A while ago, I started a worldbuilding project by coming up with a concept for a single border town, Ennistra. Next, I will describe the city’s inhabitants, and a vague description of their backgrounds and personalities. With no further ado:
Anyik Reider (TN male human sorcerer 6/aristocrat 1), Ennistra Council and Guardian-Mage. Only 19 years old, grew up in Ennistra in an affluent family. Developed his innate magical abilities, which are well suited to the fields of protection and abjuration, at a very young age, and has since devoted his studies to magic. Chosen as a Councillor for his study and knowledge of the magical arts. Guarded and quiet.
Inocol Danier (NG male human aristocrat 5/[seer/natural scrier type class] 3), Mayor of Ennistra. Seer abilities often manifest as visions and impressions of the (relatively) near future, which along with his upper-class childhood and subsequent education enabled his rise to prominence as a natural leader.
Jarrit Curider (CN male human cleric 8 of Eduno), Ennistra Council and Priest of Eduno. Somewhat recent arrival to Ennistra, moved to the border village on a mission from his church. The shrine he built there soon grew into a rather large church. Chosen as a Councillor for his close contact with the people of Ennistra.
Jenna Osara (CG female halfling ranger 5/aristocrat 3), Ennistra Council. Retired scout and tracker. Grew up in a small halfling settlement near Ennistra’s future location that eventually disbanded and scattered as humans moved into the region; by this time she was approaching old age and welcomed the influx of settlers as an excuse to settle down and retire. Chosen as a Councillor for her in-depth knowledge of the land surrounding Ennistra.
Fiaren Helliner (LG male human fighter 6/aristocrat 1), Ennistra Council and Commander of the Guard. Veteran out of Eriwald, fought in [religious war with loadsa necromancy and other skeery things]. One of the original settlers of the region, moved out here because it was quiet and peaceful relative to being at war in the South. Chosen as a Councillor for his experience with military strategy and defense.
Rhana Bruangi (LN female dwarf expert 18), Ennistra Council and Master Craftswoman. Originally trained as a blacksmith, has since become a master at all sorts of metalworking and has at least some small degree of knowledge of most trades and crafts. Spends a significant amount of time among the craftspeople of Ennistra, learning their trades and their ways. Chosen as a Councillor for her knowledge of artisanry and her experience running large production operations.
Ennistra Guard and Reserves
Alesei Erattas (NG wood elf warrior 8), commander of the Eagles, Ennistra’s scouting force.
Etli Jonier (LN female human warrior 5), Guard Captain of the North Wall. Came to Ennistra with her brother Yanji as a youth as her family fled the beginnings of the war in the East. Stern but warm.
Fiaren Helliner (LG male human fighter 6/aristocrat 1), Ennistra Council and Commander of the Guard. Description above.
Wrift Tricy (LG male human warrior 4), Guard Captain of the City Watch. Young, energetic, humorous. Slow to anger and slow to forgive.
Yanji Jonier (LG male human warrior 5), Guard Captain of the South Wall. Came to Ennistra wih his sister Etli as a youth as his family fled the beginnings of the war in the East. Quiet, street-smart.
Alden Gairal (LN female halfling expert 3) Master Locksmith. Moved to Ennistra about 5 years previous to escape from irritating and overbearing family, luckily around the right time for Ennistra to be big enough that things needed to be locked up in the first place.
Arnon Coller (CG male human commoner 7) Master Wheelwright. Used to be a caravaneer and tinker. Settled in Ennistra as he was getting on in years and as travelling became more dangerous.
Atar Liolei (TN male half-elf expert 5) Master Carpenter. Raised by her elven mother, didn’t fit in with elven society, left at a fairly young age to live among humans, ran into the [Ennistra] series of border villages and dabbled around in a variety of skilled work. Now works almost exclusively on boats. Has a fantastic poker face–always deadpan.
Drasya Avier (LE female [devil-changeling] aristocrat 3) Master Painter. A bit of a dilletante. Lives off her inheritance (it is unclear how she acquired this, as she is quite young), not her work. Charming and beautiful, she has quite the collection of suitors.
Emory Fallier (LG male human expert 4) Master Sculptor. Works with both stone and wood, both of which are plentiful near Ennistra (dwarven mines and unoccupied forests). Avuncular, generous. Moved to Ennistra to get away from the prices and hubbub of the city.
Frugo Giska (NE male halfling rogue 5) Master Tanner. Grumpy, mean-spirited, and stingy.
Gairra Skajol (LN male dwarf expert 9) Master Mason. Quiet, keeps to himself. Runs a tight ship at his workship, but is always fair; no one ever has any complaints.
Ian Ceijar (TN male human expert 3) Master Jeweller. Elderly, nearsighted, master of his trade. Mostly works in silver and semi-precious stones. Specializes in engraved rings and other cast trinkets.
Ilou Svaeran (NG female elf expert 5) Master Potter. Aloof, wistful, devoted to her work.
Irani Jeluner (CN female human expert 4) Master Ropemaker. Works closely with Atar Liolei and Kilo Jhavaer in order to produce enough for the fishing boats, riveboats, and ferries to go out.
Kilo Jhavaer (NE female human expert 3) Master Weaver. Primarily works in sailcloth, but also provides cloths to the various tailors and seamstresses in the city. Usually cheerful, but has a very short temper, and will quickly get irritable and even spiteful if annoyed.
Rhana Bruangi (LN female dwarf expert 18), Ennistra Council and Master Craftswoman. Description above.
Yavin Glisva (CN male gnome expert 5/sorcerer 3) Master Alchemist. Spontaneous, adventurous, a free spirit. Has a wife and 5 young daughters.
Illamiri Estrada (TN female elf druid 7 of Sylvio) High Priest of Sylvio. Watches over the farmlands, supervises production and magically supplements the soil.
Jarrit Curider (CN male human cleric 8 of Eduno) Ennistra Council and Priest of Eduno. Description above.
Kai Lienaer (CN male human druid 4 of Zebei) Druid of Zebei. Focused, a one-track mind.
Orris Idaer (LG male human paladin 6 of Ekalli) Champion of Ekalli. Sanctimonious, to the point of annoyance at times. Undeniably skilled at ferretting out elusive wrongdoers.
Raele Jirriser (NG female human cleric 4 of Ainarri) Cleric of Ainarri. Motherly, caring, protective to a fault.
Yobir Yanio (LE male human cleric 4 of Idya) Disciple of Idya. Charismatic and charming. Runs the inn that is a front for the thieves’ guild.
The reason that most of the humans have surnames is that the vast majority of them are matronymics–add or elide ‘er’ (possessive form of ‘child’, approximately) to the end of the mother’s name to get the surname of the new baby human. Matronymics are used because of the high incidence of single parents among humans (for multiple reasons–fathers killed by war, fathers ‘doing a runner,’ mothers dying in childbirth, etc.). In the case that the child is raised by a single father, the matronymic is in remembrance of and respect for the mother. In the case that the child is raised by a single mother, the matronymic is to identify the child as belonging to the mother. Among humans, motherhood is considered a sacred thing (which is why there are deities devoted to women, children, and birth, and not one to men!) When Elves use surnames, it is outside of Elven society, and it is often a place name, referring to their hometown or homeland. Dwarf surnames refer to professon, halfling surnames are passed along in families and clans (like most Western surnames on Earth), and gnomish surnames (prenames? Their first names) are adopted at adulthood.