Winter Willow

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BACKGROUND

Winter (born Wintwyda Guolhaemrwyn) knows little about her early childhood. If asked, she'll claim she was born at sea. From a very young age - as soon as she was physically able - she began to take on tasks around her parents' privateering vessel such as deck-swabbing and navigation. When she was very young, her parents - Guolhaemr and Sterrwyda - were highly successful pirates known for their pragmatism. While they could be brutal when they felt it was necessary, they generally didn't go out of their way to rape, pillage, and plunder if it wasn't needed to get their gil.

As young Wintwyda grew older, however, she saw a dramatic change in not only her parents, but their entire crew. First, Guolhaemr had his entire crew get face tattoos. Soon after, the pirates' activities became increasingly brutal and violent - causing destruction and suffering seemingly for its own sake - and they began worshipping the god-like sea serpent Leviathan. Everyone around the teenage Wintwyda seemed taken in and enthusiastic about these changes, and she was left to wonder how everyone around her could be going so insane while she stayed the same. Later, she'd learn that the crew had been tempered by Leviathan, and that she'd been spared by a mysterious and uncommon gift called the Echo.

Confused and terrified, Winter found an opportunity to escape when her parents were selling their stolen goods to a group of merchants. Stealing some of the coin from her parents herself, the teenage Sea Wolf paid one of the merchants to take her "anywhere but here" in his carriage. He agreed, and drove her to his own destination - Ul'dah.

A Sea Wolf stands out like a sore thumb in the Jewel of the Desert, but Wintwyda was able to make it work for her. She was able to secure work as a "fearsome, foreign, exotic" bodyguard to Ul'dah's wealthy. As she became more established, she began to branch out: she trained at the Ul'dahn pugilist's guild, took on different sorts of odd jobs, worked with mercenary companies off and on, and even did some contract-based odd jobs for the Immortal Flames' Free Brigade. No matter who she spoke to, she always refused to give a last name for herself - instead opting to go simply by "Wintwyda".

It was during this time she met her to-be husband, Kincaid Vannekin. He is a Seeker miqo'te, born Q'nkeyhd Tia, but he was adopted into a hyuran family at a young age and chose to change the spelling of his first name to be easier for them as well as adopt their last name. The two were assigned a mercenary job together defending a trade caravan from raiding Amal'jaa. They worked well together, and immediately bonded over being the "oddballs" of their respective races. He was the first one to start calling her "Winter", originally just as a nickname. The two have been inseperable since.

The two spent a few years together before deciding to become full-fledged adventurers. Like the Vannekins had taught him, Kincaid taught Winter to read. Eventually, the two agreed that they wanted to see the big wide crazy world they'd read about in books, and together they decided to sign up for the Adventurer's Guild. The application called for both a first and a last name, so for a variety of reasons - she'd already gotten used to "Winter" as a nickname, she'd had potential clients mangle "Wintwyda", and she liked the Hellsguard naming style - the roegadyn decided to officially change her name to Winter Willow.

Winter and Kincaid lived for a while as wandering adventurers, taking whatever jobs came their way and traveling around the world, until they ran into W'komara Jhida and Renoko'to Molkot in a tavern one day. Overhearing that they needed to hire more adventurers to be part of their company, the couple began to ask questions. It turned out, W'komara and Renoko'to were the leaders of a group of errant knights called the Knights of the Sky. Both Winter and Kincaid liked the sound of being part of such a company, so they signed on immediately.

Winter has continued to serve Sky Knight interests, although she's had a busy life on the side as well. While visiting Ul'dah, she helped an old refugee man deal with Brass Bades who'd been harassing him. He wasn't able to pay her, but in thanks for her kindness he gifted her with a treasured family heirloom - claiming he saw in her a spirit that reminded him of the Monks of Rhalgr.

It turned out that the old man (Worg Bloodmoon) had a hot-headed refugee granddaughter named Lem Bloodmoon. She was jealous and bitter at first, but eventually she and WInter were able to work through their differences and become friends.

While visiting and training with her friend, Winter caught the eye of a highly eccentric Red Mage looking for students to help spread her art. The woman was a Hellsguard roegadyn of a little over fourty summers named Summer Oak. When she happened to see Winter Willow sparring in the Coliseum with her friend Lem and heard her name spoken, Summer decided it was fate that Winter would be her student, and she challenged the younger Sea Wolf to a duel - if Winter lost, she'd have to study under Summer.

Winter, of course, lost the duel. As a result, Summer gave Winter a soulstone, a rapier, and a spell focus and began teaching her art. They trained together for a couple of months before heading into Ala Mhigo to support the rebellion. Unfortunately, Summer was killed in the massacre at Rhalgr's Reach.

Nowadays, Winter is mostly alone in her studies of Red Magic, but she carries on fighting in this style and constantly seeks more knowledge of the old Red Mage orders.

APPEARANCE

Average height for a roegadyn, tall compared to most Eorzeans. Winter is muscular and athletic with light greyish-blue skin and backswept royal blue hair. Her features are soft, and her resting expression is kind - although her golden eyes have a bit of a mischievous sparkle to them.
Aspects That Stand Out:
Blue tattoo - right cheek.
Freckles
A scar across her nose and left cheek.

PERSONALITY

Cheery, friendly, warm, and outgoing, Winter doesn't see anyone as a stranger - just a friend that hasn't been made yet.

L I K E S

People in general. Winter's very friendly. Unless given a strong reason not to like someone, she tends to like everyone by default.
Merlwyb Bloefheswyn. Despite being a member of the Immortal Flames, Winter hero-worships the leader of the Maelstrom.
Meat and other savory foods. Gotta get your protein!


D I S L I K E S

Armor and slow, large weapons. Winter prefers to be light, quick, and nimble. Suits of armor and large weapons that take longer to swing (such as greatswords or battleaxes) are her least likely choice when there's a fight.
Piracy. She has an underlying suspicion of pirate-types. She's mostly able to keep it unspoken and not let it interfere too much with social interaction, but it'll come out if she's pressed for it.

H O B B I E S

Reading. Winter loves books, especially illustrated books and adventure stories. The Haropo Popoto series is her favorite; she's a proud Gryffinbeak!
Stargazing. Ever since she was a child, she's enjoyed looking at the stars.

S T R E N G T H S

Echo. Immune to being tempered. Can speak and understand with those using any language.
Surprisingly Nimble for her size and strength. Being big and strong is kind of expected for a roegadyn, and she definitely is. What's more unusual is how quick and nimble she is.
Highly Coordinated. Winter has a natural knack for learning skills that require physical coordination and motion. She's a great dancer, and she can learn how to use any weapon type quickly.

W E A K N E S S E S

Slow to learn magic. She knows the potential to use her red magic well is in there, she's just struggling with the casting part.
Horrible cook. Never put her on kitchen duty. Ever.
Terrible singer. Your character's poor ears.

M O T I V A T I O N S

Do Good - Winter wants to leave the world a little bit of a better place than when she found it.
Enjoy Life - She doesn't want to get bogged down by sadness and despair, and doesn't like seeing this in others.


RELATIONSHIP STATUS LEGEND
Family Married Friend Acquaintance $ Business Deceased Unsure
NPC
Lem Bloodmoon, reluctant friend. () - Ala Mhigan freedom fighter.
Character's Thoughts: " I think we're actually friends now!"
Winter made a strong positive impression on Lem's grandfather, the old ex-monk Worg. Lem was jealous at first, and took an immediate dislike to Winter, which was amplified when Winter thoroughly trounced her in their first sparring match. After many more sparring matches, family dinners, and most importantly Winter promising Lem that she'd help look for Lem's long-lost younger sister, the two finally became friends.
Summer Oak, Teacher. () - Red Mage
Character's Thoughts: " Summer's so strange. I can't believe she followed me around until I agreed to become her student. But I can't argue that she doesn't know her stuff.."
Summer Oak was a Hellsguard approximately 20 years Winter's senior. She's a practitioner of the art of Red Magic. Concerned that her art could die out if the Red Mages didn't share their knowledge with the people of Eorzea, Summer came to Ul'dah in hopes of finding a protege. She started watching fights at the coliseum, where Winter and Lem had been sparring. She saw Winter was competent at fighting, and heard that she had a similar name, and her mind was set. While Winter wasn't interested at first, Summer challenged her to a sparring match to convince her to study Red Magic. Led Winter into battle in Gyr Albania, died at the RHalgr's Reach massacre
Worg Bloodmoon, the old man. () - Former Fist of Rhalgr
Character's Thoughts: " Worg's a kind man doing the best he can."
Worg Bloodmoon ran into Winter in Ul'dah when she was still living there as a sellsword. He explained to her his predicament - he was being harassed by a monetarist, but he was just an old feeble man. Unfortunately, he didn't have the money to pay her for protection. Moved by Worg's story, Winter agreed to help him without being paid, and wound up pinning the harasser to the ground in an arm-lock! Appreciating her willingness to help and approving of her use of only as much force as was absolutely necessary, Worg gave Winter his old Fist of Rhalgr circlet as a thank you gift. Worg's granddaughter, Lem, is frequently frustrated with him. He disapproves of her involvement with the resistance. He feels she's too quick to violence. She believes he's become far too much of a doormat in his old age and is resentful that he refuses to teach her any monk techniques at all. When Winter visits, she frequently finds herself caught in the middle.
Guolhaemr, the villainous dad. (
) - Notorious Pirate of the Serpent Reavers
Character's Thoughts: " I don't know what Pa's up to nowadays. I'm pretty sure I don't want to know."
The guy who lead his crew into serving Leviathan and demanded all his crew members get the blue face tattoos. Winter ran away from him a long time ago and has no desire to catch back up.


PLAYER CHARACTERS
Kincaid Vannekin, husband. () - Hyur-raised Mi'qote mage.
Character's Thoughts: " Kincaid's the best thing that ever happened to me!"
Kincaid and Winter have been together for over a decade, since their days working as sellswords in Ul'dah. They know each other extremely well and have a high level of trust between them.
Domo Kha, retainer/butler. ($) - Cultured Xaela.
Character's Thoughts: " He's a bit of a strange guy, but he does make my life easier!"
Domo is from the Kha tribe - a Xaela tribe that places a high value on learning about other cultures and traditions. Winter came through the Steppe looking to assist in the Doman revolution along with a couple of other Sky Knights, and Domo attached himself to her when he realized she was a foreigner he could speak with in great detail thanks to Winter's gift of the Echo.
J'umhinn Hahn, favored employer. ($) - Trade Company Heiress.
Character's Thoughts: "She pays well and is very straightforward and clear. I'll take jobs from her anytime!"
During Winter's Ul'dahn bodyguard-for-hire days, J'umhinn frequently employed protectors for her company's trade caravans.

RUMORS

N P C

Some of these rumors are untrue, speculation, or are greatly exaggerated.

◢ Common Rumors - Easily overheard. Use these freely!
"The blue tattoo on her face - I've heard tell that's a sign of the Serpent Reavers."
"Before she changed her name to Winter Willow, she kept refusing to give her last name. Maybe it was too complicated and people kept butchering it?"
◢ Uncommon Rumors - A little more difficult to hear. Use sparingly or ask first!
"She paid a merchant to smuggle her to Ul'dah in a cart. She's running away from something. "
◢ Rare Rumors - Very rarely overheard. Please ask before using!
"She's Guolhaemr's daughter... and he's one nasty pirate. I'd be careful if I were you. "

P C

Feel free to add your own rumors to this section.

◢ Player Character Rumors - Some of these are more rare than others!
"Rumor." — Rumormonger.

ಌ OOC NOTES ಌ

OOC INFORMATION

Player Note
Older RPer, coming from WoW. I have limited gaming time and a good feel for what kinds of stories I am and am not interested in. Playing alongside IRL husband - we created our two characters as a couple-from-backstory.
Personal RP Limits
I will play 'Comedic RP, Serious RP, dark RP, slice of life. I like a good mix of moods and themes.
I won't play Sex & romance, character death, RP that completely disregards lore.
Disclaimer
I reserve the right to choose not to RP with anyone I don't want to for any reason. I am disinterested in romance RP on any of my characters - Winter or any future characters I bring to RP (with maybe some exception for VERY long-time friends). I've had OOC issues in the past where a RP partner got too posessive and I just don't feel like dealing with it again.


CHARACTER TIDBITS

Potential Plot Hooks
Working on this.
are you an ex-reaver? Let's start a support group!
Red mages - you might know Winter's teacher and be introduced to Winter through her..
Character Lore Adherence
Lore is the base we're all building from. Any time your character blatantly contradicts lore, you're asking someone else to accept your changes to their character's environment that they'd been building from long before meeting you. If you have to fudge something a little to make a great story, that's understandable - just make it fun for others to play off. Don't disregard lore just to disregard lore: that is rude to the other RPers you're playing with.


If I mess up/misremember/misunderstand something lore-related, I am VERY happy to be corrected... as long as it’s in a reasonably dignified way. Either whisper me OOC or correct-and-move-on IC. Don’t dwell on it IC to the point of making my character a target or otherwise be a jerk. I’ll also either do this with other players or just gloss over it. Lore is wonderful, but RP also isn’t worth getting toxic over.



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ಌ INFORMATION ಌ
Name - Winter Willow
Race - Sea Wolf Roegadyn
Age - 26
Name Day - 15th Sun of the 6th Astral Moon (11/14)
Deity - Oschon
Personality Type -ENFP

Alias: Wintwyda Guolhaemrwyn
Citizenship: Ul'dah
Occupation: Former Sellsword, Current Sky Knight
Hair color: Blue
Eye color: Gold
Complexion: Soft-featured, blue
Piercings: Ears only
Marks or tattoos: Blue face tattoo.
Alignment: Neutral Good
Key Items: Red Mage's foil, focus, and soulstone
Favorite Food: Rare Steak
Favorite Drink: Sparkling CIder
Favorite Color: Green
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