Laris Valerius Corvis
- Name: Laris Valerius Corvis
- Player: Curtana
- Race: Shadar kai
- Nationality: Thantopolitan
- Gender: Male
- Age: 37
- Hair: Black
- Skin: Medium grey
- Height: 5'11"
- Weight: 170 lbs
Laris is a shadar kai aristocrat, close to six feet tall, with a trim but muscular build from years of military training and little in the way of overindulgence. He wears his black hair cut neatly short in a Thantopolitan military style. His eyes are a pale silver shade that stands out against his steel grey skin. His features are refined and handsome, though somewhat strained from the stresses of his position. He typically dresses simply and conservatively, in fashions appropriate to the upper class of Thantopolitan society (at least, the fashions of a decade or more ago) but with his wealth shown through the high quality of the fabrics rather than through excessive ornamentation - apart for on special occasions. He often wears armor, which has clearly seen many battles. He has a number of scars on his body due to injuries incurred in combat - a cut across his right forearm from blocking a blade, an arrow wound to the left thigh, along with many other more superficial injuries. His dragonmark appears as a spiderweb of silver lines that radiate from his upper left chest up to his shoulder. He normally appears serious or even dour, rarely smiling or showing much emotion.
Laris Valerius Corvis is the son of Lucius Ferox Corvis, a shadar kai nobleman of a prominent family in Thantopolis, and his wife Avidia Metella. The Corvis family is an ancient and powerful one, and claims to be descended from the Raven Queen. Laris is their middle child, having a much older sister, Meria Licina, and a younger brother, Aulus Taurinus. His mother Avidia took her own life when he was five, not long after his brother was born. This act was looked on as a sign of weakness and cowardice by the senior members of the family, and she was therefore not selected to be brought back as undead. For a time Laris and Aulus were raised by their sister Meria, as well as various servants, in a villa outside the city, allowing their father Lucius sufficient time to conduct his political affairs in Thantopolis. His father's sporadic visits home were always occasions for excitement and, although he was strict, Lucius was also affectionate with his sons, and Laris had great respect for him.
When Laris was eight, his father was selected to be made into a vampire, as a step towards his eventual appointment to the Senate (which happened the following year). This was a great honour and it was explained to Laris accordingly: it would be an important achievement for their family, and a goal that his father had long worked to reach. Nevertheless, it was a greatly traumatic experience for him, one that he learned to cope with by embracing it as a goal of his own one day. At around the same time, his sister Meria was to be married into a prominent family, the Nauta family. Laris understood at some level that these things were connected, but did not have enough knowledge at the time to fully grasp the political nuances of the situation.
The upshot of all of this was that someone would be needed to care for the boys, as Meria would no longer be available, and Lucius would not be able to do so himself, for obvious reasons. In order to ensure their education and care, he purchased a personal slave for each of the boys, who would thereafter be responsible for them. Laris' slave was a gnome named Calkas, who had been captured into slavery at a young age and trained to be a tutor for children of the nobility.
At first, Laris was resentful of the changes to his family and life, and was disobedient and unruly as a result. Calkas eventually found ways to rein in the boy, however, using ropes to restrain him and instructing him in methods of meditation to help him control his emotions. In time Laris grew to accept and welcome this treatment, even depending on it. Meanwhile he was also receiving training in military leadership and intellectual pursuits. His brother Aulus, in contrast, was designated to enter the priesthood of the Raven Queen, and their paths largely diverged from that point onwards.
Laris' dragonmark manifested when he was thirteen, and appears as a silvery spiderweb-like network of lines spreading from his heart to his left shoulder. This of course made him more useful to his family, and more valuable as a potential ally, and they soon negotiated a union for him with Dianthea Lucilla Pertinax, the young daughter of another powerful family. Dianthea was at the time very young, ten years his junior, so the marriage was not to take place immediately, but only once both were grown. Laris met her a few times when they were young but was largely indifferent to her, as a teenager might be of any small child. He has not actually seen her in person since she was perhaps nine years old (she would now be 27).
When Laris was in his late teens he was made a centurion in his family's legion. He spent the next several years engaged in military action in [wherever would make sense], serving competently and effectively, generally achieving his family's strategic goals and, over time, distinguishing himself as a reliable and disciplined leader. He was considered to have a promising career ahead of him, and there was even talk that he could one day be a Senator like his father.
During his years in the military, he became close friends with a vryloka military necromancer of similar background and status to his own, named Rufus Metilius Auspex. After some time, the two also became lovers, although both understood that such a relationship would necessarily be kept relatively quiet, and of limited duration. Throughout his military service, he wrote dutifully to his family, and to Dianthea. Of course he also took Calkas with him on his travels, and relied on him for advice and support. The gnomish slave remains his most trusted companion.
After the destruction of Bael Turath, Laris was dispatched to Nēšu Abamātu in order to help secure it and look after his family's interests there. He expected at the time that the appointment would only be for a short while, perhaps a year at most. Instead he has become the de facto governor of the place, working to defend and rebuilt the city, all the while waiting to be recalled to Thantopolis. Having now been there the better part of ten years, he wonders whether this is all part of some elaborate test, or whether perhaps certain factions have some ulterior reasons for keeping him in this backwater trading port, far from home.
To Dianthea Lucilla, greetings from your intended.
I hope that you are well. In my most recent letter I informed you that I expected to be returning home in the near future. Unfortunately the situation in Nēšu Abamātu has changed, such that my return will now be delayed. While the Turathi heir has returned to lay claim to her family's lands, she is as yet very young, and requires guidance until she is more prepared to assume her role. To depart now would be to place this domain into untested hands, and considerable chaos and trade disruption could result. As such, I have agreed to remain in my position for another year or perhaps longer. I hope that this will not cause you undue inconvenience, or at least less inconvenience than it causes me.
I remain faithfully yours, Laris Valerius.
To Dianthea Lucilla, greetings from your intended.
May this letter find you in good health. There has recently been an unanticipated development. Following the battle with the Maazikai, some of the dead were gathered in order to be raised to the Raven Queen's service. However one of the slain hobgoblins has risen as a revenant, calling himself Harbinger. His purpose here is as yet unclear to me, but upon consultation with the local priestess, Merula, she fell into a trance and spoke of a rider approaching who bears opportunity and death, and of fate swirling like floodwaters at a dam. She said that Harbinger was truly named, and that he carries the Lady's word with him, although he does not yet understand her bidding. I write this to you in hope that you may have some further insight, or understand the meaning of this development. Your advice is appreciated.
As always, Laris Valerius
To Laris Valerius, greetings from your intended.
Blessings of the Raven Queen upon you. I am sorry for the delay in my writing, but I took too long to do so and the contents of your last letter put into motion certain events about which I wished to know the outcome before responding. The appearance of one of the Queen's servants in Nesu Abamatu has proven of significant interest among the clergy here, and that interest is drawing its own attention from the Senate. Your management of Thantopolitan interests in Nesu Abamatu earned your house quite a bit of favor, and they seek to capitalize upon this investment. I'm sure this has been covered in letters from your family, and I feel I am rambling, but I confess to a significant excitement. I hope this comes as a pleasant surprise, but I will be accompanying the additional forces the Senate is sending. These weeks until we sail are an almost unbearable trial, but I look forward to seeing you and all you have accomplished. I hope I do not prove a disappointment after all these years.
With hope and affection, faithfully yours, Dianthea Lucilla
(Obviously written later) P.s. I cannot resist: I am not the only surprise that will be waiting for you on the ships. I know you do not care for surprises, but I believe this one will make you happy.