Breaching the Storm
Treasure hunter, info broker, all around smooth talker.
Our story begins twenty five years ago in the capital city of Undal, Tao. Lilly was a very sought after Companion in the city of Tao. Beautiful, smart and quite crafty she spent years providing company to the elite of Tao, and selling information she acquired during her time with the upper echelon, even catching the governor’s attention. Unfortunately that attention produced a pregnancy which was something the governor could not have.
Knowing that she was too well connected to simply have killed and buried deep the governor had to come up with a different option. With a combination of pleading and bribing the governor was able to get Lilly to agree to have the child outside the country. Still early in her pregnancy Lilly began her trip south with a single escort.
Lilly knew that despite his promises the governor would not allow an illegitimate heir to survive so she pushed as hard as she could to put as much distance between her and Tao as possible. During the trip Lilly and her escort, Tamerlin, grew quite close. He was the first man she grew to care for in a long time. A month or so into the trip Tamerlin revealed his true purpose to her; the governor had hired him to take them out of the country to have the baby and if it was a son to kill them both. Lilly was not surprised; she had suspected such from the governor. Tamerlin had come to care for Lilly too much to finish the contract but had decided that after Lilly had the baby that we would return to the governor with proof that the deed was done so she and the baby would be safe.
Eight months into her pregnancy they were passing through the town of Annesville at the head of a storm near dark when her water broke. With no idea where, or even if, there was a midwife in such an unscrupulous town and not trusting any of the inns Lilly and Tamerlin sought any shelter they could in the growing dark. The only shelter they could find lay outside town. There they found a large solitary tower with a single sealed door. While the door of the tower itself would not give they found a small barrack attached to the base of the tower and it did open after a rather stern request from Tamerlin. Inside the barracks was musty but clean and tidy. As Lilly entered the barrack something ethereal seemed to touch her tentatively and then surge through her and her unborn baby. Then the presence was gone and as it left Lilly went into labor.
As Lilly’s labor began so did the storm that had been building all afternoon. Her contractions where so intense she could not walk Tamerlin had to carry her to a bed. Lilly was in so much pain, it felt as though her baby was trying to tear its way out of her and her body was pushing it as fast as it could. Fighting through the pain she did her best to walk Tamerlin through the birth but eventually she could do nothing but push, breath and scream. The storm outside seemed to increase in intensity as the birth of her child grew near. After what seemed like an eternity Lilly heard the first cry of her baby boy. Tamerlin cleaned and wrapped the babe and placed it in the arms of its mother but he was very concerned, there was so much blood and Lilly seemed to be too weak. Despite her weariness Lilly was transfixed by her son; he had her brilliant blue eyes and his skin was unblemished except for a small blemish next to his right eye in the shaped like a shooting star or perhaps a fang. Lilly told Tamerlin that she loved him and thanked him for everything he had done for her and her child. She could feel herself slipping into unconsciousness and she didn’t think she would wake. With her dying breath Lilly gave her son his name, Venix, which meant falling star in the old tongue.
Tamerlin was devastated but knew he could not raise the child on his own. He searched throughout Annesville for someone he could leave the child with. Finally he found a widow who had just lost her own baby to sickness. Tamerlin offered her everything he had with him if she would take the child as her own, raise and protect him. She agreed, glad to help and to have something to blunt the pain of her own loss. Tamerlin asked that she keep the boy’s name and told her its meaning he then returned to Lilly’s body. With Lilly dead Tamerlin knew he could at least keep the appearance of his contract and through that act he could protect her son. After burying Lilly Tamerlin began his trek home promising that he would return to check on the child but he has not been seen in the area since.
Venix enjoyed growing up in Annesville. While he did not know his real mother the woman who raised him had shown him all the love she could. She often told him the story of how he came to live with her and told him where his mother was buried. He could make friends with anyone and learned to use his wits and personality to get himself out of his share of trouble. He regretted not being as strong or deft as some of the other kids but that’s what friends were for. He loved to spend time in the Market, listening to stories and rumors from other parts of the world. He also found it challenging to barter with the merchants that would stop at the Market to peddle their wares.
When he was sixteen Venix’s adoptive mother passed away from an epidemic that had hit the poor sections of Annesville. He did everything to earn the money to save his adoptive mother but most of the good paying jobs he couldn’t get; the stronger, tougher youths took all the guard jobs and trade apprenticeships. And while he had the skill to sell a warrior his own sword it was no way to earn enough money fast enough. His grief left him angry and bitter. He began to search for ways to make himself stronger. He’d heard stories of old magic that could grant wishes or reshape the body and he began to hunt the ruins around Annesville for clues to their whereabouts. He made his living by selling the things he would find on his hunts as well as information about where the ruins could be found. And so the youth grew into a man, his anger and bitterness has faded but he still searches for a way to become stronger to protect himself and his way of life. He’s well known throughout Annesville as a tough but fair trader, guide, and info broker. If there is something to know in or around Annesville Venix is the man to talk to.