Keep on Shadowfell
Khorin stands at an unimpressive 5’7" and weighs in at an infuriatingly average 165 pounds. At 41, after decades spent as a wanderer and sell-sword, her features show a noticeable degree of wear. Most noticeable, of course, is the relic of an old blow that nearly took her life, leaving her left horn shattered and jagged, her left eye blind and bisected by a thick, white scar, and her left arm, missing. She retains use of her left arm with the help of an enchanted armor fitting that replaces it, responding to her thoughts as if controlled by her own muscles. Like many Tieflings, her skin is a ruddy tan hue, and her hair, kept cropped short and wild, is a luminous red-violet. Her blind eye is a milky white while her other is a deep, intense red.
Often coming across as somber or even hostile, Khorin’s rare moments of levity are marked by sarcasm and snark. She takes a cynical view of life, but clings to honor like a bad habit.
“There, that ought to do it,” the wizard Halendril grunted as he clicked the last bit of steel into its fitting. “Test it out, will you?”
Khorin complied wordlessly, thinking almost unconsciously to move the metal approximation of her old limb, raising it from his workbench and fluttering its fingers. She shot him a half-grin. “Feels perfect, old man. You have my thanks.”
Halendril snorted. “I’d rather have your coin! All the same …”
She’d spent almost a year now working to get back into fighting shape, and though she wasn’t nearly as fit as she was in her prime, she was no slouch on the battle arena, either. “I’ll have enough to pay you back with interest soon. You know I’m good for it.”
“Of course,” he replied, half-mocking. “Though I do wish you’d consider a less dangerous line of work. For one, you wouldn’t need repairs so frequently. Money saved is just as good as money earned.”
“It’s what I’m good at,” she sighed, examining the gleaming metal in the firelight. “Could you seriously picture me as a farmer? Or a fishmonger? Or, heavens forbid,” she grinned, her sharp incisors catching the light, “a seamstress?”
Halendril let out an enormous guffaw and slapped her hard of the back. It was good she had a steady frame, because the blow might have toppled a slighter woman. “No indeed, my friend, I suppose I couldn’t! Still …”
“I know,” she cut the wizard off. His concern for her well-being was touching, but having him repeat it too often made her uncomfortable. She let a moment of silence pass, then reached for her satchel. “I’d better be going. I need to get some rest before I depart tomorrow.”
“Aye, no sense in letting fatigue put you off your guard. Off with you, then!”
Khorin nodded and started for the door.
“Oh, and Khorin!” Halendril called to her.
She paused at the threshold. “Yes?”
The wizard’s normally jovial features turned somber. “The bastard may have taken your arm, but he could never take who you are. Remember, you have nothing to prove.”
Khorin grinned, a bit more warmly than she was wont. “Of course I do,” she replied. “Every damned day.”
Halendril didn’t look fully appeased, but he offered up a weak smile nonetheless. With that, she turned and set out into the night.
She chuckled to herself as a pang of sadness struck her. After all her youth living with her parents’ merchant caravan, all her years working odd jobs from town to town, taking up work as a sell-sword, and after all her years serving with the Red Raven Mercenary Guild, it took being found half-dead in a ravine by a hermetic wizard for her to finally find a friend. And now she was leaving him behind, just like all the rest.
Because her captain was out there, the man who raised her up only to strike her down and leave her to die. And he was going to pay for his betrayal.