Deadlands Reloaded: The Weird West
Leo the Bear Popoff
Popoff is a Russian who started as a miner during the original Gold Rush and worked himself up to tycoon status. His moniker might lead you to expect a big, bruising man, but actually he’s a skinny little fellow who dresses in fine clothes and exhibits refined manners. He’s called the Bear because he has a habit of buying things when they’re going down in value and then cashing in when they go up again. Some kind of financial reference, I suppose. He does have a bearish appetite for other peoples’ property, however, and like a rabid grizzly, you plain don’t want to tangle with him. He has a habit of financing the projects of explorers, mad scientists, and fortune hunters, and then bushwhacking those who lead him to the wealth. Accordingly, there are a number of folks who’ve been burned by him that might pony up a little something to see the Bear finally caged.
Openly thumbing his nose at Grimme’s followers, Popoff possesses the Maze’s finest collection of occult artifacts. He claims they’re of mere scholarly interest and that the supernatural is all a mess of hogwash. You and I know different, of course. Popoff’s collection has made him a target of thieves. Robbers sneak in, but don’t sneak back out again; his 4th Street mansion is said to be filled to the roof with traps and hoodoo spirits.
I can attest to the fact that Popoff has quite the selection of talismans and other protective gewgaws. He’s the fellow to petition for a loan if you find yourself in need of such things—and as Pinkertons you will, sooner or later. Remember, though, that any deal made with Popoff has a catch, and he’ll probably obligate you to undertake a mission against Grimme, Lumme, or Deauville in exchange for his largess.