The Dark Horse Conan Sourcebook

Aelthwold- Niord’s village

Aelthwold is typical of many small villages with Asgard. Located at the end of a small valley somewhere in the center of Asgard Aelthwold is far from the borders of its neighboring lands of Cimmeria, Vanaheim and Hyperborea. Built in typical Nordenheimer fashion the longhouse is the center of the town with the various outbuildings, huts and stables built around it. The longhouse serves as the meeting and dining hall for the man of the valley and the home for the unmarried men of the clan. It’s primary furnishings are a single long table with two low benches and the clan chief’s chair at the end. The communal kitchen is connected to the longhouse. The married warriors of the clan live in huts surrounding the long house. Women live with their parents until they are married and then move into a hut built by their husband. There are no children born out of wedlock- if a man makes a woman with child his honour dictates that he must marry her. As chief of the Raven(1) clan of the village Niord has a number of huts of his own but since his wife’s death he has taken to sleeping in the longhouse with his men leaving his daughter Henga to sleep alone in his hut. She has used this opportunity to slip away with suitors such as the young Conan but unknown to her Niord is fully aware of her activities. One might think he looked the other way when she favoured the young Conan in order to perhaps bind Conan to his clan in a more permanent way.

The clan’s other buildings are purely functional- huts to store supplies, a stables and a granary. All building are built of wood and thatch. The area around the village is cleared and is used to grow what grain they can from the soil during the land’s brief fertile periods but the villagers subside more on hunted meat, gathered vegetables and goods traded with the Brythunian than their own agriculture. The village lacks a protective wall. Until recent years the village existed with few conflicts but increased raiding from both the Vanir and the Hyperboreans have pushed the border conflicts into Niord’s lands. In response Niord had begun construction on a defensive ditch and palisade but it was not yet near completion by the time of Tir’s raid.

Tir’s unexpected and bloody raid upon Aelthwold came upon the traditional Nordenheimer holy Autumn solstice when the warriors were engaged in the sacred hunt of Ymir. To raid on such a day was a sacrilege, but the resulting surprise allowed to Tir eliminate the vast majority of the village’s woman, children and elderly. Only the intervention of Conan and the swift return of Niord and his men prevented it from becoming a complete slaughter. The village suffered great damage with the destruction of several huts and severe damage to the granary and longhouse. After the subsequent annihilation and capture of almost all the village's men by the Hyperborean wizard lords it is unlikely that Aelthwold will every recover and Henga and her remaining people will be absorbed by a neighboring clan or be captured by a slaving party.

(1) No, this isn’t a bit of hubris in calling Niord’s clan totem a Raven. Look above Niord’s head at the carving in his chair in Issue #1, pages 15 and 20. The clan chief’s chair he is sitting in is engraved with a bird whose position and appearance make me think it is a Raven. Of course, I could be prejudiced…..8)
Paetoria- Brythunian village

A small village in the Brythunian countryside Paetoria is a village little touched by violence. The slave raids and banditry common the northern borderlands of Brythunia seldom touch this deep into the green and pastoral lands. It stands a few day travel north of the Nemedian border but Nemedia has never shown imperial interests in pushing north in living history. Like most Brythunian villages the town has two buildings at its heart- the church of Mitra and the Weary Traveler, the town's only inn. Buildings are made from stone and wood and are usually two stories tall. Streets are unpaved but clean. It serves as the trading hub for the neighboring farms and hamlets where farmers come to sell their excess produce and buy the goods they can’t produce themselves. Tinkers and small traders come up from Nemedia to meet them and the village taxes all of them.

The largest landowner in the village also serves as head elder, magistrate and owner of the Weary Traveler. A few townsmen serve as militia or guard if need be but they lack any training and are inexperienced in anything more than interrupting drunken brawls or capturing a cutpurse. As such the townsfolk will back down from any serious show of strength.

Paetoria is claimed under the aegis of Lord Barthlowes whose castle lies several days ride to the south. Barthlowes is little interested in the doings of such a small village save that they pay their taxes regularly. The locals would rather settle with potential bandits and reavers than fight- they know that even if Lord Barthlowes knew of their need it would be days before any help he would choose to give would arrive. If thus fails they would flee or surrender before fighting, fighting only if cornered. All villagers should be considered Commoners, though the village inn may hold a few more experienced indivduals.

After the betrayal of their clan to the Hyperborean wizard lords Sjarl and Einar fled to Paetoria while Sjarl debated what their next action should be. Conan successfully tracked them down and killed them in front of the stunned townsfolk. After that and several days of hard drinking, lacking any other plan or direction he traveled to Nemedia to see for himself the lands of the south as described by his grandfather.
Volume One is done people. All of those on my mailing list will get a copy today, gods be willing. Everyone else pm and I'll send it. Give me a couple weeks ere I feel up to starting Volume Two people....only so much us young demigoddesses are capable of. 8)
Thank you. Of course you should thank the Conan editor Scott Allie ( ) and the rest of the Dark Horse crew- they came up with the ideas. I just translated them into gaming stats. I plan to send them a copy if they promise not to sue due to copyright infringement. Lawyers can have no sense of humor. 8)

Look to me starting Volume Two in two weeks or so. Have to tie up another project first...
Volume Two

The God in the Bowl and Other Stories

”Green to civilization, and entirely lawless by nature, Conan the Cimmerian entered the southern lands in the reaches of Brythunia. Ere long, however, he found his way to the larger towns of Nemedia, where he made a rough living as a thief..."

-Kurt Busiek, Dark Horse Conan #7
The God in the Bowl (Issues #7-#11)

The Story So Far

Traveling South from Brythunia Conan enters Nemedia- the first truly 'civilized' land has ever encountered. Here he lives off the land by stealing food and clothing from the hapless villagers he runs across until he enters the city Bertinus where a short incident involving a city magistrate, a set of stolen regalia and two hapless thieves force him to considering moving on again. This incident recommends him to a foppish and deeply indebted young noble named Aztrias who engages him to steal a Zamorian goblet from the treasure house of Kallian Publico. Little does Conan know though that greater intrigue than mere robbery passes beneath that darkened roof that night nor that his steps are dogged by mysterious assassin intent on embroiling Conan in her mistress's schemes.....
"I may never understand why you [people] love to wall yourselves away from the world in dirty, smelly warrens.....still there are a few things to recommend you."

-Conan, Conan #8

Conan the Wanderer
[as of Issue #7]

Male Cimmerian Level 3 Barbarian/Level 1 Soldier
Hit Dice: 4d10+12 [42 hit points]
Initiative: +7 [+4 Dex; +3 Reflex]
Speed: 30 feet
Defense Value: Dodge 15; Parry 15
Damage Reduction: None
Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+8
Attack: Broadsword +8 melee [1d10+6; 19-20 x2 critical; AP 7] (1)
Full Attack: Broadsword +8 melee [1d10+6; 19-20 x2 critical; AP 7]
Special Attacks: Crimson Mist; Trap Sense +1; Versatility
Special Qualities: Bite Sword
Saves: Fort +9 (2); Ref +7; Will +6 (3)
Abilities: Str 18; Dex 18; Con 17; Int 16; Wis 15; Cha 17
Skills: Balance +6; Bluff +9 (4); Climb +13; Craft [blacksmith] +5; Hide +8 (5); Intimidate +7 (6); Jump +9; Listen +7 (5); Move Silently +8 (5); Spot +7 (5); Survival +9 (5); Swim +8
Feats: Brawl; Endurance; Fighting Madness; Power Attack; Sleep Mastery; Track
Reputations: Brave [Brythunia- 5, Cimmeria- 3]; Criminal [Nemedia- 7]; Villain [Aerie- 7]
Code of Honour: Barbaric

Languages Known: Aquilonian, Brythunian, Cimmerian, Hyperborean, Nemedian, Nordenheimer, Pictish

Equipment: Broadsword, cheap Tunic, Loincloth

(1) Conan prefers to use his Broadsword two-handed. His statistics reflect this.
(2) Conan's Endurance Feat gives him +4 to all appropoiate saving throws.
(3) Includes the effects of Conan’s Barbaric Code of Honour which also gives him an additional +3 against Corruption tests. He also receives a +2 bonus against Fear and Terror checks due to his Fearless special ability.
(4) As a Cimmerian Conan suffers a -2 racial penalty to the verbal use of this skill. He suffers no penalties for non-verbal uses of this skill such as Feinting.
(5) As a Cimmerian Conan gains a +2 bonus to these skill checks in Cold or Temperate Hill and Mountain Terrain.
(6) Conan uses the Bully verson of Intimidate which allows him to use his Strength as an ability Modifer for this skill.

After his disasterous adventures in the northern reaches of Hyboria Conan decides to drift aimlessly about the southern reaches of Brythunia and enters into Nemedia. Low on supplies and lawless by nature he exists by stealing what he needs from others, little understanding ideas such a property and laws. His curoisity leads him to Belarius where after being splashed by mud by the city magistrate Attarus he decides to teach the arrogant nobleman a lesson. He is forced to run off when the town watch arrives, but breaks into Attarus's mansion that night. After swiftly disabling the ineffectual guards, Conan at first thinks to slay the man but then decides steals his gold ornaments as killing such a coward would be of little satisfaction to him.

Ignorant of civilized rule Conan fails to recognize the ornaments as sacred regalia which are easily recognizable and thus unsellable. The town watch begins to hear rumors of a thief stupid enough to try and sell Attarus's crown and scepteropenly and Conan spends a frantic night staying one one step ahead of them by ducking from alley to alley, wineshop to wineshop.

In a small nameless tavern he meets a pair of low- rent thieves named Triagio and Viartus mugging a hapless merchant. Concocting a plan born of desperation he tells the two of he theft, tempting them to steal the regalia- just as the city watch bursts into the tavern. Having slipped into a side room, he watched with amusement as the sputtering thieves are dragged away to rough justice.

Little did Conan know that two others in the bar were silently evaluating his performance. The first was the nephew of the governer of Numalia- a foppish fool named Aztrias Petanius who was more fond of drinking, women and gambling than he was wise. Deep in debt he had concocted a foolish plan- that with the help of his friend Tinna he wuld hire a thief from Belarius and have them steal a prized bejeweled Zamorian goblet hidden in the treasure house of Kallian Publico and sell it to pay off his debts. Seeing in Conan a useful tool he offers to hire Conan for the theft and to pay him well for it. This particular job would prove to more difficult than either man realized.

The other one watching him that night was Janissa, an assassin oathed to the mysterous sorceress known only as the Bone Woman- a sorceress who watched Conan for purposes yet unrevealed in a game that had been going on for centuries......
Can I PLEASE get a copy of your work Raven? Outstanding material so far! Volume 1, 2, and whatever else you got :)

Thanks so much.
As far as I can tell, there are no names for any of the villages or cities in Volume One, though if someone can spot any go ahead and point it out. I looked hard for them. Aelthwold was a random combination of semi-Nordic syllables that sounded good. Aerie means a nest high up for an eagle or similiar bird, usualy in an inaccessible place like a mountain range, which fit the wizard-lord's remote and forbidding abode well. Paetoria is a bit of tongue in cheek. When I was young for some reason Peoria, Illinois was considered a cliche for an abode of country bumpkins. Since Brythunia tends to be rural backwards cousin of the Hyborian kingdoms I just made it sound Latin to fit the genre.

As for checking my PMs, I've been off-line most of the weekend enjoying RL hospitality over the weekend.
Okay, here's the one most people have been waiting for....

”Stupid oaf! You think yourself a warrior? You think you can give me advice? You’re a fool- a fool who let yourself become addled by drink in Vantia- in a unfamiliar town!”

“Vantia! That was the town’s name! But how- ?”

“Who do you think struck you from behind, hm? Left you passed out in a pool of cheap wine?”

-Janissa and Conan, Conan #11

Janissa the Widowmaker
[First Appearance Conan #7]

Female Zingaran Level 10 Swordmaiden [Level 5 Soldier/Level 5 Temptress]
Hit Dice: 5d10 + 5d6 + 20 [74 Hit Points]
Initiative: +12 [+5 Ref; +5 Dex; +2 synergy bonus]
Move: 30 feet
Defense Value: Dodge 20 (1), Parry 16
Damage Reduction: None
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+10
Attack: The Bone Woman’s blade +13 melee finesse [1d10+2; 18-20 x2 critical; AP 8] (2) [see upcoming post on New Magic Items] or Throwing Blade +13 ranged [1d6+2; x3 critical; AP 4; 10 foot range increment] [see upcoming post on New Weapons]
Full Attack: The Bone Woman’s blades +13/+8 and +13/+8 melee finesse [1d10+2/1d10+1; 18-20 x2 critical; 8 AP] or Throwing Blades +13/+8 ranged [1d6+2; x3 critical; AP 4; 10 foot range increment]
Special Attacks: Art of Distraction, Sneak Attack +3d6 (1) (3), Weapon Familiarity [Greatsword]; +1 racial bonus to attack with Arming Swords or Broadswords
Special Qualities: Aura of Authority; Binding Contract; Comeliness; Formation Combat- skirmisher; Savior Faire; Spurn Seduction; Title (4); Vigilance
Saves: Fort +7; Ref +10; Will +11 (5)
Abilities: Str 15, Dex 20, Con 14, Int 14, Wis 13, Cha 19
Skills: Balance +14; (3); Bluff +19 (5); Climb +14; Diplomacy +6 (3)(6)(7); Disguise +9 (6); Escape Artist +15; Gather Information +13 (6); Hide +25 (1); Heal +3; Intimidate +25 (5) (6)(7); Knowledge [local] +6; Knowledge [nobility] +4; Knowledge [tactics] +7; Listen +21 (8); Move Silently +25 (1); Perform [virginity] +5 (6); Profession [sailor] +4 (3); Ride +7; Sense Motive +16 (3); Sleight of Hand +15; Spot +21 (8); Survival +4; Tumble +23, Use Rope +8 (3)
Feats: Acrobatic; Cleave; Combat Expertise; Exotic Weapon Proficiency [moonblade] [see upcoming post on New Weapons]; Improved Feint; Light Footed; No Honour; Noble Blood; Power Attack; Sneak Subdual

Reputation: Brave [Hyborian Kingdoms- 15]
Code of Honour: No Honour
Allegiance: The Bone Woman
Corruption: 3
Insanities: Socipathy (minor) [See upcoming post on New Insanities]

Languages Known: Aquilonian, Brythunian, Corinthian, Demonic, Hyrkanian. Kothic, Nemedian, Ophirian, Shemtish, Zamorian, Zingaran

Possessions The Bone Woman’s blades; an Akbitanan Poniard and twelve Throwing Blades hidden about her outfit; the smaller stone of a set of crystal balls of speech and vision; Merchant class halter-top and loincloth

(1) Includes Light Footed Feat
(2) When using one of the Bonewoman’s blades alone Janissa often uses it double handed. If she is doing so, increase her attack damage by 1
(3) Includes racial bonus or penalty
(4) Though technically a minor member of Zingaran nobility, Janissa does not use her original name and makes no use of her Title
(5) Includes Aura of Authority special quality and the No Honour Feat. Due to the No Honour Feat and her own Corruption Janissa only possesses a +5 saving throw against Corruption.
(6) Includes effect of Corruption
(7) Includes synergy bonus
(8) Includes Vigilance special ability


”You’d hear my tale then? Hear my story? Hnh. How is it such tales begin? ‘Once upon a time’? Very well then Conan of Cimmeria, One up a time there was silly, stupid girl….”

-Janissa, Conan #11

The woman who would later be known as Janissa the Widowmaker was born the daughter of a prosperous merchant named Lestario. Blessed with wealth and cursed with a lack of sons, Lestario sought to marry his daughters into the nobility that his heirs might be of royal linage. Two of daughters proved tractable to this plan, their thought consisting of little else save wearing fancy clothes, attending dances and marryingrich young lordlings. The third daughter was of a different temperament. Rather than be married off like good traded and sold, she longed for freedom, to be a warrior and to earn her way in the world by her skills and determination rather be an expensive ornament to a jaded noble. So one night she stole one of her father’s horses she fled his estate seeking a sorceress reputed to live in the hills to implore her aid.

So the daughter of Lestario discovered the Bone Woman and spoke her wish to be powerful, skilled and the equal of any man in battle. There the woman who would be known as Janissa struck a deal with the Bone Woman. In exchange for making her a warrior of great prowess she would serve the Bone Woman for a length of time equal to twice the time her training time. The Bone Woman’s method of training would be quite different than what he girl expected. After being rendered unconscious by the Bone Woman’s powdered Yellow Lotus Mash, the girl found herself sealed in a deep cave whose only entrance was far out of reach. From that entrance the Bone Woman tossed a single weapon- one of the magical blades that bears her name- and bade the girl make good use of it as her first lesson was upon her. A few moments later a foul creature, a minor demon of vile countenance leapt from the shadows. It easily overcame the girl and bore her to the ground, tearing at her garments. Under the Bone Woman’s cold gaze the demon repeatedly raped the girl repeatedly until she passed out from the pain. When she awoke the Bone Woman crouched over the girl with food and water. “Rest.” the Bone Woman said. “Regain your strength [and] think on your mistakes, on what you might have done better. There will be two them tonight.”

”…and the girl began dully to comprehend that someday, somehow, there might be an end to her ordeal. But it did not come. It did not come.”

-Janissa, Conan #11

So it continued. By day the girl would heal and recover from the assaults of the night before and practice with weapon she had been given. At night the demons would come their number increased by one. The demons fought not to kill, but to overcome the girl and violate her at their will. When the girl killed the first one, the Bone Woman treated her wounds with magical herbs and taught her knowledge of strategy and tactics. The next night she killed two before being overcome by their numbers. As the girl killed more, the Bone Woman used her bone melding spell to speed the girl’s recovery. As the number of demons who died at the girl’s blade grew, the Bone Woman granted the girl the magical blade’s twin.

In the nearly lightless pit, time had no meaning. Every ounce of softness, mercy or compassion melted away from the girl, making her a hardened killer with little equal, thus fulfilling the Bone Woman’s promise. Demon after demon fell to her blades until no more did any bear her down to the ground and violate her. She slew horde after horde for a month until the entire cave was an abattoir strewn with bodies of unclean beings Then the Bone Woman deemed her warrior’s training complete and the girl took the name Janissa. And she serves the Bone Woman’s whim to this day, the time of her service to that immortal sorceress not yet complete.


The Corruption of her mentor has not left Janissa untouched. Prior to meeting the Bone Woman, she had a larger, more voluptuous figure and bore auburn brown curls and light brown eyes. After her harrowing, her hair became straight and blood red and her figure spare of any softer flesh. She also bears a scar from her ordeal in the demon pit from her left eye to her lip. Her eye color is so dark that the seem bottomless pits when she is angered or her bloodlust is stirred, which is often. Blood red lips often part in a sardonic smile to reveal perfect ivory teeth. Yet she retains a striking, almost frightening beauty and dresses in a provocative manner in order to distract the men she battles. She disdains armor, electing greater mobility and the ability to fade from view if a conflict turns against her. If she needs to move among people without attracting notice she often doffs a heavy cloak to disguise her outré gear and appearance. Unknown to most people the ruby set in the pommel of her Poinard is the smaller stone in a set of crystal balls of speech and vision she uses to keep in touch with her mistress.


”Pff, I thought you break me in two…?”

“And perhaps I can. But you have more skill than I’d expect from a woman.”

“Most men I’ve faced wouldn’t admit to that. Then again, most don’t live long enough.”

-Janissa and Conan, Conan #11

Janissa is assassin, little interested in the rules of fair combat or chivalry. If she means to take the life of an opponent she will make use liberal use of her Sneak Attack, setting her target up for it by using surprise, Art of Distraction, Improved Feint or the Stunt Attack combat maneuver. She’ll often make use of her Throwing Blades to strike down opponents in the beginning of combat via Sneak Attack before engaging in melee. On larger or heavily armored targets opponents she’s make use of her Power Attack Feat using her blade two handed to maximize the Feat’s effectiveness. If faced with a large number of lesser skilled opponents she revels in the opportunity to use her Cleave Feat to gorge her bloodlust.

Janissa values her own skin- she will make use of Combat Expertise and/or fight Defensively if she feels hard pressed. Her high Tumble skills allows her to move about a fight with little chance of ever suffering an Attack of Opportunity allowing her to come and go in a battle as she pleases. She had no compunction against retreating from greater opponents to seek a better opportunity to attack them later.

Roleplaying Notes

”What do I care? What do I care if Kalanthes wins through- or if Thoth-Amon guts him and eats him and lays waste to the world? I do the Bone Woman’s bidding, as I swore to.”

-Janissa, Conan #12

Janissa is a functional sociopath. Human life, ideals, laws and even common courtesy have no meaning to her. Even the survival of the human race is irrelevant to her. Only the will of Bone Woman motivates her. If order to protect and aid a person important to the Bone Woman’s goals she does so. If ordered to kill a person she does it. If ordered to knock a Cimmerian barbarian unconscious, take him to another town and leave him for the watch to find she does so. What purpose it serves she cares not. The Bone Woman has effectively stripped her humanity from her. On the other hand Janissa has never been known to kill a person completely out of hand or without reason showing an core of iron hard control and the ability to defer her bloodlust if needed. Her life is certainly violent enough that she has ample opportunity to satisfy her need for conflict during the fulfillment of her duties.....

Yet Janissa is likely to appear in a game as an ally rather than enemy to PCs. The Bone Woman often desires to thwart the ambitions of other, more powerful sorcerers and rather than opposing them directly she helps their enemies. Often this involves sending Janissa to watch over those devoted to the downfall of her enemies, either covertly eliminating threats to them or placing useful allies in their path or more overtly as a bodyguard. Janissa often hold little regard for such ‘do-gooders’ and is merciless in scorn and ridicule to what she sees as their naiveté, inexperience and incompetence. Often such ‘allies’ can begin to hate her worse than the one she is protecting them from.

Should Janissa survive long enough to fulfill her term of service to the Bone Woman and regain her freedom, few could guess at what she would do were she free to act of her own violation.
'Betrayed by two of Niord’s men to the Hyperborean wizard-lords, Conan, Aesir and Vanir alike were captured by the wizard lord’s foul creations- the Gurnakhi. The city of the wizard-lords in Hyperborea turned out to be a far different land than his uncle’s tales of paradise........'


Is this plot from Howard or from Dark Horse or others?

it's all Kurt Busiek/Dark Horse, but the basic idea of Conan being captured by a race called Hyperboreans from the north early on in his wanderlusting is Howard.
”Tell her I tried. I was unable to sway the Duke’s advisors. They are too loyal. I have returned the money. I have paid more, as apology! Can she not leave me be? Can she not- But no. She does not send you to talk. Kill her, men. Let that be an end to it.”

-Dion Pirenus, Conan #7

Dion Pirenus
[First appearance Conan #7]

Ponitainan Aquilonian Level 6 Courtier (1)
Hit Dice: 4d6 [16 Hit Points]
Initiative: +1 [+2 Reflex; -1 Dexterity]
Movement: 30 Feet
Defense Value: Dodge 11; Parry 14
Damage Reduction: None
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+5
Attack: Dagger +5 melee [1d4+2; 19-20 x2 critical; AP 3]
Full Attack: Same
Special Attacks: +1 to attack with Hunting Bow
Special Qualities: Adaptability [Bluff, Profession (merchant)]; Enhanced Leadership; Lead By Example +2; Rank Has It Privileges; Social Ability [refuge]; Title; Wealth;
Saves: Fort +2; Ref +1; Will +7
Abilities: Str 14; Dex 9; Con 11; Int 15; Wis 14; Cha 14
Skills: Appraise +10; Bluff +15 (2)(3); Diplomacy +16 (4)(5); Disguise +5 (6); Forgery +13 (6); Gather Information +16 (5) (7); Intimidate +12 (2)(5); Knowledge [local] +11; Knowledge [nobility] +11; Listen +5; Professikon [merchant] +16 (2)(8); Sense Motive +13 (7); Spot +5;
Feats: Deceitful, Investigator; Negotiator, Persuasive; Skill Focus [Profession (merchant)]
Code of Honour: None
Reputation: Talented [Poitain- 8]

Equipment: Concealed Dagger; Noble class turban, robe and shift

(1) This class were created on the Mongoose Forum by geordiekimbo. Further information on the class can be found here:
(2) Includes Adaptability special ability
(3) Includes Persuasive Feat
(4) Includes Negotiator Feat
(5) Includes synergy bonus
(6) Includes Deceitful Feat
(7) Includes Investigator Feat
(8) Includes Skill Focus Feat

Dion Pirenus was a merchant of some account in the Aquilonian province of Poitain. In his youth he rose suddenly from the ranks of common merchants suddenly with a series of very timely investments that paid very handsomely. With this money he established a name for himself, gained control of certain tradestuffs within the province and became a sometimes advisor for the local nobility over matters of trade and taxation.

Few knew however that the source of Dion’s initial success was not born of his shrewd skill and solid intellect- of which he possessed a not inconsequential amount- but of a deal made with the ancient sorceress known as the Bone Woman. To her skill with the arts of divination the mere forecast of which commodities would be of value in the near future was child’s play. In return for her help she would ask certain favours of Dion to affect policy in the province of Poitain to be more to her liking. Fearing her power and the skill of her pet assassin Janissa the Widowmaker, Dion obeyed these instructions to the best of his ability but secret longed to be free of her influence.

In Conan’s sixteenth year of life, Dion influence proven to be too little to sway the local Duke’s advisors into a policy more to the Bone Woman’s liking. He repaid the Bone Woman’s agent with interest in attempt to apologize to her for his failing, but her rightly feared her wrath would descend upon him nonetheless. He retired to his refuge- a villa high in the Poitainan Mountains that had once served as a fortress in the province’s past. He also took the precaution of hiring a large number of soldiers to guard his fortress and devised an ambush for Janissa for when she arrived. In the end all of Dion’s precautions proved to be futile. Janissa easily infiltrated his villa, fought through his ambush and slew him where he hid in the highest tower of the villa.
Hyborian Sentry (1)

Hyborian Level 1 Soldier

Hit Dice: 1d10+1 [7 Hit Points]
Initiative: +4 [Improved Initiative]
Speed: 30 feet
Defense Value: Dodge 10; Parry 12
Damage Reduction: 5 [Leather Jerkin and Steel Cap]
Base Attack/Grapple: +1/+3
Attack: War Spear +3 melee [2d6+3; x2 critical; AP 5; Reach] or Shortsword +3 melee [1d8+2; 19-20 x2 critical; AP 3]
Full Attack: Same
Special Attacks: Weapon Familiarity [Greatsword]
Special Qualities: Adaptability [Listen, Spot] (2)
Saves: Fort +3; Ref +0; Will +2
Abilities: Str 14; Dex 10; Con 13; Int 10; Wis 14; Cha 10
Skills: Knowledge [nobility] +2; Listen +10 (3); Perform [Guard Mount] +4; Profession [Soldier] +4; Search +4; Spot+10 (3)
Feats: Alertness; Eyes of the Cat; Improved Initiative
Code of Honour: None (2)
Reputation: Brave [City or Fortress- 1]
Advancement: As Soldier

(1) Statistic for Sentries reflect soldiers in similar roles throughout the Hyborian Kingdoms. Dion Pirenus’s men were Poitainan Aquilonians
(2) As the religion of Mitra is prominent among the Hyborians individual Sentries may possess the Faith special quality and/or a civilized Code of Honour at the Gamemaster’s discretion.
(3) Includes Adaptability special ability and Alertness Feat

A common type of soldier found in every Hyborian army, town, city, fortress, palace or wealthy merchant’s home Sentries are soldiers meant to detect unlawful entry to an area. Found equally on the picket line of an invading army or the banquet hall of a feasting noble family a Sentry’s job is to keep their eyes and ears open for any sign of trouble and to give the alarm if they find it. They also man checkpoints in and out of secure areas in order to screen incoming guests and search them for concealed weapons or other contraband. Because they often interact with prominent individuals in somewhat tense moments most Sentries have pocked up a little knowledge of the proper forms of address and custom of the elite to avoid offending the wrong people at the wrong time. As they often occupy ceremonial posts they also are well practiced in the cadence and maneuvers of the formal guard mount of their station.

Sentries are taught to fight and are competent at it but are hopelessly outmatched by profession mercenaries, veteran line soldiers or skilled assassins- as Janissa the Widowmaker demonstrated so readily. Like many civilians Dion Pirenus erred in having a great number of Sentries to watch over his stronghold but having no heavier type of troop ready to reinforce them. Thus Janissa defeated his entire guard corps in short order and with great pleasure.