General Appearance Edit
Long, subtly wavy hair that is usually worn loose. Either dark blonde or a very light brown in colour. Tends to walk with good, if quite purposeful, posture and generally holds a direct and undaunted gaze. Her pale green eyes are often mistaken for grey. They betray a touch of pride tempered by mischief, despite their recent solemnity. Hanamene smiles less these days, though when she does have occasion to the smile has a tendency to unexpectedly light up her entire face evidencing that at least at one point in time, however long ago, she had occasion to laugh well and often.
Usual Gear Edit
A silverite longsword, templar-issued in make, as well as an unremarkable steel dagger and a round, though slightly more oval, steel shield. The shield is embossed with a pattern of briers and roses, but it is not painted. As for armour, Hana actually prefers medium-weight leathers to heavy plate metal. She will usually wear a grey surcoat or cloak over her leathers as well. Her style of dress is deliberately martial, leaning toward equestrian. She also wears a Tevinter-made silver locket around her neck.
Hanamene and her brother Caethan , five years older than she, were born somewhere in Ferelden though were ultimately raised in the Hinterlands. They grew up close to the south of Lake Calenhad, between Redcliffe and Lothering, but their paternal family had historically recognized the Arl of Redcliffe as their arl for generations. The Thornecroft surname originally derived from a habitational reference to their family’s cottage home and surrounding plot of land as its stone croft was long-ago overgrown by wild roses.
As was the case with all elf-blooded children, though born of an elven mother, elf-blooded "Hana" and "Caeth" resembled their human father, the templar Ser Graeven Thornecroft, instead. The standing rumour remains that Graeven's elven "wife", though they were never formally married, left the Thornecrofts to become the mistress of some nobleman who had occasionally imposed upon the Thornecrofts for hospitality during his travels. Hana and her brother were barely more than babes when this allegedly happened, but their father never uttered their mother's name again and neither did Hana nor Caeth ever remember what it was. Their grandfather, however, occasionally alluded to the animosity between their elven mother and Tevene grandmother. During the siblings' earliest years, their grandmother Estella, was not affectionate toward her elf-blooded grandchildren. She eventually warmed up to them, as the years went on, though often lied about the identity of her grandchildren's mother. Publicly, were anyone to ask, she claimed Hana and Caeth’s mother had died. What Estella lacked in warmth, she made up for in providing her grandchildren with an education rarely, if ever, afforded to ignoble freeholders. She passed down her own high-born education, and taught them histories, lore, and heraldry, with a particular emphasis on Tevinter though ensured they knew enough about Ferelden as well. The latter was almost taught to them begrudgingly, or perhaps Estella thought that in educating her son, and later her grandchildren, the Thornecrofts might be able to one-day navigate Ferelden politics and elevate their station. Much to her chagrin, the Thornecrofts, outside of Estella, never really shared her frustration with their middle-of-the-road lot in life.
Hana's great-grandfather, on Estella's side, was a ruthless individual once of note in the Imperium. Magnus Augur was a magister of the Altus class, who was assassinated by unknown individuals. He'd had slaves that he had abused for years and number of political enemies with motive enough to kill him. After his death, the Augurs were immediately disgraced, to the extent of also being targeted, in Tevinter society. What remained of her grandmother's family fled south and sailed the Waking Sea, en route to Ferelden. They never regained their wealth, nor any sort of status within the Imperium. Though a mage like Hana's tyrannical great-grandfather, the slain magister in question, Estella deliberately concealed her abilities from her husband and son. When Estella fled to Ferelden after her father's death, she made the claim that her family's magic died with her father, all the while operating a clandestine business selling runes and enchantments from out of the Thornecroft home to "lost travellers" whenever her husband was away from home. Despite Estella going to great efforts to hide her magic while operating a clandestine business, Hana and her brother Caethan had witnessed their grandmother's use of it on occasion but they never spoke a word of it to anyone save for one another. Caethan feared Estella would be taken to the Circle or worse, while a conflicted Hanamene merely felt something more akin to shame with regards to the knowledge itself.
Hana's father, though born in Ferelden, was raised to hold a faith that saw his piety divided between the Orlesian and Imperial Chantries. The Imperial Chantry differed from other denominations, in that their Tevene order blamed the Old Gods instead of ancient magisters for the creation of darkspawn. As a templar of the Andrastian faith's Templar Order, Graeven never publicly sided with the Imperial Chantry, but a small number of those close to him may have suspected that he held such conflicted views. His children, however, had always conformed to the Andrastian beliefs of their grandfather, however, as he was ultimately the most present figure in their lives. It was always a wonder to Hanamene, how her grandparents got along let alone how they had even met for that matter.
While the children were primarily raised by Graeven’s parents, their father served in the ranks of the Templar Order and had initially been stationed at Kinloch Hold. When it was discovered that he had gone and had children without the express permission of his superiors, Ser Graeven was transferred to the Hossberg Circle in the Anderfels. Despite this first transfer, the templar leveraged his position as a wandering Knight-Tracker to make trips home to visit with his family. Though not home often, when he was he would teach his children to spar using wooden swords, to set up camp, to hunt and track, to avoid basic traps, to navigate terrain by map and stars, and to ride his horse. Hana enjoyed sparring with the wooden swords, but enjoyed riding most of all. Graeven wanted both of his children to become templars, which is why he took steps to train and educate them as he would any young candidate or recruit. While Hana excelled and seemed well-suited to the calling, her brother rebelled entirely and often ran off before their lessons could even start. Caeth's doing so, however, merely meant that Hanamene received all the more of her father's tutelage. Her grandparents were divided on the issue, with her grandmother being completely against any notion of the siblings serving an Orlesian Divine. It was little secret that Graeven's doing so himself broke her heart many times over. In truth, Estella knew little of the influence she'd actually had in the formation of her son's complicated and contradictory belief system. Hana's father had more conservative views with regards to magic use, which was why he joined the Templars in his youth. As a Knight-Tracker, he did not altogether hate mages, but he did feel that the use of magic ought to be regulated with prudence and care. It was said that he was a brave man, but that he had a tendency to test the limits of his own rank, butting heads with his superiors, and that he was likewise rumoured to have been too lenient with apostates. He was a pious man, and had a great reverence for the Orlesian Chantry despite his mother's views. His faith in the Maker was a strong part of his overall identity but some whispered that his mother's heritage may have influenced his slightly centrist views on mages overall.
Hana's grandfather was a successful mason and engineer who was rarely without a commission. The elder Thornecroft was often referred to as Mason Thornecroft, though Mason was not his true name, and he regularly traveled throughout Ferelden on commissions to build, repair, or renovate Chantries and noble estates. When their grandfather's travels stayed closer to home, within the arling and inclusive of smaller villages like Honnleath, Hana and Caeth would accompany him. A pious man, Hana remembers that her grandfather enjoyed working on Chantries most of all for he believed it brought him closer to his faith. Surprisingly, it would not be solely through a templar father or a once-Altus grandmother that Hanamene would learn how to lead others, but through Mason as well. The Master Builder ever remained invested in his work, so much so that he oversaw their construction directly and served as the other builders' foreman, barking orders at times, when things moved too slowly, or strategizing how to best use whatever resources were afforded to him. When she was quite small, Hana was often at his side when he did this, repeating his orders with her little hands on her hips as if to stress their importance. The Thornecroft siblings often played with the village children they met when they weren't sitting in Chantry sermons or apprenticing for their grandfather. Their childhood friendships were usually fleeting, however, as they ultimately returned to their quiet cottage life thereafter. However, as the siblings got a bit older, Caeth, in particular, made less friends in the villages as he had a habit of defending Hana's honour anytime a potential suitor even looked his little sister's way.
When not helping her grandfather with his work, Hanamene often wandered over to the neighbouring freehold - land held by a local knight who'd been a friend of their family's - and spent the bulk of her formative years, outside of sparring with a sword, learning how to ride and handle horses. She did receive one particular scolding, however, when she'd taken one of her neighbour's horses out of his stable for a solitary ride into the Hinterlands alone and well after sunset. Nonetheless, over the years she grew to become a far more capable and responsible rider. In addition to some of the histories her grandmother had taught her, Hanamene also learned a great deal about military histories and tactics from the knight as well. She even offered to squire for him at one point, but her grandmother forbid the notion afterward - still intent on somehow fashioning Hanamene into a less martial lady. It remained a source of tension and resentment between Hanamene and Estella for many years to follow.
The Thornecrofts' home would ultimately be destroyed in the Fifth Blight, however, which saw both of their grandparents killed. The siblings took flight, heading northward where they encountered a train of caravans beset upon by darkspawn. Among the survivors of the Fereldan convoy, were a templar, named Ser Luther , and his apostate prisoner. Hana and Caeth witnessed the mage take advantage of the ensuing fray and in an effort to reclaim his own freedom, the prisoner turned on the templar. The mage attempted to take flight, battling through darkspawn to do so, while the injured templar likewise fought after him. Hana’s brother did not want to concern themselves with the templar’s quandary, but Hana insisted on helping the wounded man. Caeth complied only after being shamed to do so when his sister asked him what fate he might hope for, for their templar father, in a similar situation. The siblings took up weapons salvaged from the scene and the trio then set off after the apostate-turned-maleficar, escaping the darkspawn, and eventually caught up with the rebel mage. By then the templar’s health had worsened and the maleficar attempted to take advantage of the opportunity once more. Ser Luther, to his credit, tried his best to cut down the mage but the templar's injuries were too great. The mage seemed sure enough about to finish the other man off. Hana could not stand aside. As the maleficar focused on disabling the templar further, Hana intervened and caught the mage by surprise with the plunge of her dagger. Though her father had taught his children to hunt for small game in their youth, killing the mage was the first time Hanamene had ever taken the life of an actual person.
The siblings and well-marred templar thereafter made it across the Waking Sea to the Free Marches, after securing passage on a cramped vessel packed with a number of refugees. In Kirkwall, the trio were unexpectedly reunited with Graeven who had recently been transferred a second time. It was only when the two templars came together to exchange tales did Hana learn the full extent of the slain mage’s crimes. The mage had been wanted for a number of reasons in Kirkwall, dating from before the Blight. His name had been Gauvain Angevine, of Orlais, and he’d escaped capture many times before. He was not originally considered a maleficar despite his blossoming notoriety, thus the wounded templar had only wanted Gauvain to answer for his misconducts initially and to bring him peacefully to the Circle. The fact that the apostate became a maleficar in deciding to attack the templar made little difference to Hanamene. Circle mage, apostate, or maleficar – it didn’t matter in this instance, Gauvain was reckless and had to be stopped before he hurt anyone else. Briefly, Hana and her brother became wards of the Chantry thereafter - resuming studies therein. Given her previous training and education, her handling of the nefarious Gauvain Angevine, as well as the aid given to the wounded Ser Luther prior, the Templar Order made an exception in recruiting Hana despite her age. She trained with them, for four years thereafter.
Her brother did not wish to become beholden to religion in any respect, however, and ran away from the Chantry, though it was an open secret thereafter between Hana and her father that Caeth had not left Kirkwall altogether. Instead, her older brother briefly resumed a pugilist career in Darktown until, much to his initial resistance, he was happened upon and conscripted by a Grey Warden. He was killed by darkspawn shortly after - or so she heard. Thus, Hana resents the Grey Wardens. She believes that her brother, despite his brawling ability, was not suitably trained to ensure he would have had a fighting chance of survival. She knew her brother all too well and just as their father had always said, he was never going to be a proper soldier.
Recently, Hanamene's father was also slain by a presumed maleficar, a blood mage of unknown origin that, for all Hana knows, is still at large to this day. Following the loss of both her brother and father, poignantly in the years after the Fifth Blight, Hana has become a lapsed-Andrastian. Never having taken lyrium, the former near-templar not long ago abandoned her prior intentions of following in her father's Knight-Tracker footsteps. After her father's funeral pyre in the late summer of 9.34 , Hanamene left the Circle on the eve of what was to be her vigil. She found employ guarding cargo on the docks at first but eventually began to rent out a very small flat in Lowtown, not far from the Hanged Man, above a Dwarven architect's place of buisness. While not an official apprentice, she occasionally assists him with his blueprints - a role she often played alongside her grandfather in her youth when he discovered she was a capable illustrator and had an eye for design. Primarily though, Hanamene serves as her new employer's private guard. The Dwarven builder, known as Hal Saeridin of Saeridin & Son Building Company , mostly though not exclusively, works in stone landscaping, designing the courtyards and gardens of the wealthier populace of Hightown as well as in the restoration or renovation of Tevinter buildings in a style he likes to call Neoclassical Tevene. Hal claims his is a competitive business, thus he hired Hana as his unassuming brawn, in an effort to protect his plans from what he calls "potential saboteurs", though he was pleasantly surprised to find she had a brain as well. Working for Hal is not something Hanamene could truly find any long-term satisfaction in but he pays her enough that she is able to make ends meet and set aside money for her own venture - that being the the restoration of her home back in Ferelden.