Esmeralda is the leader of the Court of Miracles and the Queen of the gypsies. She is currently in Zabier and has made a deal with the Sultan in order to ensure her people's survival. Esmeralda has had five children and is currently five months pregnant with her sixth child. Esmeralda's first daughter is Scheherazade the product of the woman's decision to lay with Jafar in order to distract him and gain back the golden scarab half that was an heirloom of the court. Her four other children belong to her and her husband Phoebus an ex captain of the guard.
Early Life Edit
Esmeralda grew up in the Hyadies with the Court of Miracles. They all lived in small tents or carriages. Only once and a while would the court wander out of their mountain home and into the cities of Solhara. The gypsies would interact with different traders that had to pass through the mountains. Not all of their dealings were honorable however. During her childhood Esmeralda was not known by that name but was rather named and referred to by the gypsy word for daughter, Chey. The name of Esmeralda was also a title and was given to the leader of the matriarchal tribe. So until Esmeralda's mother died or stepped down she would be known as Chey.
As the heir Esmeralda was gifted with the stories of the Court. She was often seen following her mother and learning the history and traditions of her people. Such things were priceless and would only be kept alive by the Court’s people. At the age of five Esmeralda was told the significance of the name her mother held as well as why she was Chey. The Court of Miracles traces their lineage back to the ancient kingdom of King Midas. The great city of El Dorado was their home and the people thrived. Such a city was not without their rival though. The Gem King and Gold King both fought for control over the vast desert. King Midas hoped to bring about peace and agreed to marry his youngest daughter to the Gem King’s son to form an alliance. The Gem King though betrayed King Midas and once he had the man’s daughter attacked Midas. The two families warred and much blood and gold were spent. Midas went down beneath his castle to the lamp that housed a djinn. He wished for enough gold to pay his soldiers, but in the end even that gold ran out. The second wish is what destroyed El Dorado. Midas fearing for his people wished that everything he touched would turn to gold. The king went mad the city fell. The two children of Midas, Esmeralda and Zoreen both escaped. Zoreen escaped into the desert with the Knights of the Caliphate and Esmeralda down into the tunnels and catacombs beneath the city with the remainder of the courts. When after forty days and nights of wandering through the dark tunnels they emerged into the Hyadies. Esmeralda thus became the name and title of their female leader. Her daughter would be simply known as Chey till the mantle was passed down. If that Esmeralda was still alive when she passed the mantle down she became Puri Daj which simply means grandmother in the gypsy language.
When Esmeralda was ten her people were attacked by a group of mercenaries that had been hired by Jafar. Clopin had taken her to safety until they were sure that the danger was gone. When she returned to the camp she found other survivors, but the slaughter was horrific. Clopin tried to get her to leave, but instead Esmeralda ran off to look for her mother. When she came upon her tent the young girl found her parents dead. Her father lay impaled on his own sword with his eyes gouged out of his head. Her mother had her throat slit but not until after the men had ravaged her or so Esmeralda guessed by the torn dress, bruises, and the way her mother’s legs were splayed out. Esmeralda buried her parents and the others that had been killed. With the remnants of the court they gathered up what they could find and left. The half golden scarab that was an heirloom of her people had been stolen from her mother. Chey swore that day that she would get the scarab back and get revenge for the horrific act done to her people.
The Court of Miracles had made its way to Zabier when they had nowhere else to go. The court existed on the fringes of society. The people of Zabier didn’t trust them fully and the court had to resort to less honorable means of survival. Esmeralda still had not forgotten her mission to find the golden scarab half. One day when she was fifteen the young woman saw it around the neck of the Judge Jafar. The men in white turbans that surrounded him were also familiar to those that had survived the attack on their camp and saw the assailants. Esmeralda knew then that Jafar was the man responsible for her parents’ deaths and those of the court. Revenge was so close and yet so far away.
For weeks the young woman stalked Jafar. She watched him and observed everything about him. The woman learned his schedule, watched what he did, who he saw, how he behaved in the castle and then how he behaved beyond those walls. Esmeralda soon knew almost everything she needed to know about Jafar. He was a snake of a man. He hid in the grass waiting to strike. The woman didn’t even believe that he was the sultan’s friend. It didn’t matter though if that was true or not. The Sultan was part of house Nejem. That house was the house of the Gem King. He would get his as well, but at the time Jafar was her only target.
Driven by need and revenge Esmeralda bided her time until she could determine what needed to be done. The woman needed that half scarab back. She needed it so that she could open up the cave of wonders. Rumor had it that Cassim the leader of the forty thieves had the other half. Together the two of them could open up the Cave and Esmeralda could get to the djinn. She could get her revenge on those that had wronged her and her people, but first she needed that half scarab. The young woman knew that she could not just go in and steal it. The scarab was never far from Jafar and the man almost never slept. No doubt he never slept deeply either. No she needed a less risky way to get what she needed. It became clear to her that the easiest way would be to lull the man into a false sense of security. She made the decision to sneak into the palace and seduce the man. Esmeralda did just that and became pregnant by the action.
Esmeralda’s betrothed at the time, Gringoire, was furious. He told Esmeralda that she needed to get rid of the unborn child, but the woman refused. Angry the man tried to get the court to rise up against Esmeralda to shame her, but none were willing to. The young woman had done what she must to get back the heirloom. Tradition and history were the identity of the Court.
Esmeralda and her people were immediately put on the most wanted list in Zabier. Jafar wanted them to be hunted down. His quest it seemed to be was to find the woman, get back the scarab, and kill her. Then the news reached him that Esmeralda was pregnant. It became even more imperative that the woman be killed. The captain of the guard Phoebus who was sent to serve in Zabier from Calladahn was charged with finding her and killing her. Phoebus was unable to do so and soon defected. He aided Esmeralda and ultimately the two fell in love with each other. They arranged for the court to get out of the city. They could not all leave at once as that would be too conspicuous so they left in small groups. Esmeralda refused to leave until all her people were out and safe. By that time though the woman was too far along and ready to give birth. She gave birth to a baby girl, but the young babe was deformed. There was no time to waste though as Jafar’s men were bearing down on them. Phoebus was sent to get Esmeralda out, Asima who was Clopin’s wife was sent with the baby to get out with the child, and Clopin stayed behind hopefully to distract the men. Esmeralda, Phoebus, and Clopin escaped, but Asima was killed on the steps of the temple to the Forebearer and the child was taken in by Jafar.
Desert Life Edit
The court traveled about the desert for years. There were few places to settle down and none of them wished to return to Zabier. During this time though they were seeking the forty thieves. The initiation of the Esmeralda still had yet to take place and they could not perform it without the forty thieves. The two were linked together whether they liked it or not. While the court wandered Esmeralda mourned the loss of her daughter and it became the one thing she desired. Revenge was forgotten. The young woman now saw how pointless it was. It was time for the court to move and try to do more than just survive. They needed to live. It had worked in the Hyadies, but Jafar had upset that. From now on the court needed to lay low. The woman was not alone. She still had Clopin and now she had Phoebus. The two had grown close and their relationship became more intimate. They wished to marry, but Esmeralda would not do that until she had gone through the initiation. She was still just a daughter, and had to be queen before she would marry.
After three years of traveling the court finally found the forty thieves and they all set out to the lagoon where the ritual would take place. There were a series of cliffs and caves near the clear waters. For a week Esmeralda was placed inside with only a large jar of water. For a week Esmeralda had to sit in complete darkness with nothing but rats and lizards for company. At the end of the week she was taken from the cave and led down to the beach where she was stripped, lathered with mud, and then painted with a golden colored dust. Four men from the forty thieves rowed her out on a raft into the lagoon. Once there they sliced their hands dripping the blood into a clay bowl that Esmeralda held. The four men swam back to shore and once there Esmeralda poured the blood into the lagoon. She jumped into the water and swam back to shore where she was wrapped in green and gold silks. That evening her and Phoebus were wed.
The two have four children together with another on the way. All of them were born in the desert. Their first born son Djali is sixteen, followed by their fourteen year old twins Asima and Samarah. The fourth child is a son named Hassim who is currently ten. Esmeralda is pregnant with her sixth child.
Esmeralda is currently back in Zabier with the Court. Due to the Blight they had to return to a safer area than the open desert. In the past few months Esmeralda has made huge strides toward peace between the Court and Zabier. She has made a friendship with the Sultan and is hoping to be recognized as a legitimate tribe of Solhara. There is still much unrest in the Court.