Human, explorer, first appeared in chapter 09 of Scattered Stones
“Knavesmire!” The rough voice hacked the name as if it were phlegm.
Jack Somerled’s ears twitched, but his body remained relaxed as his fork poked a potato and lifted it to his mouth. From his corner seat in the tavern, he had a clear view of the scraggly group of mixed-raced men hoarded around a table slinging ale and feasting on plates of meat.
“If he avers to have journeyed there, he’s peddling featherless fletching.” The heavily bearded human chuckled.
“I stated not that he’d journeyed,” said a hauflin, “only that he’d seen it.”
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Lord Dirck Landis
Human, lord of Aruam Castle, first appeared in chapter 05 of Shadows in the Stone
The door slammed and Lord Dirck Landis jumped from his chair to see who had entered. Two of his senior guards dragged a prisoner into the room and tossed him against the wall.
“My Lord,” Corporal Franklin motioned towards the tattered elf sprawled on the floor. “He is suspected of using magic within the town walls.”
“It was ignite powder!” the young man shouted. “Harmless!”
“Witnesses claim otherwise,” said the guard.
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Dwarf, sword fighter, prisoner at Blackvale Castle, born Glen Tosh, first appeared in Scattered Stones.
“Stop!” shouted the guard. “You can’t go in there!”
Kellyn ignored the quackpod and kept running. As she drew water from the well in the courtyard, she had seen Merk cross the open balcony and enter his study. He had been absent from Blackvale Castle for several days, and this was the first opportunity to inform him of the tragedy that had occurred to his favourite prisoner.
She reached the door, flung it open and raced inside. Merk stood admiring a painting on the far wall. He glanced in her direction but remained silent.
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Human, cartographer, born Maskil, lives Wandsworth, first appeared in the short story “Destiny Governed their Lives”.
Emerson Wheatcroft neatly scrolled the word Goshen near the circle representing the village on the map. He blew gently on the hide to quicken the drying time. It had taken him a fortnight to reach the labelling phase; the customer required it to be practical yet pleasant to the eye.
He rested in his chair and admired his artisanship. At this point—with the mountains, rivers and settlements dotting the landscape—he felt satisfied. The labelling was a mere detail, an important one, but one many people achieved successfully.
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Lord Merk Lindrum
Human, Lord of Blackvale Castle, sorcerer, first appeared in chapter 27 of Shadows in the Stone
The brush touched the canvas lightly, dabbing grey shadows on the undersides of fluffy clouds floating outside the window. Satisfied, Merk Lindrum turned his attention to the cat lounging on the sill. It also required more shadowing.
He glanced around the easel and scrutinized his pet; its white fur shined as it lay stretched in the sun, sleeping. A few strokes on canvas and it would be perfect. His fan brush gently stroked the watercolours together to create tiny hairs that stabbed into the shadow.
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Lord Laird Mulryan
Dwarf, lord of Aruam Castle, first appeared in chapter 05 of Shadows in the Stone
The sun shined in the window, and Lord Laird Mulryan leant on the sill looking over the grounds of Aruam Castle and Maskil. The morning has been pleasant; he had enjoyed the day’s first ration surrounded by those he loved most. The small gestures, smiles and friendly chatter left him feeling as if he were the luckiest man in Ath-o’Lea.
He sighed, already missing their company and longing to return, but two days were all he could muster to be away from his post. Significant matters needed tending; he had to put the order in for new recruits to bolster the lower ranks. The combined numbers of foot soldiers and castle guards was to be maintained at one thousand fighting men and from his calculations, they were severely deficient.
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Isla of Maura
Hauflin, prisoner at Blackvale Castle, first appeared in chapter 01 of Shadows in the Stone
Isla outlined the military vest, pressing lightly so if the line had to be erased, it wouldn’t leave an indent in the paper. The curve of the shoulder was a difficult part. It took five attempts to get the other shoulder perfect. The black lead moved slowly as she imagined the sun shining on the top of the blue material. In the sunshine is where they had spent their happiest times, and here is where the lightest of touches would accent the glow. She shaded lightly, then used a finger to smudge the colour just right.
A short time later, Isla sat back to admire her efforts. The eyes of her das stared at her as if he would walk across the tower roof and tell her to get ready for bed; they had a busy day tomorrow. Perhaps they’d ride along the Shulie or take a hike to Moon Meadow. She’d ask if Liam could come.
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Dwarf, wheelwright, part owner of The Spoke ‘N Waggon shop, first appeared in chapter 11 of Shadows in the Stone
A boot sailed through the air in the dimly-lit tavern. Joris caught sight of it in time to lean back so only its wind brushed his nose. He embraced his mug of ale against his chest and looked for the origin of the projectile. He saw a woman glaring at him from twenty feet away. The young human beside her raced behind Joris, snatched his boot and sped off.
“Chloe.” Joris raised his mug. “You chose a green one. He won’t be back.”
“I chose an inconsiderate, deceitful rogue who is less appealing than the hind end of a troglodyte.”
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Human, herbalist, first appeared in chapter 10 of Shadows in the Stone
Selina Burkenshaw slowly poured the steaming tea into the mug. The mug full, she returned the pot to the stove top. Scooping a dollop of honey from the jar, she stirred it gently into the hot liquid. Once sufficiently mixed, she drew the warm spoon over her tongue to taste the sweetness. She picked up the mug and turned to her mate.
Farlan remained in the same position since he entered their dwelling. He rested in the chair near the stove watching their first-born sleep. Their daughter—barely one year old—brought him much joy, but even she could not break the spell he appeared to be under since his return from patrol two days earlier. The outing was supposed to be five days, but it lasted ten. As usual, he couldn’t share details of the excursion, but the permanent grimace and the solemn mood spoke volumes. His lack of chatter also hinted at the worry teasing his mind. She hadn’t seen him this distraught since the inquest into Lady Glynn Dasia’s murder.
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Dwarf, herbalist, dress maker, first appeared in chapter 11 of Shadows in the Stone
Rhiannon Darrow untied a bundle of chamomile from the drying rack and placed it in a cloth sack. She carried it downstairs to the small room behind the counter of the Forest Herb and Bakery shop and set it on the table. From the time she was young, she had spent many hours preparing herbs for sale. She could now identify dozens of plants by smell alone.
A bell rang, and Rhiannon looked up to see a familiar young dwarf enter the shop. Through her narrow path of sight, she watched Carbrey. He was handsome and charming, and he often came when she tended the counter.
Leaving the table, she emerged from hiding. “Carbrey, can I help you?”
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