Character Name: Vaen Swiftar
From "Childhood" To "You Are Free"
Chapter 1: Childhood
Vaen Swiftar was born into a family of honor in the small town of Minoc. He was always taught to honor his commitments, whatever they may be. He was taught to make "giving his word" something that all who know him can believe in. But most of all, Vaen was born and raised to be a man with the heart of a lover, and the strength of a fighter.
Like most children, Vaen enjoyed being outside with his friends. His best friend, Marcus Stanim, would frequent the Swiftar house from a nearby city called Vesper. His father, Gerta Stanim, would accompany Marcus in order to protect him on his way. In the many visits that Gerta had to the Swiftar Property in Minoc, Gerta became very fond of the land. He seemed jealous in the sense that he did not have such land around Vesper. It became very apparent that Gerta was very interested in owning the land.
Marcus and Vaen would sword fight eachother at the age of three. They were playing with some dulled knives that Firal Swiftar, Vaen's father, had made for them.
These two were the best of friends, and everyone thought that this bond could not be broken.
One day as Gerta Stanim was coming to retrieve his son Marcus from the Swiftar's, Gerta seemed a little strange. A slight twitching in his head that was never there before was now very apparent. As Pryat, Vaen's mother, answered the door, she was quickly met with a blade through her chest. Firal and Vaen ran to her in time to catch her body, but the blade had done enough damage already, for she was dead. Gerta grabbed the sobbing Marcus, and quickly ran off towards Vesper, screaming, "This land will be mine!"
Chapter 2: War of Families
Wake up, eat, train, rest, train, eat, and sleep. This is the routine that Vaen had lived by ever since he was eight years old. His older brother, Talen Swiftar, tried to convince Vaen that hand to hand combat is not the best way to go about things. Talen had taken in the art of animal care, and was very familiar with forming mutual bonds with even the strongests of beasts. Vaen, however, was not interested. He believed that if something were to be done out of revenge, it would be done by the person themselves.
Vaen wanted more than anything to join the ranks of the war. He watched as some of the Swiftar Family and their friends charged into battle against some of the Stanim Family and their friends, and dreamed about how glorious battle was. Vaen simply could not wait until he got his first kill.
Years passed, and Vaen was now seventeen. He quickly joined in the ranks of the war, eagerly awaiting his first battle. But no Stanims came, not for weeks. Had they finally given up?
One day, while Vaen was doing business in a provisioner's shop in Minoc, Gerta and Marcus were walking about. Gerta just looked at Vaen and smiled, and then patted Marcus on the back. Marcus gave a weak smile, and started to walk towards Vaen.
"Vaen... arm yourself."
Marcus sighed. "Vaen, arm yourself."
Vaen nodded in disappointment, knowing that neither him nor Marcus wanted to continue with this. They walked outside to the eastern wall of the bank. Both of them armed their swords, and squared off. Marcus charged forward, slashing at Vaen's right shoulder, but Vaen quickly dodged it and struck Marcus in the back with the butt-end of his sword. Marcus groaned, but quickly recovered and they squared off again.
"Kill him, Marcus!" yelled Gerta from the side.
Marcus nodded slowly, closing his eyes tight. He then took another charge at Vaen and slashed at Vaen's left hip, but Vaen jumped back and quickly struck Marcus with the flat of his blade, causing Marcus to fumble backwards. Marcus, now getting irritated, charged once more with his sword out infront of him. Vaen dodged to the side and swung his blade around, just barely missing Marcus. Marcus quickly turned and slashed diagonally towards Vaen's chest, but Vaen put his arm up in defense, and the blade ripped through Vaen's armor, causing a large gash to form in his arm. Vaen groaned, and looked at his arm, and then looked at his old friend. Vaen realized that this was not going to end with him and his old friend walking away laughing. No longer was this a playful fight. This was a fight to win. Vaen tightened his grip on his blade and charged towards Marcus, swinging with all of his might. Vaen slashed at Marcus's left arm, his right leg, and at Marcus's head, causing gashes in his limbs and cutting off Marcus's left ear. Marcus cried in agony, dropping his sword. Vaen quickly dropped his sword and went to the aid of his friend, hoping that he was wrong and that Marcus and he would once again laugh with eachother. As soon as Vaen went to look at Marcus's ear, Marcus pulled a daggar from his boot and stabbed Vaen in the shoulder. Vaen shouted, and grabbed the daggar from Marcus, and stabbed him in the heart, killing him. Vaen turned to Gerta, who already had his mace ready, and was quickly struck down by a fierce blow to the back.
"How does it feel to kill your best friend, Vaen?"
"No....Better....than to....send...your son....to death...."
Gerta laughed, and lifted his mace high in the air, but just before he could swing it down on to Vaen...
"Swiftare, Kill!" screamed Talen from the north. A large white wyrm, Swiftare, Talen's best beast, flew down and tackled Gerta, and started to bite at his limbs and trample his body. Within a few short seconds, Gerta was lifeless, and the war had ended. Vaen looked up at his brother, and nodded at him, grasping his wounds. Vaen tried to apply bandages, but the pain was too great. Talen took Vaen back to their home, where Vaen would rest for weeks to come.
This was the end of the War of the Families. Although it was a great victory for the Swiftar family, it fell heavily upon Vaen, who had no idea that his first glorious kill in battle would be the moment in his life he would have nightmares about for eternity.
Chapter 3: Aftermath
With the Stanims no longer a threat to the Swiftar family, they were able to set up businesses all around Minoc. Firal headed these businesses as a front for the family's main income.
Soon enough, the Swiftars had more money than they knew what to do with. With the money, Vaen managed to buy a large piece of land, where he would soon construct his first keep, Talen decided it was time he bought himself a suit that would limit his need for reagants, and Firal purchased himself one of the most powerful ancient smithing hammers known to man.
With a good amount of free time on his hands, Vaen decided that training himself would be the only logical thing to do. He managed to pull himself into the deepest pits of Dunegeon Doom to combat some of the world's strongest monsters in order to improve his swordsmanship. It took weeks, but Vaen had managed to pull himself to be known as a Legendary Swordsman. In the process, Vaen had learned a great deal in healing, battle tactics, and general anatomy. He knew that all of this new knowledge would only make him a better warrior.
Chapter 4: Crystal Fens
Vaen had acheived his goal at becomming one of the most skilled swordsmen in the world. However, this was a little known fact. No one knew who Vaen was, or what he wanted. No one really believed in him, except for one person.
During the small encounters with the mysteroius man known as Odric, Vaen had come up with many theories as to who this man is, and how he came about. However, he didn't have anyone to share these ideas with. Vaen had done some research, and found that there was a lady named Tiffany Case, Emissary of Crystal Fens, who would be interested in his ideas. Vaen has sought out this woman, and explained his ideas. She seemed fascinated by them, and asked Vaen's thoughts on other events that would happen throughout the days.
Tiffany Case had informed Vaen that Crystal Fens was in need of some good Knights to protect the Kingdom. Vaen, realizing that he has been in a war-like situation before, eagerly offered to join the Knights. Tiffany was pleased, and immediately accepted him.
Vaen is now the Grand Commandant of the Knights of Crystal Fens. He has earned respect amongst many people across the land, but has also made quite a few enemies. He will let no harm to come to the Kingdom if it is within his power to prevent it, and he will let no dark followers triumph in the end.
Chapter 5: Legion of Justice
It was a dark, fall night. The only light in the area were given off by two lamp posts at the front steps to a nearby house. Outside stood Valatin and Lady Rachel, watching as Vaen Swiftar stood above a small fire, holding his Crystal Fens Grand Commandant Sash. The only sounds to be heard were the crackling of the fire, and the birds of the night. Vaen sighed, and closed his eyes tightly as he let his sash fall into the fire. Valatin looked over at his troubled friend.
"The Fens has become tainted, and their actions are no longer brought forth to better the world, but rather to better themselves. A Stained Purity, if you will." Valatin said.
"He's right, Vaen. All of us loved the Fens, however it just wasn't working out. Those in power got selfish, and used what they had at their disposal for personal gain. They are not the same people we grew to love." Lady Rachel said.
Vaen looked up at them. "The Fens' people were good people. However, I steadily lost my trust for their Emissary and their Queen. Some day it will all turn back to normal... hopefully."
Vaen turned and went back into his house. Rachel and Valatin followed, their heads both lowered. Vaen had been Grand Commandant of Crystal Fens Knights for some time, and this fell heavily upon his shoulders
"A new guild must be formed. We cannot let people all over do wrongs at high intensities and get away with it. Justice must be served, if I swear it upon my family name." said Vaen
"A new guild?" Valatin said. "Methinks that is a little hastey..."
"Justice waits for no one."
"Justice..." said Lady Rachel, deep in thought.
"What are you saying, Vaen?"
"There are plenty of "Good" and "Evil" empires, city-states, and kingdoms out there. All of them have their reasons, and their ways of carrying out their plans." Vaen said. "However, none of them battle for whats right."
"Vaen, you're letting your emotions overwhelm you. I'm sure there are other orders out there who try to enforce justice and--" Valatin was cut off
"Then where are they?!" Vaen screamed. "How can a guild of Justice be so blind as to what is going on? I'm not looking to change the world here, Valatin. There are a lot of nasty people in this world, and there are many people out there who are committing criminal acts and are getting away with it."
"Are you referring to Alexander?" Valatin curiously asked.
"No. However, Alexander did not commit the murder people claim."
"Do you have any proof of that? We would look like fools if we had nothing to go by..."
"Aye, we would." said Lady Rachel.
"Listen to me." Vaen lectured. "Alexander is of pure heart. He would not murder someone he loved so dearly, can you not understand that?"
"It did seem rather odd..." stated Valatin, "what are you suggesting?"
Vaen thought for a moment, then perked his head up. "A Legion of Justice. A new guild of Britannia set out to bring justice to those who commit intense acts of wrong. We won't be hunting those who steal bread at the common market, for that is not a wrong of much intensity. I am speaking of, for example, the Stormreaver Orcs."
"Ahhh, indeed." Valatin agreed.
Lady Rachel thought for a moment, "Mmmm... Orcs..."
"In my career as a Commander of Crystal Fens Knights, the Orcs have captured and sacraficed both a defenseless princess and a child to their Bludgod. Such things cannot go without punishment!"
"I agree!" said Rachel, nodding. "The killing of women and children is certainly wrong."
"We will call ourselves the Legion of Justice. Something needs to be done, my friends. And while there may be only few of us, our ideas will expand into minds, and hopefully other orders of similar purpose will form."
"The hardest layer of a house to construct is the foundation. From there, everything falls into place." wisely stated Valatin.
Vaen nodded, and the three of them ascended to the next floor, where they would work out plans for this new Legion.
Chapter 6: Luna Battles
The Dark Order had been threatening a raid on Luna for quite some time. Along with them, the Drow and the Stormreaver Orcs have set up camp outside the outer walls of Luna. Talk has been around that they will be raiding, so Sanctus summoned up their allies and stationed them around.
Among those alliances, the Legion of Justice were included. Though very small, the powers of Valatin, Rachel, and Vaen would prove to be great indeed.
As soon as battle noises sound, Vaen led the three to scout the outer wall. As nothing was seen, they traveled to the North gate, where numerous opponents met them. Instantly, the Legion of Justice used tactics that the opponents were not ready for, and instantly several of them fell.
Throughout the battle, the Legion of Justice proved to be a force to reckon with, taking a kill count of twelve, while having all of its members surviving. Among the many killed were Beldon, Tarothin Armunn, Icarus Darwin, and Joseph Galigore.
This day, there was no clear victor of the war. However, the Dark Order and their allies were unable to fully penetrate the outer wall, and will be forced to try again at a later date.
Chapter 7: Possession
Vaen recalled into his front lawn after just waking up from a wonderful night. He smiled, and started walking towards his front door. Behind him, he felt a presence. He felt a little uneasy, so he quickly walked into his house and closed the door. Glancing around, he walked forward and turned around facing the door. From the door, emerged a figure in a hooded shroud. Vaen's eyes widened and his jaw dropped. The figure moved slowly towards Vaen. "W..Who....what.... are you?" Vaen asked.
Vaen backed away towards the west side of the house, but the figure turned and followed him directly. Vaen quickly ran to a teleporter and teleported to the top floor. He watched the teleporter, just to make sure the ghost didn't follow. He smiled, seeing that the ghost didn't appear on the teleporter. He turned, only to be startled by that same figure, which was close enough to smell his putrid breath which reaked of soil and decaying corpses.
Vaen gathered himself and stood up, and looked at the figure. "Who... are you?"
"Vaen... remove my hood..."
Vaen reached to the figure and removed his hood. At the moment he saw the figure's face, his heart dropped. Even through the small pieces of flesh that just barely hung from the bone on the face of this figure, he knew who it was. It was his old best friend whom he was forced to kill a couple years ago.
"You killed me, Vaen..."
Vaen moved his mouth, but no words came out. His eyes grew wider as the figure reached out for Vaen.
"Join me... Vaen... Join your old best friend..."
Vaen shook his head, and took a step back.
Behind Marcus, two other hooded figures appeared. They removed their hoods and stared right at Vaen. It was Tyrun and Gerta, Marcus's uncle and father. They all started laughing at Vaen, and moving towards him. Vaen backed up slowly. "Stay back...!"
They ignored him, and continued moving further. At that moment, both Talen and Firal, Vaen's brother and father, came to the top floor to look on to the shadowy figures in horror.
"Gerta...." Firal said, staring blankly.
Gerta smiled. "So, Firal, we see eachother again. Hopefully you can forgive me for killing that wench of yours, mmm?"
"He should thank you, Father. She was a low-class harlet. Who in their right mind would marry a miner, anyway?" Marcus said, chuckling.
Firal grew in anger, but stayed back. He clenched his fists, staring at Gerta.
Talen stepped forward infront of Vaen and Firal. "Go back from where you came from."
"And who is going to make us leave?" Tyron said, laughing slightly.
Talen glanced around, thinking for a moment. "Marcus, you've caused Vaen enough damage. He's your old best friend, don't you th---"
"He killed me! He caused my death. Is that was best friends are for? I think not!"
Vaen looked at the three of them and narrowed his eyes. He pushed himself forward and charged at the three Stanims, only to pass right through them and fall on the ground behind him. The three of them laughed, and then disappeared. Vaen groaned. Firal and Talen walked over to Vaen, helping him up.
"You alright?" Firal asked.
Vaen nodded. "What's going on?"
"Not quite sure..." Firal mumbled.
"We're going into hiding Vaen. Until we can figure something out." stated Talen.
"What?! I'm not going to hide from anything."
"Vaen, it might be for the best..." Firal added.
"You don't understand Vaen, this is for your best interest." Talen urged.
"Talen, will you let me live my own life just for once? I'm nineteen, I think I know what I'm doing from time to time."
"Besides, if we go into hiding, that's just giving the Stanims time to gather and grow in power." said Vaen.
Firal looked to Talen. "He's right..."
Talen nodded. "Fine, Vaen. Do what you want." Talen walked off and made his way to the first floor.
"Be careful, Vaen. You hear?"
Vaen nodded. Firal made his way to the first floor as well. Vaen walked to the edge of the top floor and looked south, down the grasspath to the backroads of Vesper and Minoc. In a distance, he saw the three figures form once again. They all waved to Vaen, and Vaen narrowed his eyes. A deep, echoing laugh could be heard as two of the figures disappeared. The final one disappeared within seconds after the other two, and reappeared behind Vaen. Vaen turned around and looked through the hood to see Marcus again. Marcus laughed, and walked into Vaen. Vaen's body shook, and his eyes rolled into his head. He fell to the ground. Firal and Talen, hearing the thud, ran up.
"Vaen, are you alright!?" Firal asked.
"Vaen...!?" Talen said, worrying for his brother.
Vaen laughed. "Talen! Fir--Father, I am well. Worry not!" Vaen let out a deep laugh as he stood up.
Firal glanced at Vaen. "You sure?"
Vaen nodded, grinning oddly. "Of course I am sure, would I be standing if I were not?"
Vaen glanced around the top of the roof, taking note of his surroundings, as if he had not been familiar with it before.
"Vaen, you seem... different... are you sure you're ok?" Talen asked.
"Talen, I am no different, I can tell you this. Now, go back down to the first floor with Father, and let me gather my thoughts, mm?"
Talen nodded slowly, examining Vaen, and then took Firal down to the first floor with him.
Vaen watched as the two of them left the area, and then turned back to the long grass patch. Two of the figures appeared once more, and waved to Vaen. Vaen nodded, and waved back. Then, the figures disappeared once more. Vaen grinned, and turned back to head down with his family.
Chapter 8: Not Quite Himself
While Marcus was in control of Vaen's body, he managed to pull off some very nasty deeds. All of them would later come to haunt Vaen.
The first thing Marcus did while in Vaen's body concerned a girl named Jolicia. She was in the Brotherhood of the Hand. Marcus tricked her into going to the Brotherhood Garden of Sin and Pleasure, where he tricked her into getting naked. They were sitting in a hot tub, alone. They then went to the heating room, where Marcus confessed he wasn't Vaen, and attempted to force himself upon her. Vaen, being very distraught inside of Marcus, built up enough emotional anger and caused Marcus to feel much pain, allowing Jolicia time to escape.
Another thing Marcus did while in Vaen's body was swear death upon Isilmea, a very respected Elven woman throughout the community. Although he was instantly jailed for making such a threat in the open, he managed to escape. Despite his efforts in hunting her down, he was never able to find her alone.
The last main thing Marcus did while he was in control was fight an entire Sanctus army. Using Vaen's strength, Marcus was able to take down five Sanctus army members out of twelve, before having to retreat. Sanctus was very angered by this, thus issued a Kill on Sight order of Vaen.
All of these actions would later come to haunt Vaen, and eventually destroy any hopes he had of gaining a good repuation once again.
Chapter 9: You Are Free
One day earlier, Silent Poet had peaked Marcus's interests in telling him he can free him. He can give Marcus full control. "Full Control..." thought Marcus. "I could never be bothered by Vaen again." Marcus agreed to partake in a ritual. Immediately after, Silent Poet cut off the smallest finger on Marcus's right hand for the ritual. Marcus grinned, the pain not phasing him at the moment. He only had his thoughts set on the next day.
Marcus entered the masoleum in which the ritual was to take place. He seemed somewhat hesitant, but then walking right in. A group of four or five chickens followed Poet into the masoleum.
"Stand at the end of the coffin that is opposite to me, Marcus," Poet said.
Marcus nodded and did as he asked. He glanced around as Poet started to mutter strange incantations.
"ou-yay ill-way eave-lay his-tay ad-lay!"
Poet advanced to Marcus, handing Marcus potions to drink. Marcus drank them quickly, and then turned to Poet and nodded. Poet returns to muttering small incantations. He then orders Marcus to turn to his left four times, saying aloud his desire.
"I wish to be in complete control of this body." Marcus said, turning four times. As he does this, Poet plunges his sacraficial knife into all but one chicken. Marcus nods to Poet, but then suddenly feels a sharp pain in his body. Poet takes out the severed finger he removed from Marcus the day before, and stabs the knife into it. Marcus groans loudly in pain.
"Are you ready to be free, Marcus?" Poet asked. Marcus nodded quickly in response.
Poet lifts the knife and carves a star into his own hand. Marcus watched on, slightly worried now, as Poet lifts the knife over his head. "Be free!" Poet shouted as he plunged the knife into Marcus's heart. At this point, Angel and Grig'nag appear from the shadows. Poet glances down at Marcus, ordering him to leave Vaen's body. Marcus falls to his knees.
"Now, Marcus. I've left you one live chicken that you can possess if you so wish. You can do that, or wander for many years to come once again." Poet smirked.
Marcus is forced out of Vaen's body and stands there, glancing around for a few moments.
"This lad is bound to my protection, and he cannot be retaken by you. Be gone!"
Marcus disappeared. Vaen groaned slightly, opening his eyes half way. Angel ran and kneeled next to him, looking him over.
"Vaen...?" Angel said.
Grig looked down at Vaen and patted his head. "Ugh der..."
Vaen looked up at Grig and responded, "Ugh..." then looked at Angel and smiled slightly.
"He may be somewhat confused for a while as to what has happened." Poet explained. "Angel, give him this..."
He handed Angel a potion. She looked up at him confused.
"Have him drink it. It will help with his recovery."
Angel put the potion to Vaen's lips, and Vaen began to recover. Angel smiled down at Vaen and then kissed him softly. Vaen returned her kiss, and then glanced around. He got up to his knees.
"Poet, provide a gate to my house?" Angel asked.
Poet nodded, and opened a gate to Angel's house, and Angel and Vaen walked through.
Marcus is no longer an open threat to those who wander the community now. But, it is only a matter of time until he finds another body to possess, and seeks revenge on those who helped in his demise.