At the same time that Markam's misadventures were taking place, a rather unique and odd young woman, by the name of Bryony Tyler, was just getting started on her chores.
As you soon may find, Bryony's chores were much different from Markam's simple farming jobs. She lived in the magnificent and noble kingdom of Talidan, the blacksmithing kingdom.
When most people think of Talidan, they think of metals, most often iron or steel. This isn't necessarily a representation of what they work so hard to shape and build. It is more to describe the way it is run, the government, as well as the people.
The ruler of Talidan, King Qerrawin the Noble, was a man of principles. Some called him strict, some say he ruled with an iron fist. (Hence the thoughts of metallurgy.) I wish I could say they were wrongly accusing him, but that would be lying, and lying is a bad habit to get into. He was a very strict man, but he was, in no way, an evil one. His pride kept him from that.
Politics aside, because no one really enjoys talking about that, we see Bryony Tyler in her family's blacksmith shop. The Tyler family was esteemed all over the kingdoms for their elegant yet durable ironwork. The head of the household, Bryony's father, Aerin Tyler, had three elder sons, Eliam, Elie, and Elian and two elder daughters, Arian and Ariadon. The two daughters had already married and left the house, each to different villages and different kingdoms.
Bryony was the sixth eldest child and the seventh youngest in their family of thirteen, not including the relatives that lived with them. There was her hag of an aunt, Madger and her husband, Krevit. There were her parents as well, Aerin and Lissen Tyler.
It was an extremely ordinary morning. Bryony was amidst the blacksmith shop, tending the fire in the furnace.
She tossed an armful of firewood into the furnace as the white-hot flames consumed the thick logs, crackling graciously. She shut the heavy steel door on it, wiping the soot away from her dark brown eyes that matched her short hair in color. It was sort of an ashy brown, a graying color, even though she was only twenty-three. The same thing happened to most people that lived there, probably because of the lack of consistent sunlight or all the ash and soot, so they all looked like they could be siblings.
"Oi, Bryony, breakfast is ready!" She looked up, hearing her aunt call her.
"Yes, auntie, I was just getting the furnaces started!" Bryony yelled before adding quietly. "Like you told me too."
She brushed some ash off of her nose, sneezing lightly. The young woman jogged inside the brick house.
The smell of cinnamon and turnips fragranced the air. The dining room was loud and lively as her many siblings pushed to get their breakfast. She spotted one of her youngest brothers, Nalellan, struggling to reach the food with his short four year old arms. Bryony scooped him up and leaned over the table so he could grab something.
Aerin Tyler had a very authoritative appearance. With just one look, he could motivate legions of people to do what he asked. Being a father of thirteen children, this quality came in handy. As soon as he entered the busy dining room, everyone had settled down and sat around the wooden table. Bryony sat close to the edge with little Nalellan in her lap.
"Morning Tylers." He greeted them warmly, taking a seat at the head of the table. The family all mumbled their own morning greetings, except for a small conspicuous 'ahem' coming from none other than his sister.
"And the Rosewoods as well." He smiled before feeling a little tug at his sleeve, proving to be his youngest daughter, Sodia. Her father lifted her up and sat her on his lap.
"Dear, the mail's here." Bryony's mother, Lissen Tyler, set a stack of letters on the table and kissing her husband lightly on the cheek.
Aerin looked through the mail, tossing letters to their rightful owner. A letter with a heart shaped seal found it's way to Bryony.
'To the Tyler family,
You have been cordially invited to the wedding of Edanna Rosewood to Rehan Darwin. The location is in the village of Adriade in the Kingdom of Nem'
"Auntie, Edanna's getting married." Bryony mumbled, holding up the letter for them to see. Her aunt quickly snatched it out of her hands and scanned it over frantically.
"How dare she get married and not tell me! I'm her mother!" She exclaimed, waving the letter frantically before grumbling. "A man from Nem too... gold digger."
"You forgot that the bride's family pays for the wedding." Her husband added.
Her aunt continued to ramble on about how awful and ungrateful her daughter was while her husband just nodded along. Bryony felt a pang of sympathy for poor Edanna, whom probably meant to send something to her parents but was too busy. Since she was their only child, it made it worse.
Bryony's older brother, Eliam, decided to interrupt. "Hey, Bryony, when are you gettin' hitched?"
The entire room went silent, even the little ones. Lissen looked at her daughter expectantly.
"Not 'til I've had my adventure." She replied coolly.
You see, the thing that set Miss Bryony from the others is that she refused to be wed until she felt that her life had been 'lived' to its fullest. However, in most kingdoms but especially Talidan, adventures were highly discouraged.
"Marriage is an adventure, dear." Lissen smiled lightly.
Bryony rolled her eyes, chuckling good-naturedly. "You know that's not what I mean, Ma."
"Dearie, I think you should at least consider it as an option." Her father nudged her with his elbow.
She was about to retort, but she was interrupted by a rough knock on the door. "I'll get it."
Bryony set Nalelllan on her former seat and walked to the door. She opened it with a swing of her arm. "'Ello, this is the Tyler residence, what could I help you with?"
A man stood awkwardly in front of the door. She could tell he wasn't from around here, based on how pale his skin was, which wasn't too pale, but it didn't have the same ashy quality. His hair was dark brown, messy and in a small ponytail, which meant it was too messy and long to be safe near an open flame. He wore a long dark cloak, another fire hazard, that had a decent dusting of ash from walking around. He looked kind of sick from all the smog.
"I'm looking for donations for my... organization." The man regained most of his composure, but he still looked a little out of place.
"Er, what's your organization?" She asked suspiciously.
His face went paler. "Never mind. Have a nice day."
The dark-haired man hurried and tried to leave, but Bryony stepped on the hem of his cloak, holding him back. "Who are you, exactly?"
"None of your business." He growled, pulling his cloak out from under her canvas shoe. She stumbled back, holding her arms out to catch her balance.
He walked off with a swish of his cloak. She frowned, a determined look on her face. Bryony jogged over and tapped his shoulder.
"Answer me!" She whined, jabbing his shoulder with her pointer finger.
"Darren Grey." He swatted her hand away. "Now go away!"
He stomped off, not waiting to hear her response. Soon enough, he had disappeared into the village, leaving her in the middle of a road. She frowned, contemplating before she heard a carriage driver yell at her. She mumbled an apology and sat on the stone porch of her house, glancing at the morning sky. It was smoggy and not very encouraging, but it stirred something inside of her.
"Darren Grey, you are a curious man..." She mumbled, plotting.
OOC: For some reason I have a feeling people are refusing to read this story because of the unpopular opinions mentioned. But if you agree with them or read it anyways, bless you.
I've seen people accept OCs into their story, so I'm going to try something like that. Just fill out the form and I'll try and get your character in for at least a few chapters. You can request certain roles, but otherwise, I'll choose 'em. Also, don't give me a name. This may sound weird, but I need to think of them myself.
Thanks for reading, mi bambinos.