Paladin of Farlanghan
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I guess first I should tell you about my family . I'm by far the youngest in my family, at least chronologically. My youngest sibling was almost 100 years old when I was born but I still call her my little sister.
I guess I should explain that so I have what I call an older brother and older sister and your brother and your sister even though they're all technically older than I am they’re Dwarves and they age differently than the rest of us.
For reference, my mother was 15 when I was born and my father was over 200. My older brother was more than 150 years old and my older sister was close to that. my younger brother was a little over a hundred and my younger sister was a little under a hundred
I guess I'll go with the order in which I met them.
Obviously the first one I met was my mother, and in case you haven't figured it out she is in fact an orc. And, as it turns out, a very attractive one. I have a story about that later. My mom never talks much about her family, mostly because she's not on good terms with them. I'm under the impression that they're a relatively wealthy and influential family in Viabhav, but I don't really know much about them. One time when we were in Viabhav, my father pointed my uncle out to me, and told me to stay away from him because he’d likely have me killed if he knew I was around. He blames me for the fact that my mother left the family though that was years before I was born. I’m pretty sure there was an arranged marriage involved, but I’ve never had the guts to ask. She’s a master blacksmith, so I’ve picked up a bit of it, but not enough to be useful. She’s also frighteningly good at fighting, an incredible singer and strong as an ox.
As you can probably imagine I was an unexpected surprise. I didn't meet my father until I was almost two years old. He accepted me immediately, which is no small thing. Thinking back, it’s amazing that his children accepted me as well as my mother into the family.
My father is a dwarf, a merchant at heart, and the black sheep of his family. In fact, his father disowned him when he found out about me. His family are relatively powerful Merchants, but he's much more interested in trade than politics. He always seemed kind of sad to me. I know he lost his first wife during childbirth when she was having my little sister, and I don’t think he ever got over it.. He’s only like that when I see him alone, though.. When he’s with his kids, he’s not exactly cheerful, but we seem to make him happy. When he’s around my mother it’s more than a little nauseating. And it not any better now that I'm older. though my siblings find it amusing..
My Grandfather on the other hand hates me with a passion. well he used to, he’s dead now. Not to speak ill of the dead but it's probably better that way. I think the thing that my parents had in common at the beginning was that they were both refugees from their families expectations. He did everything in his power to try to get rid of me, short of assassination. I think if I was ever in the capital, he’d have tried that as well. Obviously, I didn’t inherit anything.
The most influential person in my life is my older brother. At first I was afraid of him, but as I got older he became my hero. He's very calm, centered and self-assured, He's also very kind and an excellent judge of character. He taught me about the importance of roads, and it’s because of him that I’m a follower of Farlanghan. I'm never going to be a merchant, it's just not in my makeup but he was my idol and he's the person that I try to be. His instincts when it comes to people drives my father insane, because he frequently makes deals with people for future payment and or helps them out by just giving things away. But it always pays off. It may take a year, or it may take 3 years but he always profits in some way. He believes that investing in people will always generate the most profit. That’s the most important thing I learned from him. Now that my father has retired, he runs the Eastern route with his wife and four children.
My older sister is like a second mother to me, though she’s like that with everyone. She's probably the best merchant in the family. She has the ability to understand what people need and have, and a sense of how changes in the world affect them. It’s something every merchant needs, but it comes naturally to her. I think it’s because she, like my brother, sees customers as people.She's also notorious for taking people under her wing, essentially adopting them, which has caused some difficulties. She runs the Western route and has three kids of her own plus two that she adopted
My Younger brother is a piece of work. He’s attractive, knows it, and takes full advantage of it. He got into a lot of trouble when he was younger but he seems to have gotten over it or at least grown up some. Or he learned to hide it better, though his wife and kids have him wrapped around their little fingers. Neither my older brother nor sister were interested in being my grandfather's heir, but my younger brother is perfectly suited for it.
My little sister is ten parts smart and six parts rebellious. She always hated working the caravans, and would shirk her tasks to read, but she did love finding new books. She's the one that got me in the most trouble. She’s so much smarter than me that she’d make things that I knew were a bad idea seem like a good one. I know she's had suitors but none of them lasted very long. Last I heard she had started training in rune weaving but I haven't seen her since my father retired.
There's a story that I think explains how my whole family works. When I was a kid, my little brother made a move on my mother. They did get along really well, because they both have excellent singing voices. so he takes his shot. My mother shut him down and told him he had to tell my father what he did. He was scared shitless about what my father will do if he tells him, but he’s just as afraid of what my mother will do if he doesn’t. My father stares at him for a moment, then starts laughing uncontrollably. When my older brother pointed out to him that he should have learned by now that essing with a married woman is a good way to get yourself killed, he said, “They're not married”, which obviously came from my little sister. Then he got the real punishment. My older sister took him aside and gave him one of her talks. He was quiet for the next couple of days. but then everything went on as normal as if nothing had happened.
Years later after he was married, his wife met my mother. Someone (I'm not saying who but you can probably guess) told her the story, and she looked at him and said, “I can see why, but you never had a chance.”, and laughed. Needless to say, she and my mother got along famously.
I think they're all insane, but they’re family so what are you going to do?
My mother had a seer do a reading, and she said I'd never sire children, but I'd be surrounded by them. If you believe in that sort of thing. I have to admit, she's been right so far...
I learned to fight from both my mother and my older brother, though I take after my mother in my preference for hammers. The two light hammers I have were made by her as well.
I started traveling with caravans when I was around five. As I grew, I became more involved in the protection side, but never really took to merchant work.
My family is one of the founders and supporters of the Road Wardens, so I’ve spent a lot of time with them. That’s a large part of why I’m oriented toward protecting people.
I’ve been just about everywhere the trade roads go, through Felkor, Viabhav and Tubek. When I was younger I’d winter in Swee-Swee or at one of Road Warden schools, but I’ve been wintering in Watchers for the last 6 years.
I work as a guard, bodyguard or bouncer wherever I winter, though the first years in Watchers I spent some time doing collections and other unsavory things. I picked up some useful skills, but it never felt right, which is why I finally settled in as a bouncer.
Where did I learn:
Athletics: I've always been active and tend to walk more than ride. I also exercise regularly. I picked up the habit from my older brother.
Insight: Something I learned from my older brother and honed working in the streets and taverns of Watchers.
Intimidation: While people are intimidated by my size, I learned from watching my older brother that there's nothing as intimidating as being calm. Though my little sister's insane, confrontational style is a good fallback.
Medicine: One of the things I learned at the Road Warden school.
Nature: A gift from a Water Elemental in return for our help.
Perception: Between the constant dangers of travel and life in the rough parts of Watchers, I've learned that not paying attention can be fatal. If not to myself, to those whom I protect.
Performance: My mother could play almost every instrument, and my younger brother had a lot of talent. (I learned all the old ballads from my mother, the bawdy and drinking songs from my brother.)
Survival: Life on the road will teach you a lot about the land if you pay attention and listen to people with experience.