The Silver Talon

Name: Savatay

Race: Elf

Date of publication: Seventh Season of the New Era

Age at time of publication: 30-35 summers

Occupation: Soldier with the Sartanean Military

Family: Mother, Yrel; Father, Gaelea; Older brother, Krysha

Savatay is the second generation of his family to be born within the borders of Farahdin. His grandfather migrated from the lands of Alderdor nearly one thousand years prior and settled in the newly founded elvish settlement of Landshold—abandoned since the fall of the Ryù—where he met Savatay’s grandmother. Together, they raised Savatay’s father, Gaelea, imparting the tradition of military service to his lineage. The elvish nation was beginning to grow more established in Farahdin at this time, flourishing under the reign of Navarro and Faleor. Gaelea, following his father’s footsteps, joined the Sartanean military hoping one day to become a rider. However, as no dragon egg ever hatched for him, he continued to serve as a swordsman in the military, training in the capital of Sartanae but returning to his family after accepting an assignment that stationed him near Landshold.

Soon after Savatay was born, Gealea was called back to Sartanae to fight in the great unnamed war—the same war in which Orthel’s brother was killed. He survived, however, and Savatay and his family went to Sartanae to greet him as he returned with the survivors of his regiment. Savatay still remembers the look on his father’s face: “He was haggard, as if he had aged one hundred summers in the span of only a few years. Though I was only five, the fire in my father’s eyes pierced me even to my very core. He never spoke about his experience in battle, though. He seemed to withdraw into himself. And to compound whatever depression he might be enduring, not a fortnight later, my grandfather was ambushed outside Landshold. Several humans—presumably brigands—noticed the golden necklace he always wore. Though my grandfather had the strength of the elves within him, he carried no sword since giving his blade to my father. With only a dagger, he maimed three of the humans, but the others with cudgels, maces, and swords were able to overwhelm him.”

Savatay continued to tell how his father (Gealea) blamed himself for taking his own father’s blade, leaving him weaponless. Savatay’s grandfather managed to survive the attack, but his strength steadily failed him. On his deathbed, Savatay’s grandfather pointed to the young elf, whose seventh naming day had just passed. Gealea noticed his father’s gesture and immediately handed the sword to Savatay. “My grandfather,” Savatay went on, “explained the symbol etched into the scabbard: duty. With his command ever present in my mind, I live for my duty and will never abandon it, no matter what the cost.”

When Savatay was asked why his grandfather wanted him to have the sword as opposed to Savatay’s older brother, a small smile came to the elf’s lips. “Apparently my grandfather knew of my fondness for whittling my own swords out of branches and prodding the other elflings into duels. My brother was more of the intellectual type, always pouring over his books and scrolls. I was the fighter.”

His claim has certainly been substantiated: not long after receiving his grandfather’s sword as a gift, he requested to join the Landshold Swordsman Guild at the age of ten. Though he was the youngest member, he still managed to out-spar elves who were twice his age. He soon exceeded the rest of his classmates, and his father enrolled him in a traveling swordsmanship school which occupied Savatay’s time until he was old enough to join the military. As he traveled across Farahdin, Savatay recalls how Contemno’s reign put ever increasing restrictions on the elves’ ability to travel openly. At the age of fifteen, he and another classmate were forced to confront a soldier of the King’s Men who accosted them just outside of an elvish city. The other elves had already passed through the Illusion Gateway, but Savatay and Urie were moments behind. The King’s Man decided to test his blade against the elves, and Savatay—while still a youngster even according to human standards—shed his first blood with his grandfather’s sword.

 

“It was something that had to be done,” Savatay explained. “I do not relish bloodshed, but when my life is threatened, or the life of my companions, I will do what I must. I will do my duty.”

A month after the incident, the instructor of Savatay’s swordsmanship school suggested he go to Sartanae, the capital, and join the military. Though Sartanae’s governor—and general of the army based there—did not usually accept recruits below the age of twenty summers, Savatay’s instructor assured him that he would make an exception. Savatay followed his instructor’s advice and, along with his family, moved to Sartanae where he joined the army as a swordsman.

And so, Savatay followed in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps as a swordsman. While in the army, he befriended Orthel and finally joined Arius and Guardus in their mission to defeat Contemno. Read on to discover how Savatay always puts duty first, second to all else.

    

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