R Pompus Antillus
Moustachioed high-born Imperial combat-archeologist warlock
Standing just more than six feet tall, R. Pompus Antillus would be an imposing individual were it not for the fact that he has the physique of an academic. Even so, given his expensive taste in clothes, slightly exotic-looking olive skin, and dominating moustache he’s still able to cut quite a dashing figure. Sure of movement and of speech, most citizens of Daerdenfel address him as Pompus (or perhaps even pompous), a tacit acknowledgement of the confidence in his breeding that the estranged scion of the Imperial House Antillus is content to let stand.
Carrying a Saerdic longsword with a blade shattered just above the crossguard as his arcane focus, Antillus’s affectation of wearing numerous artifacts and pieces of jewelry conceals the actual number of magic items he wears from casual inspection; he even wears a second, whole longsword in spite of the fact that he is quite unable to use it. Pompus has a large wardrobe, and picks outfits that are on-message for a given situation: for discussions with Imperial officials he prefers the white and red of the Imperial House Antillus, while with other brokers of power he might choose to emphasize different loyalties or connections entirely.
Born Regulus, the fourth of his name, Pompus Princeps Magnus Raepari of the Imperial House Antillus, R. Pompus Antillus seemed destined from a young age to disappoint his parents. Raised by slave-servants in the Creche Canabula of Vlassaedos, Pompus was much like the progeny of every other noble house, the product of centuries of careful alliances and breeding designed to place one of the Antillus blood on the Lion Throne of the Emperor of the Saerds; the result was meant to be the ultimate marriage prospect for the Regulan Line, able to unite the fractious noble houses of Vlassaedos and the wider Empire in a web of marriages that would restore the unity underpinning Empire’s economy of conquest. Needless to say, the fact that he was a willful, stubborn, arrogant child who frequently talked his way around his wardens was an early sign of trouble.
Truthfully, the centuries of plotting on the part of House Antillus would never have come to fruition; even though they had built alliances for centuries, over decades they had declined in favor with the court substantially. Were it not for his personality, the fact that Pompus was born with a talent for arcane magic would have been a fine consolation prize, as it enabled him to attend the Imperial Magisterium at Fimbrae Tower. As it was, rather than study a flashy school of magic to win glory on the battlefields of Ravenna, Pompus made a pact with an obscure being, the Great Old One, and studied the art of mind control; by that same token he elected to study archeology rather than pursuing politics and political science beyond that which was required of him.
The final straw, for both Pompus and his family, was the attempt by House Antillus to enact the arranged marriage that they had managed to secure for Pompus. Discussed by neither Pompus nor his family, the aftermath of the cocktail party at which his wedding date was to be announced was that he arrived at the port of Tamarlaen in the Principalities two days after his twenty-fourth birthday. After two years spent fighting as a mercenary, working as a tutor, advising as a court mage, and loafing as a fop for the various petty rulers of the former March he fled an employer in the process of losing a war with bad grace, and returned to his first love: archeology.
Sailing up the river from Maple Crossing, Pompus reached the port city of Raerdengeld in the year 767, and it wasn’t long before he was taken with how unlike the culture of the March was to that of home or the Principalities. He spent the next two years making his way between sites associated with First Men of Iron settlement in the Raerden Flats and Kensric Downs, finally making his way to Daerdenfel in 770. As of 772 Pompus has been living in Daerdenfel for two years, making his way into the field each spring to do research with the help of his guide, Woden, who he met in a bar in the intervening time.