I am kicking off an Eberron D&D campaign that will have a Noir feel. The characters will all be Inquisitives working for a detective agency. I want each character to have a secret of ‘scar’, some sort of dramatic element in their past that can drive adventures. Secrets can either be truly secret (the other players don’t know about them), or just secret to the PCs (so the other players know about the secret even if their characters don’t).

With all that in mind, here are 20 secrets and scars for Eberron characters to spark your imagination.

  1. Injured Past: Your character sustained a grievous injury at some point in their past. This injury serves as a constant reminder of a tragic event or mistake.
  2. Haunted Memories: A traumatic event from your past continues to plague your thoughts, making it hard to focus during moments of stress.
  3. Addict’s Battle: Once addicted to a rare substance found in the underbelly of Sharn, your character has since been trying to stay clean. However, the cravings never truly vanish.
  4. Prisoner’s Mark: Wrongly or rightly accused of a crime, you spent time in one of Sharn’s grim prisons. The stigma remains even though you’re out.
  5. Blamed: You were held responsible for a tragic accident or misfortune, whether or not it was your fault. This event left a mark on your reputation.
  6. Heart of Glass: An intense romance from your past ended tragically, leaving your character emotionally scarred and wary of new relationships.
  7. Old Rivalries: There’s someone from your past, maybe in the towering heights or gloomy depths of Sharn, who’d love to see you fail.
  8. A Debt to Pay: You owe someone a huge favor. It’s not monetary, but when they come calling, it might be something that tests your morals.
  9. Tangled in Debts: You borrowed money from the wrong people in Sharn. Now, they’re frequently reminding you of your obligation, sometimes with threats.
  10. Shadow of Abuse: A dark chapter in your youth, you were a victim of abuse. This experience has influenced your character’s view of the world and interactions with others.
  11. Forced Crimes: You were once coerced into participating in criminal activities. Even though you’ve tried to distance yourself, your past deeds might catch up to you.
  12. Scandal’s Echo: Rumors of a scandalous event, true or not, involving you still linger in the gossip circles of Sharn.
  13. Lost Memories: A period in your life is a blank slate. Amnesia took away months or years of memories, and you’re still trying to piece together what happened.
  14. Marked for Death: Someone, for some reason, wants you dead. Every shadow in Sharn could be hiding an assassin.
  15. Outcast: Due to a fall from grace, certain influential circles in Sharn have blacklisted you, making social climbing a challenge.
  16. Blackmail’s Chains: Someone has dirt on you and isn’t afraid to use it. They could reveal your secrets to the world unless you do their bidding.
  17. A Forbidden Romance: You were once involved with someone you shouldn’t have been. The remnants of that forbidden love could jeopardize your current life.
  18. Stolen Identity: At one point, you assumed the identity of someone else, either for protection or deceit. The truth could be devastating if unveiled.
  19. Mysterious Patron: Someone has been guiding or protecting you from the shadows. You don’t know who they are or what they want.
  20. Ties to the Mournland: You have a direct connection to the disaster that created the Mournland. The secrets you hold might be valuable or dangerous to the wrong people.