Siren was unveiled during our Kickstarter campaign and quickly became a true fan-favorite. Her frigid beauty and the merciless glee she takes in the suffering of others easily fascinate. But what could have happened to her to make her so cold-hearted? Well, that’s the story I’m going to tell you today!
Inola, Siren’s mother, was a knowledgeable herbalist and an accomplished healer. She had married Halian, whose talent as a bowman would have easily allowed him a brilliant career in the army. But why would he have wanted to leave his lovely wife behind? Instead, he used his arrows to collect all sorts of furs and leathers, that he would then tan and sew. With the garbs he made and the remedy she concocted, they were able to build a comfortable life for themselves.
When Inola got pregnant, the happy couple moved to a quiet, friendly little village, who welcomed them with open arms. They made such a charismatic duo: Halian, with his broad smile and broader shoulders ; Inola, her beauty even more glowing since the start of her pregnancy. Life was going well and each day was a gift, the birth of an adorable little girl being the brightest of them.
The baby grew up in a charming toddler, and all the villagers agreed that little Siren would grow up to be as beautiful as her mother, if not for the curious little bumps that seemed to be growing on her brow. Halian and his wife paid no mind to the whispers of their neighbors. As long as Siren was happy and healthy, nothing else mattered to them.
As the years passed, unmistakable horns developed on Siren’s head, and so did the spiteful gossip among the villagers. People would see them at the market and whisper. How did Halian manage to always aim true? How strange he was able to track game that eluded all the other hunters… And who knew what secret ingredient Inola added to her remedies to make them so efficient… She was, after all, the mother of a Witch, meaning her blood too carried the taint.
Despite the growing hostility of their neighbors, Siren’s parents were determined to shelter her from any and all harm. The family remained as successful and happy as ever, but that only served to fan the flames of jealousy and hatred.
These sentiments escalated over the years and crystallized when Siren was around 10. Faced with an inexplicably bad harvest, the villagers concluded that surely, all was the fault of the little Witch. Carried by mass hysteria, they quickly decided that for the crops to get better, the wicked child should be drowned and her mother lynched. Halian too would be killed, so that he would not be able to get justice or revenge for his cursed family.
The cowardly neighbors took advantage of one of the tanner’s hunting trips. They assembled in front of the little house, forced its door, and quickly grabbed the terrified mother and daughter. The crowd roared as they pulled their struggling preys towards the nearby river.
Once on the bank, Inola resisted the lecherous grabs of the men, endured the envious strikes of the women, ignored the vile insults of the elders. Despite the rocks that some had begun to hurl at her, she put all her energy in trying to reach her child and save her. But crawling on the ground, her beautiful face matted with blood, she could only watch as the village headman dragged the little girl in the water.
Siren also did her best to struggle, but her frail fists did nothing against her aggressor’s grip. Terrified, she called for her mother even as her face was pushed under the current. Just as her lungs were beginning to fill with water, she felt an impact go through her captor. Taking her chance, she slipped from his failing grasp. Gulping for air, it took her a few seconds to notice the hunting knife protruding from his neck and, further down the river, her father beckoning to her.
Halian was filled with pride as his little girl began progressing towards him, but quickly turned his attention back to the shore. There, only a few villagers had seen what had become of the headman, as most were captivated with tormenting Inola. With shaking hands, the tanner retrieved an arrow. There would not be enough of them to catch each of the offenders but, hopefully, the blood-thirsty crowd would scatter and then, then he would run to his wife and…
As he was taking aim, he met Inola’s gaze. He saw her eyes travel from him to their daughter, now standing almost within arm’s reach from him. A moment ago filled with fear, Inola seemed to come to peace. In her glance, he felt all the love she carried for him and Siren. Then, nothing. A rock had crashed against her temple, putting an end to her ordeal.
Halian released the arrow, aimless. He did not pay attention to where the projectile flew, just gathered a crying Siren in his arms and began running towards the bank opposite to the village. The town folks began hurling stones at them, a few men picking up their own bow to chase after the runaways. The tanner did his best to protect his daughter and kept on running, soon reaching the cover of the woods.
The following hours passed in a blur for the two fugitives. Several times their pursuers gained on them. Arrows flew, but the close-standing trees made it difficult to aim, both for the hunters and their prey. After an entire night of running and hiding, Halian could no longer hear their villagers but still he kept on fleeing deeper in the forest.
It is only when they made camp the next night that Halian turned his attention to the pain in his back. Siren, used to helping her mother tend all kinds of wounds, managed to pull out the arrow. She did her best to gather herbs and tend to her father. But despite her efforts, in just a few days the tanner grew weaker and weaker.
With little rest and close to no food, Siren ended up snuggling against her father and falling into a deep, dreamless sleep. When she came to her senses, it was to the rich smell of soup. Wary, the little girl remained still and cautiously opened her eyes. Their campfire had been rekindled, and a small cauldron had been hanged over it. Stirring its content was a stocky old woman, with bright eyes and gleaming horns. Instinctively reassured, Siren stood up and approached the stranger. The old Witch bestowed a kindly smile and a full bowl of food to the child.
But even with food and care, Halian was beyond recovery. Perhaps he had lost his will to live along with his life, and had only survived to ensure their daughter was safe. For safe Siren was with old Brueja, and the Witch would teach the girl all she knew.
Siren was lucky to be born to parents who surrounded her with love and who tried their best to protect her from the prejudices of others. Had they not been killed, especially in such gruesome circumstances, Siren would have become a totally different person. Brueja, the witch who adopted her, taught Siren how to wisely use the powers she had inherited, but never managed to heal the trauma of her parents’ death and the years of the villagers’ hatred. The fearful, grieving child grew into a misanthropic young woman, that sought revenge on her parents’ assassins and on the world at large.
Witches are not born evil and dangerous, but many in Thasys consider them so, because of the tales that surround the creation of their Lineage. Though the blood that runs through their veins gives them special abilities, it also causes them to grow horns, a veritable target on their head. Marked so, most Witches have no choice but to face mistrust, fear and outright hatred, simply based on their birth.
This sort of struggle is not exclusive to Thasys, and we wanted Siren to be a survivor of such a phenomenon. Made cunning and calculating by the injustice she faced, it would take a lot to make her feel emotions again, especially tender ones. It makes it even stranger, even to her own eyes, that Orin has become so important to her. Maybe the strange love she feels for the Watcher will manage to heal some of her old wounds and open up her heart. But to what effects? Well, that’s another story entirely…
So, how do you think Siren took revenge on her parents’ murderers? And what did Orin do to make her feel something again? Tell us what you think on the Official Forums!