Fred Gelman

Fred Gelman might be the sanest native of Battling Business World. Born to a pious Russian Jewish family in Upper Manhattan, he was always a little different from the other kids. He loved to tinker with all his family’s appliances, and his improvements never made them explode. He was also a surprisingly strong and bright child. His parents encouraged the development of his talents. From an early age, though, they made it clear that he was to become a battling businessman. Gelman wasn’t too happy about this. After all, he preferred dealing with tools instead of numbers. He was an obedient boy, though, and conceded to his parents’ wishes.

Gelman attended Columbia University, pursuing his MBA and studying an esoteric form of Krav Maga. He also took as many technical courses as he could. Although he got laughed at by some of the other students, this turned out to be a good decision. Personal computers were becoming business tools. So were the sentient devices that resulted when people inevitably became frustrated with them. Mutual distrust and disrespect were common. Gelman, however, didn’t experience their suspicion. Newly mobile computers and cell phones flocked to him. In turn, Gelman felt sympathy for the confused but curious devices. He protected, maintained, and educated them. His affection even motivated him to specialize in procurement. Upgrades were expensive and procurement specialists learned the secrets of instant acquisition. Why shouldn’t he use his education to help out his friends?

After graduation, Gelman married his (phantasm) childhood sweetheart Sophie and entered the workforce. He was never particularly keen on the “battling” part of battling business. All he wanted was to work hard, go home, enjoy a kosher family dinner, study Torah, tinker with tech, and go to bed. Unfortunately, Gelman’s great strength and toughness, further enhanced by his martial arts training, meant his bosses often assigned him to block chokepoints. Other battling businesspeople teased him about befriending sentient devices. Sometimes he felt like his (non-sentient) BlackBerry was the only coworker he could trust. Worst of all, unlucky mishaps kept people from respecting him. Gelman still persevered thanks to patience and faith. He had one hope to maintain his sanity. Somewhere in New York City, there was a boss who wouldn’t treat him like a loon.

Gelman met that boss in front of a Manhattan electronics store. The latest processor had debuted, and he’d convinced a rabid group of sentient computers not to stampede the place for an upgrade. He’d even used his procurement powers to give copies to especially out-of-date individuals. Since he was on a rare lunch break, Gelman prepared to head back to work. Someone put a hand on his shoulder. He turned around and saw a distinguished, silver-bearded gentleman. Gelman knew of him: Peter Leland, an Atlanta native attempting to start a for-hire corporate raiding firm.

“You didn’t scrap them,” he said. His approving tone surprised and pleased Gelman. Therefore, when Leland invited him to a kosher deli after work, he accepted.

The two men discussed battling business for several hours. Gelman liked what he was hearing. Leland’s business plan was solid. He had no blatant or crippling eccentricities other than the opossum on his shoulder. Gelman had never seen someone so sane; even his beloved Sophie tended to faint at the slightest threat. Best of all, Leland was treating him like a rational and dignified human being.

Gelman was still cautious about joining a startup company. He asked for more documentation and meticulously studied it. He paid for background checks on Leland. He checked for rumors and researched them. Because he had no idea they were phantasms and would simply agree with him, he even asked his rabbi, wife, and kids what they thought. All the indicators pointed toward a positive result. Gelman soon submitted his two weeks’ notice and became Peter Leland’s first battling business partner.

That was ten years ago. Fred Gelman has enjoyed his time at Amarant Solutions. It hasn’t been all roses, though. Because of the recent company civil war, his beloved Procurement Department is a vassal of Accounting. His poor luck hasn’t gone away, he still gets on the front lines more than he likes, and that irresponsible punk Marty Tabard has finally pushed his last button. For once in his life, though, Gelman has respect from his boss. He even considers Leland a friend. If all goes well, he might even become the CEO when the man retires. And in the near future? Well, Tabard’s skull has a date with a shiny new chainsaw putter.

+1 ECL “Race”: Cartoonified (Toon) “Pureblood” Human (58 CP)
•Fast Learner/Specialized in Skills: +2 SP/Level (6 CP).
•+4 Intelligence (Normally 24 CP, reduced to 12 CP by world laws).
•+2 to any one attribute (normally 12 CP, reduced to 6 CP by world laws).
•Immunity/Aging (can expect to live almost indefinitely, uncommon / minor / major, 3 CP).
•Grant of Aid: May heal 1d8+5 damage OR 1d3 points of attribute damage OR one negative level once per three levels per day or part thereof, 6 CP), with both Regenerative options (6 CP) and +8 Bonus Uses (12 CP). In Core, this requires several hours per use unless the user spends a magic point.
•Extraordinary Returning (Specialized, Requires being “animated” with standard cel-based or 3D animation tools) (3 CP). Most toons are unaware that they have this ability. They have trouble thinking of themselves as creations. It would take a “mundane” friend thinking, “Hmm, that guy was a lot like a cartoon character. I wonder what happens if we base a cartoon on him?” for anyone to discover it.
•Innate Enchantment: All spells Personal Only: Rubber Fall (resembles Feather Fall, but you have to peel yourself off the ground, 1400 GP), Regenerate Light Wounds (1/Round, up to 20 points/level/day maximum, 1400 GP), Cure Light Wounds (1d8+1 1/level/day as needed, 1400 GP), Immortal Vigor I (+12 + 2x Con Mod HP, 1400 GP), and Void Sheathe (may store a single weapon in “nowhere” and pull it out as needed, half cost due to single weapon restriction, 350 GP). 5950 GP total, 7 CP.
•Template Disadvantages: Insane (most toons are blasé, even bored, in even the most dangerous and deadly situations, -3 CP). Gelman struggles against this trait more than the phantasms-and even his fellow ensouled.

Identifying Characteristics: Age 52, 6’0″, 135 lbs, rapidly thinning brown hair, dark brown eyes, sallow skin, spindly; on the BlackBerry so often it might as well be part of his ear.
Basic Appearance: Gelman is ridiculously frail-looking, and he always looks worried about something. He favors conservative three-piece suits. His most distinctive accessory is his BlackBerry belt case, armored and padded to protect his beloved smartphone from accidental sentience.
Personality: Fred Gelman has not led an easy life. As the only remotely sane native of a Toonworld, he knows his home realm is a morass of chaos and anarchy-and people mock him or worse for mentioning it! He’s become suspicious, reclusive, and pessimistic as a result. The love of his family, the respect of Leland, and the strength of his religious faith keep Gelman from slipping into total misanthropy, but his unluck makes keeping a positive attitude difficult. Recent events haven’t helped matters. Still, he remains a fundamentally good and moral person.

Available Character Points: Compulsive (religious), Dependent (access to information), and Unluck; Duties (works for Amarant Solutions, +2 CP/Level) and Restrictions (actually cares about the safety and feelings of sentient devices, +1 CP/Level), Total: 48 CP L1 Base + 175 = 223.

Basics (58 CP)
Attributes: Strength 18 (DR 4/-), Dexterity 12/+1, Constitution 14/+2 (2 magic points), Intelligence 20/+5, Wisdom 13/+1, and Charisma 12/+1 (2 free contacts). Rolled Attributes: 12, 12, 13, 14, 14, 15. +1 to Intelligence from L4 Improved Self-Development.
Saves: Fortitude +5 (15 CP) + 2 (Con) = +7, Reflex +2 (6 CP) + 1 (Dex) = +3, Will +3 (9 CP) + 1 (Wis) = +4.
Hit Dice: L1-7: d8x7, L2-7: d4x6 (28 CP). HP 61 + 16 (Con Mod) + 14 (Magic) = 91 HP, 75 in Core and nearby realms.
Free Languages: English (Native), Hebrew, Russian, Spanish, and Yiddish.

Combat Information (34 CP)
Proficiencies: All Simple Weapons and Economic Weapons (9 CP-2 from Dex = 7 CP) and Light Armor (3 CP).
Move: 30 ft.
Initiative: +3
BAB: +3 (18 CP); +2, Specialized, Only for melee combat (6 CP)
Armor Class: 10 (Base) + 1 (Dex) + 1 (Wis, per world rules) + 2 (light undercover shirt) + 4 (shield bonus) = 18. With Iron Skin active, Gelman’s AC increases to 22. Total damage and energy resistance 6/-, 10/- with Resist Pain active.

Usual Weapons
Battle golf clubs from Marty (+14 melee, 1d6+9 bludgeoning (cutting if chainsaw head), 20/x2)
Unarmed (+15 melee, 1d10+9 bludgeoning, 20/x2). Gelman is perfectly capable of nonlethal unarmed strikes, and will use this option unless he’s facing a raid target or provoked beyond even his self-control.

Usual Gadgets: As a Battling Business World procurement man, Gelman can have anything that he could carry. His Gadgetry trait represents his favorite pieces of tech: his app-loaded BlackBerry, his PDA, his high-end laptop computer, and an assortment of portable tools for his technical skills.

Abilities (131 CP)
Action Hero (Crafting, Influence, Invention)
(18 CP): Gelman took the Invention version of this ability at 1st level. He may have up to 24 action points at one time, but his workaholic nature means he has few opportunities to stockpile them.
Augmented Bonus/Canny Fighter (6 CP): May add Int Bonus to Str Bonus for melee combat purposes.
Block (Missile Weapons, Catch, Riposte) (18 CP)
Contacts (6 CP): In addition to his free Contacts, Gelman has established relationships with suppliers across Battling Business World-and beyond. Even if he’s unaware of it, Toonworlds aren’t known for having strong borders.
Equipage/Ultimate Procurement (Link: BlackBerry, Purchasing, Returns), Corrupted, Requires a Business roll (12 CP): The primary reason to specialize in procurement in battling business school, this ability allows Gelman to use his Wealth bonus to pull gear from his pockets and put gear in to build up credit (at 50% value). He may also produce his BlackBerry at a moment’s notice.
Improved Self-Development (12 CP): +2 to Strength, halved per world rules.
Innate Spell/Preserved for Disaster (2 CP): Shield, +4 Shield bonus to AC, negates Magic Missiles, 2000 GP, Corrupted, does not work for one turn after the character has rolled a critical failure. Fate has a sadistic attitude toward unlucky Toonworlders. It enjoys having them narrowly avoid injuries and scrapes-until they screw up under their own power. Then it drops any pretenses of favor and lets the universe have its way with them.
Leadership (6 CP): Specialized: Must actually recruit followers. Gelman receives 4*(ECL + Cha Mod) followers.
Martial Arts (9 CP): Inflicts 1d8 when unarmed, counts as an armed attacker.
Master of Blocking (6 CP): +4 Reflex, Specialized, applies only to Block rolls.
Reflex Training/Combat Reflexes Variant (6 CP): May take an additional attack of opportunity per turn.
Skill Points: 30 CP + 14 (Racial) + 47 (Int) = 91 SP.

Bonus Abilities
Improved Initiative
(3 CP): +2 to Initiative.
Improved Presence/Friend to All Sentient Devices, Specialized, Affects only artificial intelligences (12 CP):  Gelman’s mere proximity calms sentient devices. This is an “Aura of Calm” that makes him immune to Emotion effects and grants any artificial intelligences within 10 feet a +4 bonus to saves against them. He also gains an +8 bonus to social skill rolls against sentient devices. Unfortunately, this makes him highly conspicuous to them.
Improvised Weapons (3 CP)

Free Abilities

Privileges (6 CP): Gelman’s privileges are similar to Marty’s: a battling business license and enough wealth to support his wife and remaining minor children in style. His apartment is in Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
Reputation (6 CP): Gelman is a fairly respected corporate raider, known for his procurement savvy, toughness, and technical proficiency. He’s also a mover and shaker in the local New York City’s Jewish and sentient device civil rights communities. On the other hand, his poor luck and (perceived) eccentricities toward sentient devices are just as notorious.

Broad Skills (All +5 Int, 65 SP)
Physical Skills (15 SP): Stealth (Dex) +11 (5 SP), Temple Mount Krav Maga (Str) +19 (10 SP)
Knowledge Skills (25 SP): Business (Int) +20 (10 SP), Computer Operation/Programming (Int) +15 (5 SP), Electronics (Int) +15 (5 SP), Repair (Int) +15 (5 SP)
Perception Skills (20 SP): Listen (Wis) +11 (5 SP), Sense Motive (Wis) +16 (10 SP), Spot (Wis) +11 (5 SP)
Other Skills (5 SP): Gadgetry (Dex) +10 (5 SP)

Narrow Skills (All +5 Int, +5 Training, 24 SP)

Physical Skills (4 SP): Climb (Str) +15 (1 SP), Drive/Automobile (Dex) +12 (1 SP), Golf (Dex) +12 (1 SP), Jump (Str) +15 (1 SP)
Knowledge Skills (all +5 Int, 12 SP): AI Psychology (Int) +16 (1 SP), Amarant Solutions (Int) +16 (1 SP), Battling Business Regulations (Int) +16 (1 SP), Battling Business World New York City (Int) +16 (1 SP), Business Administration (Int) +16 (1 SP), Close Combat Tactics (Int) +16 (1 SP), Corporate Procurement Procedures (Int) +16 (1 SP), Cutting-Edge Technology (Int) +16 (1 SP), Field Theory (Int) +16 (1 SP), Jewish Doctrine (Int) +16 (1 SP), Meditation (Int) +16 (1 SP), Network Analysis (Int) +16 (1 SP)
Other Skills (8 SP): Bluff (Cha) +12 (1 SP), Etiquette/High Class (Cha) +12 (1 SP), Gather Information (Cha) +13 (2 SP), Intimidation (Cha) +12 (1 SP), Negotiation (Cha) +13 (2 SP), Public Speaking (Cha) +12 (1 SP)

Specialties (2 SP): Business/Procurement (1 SP), Gather Information/Finding Suppliers (1 SP)

Temple Mount Krav Maga (Str)

Many forms of Krav Maga exist in Battling Business World. The style’s aggressive, effective, and popular among corporate raiders. Practitioners of its esoteric Temple Mount substyle meditate on all aspects of Judaism’s holiest site. They apply their comprehension of its durability and spiritual strength to a Battling Business Worlder’s already sturdy body. Almost always paragons of the Jewish faith, these martial artists are immovable and quietly determined in a fight.
Requires: Improved Unarmed Strike or equivalent point buy. Occult Techniques require Compulsive (religious) and some skill in Jewish Doctrine and Meditation.
Basic Techniques: Attack 2, Power 2, Strike, and Toughness 2.
Advanced Techniques: Crippling, Mighty Blow, Prone Combat, and Master Technique: Improved Disarm.
Occult Techniques: Inner Strength, Iron Skin, Ki Focus (Str), Resist Pain
Temple Mount Krav Maga Techniques Known: Attack 1 (“Hook”), Power 1 (“Invoking the Mount”), Strike (“Subdual Stance”), Toughness 2 (“Temple Mount Stance: Base”), Crippling (Str), Improved Disarm, Inner Strength (“Channeling the Mount”), Iron Skin (“Temple Mount Stance: Waystation”), Resist Pain (“Temple Mount Stance: Summit”).

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  1. Eclipse – Battling Business World « Emergence Campaign Weblog
  2. Eclipse – Character Construction Cribsheet « Emergence Campaign Weblog
  3. Eclipse – Sample Races, Templates, and Characters | Emergence Campaign Weblog

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