Mr. Scruffy is the former pet housecat of the late Lord Shojo and currently Belkar Bitterleaf's primary animal companion. The cat, initially part of Shojo's assumed persona, has traveled with Belkar since the fall of Azure City, sometimes fiercely defending Belkar within Mr. Scruffy's limited capacity. Mr. Scruffy has been a humanizing factor on Belkar, teaching him empathy.
Biography[edit | edit source]
Early Life[edit | edit source]
Mr. Scruffy was one of four kittens in a litter to a white bicolor cat, the only kitten in the litter to have an all-white coat. Lord Shojo saw the litter and fell in love with Mr. Scruffy, taking him back to his palace. Mr. Scruffy enjoyed a friendly relationship with Argent, Shojo's nephew Hinjo's paladin mount.
No Cure for the Paladin Blues[edit | edit source]
Mr. Scruffy first appeared on the lap of Lord Shojo, and was a part of Shojo's deception of the upper class of Azure City. Shojo used Mr. Scruffy as a part of his complex ruse to pretend that he was senile by listening to and being persuaded by Mr. Scruffy's "advice" on important matters.
Due to Mr. Scruffy's apparent sway over the leader of Azure City, he was also known as the "power behind the throne" of Azure City. While Mr. Scruffy was not, strictly speaking, a member of the Sapphire Guard, his association with them was quite tangible and unique.
War and XPs[edit | edit source]
Belkar first begins to befriend the cat while Mr. Scruffy is still with Lord Shojo. Mr. Scruffy is present when Miko killed Shojo. He runs off during the murder, and is not seen again until after the Battle of Azure City. Mr. Scruffy was traumatized by the murder of his master, and had nightmares about the event.
Don't Split the Party[edit | edit source]
After Azure City fell to Xykon, Belkar took on Mr. Scruffy as his friend and companion, even using him in battle against Tsukiko. Belkar threw an angry Mr. Scruffy into Tsukiko's face, who proceeded to badly claw her and distract her in a battle with the resistance. (Belkar was originally going to join Tsukiko and switch sides, until he remembered how much he wanted to throw a live housecat into someone's face.)
Mr. Scruffy was also the reason the three rival resistance groups of Azure City united against Xykon. He was considered to be an omen of the will of Shojo's spirit. At first, the leaders thought that the leader should be Belkar who accompanied him, but then decided that Mr. Scruffy's tail pointed towards Ho Thanh.
The cat accompanied Belkar when the halfling left Azure City. Mr. Scruffy has since directly aided Belkar in battle, seemingly becoming the halfling ranger's animal companion and one of the few things he seemingly does not loathe entirely.
Scruffy figured prominently in Belkar's fever dream during his illness due to the Greater Mark of Justice.
Blood Runs in the Family[edit | edit source]
Mr. Scruffy appears to be a very violent cat, and during Belkar's battle in the arena in the Empire of Blood he ripped open the stomach of Belkar's opponent, Evisceratus. Evisceratus was almost a 2nd level commoner when Mr. Scruffy's evisceration made him live up to his name. (Belkar subsequently fed a guard with his intestines and pulled it out of the other end.) Mr. Scruffy was lifted back to his place with V by a judicious use of Bugsby's Cat-Retrieving Hand while Belkar told him to "chill with the big people".
After Elan, Haley, and V realize that the Linear Guild is still alive, they leave into an arcade where Polozius reveals himself as Zz'dtri. Mr. Scruffy flees and hides behind a pillar but is literally sniffed out by Sir Scraggly, his Rider Dog counterpart. His rider, Belkar's third counterpart Yukyuk shoots the cat with a crossbow and orders his dog to kill Mr. Scruffy, to which Mr. Scruffy flees from. Mr. Scruffy manages to lose and begins to hide, while Yukyuk opens Haley's Bag of Holding, before V begins to use him against Zz'dtri. Blackwing pulls out Roy's Belt of Giant Strength from the bag's treasure, and drops it on Mr. Scruffy, who had been found and cornered by Sir Scraggly. Mr. Scruffy knocks the dog through a wall and into the arena, which unintentionally made Thog even more angrier and allowed him to overcome Roy, who was beginning to overpower Thog.
Belkar, on the orders of Roy, escapes and finds Mr. Scruffy wounded, which he angrily looks around to find someone to hurt. He pulls out the bolt out of Mr. Scruffy and pours a healing potion into a bowl, which Mr. Scruffy laps. It is then revealed that Belkar saved Gannji and Enor due to him visualizing himself as Gannji and Mr. Scruffy as Enor, being forced to kill each other, while Roy comments off-panel that its like watching someone duel their own puppy. Back to the present, Mr. Scruffy purrs against Belkar, which he exclaims that a ranger is supposed to influence an animal's behavior and that Mr. Scruffy is doing it backwards.
During Belkar's encounter with Malack, Mr. Scruffy attempted to attack the lizardfolk vampire, but was unable to injure or even overly inconvenience the vampire. Malack spared Mr. Scruffy from death because he was a "faithful servant", comparing it to himself.
Utterly Dwarfed[edit | edit source]
While the Mechane lay at anchor outside the Northern Godsmoot, Mr. Scruffy, along with the other animal companions on the Mechane, Blackwing, Bloodfeast the Extreme-inator, and Little Whiskers were resting in Vaarsuvius' cabin when the vampire Gontor Hammerfell snuck on board to steal V's teleportation orb. The animals, led by Blackwing, attempted to thwart the vampire's theft, but were left facing a swarm of rats summoned by Gontor. Mr. Scruffy defended Blackwing while the raven read an arcane scroll. The resulting arcane mishap destroyed the rats, leaving Mr. Scuffy and the rest of the animals injured but alive.
Mr. Scruffy accompanied Belkar to Firmament to chase after the vampires. When Belkar became dominated by them and began to attack his friends, Mr. Scruffy tried to break Belkar out of the charm. Ultimately the cat was able to activate Belkar's Protection from Evil clasp on his cloak, which broke the domination. Either from the pain, or due to his barbarian rage ability, Belkar woke from unconsciousness and slew the vampire "Durkon", a feat which was only possible through the heroic act of his faithful animal companion, Mr. Scruffy.
Current Activities[edit | edit source]
Personality and Traits[edit | edit source]
Elan and Haley agree that Belkar and the cat both "averages somewhere south of neutral", and together with Bloodfeast the Extreme-inator the dinosaur/lizard he seems to be Belkar's only real friend. However, due to Belkar's influence on the cat, Mr. Scruffy has shown a more violent side, ripping open the stomach of Belkar's opponent, Evisceratus. The cat can however show trust to other people, alerting Durkon when Belkar and Roy were arrested.
Powers and Abilities[edit | edit source]
- Mr. Scruffy possesses all the normal abilities of a housecat.
- As an animal companion, Mr. Scruffy has the following adjustments to his base stats:
- +6 HD (total 6.5 HD, or roughly 29 hit points)
- +6 Natural Armor Adjustment (AC 20)
- +3 Strength and Dexterity
- 4 Bonus Tricks (only "attack" and "come" have been demonstrated)
- An empathic Link which improves Belkar's ability to handle the animal
- Share Spells (if Belkar had a high enough wisdom to cast them...)
- Depending on how many levels in the Ranger class Belkar has, Mr. Scruffy's stats may have additional bonuses. Belkar's total level is 16, but it is unclear how many levels he has taken in Barbarian, and how many in Ranger.
Equipment[edit | edit source]
Mr. Scruffy's possessions include:
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Mr. Scruffy is the most frequently appearing character in the comic outside of the members of the Order of the Stick.
Gallery[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- GiantITP Forum - Re: No love for Neutral alignments in OOTS, The Giant
- Good Deeds Gone Unpunished, p. 24
- Comic 780 "The Duel Everyone's Been Waiting For"
- Comic 781 "Companions"
- Comic 782 "Not Yet Met His Match"
- Comic 789 "Also, His Popularity Has Waned"
- Comic 792 "Animal Instincts"
- Comic 799 "In The Bag"
- Comic 803 "Saved by the Belt"
- Comic 807 "Wild Empathy"
- Comic 870 "Death in the Family"
- Comic #1126, "Battle Cry"
- Comic 732 "The Papers Chase"
- Comic #673, "Too Slow"
- Comic #1099, "Cool Will Be the Biggest Obstacle"