BiographyEditBorn to Elvish parents in Greece in 320 BC, Orlando lived an unimpressive childhood. His father was an itinerant candle salesman who married into wealth; his mother, Angelica, was an upper-class member of Frankish society convalescing in Greece. The family was frequently on the move, spanning the European continent and ultimately reaching the British Isles. This was, alas, to be the family's downfall, for it was here that Orlando's mother met Lance du Loc, and their adulterous liason resulted in her running away from the family. Heartbroken, Orlando's father immediately rushed towards Angelica's hometown in some confused desperation, taking Orlando with him. Then he died, leaving Orlando an orphan and a crate full of waterlogged candles.
However, due to a mix-up on November 1, Orlando was adopted into a Frankish family and raised to be a warrior. No one asked the obvious question about his pointy ears. (Though some sources claim that he always wore the elegant headband that his mother had sewn once for him and hence, quite remarkably, succeeded in hiding this betraying feature).
Upon coming of age, Orlando decided to set out for new and distant lands, and in the dark of night "borrowed" his adopted father's longship and sailed East, and alone, across the Atlantic Ocean.
Little is known of what happened thereafter, except that 29 years later, he washed ashore alone, stark naked and quite mad, on the Eastern shore of Sicily, raving that "My flamingo has gone missing!" and "Sicilian pirates have stolen my wife, Eloise, and my son, Astrolabe!" When he came to, he mumbled incoherently about "Brasil" and a "sorceress" before finally settling back into a proper frame of mind.
The Sicilian maiden that found him, Esmerelda, felt deeply for him, and took it upon herself to nurse him back to full health. Although Orlando insisted that he was seeking the hand of Iseult in marriage, Esmerelda secretly followed him throughout his later journeys around the island.
By 41 AD, the couple had reached Constantium, where they met the other members of the Lupi. Orlando was brutally killed by Pluto, and Esmerelda was taken prisoner as a from of collateral to ensure Orlando's service to the god of death. (For more on this, see: Praeludia et Nocturnes.) During this service, Orlando was "reunited" (was this another delusion? had they really met before?) with his trusty snow leopard companion, Bucephalus.
Following the resolution of those events, Orlando returned to Francia, where he found his adopted father, Ganelon, had betrayed him by selling his worldly possessions and labeling him a criminal of the realm. After a short and decisive skirmish, Orlando bound Ganelon and took him to an enchantress, who "metamorphosed" the former king into a steel butterfly, endowed with life and sentience, but no means of communication. Orlando, remembering a hallucination of him romancing a Slavic princess, named the butterfly Anastasia.
Upon leaving Francia, Orlando and Esmerelda crossed into Gaul, where they met a cleric of Wotan who, due to reasons completely unrelated to his profession and religious affiliation, took it upon himself to kidnap her with lustful intent; when she would not yield to his will, he murdered her. In sorrow, Orlando hallucinated the existence of another butterfly, which he named Esmerelda in his friend's memory. (For he realized, of course, that the only proper way to mourn for someone is to name a butterfly in his/her honor).
When word of Ganelon's disappearance reached his widow, the faithful woman wept so heavily that she found herself magically transmuted into a small, flightless, black-and-white bird, the likes of which had never been seen before in Francia. Consequently, Ganelon's youngest son, Lance le Petit (sometimes modernized as "Lancelittle"), swore revenge on Orlando, and hunts Orlando throughout Europe in the hopes of dismembering his adopted brother and fashioning the warrior's leftmost leg into an exquisite telescope, thus perfecting his eccentric collection of optical devices.
Due to the machinations of a mischieveious deity ("due to science!" the future quantum physicists vainly argued), Orlando was briefly sent to early-2000's America, where he was eliminated from American Idol in a close quarterfinal. A similar-looking human man found himself unaccountably in the Rus, c. AD 41, for about a week, and swore to never let any of his friends know what he thinks happened to him.
The resulting rift in spacetime further contributed to Orlando's downward spiral of mental health, leading him to believe that his not-exactly-existent signet ring was stolen by a masked and be-top-hatted man of Iberia named Cortez, who is hell-bent on destroying it in the fires of the earth with the aid of his band of forty (be-top-hatted) thieves.
Having blue eyes and dirty blonde hair, Orlando is a Paladin, being of a bit over 360 years, standing 6' 1" and weighing a beefy 220 lbs--outstandingly muscular for an elf. He is goodly aligned, and adheres to the Cult of Wisdom (though other members refer to him as "aloof"), worshipping the goddess Minerva. He is also frequently considered to be a reincarnation of one of the five Goodly Ghouls of Romish folk legend, though the veracity of that is often debated. Due to his extensive travels and elfin background, he has the knowledge of a unique cantrip that causes trees to uproot themselves and dance a brief jig, which he uses frequently to amuse himself.
STR: 11; CON: 10; DEX: 12; INT: 8; WIS: 17; CHA: 19.
AC: 25; FORT: 13; REF: 16; WILL: 17; HP: 54.
Trained in Diplomacy, Nature, Insight, and Religion.