Still needs links but basically done - Tele
Orpheus is the bard aboard the Argo and a member of Jason's Argonauts as they sail the corrupted seas looking for the Golden Fleece. He bears a golden lyre with magical powers and a heavy curse.
Early Life Edit
Orpheus might be the son of a king. His mother, Calliope, was one of the favourite mistresses of a minor king but with no way of knowing she decided not to risk her neck trying to prove it. Orpheus grew up in the brothel and was trained by the other whores to play music to entertain the guests. He proved quite adept at it. However, before his age became a liability and puberty set in, his mother and her "sisters" sold him to a travelling troupe. He does not remember the name of the town where he grew up and that was the last he ever saw of his family.
His years with Pisander's Players were not pleasant. He learned more of his craft, to be sure, but he also learned that not all guardians are vested in the well being of their charges. He endured years of horrible abuse after performances until finally he was able to flee at the age of 15.
The Lyre and the Curse Edit
Orpheus made his living by his skill. He would wander from town to town offering his services at taverns and festivals in exchange for food and lodging. It was not a luxurious existence but he was finally free and he loved it.
Then one night after a performance a tall man approached him and made him an offer. He presented Orpheus with a wondrous golden lyre, the bard's favourite instrument, and explained that he would give it to Orpheus in exchange for learning and singing a certain song. The young man was too enthralled by the beautiful instrument to question the impossibly generous deal and agreed. He has regretted it ever since.
The song the man spoke of is - what Orpheus has come to believe - the Song of the World. The Music plays in his head constantly and provides a soundtrack for what he sees around him, although the music seems to be a score for the way things would be if the story of Ga'leah were a happy fairy tale rather than the dark misery of a world that it is. This constant strain of sound and disjointed messages has had an effect on the man and he believes he is slowly going mad. He has shut down nearly all of his emotions and has a permanently sour outlook on life.
The only temporary relief he can find is to play the Music he hears upon his Golden Lyre. Unfortunately when he does this around an audience those who hear the music react unpredictably. Some go into a trance, others begin performing tasks only to have no memory afterwards, some begin to experience uncontrollable emotions, and some have simply laid down and died. He therefore tries to avoid playing in front of people but without an audience the relief he receives by playing is much less. Also, if he strays too far from the Lyre the music becomes overwhelmingly painful until he and it are rejoined, so he must carry it with him always.
The Lyre does have some good properties. Though it is made of gold it is incredibly hard and seemingly indestructible. The strings, thin and delicate though they are, can be cut but will quickly reform. Its most potent ability, however, is its effect on Blighted creatures. It seems they too are susceptible to its magics and when they hear it they almost always go into a deep trance allowing Orpheus to escape or bash their heads in with his instrument.
Orpheus the Argonaut Edit
Orpheus continued to wander after receiving the Lyre because he knew no what else to do. it was some time later that he heard of a voyage being formed to seek the legendary Golden Fleece, a powerful item that might even be able to lift the Curse of the Blight.
Orpheus saw an opportunity. This might be his only hope at redemption. He valued his life up to that point as entirely worthless but maybe if he helped find the Fleece he could do something of value for the people he saw suffering around him. And maybe, just maybe, the Fleece could cure his affliction as well.
He sought out the Argo and found in Jason a man who was like a positive mirror to himself. Jason lived an breathed the idea that he could be a hero, that adventure was around every corner, and that anyone, even a cursed bard who could barely tell a ship from a seagull, could be a valued member of the crew.
It wasn't until the Argo was beset by the deadly and captivating song of the Sirens that Orpheus began to believe it too.