Name: Shana Clearwater
On a normal day, Shana wears a tight black tanktop with matching shorts. White clothes accompany this in the form of a skirt with slits for easy movement, sleeves with lengthy amounts of cloth at the elbows, and boots that nearly reach her knees. Her skin is tanned from many years spent outdoors more often than being inside. A red tattoo on her right shoulder stands out from her low-cut shirt. Her silver shoulder-length hair has a yellow flower on the left side, one that compliments her blue eyes well. She also keeps a black cloak that she covers herself with when relying on stealth, as otherwise her normal attire would stand out too much amongst the shadows.
To people she has just met, Shana does her best to make herself seem unapproachable. She speaks shortly and tends to have more unpleasant rather than encouraging words. But she can only keep this up for so long. When spending time with others, she grows attached to them even if she does not want to, to the point that she would do whatever necessary to help them out. Another tip off to her true feelings is how she reacts when someone is in trouble. Shana usually will go out of her way to help such people, even if she denies after the incident that she was concerned. She does not steal as much as she used to, restricting herself only to people she views as truly vile. Even so, her skills in areas such as pickpocketing and sneaking into locations are above average.
Shana was born unexpectedly early to her traveling mother. The birthing process was done in a small human village she managed to stop at. When her mother died giving birth and the villagers had no idea of who her father was or where he might be, they decided to adopt Shana as one of their own. She was taken in by an older couple that had never had children. For the first twenty years of her life, she grew up loving these people. Then they died of old age, which caused her to go to the next family that was willing to care for her. Their passing occurred when she was seventy-five, and her final adoptive parents were both dead by the time she was one hundred five. Outliving what she considered her family was painful to Shana, and rather than associating herself with anyone else from the village, she quickly left to travel elsewhere.
Originally, Shana wanted to find a new home amongst elves. Since their lifespans would equal hers, she felt it was the only way to make connections without suffering from losing them. Shana traveled for a few years while making the money she needed to continue by stealing from wealthy individuals. Her choice to commit crimes like this were done for a couple of reasons. One was that from how she was raised, she never got a chance to learn about jobs she could reasonably hold while journeying. Another was that by viewing other people as nothing more than marks, she had no chance to get attached to them. She could not bring herself to steal from people who were poor or in desperate need of their funds, but she did not restrict herself anywhere else.
One such person she tried to steal from was a traveler in a forest she went through. Shana was caught in the attempt, but was more startled to find he was a fellow elf. When she told him she was looking for other elves to live with, he considered her request before saying he knew of such a location. If she proved herself to be a good person, he would take her there. He introduced himself as Jerod and offered to let her travel with him as he analyzed her actions. Though Shana was not fond of Jerod, this was the closest she had come to realizing her goal. She reluctantly agreed to his proposal.
The two of them traveled together for a year. In this time, Shana grew to care for her partner. She showed herself to be a loyal companion in spite of them getting into arguments several times. They looked out for each other, and in the end, Jerod said he felt she had more than shown him to be worth helping. By this point, she was not so eager to find a location with only elves, having gotten attached to Jerod enough so as to ease her loneliness. In the end, they admitted having feelings for each other and decided to continue their adventuring. They planned on being wed back at the town that was nearest to where they first met and traveled back toward it.
It was on the way there that the duo got attacked by a group of assailants. Whether they were bandits or after something else, Shana was not sure. In the chaos of the fight, Shana had a knife shoved through her shoulder and wound up falling over the side of a cliff. Though foliage broke her fall for a good portion of the plummet, she was severely wounded by it. It took her a long time to get back to where they had been. When she arrived, all she found was a spot in the road severely stained with blood. It hit her then that even with those who had similar lifespans naturally could be taken through other means.
Determined not to get attached to anyone else again, Shana went back to her old way of living. She used some of the funds she had acquired legitimately with Jerod to cover the scar on her shoulder with a tattoo, which was shaped like the symbol he had planned on getting carved into a wedding ring for her. It was the only thing she let herself have to remember him by. Ever since, she has tried to keep her distance from other people. This has been difficult for her, since when traveling with Jerod, she had become accustomed to helping other people. The loneliness she felt did not help matters either. But the thought of losing another loved one has made it hard for her to open to those she meets. Roleplay Sample:
"Are you sure about this? It's not going to be a pleasant experience."
Selena resisted the urge to roll her eyes, but only just. What was it about people so often saying what was incredibly obvious? Though her expression was kept flat, her words had biting sarcasm to them. "I never would have guessed. Needles making permanent designs on your skin actually hurt? What a shock."
The tattooist, a human male who was alone in his small and brightly lit shop, held up his arms in a helpless shrug. "Hey, I'm just making sure."
Shana laid back in the chair and closed her eyes, signalling an end to the discussion. "I already showed you I have the money for this. Just hurry up and do it."
She heard the man sigh. "Okay then. Stay still while I do this. If you move suddenly, I might mess up the design."
But Shana did not get a chance to vocalize that remark. The first spike of pain from her shoulder caused her to clench her teeth together, cancelling out any words she would have shared. No duh.
If nothing else, the tattooist had been honest. It was not so much that each needle pierce hurt severely. Rather, the amount of times it entered her skin was the worst part of the procedure, along with the prolonged pain from wherever it entered. Years ago, Shana would have lost her nerve after the first few minutes. She would have said to forget this. Even if it meant swallowing her pride after all her bravado, it would have been better than having to sit there, fighting the urge to squirm away from the man's hands and the tool of torture he held.
But not now. This was too important for her to back out of.
It was the first time she had let his name come to her mind in the past few days. It still hurt her to think of him. The pain from picturing him in her mind was enough to completely drown out the fiery sensation in her shoulder. She dimly felt the corners of her eyes sting. It took all of her willpower to stop tears from escaping them. There was no way she wanted the tattooist to think she was so weak that she would cry from his needle. Not after her earlier bravado. Not from a stranger who had no idea what she was upset about.
But I miss him so much.
There was no way she could forget about Jerod. Just like the many parents she had lived with, he was now a part of her. The problem was that part of her would never be one she could touch again. All that was left was the phantasm in her mind. That, and the one physical mark she planned on having. She did not want her memories of Jerod to be tied to an ugly scar on her shoulder. No, she wanted something more meaningful, something that he would have smiled at seeing her do. That was why she was here.
"Hey, you didn't do half bad!"
Shana's eyes flew open at the man's words. Seeing her confused look, he clarified, "We're all done. Here, tell me what you think." He held out a mirror for her to gingerly lift.
By positioning the small mirror carefully, she got a clear reflection of the tattoo. The scar that had once been blatant on her shoulder was now concealed by red ink. The leaf curled around the curve of her shoulder and upper arm in a weightless embrace. Jerod had never told her exactly what the symbol meant. His intention had been to explain it when he gave her the ring that would have it carved into its face. Her wedding ring, which she would never have, just as she had never had a wedding. She had kept the paper with the symbol for the purpose of showing the tattooist, and had thought she would burn it after. Now she was not so sure about getting rid of that last scrap of paper from her fiancé.
Her head snapped up at the tattooist's impatient remark. Keeping her expression neutral, she responded with a shrug similar to the one he had given her early. Shana instantly regretted it as painful pinpricks resulted from the movement. Even with that, she managed to respond in a voice that gave nothing away. "It'll do."
The man sighed. "Glad you like it." Though his voice was unconvincing, he lit up at seeing Shana produce more gold than the procedure had called for. He sounded far more pleasant as he accepted the tip and said, "Thank you for your business."
As Shana left the shop, she craned her neck to see the mark again. It was still there, and if the tattooist was to be believed, it would never fade. That was how she wanted it. She did not want her memory of Jerod to vanish as time went on. He would be kept close to her heart, even if she never let anyone near it again.