He's a very unapproachable/scary sort of character, but I want an element that takes him down a notch and makes him a little less intimidating, even if only briefly. My idea was to make him adept at playing some sort of musical instrument, but because the story is set in a fantasy world, I'm not really sure how to go about doing that. I feel like it would probably be awkward to have him use a real-life instrument like a piano or a harmonica, so would it be better to try to just invent an instrument (that's obviously based on a real one) instead?
Or, since that idea is cheesy and unoriginal, what other sorts of props could I use to make him slightly less intimidating without going overboard? I don't want him to save a baby from a burning building or anything humanitarian like that.