This will be the third of our main character (MC) reveals, wherein we introduce you to Antonio Silverstaff! Antonio is of mixed heritage, half-elven, half-human. In the society of the Inner Kingdoms, this certainly does not make him unique, as there are many cross-breeds to be found, but it does present some challenges to him and others of his kind. As you may know, the elder races of Cyrradon (humans and elves in particular) can be rather snooty, and in some cases downright hostile, toward these half-breeds whom they consider lesser beings. But more on that later!
Antonio’s family is what I like to call ‘beyond blended.’ He has a best friend who is really more of a brother, a mother who technically isn’t, and a host of siblings with whom he shares no blood relation at all! (I’m picking up on your confusion here, but don’t worry, here’s the backstory!)
Thomas Silverstaff, a hero of the Five, fell in love with an elf named Utheen (ooth-een), whom he called Teena. They were young and unwilling to bend to the pressures of the elven purists, so Utheen and Tom found welcome in the small farming community of Asterhof. They built a small farmstead, and bore a son, Antonio, in the year 2529. Though they both wished for more children, the birth took a toll on Teena, and she could no longer conceive. Tom, ever the altruist with a heart for children, began taking in any young ones in need, his farming and many travels providing a bounty of blessings.
In the midst of an early spring storm, an elven couple were beset by orcs from the woodland hills to the west and fled to Asterhof for safety, knowing the man’s sister, Utheen, lived there. A brief battle ensued, with the villagers beating back the ragged orc band, though in the process the elf woman was injured, and began to labor. A townswoman with a talent for midwifery named Alera Sharpe was summoned, took the couple in, and was able to deliver their baby safely. Unfortunately, the elf woman did not fare well and died several days later. Her husband, named Halvierr (hæl-veer), became enamored of the gentle soul in Alera and entranced by the peaceful community of Asterhof, and chose to stay and be wed to her. Halvierr and Alera were happy for a time, though Alera had one defining difficulty: she heard the voices of the dead nearly without cease. Alera often spent long hours awake, staring into the fire and speaking seemingly to no one, at times even running off into the cold night to do some bidding the voices had convinced her of.
In summer of 2530, Alera bore a son to Halvierr, naming him Derek, and the four lived for some few years in quiet content. Though he tried to keep up relations with his homeland, Halvierr was continually shamed for his choice to wed a human, and for denying his son his birthright. As the years went on, the continued isolation from his homeland, as well as the increasing stress of Alera’s torment, overwhelmed Halvierr. He took his pure-born son and left Asterhof for Eventhallia, never returning. Alera spiraled into madness, ruled day and night by voices only she could hear, even claiming to see the ghosts she spoke with. The only thing, it seemed, that would quiet them were the voices of children. When Derek and his friends would gather to play, her sanity returned. But when the play was over and night fell quiet, the voices returned. After one particular spell in which she awoke from a trance, realizing she had been communing with the spirit world for a period of days, even failing to care for her son to the point he was taking his meals with the Silverstaff family, she begged Tom and Teena to take Derek in for his own safety. They reluctantly agreed.
Several years passed, and the Silverstaff family continued to grow, Tom taking in more and more orphaned children, and always involving Alera in Derek’s upbringing. But despite the respite and joy this brought Alera, the children were an ever-growing bane to Teena, who found the experience wearisome. She’d fallen in love with Tom and wished for children with him, not to open an orphanage and slave morning to midnight each day caring for a passel of misfits. When Tom was unwilling to give up on his passion for the young ones, Utheen left for her homeland. Tom was disconsolate, overburdened with responsibility for the children, his farmstead, and his travels still taking him away often for weeks at a time. But the solution was right within arm’s reach.
In 2537, Tom and Alera were wed, joining their households and finding the union one in
which they perfected each other. Antonio and Derek spent the remaining years of their youth as the oldest children of the household, coming to regard each other as more brothers than cousins in a home full of love and light and laughter, and the many far-fetched stories told by Tom Silverstaff around the fire, stories of a band of heroes known as the Five.
So now you know!
And in the years that followed, Antonio and Derek had many boyhood adventures, with Antonio always the planner, the tactician; and Derek the one who ran in without a care for the plan as long as he ended up with a dead villain and a beautiful princess. Eventually, they took on responsibilities in the family and the village, assisting Tom with managing the crops and harvest, learning from his renowned skill with a sword, and seeing the world through his stories.
As a result of his upbringing, Antonio is very fit, very practicable, and quite handsome, with dark eyes and hair and an earthy manner. But beneath that seemingly collected exterior, it has never stopped eating at him that aside from Asterhof, he didn’t ever feel he knew his place in the world. It still felt to him as if he had one foot in the world of humans, another in the world of elves, and that both feet were trespassing. Asterhof itself had become the tiny world in which he realized he could peacefully exist, and with each passing year it seemed smaller and a little less bright. Though he loves the town and its people, and will always call it home, it doesn’t feel like home. Not exactly; not the way he always thought home should. Fueled by the visions and dreams inspired by his father’s adventures, Antonio knows there is a place for him somewhere, a purpose he will fill perfectly. And someday he plans to find it.
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Thanks for reading! Look for future Feature Friday character reveals soon! We promise only teases and no true spoilers as you get to know better these personalities who have grown to be more family to us than words on a page! We hope that in sharing these backstories with you, your reading and understanding of their stories is richly transformed!
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Jason (and Rose) – Legends of Cyrradon
Author Page: https://amazon.com/author/jasonandrosebishop