The Rescue: Beginnings (Part 2: Marcus Unchained)

The following is the background for my character, Marcus Stormlight.

Marcus Stormlight


Marcus was one of several children born into a well-to-do merchant family.  His mother, Retalia, and father, Brormos, were silk weavers.  Their family was not what you would call ‘wealthy’, but they could afford a decent life.  Their family shop, like so many in the city, was located on the first floor of the building the family owned and lived in.  Like his siblings, as soon as he was old enough, Marcus helped out with the family business.  Whether it was taking a turn running a spindle for his mother or father, or helping sort and stack bolts of silk, Marcus cheerfully helped with the family business.

The Stormlight parents never forced their children into working for the family business, but many of their children decided to do so.  Marcus’ eldest brother, Gared, who was 7 years his senior, returned from the Bardic College in Yellowia, and returned to work for the family business negotiating better deals on the raw silk that was the businesses lifeblood.

His older sister, Kayla, 3 years his senior, entered the service of Smofarf as one of his Clerics.  While not directly involved with the business, since she entered the Clerical service, all of Smofarf’s local clergy get a discount on their clothing bought from the Stormlight shop.  This led to an upturn in requests from the clergy of other local faiths for their garb as well.  With the added requests, the Stormlights bought the two adjacent buildings and expanded their shop.

At an early age, Marcus showed signs of Sorcerous power.  As a child, Marcus was easily angered.  Frequently, when angry, sparks would shoot several inches from the ends of Marcus’ fingers.  This led to and incident where upon Marcus, in a foul temper, accidentally set fire to several bolts of expensive silk, an event for which Marcus has always felt guilty.  Growing up, Marcus tried to control his temper, but was not always successful.

Through his parents many friends and contacts, Marcus was introduced to a Sorcerer named Davich Ilkesson (ill-kess-son).  Davich was a retired adventurer who taught fledgling sorcerers to control and harness their power.  It was from Davich that Marcus first learned to cast spells, about Sorcerers and Bloodlines, and met several other fledgling sorcerers who were also under Davich’s tutelage. The lessons were tough but not harsh and they pushed Marcus to his limits.  His favorite times, in those first years of study, were the mock spell-battles between the ‘students’.  Marcus was a quick study and creative, facts that helped him win a few of the spell-battles that were held.  Once, in his 4th year of study with Davich, all of the ‘students’ were taken to LaRendadt, a School that taught Wizards.  One of Davich’s friends was a teacher there and had invited him and his ‘students’ to watch the schools yearly spell-fights.

Most of the students and teachers at LaRendadt treated Marcus and his fellow sorcerers with cold distain and barely concealed disgust.  Marcus and the others watch the spell-battle with awe and even a little admiration.  The spell-battle finished and the winner was crowned.  There was also a feast to celebrate all the participants.  Davich and his students were scorned by the wizards-in-training and most of the staff as well.  They were all excited by the days events and full of themselves.  So much so that Davich gathered up his few students before the feast was done and no one complained.  Davich said his farewells to his friend and left the feast hall.  As they were leaving, Marcus and Davich’s other students were openly taunted by the students from LaRendadt.  As they were about to leave the front gates a group of about 15 people blocked their path.  It turned out to be the Spell-Battle champion and most of the other competitors.  The champion launched into several insults that called into question the character, mating habits, and family history of Davich and his students.  Davich endured the verbal barbs with a look of amused impatient tolerance, but Marcus was beginning to get angry.  Davich saw the sparks Markus was trying to control and hide.  Interrupting the champion in mid-tirade, Davich said, “Fine, if you think you are so much better, then how about a spell-battle to prove it?  You have used many spells today, but, by your own words “I have enough spells in my left foot to best any one of you.’ Well, let’s put that to the test.  I’ll choose one of my students and then the two of you duke it out until one of you can no longer cast.  Are we agreed?”  The champion stood there with his mouth agape unable to respond.  Then a voice called from the back.  “You put your foot in it now, haven’t you Frederick?”  Davich’s friend made his way through the small crowd and stopped, looking at the champion, Frederick.  Frederick made an angry sound in the back of his throat.  “Fine!” he shouted.  “Bring on your best!” he said as he removed his newly acquired cloak, the prize for the champion.         “What are the terms?” Frederick asked with distain.  “Oh, well.  If you win then you get to prove to all of your friends that you were right and Wizards are superior to Sorcerers for all time.  If you loose, how about the winner gets that fancy cloak of yours?”

“Fine.  That cloak is worth more than any of your students or their families can make in a lifetime” Frederick replied.

“Yes, quite.” Davich said with amused sarcasm.  “Now let me see.  None of the older ones, they can use spells you no longer can for the day.  Obviously none of the younger. How about, yes, Marcus you’ll do.”  Davich called Marcus to the front.  “Marcus here has been studying for 4 years now.  He shows promise, but has yet to master casting a fireball.”  Davich said to his friend, all of which was true.  Davich’s friend nodded and said to Marcus, “Frederick does not have many spells stronger than that left.  I know, because I helped him prepare for today, but it is your choice.  You do not have to do this.  There are others here that Davich can choose from…”  Marcus interrupted him.  “Your pardon sir, I am ready.”

Davich mumbled a few words and two stones lifted off of the ground and made a thirty foot circle in the dirt.  Everyone else backed up a respectable distance.  Marcus and Frederick stepped into and faced off in the circle.  When Frederick’s teacher gave the signal, both Frederick and Marcus began casting furiously.  Frederick pulled out a pinch of sulfur and began gesturing wildly.  Marcus saw that Frederick thought he could end this quickly by cooking him on the spot.  Marcus grinned slightly as he finished casting first and pointed two fingers at Frederick.

Frederick finished casting not two seconds later and everyone saw him mouth the final syllables of his spell.  As he did, he tossed the sulfur at Marcus.  Nothing happened.  A look of confusion and then fear washed over Fredericks face followed quickly by anger as Frederick tried to cast another spell.  Again, nothing happened.  Frederick’s teacher looked from Frederick, to Marcus, to Davich.  “Is he..?” he began.  “Yes, he is.” said Davich, cutting his friend off.  Davich entered the circle and walked over to stand ten feet away from Frederick, who was still furiously trying to cast spells.  “It is over young man.  You have lost.”  Frederick tried to cast another spell.  Everyone else stood silent.

“You lost Frederick.” said Davich’s friend.  “The terms of the battle were clear.  You fight until one of you can no longer cast.  Well, you can no longer cast can you?”  By this time Frederick had stopped trying to cast spells.  He rested an angry glare on Marcus, then Davich, and finally his teacher.  Then he strode over to where the cloak lay, picked it up angrily and threw it at Marcus.  Marcus caught the cloak.  He felt the silky smoothness of the fabric and looked at the inside of the cloak.  Davich conferred with his friend for a minute then the teacher cast a spell at Frederick and Frederick was able to speak again.  Frederick immediately began spouting taunts about how Marcus’ family would be able to afford a bigger hovel once he sold the cloak and be able to eat more than once a day.  Marcus grinned and tossed the cloak back to Frederick.  That shut Frederick up.

“That one is too big.  I’ll have mother make one that fits me better and is not that garish shade of green.”  Davich’s friend bowed to Marcus and said, “Thank you Master Stormlight.  Please tell your parents that their work is as exquisite as ever. Frederick’s mouth, and the mouth of several others, opened of their own accord.  The Stormlight’s products were well known and respected even here.  With that Davich, Marcus, and the rest of the students left the grounds of LaRendadt.  As they were leaving Davich asked Marcus, “Remarkable, did your sister teach you that?”  Marcus grinned and replied, ‘It was the only way she could stop my brothers and I from fighting.”  They laughed the rest of the way home.

Marcus entered the Bardic College to further his studies. While there he learned of a method by which Sorcerers could begin to match Wizards in their spell diversity.  The closest institution that taught this method of study was in Iott.  Within a few weeks, Marcus was enrolled in an Iottan school of magic.  Like everything else he applied himself whole heartedly to his studies and soon excelled.  He returned to his family, briefly, after completing his studies and helped them with their business.  With his power combined with his own skill at weaving he was able to raise his family’s fortunes to new heights.  Marcus returned to Iott to open another Stormlight Weaving Shop, expanding the reach of the family business.  At times, Marcus would grow restless and he would adventure for a time, leaving the care of his business to his trusted employees.  Always he would return with new stories and skills that would astound and impress his colleagues and his parents, who were now comfortably living in retirement.

When Marcus heard of the Marshal and the tournament, he packed up his things and his retainers and set off immediately, once again leaving the business in the care of his employees.

Marcus enjoys competition and more-so, winning.  He is constantly beset with the feeling that he is not where he was meant to be, and his frequent wanderlust is the result of trying to find his place.


Marcus has dark blond hair and piercing blue eyes, almost unnaturally so.  He is wearing a blue and black silk robe over a white silk shirt and matching silk pants.  His hands are covered by silk gloves and you can see a silk bracelet on one wrist and a finely crafted silk bracer on the other.  From his back hangs a silk cloak of the deepest blue as to be almost black.  Finely crafted silk boots can be seen peaking out from under his robes as he walks

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