A number of years ago, while working on Legend of the Archons, my FATE variant, I came up with a character who was supposed to appear in the setting, but I missed some very amusing correlations between him and a certain pop culture figure until very recently. It was pointed out to me when I was explaining him to Alesia, with whom I am working on the LoA story Agents of Change. She took one listen to my description of him and immediately spotted it, and even assumed that it was deliberate… I had to admit to her that it had not been, even though it’s so blindingly obvious. Yeah, I completely deserved the teasing that she gave me over it.
I needed a character who would be a master artificer, weaponsmith and armorer, cunning in clockwork and the crafting of sundry engines of destruction. He was to be physically strong and imposing, and both renowned and fairly wealthy due to his mastery.
He needed to have been taken captive by one of the story’s major antagonists and put to work making those lovely death dealing devices at his captor’s bidding, including a special suit of armor. The idea lay fallow for years because LoA got put on the backburner. Then Alesia and I revived the LoA idea and started working on a collaborative writing project on the subject and I took him out of mothballs.
Not long before I had the discussion with Alesia, I made a cheesy little avatar of him, below:
With all of the above in mind, I needed to name him. Since he’s resident in the Dachs region, which is analogous to the highly fragmented western portion
of the Holy Roman Empire during the Renaissance, I wanted him to have a solid, strong sounding Germanic name. “Stark” is a German word for “strong,” so I named him Heinrich Stark.
You can stop laughing at me now.
Yeah, he looks like RD Jr. Yeah, he is in a cave with a box of scraps making weapons of mass destruction. No, I didn’t for a moment think of Iron Man when I made him up.
That said… if you’re going to do a thing, you might as well embrace it. As far as I am concerned, I am now under a moral imperative to have
Tony Heinrich build himself a suit of clockwork power armor. Yeah baby, it’s going to be awesome.