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Name: Erythreus Ailward
Species: Aspect of Death
Family: No Biological Family
Face Claim: Alexander Ludwig
Erythreus Harkbeck was one of the most ordinary humans you could have met. He was born in the late 400s to a loving family. Even though he was an only child, he wasn’t spoilt like most would be being alone, he wasn’t a selfish child, but he was an independent one. Working alone, playing alone and sometimes while his parents were still working, eating alone. Erythreus was an intelligent child, He got good grades through school and was always a hard worker, his mother and father loved him dearly. Maybe this was the problem?
Erythreus was, as was said, an independent child. This independence only grew worse as he aged and his confidence grew, soon enough he was rocking the village, a nuisance they called him. He’d go into the woods, disappear for days and return with a bounty of meat that he’d caught. One day however, Erythreus mis-fired, his arrow shot through the trees and his the shoulder of a man. The man was strange, his accomplice even stranger. Their skin was pale and flecked, their mouth were large and slim and covered in red. Disregarding the red –Disease littered the lands with little cures available, so he presumed it was an unknown- around their mouths, Erythreus ran through the trees and tried to offer his healing aid, herbs for the pain and he could have whipped up a remedy to heal the wound up sharpish. But the men refused. The injured one merely stood, tore the arrow from his shoulder with a grunt and held it back, with a smirk.
Scared, Erythreus tried to turn and run, shouting monster through the trees, but the men were faster than he was…faster than anyone he had ever seen was. Erythreus tried to get away, but the two males merely laughed. They spoke in a foreign tongue, outlanders that were hiding in the tree’s, they said “You injure one of us. Your injustice must be answered with justice.” This struck a fear into Erythreus that stripped him of all arrogance he once had. He stood, shaking from head to two and glued to the spot while the two outlanders circled him “Killing him would also be an injustice though brother.” One said, and the other responded “True, so we shalt not kill him.”
In the end, the two brothers struck a deal with the eighteen-year-old Erythreus. They said that on the day of his twenty-first year, He must leave his home and join them in the woods. He must live off the land until his debt is repaid, or his family and village would be slaughtered. Erythreus questioned them, he laughed at them and was allowed back to the village.
The next day, he awoke to screams. His horse had been beheaded, littered with bite marks, the head…Placed on a spike outside the Harkbeck hut. Erythreus believed them, he looked around and spotted two black dots on the horizon by the tree’s, Somehow Erythreus knew they could see him, and so he nodded towards them.
Their contract struck. Erythreus returned home and led out his life, he was a little less warming to others and little more independent in life. But he lost all arrogance and life from his eyes, he went about his days like a robot. His parents were initially worried, but then dispelled it as growth and left him to it.
On the eve of his Twenty-first year, Erythreus awoke early, packed his cow-hide bag and left without a word to his parents. The skies were still dim, and the two men were stood either side of the pole that once held the severed head of his horse, too deep to be pulled out by a human.
Erythreus spent the next three years with these men, what he was proving he didn’t know, but what he did know was that he hated living off the land. He hated moving every day, his feet were bare after the third week, he couldn’t find any shoes to even steal, the clothes on his back were torn and bloody from the kills he made. The kills that weren’t all animals. The two men had forced him to slaughter villages, and they punished him when he didn’t do a good enough job. They expected him to kill women and children, but Erythreus would rather take a beating from the brothers than do this…Not that it did much good, once he had been beaten to an inch of his life, the brothers killed those Erythreus couldn’t. They also didn’t wait for him to recover; they merely left their beating for above the waist. “Your legs still work!” They’d snigger and haul the frail his frail human form to his feet, shoving him on to the next village.
Erythreus grew cold. His abuse made him touchy and contact was always a no-go for him. He even started recoiling from hits from the brothers before their fists even collided.
After three years with the brothers, Erythreus overheard them discussing his fate. Knowing death was on the cards, Erythreus took his things, a leg from their latest kill for the road and tried to escape. He got as far as the cliff-face. Erythreus had never seen the sea, so this sight was a glorious one. The waves crashed against the cliff and the air was thick with the scent of salt water. This was where the brothers found him, laid with his head propped by a rock, intoxicated by the sight of the sea. They didn’t beat him, after a moment of taking in the scene, they offered Erythreus a drink and in thinking it was laced with poison, he drank it all in a single gulp. Poison was quicker than a beating.
But the liquid wasn’t a poison, soon enough he was choking yes, but it wasn’t poison. The brothers had laced it with their blood and the blood was taking effect. A moment later and Erythreus was being launched off the cliff, screaming. The brothers shouted down. “Here lies the body of Erythreus Harkbeck”
Erythreus awoke, cast onto the rocks by the waves, gasping from breath. He was sure he had died, maybe the gods had spared him? Standing, Erythreus rest a hand on a rock and clenched to haul himself up…the rock splintered and crumbled to dust, his muscles rippling. In the end, Erythreus came to the conclusion that whatever monster the brothers were…Erythreus was now one too.
He spent the next years roaming the lands, living in one place for no more than three years, just until the people began to notice that he did not age. After ten years, a seemingly phony wikken screeched Vampire at Erythreus, every time he passed her hut. He left that village after only three months.
After living like this for a couple hundred years, Neglected and no better than an animal, Erythreus was brought back into society by a group of seven others. They, much like him, hadn’t had a good life and wanted to answer injustice with justice. This struck raw with Erythreus and he became the eighth member of their ‘group’. Their leader, so to say, was named Venetus and he had apparently heard of a roaming nomad that was more animal than man, torn from humanity by abuse. Erythreus could say, in the early days of the Ailward (What they had called themselves) only his name.
The Ailward taught him to be a man again, they ignored his peculiar eating habits and the fact that blood was his life-source. Their motto had been "To protect, to progress and to restore balance" which they kept until the mighty King Mitus ridiculed them. Erythreus blamed himself for the King finding out that the 8 weren’t exactly human, his diet was odd and he was still yet to form any real ties with humans, apart from the other 7 Ailward. Monsters they were called, Erythreus especially. He found it all rather amusing in some aspects, that was before they were set to be executed, Erythreus had sworn for years that he was a monsters, his Ailward family telling him he was wrong. But here was a king, labelling him once more as a monster. He knew that, if he wasn’t being arrested and sworn to his brethren that he wouldn’t harm another soul under anger, Erythreus would have become the monster they feared.
Upon the execution, The Gods directed their souls to the heavens. Erythreus had died, and now he was like a ghost in what he bet was the skies. The gods gifted them with a staff each and powers in which to correct the world of man beneath them. Erythreus was given a staff of deep black, like two snakes the wood twirled up in dance and came together at the top to hold a giant red crystal, more vibrant than any ruby set deep into the forehead of an eyeless skull. The staff itself was just shorted than Erythreus, and he learnt that the staff itself held the power to transform him into a dragon.
The transformation itself was painless, Erythreus would be shrouded in black smoke, his figure bubbling and bending painlessly until a large red scaled dragon with deep black eyes stood in the place of the man.
The Ailwards were to be call Aspects, Erythreus was named the Aspect of death, Tasked with the protection of the dead both on the earth like himself, or those who had passed on to the underworld. Erythreus chuckled at first, called himself the modern Hades. But his job was to protect, not to punish.
After their resurrection the Ailward aspects left America as instructed and set up a headquarters upon the isle of sky, the entire island was protected with a spell which kept those with impure intentions out and once they arrived they began to devise their plan for a better world, a world where the supernatural could coexist peacefully among humans and one another.
And the rest, their days in this isle, their protection details –Aspect Guard- And more importantly, Erythreus’ humanity.
The rest was history.