Gorion is probably my favourite character, which sounds crazy seeing as he only has two sets of dialogue (well... as a living person anyway...) We learn so much about this mysterious man through the Bhaalspawn series, and I really think he deserves his own game. He has an absolutely *fascinating* backstory that I would love to learn more about. This is why (it's a long one, sorry)...
Things we know about Gorion:
- He was a Harper and was a good friend of Elminster, Khalid, Jaheira and Cadderly.
- He and Elminster talked often, less so after he adopted the PC, though they still wrote to one another.
- He was a prolific adventurer in his youth, and travelled a lot before adopting the PC.
- He was well-respected and did a lot of good deeds for a lot of people.
- He was a wise sage and decent spell-caster.
- He was often plagued by nightmares.
- He had a quiet nature (Phlydia) and rarely raised his voice (dream sequence).
- The game implies that Gorion was already at an advanced age when the PC was adopted (he had grey hair even then... how old was he to have aged so little in that time... raven dream sequence). The PC is approximately twenty when the first game begins, so perhaps Gorion was in his fifties when he adopted the PC and was in his seventies when the first game begins.
- Imoen describes him as 'stuffy ol' Gorion.' He likely had quite a serious and preoccupied nature, probably a result of trauma he experienced in his life. Perhaps this was why Imoen was sent to live with Winthrop; maybe her light fingers and immaturity tried his patience too much, or maybe he couldn't cope with raising more than one child. Despite this, Imoen affectionately refers to Gorion as 'Mr G.'
- Though perhaps he let his guard down occasionally with people that he trusted. Phlydia declares to the PC, 'oh, you remind me of Gorion when you smile like that!' and 'Gorion sure did raise a charmer in you.' And how else would he have been friends with crass, bawdy old Winthrop?
- Even with the PC, he found parenthood testing at times. The PC was a bit of a 'little hellion' (according to the diviner near the lighthouse) and raising them was 'hard on him' and 'a labour of love, of destiny even' (Phlydia). Theodon inside Candlekeep talks about an instance when the PC was a young child. Khelben Blackstaff visited Candlekeep and the PC made off with his cloak, wearing it naked and running it through muddy stables as Gorion ran after them. Although Gorion was shaking with anger, everyone else saw the funny side, including Blackstaff himself.
- He was somewhat strict and regimented as a parent and it was unlike him to interrupt the PC's chores (prologue).
- Despite this, Gorion genuinely loved the PC and thought of them as his own (Gorion's letter, Jaheira and Khalid, Cadderly, Elminster). He also appointed Khlaid and Jaheira as guardians to protect the PC should he die.
- He was once the lover of the PC's mother and felt compelled to raise them after her death (Gorion's letter).
- Also, as the tale unfolds in subsequent games, it appears that he lied about the circumstances in which the PC's mother died. He says in his letter that she died in childbirth, possibly to protect the PC from the (rather awful) truth.
- Gorion also hid the fact that he was a harper from the PC, likely in an attempt to make the PC's childhood as normal as possible (Cadderly).
- From the dream sequence with the raven, it seems that, after fleeing with the infant PC to find somewhere safe to raise them, Gorion sought help from a number of different people before arriving at Candlekeep. He had a heated argument with Ulraunt, the Keeper of the Tomes, after which he finally allowed Gorion and the PC to live there. He somewhat prophetically states 'that child will be the death of you.' This is testament to how much influence Gorion must have had as getting into Candlekeep is a difficult, expensive and often beaurocratic process.
- Tethtoril, the first reader, had a lot of respect for Gorion as well and may well have influenced Ulraunt's decision (he was known for bailing Ulraunt out of embarrassing and difficult situations according to the manual, and he undermined Ulraunt by helping the PC to escape when accused of murdering the Iron throne leaders).
- It is implied that Gorion might have left Candlekeep ten years later on a Harper plot to rescue Imoen, and bring her back to raise (Imoen's biography), though much of Imoen's childhood is very mysterious. Perhaps this is something that could be explored.Siege of Dragonspear
- Madele, the priestess of Bhaal, alludes to the story that Gorion was a Harper spy sent to infiltrate a temple of Bhaal. She says that he and the PC's mother had a secret love affair and he thought that their love would turn her from evil, but that the other worshippers knew what was going on. It seems that the priestess mislead him and betrayed him, and he caught her with a dagger about to sacrifice her child. It seems Gorion was forced to slay the mother and escaped with the child. She talks of other Bhaalspawn children being 'stolen.'
- Jaheira may have been there, or at least seems to know what Madele is referring to. Madele says that the infant was 'stolen,' but Jaheira interjects and says that the children were 'liberated' from the temple and rescued from sacrifice, and it was not unknown for Harpers to intervene in this way.
- Perhaps this is why Gorion took the PC rather than Sarevok, due to an emotional bias because he loved the child's mother (out of duty, love or a sense of personal guilt) rather than randomly picking up any child. Gorion may also have formed an emotional attachment to the PC as a baby, or accepted he was to adopt the child anyway when their mother was pregnant with them (I'm a bit confused about the PC's exact age, I only surmise that they were in the formative years when the sacrifice was due to happen).
- He may also have chosen to raise the child to give it as normal a childhood as possible (similar to what Cadderly said in the base game) to equip it with the ability to fight their Bhaalspawn nature and grow up to be a good person.
- He taught the PC to value knowledge, and showed kindness in every aspect of his life (dialogue trees from the PC).
- Despite being closer to Winthrop, Imoen loved Gorion and felt he influenced her decision to become a mage.Shadows of Amn/Throne of Bhaal
- Imoen alludes to Gorion being mysterious and that Jaheira knew more about him than she or the PC (Jaheira rebuffs her and says they simply shared mutual acquaintances as Harpers). Imoen frequently voices her respect for Gorion and her love of Candlekeep.
- Imoen also said that Gorion was a poor sleeper and in one of her party banters said that he once woke from a nightmare and blasted a fire spell (though this might have been a childish tall-tale).
- Gorion's shade also alludes to Imoen as his 'second hope' (though this is a wraith pretending to be him, so I'm unsure if it counts). Perhaps Gorion had a lot more affection for Imoen than he let on. Perhaps Gorion's feelings about Imoen could be expanded upon.
- When a young adventurer, Gorion battled Lord Jierdan Fiirkrag, an evil red dragon, and defeated him. The dragon bore the grudge for decades before attempting to take his revenge on the PC in adulthood.
- The shade of Gorion and Alieanna, the child's mother, explain to the PC that she was a priestess of Bhaal, and that he impregnated her with the PC to birth as a sacrifice to help the Lord of Murder to ascend.
- Gorion killed the child's mother and fled with the PC as a baby, leaving Sarevok behind.
- The PC acknowledges why Gorion did not tell them (in one of the dialogue trees) because it was a pretty awful truth to hear. This kind of explains the letter in the first game and the lie that Gorion told 'for the greater good.'
I had kind of wished that a prequel, explaining Gorion's background and perhaps even a bit of Imoen's childhood story could have been made rather than an in-between game.
I would like to learn about Gorion's numerous friendships and associates and how he came to have them, and also how he became a Harper.
I like how complicated Gorion is. He is praised by so many, yet despite his virtues he is far from perfect. He sounds quite tortured, and perhaps his love for Alieanna blinded him to her evil, made him ignore the advice of others and potentially put Harper lives at risk because of their secret affair. Did she truly, completely dupe Gorion, or did she actually love him (despite loving Bhaal more)? How did they fall in love in the first place? I wanna knooooooow.....
I would really, REALLY like there to be an explanation of how Imoen came to be at Candlekeep too.