A Quick Reminder
The Monthly Newsletter will be posted tomorrow. If you’d like to list any future plots for your character or let the group know of anything your character has been up to these past four weeks, be sure to fill out the relevant sections on the newsletter form and send it in.
Penitent Oath Breaker
THIRTY-EIGHT ; EX-RANGER ; HUNT, HORSESPEAK
Taro’s life has never been one that has afforded him comfort or ease. Born from a peasant mother and never knowing who his father was, though his mother told him it were a well bred lord, from an early age he took his families’ situation into his own hands. At the age of nine Taro began to apprentice under the local horse master as a stable boy; when he discovered his affinity to speak with the beautiful creatures. After four years of work his prowess with the breeding and maintenance of horses became known around the kingdom and the Royal Stable Master sought him out.
It was there, in those royal stables where he met, the not so old then, Ranger Richard. The two bonded over many nights of Taro teaching the man some riding secrets, that only horses knew. In exchange Richard taught him how to handle a sword, something that he’d never had to do. Over the years Taro became less concerned about his position in the stable and began to turn his eye to the Rangers. After secretly training for over a year, on his eighteenth name day, Taro went on his first run with the Rangers that secured his place among them.
For six years Taro worked diligently amongst the Rangers being out on every venture and excursion. Until that fateful day when winter fell across Nore… he was in that cave with Theo and Lavinia Gardener, along with the rest of the Rangers who were out. As soon as the only man he’d known to lead his faction fell to the cold, the man lost all hope. Lavinia got the men through the six months in that icy hell but Taro was not there when the time for their escape came. Breaking his oath and deserting his fellows, Taro Abernathy ventured out into the wilds of the Mountains, thought to be dead.
Fourteen years. Fourteen years the oath breaker dodged Ranger patrols and managed to keep winter at bay with short excursions into the forest to hunt and a canny ability to find shelter. As his eyes look towards the years of his twilight Taro wishes to return home and make right what he’s done. So now, all of these years later, Taro returns to beg for forgiveness from a faction that once he called home and a King whom he’s broken an oath to.
Taro’s exterior has been made hard by his lot in life. It’s difficult to get underneath the old codger’s skin and in most cases he responds to all manner of unpleasantly with a few scraps of dry humor and a sarcastic smile. However if one does manage to get under his skin, beware. Never one to let go of a grudge, he may not have his rebuttal today, or even in the year, but it will come… and when the hammer falls, it falls hard.
It is loyalty that curbs the heart of a barbarian into that of a soldier. Taro knows this and feels the deepest remorse for losing his faith in the Rangers that day in the cave. In his every action there is some desire to right wrongs… some spark inside him that wishes to fix problems that are not even his own to deal with. His disloyal past spurs most of his interactions and his need to regain his personal honor and mend the wounds that he has caused is paramount.
Surprised was he on that day he tried his hand at the sword… all of his strikes rang true as if he’d born the blade his whole life. The Hunt Magic was never wasted with Taro and may have been the only thing that kept him alive in his self-imposed exile. Without his heightened ability to track and shoot there is no doubt that the Ranger would have starved or froze in the Mountains in those years.
Horsespeak has earned Taro, and his family, their bread for many, many moons. He views the equine race as more of companions than mounts or service animals. Even today spending time utilizing this magic puts him at peace. Taro spent many days, whilst in hiding, traveling from village to village taking care of horses in exchange for food and shelter.
Brilliant, Levi! We loved reading about Taro Abernathy, and we’re glad to see everything got sorted in a very timely matter. We’ll get to setting up his character card now. In the meantime, please make Taro’s account within the next two days, and have the ask box open. Welcome to Winterlocked!
I’m afraid not. Every magical beast is considered fairy tale in the world of Nore, save for the dangerous Fey in the black forest. They, however, are NPCs, as it would be all but impossible to include them in any plots, considering they do nothing but attack and kill those who come into the forest. Apologies!
If you like, however, we have a number of shapeshifters and witches available for play, including Thane Frell, Nora Black, Pyrrhus Cairen, and Molly Parande. Here’s hoping one of them catches your eye!
The Bathwater Girl
FIFTEEN ; CHAMBERMAID ; FIRE
Pippa was born in the Obsidian Palace as the daughter to a family of servants. She was raised within its walls, rarely leaving the grounds so she could tend to the dying garden, help her mother in the kitchen, or water the horses when her father was busy. But for the most part, she was given the easy jobs, heating the baths of the royal family and cleaning out their chamber pots.
She was about twelve when she followed her sister Maryam out of the palace one day and down to the home of the young blacksmith Robbie, still an apprentice at the Pippa was caught eavesdropping quickly, but under the solemn oath to keep everything that was said a secret, she was allowed to take part in the plans of revolution. Pippa hung on every word, learning everything she could and doing everything Maryam asked of her.
She came to fully support Robbie’s ideals - mostly because she wants to be princess herself. She doesn’t completely understand what a revolution would do to the kingdom, and she certainly doesn’t want to overthrow the royal family, but Pippa isn’t the smartest one in the group. Likely, she never will be. For the most part, though, Pippa goes through life best she can, keeping her spirits high and doing everything she can in as little time as possible. And if it comes time for civil war, she will have to pick a side and come to terms with what she’s been encouraging all this time.
Pippa is sweet and very head-strong, a natural born leader if not for her air-headedness, but at the same time, she can be shy and jealous. She dreams big, and does everything she can to make her dreams come true. However, there is one thing she can’t do, and that is to become a true princess.
She knows it’s wrong, but Pippa can’t help but hold the Caddocks in contempt for simply being born into great wealth, while she can do nothing about it. Still, Pippa finds them pleasant enough people and is torn between admiring and hating them. She is very influenced by other people’s opinions, and all the controversy and contradiction in her life makes it even harder to come to a decision at all.
One of the most common magic types in the world is fire, and Pippa’s family all has it. It is one of the reasons they’ve lived in the castle for so long, keeping fires lit and bathwater hot. Pippa herself uses it to heat the princess’ bathwater whenever she is called to do so. Her magic is weak now, but by the time she’s eighteen, it’s likely she’ll be able to create roaring fires from the tip of her smallest finger.
The One and Only Huntress
TWENTY-EIGHT ; RANGER CAPTAIN ; HUNT
Lavinia has been fighting since the beginning. She arrived in Nore with her father, a trader from the south, years and years ago. She doesn’t quite remember how old she was at the time, but she was young and very sick. It was in the middle of a winter, a normal winter, but the poor girl was too weak to accompany her father back to their home in the south. She was taken in by her uncle, Theo Gardener, the captain of the Rangers at the time. Under his guidance, Lavinia became strong and fast, honing her skills with the crossbow and sword. By the time she was ten, she was accompanying the Rangers on missions, much to the men’s chagrin.
Four years into her hunting, Lavinia had become one of the best hunters, despite never having officially become a Ranger. She had studied the migration patterns of all the game animals, learned just how to hunt and capture anything she might come across. In spite of everything, or maybe because of it, Lavinia had become accepted amongst the Rangers, respected and valued as a member of the team. There was talk of going to the king himself and asking him to allow her to become a ranger, woman or not. The first blizzard came while Lavinia was out on a hunt. The Rangers were deep into the Black Forest, almost out the other side when the snow started to fall and the winds started to blow. They huddled together in a cave to protect against the cold, but there was nothing to be done. Food disappeared, men froze to death, and almost no-one could keep a level head, especially when Theo fell victim to the frost.
Lavinia took charge before chaos broke out. She barked orders, braced herself and others for doing anything they had to do to survive, and for six months they stayed there, a team of forty now a team of three – Lavinia herself, and two young boys, Christopher Braxton and Alistair Henry, now her two most trusted friends and second-in-command. Since the blizzard, Lavinia became an unofficial leader of the Rangers, and she was officially given the position by the king at eighteen. There is hardly any dissent among her team for having a woman as a leader, as everyone knows the bravery she showed thirteen years ago, and she has earned respect around the kingdom.
Order. Order and sensibility and taking no nonsense from anyone. Lavinia has her life in order. She knows what she wants and how to get it, regardless of any situation she might find herself in. Everything has its place, every action has a time, and Lavinia thrives on knowing when and where anything would be appropriate. She is nothing without her order, and it shows in how she leads the rangers, which happens to be very efficient, to be sure. She demands respect, but gives praise where it is earned, and punishments just as well. Nothing is more important to her than her Rangers, and whenever they’re out, she takes great measures to make sure everyone comes back alive.
Outside of work, however, Lavinia is a fairly quiet person. She has problems dropping the professionalism she carries with her around the rangers, which has made it hard to befriend many people. She tells herself that it’s not a problem, that her job is more important than anything, but really, no-one sees through the lies.
There is no wasted skill among the rangers when it comes to Magic of the Hunt. Lavinia takes no chances when she’s out in the Black Forest, and often takes advantage of the extra coordination while walking around town. She never misses a step, nor does she miss a shot. Already skilled with a bow and arrow, magic of the hut only makes her all the more impressive.