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Author Topic: [Hobbit] Shale Briarstone  (Read 2121 times)

Shale Briarstone

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Shale Briarstone
« on: October 09, 2015, 03:48:40 AM »

Shale Briarstone

NAME: Shale Briarstone
NICKNAMES: Gosling, the Pest of South Farthing
DATE OF BIRTH AND AGE (AS OF T.A. 2941): March 15, 2918, 23 years
PLACE OF BIRTH: Sarn ford, Southfarthing, the Shire
RACE:  Hobbit
GENDER: Female

HAIR COLOUR AND APPEARANCE: Like many Hobbits, Shale's hair has a fine amount of curl to it, and hangs nearly to the middle of her back. It could be quite lovely if it were brushed more often, or had anything done to it other than simply being tied out of the way, or roughly pinned and kept up with a kerchief. There are many Hobbit lasses whose hair has been the subject of romantic poetry; Shale's hair is nothing of the sort. Loose curls and waves, her hair is the sort of brown young fawns' coats are that take on dull copper and dark straw tones if she's out in the sun often enough during the summer. Surprisingly, Shale prefers her hair long, simply because when it's short it's even less manageable and somehow even more of a mess, and impossible to keep out of her face when she's working. At best occasions, it'll be tied and pinned into a bun (which shows a lot more effort and care than Shale bothers with regularly), but wayward curls and frizzes still manage to escape and ruin any polished look that might have been hoped for.

EYE COLOUR: Warm amber brown

BODY TYPE AND HEIGHT: Shale is still very young into her tweens, and works much harder physically than many other Hobbits her age. It shows in her body, which seems to have not yet settled into much plumpness just yet. She stands at 3'4", but her brother has often teased that if she doesn't brush her hair down she'd gain an inch or two easily. Delicate feminine curves or gentle plumpness showing maturity are all but lost on Shale, whose body seems to struggle between wanting to plump out and spending too much of her day building, and the only sign that she'll eventually look like a proper adult Hobbit lie in her round cheeks. She's barely more than a child and her body shows it, however she's quite strong for her size, far more comfortable in her work room with her chisels and planers and doing heavy work than anywhere else.

OVERALL APPEARANCE:  Knowing her work is often very hot, labor-intensive, and less than tidy, Shale prefers to keep her clothing simple. Even if her dresses occasionally show stripe and floral prints, most often the colors are muted and somewhat dull. Many times she will have wraps and thick aprons covering her skirts, and sleeves of her blouses tight and out of the way lest they get caught in her work. Fine things, pretty jewels, and dainty laces are beautiful and delicate to look at, but serve the girl no purpose. When other girls her age flock to the peddler's wagons to swoon at brooches, silk ribbons, or the rare and exquisite feel of plush velvet, Shale is a very practical girl and likes her clothing in light layers that are easily cleaned, easily put out of the way, and easily repaired since she's terrible at sewing.

Over the years of apprenticing and working, Shale's made a good habit to wear aprons over her clothes and protective sleeve covers over her own, doing her best to not ruin her clothing. As a result, the aprons are typically dirty, caked in saw dust, and have scraps of wood and nails hiding in every corner and a few odd tools in every pocket. In the shop she works alone most times, and so cares very little if her face is smudged with a little dirt. A little dirt shows a good day's efforts. However, Shale does know that presentation is everything when it comes to business, and cleans up nicely when she is showing goods at fairs, or delivering merchandise to happy customers. With the exception of her hair, Shale looks quite the lovely young lady, dressed in her best calico dresses with the warmest of smiles as she shows her handiwork and proudly displays her family's engraved stamp on each piece.

DISTINGUISHING MARKS:   None physical, barring that her hands aren't as soft or smooth as a young lady's would be. Her fingers are calloused and a bit rough from wood working, and some small scars in her hands and arms from various nicks and cuts over time can be seen but are nicely faded.

WEAPONS: No weapons as anyone fighting in a battle would see them, but Shale has a solid working knowledge of a variety of tools, many of which can be used defensively, particularly her best carving knives.

FACE CLAIM: Carey Mulligan

STRENGTHS:  Stark honesty, skill with tools and quick to learn with her hands, climbing trees, playing her psaltery with two bows, she's a fair cook, incredibly devoted to her family, has a good eye for details, very caring, surprisingly gentle for how rough she can be or be perceived to be, her aim, finding things (typically whatever Grandfather's misplaced), can sketch (helps with her work and designing things)

WEAKNESSES:  Her stubbornness and temper have left much of her extended family a bit cold toward her, can't sew to save her life, her stark honesty, she doesn't know how to deal with her feelings well and would rather ignore them than deal with them, has a bad habit of acting before thinking things through entirely if the situation doesn't give her a moment to calm down, easily vexed, rather poor penmanship

ASPIRATIONS:  Shale has heard that Elvish carpentry is the most beautiful and ornate in the whole world; she would like to apprentice and learn a little some day, to make her own work improve. She would, however, give that up happily if it meant she could find out where her brother had gone to and bring him home. 

FEARS:  If you ask Shale what she's afraid of, she'll grumble and fess up to large rivers and ponds as she can't swim, but what she's honestly terrified of, she won't talk about. Shale's afraid of being left alone; if she's home alone she'll do whatever she can to get out of her house and go be around other people. Any other people, for as long as she can get away with, and if she must be alone she hardly sleeps and annoys her pet raccoon much of the night, or works building something until she falls asleep. More troubling than the quiet of being alone in a home or room too long, though, is her fear of those she cares for truly leaving her [/i]alone[/i]. She was always clingy to her immediate family, but after her father's passing it became that much more difficult to pry the girl from her brother's side as she followed him everywhere like a little gosling. The thought that people she holds dear can simply vanish from her life grips her with the worst kind of fear, resulting in a sort of push-pull relationship with them as she seems to unconsciously push them away to keep them from becoming much closer than they are and risk bruising her heart again.

PERSONALITY:  They say there's one in every family. They say it's a childish phase that children like this will outgrow. The unruliness is merely childhood rambunctiousness. The brutal honesty that shocked grown hobbits into an uncomfortable silence until the topic was changed abruptly. Shale was that child. The tiny hobbit tot who broke her arm when a ram in the grazing field decided he didn't want to be climbed upon or ridden. She was the girl who showered her father in gifts of fuzzy caterpillars and things that "followed her home." Shale was the girl whose temper could be easily goaded into roughhousing with her older brother and sending them both home caked in mud from top to bottom, bruised, and pouting that "Milosh started it." She was the little girl, who from so early on, loved her family so fiercely that being teased by her brother that she might not have really been a hobbit, but a changeling child sold by a dwarf merchant sent her howling hysterically for hours until he'd managed to soothe her and swear he'd only been teasing. Shale was the little terror that would scold her older cousins and children her age and shoo them off just so she could scoop up some poor leaf bug and move them to safety.

Shale's personality can be summed up abruptly, depending on whom you ask; to her better-off kin, she's ill-mannered, ill-tempered, and won't it be nice the day she settles down and behaves like a proper young lady ought to? She's seen as too bold and reckless and surely won't catch anyone's eye behaving that way, but for all Shale's outward bravado, the few who know her better know that it's just an act. Often times Shale will declare that she's not afraid of whatever's presented to her, letting stubbornness dig her feet in to stand her ground even though she's breathless with terror. Hitch the pony to the cart and make the delivery alone, all the way from Hardbottle to Buckland? Of course! No trouble! But damned if she's sleeping at all the whole ride and her knuckles aren't sore from gripping the reins so tightly.

If you asked her brother Milosh, he'd tell you his little sister is standoffish but means well, even if she can be quite the brat toward him. It's no secret that she thinks the world of her brother, and as such, nobody is allowed to give him a hard time but her. Shale is honest to a nearly brutal fault, finding it better to be direct rather than soften the truth in most matters, and would much rather people speak to her similarly instead of just skirting around her and whispering when she's out of earshot. Older ladies cluck their tongues and shake their heads, complaining that Shale's upbringing has made her unsociable, when to her, she merely has more important things to be doing. There's never a shortage of work that needs tending and her grandfather's getting too old to be doing it himself, leaving her to take the brunt of it before the elderly hobbit can comment. Shale would much rather spend her time being productive than listening to other girls idly gossip over tea, and few things bring a greater feeling of satisfaction than looking at her work and knowing she's created something beautiful and functional. Despite her harder approach to things, Shale is a very caring and compassionate young woman, and though she may say little on the matter she will do what she can to help those around her or fix a problem if she can.

She's a very practical girl, and has what her father called an abundance of "plain Hobbit sense," and if it doesn't serve her needs, then it's not likely to be something she'll want for herself. Shale doesn't see herself as terribly adventurous; doing whatever needs doing, regardless of circumstances isn't adventure or bravery, it's simply doing what's right. Minding her neighbor's sheep Shale won't hesitate to fend off would-be lamb thieves, even though in hindsight she'll realize that it was probably foolish to do so alone. To her, Milosh is the brave and rather sheep-headed one, since he's the one who up and left the Shire. But that's what defines Shale, even though she doesn't see it as such; she wanted to go, and realized that nothing was stopping her or her brother from going anywhere they wanted, age be damned, except Shale's sense of duty to her family. If she'd left, who would care for their grandfather? Who would tend to the business? It's her sense of loyalty and duty that push her to do anything that she sees as must be done, whether it's hurl stones at lamb thieves, brave the long rides alone rather than risk her grandfather's health, or suppress her own wishes to see what lies beyond the world she knows in order to maintain the little and safe home she has.

At the farthest borders of South Farthing, a skilled family of furniture-making hobbits lived in a smial much too large for just the four that lived there. To Shale, her family was perfect, even without a mother to teach her to be the sort of young lady her father's sisters spoke about Shale needing to become. Told that her mother had "traded places" with Shale when she was born, there was never any particular sadness attached to the notion of the woman she'd never met, all of her attention and affection pouring onto her father, her older brother, and her grandfather.

Shale Briarstone was the youngest in a family that had been carpenters by trade for generations, and girl or not she clung to her father and grandfather, keenly observing and learning their craft as much as she could. There was a time that Briarstone had been a prominent name in carved goods all over the Shire, and their family had at one point been quite wealthy from their trade. Times had changed, though, and the family business was down to just them to keep going. But it would work; Shale had decided from a very young age that it would work and that was that. Life was quiet and steady at the borders of the Shire, and despite her bold playfulness she showed stubborn drive to perfect skills shown to her, every day spending time to hone her craft or accompany her father and brother to sell their wares.

Had life stayed that way forever, Shale would have believed it perfect. But the winter her father died marked the end of the world to her, and some part of her that she felt left with Wilf. She withdrew, not eating for many days afterward and longer still before she picked up her tools again. Shale's smile took much longer to heal as the little hobbit decided that she would carve things more beautiful than ever to carry on her father's trade, and buried herself in her work. She might have stayed in her workroom forever had her grandfather, Renfro, decided that a change of scenery would be better for the three of them, and better for business to move closer to other hobbits. Sarn ford was left far behind and replaced with Hardbottle.

The change of pace seemed abrupt to Shale and Milosh, both young hobbits having to adapt to living somewhere much more populated and closer to other towns, and where relatives could be visited more regularly. For a time it seemed a good thing, and Shale spent slightly less time in their shop and more time with aunts and cousins for tea and "lessons," and many uncomfortable talks about when Shale was grown and would marry. She wouldn't marry, she decided; she would simply carry on creating wood pieces and selling them, and let her brother worry about any sort of family things. But business continued to be rocky at best. Grandfather was getting on in years and becoming absent-minded, occasionally forgetting where he'd placed things that he'd just had, or accidentally calling Shale by her mother's name, Fern. It was up to Shale and Milosh to make sure they were provided for.

The brother and sister worked relentlessly, creating and selling at different markets, doing all they could to up their business. Every good hobbit appreciates the comfort that comes from certainty, and neither Milosh nor Shale knew quite what to do to bring that feeling back until one night, Milosh had decided upon a solution: he'd leave. He argued with his sister for hours, reasoning that if he left to outside the Shire for Bree, he could do business with both hobbits and men. They'd done work for men before, and even though the sizes made building difficult, their quality was far better than many men had the patience for. He would go, build business outside the Shire, and send back orders for new pieces and send back money regularly to care for Shale and their grandfather, and to set aside for when either of them married. Not an adult yet, Shale countered that he wasn't old enough to leave and that Grandfather would never consent to it, but Milosh was just as stubborn as Shale was, and would neither wait years to be old enough or for permission, and left. It's something Shale's still rather sore about, but isn't sure if she's more angry that Milosh left, or that he didn't take her with him. Three years gone, and Shale's marked every day.

Letters came steadily enough, and soon orders and money regularly, Shale taking the orders for small furniture pieces or the odd ornamental thing and sent them to Bree for her brother. Things became steady again and a sigh of relief was let out as Shale did what she could to keep up with the slow stream of request and taking carpentry jobs within the Shire, working as the face of the business and often stating that Grandfather was too tired to come and her brother was "away on business." Slowly things became content once more, and occasionally visitors from outside the Shire came to seek Briarstone Carpenters for goods, and it's done well to keep Shale busy and occupied and from having too much time to fret that letters from Milosh have stopped. It's been six months and better since she's heard from him, and keeping busy is all she can do to keep herself from climbing walls with worry, right now pouring that much more effort into her work to care for herself and grandfather. For all your woodcraft needs, Shale Briarstone is at your service.

YOUR NAME: Shale will do :3
AGE:  Old enough to know better, young enough to have fun doing it anyway.
COUNTRY:  Currently USA.
EXPERIENCE:  *laughs* Started with tabletop and LARPs at 10, and hopped into online RPs around 14, so... Roughly 20 years.
OTHER CHARACTERS:  None, presently. Give it a week
HOW DID YOU FIND US?:  Google-fu!

  Shale weighed the purse of coins in her small hand, thinking carefully as she considered her options. The dwarven merchant was asking nearly every penny Shale had saved for a new set of carving knives, but to be fair, they were the finest she'd ever seen. The blades were strong and finely honed, and tempered in such a way that the merchant said they'd rarely need a full sharpening, even with the amount of work she did. She was a regular of Belunn's and every time the faded yellow cart rolled into the Shire to sell wares, while other hobbit lasses flocked to him to fawn over fine jewelry Shale was always pestering the old dwarf for new tools.

The set of knives were almost more than she could afford, but looking at them she knew Belunn had brought them with her in mind, the oak and bone handle of each knife just thick enough and curved enough to fit the smallest of hands. "You drive a hard bargain," Shale said quietly as she opened the purse. "You seem to get more expensive each visit."

The elderly dwarf chuckled with a broad smile as he stroked his beard patiently. "You know it's the quality, Pet. Not my fault I can't talk you into any of the bracelets like the other girls." The coins had only just dropped into his hand when following the clinking sound, something on the cart chittered, and then wiggled, demanding the young hobbit's attention entirely. Money spent, Shale stepped away from Belunn and reached toward his cart, lifting the scraps of fabric that covered the sound only to find a small wooden cage holding a small black and grey... thing. A striped and bushy tail and a masked face, it was unlike anything Shale had ever seen before. Belunn laughed faintly. "A nuisance from forests far away. But when they're grown, their fur is quite warm and good for hats and boots. This one's still a kit, but the furrier will still buy him."

Tiny finger-like claws reached through the wooden bars and pawed at Shale's small fingers, drawing them close to nip and suckle. It was still a baby and being sold to die? Belunn was wrapping up the knives as Shale stood quietly petting the animal, trying to reason between her heart and mind before her mouth finally decided for her. "How much?" The dwarf looked back to his customer, perplexed. "How much would the furrier pay for him?"

"About what I've sold the knives for. You don't want him, love. They're clever, but all they do is eat. He won't do you no good in the fields or shops." He held the box of knives out to her. "Come on now, you've wanted these a while." The case held the set of knives made just for Shale, and they weighed heavily in her free hand before she pushed them back.

"I'll buy the knives next time you come to town, and buy him this time. I'll raise him and train him." She'd make due with the knives she had for now and just explain herself to Grandfather later somehow. Shale didn't give the knives a second glance as she reached out to open the little cage and take hold of the furry baby that enjoyed nursing on her fingertip so much. The money had already left her mind entirely, and she was beginning to turn to walk away when Belunn tapped her shoulder, smiling as he held the box out to her once more.

"Carve me something pretty for next time I come round," he said warmly. "I'll be back next spring."

« Last Edit: March 13, 2016, 06:49:54 PM by Mandos »

Shale Briarstone

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Re: Shale Briarstone
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2015, 04:18:19 AM »
Done <3


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Re: Shale Briarstone
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2015, 04:52:29 AM »
Yay more hobbits! <3 she's lovely, Shale!


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