Prince Tristram Valardin
Audacity, audacity, always audacity!
Description: This tall, muscular man has slightly curly blond hair and an easy smile. His blue eyes glimmer with laughter, as if he is determined to enjoy life no matter what travails it places in his way. A neatly-groomed goatee and moustache frame his mouth. He walks with an unmistakable and likely unconsious swagger to his step. His voice, a pleasant baritone, is often heard with a complimentary, gallant tone when he speaks.
Personality: Vivacious, audacious and occasionally salacious, Tristram cuts a rakish figure wherever he travels. Gallant and daring, always the gentleman, he treats the commonfolk with a great deal of respect--sometimes, in the eyes of his fellow nobles, with entirely *too much* respect.
Background: Prince Tristram, the Prince in Purple, the Champion of Arlenwood, eldest son of Alareon, is a man spurred to heroism and gallantry by the sort of guilt only an older brother can bear. When his brother, Aurelian, was kidnapped, the seven-year-old Tristram was whisked away from the bandit attack by guards before he could bring his wooden sword to bear against the assailants. Despite his protests, he was not allowed on the subsequent expedition that saved Aurelian; and he firmly believed that had he been there, his brother would not have been so sad, so stripped of his childlike sense of adventure.
This would have been bad enough, until his mother as well as his childhood crush Sasha were slain and his sister Malorie abducted when he was 16. His father, whom he would hold in contempt and anger for many years thereafter, had allowed himself to be wheedled by Malorie to go off on a sailing trip with what Tristram would consider inadequate protection. Such grim events left Tristram devastated, but rather than succumb to his grief, he drove himself to the task of finding what happened to Malorie and bringing justice to the murderers and kidnappers who had struck that day. Confiding only in Aurelian in a tearful farewell, he took up sword and bow and rode the Oathlands with but a small retainer, determined to get to the bottom of the assault on his family. His father had to rely on the occasional message from a retainer to know what his son was up to, as Tristram wrote only rarely, and even then only to Aurelian.
Travelling far and wide, he found little evidence of what had happened to Malorie in his pursuit of justice. On his travels, he took to the life of a knight-errant well, not allowing himself to be claimed by the darkness of vengeance, he developed a sense of gallantry and chivalry and a deep love for the commonfolk. Over the years, he earned accolades while dealing firmly but fairly with the marauding bandits he would come across. Years passed as he searched, until he heard of a Chieftain who had come to lead three notorious shav tribes and who Tristram thought might lead him to his mother's killer. Just as Tristram was devising a way to approach him, the chieftain, growing bold, dared to strike at the village of Arlenwood in which Tristram was staying. Riding forth with but a small band of retainers, Tristram ended the chief's ambitions--and those of his sub-chiefs--with three near-impossible arrow shots that passed through trees and branches to slay them in rapid succession, earning the gratitude of the villagers in what came to be known as the Battle of the Three Arrows. Unfortunately for Tristram, the surviving shavs did not lead him any closer to his sister.
When word reached him of the death of his father and the events of the Tragedy, he was shocked; when he heard that his sister had returned, he was amazed. Spurring his horse towards Arx, the Prince-Errant rode hellbent for leather to rejoin the family and lend his aid in its restoration. While chafing somewhat at the barrier that relocating to Arx places on his taste for adventure, he is well aware that Valardin needs as many examples of hope in this time of turmoil as possible, and strives to rise to the challenge.