Echoes and Shadows
Equally adept at the manipulation of mechanical and magical energies, Giotto seeks to fuse the two together. His experiments are even successful...sometimes.
Growing up in the Feywild, Giotto received extensive exposure to the powers of magic, whether divine or arcane or natural in origin. While he proved to be an adept student of magic, his desire to understand magic rather than merely experience it didn’t endear him much to his tutors. Giotto sought the rules, mechanics, laws, and theorems that governed magic even as the eladrin insisted that no such rules existed and that magic was beyond such confinement. As he grew into adulthood, Giotto realized that he would have to leave the Feywild if he intended to further his researches.
He arrived on Dauma over a hundred years ago now. After a number of mishaps and establishing definitively that neither brown bears nor hill giants are the dominant species on the Prime Material plane, Giotto wound up at the Academy of Arcane Arts in Kolis-ke. He impressed the academicians with his fey training in the arcane and easily won entrance into the academy. There, at that eminent institution, Giotto hoped to find the disciplined study of magic that had always been his dream. He found a more rigorous study of magic, yes, but he also found institutional barriers and a fractured, factional faculty and canonical rules that refused to yield before new research. Giotto’s attempts to find a Theory of All Things that united physics and chemistry with magic were derided by his fellows. His experiments involving the application of magical energies to machines were deemed foolish at best and heretical at worst. It certainly didn’t help Giotto’s academic career that several of his experiments escaped from Giotto’s control, most notably in the Juicing Incident of 3128 that left three other students injured and one stained purple for life. Giotto received his certification in due course—perhaps more quickly than other students, though accusations that he was rushed out of the Academy have never been proven. When he attempted to continue on at the Academy as a research fellow, however, it was suggested to Giotto that his talents might find better application elsewhere.
Consequently, Giotto took to the road, engaging in a long and fruitful career as an adventurer and wandering scholar. Between adventures, he would often be found futzing with mechanical doo-dads and gew-gaws and gizmos, much to the chagrin of Naul, his barbarian adventuring companion whose affection for machines began and ended with compound inclined planes. After a number of mishaps, including the Juicing Incident II of 3136 that left the township of Hix flooded and its blueberry crop devastated, Giotto finally arrived at the design for his Luminary/Incendiary Gas-fueled Hermetic Transportable Ergonomical Receptor. The L.I.G.H.T.E.R. proved enormously popular throughout Kolis and beyond, eliminating the need for people to carry leaden tinderboxes full of hot ashes upon their persons. Sales of the L.I.G.H.T.E.R. made Giotto fantastically wealthy, even after rival companies reverse-engineered his design and began to sell knock-off products with less ridiculous names. Even with more than enough money to settle down and devote himself to research, he continued on with his adventuring career until the tragic death of Naul in 3141.
Giotto retired to Briston, there to continue his studies and experimentations. He owns a small townhouse, where he can seldom be found. Far more often, he is in the barn-cum-workshop on the outside of town, perfecting his designs. He has taken on Freya, a local bard, as assistant, to function as a part-time chronicler and recorder of his exploits and to function as a full-time healer in the case of horrific injury. Rumors abound that Giotto is due to release a new invention soon, one that will make the L.I.G.H.T.E.R. look like child’s play (assuming the child was playing with fire, which is something that children should not be doing).
Giotto is tall for a gnome, topping out at almost 3’8” in height. Though well over a century old now, he still appears young. He has a penchant for greasing his hair and combing it straight up off of his head, a style which he insists will become popular at some point although it has yet to catch on. For all his eccentricities, he is very much a people person, and will gladly talk the ear off of anybody who can stand to listen about his old adventuring days or his new designs for a bread-slicing machine.