The One Ring Characters: Arnulf and Burin

Before I eventually get into the story I’m writing set in Middle Earth using the One Ring RPG, I’m going to start off with a few posts introducing some of the characters I’ll be introducing. To begin here are the two main characters I plan on starting the story off with.

Arnulf son of Arn, Man of Dale and Burin son of Frár, Dwarf of the Iron Hills

Arnulf is one of the many Northmen in the region that have taken to calling themselves ‘Bardings’ after King Bard, the ruler of the reconstructed city of Dale and the surrounding Dalelands. In the five years since the slaying of Smaug and the Battle of Five Armies Arnulf has been eagerly helping with the restoration of the city and was among the first to resettle in the small community there a few months after the battle. Being a fairly young man at the age of twenty-one years he has spent most of his time under the guidance of his elders, particularly his master and teacher Burin the Dwarf, and looking up to the example that King Bard has led.

Arnulf and Burin, now good friends, first met when Arnulf’s father discovered his son’s talent in smithing. Not being much of a smith himself, and knowing of the legendary skills of the Dwarven master smiths from those that travelled from the Iron Hills to trade, he decided to send for a Dwarf -smith to come and take Arnulf as an apprentice. After some time the Dwarf Named Burin came to take up the offer. Arnulf worked hard under Burin’s severe discipline to prove that his craft could reach the Dwarf’s high standards. In the long hours Arnulf spent hammering on the anvil under the close scrutiny of his master he learned that it is possible to create amazing things, but it is only by putting your heart into your work that you can succeed in creating a masterpiece. Over time Arnulf and Burin’s friendship grew, and today many of the people of Dale and the Dwarves under the mountain that meet them see them as a great reminder of the things that can be achieved when Men and Dwarves work together again as they had in the past.

Burin not only sees himslef as a friend of Arnulf, but also feels responsible for the young man. Since Arnulf’s parents, Arn and Hild, lost their lives in the blaze of Laketown when Smaug descended from the mountain. Despite his grief and the terror of that experience, barely escaping with his life, young Arnulf could not be stopped from trying to help the other victims from Laketown. He very nearly rushed off to join the people at the mountain, but was discouraged by Burin who knew that nothing but trouble could come from the Dragon’s hoard. Since that time five years past, Burin has worked with Arnulf, trying to steer him in the right direction when he feels it is needed, and supporting him in his endeavours all while continuing to tutor him in the ways of iron and anvil when there is time.

Burin is a Dwarf of fairly few words, and is suspicious of most folk. He has told Arnulf little of his own life apart from that he too has no family left in the world. Despite his usual temperament and attitude towards others, with what they have in common and all that they have been through Burin feels that he cannot abandon Arnulf, at least not until he feels Arnulf is well settled in the new city of Dale. For now, he can see they the two of them make a good team, and there is more to be gained here in a land of new beginnings and fresh opportunities than back in the Iron hills.

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