|Full Name||Larimar Jasper Azurios Montaigu|
|Titles and Styles||Master Montaigu|
|Father||Lord Carnelian Montaigu|
|Mother||Lady Aventurine Montaigu|
|Born|| April 17 487|
|Occupation||Apprentice to Azurios Erastothenes|
|Eye Color||Volcanic blue|
|Hair||Varying shades of blond|
"What did Master Settembrini think of the term 'illusion'? A state in which elements of dream and reality were blended in a way that was perhaps less foreign to nature than our crude everyday thoughts? The secret of life was literally bottomless, and it was no wonder, then, that occasionally there rose up out of it illusions -- and so on and forth went our hero in his amiably self-effacing and exceedingly easy manner."
-- Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
|487-504: The scion of Sorcery's Crest.|
Larimar and his twin sister Citrine are the youngest children of Lord Carnelian Montaigu, brother to Dioptase Montaigu, Lord Sorcery's Crest. Like their elder sister Lazuli, they were a product of two potent and storied bloodlines, Montaigu and Tremayne, each of which had born the high distinction of stewardship over that great mountaintop Pavilion where the mages of Mists come to test their mettle in spectacular and sometimes deadly magical duels.
Though not nobility themselves, they were raised with all the benefits, burdens and expectations of gentry. Dioptase, for reasons undisclosed, has not and at this point almost surely will not marry or produce an heir of his own body. A quiet bargain struck with the former baronial family of Moonshadow had all but guaranteed that Carnelian would serve as his brother’s heir, making the passage of nobility to Larimar and his sisters a foregone conclusion.
As such, the Montaigu twins received training in logic, rhetoric, music, etiquette… and, of course, magic. The family’s function as keepers of one of the central symbols of magical achievement on Mists made mystical excellence of paramount importance. Like all Mistian youths, Larimar and Citrine were taken to the sacred Cave of the Breath Imperius in the foothills of Gryphon's Reach to partake in the ancient rites that would set them on the path to magehood. Larimar’s own experience there was singular, however. Separated from the rest of the children and even his own sister, the boy was for some hours lost in the ancient catacombs from which the Breath that gives Mists its name is born. No one knows what happened in those long hours of isolation – perhaps not even Larimar himself. What is known is that the boy stagger-stumbled back onto the party, even paler than his bloodline warranted and either unable or unwilling to speak.
The condition lasted for two years. Practitioners of several magical schools were brought in by the family to study the mute boy and determine whether his condition was born of defect in mind or spirit. Even a Draughtian scientist was engaged to no avail. During those tender years of five to seven, Larimar’s second half and twin sister Citrine claimed to be able to know his mind in all matters and serve as his intermediary with others... despite the fact that Larimar was not known to speak to his sister either, even in private. Eventually their lord uncle Dioptase, a powerful metamage in his own right, came to the conclusion that this was not quite the case. Larimar was communicating his wants, wishes, and who knows what else to Citrine -- but not through common speech. The child had made intuitive use of illusion to 'whisper' to his sibling. The phase wore itself out in time, and though the transition back to speech in his seventh year took some time, it became clear that the pendulum had swung the other way entirely. Larimar developed into a gregarious and even garrulous lad, quick to laugh and possessed of a teasing and (mostly) good humored wit. Of more lasting consequence than the affair itself was the path it started him down. His family became convinced that his use of illusive whispering signaled a singular aptitude for the sphere. Larimar was to become an illusionist.
The presumed calling did seem appropriate to the boy's character and disposition. Full of boundless energy and ceaseless curiosity, Larimar was an explorer of the senses with a keen eye for detail and a love of flash and surprise. He took to the sphere with precocious relish and throughout childhood and early teens demonstrated something of the fierce intelligence credited to his father Carnelian before the man's untimely breakdown. And though the family looked with no small pride on their son as he excelled at his studies and demonstrated a social facility not hinted at by his two years of circumspection, they doubtless more quietly wondered whether he would inherit the his father's instability as well as the eccentric professor's more endearing and admirable traits.
And yet... the young man thrived at the Academy. In an odd reversal of roles, Larimar became the more outspoken and outgoing of the twins -- a stark contrast to Citrine's more studied reserve. A friendship developed with Axell Tyce, born to the obscenely wealthy family of mystic merchants. Though an accomplished student, he fell in with the Tyce's crowd of revelers and hard-partiers. Fortunately, the young man had inherited his family's love of hosting and entertainment, and after some time Larimar's parties became legendary in the Academy for their sheer spectacle.
It is easy to become jaded under such bacchic circumstances, and Larimar was not immune. Good natured effervessence turned towards a certain urbane insouciance. A string of adolescent flings accompanied his run of the social circuit, and he was attached (or rumored to be attached) to a number of Mist's young ladies. Among the more substantial pairings were Carenza Mezelien, Zenyatta Aoil, and Axell's sister Aubrey Tyce. Larimar and Aubrey ruled briefly and resplendently as king and queen of the Academy's 'in' crowd before a public and scandalous flameout.
But in life as in illusion, there is the the veneer of seeming and the real. Those closest to the vibrant young man spoke of swings of manic energy that would last for weeks, marked by bursts of academic productivity and festive revelry alike... followed by hard crashes that could see him locked away in his room for days and sometimes even a fortnight on end. A final such downward bout had the lad returning to Sorcery's Crest for a month in his eighteenth year. Thereafter, it was decided that Larimar would join his elder sister Lazuli in Gateway and learn of life at court. He arrived off the ferry every bit the polished, affable, and worldly son of Sorcery's Crest. All was right as rain.
|505-507: Adventures in Gateway.|
The arrival of Sorcery Crest’s favorite (and, admittedly, only) son had scarce time to register for classes at University or settle into the family apartments at the Wellington Arms before the biggest party in the Empire was upon him. It was more eventful than he could possibly have predicted – and Larimar’s imaginative powers are not inconsiderable.
On an evening where every man or woman must dress as his opposite, the Montaigu attended the Double Eclipse a silver-masked mourner. Though the night was replete with spectacle and debaucheries, perhaps of greater note were his several brushes with the supernatural: among them a drug-induced mass suicide at the Isle of Ale, a demon made of shadow in the newly unveiled Hedge Maze, and a disturbing animation of a lifeless young woman in the Plaza of the Keeper. More impactful, if perhaps not more important, was his reconnection with a former schoolmate by the name of Ava Emerson, who after running into her fair share of trouble following expulsion from the Academy was going by the alias Lark Othermorn. The two were much in each other’s company on Eclipse Night, and some may have noted that Larimar escorted the young lady home after she was accosted by a flock of ill-mannered ravens. The days that followed saw the pair increasingly close.
And she was, indeed, one of several in a group of youths present with Larimar at the market some weeks later when he was approached by one Master Tern Grenville, who claimed to be an associate to distant kin of his mother and one of the last surviving members of an anti-cultist faction called the Order of Adamant. Paranoid, insistent, and likely more than a little half-mad, Master Grenville demanded that Larimar journey to one of the now defunct Order’s old manors a half day’s ride outside of the city proper. As is so often the case, the Montaigu’s curiosity exceeded his good judgment. They were met with an ambush by a group they would later learn called themselves the Izengabe, which is a long and rather awkward way of saying, ‘The Nothing.’ A fierce battle broke out in which several of Larimar’s well meaning but ill-equipped party were captured, among them Tiege Soranus and Serath Evanor. The mageling himself had a brush with death when a spell from an earth mage buried him several feet beneath the ground. A combination of Master Grenville’s transportation magic and the uncharacteristically daring intervention of Lark saw him rescued from suffocation – though with several broken ribs to show for it.
Wounded and guilt-ridden for leading his newfound friends into disaster, Larimar spent several days in the infirmary and was unable to participate in the rescue of his missing companions – though he did play a role in discerning the motives and objectives of the thoroughly obscure Izengabe from his sickbed. His convalescence saw an increasing closeness with a similarly injured Lark Othermorn, the quiet fretting of his elder sister Lazuli, and the lightning-swift arrival of his beloved twin Citrine to his side.
Several weeks later, Larimar demonstrated some of his perhaps surprising resilience and a decided unwillingness to be twice shy after being once bitten when he participated in the second expedition to the Adamantine Chapterhouse of Triannon in the company of Duke Mists, Lady Guybrush, and Master Evanor. They uncovered what was later revealed to be the Order of Adamant’s namesake: a particularly hardy mineral with unexpected alchemical benefits. His continued participation in thwarting the impenetrable aims of the Izengabe was rewarded several weeks later with a box of chocolates laced with the toxin Abyssal Sleep, which induced in the already slumber-wary Montaigu hours of unrelenting nightmares. Neither the sender nor the other Izengabe were ever found or brought to justice, and it is presumed they still linger in the shadows of Gateway or Mists, along with any number of other malefactors.
Having gotten a taste for adventure, Larimar leapt at the chance to travel beyond the confines of the Barrier – without even knowing exactly where he was going. The invitation came from an unlikely source in the purist lord Leon Maritus, a sometime admirer of his sweetheart Lark. One winter’s morning the two boarded the ship of the ill-reputed Duke Phineas Ashlan of Green Fields and passed into the wider world. They returned a week later, worse for wear and adamantly unwilling to speak of the venture’s purpose, though some might infer from sheer timing that the trip had something to do with the grievously injured Baron Athar Soranus, Leon’s relation and spiritual head of the Purist sect. Regardless, Larimar returned with the first of what were to be several scars – and thereafter began instruction in swordplay from friend Serath Evanor. Perhaps the boy had the capacity to learn some lessons from calamity, if never quite the one many would consider most important and even obvious: caution.
On the personal front, his deepening relationship with Lark Othermorn saw sudden and dramatic complications towards the end of 505 as her uncertain parentage became much more certain – and unsettlingly so. The infamous transformation mage, Nyzia Erastothenes, stepped forward to claim Lark as her daughter. Thus Lark/Ava was given a third name… or, rather, made aware of her first: Lachesis Erastothenes. That her natural father was subsequently revealed to be yet another employee of Baroness Crescent Coast and a disciple of Lark’s grandfather (the even more infamous necromancer Azurios Erastothenes) was just one more in a series of troubling coincidences surrounding Lark’s murky past. The intrusion of a clan widely known for its obscene power and utter lack of scruples into the lives of the lovebirds would prove a daunting challenge in the years ahead, and for all the promise and excitement of Larimar’s first few months in Gateway, it ended 505 on a disquieting note.
|508: -- Return to form, and time abroad.|
- Early testing showed that Larimar had an equal aptitude for elemental magic as illusion, but he was quietly deterred from pursuing training in that sphere by his family.
- Oddly, Larimar and his twin have been groomed from an early age to take the lordship of Sorcery's Crest, even though they are preceded in the line of inheritance by their elder sister Lazuli.
- The young man has cultivated a number of hobbies. He shares his family's love of music and plays the harpsichord with aplomb. Since coming to Gateway, necessity has led him to try his hand at yet another pastime: fencing.
- Until his relationship with Lachesis Erastothenes, Larimar was notorious for having a new sweetheart every month. Some prior ones are on less than good terms, as Miss Lachesis once discovered during a visit to Mists.
|Playlist (in roughly chronological order)|
|Larimar Jasper Montaigu, working it.|