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AGE: 63
PLAYER: shelbalebs
ABOUT: Lord of Winterfell and the "Old Wolf" of the Stark pack, Rickard is as hard and cold as they come. Only for his family does he soften his icy edges, but while he is not a man of many friends, he keeps his allies close and values hard work above a wealthy coin purse.
Joined: 7-February 15
Status: (Offline)
Last Seen: Dec 16 2015, 12:00 AM
Local Time: Jul 19 2018, 08:31 PM
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Jun 3 2015, 09:31 PM
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<div style="width: 280px; font-family: 'Mrs Saint Delafield', cursive; font-size: 30px; color: #000000; line-height: 90%; letter-spacing: 1px;">Harrion Karstark,</div>
Whether or not your lord father has spoken with you of these matters is of no concern to me. While I presume he has, of course, our necessary correspondence has come to an end and it was time I sent you this raven personally. Apologies if it bites.
I would have you travel to Winterfell now as soon as you are prepared, with an entourage of your own appointing. I suggest it be one impressive enough, young lord, as it will not only be myself that awaits your arrival.
About the raven. Keep it, I beg you. Perhaps tie a twine around its beak, something my maester has been preventing me from doing since I first suggested the notion.
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R. Stark of Winterfell</div>

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May 25 2015, 05:29 AM

"A storm looks to be coming, sire," piped his squire, a young Hornwood boy whose loathe to leave Lannisport still soured the Warden. Lifting his grey eyes to the equally grey sky, Rickard felt his brows pull together in thought. "A blizzard, more like," he intoned, noting the winds that were beginning to loudly rustle the canopies of the trees surrounding them. He and his retinue had been ahorse for nearly a fortnight, having taken to saddle once departing the ship on Fever River. Having ridden past Moat Cailin to reach the Kingsroad, he supposed they would reach Winterfell without too many delays. Alas, the darkening sky above and its thick swath of clouds seemed to prove otherwise. "Winterfell is just a few more leagues," said his squire again, this time not rendering an immediate response from his liege. As the chilled wind blew between them, Rickard flexed his jaw in thought. Had Meliana reached the manse?

"Ride ahead," he suddenly spoke up, looking to his squire that rode on a bay-colored palfrey beside him. "Not all of us can beat the storm, but you may. Tell Brandon of the delays." Rickard did not bother sparing the boy any longer of a look, and did not notice if he hesitated before finally spurring his horse into a gallop. Left only with his handful of guards, he watched as his squire shrunk further and further in the distance, until finally, a snow-dotted slope swallowed any sight of him. He could smell the blizzard in the air already, the winds heavier and angrier with every gust. Decked in his full mantles of leather and fur, Rickard and his entourage rode as quickly as they could, and he lead the group of them at their helm in a steady canter.

He knew they would not make it to Winterfell before the blizzard reached them. But, if they were lucky, they could reach the manse he sheltered Meliana in. For all his children and grandchildren knew, he and his men would be caught in the storm in untold whereabouts, leaving the Lord of Winterfell to his pleasures for as long as the weather deemed fit. Not worried for the discretion of his own guards, Rickard found himself tapping his spurred heels into the sides of his smoke-colored steed, his men riding three abreast at times where the Kingsroad allowed it. With the household staff he'd implanted for Meliana, he had no doubt they would be fed easily enough, and he only hoped there was enough wine in the manse's stores that would provide their sudden arrival. He knew they would need a fair distraction while their liege disappeared elsewhere...

It was well over an hour by the time they finally reached the dwellings, the manse itself surrounded by a few acres of marked and workable land. Land that already was beginning to disappear beneath blankets of hard-falling snow. He could see the yellow torchlights illuminating the home within, and ignored the exhausted pants of his horse as they loped up to the two-storied estate. After taking a bit of time to stall their horses in the neighboring stables, Rickard and his men worked quickly through the snow-covered ground and onto the encircling wooden porch of the manse. The wind was fierce and it tunneled into them as they struggled their way through the doors, but by the time they finally had it closed behind them, drifts of snow had been let in at their feet and clung to their fur mantles.

None of that mattered to him, though, once Meliana finally appeared. "My lady," he greeted deeply, almost as if in relief as she neared. Gods, she was beautiful. Servants had already come to assist his men with disrobing their more heavier and dirtier garments, and taking his paramour's arm, Rickard stepped just a bit off to the side with her. "Forgive my sudden appearance," he offered, hiding a smirk. "Though now that I am here..." turning his head to look at his guards, he watched as they were led off into the adjoining dining hall. He took the moment to take a step closer to his paramour, filling his nostrils with her aromas with every silent breath. "I do not think this storm is so bad after all."

Feb 8 2015, 02:39 PM

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<div class="infocat"><b> NICKNAMES: </b>Rico Suavé <3</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> RANK: </b>Nobility</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> TITLE: </b>Lord of Winterfell</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> AGE: </b> 63</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> REGION: </b>The North</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> HOUSE: </b>House Stark</div>
<div class="infocat"><b> PLAYBY: </b> Aiden Shaw</div>

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<center><font face=times new roman><font size=5>WOLF PUP</center></font></font>
These hands... cold, strong hands. They have seen so much, have done so much hard work... no one south of Moat Cailin would have the slightest idea. Their hands smell of flowers and perfume and fruit I myself have only tasted a few times in my snowy life. They smell like Summer. Weak and easy, fertile Summer. No one likes that kind of smell where I'm from, not even if we pretend to ignore it whenever a southron comes prancing about. It churns our guts and makes our icy veins run hot. They know nothing. Nothing of hard work, of hunger, of frozen beards and icicles coming from your nostrils. I've seen winter, true winter, winter so cold a man's laughter freezes in his throat. Winter so cold a man's mind and sanity freezes inside his own skull.
But that is why men like the Starks, like the Umbers and even those bastard-crazy Boltons remain. When winter has come and gone, we remain. Even our summers consist of light snowfall and blizzards, ice patches to keep horses from, miles of snow to hunt through. I watched and helped my father Edwyle Stark fill our harvest cabins every Fall, our wood closets with chopped trunks from the wolfswood, and our ice basements with elk, moose and deer meat. Even then, sometimes it was feared not to be enough... and when the snows would hold us hostage within my own home of Winterfell, only the books of my ancestors could keep me distracted from the hungry rumble in my gut. It was during the long, long long months (even years) of winter was I forced into my studies... for by the old gods, I would leave the spring-fed keep as soon as the snows melted enough and the doors could be opened. Everyone in Winterfell had instructions to keep an eye out for "the little wolf pup," knowing breaking my own leash was only daily routine of mine.
They called me "pup" all throughout my childhood. Even as I watched my father behead deserters of the Night's Watch, watched him shoot an arrow into the chest of a wildling, I was always told to "never blink, pup." Even as the warm blood would melt into the snow and travel to my boots, I stared unblinkingly at it all. Even as I was caught in my own rooms with chambermaids, my father would say, "Stupid pup, only following his nose to the rumps of little bitches." Though I was his only son, I remained a pup until the old brute breathed his last breath, half-snarling and all. I refused to allow his Valyrian greatsword Ice be buried with him, knowing it was my father's cold idea of a lesson that wanted it taken to his grave in the crypts far below Winterfell. "He will have what every Stark before him has had," I had told them, "his statue, his stone sword on his lap, and his wolves at his feet."
<center><font face=times new roman><font size=5>THE ALPHA</center></font></font>
I am not sure if I ever grieved my father Edwyle. Why, I wasn't sure... he had taught me everything my hands knew how to do, had taught me my very principles to live by, but perhaps it was just the cold of our North that had frozen any tears long before they formed. While my mother cried upon my hard shoulder, I stood as straight-faced and perhaps as icy as Winterfell. For this, and for my refusal to grant my father one of his many death wishes, they began to call me "The Stubborn Wolf." At least I wasn't a pup anymore. What my father did was simply be my father. He did little else for me. Did not wake me up in the mornings to break my fast, did not chop the wood in my own chamber fireplace, did not even season my meat like he would season his own. Not to mention he never bothered in finding a wife for me, unlike every other of our bannermen were doing for their sons. If I did not wake early enough on my own, I did not eat. If I did not chop my own wood for my fireplace, I slept cold. If I wanted my meat seasoned, I would have to learn how... and if I wanted a wife, I would have to wait to find myself one. Even wanting our family's greatsword Ice buried with him was likely his idea of never making decisions for me, never handing me anything than what was already mine to inherit. Perhaps he had simply forgotten Ice was mine to inherit, also.
I wielded that blade better than him, I must say. I was taller than him, too, so it looked even better when sheathed across my back. Not to say I'm a man of vanity, I'd rather split my fist on a mirror than see my face in it, but does not every man aspire to be greater than their predecessor? I think it was my father himself to teach me that. He had raised me just as the cold raises us all; hard, unforgiving, even bitter. Though I admired and thanked him for that, I never forgave him. Winter does not forgive anyone.
Much like my new bannermen were slow to forgive any short-handed mistakes I made as their new liege. It was not only the weight of Ice on my back, but the titles of Warden of the North and Lord of Winterfell, as well... and I can admit that I made mistakes. Trusted some wrong few at first. Not to say I made any like letting a wildling king-in-disguise over my walls, but I was still young. Thank the gods for Maester Flowers. Were it not for him, I would have let poison be whispered into my ears until it led to my demise... I would have kept inviting whores to my bed and would have kept anyone who was not a Northmen closed out from my gates. I would have the wrong comrades, and all too few of the right ones, and Winterfell would be alienated. My egotistical youth was nearly my downfall, had it not been for Maester Flowers. It was that good, seasoned man that opened my eyes to perhaps things I to this day do not exactly want to see... but know I have to embrace.
<p><center><font face=times new roman><font size=5>RITE OF WOLVES</center></font></font>
House Stark had suffered almost unspeakable losses within the recent years, the same losses that had led to my unlikely ascension as Lord of Winterfell. My uncles had all died in a war, had died avenging each other or had simply disappeared in their wanderings. My men were finally beginning to respect me, and though some still disagreed with me (namely those Bolton madmen,) putting a wife at my side was the very thing the North needed. But where my House had once been strong and large in its numbers, now it was whittled and small and nearly depressing. Winterfell needed to besolid again. Winter was coming, after all, and it would not find me cold, shivering and alone. Not even my insufferable father Edwyle had been alone... somehow, my mother loved him. His men followed him with their eyes closed. I swore I would inherit all of that, as well.
Lyarra was a daughter of my great-uncle Lord Rodrik, the youngest of my grandfather William's brothers. She and her sister had fostered in the Vale for much of their childhood, but upon their return, it was she who I decided to marry. She was a Stark in her own right, fierce and embodied by the North. Winterfell had fallen to near disparity with the wide losses of our House and I sought to revive them with her by my side. After the mourning of our family members and even the mourning of my father, I made her my wife within the following year. Duty came fast.
And perhaps faster than I could be ready for. The War of the Ninepenny Kings, gods damn those Blackfyre fools, was what truly, finally froze me into my place as Lord of Winterfell. Yes, I was a Stark, my father's only son, only child, but even Starks have to prove themselves. Especially Starks, and especially all those who once took the very mantle I did. A man of my youth could not imagine the excitement that all brought me, seeing my dozens of thousands of men at my command, of my bannermen and their knights all ready to fight for me and the Seven Kingdoms. Imagine how the Kings of Winter felt. Every one of us, all the wardens of the realms were set into motion alongside each other... never have I seen such a magnificent thing in my life. So many men, so, so many, I did not think it possible. But bloody paths were cut, ranks were shortened, even dissipated, and the war was won. Maelys the Monstrous slain in single combat. Turning home, victorious, most of my Northmen still alive and following, I was finally Lord Stark of Winterfell. "The Stubborn Wolf."
<center><font face=times new roman><font size=5>PROMISE FOR WAR</center></font></font>
....And so, the years started coming. First it was Brandon, my heir, my handsome squalling little heir. If Winterfell was not already strong, it certainly was even stronger with the boy's arrival. In between the births of my next son Eddard, my daughter Lyanna and my youngest boy Benjen, I played my inherited role. I beheaded deserters of the Night's Watch with the very blade I'd seen my father use, I killed wildlings that somehow got over the Wall and into my wolfswood, I hung bandits and outlaws, or sent them to the Red Keep if I felt merciful enough. I helped crush rebellions against my King. I welcomed in any straggler or visitor on the King's Road, fed them at my tables, sheltered them beneath my roofs. I taught my growing family not ways of adulthood, but survival. (I left our new Maester Luwin up to teaching them the ways of books and words.) I loved my wife as much as my frosty Northern heart possibly could, forged alliances even greater than a king, and though there were a few times my bannermen still cursed me for my blunt truths and sharp tongue, I built my life with these hands... cold, strong hands.
Of course, it could never end there. The alliances I forged were soon tested and emboldened at the Tourney at Harrenhal, where I pledged both my life and unexpectedly my only daughter to the dismantling of the Mad King. What could I have done? Though I had my comrades and allies by my side, Lannister and Tully, Arryn and Whent, I had just admitted treason. We all had. Rhaegar himself could have had our heads that very night if he'd wished... but I trusted him. I trusted him enough to agree to allow him the hand of my daughter Lyanna and made him promise to take her as far away from the war as possible. Tywin Lannister helped the broken matches between our alliances by bringing young Robert Baratheon into the fold with the betrothal of his daughter Cersei to the young stag and his armies. Though it was not all what we had initially planned, it would have to work.
And work it did. It was greater than all the forces we had summoned to face Maelys upon the Stepstones decades before. War of the Seven, they called it, and rightfully so. The whole of the realms either came together or clashed against each other, and it was the very war we promised to bring to Rhaegar's father the Mad King in retaliation for his affronting descent into insanity. The Sack of King's Landing was not without its bloodshed, and though it was not Northern swords to see the end of King Aerys, I had been happy to send my men home with word of victory upon their lips.
<center><font face=times new roman><font size=5>A COMING WINTER</center></font></font>
I remained within the city only long enough to see Rhaegar return with my daughter at his side. I did what I could to discern myself from the matters concerning his other wife and children, for I could not dare doubt him now -- not after swearing to him my word and my own daughter's hand in marriage. When it came to be that Lyanna would be the only Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, I had never felt such sheer pride and raw fear at once before. I had no choice but to leave her there after the wedding, returning to Winterfell with my wife and sons at my side.
It would be months until I saw her again, making the unlikely journey all the way to Lannisport to meet her there during one of her many royal progresses. Alongside each other we sailed to the Iron Islands to retrieve her stolen lady-in-waiting, and we left hardly speaking to one another. She had toyed with her crown and had undermined my own position as her husband's Warden of the North, and we both left the islands as empty-handed as we'd come. Though her travels found the royal family at Winterfell shortly after, I have no doubt were it not for the wedding of her brother Brandon to Catelyn Tully, Lyanna would have never come.
Her mother was with child, too, amazingly. I had left my pregnant wife to assist in a fruitless mission for the crown and came back bitter for the girl who had grown from my daughter into the woman upon the Iron Throne. Alas, I could not help but want to see her again once my twin grandsons were born, and there was little she could do to stop me once she finally introduced them to their grandfather. When they at last departed for King's Landing, I turned to my own family. Brandon would have children himself, no doubt, and even Eddard would soon get his way with Lady Wylla's hand in marriage. It was nearly hard to believe that, barely twenty years before, our great castle had been almost empty, so many Starks dead that we had neared extinction with a single misstep of a generation. But now... now we were about to burst past the unpassable limits of Winterfell.
Starting with the birth of my miracle child and sweet daughter Elinor. I had not thought her conception would be possible, but I had promised her to her mother anyway before the war, and I returned with it still in mind. Somehow, the old gods had listened and she was born but a few short months after Lyanna and Rhaegar returned to King's Landing with the new twins. She was beautiful and perfect, and she was followed by Brandon's first child Sansa and then Eddard's first son Robb, and it seemed with every year or two, another grandchild of mine was born in alternating turns between my two sons. It was all I could have ever wanted, now that I knew all of the hardships of the first few decades of my rule were done and over with.
Dragons and wolves, though, changed a bit of our coming history. My daughter Lyanna has had one by her side for years, now, and her daughter and my grandchild Rhaenna, as well, calls a young direwolf her companion. My other grandchildren in King's Landing ride dragons and it is all my old and cold heart can do to keep from stopping in bewilderment. I try and not think too much on it, what it all means, and try and have another barn built for the direwolves that have found my other daughter Elinor and my other grandchildren here in Winterfell. All I can do is remind them that winter is coming, and it is coming full force for House Stark.

<td><div class="infocat"><b> PLAYER: </b> shelbs</div></td>
<td><div class="infocat"><b> YOUR AGE: </b> 22</div></td>
<td><div class="infocat"><b> EXPERIENCE: </b> 10 years </div></td>
<td><div class="infocat"><b> LOCATION: </b> texas</div></td>

<div style="width:280px;"><div class="vert"><div class="north"> RICKARD BERON STARK</div></div>

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