Princess Sophie Valardin
When we care, we strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.
Description: Rarely lives a person whose very being makes one feel better, lighter, like the world can be a decent place. Princess Sophie Valardin's fresh face is a balm to the soul of many of those in her care, her kind smile an elixir of gentle reprieve from the ills of the world. Her golden blonde hair, often kept in an elegant, yet no-nonsense braid, shimmers gently in sunlight or candlelight. Her warm blue eyes, perfectly matching a summer sky, hold a wealth of compassion in them, allowing one to be lost in the peace of their depths. She is beautiful, as so many are, but she is the beauty of a whole, rather than the sum of attractive pieces. When she moves, it is with the surest confidence, each motion a prayer, a comfort to those around her. Hers is not a striking beauty, but one of purity, of the spirit of hope itself.
Personality: Many mistake compassion and mercy as weakness, a sign that someone can be readily taken advantage of. Many have not met Princess Sophie Valardin, Mercy of Lagoma. She feels drawn to being a light in the darkness, a beacon of hope in a cruelly indifferent world. She cares deeply about people, regardless of station, fealty, or title, dedicating her life to the well-being of strangers. Her high station is no barrier to her willingness to get her hands dirty to help others, viewing her high birth as a useful tool to aid those who need it, and feeling a bone-deep obligation to those beneath her. Her station makes her entirely too accustomed to being obeyed and taken seriously, which is a pronounced advantage when dealing with those who might take advantage of anyone in her care, but can leave the young woman overstepping her bounds or failing to show the proper respect to the entrenched dignitaries of Arx when it comes to matters about which she feels most passionate. A flaw which she knows can cost her much needed support in the service of Lagoma. Those who know her best are aware that she has a slightly cheeky sense of humor and a propensity for ribald innuendo. Whenever this aspect of her personality surprises others, it conjures in her a good-natured amusement. Not all Oathlanders are stuffy, after all.
Background: House Valardin of all the great houses has the greatest representation among clergy in the Faith of the Pantheon, so it comes as no surprise when a prince or princess of the Oathlands feels drawn towards the Faith. However Princess Sophie surprised her parents and siblings not just by being devout, but by the much rarer choice of feeling called to serve as a disciple of a specific goddess, announcing even as a teenager that she intended to become a Mercy of Lagoma. Her decision was driven by the first time she saw the aftermath of a battle, as a young niece of Prince Radley accompanying the high lord to inspect a skirmish against shavs, and she witnessed white robed members of the Faith giving care to not only the soldiers of House Valardin who were wounded, but even to the dying shav enemies who had been left lying upon the field. The agony of the dying tore at her soul, and she'll never forget the humanizing compassion in each of the Mercies of Lagoma's actions. She remembers a pair of Mercies struggling fiercely to save the life of a desperately wounded shav, and she remembers so very keenly that courageous members of the Faith refused to allow stricken enemies to be massacred by vengeful Valardin knights and faced their swords until Prince Radley told the knights to stand down. Sophie saw a sort of courage in those unarmed healers that resonated with her, and her mind was made up from that moment on.
As a very young adult, after extensive training as a Mercy in Blancbier, she traveled to Arx to study with the Faith. She might one day become godsworn, and give up her family and potential titles and become sworn only to the gods and the crown, but not yet. She knows how powerful the Valardin name is, and she knows she is in a unique position to be the one to speak for the defenseless, the sick and the injured. She knows full well that she could be the one woman in white whose voice can be heard by the truly powerful, and she feels she owes it to Lagoma and to the defenseless to be the one to speak it. Princess Sophie is a Mercy of Lagoma, and she intends to leave the world in a better place than she found it.
As of the summer of 1006 AR, following the still unsolved murder of her predecessor, she ascended to the position of Mother Mercy of Arx. So far, her tenure has seen to the development and implementation of the Harrowed Heart initiative, which treats post-traumatic stress. Improving the lives and the care of the denizens of the Lower Boroughs and the refugees in Arx continues to very much be a keystone of her service to Our Lady of Change.
|Alaric||The Mother of Mercy seems to be on a neverending mission to remove every trace of disease, injury, and misery from Arx that she can. Not the least of included tending to me after I was recovered from the Exsilium Noctis, for which I will be forever grateful. It does seem she risks wearing herself out by working so much, so I hope that she reins it in when appropriate.|
|Arcelia||A kind seeming woman, she helped someone who was fairly ill. I hope to see her again outside of a crisis situation.|
|Armand||The Mother Mercy was the one that encouraged us to row, and she did well for as long as the treacherous sea allowed her. Her prayer to Mangata was inspiring, and I look forward to meeting her again. On solid soil.|
|Arn||One of the good ones. For the most part. Probably the least disappointing one of the bunch.|
|Bianca||My sweet, sweet cousin and one of the few that no matter the occasion I am compelled to embrace. While we have been distant in the recent years I hope that your light will more fully return to my company as it was in our youth. I must take measures to insure this is so.|
|Edain||Princess Sophie, I'd be lost without her. She is like Alis in that she is smarter than I will ever be, and the fact that she believes in my is at once humbling, and empowering. She carries with her the great pain of the Tragedy of Sanctum as we all do, but she is always so vibrant, and compassionate that you'd never know it. She also has a thirst for knowledge that is truly humbling and her ability to dig into our deepest past, and the mysteries of the realm are something I am deeply in her debt for. I hope I can help her find some happiness, as she spends so much of her life dedicated to others.|
|Eirlys||Sweet, kind and caring. She cares for the injured not just humans but animals as well. Truly a bright soul.|
|Fatima||The Mother Mercy is wise as she is beautiful. Sweet as she is intelligent, and stern as she is warm. All qualities I admire in a woman, and I sense we will meet again. To discuss matters of religion, can't let her shit on my Reflections.|
|Ferrando||If Princess Sophie isn't the most visible Mercy of Lagoma in Arx, I have no idea who is! She's very dedicated and always seems to be working on something or other, which is good to see. Although as a general rule I try not to see Mercies of Lagoma too often because it usually means something unhealthy has happened to you.|
|Fiachra||A brilliant ray of hope and light in this world, and I hope that nothing ever dims it. I will forever appreciate that she came to my aid to help a tiny, injured and infected kitten that I had found on the streets of Arx.|
|Godric||The Mother Mercy is all right. I prefer a less protective and coddling brand of medicine but hers works too.|
|Katarina||Mother of Mercies, and now a cousin. Sophie and Katarina are often like two ships on mirrored seas, slipping past with silent sails and little opportunity to interact with one another. Nonetheless, she is still proud of the Mercy and all her achievements in the war pats, and looks forward to a time she can pin the chica down.|
|Lailah||Cybele adores her, and I've adored every moment I've spent in her presence. She is a delight, and a perceptive insightful woman at that. I hope we too can be close friends someday.|
|Laric||She hugged me once. Eugh. The treats are pretty good, though, and the tidbits of information we share.|
|Leola||The Mother Mercy has been a torch for the Faith, which is somewhat appropriate for the foremost among Lagoma. She encouraged me to pursue the discipleship of Petrichor. She supported the Lodge. She has a constant warmth to her, and her smile warms my heart|
|Malesh||She lead the Valardin Crew Team to an early lead that I wasn't sure we could recover from!|
|Reese||She heals me so often. Thanks to her I am still alive and walking around with all my limbs.|
|Roland||Princess Sophie is very wise and very lovely! She's also the best healer in Arx as far as I'm concerned and I don't mind letting anyone know it. I'm very honored to serve her and her family.|
|Saedrus||Dearest Sophie. Princess, Mercy, delightful company and most charming comforting confidant. I have known her since my arrival here to Arx but our friendship has grown so much since then. I can only hope the best for her, and know she will do so much in the future.|
|Sasha||My beloved cousin who leads the mercies. If I ever find the cure for my ailment. I want to join her in her work.|
|Silas||A smart cookie, a kind healer, and one most of the Compact should be eternally grateful for! Sophie has patched Silas and his men up many a time. She is also a fine tea connoisseur and does splendidly in trivia contests. She is everything one could ask for in a friend and it would be difficult to find better company.|
|Victus||The mother of mercies has been a symbol of hope and a warm presence. In a city where ego can blind people from doing decent shit, she's always stepped out of her way to help. No matter who they were, no matter where they came from, no matter what they did. She was just there to help. If there's anyone I respect in this city deeply, it's that woman.|