Lo, there do I see my father
Lo, there do I see my mother and my sisters and my brothers
Lo, there do I see the line of my people back to the beginning
Lo, they do call to me
They bid me take my place among them in the Halls of Valhalla
Where the brave may live forever....
Val CHA Cost Roll Notes 10 STR 0 11- Lift 100 kg; 2d6 HTH Damage  14 DEX 12 12- OCV: 5/DCV: 5 13 CON 6 12- 10 BODY 0 11- 14 INT 4 12- PER Roll 12- 11 EGO 2 11- ECV: 4 12 PRE 2 11- PRE Attack: 2d6 10 COM 0 11- 3 PD 1 Total: 3 PD (0 rPD) 3 ED 0 Total: 3 ED (0 rED) 3 SPD 6 Phases: 4, 8, 12 5 REC 0 26 END 0 22 STUN 0 Total Characteristics Cost: 33 Movement: Running: 6"/12" Leaping: 2"/4" Swimming: 2"/4" Cost Powers & Skills Skills 2 +1 OCV with scimitar 2 CK: Baghdad 11- 1 CuK: Northmen/Viking Society 8- 3 High Society 11- 2 KS: Arabic/Islamic Poems And Stories 11- 0 Language: Arabic (Classical) (idiomatic; literate) 1 Language: Latin (basic conversation) 2 Language: Norwegian (fluent conversation) 3 Oratory 11- 1 PS: Calligraphy 8- 2 PS: Poet 11- 5 Riding 13- 0 TF: Equines 1 WF: Blades Total Powers & Skill Cost: 25 Total Cost: 58 25+ Disadvantages 0 Normal Characteristic Maxima 20 Psychological Limitation: Devout Muslim (Very Common, Strong) 10 Psychological Limitation: Fear Of Heights (Uncommon, Strong) 5 Social Limitation: Minority/Outsider (Arab in Norse society (Occasionally, Minor) 60 Total Disadvantage Points
Background/History: A poet and courtier in the city of Baghdad, Ahmad ibn Fadlan makes the mistake of allowing himself to be seduced by the beautiful wife of a jealous and influential man of the court. In return, the man speaks with the Caliph, who then orders Ahmad ibn Fadlan to go north, as an ambassador, and speak with the peoples he finds there. Ahmad ibn Fadlan, accompanied only by on old friend, does so, and eventually ends up in the camp of Northmen. There he learns the local king has died, and a new one is to be chosen, in the process witnessing one of the last of the classic Viking funerals. Soon after, a boy enters the same camp, asking for aid to help his lands, which are under attack by a strange, almost supernatural force. A wise woman comes forward and tosses sticks, stones, bones, and shells to read what the future will hold. She then makes the following proclamation: thirteen men must go forth to face this threat. Twelve are to be Northmen, but the thirteenth must be a foreigner. The thirteenth warrior must be Ahmad ibn Fadlan.
So begins Ahmad ibn Fadlan's journey among the strange and barbaric people of the Northlands, where he will encounter mockery of his size, strength, and his horse. Where he will see death in many forms, come face-to-face with the monsters of the mist, and discover depths of courage he never knew he had. And when done, he will draw the sounds of the story of Buliwyf and his twelve warriors and their battles against the Wendol, that they may be remembered.
Personality/Motivation: Initially, when first met, Ahmad ibn Fadlan is contemptuous of the Northmen and their ways, having the attitude that Islamic culture is superior to all others. He finds the Northmen to be crude, rough, and unsanitary in their habits. As time passes and he grows more used to their ways, he also becomes more inured to their habits. For example, he drinks mead, which made from honey, is acceptable for a Muslim to drink (Islam only bans drink made from grapes or grain). He allows cow urine to be placed on his wounds, joins in the Northmen prayer before battle (Lo, there I see my father....), and even spends the night with a Northern slave/serving girl. He also goes from seeing the Northmen from uncouth savages to fellow human beings, albeit with different beliefs.
Quote: "Merciful Father, I have squandered my days with plans of many things. This was not among them. But at this moment, I beg only to live the next few minutes well. For all we ought to have thought, and have not thought; all we ought to have said, and have not said; all we ought to have done, and have not done; I pray thee God for forgiveness."
Powers/Tactics: Ahmad ibn Fadlan is not a fighter, but a poet, although he does show familiarity with the scimitar, and is skilled with its use. He also is an excellent horseman, and can vault low fences and gates while astride his horse. In combat, he tries his best to not get hit, and will usually Block an attack and then try and strike (unless attacking from ambush or surprise).
Appearance: Of average height and slight build, Ahmad ibn Fadlan appears to be a typical Arab with no special distinguishing features. He dresses in typical Arabic fashions, although he does adopt some Nordic dress (mainly armor) while spending time among the Northmen.
Designer's Notes: Ahmad ibn al-'Abbäs ibn Rashïd ibn Hammad ibn Fadlan is a real person, a Muslim who was sent by Abbasid Caliph al-Muqtadir as an ambassador to the king of the Volga Bulgars. He left Baghdad in June of 921 and arrived at his destination in May of 922. He wrote an account of his travels, and this is thought to be one of the earliest written descriptions and observations of the "Rus," or Varangians (a.k.a., the Vikings). Michael Crichton adapted parts of Ahmad ibn Fadlan's manuscript for this novel Eaters Of The Dead, which was his "pre-telling" of the events that led to the creation of the epic poem Beowulf. Eaters Of The Dead was then turned into the film The 13th Warrior, which I personally like a great deal, finding it a fine "historical fantasy" film in the same vein as Brotherhood of the Wolf. This character sheet borrows elements of Ahmad ibn Fadlan's character from both novel and movie, and blends them together. Emphasis has been given to the movie Ibn Fadlan, as this was the more "cinematic" representation.
(Ahmad Ibn Fahdlan created by Michael Crichton, character sheet created by Michael Surbrook)