Alraune the Bloodrose

The very odd, very Outsider woman on an odd path of personal discovery

Description:

Rank: Novice
Race: Human (Northlander)

Attributes:

  • Agility d6
  • Smarts d8
  • Spirit d6
  • Strength d6
  • Vigor d8

Charisma: -2 Pace: 6 Parry: 5 (6) Toughness: 6 (10)

Skills:

  • Fighting d6
  • Notice d6
  • Stealth d6
  • Survival d8
  • Tracking d8
  • Sorcery d10
  • Knowledge: Magic d8
  • Knowledge: Cosmology d8
  • Knowledge: Flame d8

Languages: Abyssal, Childer, Fae, Galean, Goblinesh, Kal
Defining Interests: Demons

Gear:

  • Scythe (STR+d8; Reach 1; Parry +1; 2 Handed)
  • Dagger (STR+d4)
  • Rose Plate & Chain (+4/-4; Heirloom; Lightened weight)

Hindrances:
Outsider, Heroic, Phobia (Sleeping alone), Quirk (Self harm), Death Wish

Edges:
Heirloom (Armor), Education, Fast Learner, Contact (Raginard Spitzhacke), Woodsman

Powers:
Arcane Shield, Mind Reading, Phantasms, Silence

Essence: 10

Bio:

The Kal Empire is the most well-known force of Flame, but it is far from the only one; even through the conquerings and purges of milennia, some of the old tribes of the North survived, clinging tightly to their traditional ways. The Circle of the True Flame are a result of one such remnant, enhanced by expatriates from the Empire, the Elvish Nation, and the Goblinesh Gathers. They are a small but tenacious community of religious nomads, covering territory between Aralon Forest and Og’M Drakar.

The Circle worship Ceynara and the Demon Lords, but object to the Empire’s oppression of women and nonhumans. In their eyes, all who achieve the gifts of Power are equal; after all, Ceynara is a woman, and the Lords are like nothing in the land. This belief leads to an attitude of respect and cooperation among all within the variegated group, one that would surprise a Southerner. All races are siblings under the demons.

Two decades ago, at the end of Planting Moons, a few of the Circle enacted a ritual which had been years in the making. A dozen captive men- one of each race- were hanged. Their final, post-mortem emissions were collected together, then administered to a group of women chosen by the Circle for fertility and piety. The goal: create host bodies to house the demon lords.

Few of the chosen mothers conceived. Only two of the ritual offspring survived: Alraune, a human, and Aliruna, a brinchie. Both were tutored extensively in combat, their religion, and their duties, with the aim to make them perfectly fit in mind and body for their eventual surrender to the masters of the Abyss. It was expected, but not required, that they would become acolytes to complete their devotion to the Lords. Aliruna did; Alraune didn’t.

From the start, Alraune was strange. She saw things only the elvish did- the patterns of magic on the land. To her eyes, the Flame her family wielded was a distasteful mangling of the lines and shapes. In her free time, she began to play with things herself, gradually finding a more pleasing method of manipulating the forces. Her self-made sorcery was tolerated by the Circle as a manifestation of Power, though her feline brother was praised much more highly for his pious magic.

Her magic was not the only thing setting Alraune apart: though she knew better than to speak of it after an ill-advised line of childhood questioning led to heavy punishment, she never felt comfortable with the way of Flame: oppression of the outsider, life sacrifice, pain and torture. Still, the Circle was the only world she knew, the only family she knew, so she swallowed her objections and waited for the day when her body and spirit would separate.

Then, the Blue Aevakar appeared.

A small force of Southerners disrupted a ritual honoring the births of the host bodies. Among them, a young man with deep blue wings, wielding a magic she’d never seen. (She would later learn he was a druid walking Landra’s path.) At once, Alraune felt meaning and sensation pour into her formerly hollow life. Unsure how to react to the situation, she watched the battle around her with wonder.

The Circle were driven apart, into smaller factions, by the attackers’ brilliant tactics. Many fell. Then, an anguished cry: the aevakar had been shot down. The remaining Circle members in the area flocked to take him prisoner.

Alraune’s scythe cut them down quickly. She sttod before the man who’d disrupted her life, still as a statue, covered in the blood of her family. He took the opportunity, fleeing into the wilderness. Distantly, the sounds of battle faded, and the sound of Galean shouts carried across the sky. She was alone now, and the dizzying yawn of the unknown brought her to her knees.

A blue feather lay before her. Her mind seized on it, quickly spinning a thread of purpose from the scraps she had left. Her life had never been her own; this was no different from before, except now she had the choice of whom to sacrifice herself to. Rather than give herself to the Lords, she would seek death from the man with the strange magic and the feathers like twilight.

But first, punishment. She had taken down her own family. Sacrifice was required, blood to nourish them in the beyond. With a knife on her thigh, she began a ceremony that she would repeat hundreds of times: a cut for each body, blood into the ground. Then, she set out.

The Southerners had disappeared. Unable to return to the Circle, Alraune began a journey in search of her aevakar. Her new life was extremely difficult: though used to life in the wilderness, she was completely unaccustomed to being completely alone. This became particularly troublesome at night, when guilt and nightmares robbed her of any rest at all.

Very quickly, she learned to travel quickly, find settlements, and attach herself to anyone who would take her, offering whatever she could spare to earn a night sharing a bed with another body. Her quest took her through several Gathers and one Aeyrie, then into the Southern Kingdoms via western Olara. She incurred a heavy injury joining some native fighters against a squad of childer; this willingness to sacrifice herself for good caught the eye of a local armorer and artificer, Wolmarr Feuermann, who took her into his home to care for as she convalesced.

alraune.jpgWolmarr was very taken by the strange northern woman; Alraune did not feel the same, but was willing to share friendship and, as she healed, her body with him. Accepting that he couldn’t convince her to remain with him, Wolmarr did what he could to help her: he crafted a suit of armor to keep her safe in future battles, light enough for someone of her stature to wear. He presented it, with some smaller gifts, in exchange for a promise from her to exchange letters with him over her journey. Though unused to the concept, Alraune kept the promise, keeping him apprised of her movements, gradually developing her writing from terse and utilitarian lists to thoughts and descriptions.

As she journeyed deeper into the south, she learned of the Grey Rangers; quite a few civilians she rescued from childer, brigands, and other dangers encouraged her to join. Eventually, she made her way to Kythros, reasoning that it would be a good way to occupy herself (and to keep herself near other people at night) while she sought word of the Blue Aevakar.

Alraune the Bloodrose

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