Kind and wise in subtle ways, Sorvis is nonetheless a sullen and fierce hunter, driven by an inner fire.
Sorvis, son of Sorval, son of Velhalis of the family Dennae, hails from the spine of the world. A place where the winter’s ferocity scours the land of all but the fiercest survivors. A part of the Canis tribe, Sorvis has known nothing but the bleak and blasted white of snow locked mountains and frosted tundras.
The tribe’s Elders speak of days past when the world was one of color and warmth, but Sorvis had never seen such things. If it wasn’t for the patience and kindness of the elders he would have long since thought such stories purely flights of fancy. But, the elders had taken the time to raise him and train him from a lost tradition, teaching him about strange and alien things that none of the tribe’s living had ever seen. They taught him to read, to write, forcing his education from old tomes nearly lost to time’s decay. They reared him away from the other young boys of the tribe. As such, Sorvis became a quiet and reclusive child, having learned that being different had often made him enemies, often without any effort of his own. Yet, the elders insisted that the Dennae line must continue. Rather than abandon him to the everwinter when his family perished, he was plucked to warmth and safety. Something often resented by those who pay tribute to see the Elders fed.
The Canis are a hard people. Their children die every passage, they survive the onslaught of terrible beasts and deathly storms. So it is natural that this unusual sympathy was met with steely eyes. The elders were not known for doing things without reason, and so the families of Canis suffered this ‘different’ child growing amongst them.
Sorvis learned to fight. But not as traditions of the tribe would teach. He learned to hunt, as all the lads did. Yet the way he moved in battle was markedly different than the fierce rage and brutal style of the tribe. Not to say the young hunter was not born of the savage path..only to say that he moved with a grace and wisdom in any fight that was confusing to those who fought with the spirits of ancestral rage coursing through their veins.
It was during the boys coming of age hunt, that Sorvis first met her. He was 3 days without food, and near exhaustion in his hunt. His prey seemed most elusive, always ahead of him. Drawing him deeper and deeper into the most dangerous range of mountains. Still, he would have this strange beast that left such fierce tracks as his trophy. With this rite of passage, he would win respect and maybe the eye of a potential wife mate. He pushed on. It was there, amidst the wildest refuge of the worldspine’s towering and ragged peaks that he met her. She was cloaked in a whirlwind of shifting snow, her eyes a haunting blue, piercing and bright. Her beauty struck the young man clear to the core of his being.. God touched…but what is a God to a boy who knows only the ancestral spirits of his tribe. In that moment.. it was all of him given to serve, to love, to find her. The wild power of an ocean wrecking upon the coast of his island, he was lost, adrift, floating. He bowed under her gaze, knee pitched into the snow, spear butt grounded. There were no words spoken.. She saw him. She saw his soul. And he dared raise his eyes. She answered with the love of a warrior, and from her leaped the great beast of his hunt. By surprise, but quick, he plunged his great spear forward, meeting the beast through its heart. It’s claw raked mightily, tearing the spear in two, tearing his hides clean, severing flesh, artery, bone and life from the boy.
And the snow was made red by their passion.
The boy did not return.
The tribesmen and tribeswives told different accounts each born of different eyes. But one thing each tale had in common was that Sorvis was returned, unconscious, a terrible scar upon his chest by a beautiful vision, a benevolent spirit, a giant arctic queen, a pack of wild creatures… Each telling shifting.. But always, he was laid at the boundary of the village.. half naked, but warm as fire, even as the howling wind pushed the snow against his prone body. And as the village gathered, superstitious and unsure, waiting whilst the Elders were summoned to determine this omen good or evil, a single tremendous crack of lightening forked up into the sky, leaving in it’s place a crackling rod, a spear, sprung from the earth beside the still unconscious Sorvis. The peel of thunder ringing through the mountains and hills, setting off a chorus of wolf howls for miles.
The elders finally drew the man, Sorvis, into shelter. When he woke, they listened to his tale, that of it he could remember. In turn, they told him of his own arrival and unique return to the village. Finally, after much deliberation, it was decided that Sorvis could no longer stay. They had known his destiny would take him away, and had saved him and groomed him for such. He was to leave the village on a greater hunt… a hunt to seek answers to the riddle of the tribes past and future. He accepted this charge willingly. Though in his heart, he served only one now. And she was a fierce and wild mistress. He had seen in her eyes the enemy. And it may be that this enemy would be the enemy of all, but it mattered not. For his heart was given, and that was his only reason. He was given to the hunt.