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Approved WY bio for Torvus Arathel- FL CC'd


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Name: Torvus Arathel of House Schaim (pronounced Shah-‘yeem)

Age: 17

Nationality: Saldaean

Appearance: Torvus is of somewhat average height with a very slim build (appr. 5’8”, 140 lbs.).  He has somewhat long, black hair, usually tied back into a pony-tail.  His dark brown eyes are typically Saldaean, narrow and tilting slightly upward.  His face is thin and somewhat angular, smooth and clean save for one flaw; it is marred by a wide scar that goes across his upper right cheek from his ear to his hawk-like nose.  His voice is deep, thin, and usually monotone.  On horse, he rides naturally, but on foot, he walks bow-legged and with a slight limp, usually with the aid of a walking stick.


History: Torvus Arathel was born first son to Turan and Vahlera of House Schaim, a relatively minor noble House which once was great.  Their lands lie on the steppes of southeastern Saldaea, only two days’ ride from the border’s edge.  His father serves dutifully as a bannerman in the Queen’s cavalry, and from an early age Torvus desired with all his heart to follow in his father’s prestigious, martial footsteps.  His mother married into House Schaim, a well educated daughter of a well-to-do merchant.  While their father physically fits the dashing cavalry hero stereotype, it is often Torvus’s mother who possesses the real brains of the family.  She shrewdly manages the household and the family account with a tighter fist than Torvus’s father could ever manage, and their estate is in general expertly managed.  While Torvus admires both of his parents, his father was rarely around when he was growing up due to Turan’s occupation, and so Torvus tends to take after his mother, having a keen eye for detail and a creative, inventive mind.  


When he was fourteen, Torvus started training for the Saldaean arts of war on horseback, confident that he could earn the right to wear a sword in only a year or two.  Torvus had already been practicing acrobatics in the saddle since he could ride, but like his spirited new mount, Bastion, Torvus has a tendency to want to try the hardest, most dangerous maneuvers.  Two years past, and Torvus had just turned sixteen when he had his accident.  For his birthday, his father had gifted him with a magnificent charger, a stallion with a fiery spirit.  Torvus could not wait to show his friends what he could do, especially his ‘girlfriend’ Zanobia. While training with his friends (Zanobia watching expectantly) in a Cantabrian circle, he wanted to show off a move that only the Queen’s cavalry perfected for their parades.  He had seen his father do it a dozen times, nimbly slipping from the saddle, grasping the stirrups from underneath the horse while hanging upside down inches from the ground, and then just as quickly flipping and slipping back into the saddle again.  He thought he could do it just as well, but while underneath Bastion, the stallion shifted its weight suddenly to avoid an obstacle, and Torvus lost his grip with one hand.  


Trying desperately to regain his grip, one of the stallion’s back hooves struck his right leg with such force that he lost his grip entirely.  Trampled by another step from his own horse and all four hooves of the rider behind him, Torvus was almost killed and was bedridden for three months.  While most of his injuries healed, he never fully recovered.  His right upper cheek was almost split by a sharp rock, leaving a wide scar; his fractured leg never re-set quite right, and it causes him pain to walk on it.  However, the worst injury was to his right wrist.  While stiffly bound in a brace, the bones in his wrist fused together with his tendons, making him all but unable to open and close his fingers.  With his dominant hand maimed, unable to hold a lance or sword steady, Torvus could not hope to become a reliable soldier.  The physical pain of trying to recover was nothing compared to the mental agony of knowing that the life he desired most would never be his to enjoy.  It did not help that his love Zenobia had moved on, becoming betrothed to an older, stronger young man who obviously did not have Torvus’s ill fortunes.


A year passed, crawling by as slowly as a maimed slug.  For the pain of his injuries, Torvus became accustomed to all but drowning himself with alcohol.  Torvus has developed an addiction for fiery brandy and other strong liquors, and knows something of making such brews himself.  In his frequently drunken state Torvus was prone to increasingly dangerous bouts of depression.  Twice Torvus tried to end his own life, but each time his mother was there to save him.  She comforted him in his worst moments, and encouraged him to explore a new world, where his mind could take him places his body could not.


Previously he had barely paid attention to his studies, but now he dived into perfecting everything he could.  He read and re-read every book he could get his hands on, and learned how to write and perform other functions with his left hand, to eventually be just as good as his right. He started learning mathematics and geometry and how to calculate even complex problems in his head.  He learned to recognize myriads of different kinds of plants and animals.  His mother, always keen on innovating things, helped him to design a saddle and ladder of sorts for him to more easily mount and ride his horse Bastion.  


Close to when he turned seventeen, Torvus designed an arm brace, a sort of gauntlet which would allow him to open and close his right hand with a quick movement from his good hand.  He started using this device to be able to hold a bow steady while he shot with his left. While his power and aim would never be as good as if he had both hands whole, it was better than being completely defenseless, he reasoned.


His father, while sympathetic to his firstborn’s handicap, was usually away serving the Queen or protecting the Blight border, and once Torvus’s brother Davere, two years younger than he, turned fifteen, his father began to dote on him as the successor to his military lineage, taking Davere with him on campaigns.  While feeling abandoned by the man he once regarded as a perfect hero and jealous for his brother, Torvus said nothing about his feelings, and strode on diligently to the new path seemingly chosen for him.  His family had done too much for him to deserve even the appearance of being angry, and so whenever Torvus becomes angry, he tends to become still and quiet, trying to hide his emotions.  That is not to say he would not consider doing something about it later, though…


At age 17, Torvus’s mother insisted that he go to the capital to learn a new trade, giving him plenty of coin and provisions.  While she recommended taking a bodyguard with him, Torvus refused.  If he was going to do this, he would do it himself, without his parent’s protection.  And if he happened to be killed on the way, it would have been as the Wheel willed.  And so he travels alone to the northwest to Maradon, from village to village, trying to read new books and gain new knowledge as he goes.  While his heart is not entirely sure this is what he wants to do with his life, he will try to do his best to his family, and his mother suggested that he might be qualified to be a good scholar.  He still feels deep down the disappointment that his accident took from him.  If there was any way to be able to use both arms and legs again like old, Torvus knew he would do anything for that chance.  


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