In The Midst of Black Seas
If I start running, I might get lucky.
Weight: 121 lb.
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
’You’re so lucky!’
That phrase, it’s like the constant chorus of my life. Way back from when my mother and I dodged bands of marauders and monsters in the Sands of Illestrium to this very day when I run for my life, I’ve been told how so very, very lucky I am.
Let me tell you about my luck.
It began when I was born and came out a half-elf and a bastard. I guess it was my ‘luck’ that made my mother a member of an accepting human culture instead of my father’s band of elven wildlings. Of course, that didn’t mean it was easy. My mother, a young woman, so naive, so full of dreams where she is with her elven husband and son, had a hard time keeping us fed. It got to the point, around when I was 5, that she had to sell what little we had and join a travelling merchant caravan as servants.
It was in the desert, so far from civilization, that people started seeing me as lucky. Specifically, they saw me as a sort of ‘good luck charm.’ At first, I think, it started as a sort of joke; they apparently got more business after my mother and I joined the group. It was just a way of cheering up a lonely child who had no other worth but his mother’s love.
Then came the sandstorm. We had seen it from afar and prepared for it, as we always did. This time, however, I had mistakenly gotten into a cart without my mother. I was only 8 and so was intensly worried. I was told that the storm would pass soon, though, so I would have to wait. I tried to hold back sobs and nodded. They spoke the truth, I knew. All of this would be over soon.
I didn’t notice the unusual rumbling until the adults started to mutter about it. I panicked and jumped out of the wagon to find my mother. This was a mistake, of course; no sooner had a ran a couple feet did I notice the stampede of ashworms heading our way. Without much thinking, I ran towards a nearby rock jutting out of the sand. With the sand tearing at my skin, I dived under the rock and curled into a ball. Soon several others, who had apparently come out to look for me, joined me under the rock. There we stayed until the storm and the herd had passed, which turned out to be a couple of hours. Covered in sand and blood, we stumbled out into the harsh sunlight.
We were the only survivors. The ashworms, spooked by the sandstorm, tore through the wagons and killed everyone in them. Among the survivors were my mother, another servant, and the caravan leader, a human by the name of Taren. We burned the bodies and prayed for the dead. There was nothing more we could do.
Taren, despite having lost everything, was relieved. He attributed his survival, and the survival of the other two, to me foolishly running into a sandstorm to find my mommy. My luck, then, became very well established.
Though he didn’t have much, if any, wealth left after that disaster, Taren still had his wits as a merchant. The four of us headed to the closest settlement and he immidiately set up shop. He eventually married my mother and the other servant became something of a business partner. I never knew if my mother married him out of convenience or if she genuinely loved him, but it didn’t matter. He was taking away my mother, he wasn’t my father, he always called me lucky, and I didn’t like him. I tolerated him for years, but each day grew harder.
When I was 15, he made the mistake of taking us to the City of Etaynnon. There, I found my chance to escape. They didn’t notice when I disappeared into the busy market streets and when they did it was too late. I had already left their world.
The next couple years of my life were survived day by day. I slept in a new place every night, ate whatever food came to me; any gold I lucked upon (sometimes through less reputable means) was quickly lost, whether through necessary expenses or shameless gambling. That’s not to say I didn’t have good times. I’ve had fine drink, beautiful women, and bloody good fun over the years. Nothing I would consider ‘lucky,’ though.
At some point, and I’ve never been too sure why, I decided to start searching for my father. Maybe I wanted to know more about my roots, maybe I wanted to give some meaning to my life, I don’t know. Whatever the reason, I started looking for a man named Talian where ever I went. Apparently, he was a bit of an adventurer, as well as a bounty hunter. That’s about all I could get. I couldn’t get any sort of location, or even if he was still alive. Still, among all of my debauchery I searched. Came to the point where I was willing to do some dirty deeds for more shady sources. Sometimes, of course, those sort of things wouldn’t turn out the way I wanted them to, like in the case of the Armalli group, and, well, you can guess they generally turned out.
That’s where I sit today. On the run from a group of drug traffickers in a port city I don’t even know the name of with nothing but my wits and my ‘luck’ to help me through. Business as usual, I suppose. ‘At least the Armalli’s have lost your scent, that’s lucky’ some might say. That’s a fair point, I guess. I heard there’s a celebration of some kind on a ship in harbor. Lots of rich people, tons of security; easy way to get lost pretty quickly. I’m sure I’ll find a way on.
I always do.