Species: Sea Otter
Age: 8 seasons (about 16 human years)
Description: Sandrose is average height for a young female sea otter, her fur being of a chestnut brown with a lighter tan bib. She wears a grey tunic that is torn and frayed in many places, mostly along the edges. Its color has long faded away and is stained and stiff from the salt of the sea. She has a thin frame, giving her a rather unhealthy appearance, enhanced by her coat which has lost the shine of one that is well groomed and healthy. If one were to get a glance beneath her tunic, they would find her back is littered with whipping scars, though her fur hides most of the damage.
Her most striking feature may be her sea green eyes, but even they appear dull and lifeless having lost the glint of happiness and innocense. Her whiskers constantly droop. One might consider her pretty if she took the time to tidy herself up, however, she has no desire to appeal herself to other beasts and so her fur is kept mussed and unkempt. She can often be found standing to the side of a small group, keeping herself isolated from the others.
Personality: Imagine the worst case scenario of a galley slave. One who's been beaten, abused, and starved to near death. A slave whose spirit has been utterly crushed beneath the paw of their drivers, who at this point only knows how to pull the oar and keep out of sight from others. That's Sandrose. She is incredibly distrustful of beasts and terribly afraid of vermin to the point where if she ever found herself in one's company, she would freeze up in a panic. She isolates herself from others, preferring to keep to herself, and rarely responds to questions or statements unless she is directly spoken to (read: ordered to speak). She has never shaken the slave mentality, and so considered herself perpetually indebted to others, living in constant fear of the lash if she fails in her duties as a slave. If given conflicting orders, she will first fret and panic, then do her best to make it seem as though both jobs get done.
The shirt off her back
Broken shackles attached to her wrists
Strength earned from pulling the oar
A desire to live
Extreme distrust of others, especially vermin
Background: Taken from her home when she was but a mere pup, Sandrose was put on the oar of the Pike's Sword before she could even learn how to speak. She never knew her parents, only the life of a slave, and has grown into a lass with no spirit and no hope of the future.
There is nothing glamorous about the life of a galley slave, and Sandrose was forced to learn quickly the rules of the trade. She was taught to suppress her emotions and learn her place on the ship. Crying where a vermin could see you meant a beating, and insubordination was instant death. She could remember a few times when a fellow slave had snapped or refused to work, watching with the rest as they were sent to reside forever in Gabool's Locker. She learned not to make friends, as she soon found that anyone she got close to disappeared.
The only place of solace she had was in her sleep, where she could escape the beatings and starvation and pain of the real world. Her dreams taunted her, giving her a false taste of freedom, and for seasons she hoped to feel what the real thing was like. But like everything else that kept her spirits high, the taste became bitter and withered away to nothing.
So it was with a surreal feeling when she saw a ship sail close to the Pike’s Sword, followed by the sounds of battle on the deck over their heads. Some of the slaves grew excited. Others, like herself, merely waited for the war to drag itself down to the galley where they would meet their deaths, or perhaps their new masters.
When at last the sounds of battle died away, it was soon replaced by the smell of burning wood. The second ship departed, leaving them behind. The deck collapsed, killing most of the slaves and bringing with it fire and smoke that quickly filled the galley. Somehow, with the weakened state of her bonds, Sandrose managed to break the wood holding her shackles and throw herself from the burning wreckage.
Finding a piece of driftwood to keep her afloat, Sandrose separated herself from the rest of the survivors and floated for days, snatching sleep when she could and diving for food when she was hungry enough. Eventually she spotted land and searching the coast, swam her way up a large river, wanting to go as far inland as possible to avoid another capture by ship. Sand dunes turned to plains which then turned to forest, and eventually Sandrose felt safe enough to leave the river…