Dragon Age: Reformations
City Elf Rogue, wrapped up in a dogskin coat
Sergeant Helain hated that damned knife ears more than anything else in the world. The Dogman always had that same grin fixed on his face, though maybe it was less a grin and more a baring of his teeth. She had always found it a grotesque display, the tapestry of broken teeth, an ugly, face-splitting scar, and the ugly lump of hardened tissue with a hole that passed for an ear on the left side of his face.
The elf idly scratched his head, his fingers plucking a flea from his short cut, nearly shaved, head. As the snow began to fall, he pulled up the hood of the dogskin coat he wore over his boiled leather cuirass and inordinate number of knives over his head.
His damned dogskin coat, Helain thought to herself. Was a proper disrespect to man’s best friend. No, it was a desecration.
The coat was probably the single most identifiable feature of the Dogman. You couldn’t always see his face, but you could always spot, or smell, his coat. It was a poorly made, patchwork affair, clearly stitched together with little particular skill the Dogman. More than once she’d watched with disgust as the Dogman set about skinning a dead mabari, replacing old parts of his coat with fresh fur. The rest of the Red Hand didn’t mind that much, but she wasn’t a foreign heathen Rivani, Avvar, or Tevinter like the rest of the company. She was a Ferelden, through and through.
If it were up to him, she’d have hung the knife ears, but the Strategos liked the Dogman, and frankly, the scars around the Dogman’s neck told him the elf had survived that once already.
It wasn’t the dogskin that made Helain hate the Dogman. It wasn’t the fact that he was one of the best scouts in her company and had saved her life more than a few times, a fact that infuriated her greatly. Deep down, Sergeant Helain knew that she hated the Dogman because she saw that in the elf’s dress, obsequious manners, and the way he took being treated like shit with that damn grin, he was making a mock of them. You couldn’t beat him. Anything you did just made you smaller. He walked around like he was the King Cailan himself and nobody could make him do otherwise.
A Rough Outline of the life and death of Pyrlig Tabris, and the life of the Dogman
10 Kingsway – Pyrlig Tabris is born to Feyn, a butcher, and Scatha, an serving girl, in the Highever Alienage.
12 Solace – Feyn Tabris is hung for stealing a pig. Scatha Tabris, consumed by hatred and grief, leaves Pyrlig in the company of Othel, a trusted friend and assistant to the Hahren, and his family, in hopes that Pyrlig might become a scholar or Hahren one day.
4 Bloomingtide – After six years of theft and murder, Scatha is caught by the Highever City Watch and hung.
Kingsway – Pyrlig begins his life of crime, joining a band of thieving urchins and abandoning his lessons. Othel’s children, Soris and Shianni, join him, along with Pyrlig’s best friend, Byren.
Wintermarch – Pyrlig “graduates” from his street-urchin band into a proper Alienage gang. Quick and charismatic, Pyrlig rapidly moves up the ranks of the gang.
Haring – Pyrlig, growing bored and frustrated, decides to split from his gang to focus on righteous crimes, punishing and robbing humans who wrong elves. The gang adopts the fashion of wearing dogskin coats, mocking the Ferelden love of dogs. Pyrlig Dogskin becomes a popular figure in the Alienage.
Drakonis – Pyrlig, enjoying the wealth and respect that have come with the riches he won during the past two years from his “righteous crimes” begins to target merchants and other wealthy targets who haven’t even wrong elves, justifying it as a kind of class struggle.
Justinian – Shianni and Byren begin to have a relationship. Pyrlig grows jealous, having always had feelings for Shianni even though she always saw him more as a brother or cousin.
August – Pyrlig is approached by the Iron Ring, a smuggling/thieves guild, who noted the elf’s efforts, to work as a smuggler. The Iron Ring pay Pyrlig a large sum to move narcotics through the Alienage into the city, as few in the Alienage would report Pyrlig to the Watch. Pyrlig and his Dogskins continue their thefts, but grow rich from smuggling.
24 Cloudreach – During a routine theft with Pyrlig and Soris, Byren dies. Some in the gang wonder if Pyrlig killed Byren, but the only witness, Soris, remains silent on the matter.
Solace – Pyrlig steps into Byren’s place with Shianni, crossing a line with Soris. Later, while drunk, Soris lets slip to an Iron Ring member that Pyrlig hesitated to help Byren over a wall while being chased by the watch, resulting in the other elf’s death.
Harvestmere – At the insistance of the Iron Ring and the advice of some of the Dogskins, Pyrlig permits the selling narcotics in the Alienage at low rates, having been convinced that it as a mercy for elves who will never be free to experience contentment sometimes. He grows even richer as addiction runs rampant in the Alienage. The Dogskins’ popularity plummets amongst many elves.
Firstfall – The Highever City Watch, investigating the influx of narcotics into the city, begin suspecting an Alienage connection.
8 Wintermarch – Soris is captured by the Watch and interrogated, but doesn’t crack.
15 Wintermarch – Pyrlig requests that the Iron Ring deal with the situation. The Iron Ring misinterprets this (or chooses to misinterpret the request) and has Soris killed in his cell. Pyrlig breaks ties with the Iron Ring in response, withholding the cut he owes them.
26 Wintermarch – The Iron Ring reports to the Watch that the elves are being the influx of narcotics.
27 Wintermarch – An Iron Ring agent explains to Shianni that Pyrlig was behind the deaths of both Byren, to remove a rival for love, and Soris, who knew his murderous secret.
28 Wintermarch – Shianni confronts Pyrlig as the Watch attack the Alienage. When his answers fail to satisfy her, she attacks him. Badly wounded, Pyrlig chooses to be taken by the Watch rather than be killed by Shianni.
Annum Wintersend – Pyrlig Tabris is hung.
14 Drakonis – A scarred elf calling himself “The Dogman” appears in Amaranthine and enlists with the Company of the Red Hand, a Free Cities-chartered mercenary company operating in Ferelden, primarily comprised of native Ferelden and Free Cityfolk, with a significant core of Avvar and Surface Dwarves, and a few notable exiled Tevinter. The Dogman quickly ingratiates himself with the company captain, a Tevinter named Constantinius, who enjoys and employes the Dogman’s cheerful amorality, quick tongue, and larcenous skills.
Eluviesta / Cloudreach to Frumentum / Harvestmere – The Avvar Campaign – The Company of the Red Hand is employed to push back Avvar from profitable routes to Orizammar. This degenerates into a lot of village burning and raids and counter-raids.
Ferventis / Justinian to Umbralis / Firstfall – The Dalish Campaign – The Company of the Red Hand is employed over the Frostbacks in Orlais to displace Dalish settlements near profitable woodlands the local lords wish to harvest.
Matrinalis / August – The Company of the Red Hand accepts a contract from the Grey Wardens to assist in fighting a possible blight. The Red Hand moves marches to Ostagar.