Mercy Mannik Character in Nideon | World Anvil
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Mercy Mannik

The Woman Who Righted the Throne

Born in 661, Mercy Mannik was the daughter of a temple leader in Nefrale. As a temple leader, her father often served as an advisor to King Yoan. Her mother was a healer, and at age 15, Mercy began to apprentice under her. As such, Mercy and her parents were some of the only people who knew the king had a child, a son named Davith. The boy was frequently sick, and the king feared he would not live to be his heir. Furthermore, the Davith's mother had been kidnapped, and Yoan did not want to give his enemies a new target.
At age 19, Mercy and her mother were present in the castle when the Nefalean king was assassinated. Mercy's moher told her to take the four year old boy and run. She would never see her parents again. Mercy took Davith to her home, and when her parents did not return, she assumed they had been killed in the skirmish in the castle. She fled in the night with Yoan's heir, and unbeknownst to her at the time, her house was burned to the ground the next day.
In the years after Yoan's death, a conflict formed between his two brothers. Orlin, the older, and likely the man behind the assassination, claimed the northern half of the kingdom, while Marko, the younger, ruled the south. The two fought relentlessly.
In 684, a widow and her eight-year old son arrived back in the capital, looking for shelter. The woman claimed her husband had recently been killed in one of the battles that had ensued between Orlin and Marko's forces. She also claimed that she could speak with the gods, a gift which could be useful to any willing to house her.
It is not clear where Mercy spent the four years between King Yoan's assassination and resurfacing in her disguise. When she returned to the capital, she utilized a combination of illusion magic and practical techniques, such as donning a kerchief and dying Davith's hair to hide their identities. Orlin was interested in her claim that she could speak to the gods and offered her a place in his household. This was exactly what she wanted.
Davith's infections as a child had made him hard of hearing and delayed his speech. He had also struggled to walk as a child. Mercy used these supposed weaknesses as an advantage. Davith got a job as a castle runner, which allowed him to be witness to everything happening in Orlin's court, but because of his quiet demeanor and his odd gait, most people paid him little attention, writing him off as dumb. In turn, Davith would report back to Mercy. She used his information to pretend the gods had told her court secrets, which always turned out to be correct.
During the next eight years, Mercy would use the secrets Davith collected for her to slowly chip away at political enemies in the court, revealing hidden trysts and other secrets only when it was most advantageous to her position. As she steadily gained Orlin's complete trust, she even convinced him to divorced his wife and disinherit his children.
In the privacy of their chambers, Mercy taught Davith everything she could, from history to healing. Though she had also helped Davith develop his speech, which he would one day need to rule the country, they two also signed to each other. Most of courtiers did not recognize this as a true language, and took it as a further sign that the boy was dumb. One of the few people who did recognize the language was General Erard, who agreed to teach him sword fighting even when Orlin claimed Davith was too stupid to learn.
When Davith was sixteen, he told Mercy he did not feel that he could hide anymore, and she agreed. It was getting incresingly difficult to hide his resemblance to his father. Mercy made his final move. She told Orlin that the gods had promised her that if she married him, he would have a glorious heir. He agreed, and shortly after the wedding, the king died in his sleep. Before the nation could grow suspicious, Mercy revealed Davith--the true heir to the Nefralean throne.
One of the first to swear his allegiance to the new king was General Erard, who claimed the boy had his father's strength of character. But Davith still had to prove himself, especially against his uncle. With Erard and advising him, he led his army into one final battle against Marko, at the end of which Marko surrendered, and Davith was declared king over all Nefrale. Davith also learned that his mother had not been kidnapped, but abandoned Yoan for his brother shortly after Davith was born. At this time, Mercy lived up to her name, convincing the young king that revenge would not unit the country.
Davith pardoned both his mother and his uncle and, at Mercy's suggestion created an advisory council, offering seats on it to both Orlin and Marko's children. This would later become the Council of Races. Davith also married Mercy and made her his queen. Though they were fifteen years apart in age, he said Mercy was the only person he felt close to. Mercy also, having lived much of her life alone but for her charge, expressed similar feelings about him. The two had ten children, all of whom were given their own seat on the advisory council when they were old enough. Determined to prevent the fueds that had led to her parents' death, Mercy raised her children to feel equally responsbile for thw country and to work together in order to rule it. They even worked together to determine who would be Davith's official heir, though the other nine took important positions elsewhere.
Mercy died in 723, three years after Davith, and her son, the king, declared a national day of mourning. Mercy is still considered Nefrale's wisest queen, and to this day, the king of Nefrale traces his lineage back to her.
661 723 62 years old
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Cover image: Nefralean Flag by Molly Marjorie
Character Portrait image: by Artbreeder


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