glimmeroniron: Kind eyes small smile Default (Default)
[personal profile] glimmeroniron
Player Info

Name: Hayley
Age: 29
Contact: www.plurk.com/Manateehugs
Characters already in Teleios: none
Reserve: teleios-mods.dreamwidth.org/1551.html

Character Basics

Character Name: Riodan
Age: 24
Universe: Original character, our earth in the fifth century ce. approximately 1,600 years ago.
Canon point: Halfway through his story

Debt Class A:
151
Debt Class B: 541
Debt Class C: 770

Total Debt:
1,462 years

Original Character Section

Setting

Riodan is from a historical fiction story, so his world is our world, but about 1,549 years ago. It is the fifth century, Late Antiquity according to historians. The story takes place in the Sub-Roman Britannia in the province Flavia Caesariensis. Riodan and most of the people he knows, may be a vaguely aware of these political divisions, but they know themselves first as Britons. Riodan is living in a post Roman Britain, but not by very much. The political leaders and legionaries withdrew in 410 ce. The story starts in 472 ce. During this time, not only is Britannia adjusting to life without Roman administration and military protection, but this time is also known as the Age of Immigration due to the movements of “barbarian” groups, such as the Huns, Goths, Visigoths, and (of direct importance to Britannia) the Saxons, Angles and Jutes. The Jutes, Angles and Saxons are later known under the umbrella name of the Anglo-Saxons, when they become the cultural/ethnic majority. The Age of Immigration led the Jutes, Angles and Saxons to invade Britannia due to encroachment of other tribal groups and possibly the encouragement of the sea causing loss of arable farmland.

These invasions may have began in 425 ce. so by the time the story takes place Saxon invasions have been occurring for a couple of generations. This has resulted in enclaves of Pagan Saxon villages and lands in Britannia, some get on alright with Christian Briton neighbors and some integrate with them. However the pressure to conflict is there and as more Saxon warbands come seeking settlement in Britannia warfare does result. Some noble Britons choose to leave, setting up a sort of colony in Armorica (later known as Brittany). Others stay and fight new waves of Saxon invasion, drawing on Roman military techniques (as resources allow) and cavalry for it’s maneuverability and speed.

This period of the “Dark Age” as also been called the Heroic Age, which I believe draws the formation of warbands around a charismatic war leader. Due to population and mobilizing ability, armies rarely grew over 100 men, making the trained and veteran team of warriors the most effective choice. A number of historians looking at this period have began to label it Sub-Roman Britain. Looking at the time period and how I’m interpreting it for this story and as a history student I agree with the label, as it is not a fully roman dominant culture anymore, but much of the trappings are still there, while there are also features like the the warband, which are more British and or early medieval like in spirit it’s a growth and blending of cultures. A meeting point between Pagan Saxons and Christian Romanized Britons in a time of population change and social upheaval, a cusp in time, Late Antiquity and into the early Medieval period.

History

Riodan was born December 30th 466 ce. to Teithi (father) and Cadwyn (mother). They lived in a small village, the neighbors shared the same crafting specialty and they lumped their resources together for barter and fairs and shared a grain storage each home had their own garden plots. The craft that the villagers shared in Riodan’s home village was wool working, sepharding, wool washing, carding, spinning and weaving and selling bolts of cloth.

When Riodan was six his village was raided by Saxons his father was wounded trying to fend off the raiders. The raid started a downward spiral. The village granary was damaged in the raid and the grain spoiled this led to a lack of bread and hunger. Cadwyn, struggling to nurse her seriously wounded husband and to feed the three of them, reluctantly decides to send Riodan away. She asks if a local farming family of seven can take him in, just until Teithi gets back on his feet and they have more to eat. While on one hand she seems to believe this, on the other hand she explains to Riodan, that she would never abandon him and if she doesn’t return she’d be dead.
A year passes and Cadwyn doesn’t come for Riodan. The farming family themselves fall on hard times their small head of cattle dwindles to one. At the same time they owe a cow to a drover who had lent the family a bull to stud the year before. The drover comes to collect the cow owed that spring, coming in the spring is harsh in that the family has just planted their garden and there winter storage has dwindled. The drover wants the family’s only remaining cow. The mother of the family knows that they desperately need the cow to live on until summer, so she makes the drover another deal. She offers him the opportunity to be a slave owner offering Riodan. The drover accepts and Riodan becomes his slave. They spend the next twelve years with him. However he’s not really with him. He is not treated as a fellow person he is treated as lesser than a person and second to the drover’s dog. The drover never calls him by name and also doesn’t give Riodan his name. The drover doesn’t sexually abuse him, but he is emotionally neglectful and can be physically abusive. As he is so young in the beginning Riodan doesn’t know how to protect himself from this beating on his self worth and personhood and so it comes crashing down before it can even assert itself.

When Riodan is about 18, hard times hit again, and the drover starts butchering cattle to live on. He is successful at this and things escalate and he begins rustling cattle. Riodan doesn’t want any part in the cattle thefts, but he has no choice as the drover threatens his life if he doesn’t assist him. At this point Riodan is so down trodden in spirit, that not only does he not consider running away, he does fear that the drover would kill him if he felt it necessary. About nine months into rustling the drover switched their range to avoid being caught up to. However this led them closer to the military front and the warriors HQ. The Warlord of the region sends out one of his lead soldiers (Garwin) to capture the thieves. Garwin catches the drover and Riodan in the act of stealing some cattle, the drover tries evade him, but is killed in the process. Garwin takes Riodan back to the region’s main town and frees him from his slave bonds. However Riodan’s fate is uncertain, consenting or not, he stole cattle which is a hanging offense. It is unclear as to whether Riodan is conscripted into the military to pay for his cattle thefts or as part of his slavery, or both, but he feels indebted to the warlord and Garwin and so he doesn’t ask about the details or refuse the offer, such as it is.

Riodan then goes into the life of a soldier of the warband he receives training first on foot and then at, Garwin’s insistence, in cavalry. Garwin saw his skill with equines and felt Riodan would be a very effective cavalry soldier. Having a purpose brightens Riodan and he’s confused as to why Garwin would free him and look out for him, especially since Riodan feels he has no way to ever repay it to him. To his amazement Riodan also makes another friend in the son of noble and soldier named Calix and Lilly the wife of the warband’s medic. The war of defense against a new coming Saxon War band rages for over ten years. Unfortunately the warfare Riodan has experienced has left him with occasional nightmares. These nightmares will often wake him out of his sleep and he may cry out. Other dangerous moments might make him flashback to previous combat, depending on how similar the current event is to his past experience.  

Throughout this time Riodan keeps his past enslavement a secret the only a three others in the warband are aware of his situation, if knowledge of it were open it could risk or at the very least change his position in life socially. Although war is horrifying, through his service in the warband Riodan slowly learns that he has worth as a person and that he can be his own person, that people need him and he can be loved. Through the trauma of fighting for his life and lives of others he resurfaces to finally become a full person again who doesn’t feel like nothing. However, that is the ending of his arc. At the point of which he’s pulled to Teleios he’s at the midpoint of the war and also part way through his recovery from his slavery; ie he’s going to be struggling with his right to his humanity and his self worth.


Personality

Riodan is gentle spirit, he’s loving, calm and steady. He’s very quiet partly by nature and partly by nurture, or lack there of due to his slavery. He observes first and speaks third. However when he does speak it’s important and he means it. He’s more likely to touch a hand to the hand or shoulder or sit close and give hugs. He feels he doesn’t express himself well, really he’s hard on himself with that, because he’s usually understood. His quietness isn’t a an aloof quietness, he wants to be welcoming because he knows the pain of exclusion. Despite all depersonalization and warfare he’s endured he still has a ready smile. He really enjoys stories and jokes.

One of his flaws is his lost identity and self worth, he doesn’t hate himself per-se but he feels less than others and doesn’t feel he deserves to be equal to others. He has a hard time making his own decisions, since for such a large portion of his life he risked an emotional or physical thrashing for trying to do such a thing. This flaw is not helped by the fact that he doesn’t have the introspection to help himself. He has come far enough to understand that there is a problem with how he views himself in relation to others, but he doesn’t see it clearly enough to help himself. This is partly because he doesn’t have a base of comparison to a more healthy view of himself.

Since Riodan was enslaved so young he didn’t have the defenses in place to either become angry and fight the dehumanization and general abuse, or to pull through it through force of will. He grew sad and fell into survival mode, not living just getting by and living day to day to, the point that he forgot how to live and not just survive. The understanding that there needs to be more than surviving, there needs to be living, took the first half of his story for him to fully understand. He has a soft sad and or tired slipcast www.dictionaryofobscuresorrows.com/post/12657305039/slipcast to his features when his laugh or smile isn’t there.

Despite his confusion, fear and pain about himself, Riodan likes people he really enjoys getting to know others. He is interested in hearing about others lives and what stories they have to tell. He believes that people in general are good and mean well. However, he has seen some of the worst that people can do so he’s not naive just optimistic. He has a lot of love to give. He works really well in groups, but not as leadership. At this point in this life he would be really anxious and uncomfortable if assigned leadership, mostly feeling he’s going to mess it up and let people down, or that there must be another far more capable of the leadership than him. He does shine as a support to a leader though, he makes a very good second in command. Riodan is also really good at being there for others especially when something bad has like shock or grief. He’ll sit with the person and not speak, but be open for physical closeness if the person needs it or wants it. He is also good at helping if someone is having anxiety or a break from reality.
Riodan’s life as a cavalry soldier brings him close to horses. He has a love of horses he identifies with nature. His horse Adimir is a companion for life. After each battle part of prayer of thanksgiving is for Adimir’s safety. Adimir was a remount, his soldier was killed in battle and he was given to Riodan when he came up a cavalry soldier. Adimir was reluctant to take on a new soldier so Riodan had work hard with him then they had a close bond.


Teleios Specific

On coming around in Teleios, Riodan will be bewildered like most people are with the situation. He’ll start getting past that pretty quick, as his soldier-hood and need to adapt from living in a hard pre-modern world, will get him back on his feet. When he learns that he is indebted he won’t be surprised by the concept or why it might be happening. During his slavery (when he was about 13) he thought there was a moment when he could run away with another person. Sadly she found his offer ridiculous and said he was the only the shadow of someone else’s debts. Also as a warrior coming from an active campaign he knows he has done a lot of violence and hurt others to a point he cannot apologize for. Living in the time and area he does he is Roman Catholic so he understands he has sinned and will willingly do penance. He won’t fight the concept that the he’s being asked to redeem himself and or make things right.

Riodan reaction to the agents of Teleios will vary. He may be aware of some of them specifically if they are of Greco-Roman origin. He would consider worship of them idolatrous, but not just speaking to them or interacting with them. He won’t believe them to be actual Gods as he feels that Gods are too big and unknowable to interact in the way they do, but he will see them as angels, or demons if they are openly cruel. He will be polite and respectful as he is strict with himself about obedience to authority, he’s not rebellious in the least. In the physical nature of Teleios, winter will be hard for Riodan. He’s pretty used cold weather, but the lack of sun will be tough to get used to. He will want to help others with their tasks and or getting their debt forgiven, if they want help.There will be a lot of references he might not understand, since he is from the distant past, but I plan to have him roll with it and only ask if he’s if it seems really important, sort of like Steve Rogers in the Captain America movies or Castiel in Supernatural. I mentioned above that he sometimes has nightmares that wake him up kicking and swinging and yelling. He will be embarrassed and very apologetic if he wakes anyone else worse frightens them.

  Appearance

Riodan is about 5' 10 he has a medium build, he's limbs are well muscled with lots of riding, sword fighting and manual work as a soldier. He doesn't have a six pack but his core is lean. His hair is medium brown with some chestnut highlights where the sun hits it a lot. He tends to keep his hair cut to two to three inches past his ears, it's pretty thick course hair. He has a oval shaped face, which is long with strong cheek bones. He also has a long rather slender nose and a little smile on his lips. His eyes are his most distinctive feature, they're bright green like gooseberries with some darker flecks. His eyebrows also enhance them as they're dark and thicker. At this point in his life he also has a scar on the right side of his head. It was caused by a spear passing upwards through his helmet missing his eye (barely) and passing along his forehead, through his hairline and over his scalp a ways. As a result he has a narrow bald spot where the scar passes through.  



Powers/Abilities

Riodan is mortal and has all the vulnerabilities of a average human, he doesn’t have any super powers or supernatural powers. In regards to abilities, he’s a trained soldier so he has a soldiers discipline and calm under stress. He is a skilled rider and in able to ride a horse in a variety of situations, rough terrain, at speed, jumping or while being attacked. Skilled with a sword and spear on the ground and in the saddle. He can mend objects, sew, weave (learned from his uncle), he’s an above average cook. He can sleep just about anywhere or on just about anything. He will also eat anything he knows won’t make him sick. He can hunt and forage well from years of doing so with the drover and living off the land with the warband. He cannot read or write, I’m open for lessons from Teleios fellows if they want, or this being an exploitable weakness from Teleios agents. He enjoys games of dice and cat’s cradle. He also has the ability to coax people into talking to him or relaxing with him, he doesn’t understand why, but it comes in handy sometimes.

Action Tag Sample

[Riodan returns her smile. He blinks back a little surprise, it hasn't occurred to him that she might like an individual horse in her life, but not necessarily others. He had been thinking of his own experience of one horsemen among a warband of cavalrymen. His like hadn't been innate, but a grown fondness over years of working with horses. He gives a soft chuckle and shakes his head at himself.]

Ur-- I really shouldn't make assumptions.

[He nods as she lists off the animals. He likes them all too. Then Alleyne says panther and he's lost.]

Panther? What's one of those?


Prose Sample

Stealing wasn't something he thought of even third on his mental list of options, so when he was commanded to steal the letters from the mailroom of the ship, his heart had skipped a beat.

That was nothing compared to the way it hammered in his chest when they found him, or how it seemed to climb into his throat as they walked him onto the plank. The roll of the waves with the openness and slight differing wobble of the plank with the ship made the sky and water feel like a void that he was just thrust into.

He was about to turn and look back at the ship, when his footing was gone and he was falling fast. All that followed was what felt like an eternity of treading the swell and downward sweeping troughs of the waves, with bursts of furious swimming toward the what appeared to be a beach, or at the least maybe it was a sand bar?

The overriding, almost burning scent of salt and taste of sea brine was the only thing in the world at first. Then he realized there was coughing, a deep wrenching cough. *It's you coughing fool!* He thought with an odd detachment. He opened his eyes and lifted his chin off the hard soaked sand. His hair was plastered to his head in tendrils and sea water seeped out of them and into his eyes he blinked against the stingy heavy water.

The day was overcast, despite this it seemed too bright in his exhausted thirsty state. He gripped the sand and propped himself up on his elbows and shifted onto his hands and knees. He gave as a dry hoarse laugh this continued into a chain of little laughs until it was a moderate fit of chuckles. It was the ragged, a little frightened, but happy sound of a person who was happy to still be living when death would have been justifiable.

His legs trembled as he stood, but he could do it, another little victory! The next task was to find some collected rain water or a stream. It paled to his need for water, but he also hoped that there might be others on the little island. Just one other person would cut the undercurrent of his anxiety in half. He began the hike...
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Riodan

January 2017

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