A goblin NPC of refined skill in fashion, helped by his animated objects, devotes his life to making the world a bit more glamorous.
Born and raised in a nomad goblin clan of Blackarrows, Zuzo was always a quirky soul. Ever since his youngest days, he sought different paths than his peers. When others shot from the bow and practiced with wooden swords, Zuzo was in the camp, repairing broken toys and patching rags. When others tamed wolves, Zuzo was learning advanced knots. This earned him a false reputation as a coward, and it made things worse when Zuzo explained how his woolen coats keep his friends alive in winter.
It took plenty of black eyes and broken noses (on both sides) and a useful rabbit trap design, for others to start respecting his unique skills. Nevertheless, when he was a teenager during one of the clan’s raids, Zuzo hid in a town shop, refusing to pillage and kill. Fate had it that Mr. Bonko, a shoemaker and the proprietor of the establishment, didn’t scream when he saw Zuzo, but rather showed compassion for the poor goblin. He saw Zuzo’s warm heart and gentle touch and gave him an opportunity for a better life. And Zuzo repaid it over twelve years of working in ‘Bonko’s Boots’. With his skills and quick wit, he made new, fashionable footwear and saved the shop from bankruptcy. Having no kids, Mr. Bonko left the establishment to Zuzo in his will.
And thus began a second wave of hardships for this peculiar goblin, having to fight stereotypes and prying eyes, ill-wishers, and thieves. He read about the law to defend against false accusations; he taught himself basic arcana, for protection. His business survived three arsons, two floods, and seven burglaries—he stood the ground until the last blaze. Retrieving his cindered belongings, he packed his arms and reputation and ventured into the world.
Court dances filled the next decade of his life. From wealthy merchants and politicians to nobles, kings, and emperors, there isn’t a posh person who Zuzo hadn’t clad. They could mock him about his heritage but they couldn’t deny his exceptional tailoring. All wanted his designs, even plotting to get him to be exclusive. However, he remained as he always was: a goblin of the highest professionalism with passion and intuition for a fine cut.
Eventually, the court stories bored him and he settled in a dilapidated Tralin’s Theater that got a new owner. It was a small town and a fresh page, a new challenge: to bring life to the establishment, to clad the actors in the finest, eccentric costumes, and lend his craft for joy, arts, and beauty.
Of Gentle Heart and Touch
Zuzo finds beauty in art, kindness, and prosperity. However, he is prone to embarrass those who behave badly in his presence. His dextrous hands allow him to achieve the highest of craft levels, both tinkering and tailoring.
This jolly goblin enjoys a good laugh and is often the cause of one. He is famous for his practical pranks involving stage props, which force actors to improvise and often result in an even better performance. The audience loves it and is awaiting the prank during the show.
Daydreamer and selectively focused
Zuzo often dozes off during a conversation, designing his next dress in his mind. During work, he’s highly focused and almost unperceptive of his surroundings. Almost, because the moment someone touches his tools, he snaps back to reality.
Notable Combat Features
- Trained Arcanist — Zuzo is a magic user of medium skill with expertise in conjuration magic. In battle, he animates and conjures objects to aid him.
- Impervious Fashion — When not in his working clothes, Zuzo dresses in the latest high-class fashion. His enchanted suits grant him temporary quickness, endurance, and resistance to mundane weaponry.
- Ik, a needle friend — Zuzo’s most deadly weapon. This animated needle is quick, terribly hard to spot, and is connected to the endless thread in Zuzo’s back pocket. In battle, it pierces and ties Zuzo’s enemies. The rumors say he once sewed the mouth of a deceitful nobleman.
- Dud, a mannequin friend — This faceless, well-dressed animated caricature is Zuzo’s assistant and butler. Sometimes Zuzo talks to it while working. In battle, Dud is capable of giving serious punches with its wooden fists.
- Sharp mind, teeth, and eyes — Zuzo has good vision in darkness, a quick problem-solving mind, and razor teeth. He usually only needs the first two for any situation.
Fill the battlefield with the most comical and dangerous tools: suffocating coats, flying needles, self-tying silk, gigantic pin cushion, snake-like tailoring measure rope, and shin-kicking stools. Zuzo’s battles are usually light-hearted with the goal to shame his aggressors. However, he is capable of more advanced magic if needed.
- You encounter Zuzo as he and Dud are fighting a bunch of thieves in a local town.
- You encounter Zuzo in Tralin’s Theater workshop. He’s not kind to thugs and thieves.
- You find Zuzo in a local town where he confronts his past clanmates. They demand ‘absence payment’ from Zuzo.
- You encounter Zuzo after a chase in a local town where the party managed to hide in his shop. He shelters them.
- You stumble upon Zuzo chasing after frenzied Dud, whose incantations went awry. He is trying to prevent Dud from hurting anyone while protecting it from the guards.
- You are pointed to Zuzo via a third party when searching for clothing enchantments.
- Zuzo’s needle Ik is broken. He needs a starsteel ore to make a new one.
- Zuzo needs you to capture the current leader of the Blackarrow clan who treats Zuzo’s cousins and past friends with cruelty.
- Zuzo needs you to break into the royal treasury. The king has falsely accused Zuzo of witchcraft and has taken Zuzo’s most expensive cloth. He wants them back.
- There is an enchantment that would grant Dud the mannequin sentient characteristics. He’d be able to speak and think and have a soul. Zuzo will give anything if you find it for him.
- Zuzo needs the party to retrieve a special royal gown from the emperor’s tomb. By the myth, the gown possesses the most powerful clothing enchantments ever seen.
- Zuzo needs the party to collect feathers from the Giant Eagles of the mountains. He will use them to make the new costume and will enchant the party’s clothes in return.
Let me know below what would be the most comical Zuzo battle scene you can think of. I recon getting crushed by a giant pin cushion while tied and being kicked by wooden stools is high on the list.
Zuzo is part of the upcoming adventure location, Tralin’s Theater. It has loads of rooms, quirks, quests, and NPCs for you to craft your own unique adventure—a truly magical place.
be careful with fine silk,
and dress well.
Nikko | Keeper of Fireflies