Two and a half decades.Race:
Nazan is tall of stature and has an athletic build, honed by years of training and combat. He isn't the largest of orisiri, but he is well-built, with lean whipcord muscle and explosive energy. He has the grey-hued skin and gaunt features of orisiri of Iza. Altogether, his bearing is noble, concealing an acute readiness and predatory drive.Personality:
Nazan had a reputation among his fellows as a taciturn, levelheaded combatant, but possessed of great mirth off the battlefield. Laughter and banter came easily to him. While that is still true today, the fate of his home city-state, Iza, and the trials he endured after its fall have changed his worldview.
Like many orisiri, Nazan is superstitious, looking to signs and portents of the gods for guidance. The fact he ran from the sacrificial altar weighs heavily on his conscience. He wants to believe his induction to the Order is the gods' way of granting him a new lease on life. However, the notion that his actions have angered them nips at his heels. Did running from certain death make him a coward? What would they say if he ever showed his face in Kerious again?
Without a definite answer to these questions, Nazan is content to do as the Order asks. There is still honor left in him, and that honor demands he repay his debt to the Order for saving his life. He's matured since his years as an ambitious young warrior of the Iza, no longer needing to prove his worth to others, save himself.History:
Nazan was raised in Kerious. His household was in service to the city-state of Iza, a prominent orisiri stronghold. Iza combined the martial culture of the orisiri with a political structure reminiscent of the humans or elves. It was a feudal system where land was the measure of wealth, rewarded for service at arms and tended by peasantry. Nazan’s house was of the warrior class, landholders that fought for Iza in wartime and afforded the serfs who tended their lands with protection. As such, Nazan was trained to fight, but also to govern the lands that he would one day inherit.
Iza’s influence grew steadily as Nazan became an adult. It cast a shadow over many smaller states and peoples, a fact that didn’t sit well with several other powerful states. Tensions grew over the years as conflicts became less about subterfuge and cloak-and-dagger machinations, and more about skirmishes and open warfare. To keep Iza in check, the city-states of Nadir and Pesht created a military alliance and marched on their common enemy.
The fighting lasted for years. Campaigns came and gone with the seasons. Iza still stood, yet could not hold out under siege forever. A last-ditch offensive to sally out and defeat the alliance for good ended in defeat. Nazan was captured by warriors from Nadir during the battle. A person of his rank could be ransomed for a decent sum, or sacrificed as a worthy offering to the gods. The Nadir chose the latter.
Sacrifice was not an ignoble death. There was a measure of honor in joining the gods this way. The orisiri of the plain knew this and fought and died for the gods. The orisiri of Kerious knew this too, adopting sacrifice to replace - or often accompany - war. Nazan, however, felt no honor when his name was called and he was led to the altar at Nadir’s square. He felt no pride or elation that he’d see the gods at last. He felt only the twist of fear in his gut and the overwhelming instinct to run. So he did.
His escape should have been impossible, but by some miracle, Nazan wrenched his way free, leaped through the throngs of onlookers and disappeared down the alleyways and into the sewers of Nadir. He crawled through the dirt and waste as guards scattered through the streets, waving torches and shouting directions. Nazan clung to the shadows and bided his time. With the guards in meandering pursuit, he took his chance when a post of the wall was abandoned and leaped to his freedom.
Once clear of the city, Nazan fled to the wilderness. He decided to go north, out of Kerious, across the Maw and find sanctuary in the Aouril Plains. The orisiri there wouldn’t know of his cowardice, but he could prove his skill in a fight. Just maybe, they’d take him in. He spent days eluding Nadir patrols, cloaking himself with mud, sleeping only briefly and living off the land. Finally, Nazan reached the Maw and prepared for the grueling descent down its rocky face.
To his dismay, Nadir riders had caught onto his trail. Caught between the mercy of his captors and the stone jaws of the chasm below, Nazan prepared for his final moments. However, he did not anticipate the arrival of a second set of red-garbed horsemen, and neither did his pursuers, who fell from their horses full of arrows. The riders in red didn’t ask for his thanks, only for his allegiance. Relationships:
Nazan is proficient in Kin-jak
, an orisiri martial art that combines swordplay and grappling maneuvers. He is a skilled rider and huntsman, in the orisiri style of mounted archery. His education taught him of Kerious’ courtly structure and manners, an overview of history and geography and literacy. During his escape from Nadir, Nazan was forced to learn on his feet and adopt surivalist skills, including camouflage, living off the land, making shelters, leaving no trace, etc. Magic:
Nazan shows no sign of attunement to any forms of magic. Magic was always the domain of shamans in Iza and Nazan doesn't aim to understand its nature.Equipment:
Nazan carries the slew of basic gear given to him by the Order: a pack containing a bedroll, flint, tinder, a mess kit, rope and trail rations, among other miscellaneous supplies.
In addition, he dons crimson orisiri armor pilfered from his dead captors, with the emblems of the city-state of Nadir chiselled off. He is armed with a broad shield strapped to his arm and an orisiri bladed club. The weapon resembles a longsword, but its edges are lined with the razor-sharp teeth of the polengo shark.
Nazan also carries small totems on his person: good luck charms and idols of the gods to keep him from harm.