Bones of the Dead Eleven
Artisan of Infuriation
Firm in the belief that one’s best neighbor is his fence, Cyrnoyim’s ancestors built the walls of the greatest elven city in Tellene.
House Dvergdelheinriahos was a noble name; a respected name, and from it hailed a long line of masons, sculptors, and artisans who worked magic as easily as they worked stone, and married the two often. Cryn and his young son were the latest in a line which could trace their works back to the cornerstones of Doulathanorian, the grey elven capital. For his part, he was as inscrutable an artist as he was a man, handsome and unknowable, a puzzle—and supremely proud of it. Cyrnoyim was the pride of his family, and his people. Though his aloofness and sense of superiority toed the lines of tolerability (even for a grey elf), there was no denying that he was destined for greater things –and not above the hard work it would take to make it so.
For even as a child, Cyrn was not shy of the road less travelled. To satisfy the hanging question of his people’s superior stonework versus theirs, he’d journeyed afar to study dwarven stonecraft. Other doulathan hired workers to go down to the rock quarries to barter with the dwarves and rock gnomes, but not he: he would tag along with his, despite how monstrously ugly he found such places. In a few rare instances, he even took business trips to Bet Urala, Basir’s capital city, though the sight of so many humans was even more monstrous. Why would such a proud supremacist subject himself willingly to that which would turn the stomach of any respectable grey elf? Well, though there was no question in his mind that Doulathanorian was the center of the world, he looked around him and saw thousands of years of… sameness. If he was to construct a masterwork so singular, so magnificent that even the city of his forefathers paled in its light, he decided early that he needed to introduce some… irregularity into his life. Or at least the closest doulathan equivalent.
And so in his work and in his home, “measured spontaneity” appeared. Cyrnoyim applied his considerable schooling and intellect to making the somber and mundane interesting. Doulathan society had given him two gifts: a mien of stony-faced impenetrability and a people that considered anything less a sign of poor breeding. Ample material for an artist to work with.
For the sake of finding inspiration in his culture, the artificer made riddles of himself and his world– making mercurial decisions and manipulating others as if only to keep them on their toes – as if only to make them act out. This behavior continued even into marriage; it worked. His feelings were distant even to his well-born wife and growing son, but his worksmanship soared. One could say his family, too, was a thing of artifice.
But only well-made artifices endure the wear of use.
Cyrnoyim’s people games dutifully punished him, when a strange elf claiming to be his “daughter” appeared unannounced in his workshop, one summer day thirty years ago. He was punished further still, when his workshop and most of his life’s work went up flames. Properly scolded, when the damages to life and limb bankrupted him. Properly scalded, when the ensorcelled fires burned extensively his face, arms, torso and abdomen. Not a trace of this so-called “daughter” was found.
These days, disgraced and disfigured, this doulathan artificer is still picking up the pieces, humbled some by years of convalescence and his lost looks. Relearning skills lost to the decades, he remains determined to make his everlasting mark before old age sets in- even if he must gamble some to do it.
Cyrnoyim is a gaunt 5’7,”standing taller than most elves, with a body that is wiry like corded rope yet seems emaciated – unnaturally so – under the soft, embroidered cotton tunics of purple and brown he favors. Once his coat-of-arms, his sharp-featured face is pocked and creased with pale white burn scars which crawl up to his blue eyes and beyond. Little other skin is visible, but what can be seen is of a golden hue, much like his swept hair. A scarf or wrap hides the rest. Usually, the grey elf packs a wide-brimmed hat to beat the sun – and always, he packs a bandolier of esoteric picks, potions, and implements, lest some poor fool take him for an easy mark.