Resurrectionist in hiding
" As you walk the lonely road your every breath will be as your last. For the hunter shall lay down and sleep upon the lilies. Hence, the dried lands are watered with the blood of sinners and you shall call upon the crow. "
My early life (birth to 25)
I always was obsessed with death and dying. That is why I spent so much time in the family crypt, even as a young child growing up outside of Bristol, England. I felt a closer kinship with the dead than the living. It had a negative effect on my family. My hygiene had suffered as I could not be bothered with the time to bathe. I ate when I had to, but there was no joy in it, merely the inane chatter of my family.
As the years went on my family grew increasingly frustrated with me. I could not understand their issues. I ate little, spoke even less, and made no demands on their time. It also made the servants uncomfortable around me. I learned to listen more in the crypts and the dead began to speak to me. Or I was completely insane, either answer could be correct. My brother and sister were married off and left home. I may as well have been gone. I spent now most of my waking moments in the crypts. I had begun hearing the calls and listening intently to the whispers in the dark. I then took my first fateful steps.
I learned to make the dead walk again, true it was mostly small animals and such but it was something. That was a major defining moment in my life and the one that filled me with the most joy. I enjoyed the months after my first success and pondered ways to improve upon them. It had to end of course. Happiness was not in my future. I was told by my father in that I would other accept the next suitor to come my way and “get out of his house” or there would be consequences. I had noticed more that my parents were now quite disgusted with my nocturnal wanderings.
I was not entirely cooperative with my father’s plans. He tried a number of suitors, drawn mostly to the family’s money and my father’s exaggerations about my charms. Imagine the surprise on the men’s faces when they saw me. It goes without saying that I was able to remain unattached to such vapid company. As it happened death saved me from a fate worse than itself (that being marriage and children), I would not be a brood mare bought and sold! Father and mother both died under “mysterious” circumstances.
It was fortune that I was alone in my home, unhindered by pestering parents or noisome suitors. The family fortune passed to my brother which bothered me not at all. I could not fathom what was to come. It seems my brother blamed me for the death, it being under “unusual” conditions according to the coroner. I found the coroner to be a hack, my parents died of fright (in hindsight, yes it could be my “fault” for animating the macabre zoo that they saw that moonlit night in our gardens) It was enough of a mystery to allow my brother to claim that somehow, some way I was responsible.
He immediately set out to find a “suitable husband” for me, which meant that the first man to offer was getting me. As it happened, my uncle sent for me.
From home to Malifaux (25-death?)
At first I was horrified to be forced from my home (and my work). but later I would be most pleased to discover that the whispers in the night were in fact my uncles gentle prodding. He had moved to Malifaux after a quarrel with my father and they had not spoken since, well..not as two living men at any rate. When I arrived at the station through the breech, there was a carriage awaiting me.
The house was in terrible shape and my uncle looked like he was far older with stark white hair and bent knee. He was ready to teach me the rest of what I should know and my lessons went swiftly. I was a good student and eager for ever more. His wealth was not great but neither of us were particularly concerned about “comforts” or anything else that slowed our research. I became his chief assistant and agent in matters of “business”. This meant I was loaned out to others as my relative youth and good physical condition made me an asset to those prowling the quarantine zone.
I had learned to be more ruthless (though in truth I was just not concerned, far from working with malice, more neglectful really) and several crews put me to good use. It was unfortunate that my uncle lent me to a particular villain who managed to draw blood and ire from the wrong sort of folk (which meant brave “heroes” who would fight back) The idiot not only botched our little “ransom-trap” scheme, but managed to get himself and most of his crew killed. The rest of us were taken alive. We would not remain that way.
Unbeknownst to me, my uncle had run ins with this particular band before, and thou they had decided to spare me ( I was kind to their families while we held them captive) their leader changed his mind when they found out who I was. “tough luck, Limey b***h” were the last words I heard before he placed the barrel of his pistol to my sternum and pulled the trigger.
Death? and beyond.
I awoke to the sick smell of burnt flesh and wood smoke. I felt my chest immediately and there was a bullet wound but I was breathing and I felt my heart flutter. I rose slowly and painfully. I was in the cold, wet grass behind what was once my uncle’s home (and mine) he was nowhere to be found. The Guild had left their calling card and my uncle was certainly wanted (a 300 scrip bounty on his head) and they finally discovered who he was and took action (I suspect that somehow the delivery of my corpse to him had tipped the authorities or that my killers did) either way I am now alone, homeless, and poor. I gathered what I could, dyed my hair, and set off into town. I needed to find friends fast or I would be easy meat for another table.