The Dim Wastes
Dingo the goblin
Dingo is an adult male goblin (19 years old), originally of the Gurmuk goblin clan near Farwater, on the eastern coast of Collosa. Though born as a free goblin, he was captured as a child by coastal pirates and sold into slavery aboard a smuggling ship- the Faire Royale. Dingo spent years working various positions on that ship before it was boarded and taken as a prize by the AES Voidgazer, a privateer built and owned by the Mueller Trading Company. Though all of the human slaves aboard Faire Royale were given their freedom and a small share of the gold taken from their captors, Dingo was kept in chains and put to work on the deck of Voidgazer. The new demon that loomed large in his life was the vicious boatswain of Voidgazer’s deck- a man named Jeremiah Barnes.
Six years and countless beatings from Jeremiah later, Voidgazer was caught unawares by a small fleet of Riyaqan pirate vessels while delivering cargo between Port Miller and Hansen. A fierce cannon battle eventually came to grapnels and boarding axes. In the melee, Dingo’s collar chain was severed by an errant swing too close to the makeshift doghouse on the weatherdeck that served as his quarters. He already knew where Barnes was. Out of self preservation, Dingo always knew where Barnes was. Though he often prided himself on not giving in to his wild goblin instincts- on not proving that people like Barnes were right about goblins being a “lesser animal race”- the wild rage took hold of little Dingo, and he snatched up a dagger from a fallen pirate and charged across the deck. Under ordinary circumstances, a goblin at a full run would barely earn the attention of a man the size of Jeremiah Barnes, but these were not ordinary circumstances. Barnes was reeling as he fought off axe and cutlass swings from two pirates at once. They had backed him to the gunwale. He did not see Dingo coming. At the last moment the goblin leapt high with the dagger forward, plunging it into Barnes’ chest as Dingo’s momentum knocked him backwards, the low wall of the gunwale kicking his feet from under him. The big man went over the edge, into the murky void beyond the ship, with a dagger in his chest and a look of utter shock in his eyes.
In the end, the well-trained crew of Voidgazer fought off the first boarding attempt. It got off a timely broadside at close range into the second ship closing to board, and the rest of the fleet scattered. The ship limped back to Port Miller for repairs, and to take on new crew. Men aboard whispered about seeing Dingo attack Barnes. The first officer was incredulous at the suggestion, but doubts lingered. In the end, the captain traded Dingo to the dock workers for three barrels of brandy. The dock workers traded him to the local thieves’ guild to pay off a sizable debt.
It was there that Dingo found himself in the employ of Jay Thorne, son of the infamous Silas Thorne of Port Miller. The younger Thorne ran the thieves’ guild in the city, and turned out to be far more cruel to Dingo that Jeremiah Barnes had ever been. Barnes had delighted in simply beating Dingo for every perceived slight, and sometimes just out of boredom. Thorne, however, enjoyed torturing the goblin by repeatedly dashing his hopes for freedom or a few comforts. He enjoyed giving the goblin a nice bed and plentiful food for a few days, simply to see the misery when he took it away again. Once, he even staged an elaborate series of traps in a warehouse basement, having some guild members take Dingo there and then pretend to slip up in securing him in a room. Thorne and several others watched in secret as Dingo attempted escape, taking bets on which trap might kill the goblin. When Dingo made it through alive, he was beaten for his trouble and dumped back into chains. He took one lash that night for every copper piece his master had lost betting against him. He lived for weeks in an empty grain bin, with nothing but the few rodents that came and went to keep him company. He eventually started talking to them, but they would move on quickly after they realized no grain was left in the bin. Dingo saved part of his meager ration to tempt a rat into staying to keep him company, eventually luring one to stay. He named it after what he thought must be its favorite food, and the only food he was able to save that the rat would accept- Mr. Beans.
For all the contempt he was shown by Thorne and his guild, Dingo did have skills. That much was clear. And so Thorne and his guild began taking the goblin out of his cell every so often to check for traps on particularly risky jobs. He was fed well a few times when he disabled particularly nasty defenses, but still endured daily humiliation from the guild. After a long while, Dingo’s helplessness slowly simmered away, leaving behind dark thoughts and a bloody plan.
Several jobs came and went before the one came that Dingo thought might be his best bet. A fancy desert ship was in town, and a particularly lucrative kill contract had been offered to the guild by a very rich repeat client. Realizing this kind of money is not attached to easy in-and-out jobs, Thorne took dingo along to scope for traps and ambushes. When they arrived, Dingo counted up the people on board the ship, hidden away in a large barn on the outskirts of Port Miller. He spied several traps, disabling all of them except for one. The ship had an especially nice bunk at the rear of its hold, with more than a few treasures secreted away. The bunk was guarded by an especially nasty flame trap. Knowing Thorne would allow no one else near it before he could loot it himself, Dingo left the trap and told Thorne that everything looked to be clear for the attack.
The thieves’ guild attacked, making quick work of the crew they caught off guard. True to his nature, Thorne was eager to get to the captain’s stash. Before he could, one of his lieutenants received a triggered warning message from one of the guild’s warehouses in town- it was under attack by unknown assailants. Pulling out a rather expensive scroll kept for such occasions, the lieutenant cast a spell and opened the way to take their remaining numbers right to the front door of the warehouse. Cursing, Thorne stepped through with his retinue. Dingo hid aboard the ship, hoping to buy time and praying that Thorne would come back to be killed by the fire trap. Huddled in a dark corner of the ship’s hold, he checked that Beans was tucked away in his tunic and waited to see if fate would smile on him today.