Bodyguard relationship


I’m helping one of my players with burning a character. This character is a noble lady (born noble, young lady, lady, insurrectionist). One of the things the player asked for is a relationship with a trustworthy slave bodyguard. Now in the character creation rules it says that a bodyguard type character costs 10rps and has to have 2 lifepaths less than the main character. How would you make a useful bodyguard in 2 lifepaths? Is it possible? I can only think of something like Born slave -> Gladiator, but that will only give him enough points to buy the reciprocal relationship and nothing left for armour, weapons, or even clothing or shoes…


(Plan B is that if that doesn’t work out, the bodyguard will actually belong to someone else she has a relationship with - either her mentor or her [hateful] mother, and, although trustworthy, will not always be available).

The bodyguard doesn’t have to be Born Slave, does he?

Just burn him in any setting, I say. That would give you dozens of choices. It really doesn’t matter that much, mechanically, does it? Or do you need those Slave traits?

If you need to be Born Slave, just take a weapon skill with General Points.

Well, no, he doesn’t need the slave traits, but having him be a slave with no lifepath-y reason for it feels like cheating, because if it doesn’t matter, why burn a character at all instead of assigning skills like you do with adhoc NPCs?
I could do Born noble -> Footsoldier for example, and have him be a recently captured Gaul warrior from a noble family… but again 12 year old doesn’t feel very appropriate as a bodyguard.

City Born > City Guard.

A 17 year old hard drinking jackass.

City Born> Outcast > Desperate Killer

A 16 year old convicted murderer she bought instead of allowing to be executed, with Appropriate Weapons, Inconspicuous, Assassination-wise, and a few steel enhancing traits.

If that isn’t the perfect bodyguard for a young female revolutionary, I don’t know what is.

Hrm, with 2 LPs it will be nigh-impossible to get anyone older than a teenager.

You could make him 3LP and then his last LP is Captive of War. No one is going to call the BW police.

In fact, I think there ought to be a minimum on Bodyguard LPs. If I was a 3LP character, that would mean my bodyguard would be a 1 LP child!

Or he can just be a vanilla relationship. The bodyguard thing is to get a “better” NPC follower that can help you, etc. It’s not required to have one at all.

What about…

The poor Kings huntsman that was ordered to kill her, but couldn’t look her in the eye to do the deed, and instead swore to protect her with his life.

City Born > Lead to Court > Huntsman
You can get a guy with Flat 4’s in everything and enough trait points to be a Prodigious* shot with his Crossbow.
*[of the Childish sort], Grey Shade missile weapon skills are stupidly deadly.

Don’t forget, the Bodyguard doesn’t have to have the relationship. He’d have to circle up the lady when he wanted to find her.
She, on the other hand, has him at her beck and call, and has no need to circles him up, ever.

Alternatively, perhaps she is in a situation where she doesn’t have a bodyguard, but needs one. Perfect for a belief! “Any lady as important as me needs a trustworthy bodyguard.” While it doesn’t give the character her bodyguard right away, it leaves room to get a much better and more talented bodyguard through playing.

Hey there,

lots of great ideas, thanks all!

I originally intended to go with a vanilla relationship, 5pts even, since it’s not a terribly important character and not a “champion gladiator the best one ever and he’s called Hercules”. I guess the ‘bodyguard/squire’ rule is there to prevent players from overly exploiting the relationship (the distinction of such a character is “follows the PC everywhere”). Also, Durand, if I’m going by RAW, then the bodyguard does need to buy the reciprocal relationship (also 10rps), as well as his own equipment.

The King’s huntsman won’t quite work since we’re in Roman Republic (and I’m having to do lifepath adaptation on the fly), but other ideas look workable, especially since I realised story-wise he really doesn’t have to be a slave. This can be an impoverished citizen that is her family’s client (would fit both city guard and desperate killer), indebted to her or her recently deceased husband due to them being active members of the populares faction.

(Also she does have a belief about having to get better security after her husband was killed, but I want her to start with at least some servants she’s still got).

True, I’d have assumed your GM might wave the NPC relationship. However, if you instead make him the commander of a force vouched to protect you, with a group affiliation purchased [or freebied] by the PC, then there is no need for him to do it. Instead, he might be the lieutenant of your insurgent group, and any bodyguard that might be assigned you at a particular time, is an agent of that group. It also means that the group always has an eye on you, so you best follow their interests if you know what is good for you.