Michel D Artaud The Duelist

Michel d'Artaud, The Duelist

Phase 1: Background
Michel d'Artaud was born in Paris, to a hard-working family. His uncle ran a fencing school, and Michel became an accomplished fencer. He idolized the famous fencers of France's history, and adopted a swashbuckler's spirit and attitude. His youthful exuberance led him into trouble when he challenged a rival to a duel in the old-fashioned manner. Michel won his duel — but the law takes a dim view of assault with a deadly weapon.

Aspects: Death Before Dishonor!, Rapier Wit

Phase 2: The Great War
Michel was given a choice by the courts; prison, or enlistment in the French Army. Given the growing German threat, Michel chose military service in order to gallantly defend his homeland. The reality of modern warfare was devastating.
The Battle of the Somme: "On July 1, in broad daylight, one hundred thousand men of the combined British and French armies climbed out of their trenches and advanced shoulder to shoulder across the crater-torn waste of No Man's Land. Weighed down by 30 kilograms of equipment each, they advanced slowly towards the awaiting German guns. In less than half an hour it was over."
That was the first day of many, and Michel became one of the lucky few who survived. He left the army at war's end a changed man.

Aspects: The Sound Of Machineguns*, "I will never fire a gun again."

Phase 3: The Novel
The Duelist in "Curse of the Crusader's Corpse!"
After the War, Michel leaves France behind and journeys to Spain, a disaffected wanderer. In the Basque country, he acquires an unusual rapier: it's hilt is a red jewel engraved with a peculair cross designed like four fleur-de-lis joined at the bases. The jewel is obviously the pommel-weight from a much older sword, perhaps a broadsword. Little does Michele realize that the jewel is haunted! The spirit of it's former owner stalks in his wake, seeking… what?

Aspects: Vagabond, The Calatrava Rapier

Phase 4:
Owl and Michecl should have sword fight a la mistaken identity
Phase 5:

Skills:
Superb: Weapons
Great: Alertness, Athletics
Good: Resolve, Rapport, Might
Fair: Fists, Survival, Endurance, Stealth
Average: Mysteries, Academics, Deceit, Gambling, Investigation

Stunts:
Weapon of Destiny (The Calatrava Rapier: artifact: Craftsmanship, Arcane),
Flawless Parry, Riposte, Catch,
Acrobat

Health: [] [] [] [] [] []
Composure: [] [] [] [] [] [] []

*The Sound Of Machineguns represents Michel's reaction to his experiences during the Battle of the Somme. Sounds of that sort can trigger flashbacks to that Hellish battlefield.

NOTES: In heraldry, a 'Cross Calatrava' is a cross made from four conjoined fleur-de-lis. It was the insignia of a Spanish Order of Knighthood — which is odd, since the fleur-de-lis is a symbol of France. The explanation, or legend, is that the early Knights of Calatrava were French — they were renegade Templars who escaped the purges of King Phillip IV of France and fled to Spain to find new lives. Just like Michel…

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