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"Do you really wish to know?"
Spoilers from the books and/or adaptations to follow!
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Noo – nature! The world's so rich in mysteries, in wonders left to discover – and ways to make it a better place!
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- Barnabas Beckenbauer, Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales

Barnabas Beckenbauer, to friends Bibi, was an inventor from Tir Tochair who liked to explore the Continent and sell inventions. He visited many countries in the Nilfgaardian Empire, the Northern Kingdoms and some beyond.

Biography

Early life

Born around 1207 in the mountainous gnomish enclave of Tir Tochair, Barnabas was a son of a blacksmith and a washerwoman. In youth, Barnabas developed a fascination for birds.

After reaching adulthood, which is forty years in the case of gnomes, Barnabas decided to leave his homeland to travel the world. One of the reasons why he decided to do so was that staying in Tir Tochair would have meant becoming a blacksmith like his father, a prospect he quite dreaded.[1]

At some point, Barnabas befriended Percival Schuttenbach, whom he considered "fine gnome but a bit of a bore".[2]

Traveling inventor

A curious person with an itch to uncover all sorts of mysteries hidden in the world, Barnabas visited Nazair twice, went to Kovir, Metinna, as well as distant lands of Korath desert and Zerrikania. In Caingorn, the gnome was a technologist at King Niedamir's court. He left, however, after accidentally setting the castle on fire.

Barnabas lived in Novigrad for a time too. Once he was visited by a wealthy widow who, missing her husband, was tormented by unfulfilled desires. The gnome then crafted a small rotating machine for her self-pleasuring. Hierarch Cyrus Engelkind Hemmelfart was furious when he learned of the contraption, deeming it unholy and vile. He decided to burn it and its manufacturer at the stake but the gnome managed to escape.

Stay in Mahakam and Queen Meve

In 1267, Barnabas reached Mahakam. There, the gnome decided to finally give vent to his avian fascination and construct a device allowing him to fly. He calculated every trajectory and created the first prototype dubbed "The Skylicker". He took a thrill-seeking dwarf as a volunteer and went to test it. There was an initial success as it reached more than a 120 ells but alas, the dwarf did not survive the landing. As he lied wounded a bear came by to finish him, though with the final breath the dwarf swore Barnabas he regretted nothing.

Next, he arrived in a part called the Mahakam Pass, went from house to house offering his gadgets but unintentionally broke several laws. The dwarves were ready to forgive him malfunctioning products such as bomb which exploded in one's hand or fire catching beard-growth formula but he entered a smithy with a hat on, poured the syrup in his ale and worst, whistled in a mine. Elder of Mahakam Brouver Hoog sentenced him to death by barrel roll down a chasm.

He was already in a barrel when Queen Meve of Lyria and Rivia was passing by. Hearing Barnabas scream, she dismounted and spoke to dwarves.

If Meve interrupts the execution:

TB Barnabas black brook vale

Barnabas analyzing the water in Black Brook Vale

Fortunately for the gnome, Queen Meve interrupted the execution, saving his life. Willing to repay his debt, Barnabas joined White Queen's corps, creating bombs and other stuff for her troops. Thus he became the first gnome in the Lyrian history to enlist with the army. He proved his merit when the Queen wanted to learn what was behind the Black Brook Vale curse. Barnabas quickly deduced it was no curse but the poisoned water which caused its settlers deaths. He gave the newest settling group an aquapurificator, his invention to make water drinkable by filtering it.

Swamps of Angren

When the Queen's partisans reached old Aen Seidhe ruins in Angren, Barnabas' knowledge of Elder Speech came in handy. Spotting a fresco depicting a hideous creature with words Gvaern Ichaer inscribed above it, the gnome whispered it meant the "Bloody Mistress", otherwise known as Gernichora.

After defeating a hoard of monsters, they found a stone pedestal that held a magical elven sword. Meve took it, then gave to astonished Barnabas who, intently studying its quillons, spotted an inscription. He translated it as "Wieldeth me and loseth not hope amongst the blood red waters".

Broadhead factories

Barnabas followed Meve back to Rivia where they liberated Broadhead. In past full of proud workshops and manufactories, the town became poor as its products were unable to withstand competition presented by dwarves and gnomes of nearby Mahakam. Barnabas approached Queen Meve and offered to repair Broadhead's falling industry, proving to Rivians nonhumans can be helpful as well.

If Meve gives Barnabas permission: Appointed the Inventor-in-Chief of the Kingdoms of Lyria and Rivia, he could officially begin restoring the town's economic potential. Soon after, foundries and manufactories were bustling with life again, the Broadhead Manufactory founded by Barnabas himself being the pride of them all.[1]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales
  2. Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

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