Saturday, September 22, 2012

Character Background: Norah Lawrence

My family was prosperous in the Ashen Kingdom. My father came from a long line of traveling merchants, my brother and I were to continue the trade. However, when I was 10 years old my father got wind of a deal that sounded profitable. Supposedly a neighboring region was going to be adding more silver to their coins in the following months, the plan was to gather plenty of their currency before that happened; when the coins gained value my father was to reap the rewards. The nobleman who had traded the coins to my father had spread that rumor around, when my father realized what had happened it was too late. My family was bankrupt, and no one was willing to lend my father money to help him out. My father fell into a deep depression and ended up killing himself shortly after. My mother ended up working the streets in the seedy part of the city, some nights she wouldn't make it back home, when she did come back she was riddled with bruises. My brother took off after my father died, last I heard from him was that he had made it onto a cargo ship and hoped to someday have his own shipping business; for all I know his ship has sunk to the depths of the sea.
Since my mother wasn't the most dependable I found myself begging for food or money to buy food. There were many nights when I went hungry, and many more when the guards would chase me away. Begging wasn't enough though, it might put food in my stomach, but I needed more than just food to survive. I started stealing what I needed, usually from the vendors in the streets when they were distracted with a paying customer. There were some other kids that were begging and stealing to get by, sometime we would work together but we tended to keep to ourselves, it's easier to blend into the crowds when you are by yourself verses a group of shabby looking kids.
When I was 14 I had heard whispers of a rebellion that had been moving against the Ashen Kingdom. I found one of it's members after some round-about searching and talked him into letting me join. Jerrod warned me that it was a dangerous life, but I refused to back down. There was to be a task to see how committed I was to the cause, the task was more of a trial, one I almost didn't survive. There was a caravan of five wagons heading towards the Ashen Kingdom, I was told to steal one of the wagons full of supplies and destroy the others. I figured fire would be the best way to destroy the wagons as well as create a distraction so I could escape with the last one. I stole some matches and oil and made my way to where the caravan had made camp for the night. I had dowsed a fair bit of the oil on four of the wagons and had even lit two of them on fire before the guards noticed what was happening. I was in the process of lighting the third wagon when I heard guards yelling and running around rousing the wagon drivers. I started making my way towards the last wagon that was set to burn when I was spotted by a guard. He started to chase after me so I ditched lighting the third wagon and launched myself onto the one I had planed on stealing. I whipped the horse so hard I thought it would rear so far back and topple onto me, instead it took off into the night. This wasn't how I planned it, I had hoped to make off with the wagon while everyone was distracted with the fires, but I could hear the guards chasing after me. I was running the horse as fast as it would go, but it was pulling a wagon of goods behind it. I could see the horse foaming at the mouth from exertion and I was still quite a distance from the rendezvous with a the resistance. There was no way I would make it, desperately I looked around but saw nothing that would help my escape. Being captured wasn't an option, I would choose my own death before I would endure the guards torture until they decided to kill me. I saw the edge of a cliff to my left, I wasn't sure how far down the cliff went but I didn't see any other way out. I leaned forward and started to cut the ties used to tether the horse to the wagon, there was no sense in letting the horse die, if anything it was a liability to the plan since it could refuse to go over the cliff. I managed to loose the horse from its restraints and whipped it out of the way. The guards were yelling something at me but I was to occupied looking at the cliffs edge that was rapidly approaching. There was a moment of weightlessness as the cart sailed over the edge, then I was gripping onto the wagon as it plummeted, there were loud snapping sounds and bangs, then blackness.
I woke to footsteps shuffling towards me, my heart raced, I had hoped to die in the fall but it seems like that didn't happen and now the guards were almost to me. I started to move, then sucked my breath in when a pain in my chest shot through me. I reached up to my ribs and I new that I had broken some, not to mention my right leg started to throb. There were footsteps right next to me now, I looked up expecting to see the guard but it was Jerrod. He seemed surprised to see me alive and quickly called for the others to bring medical supplies. When he returned his attention to me I said “I failed, I only destroyed three of the four wagons... and this wagon's cargo might be useless after this fall”. He just chuckled at me and told me to rest.
I spent the next few months recovering, when I was fit enough to get around Jerrod showed me the ropes and helped me get set up with missions in the rebellion. I spent a lot of my time in the rebellion running smuggling missions, the benefit of this was that I was given a wagon and started a small trade route to cover for the smuggling. Jerrod used to joke about taking better care of this wagon than I did the last.
I traveled to many areas; and the trade business grew just a steadily as the smuggling business. All the while I was learning about new places and it's people. The people were easy to talk to, and it turns out I had a knack for swaying people. Not everyone is sway-able as it turns out, I've started as many fights as I have as many rallies.
The resistance has been sending me on more missions which in turns grows my merchant business. This is a huge step in reestablishing my families business, which couldn't make me happier... well that and sticking it to the Ashen Kingdom.

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