Paulo Hasselhoff Profile

Posted: November 1, 1998 in Writing
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I was born about 115 years ago to Isiah and Miriel Greymantle, rich and sometimes underhanded Elven merchants from Chardonnay. The fifth son out of seven children, I was mostly ignored, or thought of as an inconvenience until I turned 100 — my “coming of age”, as it is stipulated in some cultures. Then I was to assume ownership and the position of manager of one of Father’s companies.

During my youth, I was fortunate to win the friendship of one of the groundskeepers; he was Cormac Mac Cain, a Scout of no little accomplishment, and it was he who first taught me of the worlds of adventure that lie around the slightest bend in the road and glimmer softly in the light on the edge of the horizon. Due to his influence, I have come to this point in my life, and I wouldn’t change a thing. It was with him that I was caught carousing in the Queasy Centipede pub along the mighty docks of Chardonnay.

Due to my perceived “slumming”, I was confined to the estate grounds (yes I came from the nobility) and sentenced to reading every book in my father’s extensive library. He, however, agreed to release me from my confinement as soon as I read every book, a possibility he obviously thought to be a task that would take nearly forever. 2600+ volumes and five years later, I was tested by every person in the house on the contents of the library. Each person had to ask me one question; I answered every one correctly, such was my quiet rage against my father and my prison.

The last question, unexpectedly, came from Cormac. He asked me what I wanted to do with my life, now that I was free of the house imprisonment. I smiled, knowing as well as he that most nights I had made a habit of slipping off of the grounds and returning to the Queasy Centipede or some other haven for adventurers and magicians, having my own quasi-adventures in the early morning town streets and dashing from shadow to shadow to escape the guards of my father’s land. Confidence and triumph passionately rushed to my lips, and I stated to my father and his household that I would sooner hang myself than manage my father’s company and would prefer a life of piracy and romance.

No sooner had my confinement ended than my father in one of his infamous bad moods sentenced me to my choice of a monastery or piano lessons. A difficult choice, but piano lessons it was; then there was the Stradivarius lessons and the fife lessons, the tympani and the harp, the lute and the harmonica, the accordian, saxophone and electrified bass guitar. For 27 years, the Greymantle house was filled with the sound of musical instruments — the same drive that caused me to read all of those books now turned me to music.

Once again, each person in the house was asked to request a tune from me, and I was charged to demonstrate each instrument at least once. Again, Cormac Mac Cain was the last request after a harrowing jam session; he requested me “…to plae that bonny sweet fiddle with the lyric you sang to me yestereve”.

The night before, I had sang him a song that I had written myself about a young Elf who runs off after his request to become a Knight of the Realm had been denied by his tyrannical father. Remembering my other show of bravado at the end of my Test, I glared angrily at Cormac, who had become my fast friend, and stated that I would not, due to the present company.

“Well then,” spoke my father, “Clear the room except for Paolo, Cormac and I.”

I played the song, and my shrewd father condemned me to another Herculean task: I was to take over his company now, before my coming of age on my 100th birthday, and to make sure it was successful. I bitterly asked if I could leave the house now, in order that I run his business more effectively. My sarcasm was met with disapproval, and I was grounded again until the full moon, a fortnight hence.

I spent my time rereading my favorite lyrical poetry and treatises, along with a few horrifyingly unsettling books I had just found on an almost forgotten shelf behind the fireplace: the blasphemous Necronomicon of the Mad Arab Abdul Al-hazred and “The Call of Cthulhu” by the Archmage Lovecraft. Perhaps these last few works unhinged me a bit, or possibly “great wits are to madness near allied / and thin partitions do their bounds divide” as an Elder Elf, Alexander Pope, once stated; yet as I was introduced to the company as the president under my father, a plan arose in my mind.

Fifteen minutes after my father had left in his splendiferous eight horse carriage, I was a free Elf, having sold the company to the highest bidder in the meeting space. I had 23,000 gold pieces worth of jewels in my rucksack, and boarded passage on the first ship I came to away from my father and my beloved home, Chardonnay.

On board the ship, I found myself comfortable with sea travel, and made myself useful to the Captain, a kind hearted Black man by the name of Mr. Placebo. He must have found me a hard and willing worker, for I was asked by him personally to remain abord the ship. I did so, and for several years, I travelled the seas from stem to stern with him aboard the good ship Brigit.

It was here that I learned the use of a good solid sabre and a well-aimed quarrel. Finally, after a scuffle with a shipload of seafaring Trolls, the captain and I were adrift in the wreck of the ship and I decided to strike out for land. We said our farewells and I ended up in the southerly port of Gronk in the realm of Orkland (no, not Oakland). Travelling north after a less-than-welcome reception, being an Elf in Orkland, I walked into a tavern in the hamlet of Gnatspit, and the kind owner, Mr. Rumble, a most learned and considerate half-Ogre, had lost his entertainment for the night. He had been killed in an earlier bar brawl by a carelessly thrown battleaxe from Stonehold Ironfist the Rabid Chaos Dwarf. I volunteered to take his place, and ended up entertaining for several years at Rumble’s Tavern.

Rumble has, after hearing many a telling of my tale in song and in conversation, suggested that I follow my original dreams of becoming an adventurer. He also has charged me with bringing back enough entertaining stories to regale his bar patrons. During my employment at Rumble’s Tavern, I had the delightful opportunity to associate myself with one unique Frogg, who has invited me to this new Land, promising adventure, exploration and intrigue…and maybe a few pretty ladies!

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