And as I think me and Daril have reached a semi-consensus here, I'll finally post up my character!Name:
Dahlia tends to dress very conservatively, often baring very little flesh around strangers. She has no preferences when it comes to style, wearing whatever she deems suitable for any given situation and placing comfort and practicality above all else. Much to the disdain of certain traditionalist neighbors, this includes clothing better suited for men. However, she is just as likely to wear a dress during the hotter summer days, and is required to wear one when working at the village tavern as a part-time barmaid.
Her armor bears no ornamentation, is strictly functional, and strikes a careful balance between defense and maneuverability. Even her shield is a blank slate, though it bears crisscrossing scars from many different blades and claws. Dahlia is a hardy woman out of necessity, and she takes no pains to hide it.
Yet there is still a softness in her eyes around children, and a mischievous twinkle when listening in on the exciting tales of various travelers as they blow through the village in search of far off lands, hidden fortunes, or vengeance against those who have wronged them. Adventure is both a passion and a dream to her, and it is not entirely uncommon to see her shirking her duties and setting down with patrons to listen in on their conversations, and most are all-too-happy to have the attention of such a pretty young lady.History:
Dahlia hails from a rather typical settlement in the Borderlands, a place of rolling green plains, bubbling springs, and dark woodlands full of foreboding and superstition. The climate is temperate for the greater part of the year, but it is not the weather that worries most of its inhabitants. It is nestled snugly in a sort of Deadzone between trading routes and the commonly traveled paths, causing some to pass it by entirely; all but the more unscrupulous wanderers, who prey on the outlying farms from time to time. And when raiders are not skulking about, far more monstrous things lurk just out of sight, biding their time and contenting themselves with the theft of much-needed livestock during the night.
But where caravans seem content to ignore it, those with brave hearts and curious souls often find themselves drawn to its quaint inns and rural inhabitants. It is both a waypoint and a landmark for many, allowing its people to keep abreast of current events and transforming its bars into miniature rumor-mills where all sorts of stories and information are traded as easily as any physical goods.
Her mother died in childbirth, though that is not such an uncommon thing in smaller settlements. There are never enough doctors to go around when there is truly a need for them. But the people persist, as they always have. Preserverance was a trait her father hammered into her from an early age, and the family farm was a testament to his stubborn will. The Valentines were supposedly tricked into purchasing the land generations ago, a plot where the soil yielded very little and the sun shone just harshly enough to make living more difficult than it ought to be. But that fierce pride had been passed down from grandfather to father to son, and it was in turn passed to Dahlia.
Living out on a farm in the Borderlands, away from the protective fortifications of the town proper, one has to learn to defend themselves regardless of gender or social standing. There was no trained swordsman or professional school so far out in the middle of nowhere, so the families did their best to improvise and pass on what knowledge they had to their kin. Her prowess with a sword and a shield have been enough to ensure her safety from the common bandit or slavering beast preying upon her precious livestock, and every now and again she surprises herself with a well-timed shot from a hand-me-down crossbow. In sheer technical skill she would be easily outclassed by any properly trained soldier, but survival is in her blood and improvisation comes as naturally to her as breathing.
These days she does her best to balance three separate lives: Dahlia the farmer, who toils amongst parched soil long before the sun has peeked up over the far horizon; Dahlia the barmaid, who offers a cheerful grin to regulars and a curious, all-too-excited glance towards strangers while fretting about all the frills and cleavage her outfit puts on display; and lastly, Dahlia the Town Watchwoman, who stalks past the outer walls with torch in hand when the moon is high and weathers the leers and criticism from the men on her patrol.