Wizards of Mivon
Cyllw Wyvn Streamskipper
The offspring of a Merfolk and an unknown landwalker, Cyllw is a capricious young Merg who has trouble fitting into the landwalker world. The academy of Mivon has offered her a place to find herself and help her find something to take back to her home sch
Standing at about 5’3", Cyllw is only striking because of her Merfolk heritage. Her hair is a deep green and her skin is faintly blue. She is pretty but not especially so and her slight figure tends to make her meld into the background. This is not unduly upsetting for Cyllw, as she prefers to be unseen than obvious – partly due to always being an oddity or exotic member of a crowd but also because she has a tendency to annoy, offend or even steal from those around her who aren’t part of her small inner circle. Her tutors at the academy have cajoled her into working with other students and she is grudgingly accepting of the new company – secretly, however, she enjoys the new company and the diverse attitudes and personalities the new group offers. Perhaps they may teach her some self control and respect for those who she doesn’t personally value – at least, that is the hope of her tutors.
Part of a growing Merg’s trials of adulthood is finding something new and bringing it back to his or her home school. This is a ritual designed to teach young Merg how to trade, barter and obtain new knowledge and experience. Once they have proved their ability, they are free to journey as they please and seek out new experiences and knowledge from wherever they find it. Merfolk children and tutored by their parents, but Merg’s must prove they have thrown off the shackles and nature of the landwalker parents and are subsequently untutored through this trial. Despite this, it is rare for a Merg to fail and many look forward to it as a taste of the life of travelling and learning that awaits them in adulthood.
Cyllw has begun her trial, and with the aim to learning something new to show her home-school she has taken up an apprenticeship with the wizards of Mivon. She is a little naïve concerning landwalker habits, and constantly walks a fine line between mischief and crime with her extra-curricular activities, but only rarely with malicious intent. She is quite self-serving and always looks to see how she can get the most out of any given situation, sometimes at the expense of others. She is reasonably loyal to her landwalker companions, but can seem fey, fickle and sometimes aloof to the other apprentices. As a result, she has been the target of some minor bullying, but this has only jaded her further against the majority of landwalkers. She has a form of respect for those she works closely with, as well as for the wizards she is learning under but does not regard them in the same way she regards other water-dwellers. She is also sometimes quite condescending or dismissive of certain landwalker concepts, such as property, land ownership and monogamy – Merfolk having a polygamus society, due to their nomadic nature, although this does not make them any less loyal or compassionate towards their mates – but makes an effort to curb her opinions around her friends as she doesn’t want to become completely alienated from the group.
While seeming quite flighty and absentminded, Cyllw is actually very perceptive and is constantly studying her surroundings, her companions and herself. She is also surprisingly private about her real emotions and while voicing plenty of opinions rarely opens herself up for others to study or dissect, and will essentially flee any situation in which she fears that someone is getting close to her personal feelings. This can make her quite vulnerable, but it is a vulnerability she disguises by forcing others away, either by physically removing herself from a conversation or by making the other person leave via verbal dismissal, which can sometimes border on offensive. As such, she has few friends in Mivon, but many acquaintances who associate with her for study of Merg behaviour, to learn more about her, out of desire or some other transient reason. Due to her upbringing, Cyllw does not hold the want to study or simple scholarly interest against those who hold it, and while flirtatious and encouraging with suitors she unilaterally rejects them. While claiming to having not found anyone good enough for her, this rejection is born more out of insecurity than superiority; Cyllw does not view herself as an adult yet, and since only adults can seek mates in Merfolk society she is unsure how to behave if she were to find herself in a relationship with a landwalker – again, similar to her behaviour regarding friendships. However, rather than seek help for this problems, Cyllw views them as a possible weakness that could be exploited against her and, like her other insecurities and fears, hides it behind a wall of cold derision until those who would seek to understand her inner workings give up.
One of her most notable features is that she is easily captivated by stories, even once poorly told or thinly made, and will sit and listen for hours as long as someone is story telling. Many old wizards, travelling bards and roaming warriors have found themselves trapped in taverns telling stories of their youth and adventures until the early hours of the morning, buying drinks for the strangely pretty Merg girl who seems enthralled by their tales and hangs on their every word. Some have misinterpreted her interest, only to be politely, sometimes teasingly, but always firmly rebuffed. Cyllw is always grateful for those who tell her stories, and while not always repaying them the way they would like she never fails to reward them somehow – be it by returning the money they spent on drinks while storytelling (rarely with her own money) or finding a way to easy their journeys out of Mivon (some suddenly find their mounts more grand the morning after, or that their food stores are mysteriously replenished. Her mentors have found that telling stories is in fact a far superior method of teaching Cyllw than actually making her study. She also becomes more open and honest with those who tell her stories, lulled into a sense of security by tales of adventure and great journeys, and these people are nearly always those she calls friends – even if they are not always aware of her friendship.
Cyllw other most notable feature is her persistent refusal to accept landwalker laws and societal norms, instead staying true to the Merfolk ways she learned as a child. While she understands people are upset when they see her taking food from their market stall without paying, instead of buying said food she concludes that as long as people don’t see her steal from them, they don’t get upset which in turn makes it acceptable (“Besides, it’s food! You need food to live. Do they want me to die?”) While getting her in trouble sometimes, she has honed her sleight of hand and distraction techniques so that the problem occurs less often. Similarly, she is not above violence when she deems it required, and has a nasty habit of taking revenge for what she deems unforgivable actions taken against her or her friends – for instance, if someone takes a friends’ place at the dinner table or slights a friend in conversation, Cyllw will likely plot some prank or trap to punish what she deems to be the guilty party. Similarly, if a friend is particularly upset about a theft or personal loss, Cyllw idea of comforting them is to suggest revenge or go about it herself until she can present that friend proof that the debt of emotional loss is repaid. She sees hurting others as better recompense to herself or her friends than to simply replace what was loss and give words of comfort, as most other people would.
While she is quite a selfish, mischievous and sometimes malicious being, perhaps on her journey to adulthood Cyllw will find a maturity that she currently lacks and an understanding she needs to form more solid bonds with her landwalker companions.