Lady Beatrice Malespero
Legacy accounting: Will you have been an asset or a liability on the world's balance sheet?
Description: Pretty in the "girl next door" kind of way, Beatrice has never been pursued exclusively for her looks. She is lovely when she chooses to be, when she presents herself to be, which is all part of the carefully crafted image she presents. Of course, even Beatrice would be hard pressed to look anything but Lycene. Dark, thick hair, dark, thick eyebrows, tanned flesh and dark eyes stand out, even amongst a family that tends toward dark.
Personality: Beatrice. Beh-ah-tree-chay. And that's /Lady/ Beatrice. This is a woman that sharp and witty and perfectly poised. Not always proper, but always proper for the situation, and always quick to upturn her nose and take note of bad behavior. It isn't that Beatrice is mean or petty, she is merely very aware of her own standing and that of others. After all, unlike most of her peers, Beatrice has done more with her life than be born. She earned her nobility, and so she demands the respect she is entitled to, and just the same expects other nobles to act respectfully. (And no, she's not going to admit there were some odd circumstances to her ennoblement, she earned it!) At the same time, she was born common, and knows what it's like to be in a tiered world, where privilege is so real, and so many do not have it. She does her best to respect commoners just the same, and encourage them toward greatness (all without acting common herself, no that wouldn't do at all).
Background: Beatrice's parents ran a shipping business out of Caith. The family did well enough, though at any given moment their entire fortune was wrapped up in some expedition or another, or it was drained to repair a ship, or something else meant constant scrimping and saving. As she grew, she watched her parents celebrate new deals and weep when a ship was lost. She saw how the pair went to bed every night exhausted. She watched as years and years of grueling, painful work netted them almost nothing. Beatrice decided that was not the life for her.
The woman was allowed out of the warehouses and away from the ledgers when she turned seventeen. It wasn't that she wasn't an excellent bookkeeper, she just wanted to see more. She was soon first mate aboard one of her mother's ships. At twenty-one, after a most unfortunate accident during a storm, Beatrice's ship was out a captain, and she was quick to take the job. By twenty-three, Beatrice was soon raking in piles of silver, all off the books and without her parents' knowledge. Beatrice had learned quickly the fine art of smuggling. She had fallen in with the Argento family, who ruled Nilanza back then. After financially supporting a failed attempt to overthrow the Pravus family, Argento was hurting for funds. They turned to illegal goods, and Beatrice became their primary mover. It was good, easy, fun work.
In the next couple of years, Beatrice left her family's company to work exclusively for Argento and oversee their ports and smuggling operations. Things were going well, until it seemed the Pravus family had figured out everything. Fearing Beatrice might flip on Argento, the family ennobled her. If she was an Argento herself, they reasoned, she'd be seen as guilty. She would be unable to turn against the family without getting herself imprisoned or worse. And they were right.
Beatrice fed information to the Pravus family. She saw the coming wave. She knew this would only end one way. And when the soldiers came to collect her, as they came to collect every Argento, she went into her cell with chin held high.
A year later, Beatrice has emerged from the dark of her imprisonment. In that time she not only convinced Marquessa Lianne that she was the one who had turned against her oath-breaking family, but that she was also ready to serve once more... not to mention too useful to have locked away. Beatrice was declared innocent of treason, and the time she served plenty to cover her other misdeeds. She surely wouldn't pick back up her old illegal ties, not after being granted her freedom! No, surely not. Now, she is still a noble, sworn wholly to House Malespero, and eager to get Nilanza back in proper order.