Val CHA Cost Roll Notes 15 STR 5 12- Lift 200 kg; 3d6 HTH Damage  22 DEX 42 13- OCV: 7/DCV: 7 15 CON 10 12- 11 BODY 2 11- 10 INT 0 11- PER Roll 11-/12- 16 EGO 12 12- ECV: 5 15 PRE 5 12- PRE Attack: 3d6 18 COM 4 13- 5 PD 2 Total: 5 PD (0 rPD) 5 ED 2 Total: 5 ED (0 rED) 4 SPD 8 Phases: 3, 6, 9, 12 6 REC 0 30 END 0 27 STUN 0 Total Characteristics Cost: 92 Movement: Running: 6"/12" Leaping: 3"/6" Swimming: 3"/6" Cost Powers & Skills Martial Arts: Swordsmanship Maneuver OCV DCV Damage 3 Cut +2 +1 Weapon Strike 4 Parry +2 +2 Block, Abort 4 Side-Step -- +5 Dodge, Affects All Attacks, Abort 5 Slash -2 +1 Weapon +4 DC Strike 5 Thrust +1 +3 Weapon Strike 4 "Never Seen The Face Of The Man She Feared": +10 PRE; Only To Defend Against Presence Attacks (-1), Only Versus Human Foes (-1/2) 1 Sailor: Swimming +1" (3" total), END 1 2 Sharp Eared: +1 PER with Hearing Group Perks 4 "Deeds Are Celebrated In Song And Ballad": Reputation: successful pirate captain and skilled warrior (among the Red Brotherhood) 14-, +2/+2d6 Talents 6 "Lithe As A Panther": Combat Luck (3 PD/3 ED) Skills 12 +4 with Swordsmanship 7 "Moved Like An Illusive Phantom": +2 with DCV; Restrainable (-1/2) 0 AK: Aquilonia 8- 2 AK: Hyborean Coast 11- 1 AK: Stygian Frontier 8- 5 Climbing 14- 3 Fast Draw (Blades) 13- 3 Interrogation 12- 2 KS: Customs Of The Red Brotherhood 11- 0 Language: Aquilonian (idiomatic; literate) 2 Language: Stygian (fluent conversation) 2 Navigation (Marine) 11- 2 PS: Knot-Tying 11- 2 PS: Mercenary 11- 2 PS: Sailor/Pirate Captain 11- 3 Stealth 13- 4 TF: Equines, Large Rowed Boats, Large Wind-Powered Boats, Small Rowed Boats, Small Wind-Powered Boats 2 WF: Blades, Common Melee Weapons Total Powers & Skill Cost: 92 Total Cost: 184 75+ Disadvantages 0 Normal Characteristic Maxima 15 Psychological Limitation: "She... Resented Any Man's Attempting To Shield Or Protect Her Because Of Her Sex" (Common, Strong) 15 Psychological Limitation: "Wayward Nature" (Common, Strong) 15 Social Limitation: Woman In A "Man's" World (Very Frequently, Minor) 64 Experience Points 184 Total Disadvantage Points
Background/History: Valeria is from Aquilonia. At some point in her past she ran away to the sea, eventually becoming a well-known and somewhat legendary pirate captain. On one such pirate voyage, she jumped ship to escape the unwanted attentions of a suitor, went inland, and become a mercenary, guarding the southern border of Styiga against invasion from the barbaric south. After knifing a Stygian officer, she fled south, into the forests, only to be pursued closely by Conan of Cimmera, who, like many men, desired her body (but respected her sword arm). Together, the two encountered the last of the Hyborean dragons, and had strange adventures in the lost city of Xuchotl before returning to the coast, where one presumes they eventually went their separate ways.
Personality/Motivation: Valeria has a strong independent streak about her. Howard calls it "her wayward nature," and like many action heroes, she seems to make decisions on a split second impulse, leaving the heaver thinking to others. She hates to be coddled or patronized, and cannot stand to be thought of as "the weaker sex." She is fairly fearless in battle, and will not back down from any man, not even Conan, if her blood is up. However, she is not a man-hater by any means, she simply refuses to be anyone's plaything. One presumes she has had lovers before—but they were on her terms, not theirs.
Quote: "Why won't they let me live a man's life?"
Powers/Tactics: Howard goes to great lengths to describe Valeria as far more than the average Conan "damsel in distress." He writes that she "was stronger than the average man, and far quicker and more ferocious." He also uses such terms and phases as "catlike," " quick and ferocious as a tigress," and "lithe as a panther" to describe her agility and speed in combat. Her high DEX puts her nearly on par with Conan's (who has a 23), while her levels with DCV represent how most of her foes find only empty air when they swing at her. The "Restrainable" Limitation represents how she needs room to move in order to benefit from this levels, if Grabbed, Entangled, or in tight quarters, they will not be usable. Her swordplay is also quite spectacular, with her sword said to be "like a living thing in her hand." She seems to prefer to Thrust, using her levels to help her take called shots at either the throat or the heart (i.e. any x2 BODY Hit Location). As she wears little to no armor, she will Parry or Dodge as needed, taking her time and letting her opponent make the fatal error of opening up his guard.
Appearance: "She was tall, full bodied and large-limbed, with compact shoulders. Her whole figure reflected an unusual strength, without detracting from the femininity of her appearance. She was all woman, in spite of her bearing and her garments. The latter were incongruous, in view of her present environs. Instead of a skirt, she wore short, wide legged silk breeches, which ceased a hand's breadth short of her knees, and were upheld by a wide silken sash worn as a girdle. Flaring topped boots of soft leather came almost to her knees, and a low-necked, wide collared, wide sleeved silk shirt completed her costume. One one shapely hip she wore a straight double edged sword, and on the other a long dirk. Her unruly golden hair, cut square at her shoulders, was confined by a band of crimson satin."
The picture accompanying this character sheet is from Ken Kelly's illustration for the short story Red Nails. While the costume is all wrong I do think it illustrates Valeria's "magnificent body" perfectly.
Designer's Notes: Valeria of the Red Brotherhood appears in the Conan story Red Nails. She is presented as a tough and capable female fighter, and comes across as being quite skilled with the sword. Of course, this being a Conan story she is captured and stripped naked for the inevitable human sacrifice, only to be saved by Conan himself. At the story's end she is in his arms and the two plan to return to the seas to plunder the Stygians for all their worth.
Steve from the HERO Message Boards Writes:
Just a few suggestions spring to mind, and they are pretty minor tweaks, suggested by the character write-up rules for Valdorian Age.
The 5 points saved could be used to buy Combat Luck up to 6/6, with the above Limitation. Alternately, she could add 3 points to INT and a point to BOD. Or she could take a Counterstrike martial maneuver for 4 points and reduce her build to 175 points.
All this means is that while lightly armored or unarmored, she is a quick-moving, light fighter, which seems to fit the build concept.
(Valeria created by Robert E Howard, character sheet created by Michael Surbrook)