These people are the ones Heartland relies on for proprietary in peace, and support in war.
She's soft spoken, wise for her age but some what uneducated. She is unable to read, only understanding numbers for pricing. By no means is she stupid however.
She's no stranger to the shadier end of business, and while she prefers to stay on the up-and-up she's willing to dip into dirtier deals; if she thinks it'll work out for her.
Her name can mean 'Sky Warrior' (Sora translates to Sky and Senshi to Warrior or Soldier), and hails from an exotic land far away. Raised by the peasant class of her lands and oppressed by their leaders and daimyo her clan has perfected a way of fighting back that needs no weapons. They call it Ishi Hakai-Ken or Stone Breaking Fist. By pulling energy from inside themselves users can enhance their own striking power, letting them break a man's ribs through plate armor. While this art didn't over throw tyrants overnight it did lead to a rebellion to end oppression.
Sora, the youngest of five siblings, is a master of her art. Even without her 'ki' energy techniques she is incredibly strong and muscled for a woman of her size, boasting abs of steel and fists of iron. Bandits thinking this unarmed woman was easy prey soon learned she was a weapon that breathed. She travels Heartland now, seeking wisdom, knowledge, challenge and the answer to a question.
"What is there, beyond the reach of my fist?"
The Redwoods have been farming since the founding days of the Kingdom of Heartland. Living just outside of a large town outside of Heartland City, the Redwoods own several acres of land. A sizable portion of it is dedicated to their famous apple orchard. Their apples are sold at the capital and surrounding Cities like Hightower, Earthbound, and Silverblade as well as Forts Victor and Defender.
Avalon is one of many farmers minding the apple trees. She's the niece of the family's patriarch, and has four siblings, twenty five cousins and a series of uncles and aunts on the farm in addition to her parents all living on or around the farm with her in addition to more family who have moved across the land.
Avalon herself is a stubborn young woman, and is usually unwilling to accept help but is loyal to anyone who proves themselves to her and she will help them however she can.
Born to a fisherman, she often followed her father to rivers, creeks and lakes when he went to fish in them. She learned to handle the boats, nets as well as rods and spears. Soon she was joining him, even as he took his boat to the ocean near Port Waker.
She's able to catch several, large salmon and pike from the river to sell for coin. She's cheerful, knowledgeable about fish and how to manage sea and river craft and how to maintain her gear... However otherwise she's known to be a bit of a ditz.
For Katherine the world is full of stories, and upon the stage she tells them.
Born in Heartland City she was amazed early on at age seven when her parents, a pair of minor nobles, brought her to see 'The Ballad of the Seven Knights', a play based on a tale of seven brave knights defending a village during the Terran invasion three hundred years ago. She became smitten, in a childish fashion, with Aludra Hammock who played Christine St. Zeta, second in command of the knights. She had a chance to be brought back stage and the actress, kind soul she was, gave the girl a kind ear and pressed a small, scarred coin into her hand.
"The world has tales, and we tell them", the actress told her. "And with stories we remember history, we remember loss and triumph and we help people smile for another day."
That was when Katherine decided to become an actress. After seven years she landed a part of a squire in 'Where Cless Shall Stand' and, despite a hiccup in an early performance covered by an ad-lib, she pulled it off smoothly. Today she has taken the role of Cless in that same play, as well as that of Heather Skylander in 'Seven Siblings Sacrifice' and Queen Samantha Heartland in 'Where My Heart Sets', but her best known role is the role of the nude warrior Screaming Scully Scant in 'I Am No Lady.'
She herself has become a name well known across Heartland for her flair of the dramatic and willingness to dive into a role; even suggesting that a man actually rape her for a scene in 'Escape From Binds'... Regardless she is well spoken and wants a generation of actors and actresses to follow her.
After an injury her father sustained from a bar fight, Wendy took over the family blacksmith shop. From simple nails and chains to armor and weapons, Wendy can forge nearly anything with metal, a forge, a hammer and an anvil. While she lacks her father's experience she more than makes up for it with natural talent and skill.
In a pinch she can fight, years of working metal having made her strong and hearty, but in truth she would rather hit metal then people. She's hoping to find a handsome, strong man to help run the shop.
Heartland City is a busy place and it's bars are well traveled by soldiers, sailors, merchants, travelers and locals. One such bar and inn, The Wooden Throne, is worked by Anne Blink. A sassy young woman with a tongue and swing in her step. Born and raised in the city she started working at the bar when she turned fourteen and has stayed since the owner, an ex-solider with his two sons and daughter in the military, considers her something of another daughter to himself and even left The Wooden Throne to her in his will, although she doesn't know it. She works hard, five days a week, sometimes six.
She does travel to the odd bed of The Wooden Throne's patron's, however, and might entertain the idea of dating or marrying a local guard or solider.
Zelda is a soft spoken and soft stepping woman. Born to two members of the Goldenport Thieves Guild she was taught the arts of pick-pocketing, safe cracking, break and entry, what's valuable and what's not and more. However in her free time she'd hang around the local church and see the effect of giving as opposed to stealing.
The raid on the thieves guild had her parent's arrested, and she hid out at the Life's Cathedral. The kindly bishop talked with her about finding honest work, but Zelda realized that thieving was the only skills she had.
Then she realized that there were good uses for her talents. She uses them to sneak upon gangs of bandits, robbing them blind and assassinating them. She'd find gangs in cities, rob them blind and leave a trail for the guards to find them. She'd find old tombs and ruins and find treasures within to sell.
Skilled with a short sword and twin daggers, she's quick, nimble and silent. She's sometimes hired out by Heartland's crown to perform a few 'quiet' acts for them. Playful and a bit of a tease, she enjoys a nice ale or man after a job well done. Sometimes both at once.
Her exact origins are unknown as is if Zenith Faith is not her birth name, but she claims to have been a Bishop of the Life Faith in a past life and was given clarity by Teressa, the Goddess of Life. She claims to have been given a goal; that to counter the onslaught of Terra that more life must be made to counter the sacrifices that would come in war. More women must give birth to more men and women to have the numbers to defeat their enemies.
She applied originally as a priestess, but her lack of magic meant that becoming a matron, let alone the Grand Matron was never going to happen. In addition most in the faith found her to be of questionable sanity and told her that making life to throw it away was not the way of Life.
She quit the order and vanished for three years. She reappeared in Port Spearhead where she founded the Temple of Fertility where she offered a new take on worshiping Teressa and the duty of women to give birth. At first she only gained under ten followers, but after a massive battle off the coast between the Heartland Navy and pirates that was likely funded by Terra, spooked many of the locals. More and more women took a place under her as temple maidens.
Men would pay a small fee to enter where he'd have his pick of the women there until the end of the day; even Zenith herself who has since had four sons and two daughters. She is devoted and passionate about her faith, and some call her a borderline zealot.
The Faith of Life has condemned her and her temple as perverting their faith and corrupting their teachings. The Grand Matron has stopped short of calling her a heretic as that would classify Zenith as an enemy of life and target of the paladins. She doesn't think Zenith is evil or making gains for herself...
They think she's just crazy. Even though their records show that before moving to Heartland the Faith of Life did have a Bishop named Zenith Faith...
Since age five her father took her out to hunt. Whether it was for boar, deer, rabbit or fox, he taught her to track down game while avoiding bandits and more dangerous animals like bears and wolves. She was given her crossbow at age thirteen, an old military weapon no longer in service. Once it was repaired and refurbished she took to the woods on her own for the first time. She came back with cuts, bruises, a pair of rabbits and dragging home a 10 point buck. A feast was had that night. Today she can hunt the largest game, including the bears in the woods and buffalo on the plains. She is deadly accurate with her crossbow and has received training with her dagger, just in case.
She sells her hunted meats and their hides in addition to acting as a lookout for bandits and monsters.
Even in the best cities there are those who are poor, down-trodden and subjected. While Heartland does it's best to uplift it's people, it still happens. Nami grew up in the slums of Goldenport before being found by a small guild of thieves. A pickpocket, lock-picker and burglar, she lives by stealing from others. Still she was taught by her mother to have morals and codes; she prefers to steal from those who can afford it, and those that mistreat others.
She often sneaks into bandit camps, looting their coffers and sneaking in and out unseen. She's not above using sex appeal, and has the odd time just sold sex for coin. Or fun.
Vilda was born into her trade; her mother was a baker, her grandfather was a baker, her great grandfather and great grandmother were bakers... Her father, a fisherman, was the odd one out. The family bakery was founded in Whitedawn City by her great, great grandfather and called 'The Frosted Maiden'. In addition to pastries and bread they cook 'smores' a concoction of graham crackers, marshmallows and chocolate. They also serve hot chocolate, mostly in the long winter months in which thick snowfalls are common in the north.
A skilled baker herself, Vilda is looking for a sweet husband to bake with... Even if she knows she'll end up overfeeding him like Stone women have been known to do. Still, she is optimistic and friendly, if at times absent minded.
Cherish could never figure out how or why, but since she was young she could understand the animals around her. She could, in a manner speak to them and receive answers, as if they spoke into her mind. Most animals had an instinctive liking of her and a willingness to do as she directed, at least to a point.
Living in a small village outside of Fort Blaine, she uses her animal friends to track down bandits, lost people, monsters and more to help the local guards. Friendly, soft spoken and shy to other humans, she spends time in a cabin near the woods, surrounded and protected by her many furry friends.
Hailing from a distant, sun baked land, Isis is a skilled belly dancer and entertainer. A talented juggler, fire breather, sword swallower, actress and acrobat she was raised among traveling shows since birth. She travels with her group from city to city, town to town putting on shows, plays and performances. She's cheerful, upbeat and friendly, often the face of the traveling shows and on and off hostess to those who attend.
She is also skilled with a dagger that she keeps on her for self defense, and is a talented swordswoman when called upon. In addition she, and her group's other female members, are known to make a little... extra on the side, night to night.
Places like Heartland offers entertainment of all sorts, music and plays, books and art as well as races and arenas. It is these places that Gladiators earn coin.
Compared to most nations there is far less death filling the sands of the arenas of the major cities, the biggest and most notable being in Goldenport. A gladator who puts on exciting fights or goes onto a large winning streak can become a celebrity in their own right. And Quinn Fairfeild is one of the best the sands have to offer.
Born in the slums of Goldenport she got into quite a few scraps as a kid, often getting her ass kicked. But she would get back up, try to get stronger, and fight again. As she turned sixteen she was scouted by an arena handler and offered a chance to train. She took it.
After debuting and winning her third match she started to climb the ranks in the arena; bit by bit.
The arena rules state that there is a weight limit to the amount of armor and weaponry that can be brought in. As she she wears a helm, gauntlets and shoulder guards, and armored boots, wearing a light, strapless leotard over her form. While this does mean there is occasional… boob slips, to her embarrassment, it does help with her popularity and gives her a distinct look. Sword in hand she fights on the sands, winning more then she loses. Of course she is desired by a number of men, some of whom she may claim and take to her bed...
Hailing from a nomadic, tribal people to the west of Heartland, Kimba grew up with a blade in hand. Daughter of the Chieftain she excelled in the art of the blade and mastered her sword in surprising time. She loves to fight a worthy foe and will not hesitate to offer a challenge; even if she gets over her head.
She has traveled to Heartland to seek stronger foes and harder fights. She wields a lost sword she found in an old tomb, the Purifying Cutter, a sword that coats itself in holy fire on command.
She doesn't seek to kill, maim or even seriously harm her foes; she just wants a good fight, and her hot-headed nature will ensure if she doesn't pick one she'll answer one.
A follower of Rilus, the God of the Beasts, she lives in a cabin outside of a town near Champion City. She makes her living as a hunter, setting traps and stalking prey, selling meats, furs and other parts of her kills. In addition she will pick herbs and other things in the forests as she hunts. She can spend days in the woods, hunting what she wants to bring home. She's a bit of a recluse when not selling her foods, but is not unapproachable.
That said she's also known to be eager to bed men when she comes to down for drinks, enjoying another form of 'the hunt.' She's excellent with bow and spear and has a tendency to reduce any local bandits.
After all, she's all about the hunt...
Yale Anvilcraft is one of the most famous weaponsmiths in the Kingdom. She can forge any weapon, create it to be perfectly balanced, sharp as a razor and strong as the materials allow. She can make them elegant or simple, plain or socketed with gems and fitted with gold. Her weapons are popular with enchanters and she often pays several to imbue her stock with magical effects... at a 'discount.'
The sort of discount that led her husband to divorcing her and taking their daughter with him.
At least she still sees her on the weekends.
Flirtatious and confident in both her looks and craft she can make or fix whatever weapon you need.
Abigail is the daughter of a nobleman and one of father's concubines. While considered a bastard child, he still doted on her, her sister and her half-siblings as a true parent would. She was never a strong child, but found a talent for music and her harp, a gift from her father and his wife when she turned ten. She can be found playing in and near the capital city, playing her harp and letting it's music fill others with joy and happiness.
She sees herself becoming the wife or concubine of a rich man, surrounded by his women and enjoying them all. Some would find this to be an odd want in life, but for a girl who grew up in this way it seems natural.
North of Heartland are mountains and steppes, chilled by frosty winds and covered with snowy plateaus. These mountains are home to the Khijit; a people divided into tribes, blessed with strength born of hardship and battle. Once they raided Heartland, it's people branding them as 'Barbarians', a title that has since stuck, but three hundred years ago the Heartland army blunted their attacks and sent them back, just as the worst blizzard of their history struck. Food became scarce and supplies low as they were unable to hunt or forage. Taking pity, then King Orwell sent a large supply of dried meats, breads, fruits and fish. Humbled by the generosity of ones they assaulted the Khijit Tribes came together and agreed to never attack Heartland in raids again. Trade opened between the peoples as food and goods was traded for hides, ores, gems and arms.
Tanya is the first daughter and second child of the tribe known as Raging Wind. In her youth she learned to hunt, trap and forage for food, the art of the bow and arrow and to fight with axes and shields. As she grew she began to tower over her fellow tribesman, standing above even their largest of men as an adult. As she grew, however, she felt unfulfilled; as if she could do more, be more. Upon her twentieth birthday she decided that what would fulfill her would not be found in the mountains. So she took her shield, her axes and bow and traveled south into Heartland.
She finds work as a mercenary or selling hides and furs. She wanders where she pleases, does as she likes and searches for what will bring her meaning.
Born to a pair of mages in Whitedawn City, Ashley aspired to be a mage herself as a young girl. She studied her parent's books since she was old enough to read, but simply didn't have the spark of spellcraft within her. However a love of books ensued regardless, and she took to old tomes like second nature. Despite her young age she is well versed in the history, philosophies, cultures and traditions of Heartland and it's neighbors. In addition, although she's unable to cast magic, she is very knowledgeable about it. As time wore on she wanted to see this land she had been reading up on, and so at age twenty she left home to travel. As she wandered she penned her own books, about those she had met and things she learned on her travels.
She possesses a dagger in case she's attacked, but is not well versed in combat. She is, however, a fast and agile runner.
Fascinated by his art she asked to study under him. For the next eight years she learned how to twist and forge precious metals and set gems into them. She brought this knowledge back with her as she settled back into Heartland City. Setting up her own shop she made contact with local magicians to enhance her works; some to light up or sparkle, or to have protective and enhancing properties.
She's upbeat and is relaxed, even in less clothing then most Heartlanders would be comfortable with. She's clever and will, at times, play pranks on people. She also loves to eat spicy foods and drinking rum.
Akane hails from a far off exotic land and her name roughly means 'red iron'. She was selected as a concubine for a lord, but despised the fat tyrant and fled. She picked up some skills on her travels before finding her way into Heartland. Once there she took up prostitution as a way of getting income. While not illegal her profession is only tolerated by the rulers of the land, and even then because they're not sure they should ban an exchange between consenting peoples. She sleeps with rich clientele and this can leave her with... interesting bits of information about Heartland and those in it.
She takes both paying men and women, using sex toys, binds, flogs and such on her clients... Or having them used on her.
She also has a blade hidden in her umbrella, 'just in case'.
Working in the White House Brothel, Rinnie came into the place when she turned 16 for work. Her mother was a drunkard who died from drink. Her father was a decent man, but turned to drink himself to cope with the loss of his wife... And often would force himself onto her, drunkenly thinking she was his late wife.
The drink claimed him too.
In the end, poor and in need of work she took the one job she could; prostitution. Her parent's reputation tainted her, leaving the Madame Coxwell as the only one willing to hire her. She enjoys the work, for the most part. At least she's not toiling away in a mine or hauling lumber.
So far she hasn't taken to the drink in the same way her parents did. She has a bit of a fear of what she could do to herself...
The royal family has several servants from guards, cooks, cleaners, gardeners and more. One of their most notable servants is a maid by the name of Rose. Rose has a number of jobs, mostly waiting on ambassadors to Heartland City, overseeing other maids and servants as well as the well being of the royal family.
She is also a spy for the Heartlands.
Because the royal palace is such a sensitive spot for the country politically, economically and militarily the risk of spies is high. Rose and other agents like her are a required counter to these agents of governments who would do harm to their kingdom. For the most part no one but a few select people know she is even protecting the people in the palace against more then dust and unwashed sheets.
In the event she needs to fight she possesses the magical weapon Moon's Shadow. It is often hidden in her sleeve in an enchanted pocket to keep it out of sight until needed. The weapon has an extendable chain attached to the metal, spiked ball. The sphere can be shrouded with dark magic that steals the life force of targets, even on a near miss, and heal the user. She also hides other small knives on her person.
With these tools and a clear mind she endeavors to guard her kingdom in her own way.
With as busy as the Queen of Heartland can be she needs someone to take some of the load off of her. Governing the Heartland Province falls to the Chancellor for the most part, as well as the associated towns, cities and settlements. This makes her invaluable to the Queen, letting her focus more on the bigger picture.
Contessa is close to the royal family and sits in on most of the meetings involving all of the royalty in Heartland. She is considered by some to be an honorary member of the royalty. Unlike most of the royalty, however, she is not proficient with a field of magic or a weapon art making her a bit more vulnerable then them.
She is a stern woman, but not an unreasonable one. She can be somewhat unapproachable to some due to her presence, but is pleasant once you get to know her. She has born one son, but few people know who the father is as she is unmarried.