Tom-Tom was a minor wizard and a sworn brother of the Black Company who was its oldest member for many decades. He was nicknamed for the small drum which he frequently rapped upon to punctuate his speech. He and his blood brother One-Eye were small, ancient black men, both familiar with the art of illusions, having being tutored under the same master, N'Gamo. His magic was potent enough that he was capable of injuring a forvalaka – later revealed to be Shapeshifter – in Beryl. He also shared his brother's skills as a thief and con artist.
Before Croaker's Annals[edit | edit source]
Tom-Tom was One-Eye's younger brother by 1 year. They were born in D'loc Aloc, a vast jungle on the southern continent. As boys, Tom-Tom and One-Eye were sold to N'Gamo, a wizard of noteworthy magnitude who wanted them as his apprentices. Shortly after, N'Gamo attempted to destroy a young male forvalaka but failed, losing an arm and a foot in the process. Tom-Tom never forgot the experience.
The Black Company[edit | edit source]
By the time of the first book of Croaker, Tom-Tom is already a hundred and fifty years or so old (One-Eye was at least this old), sustained by his abilities as a minor wizard. He was one of the most valuable members of the Black Company both because of his vast personal experiences and due to his abilities as a wizard. While his knowledge of sorcery rivaled that of his brother, it is never implied that any of the Company wizards are more or less potent.
Tom-Tom then led a small party of Company men to Necropolitan Hill to investigate the rumored escape of a centuries-old forvalaka from the tomb. Upon arriving, he confirmed the fabled monster's existence, recalling his former master's costly battle with one of their kind. He knew this ancient and insane forvalaka which was now running loose in the city was even more dangerous than the young one that mauled N'Gamo so many years ago. He advised leaving it alone but was ignored.
Soon after, Tom-Tom presented a potential offer to the mysterious legate from the north (Soulcatcher), in an attempt by the Captain to break the Company's obligation to the Syndic. However, Tom-Tom was against taking the Company taking the commission, fearing their potential new benefactor's power. This may have factored into his subsequent fate.
A short time after, the forvalaka infiltrated the Bastion and rampaged through the Paper Tower. It seemed to be targeting the Syndic, the Company's employer. For a final time he pleaded along with his brother to avoid combat with the beast, but was again ignored. Instead the Captain ordered the Company to enter and exterminate the forvalaka. During the subsequent assault on the tower Tom-Tom was fatally wounded after he injured it with magic and became the focus of its rage. The monster bit his throat open and hideously mauled him. Croaker commented that he retained consciousness for some time before succumbing to death.
Less than one year later, after the Battle of Charm, One-Eye subjected the crucified forvalaka to extensive torture to avenge his brother.
Shadow Games[edit | edit source]
Many years after the events of The Black Company, One-Eye found evidence to support the idea that Tom-Tom had not been murdered by the Beryl forvalaka, but rather Shapeshifter (one of the Ten Who Were Taken). It fit the hypothesis that Shapeshifter had assumed the form of the forvalaka in order to kill the Syndic, thereby freeing the Black Company from their contract, which would allow the group to begin working for Shifter's close ally Soulcatcher. One-Eye realized this on the first night of the Battle of Dejagore, when he witnessed Shapeshifter using the form of a forvalaka. To avenge Tom-Tom, One-Eye killed Shapeshifter after the latter was rendered defenseless by Stormbringer.
|Black Company Wizards|
|One-Eye • Goblin • Silent • Tom-Tom • Raven |
Third • Lady • Tobo • Arkana • Shukrat