Vanyel "Van" Hartsblood

User: Kates
Campaign: Fraeral
Race: Elf
Gender: Male
Class/Level: Ranger/5
Vanyel "Van" Hartsblood

Elf Male
6'3" tall (medium)
168 years old (nearing middle-aged)
Neutral Good

Personality: Van is an elf of patience and forethought. His background have made him a careful player in any situation, though with the ability for swift action when absolutely necessary. Van is respectful and reserved when it comes to interacting with others, though close friends will be privy to a somewhat twisted sense of humor, a stubborn individuality, and a strong drive towards self-determination. Van worships the god Erastil, who is the patron of farming, hunting, trade, and family.

Physicality: Lanky and wiry, Van's tall frame is one shaped by years of living off the land. His skin is unusually tanned and rough for an elf, and scars mark every year he has lived away from the comforts of the usual elven life. As he nears middle age for one of his race, Van begins to show more and more fine wrinkles, and the grey of his hair is twined with white strands, though it's hardly apparent. Van shears his hair off with a dagger when it gets in his eyes too much, and shaves as often as he has need to; the overall effect is decidedly scruffy. He wears simple, humble clothes suited to a practical rangers, bears straightforward weaponry of the best quality that he can buy, and only adorns himself with a few quirky bracelets around one wrist.
Van was born and spent most of his young life (which is a good long time, for an elf) in an elven city surrounded by the comforts and academic learning that any full-blood elf would be provided. Van excelled in physical pursuits, finding his talents poorly suited to spell casting and book learning. He was eager to learn weapon skills and his quick proficiency with ranged weapons was outstanding among the elves he grew up with. Van was fascinated by druidic magic, and was often despondent over his own failures to succeed in magical study.

As he grew and began exploring the world with other elves as part of guard details, Van grew to know nearby towns populated by humans, half-elves, and other folk the life of which he had never seen. His elven brethren were at once fascinated with humankind and distasteful of half-elves, and Van, finding himself intrigued by this dichotomy, spent as much time as he could exploring human cities and settlements nearby. His elven family grew increasingly worried he would father a "mongrel" with a human woman; their worst fears were exceeded with Van met and fell in love with a half-elf woman named Arithenne. Van, finding himself beset with criticism and scorn from the elves he'd known his entire life, grew hard and stubborn, and left home to live with Van. Having little money and few skills, they build a cottage in a remote area, weeks travel away from either of their homes and days from the nearest town so as to get away from the hated they had faced. Arithenne and Van spent a rough few years learning how to live off the land, but eventually were able to thrive in their new home as Van applied his talent in archery toward putting food on their table. His abilities to gather food were put to the test as Arithenne became pregnant, and in a few short years, Van had a small family to provide for.

Their children grew, and Van spent his days caring for his family, teaching his children how to live off the land as he had learned by hard trial. The family made frequent trips into town to sell the fruits of their labors, and traded in meats, hides, and herbs. Eventually the children were of age to attend school, and Van and Arithenne took their meager savings and moved into town. His eldest daughter took to book learning and became a cleric of Erastil in a nearby city; his son found he excelled at combat skills and took guard work with a convoy headed to faraway lands; and Van's youngest daughter, to his delight, found she loved working with the herbs from the forest and became an apothecary and healer. Though his quarter-human children found their way easily in the human city as they passed for exotic elves, Arithenne and Van were never well accepted, and as their children moved out or went adventuring on their own, the couple yearned to return to their humble life in the woodland cottage. As Arithenne aged, her life-span being far shorter than Van's, they went back to the forest to live. Arithenne's last years were full of the pleasures of living as she and Van pleased, eating the fruits of the land and looking forward to occasional visits from their daughters. When she eventually died, Van found himself lost and very much alone. He decided to go adventuring and to see what fortune could be sought after spending a lifetime to most folk as a father and husband. After seeing his daughters and telling them his plans, he traveled to the city of Edmonton seeking a new start.