Prodigy (5e Background)

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As a child, you were knowledgeable on a certain subject, leading to extremely high expectations from parents and tutors.

Skill Proficiencies: You gain expertise in 1 of the following: Animal Handling, Arcana, History, Medicine, Nature, Religion.

Languages: You know 2 additional languages of your choice. One of them may be an exotic language.

Equipment: An inkwell and quill, books of handwritten notes, a textbook, fine clothes and a pouch containing 15 gp.

Feature: Opportunity[edit]

People who know you well want to see you succeed, so they set up opportunities for you. If you're knowledgeable about magic, they may ask skilled magic-users to take you on as an apprentice; if you're knowledgeable about religion, they may ask a temple to take you in as a priest; if you're knowledgeable about medicine, they may send you into a plague-stricken town to prove your worth.

Suggested Characteristics[edit]

Parents and tutors constantly pressure you to do your best—you may feel that that pressure helps you succeed, or you may resent their lofty expectations.

d8 Personality Trait
1 I have an idiosyncratic method of writing notes that no-one can decipher.
2 I have a tendency to space out.
3 I avoid talking about my family.
4 In my area of expertise, I'm a genius. In all other areas, I'm a total dunce.
5 I'm constantly experimenting.
6 I never write down notes—instead, I keep them in my head.
7 I've been forced to stay inside studying all my life, so I find others' life stories fascinating.
8 When I'm thinking hard, I start humming under my breath.
d6 Ideal
1 Knowledge. I seek knowledge wherever I can. (Neutral)
2 Independence. I don't care what others want; I want to live my life how I want. (Chaotic)
3 Worth. Others place their faith in me. I must prove I'm worthy of that faith. (Lawful)
4 Greed. Others place their faith in me. I take advantage of that faith. (Evil)
5 Aid. I use my vast knowledge to help those in need. (Good)
6 Ambition. I must be the best at what I do. (Any)
d6 Bond
1 My family pushes me to do my best, and I'm thankful for that.
2 My family pressures me to surpass myself. I'll never meet their expectations.
3 My tutor taught me everything I know. I owe them a lot.
4 My tutor takes credit for my vast knowledge, but they barely did anything.
5 I caught the eye of an expert in my area of expertise. With their belief in me, I can do anything.
6 I caught the eye of an expert in my area of expertise. They want me to be their protégé, but there's nothing I'd hate more.
d6 Flaw
1 I'm already under pressure so much pressure, any more and I break.
2 I've grown to resent my area of expertise.
3 I always assume I'm the smartest in the room.
4 It doesn't matter if I blow an opportunity—my family/tutor will find me another one.
5 I often space out when in deep thought, sometimes to the point that I'm not paying attention.
6 I've never been able to meet my family's/tutor's lofty expectation, so I don't believe I can meet any expectations.

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