Dame Mercedes Valardin
If you have broken faith, oathtaker, you had best pray the gods have mercy on you, for I shall not.
Social Rank: 7
Concept: Righteous Inquisitor
Marital Status: single
Height: average height
Hair Color: dark, dark brown
Eye Color: gray-green
Description: Forge a woman from steel. Cast her features for strength, an image of Gloria in action: all jaw, all cheekbone. Then warm her to flesh, for this woman is altogether human. Her skin is warm and fair, occasionally spattered by dark freckling when she spends too much time in the sunlight. A dimple flashes in only one of her cheeks, and only when she smiles, which is not often. Her lips are thin, on the pale side, and rarely touched with color. Her hair is dark, dark brown, like the shadowed trunks in the depths of the woods, too warm and subtly reddish to be mistaken for black, but only just. Her eyes are pale, gray-green, like leaves through faded mist, of striking clarity and intensity beneath the stark, thick shape of her eyebrows. Muscle defines her lean but stocky frame more than any curves or softness, though neither curves nor softness are wholly absent.
Personality: Forthright occasionally to a fault, Mercedes brooks nonsense from no one and commands respect with her eyes and her name. She is a Dragon: an endless depth of passionate will seems buried beneath a surface rigid with strength. When she has determined that a thing is one way, based on reason or passion, there is simply no moving her. Her word is her bond and she will go to ridiculous lengths to keep a trust. Mercedes is an easy leader to follow, because she leads with her heart, from the front, no holds barred -- damn their spears, full speed ahead. Yet she is a good reactive thinker, tactically quick, decisive and fierce. She can be ruthless as well as reckless in the crunch, a woman who recognizes the need to get the job done and will do it, but her code of honor is the bedrock on which her entire self is built, and is wholly unshakable. She is not a woman of no smiles, but a woman of rare ones, and all those that come to her must be true and real, for there is no deception in her. Neither is she a woman without a sense of humor -- but it is reined in beneath her dignity, and escapes in mild, dry bursts, when it does so.
Background: Mercedes was raised as a princess of Valardin, a lesser line of a storied family. She was reared on myths and legends of heroism, with a spirit forged in righteousness and justice, with the high ideals of oathkeeping and faith being foremost in her heart. With other children, she played knight with a whole-hearted abandoned that occasionally got her in trouble for the violence of her assaults on imaginary 'monsters'. But she was also reared correctly, with a focused study of diplomacy and etiquette, and it was always known that Princess Mercedes Valardin would wed according to the needs of her family, as a princess should.
But, at eighteen, fierce and young and full of fire, she had other ideas -- not ideas of defiance to her family, at first, but ideas that developed that way as the game of marital politics veered more and more towards ideas that she found distasteful. The first match she refused was a Lycene one; it would have made her a landed noble, a marchioness, rather than a throwaway princess, but while the young man himself was perfectly unobjectionable, she drew the line at marrying into a house that worshipped the Thirteenth so openly and, er, lasciviously.
The second match she refused was a Thrax, an eminently suitable young man of the Royal House, who would have been her match in everything, but again she refused, because of her distaste for the Thrax. And as the second marital alliance fell apart around their ears, the Voices of House Valardin had to confront Mercedes with a choice: while no marriage could be forced as that would be a defiance of the laws of Limerance, she was being intransigent, and needed to remember her duty to her fealty and to her family.
"No," said Mercedes, "for I shall remember my duty to the Crown." And with that, the Princess Mercedes Valardin left her family and became simply Mercedes, a crownsworn commoner.
Mercedes Valardin arrived in Arx having cried off all her options, 22 and determined, with a jaw as hard as her will. She had little with her but a little silver and a sword. She served as a Champion for coin and glory for about a year, and eventually quit in disgust because the devil-may-care attitudes and general disreputability of her fellow Champions drove her to a kind of breaking point ... and that was when her sword, her eye and her determination brought her to the House of Questions. She began as a Confessor, but it was not long before she was elevated to the Inquisition instead, and took oath as a knight-inquisitor in service to the Crown.
|Martino||She is an Oathlander Princess with a sword. Honestly that is very scary to even think about, but, here she is. Strong views and values. I can appreciate that in a person for a diverse Compact.|
|Venturo||Reserved, with glimpses of more beneath. Such a carefully poised and thoughtful surface, with intriguing conversations. Color me overly curious.|