Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Come here to play in role playing games, play in AoDs, or show off your latest story creation. This is also the place for fluff questions.

Moderator: Council of Elders

Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Postby LadyLoec » 05 Apr 2016, 14:34

Carmen Duval was the daughter of the Duke of Artois. Her family's close ties to Giles de Breton and the foundation of the kingdom meant they were powerful and well respected even among the nobility. A beautiful only daughter of such a family makes a sought-after bride indeed, and when Carmen reached marriageable age, her father declared that his daughter's hand would be contested in a grand tournament. Carmen - an experienced rider - requested to judge the tournament herself. Her father had doted on her, and indulged her whims in learning to ride and fight as a child, but felt it would be unseemly for a woman to be seen to choose her own husband.

Over one hundred knights competed in over a fortnight of games for the right to marry fair Carmen, in the greatest tournament in living memory (and the peasants rejoiced at such a lengthy respite from their toil!).

Carmen gave her favour to a handsome knight from Aquitaine with gilded armour, though at the end of the contest, one knight stood the clear victor: A black-armoured knight bearing the sigil of the dishonoured realm of Mousillon. He stood taller than any of his competitors, and his face was as scarred as his armour was tarnished. Carmen was distraught that she was to wed a man without lands or standing, and pleaded with her father to reconsider, but he had declared that the winner of the tournament would marry his daughter, and his honour and his word would be forfeit should he renege on his decision.

That night, as Carmen readied her things for her journey to Mousillon and resigned herself to her impending marriage, she heard raised voices from her robing room. It sounded like Eloise, her handmaiden since childhood, who had been packing her dresses for the journey. At that moment, the handsome knight from the tournament burst into the chamber, an excess of wine apparent in the fire in his eyes. He grabbed her by the throat and cast her onto her bed, his intention clearly to claim the prize he felt should have been his. Whilst he began to unfasten his armour, she grabbed the statuette of the Lady at her bedside, and swung it with all her might towards his head. He staggered and fell to the floor, unconscious. Eloise stumbled into the room. She had clearly tried to impede the knight's passage, as she too bore the wounds of a struggle. Eloise bade Carmen to flee the castle, and she tearfully agreed, both of them knowing that Carmen would be disgraced and unmarriageable for having a man in her bedchamber.

Taking the secret passageways she had learned as a child, she fled for the nearby town of Larret. Her sigil of the Lady was worth enough gold to feed half the town, but Carmen was naive and desperate, and traded it for anonymous room and board for a week at the local inn. She spent the remainder of the night weeping by the fireplace, knowing she could never return home.

It was there she caught the eye of Erylis, a handmaiden of the vampire Neferata. Neferata is always seeking beautiful young noblewomen to join her coven, and it did not take long for Erylis to connect the story of the runaway Damoiselle to the beautiful new guest at the inn. She set upon Carmen on the third night of her stay, and took her to the Silver Pinnacle (a journey that would normally take weeks to complete, but Erylis' intimate knowledge of grey magic meant they arrived in mere days).

Carmen was brought before Neferata, who was pleased to add another nobleman's daughter to her bloodline. She offered Carmen the same thing she offers all of her handmaidens - a bargain none had refused in the centuries it had been offered: Eternal beauty, great power, and life everlasting.

To her surprise, Carmen did not accept outright. After all, beauty and power she had known since birth, and they had served her ill. She asked three questions: "Will I be strong?", "Will I be fearsome?" and "Will I be free?". Neferata answered that she would be all of these things, so long as Carmen swore fealty to her. Carmen's face hardened for a moment, and with a nod she bade farewell to her human life. However, she would not enter eternity as the beautiful maiden who had fled her home, and before accepting Neferata's gift, she rendered her visage into one that would no longer stir lust, but instead would inspire terror.

In the years immediately after her disappearance, all of the one hundred competitors who sought her hand were either found dead or mysteriously vanished, with no survivors among their retinues to tell the tale, save one girl child in Brionne, who caught a glimpse of her when her father was killed. The creature the child claimed to see bore no shade of the Damoiselle's fabled beauty; she rode to battle clad in red armour upon a terrifying steed, her cropped hair slicked back with blood, revealing the horror of her scarred and pale face.

It is said that those knights who chose to swear her allegiance were inducted into her personal guard, to live forever in her service as penance for trying to 'win' her. She and her coterie are rumoured to have taken residence in the keep belonging to the black knight from Mousillon, who serves loyally as her faithful Kastellan.

Perhaps this fondness for keeping male servants is why she does not reside with Neferata at the Silver Pinnacle, but she remains loyal. Should Neferata request her aid, she will ride out with a host of ferocious blood knights, ever thankful to the creature who gave her a new life as the Damoiselle of Blood.
LadyLoec
Trusted Bowman
User avatar Trusted Bowman
 
Posts: 110
Joined: 07 May 2014, 19:31
Location: Peterborough

Re: Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Postby Berinhart » 05 Apr 2016, 17:46

Great work! What's it for, background? inspiration? fun?
Berinhart
Newcomer
User avatar Newcomer
 
Posts: 17
Joined: 07 Mar 2016, 22:05

Re: Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Postby LadyLoec » 05 Apr 2016, 19:33

This is the fluff for my lord in a substantial unit of blood knights in my vampires army. I love that unit and it's sheer ferocity, so wanted to come up with some fluff to justify it (there may as well be a giant neon sign saying "DON'T LET THIS UNIT GET INTO COMBAT EVER", so it's not as effective as it should be).

There's a photo of her and her compatriots in this post. I'm a terrible photographer, but to give you an idea, I converted this miniature to ride this horse, swapped the sword for a mace, and added some bits of ripped fabric to make it more undead-y. I also added a gravestone with a bat to the front of the base. One of my favourite projects.
LadyLoec
Trusted Bowman
User avatar Trusted Bowman
 
Posts: 110
Joined: 07 May 2014, 19:31
Location: Peterborough

Re: Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Postby Berinhart » 06 Apr 2016, 18:00

Well, I think the story works well then. Can't wait to see the finished model
Berinhart
Newcomer
User avatar Newcomer
 
Posts: 17
Joined: 07 Mar 2016, 22:05

Re: Carmen Duval - Damoiselle of Blood

Postby LadyLoec » 17 Apr 2016, 17:12

Have uploaded some much better quality pics than my last attempt below - a couple of Carmen on her own, one with her unit, and one with the other lords and heroes from my vampires army - my "four horsemen"
Attachments
P4170067.JPG
P4170063.JPG
P4170065.JPG
P4170066.JPG
LadyLoec
Trusted Bowman
User avatar Trusted Bowman
 
Posts: 110
Joined: 07 May 2014, 19:31
Location: Peterborough


Return to The Grove of Tales

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron