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Cornelius Varus

"The next one of you maggots who reports drunk to duty or so helps me distribute supplies by stealing them from the warehouse will be thrown over the bloody walls of this castle chained to a god damned cannon ball!"

0 · 252 views · located in Avalon

a character in “The Court of King James: A New Dawn.”, as played by Colonel_Masters

Description

Name: Captain Cornelius Varus
Nickname: "Corny". "Captain Spades", "Mount Varus", "Moody".
Age: 42
Appearance:
Image
Skin tone: mixed
Height: 1.71 meters (5.6 feet)
Build: scared and battered from repeated injury, heavy sun burn, developed muscles; especially the arms.
Other aspects of your appearance: highly scared and a number of teeth are missing from his mouth. The back of his left ear is slightly cut and his nose clearly shows evidence of being broken at some point and being partially mended.
Land of birth: Mando, Clan Varus

Likes: ale, fighting, fortifications, wild boar (for eating), the desert, well built shields, republicanism, his farm, wife and kids, the army, fighting on foot, hunting, Spartan living style when on duty (basic and simple with no unneeded luxuries) long boats and doing a little pirating on the side when he can, eagle, his culture.
Dislikes: nobility, lords, kings (generally dislikes higher authority), laws that annoy him and those who enforce those laws, tax collectors, poorly built shields, the code of chivalry, fighting in a forest, horses (and riding them) , god and his church, the rabble he currently commands, people who do not do what he tells them to do, commanders who were appointed due to their names, when the nobility take all the credit for a victory, undeserved luxuries, bureaucracy, poets.
Fears: forests, swamps, fog, exposed flanks, poison in his food and drinks, official letters.
Skills/Talents: superb and highly experienced soldier, skilled in many weapons, pushing men beyond their limits, leadership by inspiring fear, confidence and battle lust, siege warfare (both defensive and offensive but mostly defensive) defensive tactics, imagination, originality and unpredictability, ship to ship close quarters fighting (not actually very keen on ship to ship fighting by cannon but skilled in boarding and repelling borders) marching long distances, overcoming thrust, hunger and injury, using fire weapons, skilled in convincing local populace of both enemy (if his own culture) and friendly backgrounds to aid him, finding water, desert warfare.
Weaknesses: finds obeying orders difficult, low tolerance for anything he doesn’t like, stubborn, paranoid, overly cruel to weak and insubordinate soldiers, bad swings of temper at slight provocation that can easily end in blood, overly critical, suspicious and negative, a sometimes barley controlled hatred to nobility or a clearly visible contempt, a preference for fighting dirty, only keeps his word to peasantry and generally people of low classes and little hope for self advancement, a sadistic pleasure at killing knights and nobles dishonorably and keeping them alive long enough for them to realize it, doesn’t take prisoners and shows no mercy to enemy troops, only helps those he thinks are worth his time.
Personality: Cornelius in a complicated character; he is of an ever changing mood and mind and likes to ether move about or sit still. He is unpredictably eccentric and sometimes a bit mad but it's exactly those things that make him such a good soldier and leader. He views the peasantry and those classes who work as his people but highly dislikes the nobility and the rich. Cornelius's personality is normally consistent with his likes and dislikes but it changes with his mood, his location, the climate and events in his life. Only his wife understands him at all which is why he married her. Cornelius pursues what he sees as justice and attempts to solve the problems of the lower classes at the expense of the nobility if he can arrange it (normally he doesn’t need to)

History: Cornelius was born in one of Avalon's desert colonies, his culture "the Mando" was once a mighty empire of warriors but fell a thousand years before Avalon was even created. Since the reintroduction of his people to civilization after the conquest and colonization of the lands of his people by Avalon the ranks of Avalon's military especially the colonial army's have been filled by Mando men and many of which become capable officers who in recognition by king Edward were given small amounts of land inside Avalon due to the fall of their homeland but their continued loyal service.
Cornelius was one such man and was born during the occupation After a failed rebellion by the Mando clans in which nearly all Mando men were killed due to their refusal to surrender the governor general of the newly formed colony both impressed and afraid from the Mando display decided to conscript all Mando male children and train them to be soldiers for Avalon in a number of military camps and forts. Cornelius was one such child; he was older then most so he knew a lot about his culture which even strict Avalon training and conditioning could not take away from him. After years of training the Mando troops where scattered among Avalon's colonial armies as front line troops who would take the punishment so that more Avalon men returned home alive. The Mando soldiers took part in many of Avalon's colonial and later home front wars for the next 20 years and made a name for themselves as the desert warriors. Eventually Avalon made its foreign legions which consisted of many conquered peoples but relied heavily on the Mando warriors on which Avalon's generals felt they could depend to lead them. In the disastrous defeats against a coalition of nations attempting to overthrow Avalon's power in the region with help from Luxor the now called Mando legions held the line and with the arrival of reinforcements from Avalon drove the invaders back however the Mando homeland was destroyed and lost to the invaders in the war and most of the Mando soldiers died fighting. Those few who survived the war were drafted into different Avalon armies since they no longer had the numbers to fight independently. Eventually Cornelius was posted to Avalon as captain; he became unpopular with his commanders and was eventually sent to Avalon because his commanders wanted to get rid of him but didn't want to kill him because of the effect it could have on the other Mando soldiers.

Cornelius's own personal history is the history of his people, he was in every war his people where in and led the land for time defense against the overwhelming Luxorian supported invasion, his bravery and defensive strategy saved Avalon's desert colony capital and maybe all the colony but he did not receive the credit for the victory after nobles who ether ran or arrived with the reinforcements took all the credit and began to tax the colonies heavily to recover from the war. Cornelius grew to hate the nobility because he saw no reason why they should be given so many privileges when they did nothing of value to society. His love for the peasants and lower classes was due to their continued aid during the war while local nobles switched sides and his memories of the farm he grew on, these made him embrace the republican ideals but he doesn’t share them because he likes his life as a soldier more then politics. Cornelius was demoted and sent to Avalon's main land due to the displeasure of his commanders, he eventually married a woman from Avalon's Sadow islands who also boasted a long warrior heritage but both chose to live in the Avalon main land. As he was drafted into many different roles Cornelius's wife who was pregnant with their first son grew tired with the repeated moving and both decided to settle in the western reach on the land given to Cornelius as part of his payment since his own homeland was no longer in Avalon's hands.

Since then three healthy boys have been born to Cornelius and his wife along with the first one and even with the distant relationship both love each other deeply. Cornelius nearing the end of his service was posted to ghosts pass as captain of the guard and has served as captain there for the past two years. Cornelius still has one more year of service left but the looming civil war may change that.

Religion: Pagan; Cornelius worships the gods of his culture secretly but pretends to be part of the strict church.
Loyalty: (To the people, to Avalon and doesn’t like ether the king or the duke but he prefers the king due to his popularity with the people)
Relationship status: wife and four boys[/left]

So begins...

Cornelius Varus's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Rivera Talimir Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus

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How Cornelius hated riding, this was no natural way for a man to travel but how was Cornelius supposed to make his patrols on time without one of those ghastly beasts?

Cornelius cursed and kicked the horse harder then he intended thus giving him even more to curse about; the patrol had went down fine and Cornelius was sure he had won at least a few new friends among the locals for teaching that halfwit mayor what was a true soldier and how none of his scum could best Cornelius when he was angry… which was the norm for his mood while in the presents of those over privileged undeserving and greedy slimy devil worshiping cowardly bastards!.

"Come on you lot, put your backs into to it! I have seen bed wetting halfwits ride faster then you lot. What's the matter with you? What do you think this is; a joy ride? You are not supposed to fuck your horses you are supposed to ride the bloody things!"

Cornelius kicked the horse again increasing the riding speed to a frantic pace and cursed as the incompetent mob which was by name his elite guards scrambled to match Cornelius's speed. What happened to the fearsome armies of Avalon? The armies who had utterly beaten his people and survived countless wars in the far away desert continent? What happened to the proud banners of the Mando legion which had broken the soul of Avalon's enemies at the cost of the holy homeland? Why was the most critical fortress in Avalon manned by a bunch of little kids and very old men who were not even capable of drawing a sword properly and would probably run at the first day of battle?

Cornelius tried to calm himself down; at least now he would get professional soldiers and knights instead of the militia he had to deal with for the past two years. However Cornelius suspected that soon he would be reposted and replaced because of the castles new strategic value.

Cornelius saw the looming shape of the castle, even in the darkening sky Cornelius could clearly see and observe every structural weakness of the once mighty fortress; Cornelius wasn't complaining the fort itself was far superior to any of the second rate desert cities he was used to but he noted to himself that a neglected castle in desperate need of overdue repairs could be weaker then a properly built wooden stockade.

As Cornelius approached the gate a man shouted at the party:

"Halt who goes there?"

Cornelius still grumpy from the events of the day did not have time to play that game.

"Open the gate soldier you know who I am"

The soldier hesitated before saying in a weak fearful voice

"I am sorry sir but I have orders to ask password and identification from every party that enters the castle"

Cornelius would have killed the man ten years ago when he was younger but in his old age Cornelius found such violence distasteful.

"I don't care what bloody orders you have, as your superior officer I order you to open these god damned gates or in the name of the seven hells I will rip out your spine and use it to sharpen my swords!"

The soldier was now clearly terrified, he knew as did every man on the fort that Cornelius often fulfilled such savage promises at least partly, the man seemed like all his blood had been drained and that he was about to piss himself.

"Sir… that’s just it emm… there is a new commander sir, sorry sir!"

For Cornelius that was the final straw, so he was going to be replaced? Well Cornelius didn't feel like obeying orders at the moment so instead he threw an axe thus knocking off the soldiers helmet… pity Cornelius wanted to cut off his head; it seemed like old age was indeed caching up with him.

The soldier now completely panicked recovered from the blow and quickly made a few hasty commands and thus the gate finally opened.

Cornelius rode into the castle jumping of the godless beast and then marched into the gate keep. He gripped the soldier by the neck and asked him trying to contain his temper that wanted nothing less then to toss the juvenile off the walls head first.

"Now tell me were might I find this new commander?" Cornelius asked the soldier strengthening the grip.

The soldier could not breathe and so managed to only point towards a well armored and decorated soldier. Cornelius still holding the man looked on the soldier; he was clearly not one of his command and Cornelius easily recognized the Degray emblem on the man's amour and shield. At first Cornelius wondered if the king himself had come but then realized the amour was not the golden royal amour the kings guard wore but the standard palace guard colors. Cornelius spotted the crown princes insignia on the soldiers helm and at last realized what had happened. He tossed the soldier to the floor and marched down the steps towards the royal soldier, Cornelius was angry but he knew he had to keep a hold on his temper while dealing with this lot.

"I see you are a member of the royal guard, am I to presume this new commander is the crown prince?"

The soldier nodded silently, good at least he didn't waste time with pointless talking; maybe Cornelius could even forgive him for being a dog of the nobility later after he drowned him with ale in the tavern.

"Very well then lead me to him and I shall make my formal resignation from command and then he can do whatever the hell he wants to do in his newly acquired puppet house"

The soldier seemed to be deeply offended at the remark but did not return comment, he led Cornelius towards the keep occasionally looking at him and probably wondering how such a rude man ever became an officer.

As Cornelius entered the great hall he remembered how much he hated the nobility… but at least the royalty actually did something worthy of note when they where not trying to assassinate each other or sell their daughters like cattle.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus Character Portrait: Rowan Marwick

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Lelinus rolled his eyes at Rivera before they were informed not only of some many from Pentos, but of two of his own soldiers requesting an audience. As Rivera left, he followed soon after he, approaching the two. It was Cornelius Varus if he recalled correctly, as well as Ser Rowan Marwick. Both were highly commended and he assumed that they had a reason for seeking his presence. He frowned.

"What seems to be the problem?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus Character Portrait: Rowan Marwick

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Cornelius gazed at Rowan, his foul mood was clearly apparent but he knew that Rowan was an excellent warrior and maybe his only true warrior in the entire fort so he soon changed his attitude to his fed up attitude and attempted to keep his tone as calm as he could; she did not deserve his temper.

"You may ask Sir Rowan and before you do so I shall save us both valuable time and answer the question now.

"It appears the crown prince has managed to get his hands on my fortress; I am going to save some time and issue my resignation now instead of being shamefully ordered to do so later. I have been fighting for Avalon for the past lifetime and this is supposed to be my last year in service but if the ignoramuses whom are more commonly known as the general staff appoint me to be the commander of a fort and then remove me from command when war is a possibility I do not see the point in remaining a soldier!"


With that Cornelius stormed into the princes presents he gave a short mocking bow and then held his right arm to his heart symbolizing the individuals devotion, brought his arm downwards in the shape of a fist symbolizing the action of casting down the nobility from power and then raised his left leg and brought it down with force thus symbolizing the fate of the cast down nobles (being crushed under the iron boot of the people). With these actions he completed the republican salute which was relatively unknown by the Avalon nobility but it did give Cornelius a lot of satisfaction.
He had at last expressed his true self; if he could no longer be a warrior he at least wanted to die as a warrior should die; making a stand for what he believed in.

He then took off his colors and tossed them to the prince and said with a fairly respectful and restrained manner considering how pissed off he was.

"Here you go your majesty; my colors and my resignation. The fort is yours as are its "men" and its supplies however I shall not remain in this place; I refuse to be subject to any more dishonors such as these" Cornelius paused before grinning sarcastically and spoke with the same sarcasm:
"By the way I thank command for informing me of this change!"

Cornelius stayed in his place; he had not been dismissed yet so he was still a soldier as had to obey the laws of soldering for a few more moments.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: James Nicholas DeGrey Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Olaf Ironskin Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus Character Portrait: Rowan Marwick

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Castle Cadarn, Ghost's Past

Lelinus could not help but raise an eyebrow at what he could only describe as a temper tantrum, but he had seen worse at Court and so he allowed the man to run out of steam before replying. He smiled slightly at the his actions. No doubt, the man thought himself clever, but Lelinus did not become a spymaster only to miss and all too obvious code.

"I must say that for a Republican, you do an awfully accurate impression of a nobleman whose wine was not honeyed correctly," Lelinus told him shortly, unimpressed, "As for your resignation, I neither accept nor acknowledge it. Whether my brother wishes to acknowledge it or not, Avalon is on the brink of war. I have reports of movements in the shadows and I have no doubt that this fortresses defenses will be fully restored and improved scarcely days before it is besieged. Thus, I will not allow one of Ghost's Past's most valuable officers storm off because his ego was bruised."

He paused for a moment before meeting the Cornelius' gaze with his own, "You have a choice. You may be second-in-command of Ghost's Past's defenses and military operations and I will listen and most likely implement your advice or you may stay in the dungeon's while your soldiers fight and die in Avalon's defense."

He paused for a moment, allowing his words to sink in before continuing, "Oh, and it was not the General Staff that appointed me. I petitioned for this fief in order to pour my men and resources into it, ready its defenses, and prepare for war."

Winnfell Palace, Arva


James looked far older than Olaf remembered. If he could recall correctly, he was but a boy of five and ten summers more interested in jousting and impressing the local womenfolk than owning up to his responsibilities the last time the Northman visited. Now, he noted with a mixture of approval and concern, he looked like he was bearing the weight of the world upon his shoulders.

"There is no need to apologize, My King. A leader is beset by all sides by the concerns and and trials of his people as well as the machinations of the cowardly. It is a difficult sea to traverse, but if you do not, then the whole ship shall fall," Olaf told him solemnly before pausing for a moment.

"I did not visit you solely to pay my respects, King James. I have seen the signs. The birds are flying inland, the people are nervous, and the sword grows light at the touch. I have cast the runes and they fortell war and confusion," Olaf stated bluntly. It was not a practice that was looked upon with favor from either Church or indeed the rest of Avalon, but the art of soothsaying, mysticism, and the casting of runes to be read as omens for the future were still arts openly practiced and embraced by the North, a remnant of the Old Northern Pagan Religion. Nonetheless, Olaf did not believe James would object. Dawnsea and the rest of the North always held an understanding with the DeGreys in regards to their ancestral customs.

"I would not have condemned one of my knight's on the words of a seductress," Olaf stated bluntly, but not unkindly, "Warriors have always held more honor than those within the Royal Court. I would instead look to Luxor or a rival clan."

They both knew which clan he spoke of.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus

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Cornelius was enraged at the prince and the thought of striking him had come to his mind however his knowledge of what would happen to his family and his honor should he do so stopped him from doing anything drastic.

Cornelius looked down at the floor barley containing his rage; for him as a Mando honor was everything; did the prince understand the full extent of the insult he had just made? This was no trivial matter; for a Mando to be relieved from command was one of the greatest dishonors a warrior could suffer because it proved his weakness and inability in the face of a superior commander. However the true and enraging scandal was the knowledge that those who replaced Cornelius where pathetic nobles who had little ability to back their responsibilities or more importantly their privileges. In the past Avalon did not tangle with the Mando because of the importance of the Mando forces in their military however since the Mando were so few and no longer a relevant force in Avalon's military this understanding slowly became obsolete due to the peaceful age thereafter which permitted the nobility despite their general incompetence to grab key positions for the sake of the titles that came with them and the chance to boast victories over the occasional bandit band as if it were a great victory!

The only thing that still made Cornelius obey those he loathed was his oath and his oath was his honor, at least the prince had made the point of reminding him of that. Because of this Cornelius would fight and maybe die but he would not be the prince's dog! He would never again allow any one to cause him shame.

Cornelius gazed at the prince and inspected his combat potential; the prince was fit but not warrior material however Cornelius suspected that the prince like all in the royal family faced countless assassination plots and organized at least a few was a capable sort; meaning he would have been dead by now if he didn't posses at least higher then average intelligence or a lot of dumb luck.

Cornelius did not speak with any emotion and instead adopted the famed Mando tactical gaze which denied all emotions from his mind and left only an unrelenting perception of ones surroundings; Cornelius only felt rage for the prince and he did not want the prince to have the satisfaction of angering an old veteran many young nobles seemed to enjoy.

"I know my oath and my duty but I am not your dog boy"

With that Cornelius left the hall and headed towards the smithy; there was no better way to channel anger then to shape it into a tool of death.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lelinus DeGrey Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus Character Portrait: Rowan Marwick

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Winnfell Palace, Arva

"If you were right and it turned out she was not involved, they would see a king not so easily deceived. Being just is a noble goal, but it's not always about appearances. Quite the opposite. I would be suspicious of the woman whispering in your ear," Olaf reminded him again with a frown before smiling slightly at his objection to what the runes said.

"The Old Magic is never wrong, Your Highness. It is always fulfilled, but not always in the way you expect," Olaf stated in a tone that was neither argumentative nor hostile. Rather, he stated it as an immutable fact, like the sky was blue, nobles were spoiled, or that Rivera wanted to do things with Lelinus that roleplaygateway didn't allow in roleplays anymore. Olaf gave him a stern, but not unkind look.

"Whether you believe me or not, you must be prepared to face conflict when it comes. You cannot prevent its coming by wishing it away, James."

Castle Cadarn, Ghost's Past

"I know my oath and my duty but I am not your dog boy."

Lelinus smiled at him slightly, "I would not want you to be a dog. I want a General."

With that said, Lelinus watched the man leave with a thoughtful expression on his face. He had been given information on Cornelius Varus and he was just as the reports said: proud, anti-nobility, and easy to offend. He would have to gain the man's trust somehow if they were to work together. A few opportunities came to mind, but those would be best left for later. He had to deal with Rivera and her treacherous sister first. He was about to re-enter the Great Hall when he heard someone speak.

"Your Highness, I am Ser Marwick currently assigned to Ghost's Past. It is a pleasure to meet my new commander."

He gave her a small bow of his own. He didn't know much about her, but she seemed like a capable warrior at first glance given the shape of her body and the care given to her equipment, "I have to say that is a pleasant departure from Captain Varus' attitude."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Cornelius Varus Character Portrait: Rowan Marwick

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Cornelius was shaken, this did not happen often but today was a day in which he could show his humane side without fearing dishonor indeed to not react to such a sight would be to lie to one self.

The village had not only been destroyed; it had been terrorized and Cornelius recognized the style. The raiders who had struck the village came in and set alight the paths of escape, they then forced the villagers into the center of the village and massacred them.
As Cornelius moved passed the village church he saw rows of bodies spiked to the wall, several of the bodies showed clear signs of burning and other tortures... this was not a massacre; this was an action by specialists carefully designed to spread terror and to mock Avalon. These where certainly no ordinary bandits after gold and women but a raid by an enemy with an alternative motive in hand.

"this is the second village in a week... lord protect us" muttered a soldier

Cornelius remained silent and he proceeded into the village

Even the children had not been spared and had been grouped together and... deformed on mass, the bodies of women where also near by and Cornelius assumed that they had been brought there to witness the death and torture of their children before they where also dealt with. Cornelius had only seen such a thing once before but that was in the barbaric lands of the great plains and not at the heart of civilized society.

Cornelius wanted to kill NOW but he had no one to strike against so instead he yelled for his scout to come forward

"Tark come here!"

the young man made his way smoothly, he was one of those few people Cornelius could call a warrior even if the lad's job was to scout ahead of the main force.

"sir?"

"have we revived any word from the capital regarding this matter?"

Tark seemed afraid of Cornelius but this was only natural, Any soldier who did not fear Cornelius was one whom Cornelius would have to keep an eye on.

"No sir, we have received no reply, Our last messenger was found dead hidden among leaves near a side road so..."

Cornelius nodded and waved signaling for Tark that there was no need to go on with the details.

If the messenger had been killed it was likely that a similar fate had befallen the other two messengers Cornelius had sent last week. But what was the point of this? the raiders where clearly seeking to cause a panic in the area; it would be in their best interests to allow such messengers to pass.

Cornelius stopped... not all enemies where rational after all. This was not a bandit raid since the ratio between looting potential plunder and burning it was unequal to the latter's advantage. Maybe The Duke was sponsoring the violence in preparation for an attack, In the dukes case waylaying the messengers made sense since his interests would be more in line with causing dissent in the region while preventing the king from hearing about it; in this way when he marched into the area he would find an already subdued populace in his newly acquired province.

Cornelius needed more information before he would act... but more then anything he needed the prince back in ghosts pass and thus he would also gain the kings ear.

"I want you to travel back to the fort and tell him that he is to assume active command of the fort, you are to take Denar and Eric with you for added protection " said Cornelius making sure the soldier would know that this was not open to debate.

"Are you going somewhere sir?" Asked Tark with both a hint of concern and relief, Cornelius ignored this preferring to focus on the important matter at hand.

"I will leave with the rest of the company and head to the capitol"

As Tark left Cornelius turned to the rest of the company

"You men will follow me! we leave to the capitol in order to report these attacks to the prince and gather additional men for the garrison, we shall collect food in the Dalavar Estate; i think they owe us a favor"

The men at first confused laughed at the last part of the order, most of them had been present when Cornelius led a force to aid the Lord of Dalvar in his fight against the ambitious lord Harding; before their arrival Dalvar's men where being massacred by Harding however with their intervention that soon changed. This memory was particularly pleasant to the men since they got to enjoy the Harding estate's "hospitality" afterwards...