Emperor Zavaen Pureblade I, called the Beacon of the Empire, is the young twenty year old Emperor of New Tamriel, the first Emperor after the Fall of the Republic. He was born on the Second of Last Seed, in the 5th year of the Fourth Age to Vryn Ithil, Lord of House Ithil, and Lady Kelsey Ithil. In the remote range called Anor, he was raised until his seventeenth birthday. From the time, he could hold a sword, Zavaen always wanted to join the Imperial Legion. When the day of his seventeenth birthday arrived, he made known his intentions to join the Imperial Watch. Tempers flew and Zavaen was forbidden from enlisting, yet he paid no heed to that instruction and left the range of Ithil. So our story begins, at the birth of Zavaen, a man destined for greatness.
Part I: While in Ithil Edit
On the Range of Anor Edit
On the Second of Last Seed, a baby boy was born to the family of Ithil. He was named Zavaen, after his great-great grandfather of Lady Kelsey's side. From his birth, Zavaen was raised well, as a young noble, and by the time he was five years of age, he had been to the Imperial City once and the fief of Chorrol twice.
When he was seven years of age, and on his second trip the capital, he was given the day off while Vryn, his father, met with the Elder Council (to swear fealty to them till a Crown-Prince was chosen). Wandering through the Market District, he made his way into the Legion Depot, where he saw for the first time the Imperial Legion. It was there that he also met Jailer Pruner, who took him on a tour of the Depot. Zavaen immediately fell in love with the idea of being a soldier and he admired all sects of the military, from the Foresters, to the Watch, to the common soldiers. From Pruner, he also learned one other bit of information that would affect his life momentously; you had to be seventeen to enlist in the Legion.
Then, Vryn came to collect him and while they rode in the caravan back to the Range of Anor, Zavaen told his father all he had learned from Pruner. A decade later, that would all come to fruition in a dark baptism of fire.
Sixteen and One...What A Woe Edit
When Zavaen awoke on his seventeenth birthday, he made his way to his bathing room and bathed, cleaning himself to make himself presentable as if he was to see someone like Chancellor Ocato. Then, he dressed himself in the Ithilien Guard armor, a chainmail hauberk with a dulled orange hauberk over it, a raven in blue in the chest of the hauberk. Strapping a silver sword to his waist, the man made his way to the Study of the Lord, where his father could be found.
Ever since his trip to the City, and his meeting with Pruner, he had nursed a place for the Imperial Legion in his heart and had began training in combat with the House Guard seven years ago, much to the disapproval of Vryn and Kelsey. He had made up his mind just a year ago, to enlist in the Legion when he was seventeen, called sixteen and one by the people of House Ithil. It was for that purpose that Zavaen now entered the Study of his father, where Vryn Ithil was seated behind the great ebony desk on a raised platform in the spacious room.
(The following is Zavaen's journal entry III, recorded sometime after his departure from Ithil)
Me: Father, may I have but a moment of your time?
*Father looks me up and down, nodding at how clean I appear, but my Ithilien armor he clucks at*
Father: But of course, my son. How can I help you?
Me: I will not beat around the blade, my father. As you know, I am sixteen and one this day
Father: Indeed! Your party will be grand, for you are of age in a mere amount of hours, Zavaen. I've been meaning to speak to you about a certain guest. Mir--
Me: Father! Pardon my interruption, but I did not come here to talk to you about my party. I came to talk to you about my future...what I'd like to pursue in adulthood
*My father puts down his quill at this time, and steeples his fingers, looking me straight in the eye. For the first time I notice the Sword of Anor, a relic of my family, is lying on his desk*
Father: I pardon you of your indiscretion, Zavaen. But tell me, what is your goal in adulthood. You do understand that you should be...will be...the Steward of Ithil, while Daen takes my place as Lord?
Me: I understand that, Father
Father: Then what do you want, son?
Me: Father...I want to join the Imperial Legion, be a member of the Watch
*At this, my father's eyes bulge and sinks into his seat, before storming into a rage, screaming at me and jumping up from his seat. These words strike me as far as the core of my being*
Father: WHAT!?! Is being a noble not good enough for you?! Do you wish to be some rabble in the barracks, a footman in Morrowind or Skyrim? Do you want to meet your death is some disease-riled fort, or by an arrow in the leg, where you bleed out because no one gives a care about you!? NO!!! I WILL NOT CONDONE THIS!!
Me: Father! Listen to reason! I will not be deterred from this path! Your blessing or not!
Father: You would aim to become a rabble-soldier, then disobey your father...your sire!?! I will not let you destroy the honor that generations of Ithiliens have built! I brought you into this world, and I can sure as Dagon take you out!!!!
*To my horror, my father picks up the Sword of Anor, and rushes from behind his desk, flying towards me with the thin sword of my family raised high. For all of his grandeur and wealth, my father is no swordsman, but after seven years of unrelenting practice, I was. Heeding my sense for self-preservation, I whipped my silver longsword out of its sheath and batted away my father’s weak jab. Then, moving against my very will, I spun my own sword around the Sword of Anor and sent it flying from my father’s hands, and I took advantage of his shocked reaction to drive my own blade through his chest. My father was dead, impaled upon my own sword. I dropped the weapon and without a backwards glance, ran and left the estate through a back entrance and mounted my horse, Galedon, and rode out of Ithil, for the New Imperial City.
Part II: A Ranger's Life Edit
Zavaen Pureblade made his way from the Range of Anor, which was sequestered on the borders of Morrowind, to the city of Cheydinhal, where he sold his Ithilien armor for enough coin to buy a room at the Bridge Inn, the nicer resort of the city. After a month of staying in Cheydinhal and finding work as a part-time stable hand at Black Water Stables, the now-nomad left, with only the clothes on his back, food from the Inn, and his ever present silver longsword girt at his hip.
It was on the young man's way from the City of the Horse, to the capital of the Republic, which Marauders laid upon him from the Black Axe gang, a collaboration of Blackwood mercenaries, free-lance Thieves, and united Marauders. Zavaen managed to fight off an advance squad of the enemy, using Galedon to his advantage, mounted combat spelling doom for the Axers.
However, when the Black Axe brought out their archers, who were concealed smartly in the treeline, Zavaen fell, dodging many but being pierced by over four arrows, one in each shoulder and two in his right thigh. When he thought all was lost and collapsed from his horse, he heard the twang of a bow different than that of the Axers and through his rapidly fading vision, he saw men in green cloaks disengage from the forest, many charging towards the remaining footsoldiers, and even more turning their oak longbows to the forest, picking off the Axer Archers.
Then, a single man, garbed in the livery of his saviors, knelt down by the former Ithilien and cradled his head, whispering to him softly, in a comforting tone.
Rangers of the EmpireEdit
The Rangers of the Empire transported the gravely injured Pureblade nearly across the country of Cyrodill, to their home in the rustic city of Vario, north of Kvatch and east of Anvil. Zavaen was taken to the clinical building at Vario, where the Mysterious Ranger and the beautiful nurse Mirande Thornleaf tended him. Rudimentary surgery had to be performed on the Pureblade for the two arrows that found a home in his shoulders were poisoned with a paralyzation agent but was successfully removed with the use of powerful healing vials made by the Apothecary Crombsy.
A week after Zavaen had been brought to Vario, he finally was able to retain consciousness enough to find out the name of the Mysterious Ranger and everything that had happened since he fell near-death over a week and a half ago. The Ranger was none other than the brother of Ned Pruner, who Zavaen had met so long ago in the Imperial Legion compound. Jaden Pruner, the Ranger, invited Zavaen for dinner, where he explained everything about the Rangers of the Empire, shortcalled the Imperial Rangers.
Then, Jaden went into detail about how the Rangers had seen Zavaen in combat with the Black Axes before they had been ready to assist him and he tendered an offer to him. For his experience with the blade, they would teach him the ways of the bow and allow him to become a true member of the Imperial Rangers. The Pureblade quickly accepted, and was taken to Marsul, the Quartermaster, and issued a oak longbow, two knives of varying length and a knife belt, and seven sets of the green and brown livery of the Order. Jaden explained that the four bunk houses of the Imperial Rangers, each holding four Rangers, were full but he had a rather spacious attic in his house if Zavaen would like it, or he could stay in the Clinic, though on the floor of the waiting room, since the two beds were needed for medical situations.
Indebted to his savior and never one to take the easy way out, Zavaen chose the attic and set up a bedroll and pillow given to him by Jaden and him, with the Chieftain's help, he hauled a pine footlocker to place his new clothing in and attached a rack to hold his bow and sword. Setting up took most of the day, Zavaen, still recovering, was tired, and he bid Jaden a good night and was promised to start his training in three days time.
Time In Vario Edit
Zavaen spent close to six months as a Ranger of the Empire in Vario, training his brother-Rangers in ways of the blade, more advanced than their basic knowledge while he in turn learned the way of an Archer, as he had only used a hunting bow while on the Range of Anor. He learned to fire a single arrow quickly, then for accuracy, then he moved on to two arrows and even by five and a half months, was shooting three arrows in one go, all for accuracy.
The Pureblade was a true Imperial Ranger and as such, he took on the responsibilites of taking care of Vario alongside Jaden, Mirande, and the others, as well as being part of Scouting Parties, mostly going to Anvil, as Kvatch was still being rebuilt. Then the time came for Zavaen to recieve his first set of true orders as a Ranger, one that would take him away from the Gold Coast. On order of Jaden Pruner, Chieftain of the Imperial Rangers and Mayor of Vario, Zavaen was to travel to Bruma along with four other Rangers and join the Tomb-Warden Division, elite guardians of the tombs of the former royal line of Bruma, as well as the caverns and Akaviri treasure hordes. He was to live at Pale Pass, rebuilt from the time of the Army of Reman. Zavaen Pureblade would leave at dawn on the morrow.
The journey from Vario to Bruma, or more specifically, Pale Pass, took nearly three months, stretching from Last Seed to Frost Fall. The company of soon-to-be Wardens travelled to Chorrol within a month and a half, spending two weeks of relaxation with their brethren, the Tree Guards, those heavy assault Rangers who protected the fiefdom of Chorrol.
Then the journey picked up and within the next month and a half, Zavaen and his four other brothers were at the doors of Pale Pass, having already given their orders to the Gate Guards. The Pureblade felt horribly foolish as the uniform of the Tomb-Wardens was thick white leathers with red Dragon symbols emblazoned on their chest pieces, while the uniform of the Vario sect was light green and brown clothing, with a faded brown Dragon on the chest piece. The Wardens also had mouth and nose covers attached to their hoods, whereas the Vario Rangers only had a simple hood.
The new arrivals were gestured in and to the Chamber of Mikashi, where Azon Minivrel was waiting, dressed in lighter white clothing. Unlike the Pale Pass of the Third Era, the Fourth Era boasted oil torches around every corner and rugs on the cold tiles. A ingenious invention had also been made by one of the think-tanks at the Pass, and their bathtubs were heated by a covered candle below the tub, a plastic cover put over the candle, then a hole cut in the bottom of the tub, finishing it off with placing the tube in the hole.
A Ranger named T'rok handed the orders to Azon and the Chief-Warden scanned them and nodded. He bid them welcome to the Tomb-Wardens and commanded Silvri, his second, to see the 'Vario brothers to quarters and get them new clothing and replace their bows with our yew. Also, show them how to forge a Nord sword, or the swords they're carrying will turn brittle and shatter within a week'.