Bette Rosso and Markov Rosso are twins who found a niche in the region early on in life. Since a young age they have been fighting, and not just arguments, the Rosso children solved their disputes with intense displays of violence. As children their scraps were serious but their effects were minimal. As they became teenagers the damage they could cause to a location became extensive. Chairs and tables broken with the random bodies weren’t free, they cost the family a great deal of coin. After a bad one that had cleared a tavern of all furniture Papa Rosso brought the siblings to a pit fight to attempt to make the money needed. It had been his intention to scare them straight while earning some money through a bet. While they watched their first pit fight one of the fighters lost an eye. The gory move put a stop to the fight, their father lost everything he had been betting. When thugs came to collect the two of them worked together and they were able to distribute a severe and costly beating to the would-be muggers. When the underworld boss came to them with his bruised underlings and a few fresher faces he was pleasantly surprised by the grit of the youngsters who again beat the underlings and his new hires.
So he offered them a job. The Rossos entered the next fight to pay for their father’s debt and fought against dogs, teams of thugs, and even each other, although the fights were designed to kill them they survived and even became famous for their flippant dismissal of the criminal’s attempts. Their fight against each other was legendary, they knew how far to push each other and their skill was so evenly matched that the fight would be long and bloody. With so many admirers the twins decided that fighting for the money was better than fighting for their lives and turned their pitiless hobby into a career. Because they are still young they don’t hold back and throw themselves into every fight, after which Papa Rosso brings them to the tavern to nurse their wounds and lighten the massive loads of cash they had earned. The Rossos are favorites among the fighting scene but when it comes to protecting the town their father keeps them restrained, holding them back from battles with monsters lest they become injured and lose the power to earn. As an outlet Markov and Bette both teach their skills to others in the village, sparring with new partners helping them to become better fighters as the excuse for Papa while they sneak out to have their adventures.
After a short lifetime of being dirt poor the Rosso family has become a little heady with their newfound coin, having paid off the boss that first night they were soon thereafter so wealthy the family could afford to live entirely on the many tavern’s hospitalities. While Papa Rosso spends lavishly on himself he is not so foolish as to let the two question why he should have any at all and encourages them to indulge in simple things such as the physical pleasures that their adoring fans were throwing their way unbidden and a tavern’s most famous offering: drinks. The twins tried it all but discovered they enjoy the strongest of drinks, the Dragon’s Breath, a taste acquired after Bette’s brutal victory over Markov when the family had a post-fight drinking contest. Dragon’s Breath’s fiery burn was an endurance challenge and the state it left them in had them enjoying more and more of the tavern’s luxuries, including the vast number of opportunities to pounce upon any passerby that might catch their all-inclusive fancies.
Marcus Quorio of the low-land Quorios is a beast of a man. During his youth his frame was pushed to the limits with stocking large sacks and barrels of goods on shelves and into carts. Many times he was the only one available for the job as most of his family line to be slight of frame and bad of back. His father Antonio, also a traveling merchant, had an affair with a young woman in the nearby village of Raven’s Hollow when he would travel to purchase fresh herbs and supplies from the witches. On one of his return visits, he learned that the woman had died in childbirth and that one of the witches, her sister, would raise the child. Antonio knew that his own wife would not be happy, but felt the responsibility to take the boy home instead and raise Marcus with his own children. Needless to say Marcus was not his new mother’s favorite at first, but Endalesse was kind enough to punish Antonio, not Marcus. Antonio was eventually too old to travel, mostly busy at the local store or kept at home by Endelesse while the growing children would work as they could. Antonio worried about keeping his supply routes as many villages depended on his goods and trade, so Marcus volunteered to take up his father’s routes as he was the best equipped for carrying the goods and strong enough to handle himself in a fight. Over the years, Endelesse grew to love Marcus and loved him as her own.
On his third journey out, Marcus traveled to Raven’s Hollow to retrieve a special order of healing potions for the local Adventurers Guild. When meeting with the witches, he learned of his mother, a sick woman who had come from the Greywood and who had loved his father during many of the trips he had come to visit. She had been sweet and quiet and rarely spoke of herself or her home, but what they did say was that she had come here looking for a better life and had taken a nasty turn on the way. The witches of the village were not able to stem the curse that weakened her, nor were they able to heal her when she died in child birth. His father was commended by them all for his compassion in taking Marcus home, the whole of the village was more than happy to see how he had grown in his care. For years he would return and see whom he would come to feel was his second family. It was more than that, they were teachers too. Marcus had no magical aptitude but a great love for turning a deal and armed with the knowledge of their every use the herbs, tonics, and potions he returned home with flew off the shelves.
Marcus grew older with each passing year, enjoying the success that his prowess afforded him, but he was malcontent. He wanted to break the tidal lock on his path, wanted to bring his wares to new places and maybe even find someone to spend his life with. All of which he felt would happen if he were free. He left his family in the care of his younger half-brother and three sisters who were already well-versed in the trade and managing the family store with great success. Marcus loaded up a cart of their finest wares and left for adventure. As time passed he sold the cart and his wares and began to carry the promissory notes from suppliers to prospective towns. Now he’s come to Redstaff and found a surprising thirst for the new. In this strange crossroads the traveling merchant can find countless opportunities to arrange contacts and arrange supply lines for a surprisingly wide reach. For Marcus this is a golden opportunity, a chance to fill out his frame with comfort, and he is always on the lookout for adventure.
Anyone can tell you that farming is a difficult task. Adding to that mix the attraction of malicious, murderous, monstrous beings to any number of things, including crops, familiar members, magic or lack thereof, and those strangers passing through and the average farmer has seen a great deal. Stedman Goodwind is an unmarried but prosperous farmer who spent a great deal of his younger years in taverns talking to all manner of folk who would pass through and learning their secrets. As more and more strangers such as students from the Wizard’s Academy would arrive at the docks, Stedman made it his business to be there to greet them and sometimes offer them a job. With each scrap of knowledge or hint of suggestion Stedman found ways to keep his property safe from the surrounding madness of the forest. Now the Goodwind farm is a solid producing force for the village, it’s often his pumpkins that become the festival cider and his grain that makes so much of the bread for sale in the village.
While he had ample opportunity to squeeze his fellow villagers for the extra odd coin he chose instead to pay and ask for fair trade. That which he did not sell was donated to the poor for charity or to local merry-making. Such a protected farm provides many opportunities for others to find work, and Stedman is happy to receive most since he enjoys the protection of the local Thieves’ Guild. The secret alliance is open but never openly discussed, and was only once ever once mentioned before . A friend was worried for him and began to speak out at the taverns he frequented, but when the Guild caught wind of it, the friend disappeared. After susupicions arose as to the man’s fate, Stedman would reply that he had moved for health reasons and was now living comfortably in a nearby town. While many wished to believe him, there still remain a few with doubts, and this fear suppressed even the Alderman and the guards curiosity.
Goodwind Farm supplies both employment and abundance, as such Stedman finds himself resting up in taverns more and more these days. His love of the job keeps him working when he doesn’t need to and the extra works puts enough coin in his pocket for the finest foods that he doesn’t have to cook. With his success still recent and growing Stedman has yet to swell in his needs and tastes, preferring only that food and drink be available. He makes for an easy patron and for the travelers that pass through he is a piece of the authentic spirit of Redstaff. To them he is a reminder that this place was built on inner riches and that fortune can still be had by those with the ingenuity to manifest it. Or so he would like to believe.