vigi the Seidrmadr - Bjorn knows that this one is trouble, but because of who he is rather than ambitions or schemes. A Seidrmadr is bound to arouse certain prejudices and antipathies that could flare in the close confines these people are all forced into, but if the Seidrmadr can placate people or otherwise carry out some sort of role within the small community of those trying to survive the Draugr onslaught, the fellow is worth keeping around. In the end, however, what is right is that Bjorn is trying to save Trelleborg and fulfill the Jarl's role; that means facing down those that might decide it's best to throw the Seidrmadr to the jaws of the Draugr.