Outside Over There
Mental Attributes: Intelligence 5, Wits 2, Resolve 5
Physical Attributes: Strength 6, Dexterity 2, Stamina 8
Social Attributes: Presence 5, Manipulation 2, Composure 5
Mental Skills: Crafts 5 (Woodworking), Investigation 4, Occult 4 (True Fae)
Physical Skills: Brawl 5, Stealth (Quiet and Still) 7
Social Skills: Animal Ken (Hedge) 3, Empathy 5, Expression (Tale-spinner) 5, Persuasion 4, Subterfuge 3
Merits: Danger Sense, Eidetic Memory, Encyclopedic Knowledge, Natural Immunity, Toxin Resistance
Speed: 16 (species factor 8)
Contracts: Smoke •••••, Stone •••••
Glamour/per Turn: 14/5
Armor: 5 (Natural Armor)
Type /Damage Range/ Dice Pool
Gnarled Fists 2(L) — 13
Billy stands 10’ tall and, when still, is easy to mistake for the tree he’s named after. His body is covered in peeling white bark, his feet are tangled masses of roots, and his legs are sturdy and trunklike. Long, thick, branches form his arms, which end in gnarled hands with fingers that constantly break off and regrow. His wooden head and face are nearly hidden among the green leaves growing on the branches that form his shoulders. Billy is much faster than might be supposed, given his apparently unhurried stride and while slow of wit (Billy doesn’t understand humor) he is quick of mind.
With the wind constantly whispering in his ears, it’s nearly impossibleto sneak up on Billy and he’s only found when he feels like being found. Most often Billy chooses to be found when he takes a break in the evening to digest a particularly toothsome bit of loam or sink his feet into fresh water. At these times of rest, Billy is usually open to some conversation with passersby and may even seek out fellow travelers if the wind tells him some are nearby. Billy insists on trading tales for tales. It doesn’t matter to him if the story told was made up on the spot, stolen from a TV show or movie, or if the teller relates true-life experiences. What matters to Billy is the telling.
Billy prizes knowledge above all else, both the giving and receiving of it. Fortunately, Billy is an easy audience to please. Stories that might bore human audiences to distraction hold Billy just as rapt as the best blockbuster thriller. He soaks up the information presented while whittling away at a piece of wood gathered from his own body, only occasionally interrupting to ask for clarifications. When it comes his turn to speak, Billy will politely ask his “guests” what interests them. He will answer any question and relate any story to the best of his ability, completely without prevarication. Billy never lies and he recognizes a lie when he hears one. Lies are one of the few things (other than outright assault) that move him to anger. From his point of view, a lie taints information and corrupts the purpose of intelligence.
Other than the obvious drawbacks of angering a giant in tree form, Billy Birch can call upon the other denizens of the Hedge to defend him. Even normally mindless predators hold a strange kind of respect for Billy and will rush to his aid. It’s said that even the True Fae will respond to Billy’s cries for help and, even if that’s not true, smart changelings don’t test their luck. If the situation devolves to violence, opponents find Billy eager to satisfy. He dispatches his enemies with crushing blows from his wooden fists or by simply picking up an adversary and hurling them into the Thorns.