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Ridley Caldwell

The philosopher speculates on the nature of death. While she wastes her time with this endeavor, I intend to conquer it.

Social Rank: 7
Concept: Medical Pioneer
Fealty: Valardin
Family: Caldwell
Gender: male
Marital Status: single
Age: 34
Birthday: 1/17
Religion: None
Vocation: Scholar
Height: tall
Hair Color: black
Eye Color: green
Skintone: caucasian

Description: Tall, athletic, and in generally good health. Underlying depressive traits are masked by well maintained personal hygiene and appearance. No matter his audience, he can be found in finely tailored vests, jackets, and slacks. A silver pocketwatch is not uncommon. Shoes are polished and face is clean shaven. Propriety for propriety's sake.

Personality: Adversarial and agonistic toward ideological opposition. His enemies have described him as reckless and foolish; his allies determined and innovative. Empathetic toward his patients, the ill, and the downtrodden. Fiercely loyal to the Crown, Valardin, and House Moore. Assertive and opinionated. Always punctual and never inclined to refrain from speaking openly. Passionate defender of his beliefs, but rarely inclined to share his background with those who he does not know well.

Background: The son of serfs in service to House Moore, Ridley spent his early years planting crops and assisting in seasonal harvests. His mother took great care to ensure he was taught to read, write, and perform simple arithmetic. Lessons were conducted in between performing the various chores associated with growing up on a rural homestead. His fascination with medicine was birthed from watching his father deteriorate from a mysterious respiratory affliction that ended in bouts of staggering hemoptysis and shortness of breath. A local apothecary charged with tending to the dying farmer had speculated that "ill vapours" were responsible for the condition and recommended an aggressive regimen of bloodletting and the inhalation of aromatic incense. Although Ridley attempted to make his observations known to the healer, that the treatments appeared to magnify the severity of his father's symptoms, the apothecary insisted that they persist. Shortly thereafter, his father was buried in an unnamed plot east of Acorn Hill.

Ridley's mother did her best to persist, but she quickly found herself overwhelmed with a deep and complicated grief. Chores ceased. Dinner went uncooked. Daily instructions postponed. She rarely left her bed and stopped speaking. Unnable to cope, she eventually hanged herself from a willow tree in the neighboring forest. After seeing to her funeral, and having no reason to remain in the Oathlands, Ridley ventured to Arx and secured an apprenticeship beneath a scholar affiliated with the Physicians' Guild. Here he was introduced to the foundations of healing -- practices he openly disdained and challenged whenever the opportunity presented itself.

Theories were questioned. Hypotheses' rejected and tested. Dissatisfied with contemporary explanations and rationales, he drafted his own models and methods of treatment -- many of which pushed the boundaries of legality and professional ethics. This has resulted in some notoriety from academic peers (publications regarding nervous illness and "infectious" disease) and even the local guard (who suspects him responsible for bodies of the recently deceased being removed from their graves).

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