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Profile: Janus and Tula

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  • November 25

    Once again, my readers, I come to you with an account from two noteworthy warriors I met in my travels. I am sure you've heard rumors and stories as a child about the various beings in the darkness. Ghouls, ghosts, wolf-men and witches. Though many account to having seen these shadowy beasts, they are by-and-large not something the average citizen of Skyrim must worry about.
    It was my privilege to meet the siblings who make it so.

    Meeting in their shared home in Windhelm, the two chose to tell me their stories.

    Janus and Tula

    The Hunter Siblings

    (For reason of organization, each of the siblings will have their own section.)

     

    Tula

    Name: Tula

     

    Aliases: Silver, the Sand Serpent, Stendarr's Assassin

     

    Sex: Female

     

    Race: Redguard

     

    Class: Assassin

     

    Alignment: Chaotic Good

     

    Title(s): She is a member of the Dawnguard, a clan of vampire hunters, and former acolyte of Stendarr.

     

    Age: She is twenty-eight as of the 18th of Evening Star

     

    Appearance  

    General Appearance: Tula is a younger lady with a round head and athletic form, and would likely be quite pretty if her lifestyle permitted more self-care. As is, her face has many signs of wear and stress, making her look older than she is. Janus says that she greatly resembles their father, almost strangely so, which Tula seems to take pride in.

     

    Skin Tone: Tula and her brother have the same earth-brown skin, though hers is rougher, and far more weathered.

     

    Height: She stands at around 5'6, though hunches down slightly, like a stalking animal.

     

    Weight: Being a more muscular woman, Tula is around 140 pounds.

     

    Build: Muscular and lithe. Her build brings that of a dancer to mind.

     

    Eyes: Like her brother, she has bright, amber colored eyes. Unlike him, however, hers seem far harsher and intimidating, almost supernaturally so.

     

    Hair: Coarse, wooly hair that Redguards are known for, kept in locks, styled into a single strip down the middle of her head. (I have learned since that the common term is a 'mohawk.' Landstrider culture never ceases to confuse me.)

     

    Apparel: Usually adorned in lighter, more mobile armor, Tula has stated that heavier alternatives simply slow her down. At the time of our interview, she was dressed in the Dawnguard apparel.

     

    Identifying Marks: She and her brother have the same identifying insignia painted across their noses and cheeks, a white symbol. She also possesses many, many scars, including a streak from her right eye to her lip.

     

    Weapons: Tula was more than eager to show me her weapons, and she almost seemed proud as she showed them to me- a beautifully carved, enchanted silver blade she called "Smite", and a wicked-looking, sturdy throwing hatchet. She was sure to demonstrate to me her proficiency with both. She also claims to be an excellent archer, though she flat-out refused to let me see her bow, saying that "it's not mine to show off."

     

     

     

    Background

     

    Special Abilities/Skills: As her job requires, Tula is an incredibly adept monster hunter, and was able to describe in impressive detail each vampire clan, as well as a variety of daedra and undead. She's also a decent healer, though not as well-versed as Janus. Lastly, she allegedly has near-perfect sight in darkness, though she herself is unsure why that is.

     

    Place of Birth: A small village just outside of Taneth, Hammerfell.

     

    Religion: Though not as religious as her brother, Tula still recognizes the Divines, Stendarr and Akatosh (Auriel, she called him) in particular. "I've seen first-hand why I should respect Auriel," she explained. "and that was enough for me."

     

    Residence: A flat in Windhelm, shared with her brother Janus.

     

    Political Affiliations: Openly disapproves of the Aldmeri Dominion, but has no real care for the Empire or Stormcloaks.

     

    Occupation: Daedra hunter, bounty hunter, and occasionally a mercenary.

     

    Organizations/Factions: The Dawnguard, Windhelm Guard, the Coventry of Arkay.

     

    Favorite food/drink: During our interview, she seemed to only pick at her actual dinner, but was incredibly enthusiastic about the prospect of my buying her a sweet roll as courtesy.

     

    Interests:  Most forms of sparring, swimming, and oddly enough, history of the Great War.

     

    Flaws: According to her brother, Tula has "let her anger consume her." While a very competent fighter, Tula seems obsessed with hunting her prey, to the point that she seems to actively take pleasure in harming and killing those she sees as demonic. In fact, I would consider her love of fighting and hunting to border on mild psychopathy.

     

    Citizenship: Citizen of Hammerfell, resident of Skyrim.

     

    Relationships: Incredibly close with her brother, Janus, though they bicker as all siblings do. Seems to view Isran, her mentor and employer, as a sort of father figure. Her closest non-familial relationship is likely Serana, a pale, young lady who visits often and has, in Tula's words, "been through Oblivion with me." The exact nature of their friendship eludes me.
    While she never knew her parents, she seems to have a greatly romanticized image of them, her father especially, and is clearly bothered by never having known them.

     

    Personality: Despite her hard demeanor and fanatical hatred of all things Daedric, Tula seems to be a genuinely good person at heart, with an intense desire to protect those she cares about and stop those that would harm them. However, it does not take an expert in sociology such as myself to tell that there is a darkness to her, something angry and vicious. I cannot help but wonder whether she hunts the unnatural out of duty and disgust as she says, or if there is a more sadistic drive behind it.

    Janus 

     

    Name: Janus

     

    Aliases: Lightmaker, Arkay's Hands, Brother Janus

     

    Sex: Male

     

    Race: Redguard

     

    Class: Monk

     

    Alignment: Neutral Good

     

    Title(s): Janus is a Brother of the Covenant of Arkay, an ally of the Dawnguard, and an associate of the Temple of the Divines

     

    Age: Janus is thirty-one as of the 3rd of Hearthfire.

     

     

     

    Appearance 

     

    General Appearance: Janus, despite being the older sibling, seems far younger than his sister in spirit, with a far more relaxed look to him. His face is ovalish, with lighter skin than his sister, and his lean build makes him seem much less intimidating than her.

     

    Skin Tone: Like his sister, Janus has dark, healthy brown skin, though slightly lighter and far smoother.

     

    Height: Roughly 6'1.

     

    Weight: Around 200 pounds.

     

    Build: Janus is a lean fellow from a monastic lifestyle, though his reliance on hand-to-hand combat implies that he lacks not in physical strength.

     

    Eyes: Like his sister (and, according to him, their father), Janus has brightly colored eyes like amber, albeit almond-shaped, and there's a warmness to them that I've yet to see in his sister's.

     

    Hair: Long and dark, usually kept down to his shoulders with an improvised ponytail complimenting it. He also keeps a thin beard, apparently to hide a scar he gained from an encounter with some 'troublesome Falmer.'

     

    Apparel: Like many monks, Janus wears blessed robes, worn and faded from years of use, though he also sports armored gauntlets and boots a la the Vigilants. Wears a religious sigil at all times, usually that of Arkay.

     

    Identifying Marks: Like Tula, Janus has a white insignia painted onto his face, the mark of the monastery where they were raised. 

     

    Weapons: As a monk, Janus has chosen not to learn any weapons, instead preferring to use his holy magic to heal himself and others. However, he does have some more to his aresenal; he's a proficient hand-to-hand fighter, even besting Tula in that regard, and is capable of using Illusion magic to divert foes. He says that while he can use a bow when needed, he generally leaves that to his sister.

     

     

     

    Background

     

    Special Abilities/Skills: Janus is an incredible student of Restoration, clearly experienced with his craft, able to heal most wounds and destroy undead with little effort. He's also a talented martial artist, apparently learned from a fellow nomad.
    Interestingly enough, Tula also says that he is a naturally skilled necromancer, which Janus admitted to with shame. I chose not to inquire further.

     

    Place of Birth: A small village near Taneth, Hammerfell.

     

    Religion: Janus is an extremely pious worshipper of the Divines, believing that he owes all he has to them. Much like his sister, he seems particularly fond of Akatosh, or Auriel as they call him.

     

    Residence: A modest flat in Windhelm, shared with Tula.

     

    Political Affiliations: While moderately supportive of the Empire, Janus condemns war, calling it "an abhorent insult to the Divines, to take life that only the Gods may take."

     

    Occupation: Healer, adventurer, daedra hunter, and part-time member of the Dawnguard.

     

    Organizations/Factions: The Dawnguard (more as a medic and strategist than an actual hunter), the Coventry of Arkay, and the Vigilant of Stendarr.

     

    Favorite food/drink: Grilled leeks and a mug of beer, though he has a disdain for meat.

     

    Interests:  Reading, meditating, practicing his arts, and nights spent patrolling.

     

    Flaws: In stark contrast to his sister, Janus seems to loathe the more violent aspect of his duties, only fighting because he believes that the gods wish him to, and to protect his sister. His ideals are also a tad obstructive, as he is far too trusting, and according to Tula, "he forgets what kind of world we live in." However, this seems to be completely inversed when dealing with daedra worship, where his callousness and fanaticism is rivaled only by his sister.

     

    Citizenship: Citizen of Hammerfell, resident of Skyrim.

     

    Relationships: Extremely close with his sister, Tula, sees himself as her protector. He considers all priests and acolytes to be his kin, often going out of his way to discuss ideals with them. He studies under Dawnguard member Florentius Baenius, captivated by his "communion with Arkay." I have seen him speak with great passion about a woman named Danica, though he ardently denied any relationship with her, insisting that she is a fellow worshipper and nothing else.
    Perhaps I should add his terrible lying to his list of flaws.

    Personality: Janus seems far more down-to-Nirn than his sister, often being the voice of reason in their adventures. While Tula excels at fighting for what she believes in, Janus seems gifted in finding a non-lethal alternative. While seemingly naive of the world's harshness, the young man insists that "there is no darkness that may consume [him], so long as [he] has the gods and Tula by his side." However, it is clear to see that he holds much weight on his shoulders, and his formidable body count haunts him.

    Backstory

    (For the sake of accuracy, I let them decide on a written-out version, rather than listen to them argue about details for hours on end.)

         The easiest place to begin would likely be with the birth of Tula; their mother, Esmerelda, was already suffering from mental illness when Janus was born, and by the time Tula was delivered, she was becoming incapable of raising them. When Tula was only a few months old, their father, a man named Mordecai, was left to aid in the rebellion against the Thalmor, and never returned. When their mother's health became too grave for her to feed them, the local monks of Arkay intervened and took them in. It was here that the three-year-old Janus began learning the teachings of love, peace, and brotherhood that dictated their way of life, and would soon shape his. Tula was too young to remember, but it was just shy of her second birthday that they received word of their mother's death.

    While Janus came to strongly admire the teachings of the monks and found peace and acceptance among them, Tula grew restless and rebellious as she got older; the elders believed that never knowing her parents impacted her far more deeply than Janus, who at least had memories of them. While her brother began to learn healing, meditation, and the glory of the gods, Tula turned to different teachings- the more aggressive, militant side of religion. She began learning how to slay undead at age ten, and by thirteen was becoming a skilled swordsman. As this happened, she began to feel alienated by the monks. Janus was the same doting, older brother he'd always been, but the elders treated her like she was a dog that bit, distant and wary. The other acolytes began avoiding her, especially the other girls. This feeling of isolation and not belonging was only worsened as she found herself drawn to other girls, in the way that the monks had told her was unnatural...
    On her fifteenth birthday, Tula took her few belongings and set out into the unknown.

    Janus spent the next several years at the monastery, alone among friends. He'd been more accepted than his sister, but without her, he had lost the one person he could truly relate to. Nevertheless, the young man stayed where he was, enjoying the sense of comradery. As the years passed, his thoughts turned from his sister and back onto his own enlightenment. He began engaging in pilgrimages every few months, he began using his skills as a healer in the nearby towns, and even attained the rank of Brother, a full-fledged monk. Life was simple and modest, but it made Janus happy.
    That was when it came crashing down.
    At the age of twenty-three, Janus was returning home from a pilgrimage when he came home to a slaughter- the monastery he'd grown up in was in ruin, burned and desecrated, the bodies inside mutilated. Wracked with grief and anger, Janus made a vow. He would find the monster that did this, and he would show them the wrath of the Gods, even if he had to wade into Oblivion itself.

    Tula had not had much better luck in those years. The first months were agony. Sand storms, scorpions, raiders and beasts. It was almost half a year before she began to evolve. She fought back, she endured, she learned how to survive between towns. And slowly but surely, she learned everything there was to know about destroying the undead. Hammerfell had no shortage of vampires, ghosts, and sorcerers for her to hone her skills against, and she eventually earned her nickname of "The Sand Serpent."

    As time passed and the two grew and matured, the distance between them shrank as their quests brought them each to Skyrim. Whereas Tula came upon hearing myths of werebears, Janus had heard word of his prey once more- the ghoulish being that had killed his brotherhood had left a similar scene in Skyrim. Each one entered the icy land unaware that the other did the same.

    It was in the snows of the Pale that the two reunited. Janus, on his way to Dawnstar to investigate rumors of nightmares, had stopped to meet the local Vigilant. Tula, on the other hand, was returning from her encounter with a local clan of vampires, and stopped to show off her kills. The reunion was a warm one, and they've not parted since.

     

    After a bit more talking and discussion of matters that are best kept secret, the siblings wished me well and sent me on my way. While I am fascinated to hear the story of any who will tell it, I can't help but feel that I've left with as many questions as were answered. And while I am grateful of their services, I can only wonder- what have they seen that they didn't tell me about?

    Ah, but worry yourself not, dear reader. Whatever darkness lurks in the night, at least now you know who guards against it. With that, I hope you may sleep a little sounder.

    Tidings,

    Not-Always-Lost

     

  • November 25

    That was a really interesting read Not-Always-Lost, really interesting. I liked the way that you've worked in the two different characters and found both of them interesting. Personally, I think I enjoyed Janus a little more but I don't know if there's a reason for it, just thought you presented him really well as a Cleric/Healer sort of character.

    Fun RP Profile. You mentioned that you've posted another one, and I wouldn't mind giving it a read if you could give me a name or link. Oh and a way to link them all together without just posting a link would be adding a 'Not-Always-Lost' tag to your list of tags, that way someone can find any piece of work that you've posted in the RP Group.

  • November 25

    Thank you so much, Mega, I appreciate the feedback! The only characters referenced so far are these two, a dragonborn named Galdur, and the narrator, Lost. 

  • Member
    November 26

    Ooh, a double-profile, very nice! This is a nice read, Lost, and the characters are interesting as well - do I sense a ying-yang thing going on?

    Could you try and go into a little more detail when describing physical features, apparel etc. They tell a lot about a character by what they represent, and I feel like I could get a better grasp of the characters if I had a clearer image of them in my head.

    And quick question, is there any reason why Tula calls Auriel Auriel and not Akatosh or Big Papa (which I think is the same?). Seems a little odd that someone who's father fought against the Elves would use the Elvish name for a god.

  • November 26

    Well I never outright said it, though I should have given more hints, they've already completed the Dawnguard questline by this point. And now that you mention it, you're right; I could certainly describe them better. I appreciate your critiques!

  • Member
    November 27

    Not-Always Lost said:

    Well I never outright said it, though I should have given more hints, they've already completed the Dawnguard questline by this point. And now that you mention it, you're right; I could certainly describe them better. I appreciate your critiques!

    Ah, that's fair enough, I suppose being given a badass bow by a god makes you like them a bit more!

  • Member
    December 2

    These are interesting and well-rounded characters, Lost :) A pleasure to read. I see Tula has the sweeter tooth, while Janus prefers his leeks. Have you ever actually tasted grilled leeks? I haven't, nor do I ever plan to :D I can't imagine grilling them would make them taste any better.

  • December 3

    Paws said:

    These are interesting and well-rounded characters, Lost :) A pleasure to read. I see Tula has the sweeter tooth, while Janus prefers his leeks. Have you ever actually tasted grilled leeks? I haven't, nor do I ever plan to :D I can't imagine grilling them would make them taste any better.

     

     

    I have not yet, though it's been on my to-try list for a bit. I just needed a vegetarian food. The sweetroll bit was mostly meant to add some comic relief to Tula's grim personality, and it makes sense that once she fled from a life of modesty, she'd enjoy finally not have to avoid desserts :P

    Thank you so much for the feedback!