Gift of Eomar
Human female lvl. 7 fighter
Katell Crawford stands like a career soldier in civilian clothes – straight-backed and shifting her weight – an uneasy at ease. She introduces herself as Crawford rather than Katell. She walks through the city in a slow, deliberate way. Her posture is guarded. Only her darting eyes give away her concern.
Crawford is a big woman – 5’10" and thick with muscle. She wears her hair pulled back in a masculine style. She has strong features, and when she was younger she was androgynously attractive.But now she’s wrinkled and weathered and leathered and scarred, to say nothing about what happened to her eye. She’s only thirty-eight, but she looks rough. Until she speaks, sometimes she’s mistaken for a man. This suits her fine – it used to be hell to be pretty in the army.
Last year Crawford worked in the petty infantry of Sir Nolan Fallon. She’s still wearing their standard-issue leather boots. On her way to Embassytown she scuffed them up as to be unrecognizable and – just to be sure – cut out the embossed leather clover of the Fallon house with her paring knife, stuffed the hole with rabbit hide. Her cape is standard issue from the infantry of Lord Grenfell, her wristguards looted from a dead companion in the House Madrigal’s fourth company, and even her under shirt bears the party per pale of the petty kingdom of Battenburg. Each sigil is patched, blackened, or scrubbed beyond recognition. Only her breast-plate and pauldrons bear a recognizable motif: the wolf of the ill-fated Chapter of Thirteen. But who would bother an old thirteener? Who’s alive to recognize the mark? It’s a small risk, to distinguish herself like that. If it becomes a problem she can always ditch the armor.
Sir Fallon’s company divided their infantry by gender. The girls liked Crawford, looked up to her. Most of them too young and weak to thrust a sword. Crawford was a sergeant. She always gravitates to sergeant. High enough you don’t dig latrines, low enough you don’t get executed if you lose. “You should be a knight,” said a fresh-scrubbed private, admiring Crawford’s accuracy while she drilled. Sure, Crawford could be a knight. Easy. But a knight is a target, and she knows from experience that a guy up on top of a horse is easier to hit.
Old soldiers tend to act in one of two ways. Some of them are gruff and standoffish. Others are delusional with grandeur. The girls liked Crawford because she was neither. Crawford didn’t give unsolicited advice or regale them with tall tales of battle. She wasn’t gruff or unfeeling – she sat around the fire with them, laughed at their jokes. On special occasions she’d poach a rabbit or a pheasant to cook for dinner. She didn’t ignore them, she didn’t preach to them. She was dispassionate but pleasant. Uncommitted. Professional.
She called the girls by their last names. She never asked about their families.
At least nine out of fifteen of Crawford’s unit had died in the grand battle of Sir Fallon’s war. Crawford was already leaving the field, heading to the forest to the south, thinking of Embassytown. One girl was still alive when Crawford left – half crushed under the corpse of a horse. The girl had been pleading to Crawford, begging. Crying out for “Katell”. Crawford carried on. The girl was already dead. And besides, Crawford doesn’t like to be called by her first name.
At her intro to the campaign, Crawford has been hired to escort Margot DeVry to a symposium in Khalsbrad. Crawford is also in the city for her yearly meeting with Darrek Longmont. She for five years she has paid Darrek to search out the location of Midir Emery and their children, Etain and Llyra. However, when Derrek unexpectedly raised his prices, the deal went sour. Crawford needs to raise 800gp before morning or lose sight of Midir and her children forever.