4th Edition Exalted
Uthman was born to a lesser branch of a wealthy family, of the Old City in Chiaroscuro. His parents died when he was very young, his mother on child birth and his farther a scant 2 years later. He was adopted by his uncle Romandi and raised alongside Romandi’s own son Shelio as a brother. He was given education and training. Uthman would accompany his Uncle on his various trading ventures, Visiting the major coastal cities of the south, and on several occasions visited the Blessed Isle. He was very impressed with the ordered life of the Immaculate Order, but as time wore on he began to sense that something was rotten in the urban setting he found himself in. Greed and avarice very often seemed at the heart of the cities and their governance. In the common folk he found a despair that tore at his heart. The resignation of those waiting to die to advance their situation seemed a travesty, their hovels a grave injustice as the elite wallowed in luxury. Uthman begged his uncle leave to travel the world to find answers to the question that burned in his heart. His uncle granted him his leave and Uthman joined with a company of the imperial guard, hoping that an ordered military life would grant him peace and help him escape the decay and rot he felt consuming society. And indeed, the rigid ordered life of the soldier did sooth him; he found his commanding officers wallowed less in degeneracy than did the aristocrats he’d known earlier in life. Uthman displayed talent for battle tactics, and near instantly commanded the respect of the men he trained with, and soon rose in the ranks of the army. In combat he was fearless, facing against enemy warriors with valor and always giving quarter when asked. It was not to last. Late in the summer of his 4th year with the military, they were called back to Harborhead to put down a rebellion. This time they did not face armed and trained soldiers. This time they faced destitute peasants, hungry for bread, desperate for justice. Their tribe had been driven to poverty and out of the favor of Ahlat as they failed to defend their own cattle and offer up a sacrifice. With slings, clubs and cattle rods they had accosted the local governor’s food stores and had the governor himself besieged in his home. The battle was simple, no soldiers were lost, and injuries were minimal. Like a lion hunt, the troops surrounded the rebels and drove them towards their fellows. Uthman’s contingent stood ready to crush the folk as they fled the soldiers marching towards them. As the dying began, Uthman wept as the young and old, the able and the weak, all fell before the blades and arrows of his comrades. When the time came for his troops to finish those who had escaped to that point, Uthman ordered his troops to part and let the people go free. Uthman was disciplined, flogged before his fellows. Though the scourge had stripped away his offense, when his armaments were presented to him, Uthman laid them at the feet of his commander. Blood dripping from his back from the scourge marks, Uthman turned and walked into the savannah. For days he walked, the blood drying on his back, his mind in disarray and his soul casting about for direction. At last he came to an oasis at high noon, and as Uthman kneeled to sooth his thirst, he saw the image of a 4 armed warrior where the midday suns reflection should have been. This is what the Sun commanded: You are to bring the light of the Sun the people of this world. Too long my face has been turned from them, as they have turned from me. Face the Dawn! The Virtuous shall lead the way. I charge you this first task: The pain in your breast is Compassion denied, go forth and teach compassion to the people of the country. Walk amongst them, feel their pain, their hunger, and give them comfort. When enough have heard my message, and faith is renewed, I shall charge you again. Be healed of your pain, and go forth as the Herald of the Dawn.