For my final character profile, I’d like to introduce you to the man I know at least a few of you have been waiting for. Our hero, Tavis.
I must confess that I love Tavis. I’ve loved him since the moment I thought of him. I’ve always had a very clear picture of him. Dark hair, brilliant green eyes. And tall. Tavis is 6’4″ of delicious, well-muscled, down to earth sweetness.
Sadly, I’ve only ever found one picture that was remotely right. So of course, I’m going to share it with you. Just imagine the hair being almost to his shoulders.
Tavis was born on a farm in a little-visited part of the Rianzire Empire. It was not a happy household he was born into, but rather one filled with strife. His mother, Lydia, and his father, Nevon, were constantly at odds, though he didn’t understand the reason.
As he grew up, Tavis came to understand his mother was special. It wasn’t the strange symbols that ringed her hairline, or how beautiful she was. It wasn’t even because she could read, a skill she taught him by candle light. Lydia was special because she could do magic, and so far as Tavis could tell, his father could only drink and complain.
He didn’t understand why she’d only show him magic when Nevon had passed out for the night, or why she didn’t use it for everything. What confused him most though was that she never helped him when he tried to replicate what she’d done. He was sure he could do the same things, but Lydia never aided his faltering efforts.
When Tavis was eight, Nevon sent him to work their fields. Tavis didn’t think that much of it, knowing other children helped out, but the arguments between his parents got worse. They never fought in front of him, but he knew they were fighting and he thought it was about him.
A year later, he returned from the field to find Lydia gone. Nevon, almost to drunk to stand, blamed Tavis. From that day on, Nevon was never sober, nor capable of work. Running the farm fell to Tavis alone. It was either that or starve, so he did the best he could.
In the evenings, Tavis tried to teach himself magic, with limited success, and wondered where his mother had gone. He never quite believed Nevon’s repeated assertions that she’d run away because of him, yet in the absence of any alternative explanation, he couldn’t rule it out either. He wondered what he’d done that might have caused her flight.
Nevon’s drinking steadily grew even worse. Tavis was forever having to drag his father home from Shev, the small village they lived near, and make apologies for whatever Nevon had done in the interim. There was never any money for anything, and they were always in debt, mostly because Nevon spent everything on alcohol.
This drinking began to take a toll on Nevon’s health though. He grew sicker with every year until finally, he died. Tavis buried him, despite the usual practice in the empire of burning the dead. There wasn’t any money to build the pyre and Tavis doubted anyone would come to speak well of his father. Even he couldn’t find words of praise.
For a month, Tavis continued to work the farm, trying to decide what to do. With no father to care for, his thoughts increasingly turned to his mother, wondering where she was and if she was all right. At last, he decided he had to find out. He sold the farm, except for his horse, Swift, and left Shev behind.
With little idea of where to find Lydia, he set out for RIanza, in hopes someone at the capital might know how to locate her. That there was an academy of magic there was another draw. He hadn’t yet given up hope of learning to use his magic better, but finding Lydia was his first priority.
When he arrived in Avene, a town on the highway to Rianza, his only thought was to rest for the night. He didn’t expect it to be the beginning of a path that would change everything about his life.