Have you ever wanted to play a character that knew a lot of information, be it about monsters, old lore, legends, history, or even life, the universe, and everything?
Most people will point you to a bard.
What if you don't want to be some spoony bard, all singing and music playing? You could tell everyone that you have a dark character, that sings dirges and gives dirty looks, but nobody would take you seriously, you're just the spoony bard, bein' spoony.
But if you were to look through some of the source books for 3.x you might find the Archivist. Archivists are seekers of dark lore and knowledge, they are similar to clerics, mostly in spells they are able to cast, though they can cast any divine spells, given that they can find a scroll of it. The class's abilities have to do with knowledge, for example, dark knowledge lets them give their allies bonuses against certain monsters based on knowledge checks based on the type of creature. Its an interesting class, and when I next get a chance to be a player, I will definitely consider it, even if its 4th edition.
Which brings me to the whole point of this post- a character idea
A lawful neutral archivist, the leader of his group of good aligned characters, even though he is borderline evil. He is not really evil, he wouldn't kick a puppy... Not if he was not benefiting from it anyway. He is the party's leader in the sense that he makes sure they get paid. Sure they can do whatever they want, but if they won't be well paid or have somewhere to loot, he directs the party to greener pastures if possible, and follows along unwillingly if there is no gain in terms of money, powerful items, or knowledge. For all of these things give him more power.
Now, if you excuse me, I have a druid playtest to read up on.