Character concepts come from all sorts of places. Sometimes they grow over years, tended like a rare flower they sprout and bloom after long care. Then there are those that burst forth from your mind to page (actual or digital) in a flurry.
Darius Dondermonger came into being when two roads combined. The first road originated some time ago, when the D&D released the Drakewarden. Dragons are quite important in the World of the Everflow, so I knew I would revisit the Drakewarden. The second road came when grocery shopping. We needed cheese, lots of cheeses. Yes, we’re fans of charcuterie. These roads merged when reading about Dragon’s Milk Stout’s web-RPG release. As often happens, flavor started to inspire the story.
The Chef Feat in Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything is quite useful for someone who latches onto flavors like this. That pushed towards a Variant Human so that the foods he creates can help heal and/or inspire his companions towards greatness.
Darius Dondermonger kept growing. From a legacy family in a small village, Darius was to be the head of household and manage the ageing of grana (think Parmesean and similar cheeses). Some of these for decades. They use adjuncts at times. That is what sent him to the forests and hills of the area.
He is also flawed. Not only does he prefer the hunt for herbs and the like to management, he also prefers the making of cheese to business. That’s part of why he rejects the full family name. The other part is that he does not feel he’s earned that name, for he has lost something special to them.
Lastly, he took on Dunder, due to his companion’s, and later his own, connection to thunder & lightning.
He is more than just a ranger, more than just a cheesemonger specializing in aged cheeses – Darius Dondermonger has a small dragon companion and has discovered that he is also part dragon. The family’s most exclusive grana comes from their age-old connection to drakes, wyverns, and all of dragonkind.
That same blood compels Darius to travel away from town, for someone with his powers cannot just work the books of Amberhearth and Highwall’s greatest cheese makers. Someone with the blood of dragons must, must, pursue a grander destiny — and also find that which they’ve lost.