The Lord of the Rings: Shadow of the East
Mayor Gresham Shaper
Mayor of Wibbleham. He inhabits a smial behind the inn, with a sculpting studio in the wood on the far side of the hill.
Short-haired and lean in the face for a Hobbit, Gresham has a quietly handsome visage often marked by an expression of mild puzzlement.
Lifepaths – Village Born, Kid, Lead to City Dweller, Apprentice, Sculptor, Sculptor, Lead to Noble Court, Court Artist, Student, Lead to City Dweller, Scribe, Lead to Villager, Town Official
Age – 83
|PTGS||Su: B2||Li: B4||Mi: B6||Se: B7||Tr: B8||Mo: B9|
Skills – Carpentry B3, Cartography B5, Engraving B4, Etiquette B4, Falsehood B3, Foreign Languages B5, Geometry Training, Illuminations B5, Mason B4, Mending B2, Oratory B4, Painting B3, Read B6, Rule of Law B3, Sculpture B5, Throwing B3, Town-Wise B4, Trouble-Wise B4, Write B5
- Knowledge can unlock the mysteries of the past.
- Wibbleham is where I’m most needed.
- Whenever possible, make a friend of your foe.
Traits – [Char] Halfling, [Char] Bad Egg, [Dt] Broken In, [Char] Passionate, [Char] Romantic, [Dt] Near-Sighted, [Char] Pragmatic, [C-O] Fleet of Foot, [Char] Genial, [Char] Thunderous Snoring, [Dt] Cool Headed
Well-read Hobbits are a rare breed; Gresham Shaper, even rarer, is both scholarly and popular, at least in his home village. After a series of curious adventures, involving, it is rumored, a goblin trapped in a teapot and a wizard doomed to live in the form of a weasel, Gresham led many clanless Harfoots to the Shire in the early 1630’s and helped them stake claims around the village of Wibbleham, in the Southfarthing. In spite of his outsider status, odd ways, and quiet manner, Gresham was elected mayor of the village. He has served ably in that post for the greater part of a decade. Within the village he arbitrates disputes over property lines and wandering beasts, organizes smial-delvings and well-borings, presides at the reading of banns (betrothals), weddings, feast days, and burials. Away from his home, he represents his fellow “Wibblins” at the Shire-moot, advises less worldly leaders on the ways of Men, argues bounds and road tolls with neighbors, and lays out defenses in case his well-chosen words fail to keep the peace.
Some think he spends too much time on reflection and philosophy. His true calling, though, is as an artist: Gresham creates statues in traditional styles for the powerful and wealthy of Eriador. His best works express an attitude of watchfulness, as if the subject had just sensed some strange new thing in the wind. These thoughtful statues, reliefs, and gargoyles sell well in dangerous times when patrons appreciate being pictured as alert and watchful. A bachelor (rare among settled Hobbits), Gresham is rumored to hoard wealth, including a number of exotic mathoms on shelves in his burrow. He is the most likely Hobbit in the Shire to possess a rare wine, food, bit of metal or stone work — but he shares them with a select circle of friends who have similarly exotic tastes. The villagers of Wibbleham forgive him his queer habits; in his polite and unpretentious way, Gresham has served them well in the past and will probably do so for some years to come.
Gresham is only distantly familiar with the Fallohide brothers, but is on good terms with most of the Southfarthing leadership. Among other things, they call on him when in need of advice about the world beyond the bounds. He keeps up with outside events through regular visits to Iach Sarn, where he counts the Lord Guardian Prince Minastir as an acquaintance and several knights as friends. Gresham has done sculpting for important people in both Arthedain and Cardolan. Only about two-thirds of them have met Gresham in person; the remainder are unaware that their “country artist” is a Hobbit. As an artist, Gresham is only marginally more prestigious than other craftsmen who work for the gentry. He is, however, on familiar terms with their stewards, seneschals, head butlers, and housekeepers — he can get a good meal in well-stocked kitchens most anywhere in western Eriador.
He is something of a polyglot and is fluent in Westron, Sindarin, Quenya, Adûnaic, and Gwathuirin.