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Author Topic: Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno / Eanian Warlord  (Read 3517 times)
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Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #15 on: 29 January 2013, 17:41:09 »

Oh thank you ;)  

Personality:

An aggressive, hard man, Brynjar is a trying person to be around. Time in the south has done nothing to quiet the untamed, instinctive nature of the man, and he still uses aggression as a fallback when confronted with things he does not understand or wish to accept. A naturally distrustful person, he has a distain for anything unusual, or different. This has led him to leading a rather solitary life in the south, searching for a type of kinship that he knew in the north.

Really, you are talking of the South as if you would wander the Ráház - Dáth! Where you are now, this is for me still far, far north and very cold! brrrrr
I think most of the Santharian readers will agree with me..


A careful observer may notice the grief that wears on him. It manifests in times of prolonged silence and distant looks when confronted with accusation and slurs that would usually be greeted with fists and bare blades. In the luxury of the south, he finds much time for reflection in the hours that would have been filled with hunting and battle and celebration.

I haven't read your new last part yet, but here and elsewhere you are speaking of observers - but so far there are none apart from that gnome. Well, that may change ;)  But it is well written! I think we know much more fom that solitary man than from any other well known Santharian person!

Biography:

Birth and Youth in the North:
Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno was born in a small cave as Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu. The exact location can be estimated to a day’s travel north by sled from the settlement of Eanin on the eastern island of the Eanian territory. Four years later, his brother Bjorrar was born in the Eanin settlement.

Conflict was a common sight in Brynjar’s youth. The lanne was no stranger to assaults, living in the permanent settlement Eanin, and that was the way of the north, to take with strength. As all male children of the tribe, Brynjar was trained in combat and the hunt. He learned how to track prey, craft weapons from antler and tusk and bone, and mark the change of the seasons.

Battle on the Ice:
At fourteen winters Brynjar killed his first man—an Inlerin warrior— and earned his civil rights in a tribe war that had come late in the season, with the first ice. Between the islands, the ice was soft from the summer melt, too soft to wage battle upon. Many men from both tribes were lost to the depths, this included Brynjar’s father and the Lanrul of the tribe.

Weeks later, Brynjar reached his fifteen winter and he, along with four others, was heralded into the warriors of the tribe with the Warrior’s Chant. The shaving of their hair marked a boy’s transition into adulthood, the new growth would make them men, and battle merit would determine how they wore it. They were branded in red, a strong-lined visage of a pinnip on the waves was tattoo’d on their throats.

Breaking of the Tribe:
A warrior from Gourdynn was chosen to be the next Eanian Lanrul, and under his guidance those on the smaller western island began to prosper. Those to the east were not so fortunate, even under the leadership of a strong warlord in Eanin. They were under siege, in every direction other tribes encroached and raided small nomadic lannes and slew their kin. In the seasons to come, few children were born and fewer warriors were initiated to fill their desperately depleted ranks.

Contempt grew for the prosperous in the west, while Brynjar and the lanne lost their seat in Eanin to the invading Tarkyns and were forced to take to the ice shelf. The old went hungry first, and were given swift deaths by their sons. Then the women, mates and mothers, became scarce as the warriors tried to safeguard their future—boys forced to wear the mantles of dead men. There were only two boys left in the lanne, soon to be initiated as warriors, though they had done their duty as such long before those days.

They starved, and the west grew powerful.

The White Bear:
For days at a time Brynjar would wander the shelf in solitude. Twenty winters, unmated with no heir to carry on his legacy and that of his forebears, and too thin to survive the encroaching winter. The events on the ice would shape his future, and that of his tribe. It was far on the ice he spotted it, a cloaked pinnip and a late-born pup basking too far from their breathing hole. He was sure he could catch the cow, but so was she—the white bear.

The events of this day are passed on, orally by the women that keep the history:

Quote
“Dark, dark, Nechya cast her shadow over our people these days. Aleshnir refused to give Grau-eck-Shanno the bounty of his children, for he had lost the seat of his father and it started new war between Aleshnir and Zundefor. And as the child of Phobit and Nechya stood witness to Zundefor’s glory, Aleshnir slipped away into Asendin’s cold embrace. In her fury, Zundefor struck down Grau-eck-Shanno with a might swing of her paw.

Across the ice, he flew like pinnip through water. And the white bear huffed and snorted and hollered in a blind rage, for she had been so close to catching Aleshnir in their eternal struggle. She charged Grau-eck-Shanno, curled up on the ice like a babe in his mother’s belly, and she smacked him again. Her teeth scraped his head, her mighty claws dug through his gloves to his hands.

In pity for Grau-eck-Shanno, Asterlin bestowed upon him the great speed of the striking light. In her splendour, Zundefor rose tall to deliver the final blow. But Grau-eck-Shanno wielded his white claws and slew down Zundefor, and by her grace, in honor of his conquest, she bestowed upon him the fruit of her child and returned to the chaos.”

An Icemut sled from his lanne bore witness to this struggle, and bore Brynjar back to their small encampment on the ice. It was that day that Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu was given the name Grau-eck-Shanno, and known forth as Whiteclaw, for the bone knife he used to strike down the white bear.

As Shaba alredy mentioned, that is just overwhelming..   worship

Warlord of the East:
The night following the killing of the white bear, the carcass was skinned and set to roast on a spit and the pelt was given to Brynjar as was his right by conquest. The warlord of the small lanne, friend to Brynjar’s father, stripped the scruff from his face and named him warlord for his heroism.

The melting of the ice brought new life; the lannes of the eastern island began to come to the ice shelf to bear witness to the fur of the white bear. Brynjar’s impoverished tribe began to swell with new faces, young boys listening to old women tell of the struggle against the bear and youthful warriors preparing for the battle season. It seemed that the east would continue to prosper, for game was plenty and the Eanians were beginning to recover from their drastic losses in seasons past.

War with the Tarkyns:
The summers to come were red.

Brynjar rallied his warriors and razed villages to the north, where Inlerins camped on the ice, and to the south, where Tarkyns had gathered around the conquered settlement of Eanin. He took young women and domesticated herds, the pelts from fallen men’s backs and leather from their feet; he took what had been taken from his lanne, by right of conquest.

The warriors began painting their faces differently from their kin to the west. They were white-faced demons, with red handprints smeared on their faces, their arms red up to the elbows. Over the coast, they passed like a storm, snarling faces and gnashing teeth. Their strongest foes were eaten on the battlefield, the heart given to the warrior who showed the most prowess.  

The Eanians proved themselves a force to be reckoned, but their clashes with the Tarkyns proved a double-edged blade. For every scout party they took, the Tarkyns took their slaves, their livestock. As winter came, their skirmishes became more desperate, and no mercy was given. Neither side took slaves or spoils, just flesh and blood.

Meeting of the Lanruls:
Brynjar was twenty two winters, and that summer he would witness his first Langral Meet at the side of a Lanrul who, before that summer, he couldn’t even put a face to.

From Gourdynn on the west coast, the Lanrul travelled across the entire breadth of the Eanian territory. He hand-picked warlords of great renown to serve as his escort to the Langral meeting, held every twelve winters at the melting of the ice. As he went across the territory, he heard over and over again of the tribe on the shelf and the man who killed a white bear with a bone knife.

The Lanrul’s coming to the ice shelf was not met with celebration and feasting, but with dark eyes and sallow faces, slowly regaining their fullness. Food was still hard to come by, with the Tarkyns to the south harrying the coast and driving the herds south to their own settlements. It was in war paint the warriors of the lanne greeted their Lanrul.

Such open hostility would have been punishable by death, but the Eanians could not afford the loss of another warrior, especially by their own hand. The story of the white bear had spread from mouth to ear of slaves, taken by Inlerin, captured by Eanians, stolen by Tarkyns, all the way down the coast. So Brynjar went south, and the Eanians travelled in two groups, westerners painted with red and white horizontal bands, and the white-faced easterners with their red-streaked faces.

The Eanians came to Aeidin and laid their weapons outside her walls. Warriors in green and black and blue and orange all stared in their deafening silence, and the weakness of the tribe was displayed for all to see. They saw different patterns in a sea of faces, the bright white fur of the Lanrul, a snow fox mantle, and the bright white fur of the white bear.
 
There they stood, Eanians. Divided. Weak. Prey.

The afternoon of their arrival was marked by the establishment of the ceasefire, and the Lanruls and their warriors made to the hotspring to the south and washed the paints and dyes from their skin. For this summer they were not Eanian and Tarykn or Remusian and Tokarian, Vertan and Filmainrim, Santarim and Inlerin and Sarmanian.

For one summer, they were Icetribesmen.

Licking Wounds:
The summer held a rare time of peace, but it would die with the snows. The Eanians were held together with strings, the need for a false front to ward off the attacks of other tribes. But the Langral meet had sent a message to the other tribes, and the battle season would be long and enduring. No help would come if the east were to fall.
 
When the season opened in the summer, the Eanians of the east would be ready. They fastened claws to gloves and boots, wore animal skins upon their heads with long teeth and rocks painted red for eyes. If they could not win through strength of arms, then they would send their foes running in fear. The tribes came in force, Inlerin and Tarkyn and Faeron. The east was on the brink of destruction.

But a blessing came in the second month of the season, a bitter cold and snarling snows. Winter had come, with ice and wind and a whiteout. Barely able to see a wison length in front of themselves, Brynjar and his warriors dug furrows into the ice shelf around their camp, deep enough to trap a man. Many fell victim to their traps, and more to javelin and ax in the white of an early winter. Those who didn’t fled across the ice, or starved on it.

That early winter would by them a summer without assaults, a summer to wage war on the tribes that dared not cross the ice paths to the island.

The Passing of a Mother:
Twenty and five winters, Brynjar was a pride to behold. But as winter came and the herds moved south, the snow took his mother. There were no tears shed for her in the passing, for she had become old and was long past her childbearing years and she was just another mouth to feed. Winter took an old woman, and brought a man from the far reaches of the eastern island. He came in gleaming plate with a train of slaves, astride the back of a great bull wison, and offered gifts of good faith.

Summer of the Whale:
The summer came with a vengeance, where the ice receded further than it had done in over a century, by count of the wise women who held their legacy. With it came a white whale carcass, flesh rotting and falling from the bone. Some revered it, a gift of bone to craft into spear and axe and knife and go to war with Aleshnir’s blessing. Others said it was an evil thing, and the gods were in a fury, punishing the Eanin with a hot summer and rotten meat.

Brynjar set his men about the carcass to collect the bones. They crafted many weapons and talismans from bone, sewing strips to jerkin and tunic and boot and glove. But Brynjar felt the heat upon his mind, and he did not lead his men to war with their kin. Nor did he seek to reclaim Eanin.

At twenty-seven winters, Brynjar took his first mate.

Re-Taking of Eanin, and Exile:
The woman who birthed Brynjar’s firstborn was a southern slave with a solemn look and their union was affectionless. Brynjar held no grief at her passing in the childbed. Thirty winters old, and Brynjar held his firstborn, a strong whelp named Bjornol. He thought of days to come, teaching his son to hunt the pinnip that was their lifeblood, to throw an ax and strike down a man. It was the birth of his first son that pushed Brynjar to war.

But the summer was fruitless and blood made the ocean run red. It took six winters for Brynjar to take Eanin. But the victory was hollow. The Tarkyns had slain his son, and his brother’s son, and many of his kin’s sons like thieves in the night. That summer the Lanrul of the tribe, hidden away in Gourdynn while the east fought the Tarkyns, was struck down by a white bear on the ice in the Bay of Calnith. And that too was hollow.

Grief for his son and shame at what he had done to his tribe led Brynjar south, and he kept going south, and would keep going south, until there was nowhere left to go.

Well,  thumbup

 I'm not sure you have the same picture of the land as I have. That's the problem, its in our head only..
As soon as I have finished my Santhran, we need to discuss some Northern stuff with Altario.
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« Reply #16 on: 30 January 2013, 11:16:18 »

Comments will be in Mauve, while fabulous Fucia will be edits.

Overview:
Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno is a widely known warrior among his tribe, the Eanian ice tribe of Northern Sarvonia, who rose quickly to the esteemed rank of warlord during tremulous I wonder if you are using the correct term here.  I think tumultuous is more what you wanted, as tremulous does not seem strong enough.  IMO times. The most notable of his achievements was the reclaiming of the Eanin settlement, located in the northeast of the Eanian territory on the Icelands’ Coast, from the Tarkyn ice tribe. He is currently in a self-imposed exile from the Icelands, after the retaking of Eanin, and could prove a plethora of information on the life of the Eanian tribe.

Appearance:
Brynjar is roughly-hewn creature. Roughly one ped, two fores, and two palmspan in height, he easily blends into the southern crowd. Life in the south has melted the excess fat so essential to northern life, pulling strong relief to his already harsh, angular features. His face is squared, soft curves pulled into hard lines. Most often he is a sour figure; his thin lips are tipped downwards and bright grey eyes burn from under heavy brows, accented by high cheekbones. Numerous wrinkles ring his eyes, heavy around the bottom lids. His nose is wide, almost consistent in girth from bridge to the thick tip. Dark brown hair falls in sleek sheets, braided and twisted in a haphazard array, and provides a heavy frame liberally streaked with grey and white. Even in exile, Brynjar keeps his face clean-shaven to mark his rank as warlord. His skin is darkly bronzed in the face and hands, much more so than other areas of the body. Many crossing scars cover his hands, heavy around the knuckle area. There is also some scarring on the back of the head, causing some erratic hair growth around it. It is impossible to miss the red, thick-lined pinnip symbol on his throat.

Brynjar has tried to keep to his traditional dressing habits. The one article which he refuses to be parted with is the white bear pelt, which he wears much like a Santharian would wear a cloak, with one heavy, clawed paw thrown over the shoulder. He has, out of necessity, adapted to the southern style of dress. He is partial to the elk hides of the south, finding a moderate familiarity in their textures, and has trousers fashioned from the skins. He has light tunics made from strange cloths that he is unfamiliar with. A close look may warrant a reminder of his northern, primitive origin by the weapons on his belt, crafted from antler and bone and stone rather than wood and steel. But it is the stone talisman and its red pinnip symbol that marks him truly as foreign.

The drastic heat of the south has done nothing to prevent Brynjar from donning his red and white war paints during the months of his homelands summer, but it is a rare occasion that he uses the charcoal-based mixture to coat around his eyes, since the glare of the sun in the south is greatly lessened when snow is rare. The face is painted white, and a red handprint placed diagonally across it and excess red paint is used to coat the arms up to the elbow.

Personality:

An aggressive, hard man, Brynjar is a trying person to be around. Time in the south has done nothing to quiet the untamed, instinctive nature of the man, and he still uses aggression as a fallback when confronted with things he does not understand or wish to accept. A naturally distrustful person, he has a distain disdain for anything unusual, or different. This has led him to leading a rather solitary life in the south, searching for a type of kinship that he knew in the north.

A careful observer may notice the grief that wears on him. It manifests in times of prolonged silence and distant looks when confronted with accusation and slurs that would usually be greeted with fists and bare blades. In the luxury of the south, he finds much time for reflection in the hours that would have been filled with hunting and battle and celebration.

Biography:

Birth and Youth in the North:
Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno was born in a small cave as Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu. The exact location can be estimated to a day’s travel north by sled from the settlement of Eanin on the eastern island of the Eanian territory. Four years later, his brother Bjorrar was born in the Eanin settlement.

Conflict was a common sight in Brynjar’s youth. The lanne was no stranger to assaults, living in the permanent settlement Eanin, and that was the way of the north, to take with strength. As all male children of the tribe, Brynjar was trained in combat and the hunt. He learned how to track prey, craft weapons from antler and tusk and bone, and mark the change of the seasons.

Battle on the Ice:
At fourteen winters Brynjar killed his first man—an Inlerin warrior— and earned his civil rights in a tribe war that had come late in the season, with the first ice. Between the islands, the ice was soft from the summer melt, too soft to wage battle upon. Many men from both tribes were lost to the depths, this included Brynjar’s father and the Lanrul of the tribe.

Weeks later, Brynjar reached his fifteen winter and he, along with four others, was heralded into the warriors of the tribe with the Warrior’s Chant. The shaving of their hair marked a boy’s transition into adulthood, the new growth would make them men, and battle merit would determine how they wore it. They were branded in red, a strong-lined visage of a pinnip on the waves was tattoo’d on their throats.

Breaking of the Tribe:
A warrior from Gourdynn was chosen to be the next Eanian Lanrul, and under his guidance those on the smaller western island began to prosper. Those to the east were not so fortunate, even under the leadership of a strong warlord in Eanin. They were under siege, in every direction other tribes encroached and raided small nomadic lannes and slew their kin. In the seasons to come, few children were born and fewer warriors were initiated to fill their desperately depleted ranks.

Contempt grew for the prosperous in the west, while Brynjar and the lanne lost their seat in Eanin to the invading Tarkyns and were forced to take to the ice shelf. The old went hungry first, and were given swift deaths by their sons. Then the women, mates and mothers, became scarce as the warriors tried to safeguard their future—boys forced to wear the mantles of dead men. There were only two boys left in the lanne, soon to be initiated as warriors, though they had done their duty as such long before those days.

They starved, and the west grew powerful.

The White Bear:
For days at a time Brynjar would wander the shelf in solitude. Twenty winters, unmated with no heir to carry on his legacy and that of his forebears, and too thin to survive the encroaching winter. The events on the ice would shape his future, and that of his tribe. It was far on the ice he spotted it, a cloaked pinnip and a late-born pup basking too far from their breathing hole. He was sure he could catch the cow, but so was she—the white bear.

The events of this day are passed on, orally by the women that keep the history:

“Dark, dark, Nechya cast her shadow over our people these days.The way you state this, it seems to say that Nechya is feared or reviled, but in fact she is revered almost above all others.  She is the creator of the ice tribes Aleshnir refused to give Grau-eck-Shanno the bounty of his children, for he had lost the seat of his father and it started new war between Aleshnir and Zundefor. And as the child of Phobit and Nechya stood witness to Zundefor’s glory, Aleshnir slipped away into Asendin’s cold embrace. In her fury, Zundefor struck down Grau-eck-Shanno with a might swing of her paw. Zundefor is a male god.  If you wish, he could form as a female bear, but the god should be referred to as male, Aleshnir is female while Asterlin and Asendin are male

Across the ice, he flew like pinnip through water. And the white bear huffed and snorted and hollered in a blind rage, for she had been so close to catching Aleshnir in their eternal struggle. She charged Grau-eck-Shanno, curled up on the ice like a babe in his mother’s belly, and she smacked him again. Her teeth scraped his head, her mighty claws dug through his gloves to his hands.

In pity for Grau-eck-Shanno, Asterlin bestowed upon him the great speed of the striking light. In her splendour, Zundefor rose tall to deliver the final blow. But Grau-eck-Shanno wielded his white claws and slew down Zundefor, and by her grace, in honor of his conquest, she bestowed upon him the fruit of her child and returned to the chaos.”

An Icemut sled from his lanne bore witness to this struggle, and bore Brynjar back to their small encampment on the ice. It was that day that Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu was given the name Grau-eck-Shanno, and known forth as Whiteclaw, for the bone knife he used to strike down the white bear.

Warlord of the East:
The night following the killing of the white bear, the carcass was skinned and set to roast on a spit and the pelt was given to Brynjar as was his right by conquest. The warlord of the small lanne, friend to Brynjar’s father, stripped the scruff from his face and named him warlord for his heroism.

The melting of the ice brought new life; the lannes of the eastern island began to come to the ice shelf to bear witness to the fur of the white bear. Brynjar’s impoverished tribe began to swell with new faces, young boys listening to old women tell of the struggle against the bear and youthful warriors preparing for the battle season. It seemed that the east would continue to prosper, for game was plenty and the Eanians were beginning to recover from their drastic losses in seasons past.

War with the Tarkyns:
The summers to come were red.

Brynjar rallied his warriors and razed villages to the north, where Inlerins camped on the ice, and to the south, where Tarkyns had gathered around the conquered settlement of Eanin. He took young women and domesticated herds, the pelts from fallen men’s backs and leather from their feet; he took what had been taken from his lanne, by right of conquest.

The warriors began painting their faces differently from their kin to the west. They were white-faced demons, with red handprints smeared on their faces, their arms red up to the elbows. Over the coast, they passed like a storm, snarling faces and gnashing teeth. Their strongest foes were eaten on the battlefield, the heart given to the warrior who showed the most prowess. 

The Eanians proved themselves a force to be reckoned, but their clashes with the Tarkyns proved a double-edged blade. For every scout party they took, the Tarkyns took their slaves, their livestock. As winter came, their skirmishes became more desperate, and no mercy was given. Neither side took slaves or spoils, just flesh and blood.

Meeting of the Lanruls:
Brynjar was twenty two winters, and that summer he would witness his first Langral Meet at the side of a Lanrul who, before that summer, he couldn’t even put a face to.

From Gourdynn on the west coast, the Lanrul travelled across the entire breadth of the Eanian territory. He hand-picked warlords of great renown to serve as his escort to the Langral meeting, held every twelve winters at the melting of the ice. As he went across the territory, he heard over and over again of the tribe on the shelf and the man who killed a white bear with a bone knife.

The Lanrul’s coming to the ice shelf was not met with celebration and feasting, but with dark eyes and sallow faces, slowly regaining their fullness. Food was still hard to come by, with the Tarkyns to the south harrying the coast and driving the herds south to their own settlements. It was in war paint the warriors of the lanne greeted their Lanrul.

Such open hostility would have been punishable by death, but the Eanians could not afford the loss of another warrior, especially by their own hand. The story of the white bear had spread from mouth to ear of slaves, taken by Inlerin, captured by Eanians, stolen by Tarkyns, all the way down the coast. So Brynjar went south, and the Eanians travelled in two groups, westerners painted with red and white horizontal bands, and the white-faced easterners with their red-streaked faces.

The Eanians came to Aeidin and laid their weapons outside her walls. Warriors in green and black and blue and orange all stared in their deafening silence, and the weakness of the tribe was displayed for all to see. They saw different patterns in a sea of faces, the bright white fur of the Lanrul, a snow fox mantle, and the bright white fur of the white bear.
 
There they stood, Eanians. Divided. Weak. Prey.

The afternoon of their arrival was marked by the establishment of the ceasefire, and the Lanruls and their warriors made to the hotspring to the south and washed the paints and dyes from their skin. For this summer they were not Eanian and Tarykn or Remusian and Tokarian, Vertan and Filmainrim, Santarim and Inlerin and Sarmanian.

For one summer, they were Icetribesmen.

Licking Wounds:
The summer held a rare time of peace, but it would die with the snows. The Eanians were held together with strings, the need for a false front to ward off the attacks of other tribes. But the Langral meet had sent a message to the other tribes, and the battle season would be long and enduring. No help would come if the east were to fall.
 
When the season opened in the summer, the Eanians of the east would be ready. They fastened claws to gloves and boots, wore animal skins upon their heads with long teeth and rocks painted red for eyes. If they could not win through strength of arms, then they would send their foes running in fear. The tribes came in force, Inlerin and Tarkyn and Faeron. The east was on the brink of destruction.

But a blessing came in the second month of the season, a bitter cold and snarling snows. Winter had come, with ice and wind and a whiteout. Barely able to see a wison length in front of themselves, Brynjar and his warriors dug furrows into the ice shelf around their camp, deep enough to trap a man. Many fell victim to their traps, and more to javelin and ax in the white of an early winter. Those who didn’t fled across the ice, or starved on it.

That early winter would by them a summer without assaults, a summer to wage war on the tribes that dared not cross the ice paths to the island.

The Passing of a Mother:
Twenty and five winters, Brynjar was a pride to behold. But as winter came and the herds moved south, the snow took his mother. There were no tears shed for her in the passing, for she had become old and was long past her childbearing years and she was just another mouth to feed. Winter took an old woman, and brought a man from the far reaches of the eastern island. He came in gleaming plate with a train of slaves, astride the back of a great bull wison, and offered gifts of good faith.

Summer of the Whale:
The summer came with a vengeance, where the ice receded further than it had done in over a century, by count of the wise women who held their legacy. With it came a white whale carcass, flesh rotting and falling from the bone. Some revered it, a gift of bone to craft into spear and axe and knife and go to war with Aleshnir’s blessing. Others said it was an evil thing, and the gods were in a fury, punishing the Eanin with a hot summer and rotten meat.

Brynjar set his men about the carcass to collect the bones. They crafted many weapons and talismans from bone, sewing strips to jerkin and tunic and boot and glove. But Brynjar felt the heat upon his mind, and he did not lead his men to war with their kin. Nor did he seek to reclaim Eanin.

At twenty-seven winters, Brynjar took his first mate.

Re-Taking of Eanin, and Exile:
The woman who birthed Brynjar’s firstborn was a southern slave with a solemn look and their union was affectionless. Brynjar held no grief at her passing in the childbed. Thirty winters old, and Brynjar held his firstborn, a strong whelp named Bjornol. He thought of days to come, teaching his son to hunt the pinnip that was their lifeblood, to throw an ax and strike down a man. It was the birth of his first son that pushed Brynjar to war.

But the summer was fruitless and blood made the ocean run red. It took six winters for Brynjar to take Eanin. But the victory was hollow. The Tarkyns had slain his son, and his brother’s son, and many of his kin’s sons like thieves in the night. That summer the Lanrul of the tribe, hidden away in Gourdynn while the east fought the Tarkyns, was struck down by a white bear on the ice in the Bay of Calnith. And that too was hollow.

Grief for his son and shame at what he had done to his tribe led Brynjar south, and he kept going south, and would keep going south, until there was nowhere left to go.

Man of Snow and Ice:
In his exile, Brynjar wandered south. The north was frozen, and high mountain peaks that seemed so far away became closer and closer. He took painstaking care to venture far from any signs of settlements, passing across the vacant fields of Aeidin and into the small mountains that marked the border of the Tokarian territory. Along the far edge of the territory he skirted the river and headed towards to the Gathorn Mountains.

Reluctance set his pace, dragging slow and threatening to end him with hunger. It was like a sickness, pulling strength from his legs and resolve from his mind and he longed for familiar faces. A journey that should have taken a fortnight of swift travel had taken almost two moons. But the southern peaks of the mountains offered strange new sights: trees, as tall as him and a few that stood higher, bent and twisted by winds coming off the peaks. 

Tracks wandered up the southward slopes, and he followed them. It was there, among the high peaks where no tree dare take root, that he encountered his first ‘southerner’. At first it appeared to be a small, pale child, hardly half his height, a round lump in heavy, fur-lined wool. Back to him, the child would be an easy target, up to the elbows in snow and prodding a network of uncovered roots. A head popped up briefly, observed some scratches on a skin and scratched some more on it. The child had an aged face, wrinkles around the eyes and a thinning dark head of hair. A girl with a woman’s face. Unknown to Brynjar, she was not a child but the Gnomish botanist Eleanna Kalrinwenens.

He reached for his knife, but could he kill a child? An unarmed child like the boys in his lanne had been, when the Takaryns had slit their throats in the night. What would one more be? One more would be one too many. Brynjar retreated back into the valley, knife still on his belt. The woman-child was long from his mind.

Brynjar hunted in the valley, rich with game that dug through inches of melting snow to the awakening greenery underneath. He caught snow hares with sinew snares, and a fatty, thickly furred animal that tasted much better than the lean rabbit meat. Tracking another of these furred creatures with webbed feet, far from the cool snowcap-fed river it seemed to live in, he found the child again.

Or rather stumbled upon. In a terrified spurt, the creature had darted through a thick bramble, and crouched over, Brynjar followed. And there she was, stirring something in a small pot over a modest fire. He jerked his spear from the fleeing creature and jabbed its point towards her. The smell of stewing meat fogged his head, the lean rabbits he had dined on before he found the swimmer had left him hungry for fatter catches.

Eleanna set down her spoon and showed him her hands, a gesture even he could understand. Slowly, he lowered his spear. Then the sounds came, a rapid mix of grunts and rumbles that meant nothing. A second string, and then a third.  She gestured to the skins in front of the fire, and ladled a scoop of her stew into a wooden cup and held it out. He stared.

Brynjar perched himself on his haunches, fingers still curled around his spear, a wison length from the fire. Eleanna lifted the spoon to her mouth, blew, and ate. He watched still, and nothing happened. Again she offered. He didn’t move. In the brush, a stick cracked under pressure, and Brynjar was gone, hunched low and moving swift through the valley.

This continued for weeks, mistaken encounters from over a stone’s throw away and glimpses at even further. Figures among trees, shapes among rocks. The second time he encountered her camp, she was slicing a fat swimmer into chunks for her stew. Their proximity had ensured Brynjar that she was alone, and no threat to him. But strange things were best kept at a distance.

He was about to disappear into the brush when she saw him. The little thing hopped up and scampered close, holding her hands out and repeating a single sound, over and over and over. And for a fleeting moment a strangeness overcame him, a question, did she know what the swimmer was called?

It was a small change that would lead to so many more. That afternoon, Brynjar sat in front of her small fire and ate her stew in his cold silence. The initial communications were, strained at best. The weeks that it had taken for him to become at ease with Eleanna’s presence were all but erased by this new proximity. He saw a child, harmless, but he was on edge.

Days passed before he would stay longer than the time it took to slurp down a rich stew, and many more before they could hold a conversation. If it could be called such, the heavy-handed gestures and frustrated expletives. But Eleanna was not so different from the tribeswomen, preparing meat and gathering herbs or berries. She pointed out shrubs and bent trees, naming them, and telling him of places where snow came for only a few moon turns and then was gone and places where it never came at all.

Brynjar wondered what they may look like, these strange places or trees thrice as tall as him. He couldn’t go home, no matter how bad his gut ached for the ice and the simple life he left behind. The only way to go was south, so Brynjar travelled with Eleanna and their conversations became almost coherent in broken words and confused phrases as they walked across the Heaths of Wilderon.

As spring began to fade, Brynjar found the heat of the south almost unbearable. He was forced to discard his traditional pinnip clothes, and adopt lighter dress. It brought about his first interaction with a clearly non-human race—the Rhom-Oc. Eleanna acted mediator between the nomads, though Brynjar held fast to his ax and the orc settled close to the side of the massive warg. The elk hides were much thinner than those he was accustomed to, but the texture was familiar and the lightness astounded him. It was after this encounter that Brynjar learned of Eleanna’s Gnomish origin. This sent him away for many days; a man of the ice did not let the world into his home, especially if that world was female and non-human. What use did he have for tiny people or green men on black beasts? The sickness in his gut made him turn northward.

But he returned, after the agonizing months away from his tribe even this half-creature was more agreeable company to the strange greenness of the south. Slowly, painfully so, Brynjar began to let tiny pieces of the south into his world of ice and snow and the words came easier. Brynjar was able to relay patches of his life, settled in the foothills of the Imlith Mountains. Heavily edited, and vague, a complex world trying to fit into the language of the south.

Importance:

Brynjar was a strong figure head of the Eanians of the eastern island in times of great prosperity and in great hardship. His conquering of the white bear, interpreted as a message from the gods in Eanian lore, coupled with the lack of guidance from their Lanrul in Gourdynn painted Brynjar as Lanrul of the eastern island in all but name. This brought great prosperity to his lanne, as warlords joined their small tribes and his grew with an influx of warriors and children. It was also the splitting the Eanian people into east and west. But instead of taking arms against his kin, as many would have expected and eagerly followed him, Brynjar took to the reclaim of Eanin for the future generations of his line. Though he conquered the Tarkyns and drove them back from Eanin, many were lost and in his grief, he left the Icelands.

Brynjar is a wealth of information about the Icelands, and way of life in the far reaches of the north. There is no telling what this information may reveal or how it could alter the lives of Santharians, or his kin and other ice tribes in the Icelands.

Footnote:

Langral is a shortened form of Langral Meeting, a congregation of the leaders of the ice tribes (excluding the Himiko) gather in Aeidin. Here the leaders of the tribes, and their selection of warriors, commit to a ceasefire (which the Himiko tribe also acknowledges) for one summer every twelve summers.
 
Lanne is the ice tribe’s term for a minor clan with a tribe; every tribe is made up of many of these minor clans.

Lanrul is the ice tribe’s term for the leader of the entire tribe, while leaders of the minor clans are called Warlords.

Aleshnir is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the sea animal spirit in the form of a white whale but not limited to that form.

Asendin is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the force of the sea.

Asterlin is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the force of lightning.

Nechya is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the female night goddess.

Phobit is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the male day god.

Zundefor is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the land animal spirit in the form of a white bear but also, not limited to that form.



A very well researched and well written entry.  I look forward to collaborating with you for future development.  My creative juices have been starting to flow once more in the last month or so, and you may be the catalyst to getting me to start posting things.
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Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno
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« Reply #17 on: 31 January 2013, 01:23:39 »

@Ta'lia
I tried to tone down the 'heat of the south' a little bit more. Not sure if I have it quite right yet, though.

@Altario
That was definitely the word I was going for, thanks. I changed the gender of Zundefor in the mini-story and changed the first sentence so it no longer makes Nechya look feared by the tribe speaker.

I also edited the section that mentions the Langral Meeting (seems like I misread the section in the Ice Tribe entry, quite drastically). I clarified that Langral is a place and not just a name for the meeting of the Lanruls  (I set it to the east of the Aeidin settlement seeing as an exact location doesn't exist right now and it wasn't on the map).

Seems I should have researched a bit more carefully, made some pretty glaring mistakes :P Hopefully I've fixed most of them. Huzzah for inspiration.
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« Reply #18 on: 31 January 2013, 14:52:08 »

Your avatar is truly scaring!
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Shabakuk Zeborius Anfang
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« Reply #19 on: 05 February 2013, 00:08:19 »

Hi Brynjar,

I was hoping to have another read through your revised entry this weekend gone, but was thwarted by life. I hope to give what will hopefully be a final round of comments before the next weekend, though.

Thanks for being so patient and courteous with us all.

Shabakuk
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« Reply #20 on: 09 February 2013, 02:55:04 »

Here is the promised check. Your entry reads extremely well now, Brynjar. Excellent storytelling. I particularly enjoyed the description of Eleanna's and Brynjar's meetings.

Since Talia and Alt have given their in-depth expert comments (aura to both for that!), all I've got left to do is pick up some minor things. Yellow is for spelling errors, orange for suggestions, and limegreen for other sorts of comments.

In general, I recommend this entry to be included in this week's update!


Overview:
Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno is a widely known warrior among his tribe, the Eanian ice tribe of Northern Sarvonia, who rose quickly to the esteemed rank of warlord during tumultuous times. The most notable of his achievements was the reclaiming of the Eanin settlement, located in the northeast of the Eanian territory on the Icelands’ Coast, from the Tarkyn ice tribe. He is currently in a self-imposed exile from the Icelands, after the retaking of Eanin, and could prove a plethora of information on the life of the Eanian tribe.

Appearance:
Brynjar is roughly-hewn creature. Roughly one ped, two fores, and two palmspan (palmspans) in height, he easily blends into the southern crowd. (“Southern” is a bit of a broad category. I suggest you mention straight away where Brynjar lives at the time of writing. Otherwise hasty people who only read the first half of your entry may go look for him in Strata (at the southern tip of Sarvonia)”) Life in the south has melted the excess fat so essential to northern life, pulling (putting a[?]) strong relief to his already harsh, angular features (or maybe say: “… etching his already harsh … features into an even sharper relief”?). His face is squared, soft curves pulled into hard lines. Most often he is a sour figure; his thin lips are tipped downwards and bright grey eyes burn from under heavy brows, accented by high cheekbones. Numerous wrinkles ring his eyes, heavy around the bottom lids. His nose is wide, almost consistent in girth from bridge to the thick tip. Dark brown hair falls in sleek sheets, braided and twisted in a haphazard array, and provides a heavy frame liberally streaked with grey and white. Even in exile, Brynjar keeps his face clean-shaven to mark his rank as warlord. His skin is darkly bronzed in the face and hands, much more so than other areas of the body. Many crossing scars cover his hands, heavy around the knuckle area. There is also some scarring on the back of the head, causing some erratic hair growth around it. It is impossible to miss the red, thick-lined pinnip symbol on his throat. (What an eloquent, evocative description!)

Brynjar has tried to keep to his traditional dressing habits. The one article which he refuses to be parted with is the white bear pelt, which he wears much like a Santharian would wear a cloak, with one heavy, clawed paw thrown over the shoulder. He has, out of necessity, adapted to the southern style of dress. (This contradicts the first sentence of this paragraph, no?) He is partial to the elk hides of the south, finding a moderate familiarity in their textures, and has trousers fashioned from the skins. He has light tunics made from strange cloths that he is unfamiliar with. A close look may warrant a reminder of his northern, primitive origin by the weapons on his belt, crafted from antler and bone and stone rather than wood and steel. But it is the stone talisman and its red pinnip symbol that mark him truly as foreign.

The unfamiliar warmth of the south has done nothing to prevent Brynjar from donning his red and white war paints during the months of his homelands summer, but it is a rare occasion that he uses the charcoal-based mixture to coat around his eyes, since the glare of the sun in the south is greatly lessened when snow is not present year-round. The face is painted white, and a red handprint placed diagonally across it and excess red paint is used to coat the arms up to the elbow.

Personality:

An aggressive, hard man, Brynjar is a trying person to be around. Time in the wealth of the south has done nothing to quiet the untamed, instinctive nature of the man, and he still uses aggression as a fallback when confronted with things he does not understand or wish to accept. A naturally distrustful person, he has a distain for anything unusual, or different. This has led him to leading a rather solitary life in the south, searching (add “in vain”?) for a type of kinship that he knew in the north.

A careful observer may notice the grief that wears on him. It manifests in times of prolonged silence and distant looks when confronted with accusation and slurs that would usually be greeted with fists and bare blades. In the luxury of the south, he finds much time for reflection in the hours that would have been filled with hunting and battle and celebration.

Biography:

Birth and Youth in the North:
Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno was born in a small cave as Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu. The exact location can be estimated to a day’s travel north by sled from the settlement of Eanin on the eastern island of the Eanian territory. Four years later, his brother Bjorrar was born in the Eanin settlement.

Conflict was a common sight in Brynjar’s youth. The lanne was no stranger to assaults, living in the permanent settlement Eanin, for that was the way of the north, to take with strength. As all male children of the tribe, Brynjar was trained in combat and the hunt. He learned how to track prey, craft weapons from antler and tusk and bone, and mark the change of the seasons.

Battle on the Ice:
Fourteen winters past, Brynjar killed his first man—an Inlerin warrior— and earned his civil rights in a tribe war that had come late in the season, with the first ice. Between the islands, the ice was soft from the summer melt, too soft to wage battle upon. Many men from both tribes were lost to the depths, this included both Brynjar’s father, leader of the lanne, and the Lanrul of the tribe.

Weeks later, Brynjar reached his fifteenth winter and he, along with four others, was heralded into the warriors of the tribe with the Warrior’s Chant. The shaving of their hair marked a boy’s transition into adulthood, the new growth would make them men, and battle merit would determine how they wore it. They were branded in red, a strong-lined visage of a pinnip on the waves was tattooed on their throats.

Breaking of the Tribe:
A warrior from Gourdynn was chosen to be the next Eanian Lanrul, and under his guidance those on the smaller western island began to prosper. Those to the east were not so fortunate, even under the leadership of a strong warlord in Eanin. They were under siege, in every direction other tribes encroached and raided small nomadic lannes and slew their kin. In the seasons to come, few children were born and fewer warriors were initiated to fill their desperately depleted ranks.

Contempt grew for the prosperous in the west, while Brynjar and the lanne lost their seat in Eanin to the invading Tarkyns and were forced to take to the ice shelf. The old went hungry first, and were given swift deaths by their sons. Then the women, mates and mothers, became scarce as the warriors tried to safeguard their future—boys forced to wear the mantles of dead men. There were only two boys left in the lanne, soon to be initiated as warriors, though they had done their duty as such long before those days.

They starved, and the west grew powerful.

The White Bear:
For days at a time Brynjar would wander the shelf in solitude. Twenty winters, unmated with no heir, and too thin to survive the encroaching winter. The events on the ice would shape his future, and that of his tribe. It was far on the ice he spotted it, a cloaked pinnip and a late-born pup basking too far from their breathing hole. He was sure he could catch the cow, but so was she—the white bear.

The events of this day are passed on, orally by the women that keep the history:

“Dark, dark, Phobit did not shine over our people these days. Aleshnir refused to give Grau-eck-Shanno the bounty of his children, for he had lost the seat of his father and it started new war between Aleshnir and Zundefor. And as the child of Phobit and Nechya stood witness to Zundefor’s glory, Aleshnir slipped away into Asendin’s cold embrace. In his fury, Zundefor struck down Grau-eck-Shanno with a might swing of his paw.

Across the ice, he flew like pinnip through water. And the white bear huffed and snorted and hollered in a blind rage, for he had been so close to catching Aleshnir in their eternal struggle. He charged Grau-eck-Shanno, curled up on the ice like a babe in his mother’s belly, and he smacked him again. His teeth scraped Grau-eck-Shanno's head, his mighty claws dug through gloves to hands.

In pity for Grau-eck-Shanno, Asterlin bestowed upon him the great speed of the striking light. In his splendour, Zundefor rose tall to deliver the final blow. But Grau-eck-Shanno wielded his white claws and slew down Zundefor, and by his grace, in honor of Grau-eck-Shanno's conquest, he bestowed upon him the fruit of his child and returned to the chaos.”

An Icemut sled from his lanne bore witness to this struggle, and bore Brynjar back to their small encampment on the ice. It was that day that Brynjardyr Runol-fey-Shyu was given the name Grau-eck-Shanno and known forth as Whiteclaw, for the bone knife he used to strike down the white bear.

Warlord of the East:
The night following the killing of the white bear, the carcass was skinned and set to roast on a spit and the pelt was given to Brynjar, as was his right by conquest. The warlord of the small lanne, friend to Brynjar’s late father, stripped the scruff from his face and named him warlord for his heroism.

The melting of the ice brought new life. The lannes of the eastern island began to come to the ice shelf to bear witness to the fur of the white bear. Brynjar’s impoverished tribe began to swell with new faces, young boys listening to the old women tell of the struggle against the bear and youthful warriors preparing for the battle season. It seemed that the east was beginning to finally prosper again, for game was plenty and the Eanians were beginning to recover from their drastic losses in seasons past.

War with the Tarkyns:
The summers to come were red.

Brynjar rallied his warriors and razed villages to the north, where Inlerins camped on the ice, and to the south, where Tarkyns had gathered around the conquered settlement of Eanin. By right of conquest, he took young women to bear sons, domesticated herds to feed warriors and pelts from the fallen, leather from their feet, to dress them.

The warriors began painting their faces differently from their kin to the west. They were white-faced demons, with red handprints smeared on their faces, their arms red up to the elbows. Along the coast, they passed like a storm, snarling faces and gnashing teeth. Their strongest foes were eaten on the battlefield, the heart given to the warrior who showed the most prowess. 

The Eanians proved themselves a force to be reckoned, but their clashes with the Tarkyns proved a double-edged blade. For every scout party they took, the Tarkyns took Eanian slaves and livestock. As winter came, their skirmishes became more desperate, and no mercy was given. Neither side took slaves and spoils, just flesh and blood.

Meeting of the Lanruls:
Brynjar was twenty two winters, and that summer he would witness his first Langral Meet at the side of a Lanrul who, before that Icebreaking, he couldn’t have put a face to.

From the wealthy settlement of Gourdynn on the west coast of Eanian territory, the Lanrul traveled across the territory. He hand-picked warriors of great renown, who would serve as escort and witness, as he made way to the meeting of the ice tribe Lanruls in Langral, a modest settlement in Aeidin territory. As the Lanrul walked across the territory, he heard many times of the tribe on the shelf and the man who killed a white bear with a white knife.

The Lanrul’s coming to the ice shelf was not met with celebration and feasting, but with dark eyes and sallow faces, slowly regaining their fullness. Food was still hard to come by, with the Tarkyns to the south harrying the coast and driving the herds south to their own settlements. It was in war paint the warriors of the lanne greeted their Lanrul.

Such open hostility would have been punishable by death, but the Eanians could not afford the loss of another warrior, especially by their own hand. The story of the white bear had spread from mouth to ear of slaves, taken by Inlerin, captured by Eanians, stolen by Tarkyns, all the way down the coast. The north respects strength, and other tribes would expect such a warrior to be at the meet. So Brynjar left the shelf and went south and west. The Eanians traveled in two groups, westerners painted with red and white stripes, and the easterners with red hands on white faces.

East of the settlement of Aeidin, the Eanians came upon Langral and laid their weapons outside her walls. Warriors in green and black and blue and orange and red stared in deafening silence, and the weakness of the tribe was displayed for all to see. They saw white-faced Eanians, whispered of by Inlerin and Tarkyn, and striped Eanians, and the displayed wealth. They saw white fur on the shoulders of two different men.
 
There they stood, Eanians. Divided. Weak. Prey.

The establishment of the ceasefire was marked by the sun rising to his highest point of the day, and the Lanruls and their warriors trekked from Langral to the hotsprings and washed the paints and dyes from their skin. For this summer they were not Eanian and Tarykn or Remusian and Tokarian, Vertan and Filmainrim, Santarim and Inlerin and Sarmanian.

For this summer, they were Icetribesmen.

Early Winter:
The summer held a rare time of peace, but it would die with the coming of the snows. The Eanians were held together by strings, by the need for a false front of unity to ward off the attacks of other tribes. But the meet in Langral had sent a message to the other tribes, and the battle season would be long and red. No salvation would come if the east were to fall.

That winter, the Eanians of the east kept close to their ice shelf camp. That winter, the east prepared for battle. They fastened claws to glove and boot, wore the faces of animals upon their heads with long teeth and red-painted rocks for eyes. They would not survive through strength alone, and if they could not drive their foes back with spear and axe then they would do so with fear. The tribes came in force, Inlerin and Tarkyn and Faeron and Aeidin.

The east was ready to fall.

But as the second month of the season came, so did a bitter cold and snarling snows. Winter had come, with ice and wind and snow. Barely able to see a wison length ahead of themselves, Brynjar and his warriors dug furrows into the ice shelf around their camp, deep enough to trap even the tallest of men. Many fell victim to the traps, and more to spear and axe and knife in the white of an early winter. Those who didn’t fled across the ice, or starved upon it.

The early winter of that season would give them a summer without assault, a summer to wage war on tribes that dared not cross the ice paths to the island of the Eanians.

The Passing of a Mother:
Twenty and five winters, Brynjar was a pride to behold. Winter came and the herds moved from the valleys south, and snow took his mother. There were no tears shed for her, for she was old and long past her childbearing years, another mouth to feed. Winter took an old woman, and brought a man from the far reaches of the eastern island, across the ice from the Aeidin settlement. He came in gleaming plate, with a train of slaves, astride the back of a great bull wison, offering gifts of good faith.

Summer of the Whale:
The Icemelting came with a vengeance, where the ice receded further than it had done in over a century, by count of the wise women who held their legacy. With it came a white whale carcass, flesh rotting and falling from the bone. Some revered it, a gift of bone to craft into spear and axe and knife and go to war with Aleshnir’s blessing. Others said it was an evil thing, and the gods were in a fury, punishing the Eanin with a hot summer and rotten meat.

Brynjar set his men about the carcass to collect the bones. They crafted many weapons and talismans from bone, sewing strips to jerkin and tunic and boot and glove. But Brynjar felt the heat upon his mind, and he did not lead his men to war with their kin. Nor did he seek to reclaim Eanin.

At twenty-seven winters, Brynjar took his first mate.

Re-Taking of Eanin, and Exile:
The woman who birthed Brynjar’s firstborn was a southern slave with a solemn look and their union was affectionless. Brynjar held no grief at her passing in the childbed. At thirty winters old, Brynjar held his firstborn, a strong whelp named Bjornol. He thought of days to come, teaching his son to hunt the pinnip that was their lifeblood, to throw an ax and strike down a man. It was the birth of his first son that pushed Brynjar to war.

But the summer was fruitless and blood made the ocean run red. It took six winters for Brynjar to take Eanin. But the victory was hollow. The Tarkyns had slain his son, and his brother’s son, and many of his kin’s sons like thieves in the night. The Lanrul of the tribe, hidden away in Gourdynn while the east fought the Tarkyns, was struck down by a white bear on the ice in the Bay of Calnith. And that too was hollow.

Grief for his son and shame at what he had done to his tribe led Brynjar south, and he kept going south, and would keep going south, until there was nowhere left to go.

Man of Snow and Ice:
In his exile, Brynjar wandered south. The north was frozen, and high mountain peaks that seemed so far away became closer and closer. He took painstaking care to venture far from any signs of settlements, passing across the vacant fields of Aeidin and into the small mountains that marked the border of the Tokarian territory. Along the far edge of the territory, he skirted the river and headed towards to the Gathorn Mountains.

Reluctance set his pace, dragging slow and threatening to end him with hunger. It was like a sickness, pulling strength from his legs and resolve from his mind and he longed for familiar faces. A journey that should have taken a fortnight of swift travel had taken almost two moons. But the southern peaks of the mountains offered strange new sights: trees, as tall as him and a few that stood higher, bent and twisted by winds coming off the peaks. 

Tracks wandered up the southward slopes, and he followed them. It was there, among the high peaks where no tree dare take root, that he encountered his first ‘southerner’. At first it appeared to be a small, pale child, hardly half his height, a round lump in heavy, fur-lined wool. Back to him, the child would be an easy target, up to the elbows in snow and prodding a network of uncovered roots. A head popped up briefly, observed some scratches on a skin and scratched some more on it. The child had an aged face, wrinkles around the eyes and a thinning dark head of hair. A girl with a woman’s face. Unknown to Brynjar, she was not a child but the Gnomish botanist Eleanna Kalrinwenens.

He reached for his knife, but could he kill a child? An unarmed child like the boys in his lanne had been, when the Takaryns had slit their throats in the night. What would one more be? One more would be one too many. Brynjar retreated back into the valley, knife still on his belt. The woman-child was long from his mind.

Brynjar hunted in the valley, rich with game that dug through inches of melting snow to the awakening greenery underneath. He caught snow hares with sinew snares, and a fatty, thickly furred animal that tasted much better than lean rabbit meat. Tracking another of these furred creatures with webbed feet, far from the cool snowcap-fed river it seemed to live in, he found the child again.

Or rather stumbled upon. In a terrified spurt, the creature had darted through a thick bramble, and crouched over, Brynjar followed. And there she was, stirring something in a small pot over a modest fire. He jerked his spear from the fleeing creature and jabbed its point towards her. The smell of stewing meat fogged his head, the lean rabbits he had dined on before he found the swimmer had left him hungry for fatter catches.

Eleanna set down her spoon and showed him her hands, a gesture even he could understand. Slowly, he lowered his spear. Then the sounds came, a rapid mix of grunts and rumbles that meant nothing. A second string, and then a third.  She gestured to the skins in front of the fire, and ladled a scoop of her stew into a wooden cup and held it out. He stared.

Brynjar perched himself on his haunches, fingers still curled around his spear, a wison length from the fire. Eleanna lifted the spoon to her mouth, blew, and ate. He watched still, and nothing happened. Again she offered. He didn’t move. In the brush, a stick cracked under pressure, and Brynjar was gone, hunched low and moving swift through the valley.

This continued for weeks, mistaken encounters from over a stone’s throw away and glimpses at even further. Figures among trees, shapes among rocks. The second time he encountered her camp, she was slicing a fat swimmer into chunks for her stew. Their proximity had ensured Brynjar that she was alone, and no threat to him. But strange things were best kept at a distance.

He was about to disappear into the brush when she saw him. The little thing hopped up and scampered close, holding her hands out and repeating a single sound, over and over and over. And for a fleeting moment a strangeness overcame him, a question, did she know what the swimmer was called? (I have to admit that I still don’t know what animals this is. Is this animal in the compendium? I think it might be useful to be clear. Many people reading your entry will not necessarily be familiar with Northern Sarvonian fauna. My apologies if I am missing something. I'm about to go out and want to finish these comments, in the hope that this entry will make it into this weekend's update.)

It was a small change that would lead to so many more. That afternoon, Brynjar sat in front of her small fire and ate her stew in his cold silence. The initial communications were, strained at best. The weeks that it had taken for him to become at ease with Eleanna’s presence were all but erased by this new proximity. He saw a child, harmless, but he was on edge.

Days passed before he would stay longer than the time it took to slurp down a rich stew, and many more before they could hold a conversation. If it could be called such, the heavy-handed gestures and frustrated expletives. But Eleanna was not so different from the tribeswomen, preparing meat and gathering herbs or berries. She pointed out shrubs and bent trees, naming them, and telling him of places where snow came for only a few moon turns and then was gone and places where it never came at all.

Brynjar wondered what they may look like, these strange places or trees thrice as tall as him. He couldn’t go home, no matter how bad his gut ached for the ice and the simple life he left behind. The only way to go was south, so Brynjar travelled with Eleanna and their conversations became almost coherent in broken words and confused phrases as they walked across the Heaths of Wilderon.

As spring began to fade, Brynjar found the heat of the southern summer almost unbearable. He was forced to discard his traditional pinnip clothes, and adopt lighter dress. It brought about his first interaction with a clearly non-human race—the Rhom-Oc. Eleanna acted mediator between the nomads, though Brynjar held fast to his axe and the orc settled close to the side of the massive warg. The elk hides were much thinner than those he was accustomed to, but the texture was familiar and the lightness astounded him.

It was after this encounter that Brynjar learned of Eleanna’s Gnomish origin. This sent him away for many days; a man of the ice did not let the world into his home, especially if that world was female and non-human. What use did he have for tiny people or green men on black beasts? The sickness in his gut made him turn northward.

But he returned. The months of travel in solitude were fresh in his mind, though long past, and even the company of this half-creature was more agreeable to facing the strange greenness of the south alone. Slowly, painfully so, Brynjar began to let tiny pieces of the south into his world of ice and snow, and the words came easier. Brynjar was able to relay patches of his life, settled in the foothills of the Imlith Mountains. Heavily edited, and vague, a complex world trying to fit into the language of the south.

Importance:

Brynjar was a strong figure head of the Eanians of the eastern island in times of great prosperity and in great hardship. His conquering of the white bear, interpreted as a gift from the gods in Eanian lore, coupled with the lack of guidance from their Lanrul in Gourdynn, painted Brynjar as Lanrul of the eastern island in all but name.

This brought great prosperity to his lanne. Warlords of small lanne merged with Brynjar’s tribe, and so their ranks grew with an influx of warriors and young boys and mature girls fit to mate. It was also a means to the splitting of the Eanian tribe, those on the western island and those on the larger eastern island.

Instead of taking arms against his kin, as many would have supported, Brynjar set to reclaim the settlement of Eanin on the eastern coast, for his child. Though he conquered the Tarkyns and drove them forth from Eanin, many were lost and in his grief, he fled the Icelands.

Brynjar is a wealth of information. He has extensive knowledge of the Icelands, survival in the far north and the customs of not only his tribe, but information on other ice tribes from their conflicts. There is no telling what this knowledge may reveal, or how it could alter not only the lives of Santharians, but the lives of the Eanians and other ice tribes of the Icelands.

Footnote:

Langral is the name of the settlement where the Langral Meeting occurs. Here the Lanruls of the ice tribes meet once every twelve winters and establish a cease fire for the summer's battle season.
 
Lanne is the ice tribe’s term for a minor clan within a tribe; every tribe is made up of many of these minor clans.

Lanrul is the ice tribe’s term for the leader of the entire tribe, while leaders of the minor clans are called warlords.

Aleshnir is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the sea animal spirit in the form of a white whale but not limited to that form.

Asendin is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the force of the sea.

Asterlin is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the force of lightning.

Nechya is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the female night goddess.

Phobit is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the male day god.

Zundefor is one of fifteen ice tribe gods, the land animal spirit in the form of a white bear but also, not limited to that form.
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Brynjar Grau-eck-Shanno
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« Reply #21 on: 09 February 2013, 06:07:18 »

@Ta'lia
I didn't think it was that intimidating, but I think the face is a little too Anglo for what I was going for. Hopefully I'll be able to fix it after throwing down some more values and flesh it all out.

@Shab
Okay, tackled those pesky spelling typos. Altered the generalization of 'southern' to narrow it down, and reworded the phrasing that describes the clothing and in a couple of other places.

That really vague swimming creature actually isn't part of the compendium at this particular point in time but hopefully will be someday in the near future though (on the backburner to stew some ideas for now).
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Artimidor Federkiel
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« Reply #22 on: 09 February 2013, 16:10:06 »

Okeydokey then... I'll see to include this one in this week's update, Brynjar! :) Congrats on your first entry up on site!  cool  thumbup
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Shabakuk Zeborius Anfang
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« Reply #23 on: 09 February 2013, 19:20:11 »

Splendid! We have a new "Aspiring Member"! Congratulations, Brynjar!

(A newcomer becomes an aspiring member when her or his first entry is included in the compendium.)

EDIT: Oh, and I look forward to reading about that water creature someday. Is it similar to a platypus, I wonder?
« Last Edit: 09 February 2013, 19:26:39 by Shabakuk Zeborius Anfang » Logged

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