Small, badass super hot grad student.
I don’t know any of this off the top of my head.
Adel was born in July. Her mother always hated that. Who wants to raise a baby when the weather is that nice outside? Plus, everyone knows that people born in July are emotional on a good day and unbearably needy on a bad day. Adel loved school. Her primary school had walls covered in tattered books that Adel could stare at for hours. She would run her fingers across each of the unkept covers and wonder how far the book had to travel to end up in her hands. She imagined the old librarian, Mr. Noxi, with his arthritic joints and wrinkled skin as a young boy going out to the lands across the sea and fighting gorgons and dragons to protect the knowledge from evil wizards and rogues that preyed on little girls like herself. She dreamt of Mr. Noxi swinging between pirate ships on ropes made from the finest elven yarn to snatch a wizarding book on chaos from the men who sought to destroy the world or dive rolling under the fiery breath of dragon to steal a priceless alchemy text that unlocked the secrets of metallurgy (not that she knew what metallurgy was, but she knew it was dark and dangerous).
But as Adel got older, she quickly realized that the books weren’t tattered because they were priceless. They were old because her school was too cheap to buy new books, and Mr. Noxi was not protecting his treasure. He was just an unhappy old man with nothing better to do with his time. And boys who go marauding aren’t trying to protect the worlds greatest secrets, they are trying to get rich. She fell in love with the city she grew up in and forgot all about leaving to fight the mythical creatures. She went to university and studied the Urban Anthropology. She learned the essential elements of a city in each culture (markets, temples, bathhouses, and universities), and the architectural styles unique to each region. Adel grew more and more content in the world she knew and was protected in. She had friends and she loved her friends. They would go to pubs, play darts, flirt with the men in her classes and explore every nook and cranny of the city. If you wanted to know what the new cool bar would be or even where the underground government resistance was meeting, they knew and they would go, sit, watch and live vicariously through the people around them, living exciting lives. They were impressed by the diversity of people and would sometimes forget about each other as they listened to the conversations going on around them. But too be fair, people were just as impressed by the girls as the girls were of these people. Each of these wallflowers was extraordinarily beautiful, so they did not do well at blending in to the walls of the seedy bars they frequented. Maybe it was the attention they got that made them forget all about how isolated they truly were Adel took to story telling and performing naturally. She remembered everything she had ever read or heard and she could translate her fascination with the lives of others in to these fantastical tales of bravery, courage and deceit. She was frequently the life of the party amongst her friends, regaling them with the stories she had learned. People even went to far as to call her stories and her songs enchanting and she used that as a defense to distract people from her physical appearance by getting them lost in her words. That is also what brought her to anthropology. Anthropology is essentially just looking at the facts and writing a story to fill in the pieces. Adel graduated with honors and continued in to graduate studies in the same program. Her friends settled down with men they met in these bar and forgot all about their brief exploits memorizing the underworld of the city that they now felt superior to. Adel was studying the city full of people and for the first time, she felt alone in the city. She still took pride in knowing every secret spot and event, but now when she would go sit in these dark rooms, she would think about how the people came to the city instead of what they were doing in the city. She would wander aimlessly throughout the halls of the university, peaking in to the rooms of magical artifacts to run her fingertips along the blade of an enchanted elven sword or to gaze into the shimmering silvery pool of unicorn blood that could supposedly heal any wound. One day, she wandered into a room that vaguely reminded her of that library at her primary school. The tables were full of dirty swords, tools and what she could only assume were ancient scientific discoveries, and the walls were lined with piles of books with shredded spines and greying covers. She gingerly brushed the dust off of a book that clearly used to be the color of a forest just after a rain storm to reveal the faded yellow letters reading ‘Elven Curses’, but before she could read any further, she became aware of another presence in the room. Adel turned abruptly to see a man, with tanned skin, messy brown hair and a grizzly, rather unbecoming beard that Adel could only assume was poorly attempting to hide the scar that ran from just below his left eye to just above his jugular vein. Despite his unkept appearance, Adel could not help but think that with a shave and a shower, he might be pretty attractive, for an older man that is. “Can I help you?” he asked, looking a little annoyed. Adel stared blankly at the man, not knowing whether she should be frightened or not. “What are you doing in my lab?” he asked again. “Your lab? I thought this was a storage room,” Adel replied, looking around and not seeing much value in the room full of broken objects strewn haphazardly around. “What could you possibly be studying with all this junk?” This is what her mother had always hated about her. She never learned to hold her tongue. The mystery man’s eyes lit up with the kind of rage that would have sent a wiser girl running from the room, but Adel held her ground, not knowing enough about confrontation to know that she should be afraid. “Junk?” he snapped. “You wouldn’t know value if it hit you in the face. That book you are sodomizing over there is an ancient and powerful text I saved from a power hungry warlock. Everything in here was brought back from some world you cannot even imagine to protect the knowledge that it contains from some less prudent hand. Get out of my lab and don’t come back until you have learned to recognize when you are in the presence of great power.” Adel, quickly running out of retorts, apologized and left the room, though she began returning to the lab each day with a new question for the man she learned was the infamous Professor Marlamin Arroway, the great marauder and explorer the university employed to bring back beautiful treasures from far away lands. Adel became enamored with the man and began skipping her classes to hear about his bloody conquests. The city no longer seemed mysterious when there were evil creatures out there threatening her way of life that she had never even heard of. Adel switched her focus to Anthropology of Magic, and began learning basic spell casting from Professor Arroway. She hung on his every word as if it were God’s law. She followed him everywhere, and when he got the grant to start taking student help, she worked as hard as she could to be the one chosen to go on the journey.