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Martel

Martel is the protagonist of Iron Harmonics, a slice of life medieval fantasy that focuses on villagers' everyday life and a small bit of adventures in and around the small remote village of Brillam.

Martel

Martel's name is a Zaartumese word meaning "the brightest star in the night sky", comprised of the words mabright + ar-est + telstar. Though this would be spelled as Maartel in formal Zaartumese, the southern regions of Zaartum where Martel's parents lived use a variant of Zaartumese that shortens double vowels to one, thus Martel being the spelling chosen for her name.   There exists a similar-sounding but unrelated Micletan name Martell, which is pronounced differently with a short "mar" and a "tell" with a stress. Most Micletan villagers address Martel with this pronunciation and often write her name with the incorrect spelling. Martel does not care, but makes it a point to mention that her name is spelled with a single L when introducing herself to someone for the first time or when her name is to be written for documents.

Physical Description

General Physical Condition

Martel is among the most well-built sapien youths in Brillam, significantly bulkier than most others her age. Her skin has many cuts and burns from working in a forge, as well as a skin condition that causes white irregular patches to develop.

Body Features

Martel is a grasslands sapien of the pale-skinned type.   As a blacksmith Martel carries out extremely strenuous workload every working day, which has built for Martel a remarkably bulky body that is physically stronger than even an average adult sapien despite her young age of sixteen. Among the most muscular sapien youths of Brillam, however, Martel ranks low. Martel's skin has received some tan and many burns due to her constant exposure to fire and heat. Martel also has many cuts on her face and arms received from shrapnel flying when she brings down a hammer on heated metal. The heat from the forge has also caused Martel to lose hair on her forearms.   Martel has started developing white irregular patches on her skin around the age of twelve, which has currently spread to her face, left shoulder, abdomen and right leg.

Facial Features

Martel has sharply upturned eyes, with bright blue irises and unusually small pupils. Many describe her gaze as "icy" and "piercing".   There is a prominent scar on Martel's left cheek made by a large shrapnel when she struck a piece of heated metal too hard during the early days of her apprenticeship, leaving a deep lasting gash.   The villagers of Brillam share the opinion that while Martel's face is not particularly good-looking, her confident demeanor greatly supplements her handsomeness, and together with her robust build Martel is considered to be among the fairly attractive youths in the village.   Like most other sapiens in the village, Martel's face has a rough skin due to the cold air of Mt. Holdo.

Special abilities

A few villagers think that Martel's remarkable eyesight is a special power, possibly some blessing or descended from a special ancestor.   Others are convinced that Martel's ability to shape metal with fire and force is a sort of magic, which Martel finds to be not even worth dismissing.

Apparel & Accessories

Martel is almost always seen wearing a combination of a white sleeveless shirt, dark knee-length pants fastened with a cloth belt, and a pair of black leather shoes. Despite the cold air of Mt. Holdo, Martel prefers her tops with sleeves torn off mostly because she finds it comfortable, and tries to wear them unless she has no washed ones to wear or the weather turns too cold to bear. Martel also often wears her blacksmith's gloves outside the smithy for warmth.

Specialized Equipment

As a blacksmith, Martel dons a thick half-sleeved shirt and a blacksmith's leather apron on top of her attire for protection against the fire and flying metal shards, and leather gloves.

Mental characteristics

Education

Martel has received basic education for general knowledge and thinking skills at the village schoolhouse. Johanna, Martel's mother, has taught Martel to read and write. In addition, Martel has started learning logistics and accounting from Johanna to better prepare to be a blacksmith of her own shop.

Employment

Martel_working.jpg

by RN

Martel is an apprentice blacksmith being trained by the terran forgemaster Manius. Martel usually aids her master in forging various tools such as hammers and axes. By herself, Martel takes care of making small items such as utensils, nails and stakes, bells, and sometimes decorations. When she is less occupied, Martel takes it upon herself to improve her skills and train herself to be more independent, forging tools that she would normally have to craft together with Manius and try out new techniques.   Physically fit and showing promises in handiwork skills, Martel was eyed by many craftspersons of Brillam since she was very small, and as soon as she reached the age of ten and was expected to start looking for a profession to be an apprentice of, she was invited by the carpentors, weavers, masons and even toymakers of the village to try her hands at their professions. Martel liked all sorts of crafting, but felt that none of the crafts truly resonated with her. She then approached Manius who did not invite her because he was not particularly interested in taking an apprentice. Upon watching Manius work and being offered to try hammering a small nail into a foil, Martel expressed great interest in becoming a blacksmith. Manius, expecting Martel's interest to be little more than frivolous excitement over bright fire and loud noises that would die out quickly, gave Martel ten days' time to experience working in his smithy. Those ten days ignited Martel's passion for blacksmithing, and Manius could not help but accept Martel as his apprentice.   Manius notes that while he would not call Martel particularly gifted in terms of how well she forges or how fast she learns, Martel has been slowly but ever steadily progressing towards her certain future as a good blacksmith.

Accomplishments & Achievements

Still an apprentice, Martel has yet to make any notable achievement that makes a large difference to the village. Nonetheless, her steady supply of various metal tools is doubtlessly a meaningful factor to the village.

Intellectual Characteristics

Martel's mind is not one that holds great knowledge, as Martel received limited education and has only ever lived in a tiny remote village, but one that is remarkably sharp. Martel is a careful and diligent thinker, for whom discovering things that others would gloss over and comprehending complex matters that most others stop at understanding what it seems from the surface are something that comes very naturally. Martel always finds new curiosities and doubts, and would go to great lengths to investigate until she is satisfied and her knowledge is broadened or corrected.   Some villagers think Martel is wasting her intellect by working as a blacksmith rather than in a profession of logic. However, Martel and those who know her well agree that Martel's spirit does not lie in delving deep into academics and building a great understanding about the world, and that Martel's mind is better suited for being a schemer than a scholar.

Morality & Philosophy

A firmly good-aligned person who follows the teachings of titans by heart, Martel believes in goodness as a stance of diligently pursuing the challenges of changing things for the better ever so slowly, against the hardships of doing so, and firmly resisting the allure of the quick and easy paths that promise comfort from inaction or immediate and satisfying solutions but ultimately change things for the worse one way or another.   Martel is a simple villager struggling every day to make ends meet, far from a hero who inspires numerous others with grand feats of justice or a saint of absolute altruism. Yet Martel is a significant figure of goodness: she is a sharp observer who is always the first to discover how things could be made better for someone, a diligent thinker whose moral consideration goes far deeper than anyone, and a possessor of an iron will that cannot be shaken by any seduction to turn away from morality. Martel's moral influence is a unique one that has made countless impacts to making things better for her environment.

Personality Characteristics

Motivation

Ever since she held her hammer for the first time, Martel had no more important goal than to be a good blacksmith. She does not dream of being the best ever or in the region, or even a widely renowned blacksmith: she would be content with living a fruitful life as a blacksmith until she can no longer hold a hammer.

Likes & Dislikes

Likes:
  • Martel likes most food that is meaty, spiced and roasted over fire. Her favorite dish is the Brillam delicacy, smoked earth-spider leg sausage.
Dislikes:
  • Though not afraid of heights, Martel dislikes the gut-pulling sensation of falling down, especially when it comes unexpectedly. She would not jump down from any height greater than her own.
  • Being a descendant of folks in warm grasslands, Martel is significantly weak against cold compared to the villagers native to the northern mountainous regions of Micleta.

Virtues & Personality perks

  • Martel has an utterly sturdy and resilient spirit, never giving up on anything unless she finds reasons to.

Personality Quirks

  • When amused, Martel usually chuckles silently. It is not rare for her to burst into loud laughter, however.
  • Martel has a habit of biting her lower lip when she is struggling to hold herself, such as when she is supporting the weight of something heavy, or when she is fighting against pain, sadness or anger.
  • When greatly annoyed, the first signs of Martel starting to be angered is when she gives a single click of her tongue.
  • Martel has a habit of shrugging an eyebrow when she is amused or being dismissive.
  • When Martel's gaze is fixated at something and she licks her lips, it is a clear indication that she is greatly interested in what she can do with that object, person or situation.
  • Martel does not take ale well and gets drunk quickly. When drunk, Martel would chuckle about interesting things and fall asleep.

Hygiene

Martel is as hygienic as any average sapien, keeping her body, hair and mouth clean every day, but anyone meeting her is likely to find her sweaty and covered in ash from working in a forge.

Social

Family Ties

Martel's only family is Johanna, her mother. As Johanna has not been requested for information regarding her former mate, nothing has been recorded about Martel's father. Johanna has confirmed that Martel has no elder siblings.   It appears that Martel has no interest in what kind of person her father was either, remarking that who they were has not even the slightest effect to the life she is living. She does however acknowledge that Johanna sometimes misses them and wonders if she has, or always had, plans about her mate in the future.

Religious Views

Martel sincerey venerates the titans and has built her wordly views on top of their teachings.

Social Aptitude

Martel is an individual who prefers solitude over interacting with others. While she does not actively push against efforts to approach her and in fact makes fine company when she engages in a conversation, she rarely gets close to others without finding something interesting in them. Most youths in the village share the opinion that Martel is great to be around, but difficult to see around, and very difficult to get closer than just "around".   Most villagers who are not well-acquainted with Martel hold the impression that she is an introverted person with a cool demeanor. Anyone who knows Martel or is observant enough is able to tell that Martel is in fact very honest in expressing her feelings, just not as strongly as she feels. Underneath her seemingly cool exterior she houses a passionate heart, the heat of which becomes very prominent when she starts expressing interests in something.

Mannerisms

  • Every single of Martel's movement is visibly driven by significant strength, and Martel makes no efforts to be subtle unless she needs to, though she does not deliberately exaggerate her movements either.
  • Martel does not make much use of hand gestures when expressing herself, a common Zaartumese social trait that seems to have been passed from her mother.

Hobbies & Pets

Martel greatly enjoys stargazing.

Speech

  • Martel is soft-spoken yet has a naturally loud voice, and her voice is high-pitched but has a calm and low tone to it at the same time.
  • Martel, having been taught to speak Micletan first by her Zaartumese mother but interacted with native Micletans afterwards, has a very slight Zaartumese accent to her Micletan.
  • Martel is very informal when speaking to others. The only persons she ever speaks with courtesy are her master blacksmith and her god Velemoth.

Relationships

Martel

Lover (Important)

Towards Hardwin

5

5

Honest


Hardwin

Lover (Vital)

Towards Martel

5

5

Honest


History

Martel and Hardwin have been friends for a few years, since when Hardwin visited Martel's smithy to run errands for the Lion Monarchs, though they knew each other since they were little children as they grew up in the same small village.

Commonalities & Shared Interests

Martel and Hardwin share many hobbies as close friends. They are very often seen at Martel's smithy when Manius is not around, chatting as Hardwin watches Martel work. Outside Martel's working hours, they like to walk around the village and sometimes take a walk outside to beautiful spots around the village.  

Martel_and_Hardwin_stargazing.jpg

by RN

Both Martel and Hardwin also greatly enjoy gazing the famously beautiful night sky of Brillam, usually on the roof of a building in the village but sometimes walking out to clearings close to the village, enjoying the silence and solitude with each other as their only company.   Most of Martel and Hardwin's activities start with Martel discovering something of interest and coming up with ideas, often very unusual, to satisfy her curiosity or desire to act upon it. Hardwin would usually attempt to pursuade her against it, but ends up following and helping Martel.

Shared Secrets

Two sapiens who prefer solitude, Martel and Hardwin know many things that they do not bother, or deliberately refrain from, informing others. Usually such secrets are what Martel discover, although Hardwin also knows many things happening around the village from his affiliation to the Lion Monarchs, either by his own scouting of the area or listening to talks in the Lion's garrison.   Despite their friendship, Hardwin is very careful not to leak any confidential information of the Lions to Martel, which Martel of course respects.

Johanna

Mother (Important)

Towards Martel

3

3

Dishonest


Martel

Child (Trivial)

Towards Johanna

3

3

Honest


History

Martel was born after Johanna arrived at Brillam, and the two have lived together in a small cottage in the second district of the village.

Nicknames & Petnames

Coming from the Zaartumese culture that does not make much use of pet names, Johanna rarely calls Martel anything other than her name or direct descriptions such as "my girl".   Martel sometimes openly addresses Johanna by her name, an unusually informal behavior even for Micletan standards that surprises other villagers and makes Zaartumese onlookers very uncomfortable, though Johanna does not have anything against it.

Relationship Reasoning

Martel and Johanna's relationship is complicated for that of a parent and a child. While the two understand and love each other deeply as family and Johanna has raised Martel with great care and respect, they have not spent enough time enjoying and bonding together. Johanna, fully aware that she is not a warm and tender person and finding it difficult to overcome her nature at the same time as she struggles to make a living for the two of them, decided that the best she can do to avoid raising her child a hurt person is to keep a small emotional distance. Martel understands this and appreciates how much her mother respects her, though she cannot help feeling distant and finding Johanna an incredibly boring person that she would not usually choose over her friends to spend time together with. The other villagers also share the opinion while Johanna has performed one role of a parent incredibly well, namely raising their child a good and strong person, she has failed to play the other role of a parent of being their child's best friend.   Despite this, Martel and Johanna understand and trust each other, having struggled together and helped each other in many ways wherever they can for many years.

Martel

Subject (Important)

Towards Velemoth

5

5

Honest


Velemoth

God (Trivial)

Towards Martel

4

4

Honest


History

Martel was brought to Velemoth a few days after her birth, as is customary for newborns in Brillam, to be acknowledged as a resident of Velemoth's territory. Martel grew up with great respect for Velemoth and his teachings,

Nicknames & Petnames

Velemoth is one of the very few beings to whom Martel speaks with courtesy.   Some keen villagers note that Velemoth also addresses Martel with expressions such as "O Martel" that seem to indicate holding her in higher regard than most other villagers he considers as little beings and usually uses expressions like "little one". Martel also notices this and speculates that Velemoth, being a titan of the earth, finds her skills as a blacksmith┬áto be worthy of recognition.

Wealth & Financial state

Martel's family is among the less wealthy in Brillam, consisting of only herself and her mother Johanna who came to Brillam years ago with nothing much of value, no ties in Brillam to aid her, and a baby to raise.
Current Location
Species
Honorary & Occupational Titles
Some villagers call her "the smithy goblin" because she prefers to be in her smithy and does not mingle well with others.
Year of Birth
6267 R. 16 Years old
Birthplace
Current Residence
Sexuality
Martel feels various degrees of attraction towards sapiens of all genders.
Gender Identity
Martel loosely identifies as strongly female, her identity formed mostly based on her kinship and perceived similarities with her mother. She does not consider her identity to be an important attribute to herself.
Eyes
Bright blue
Hair
Light brown
Skin Tone
Tanned pale
Height
1.6m
Weight
70kg
Aligned Organization
Known Languages
A Zaartumite descendent born in Micleta, Martel is fluent in Micletan and speaks enough Zaartumese to communicate with Zaartumite merchants traveling through Brillam. She only reads and writes Micletan.

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Character Portrait image: by RN

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