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Lord Berel Hestean

 

Almost one hundred years ago, the Hestean family was driven from Ravens Bluff amidst charges of black sorcerery and trafficking with demons.  House Ivallneer spearheaded the accusations and gained an alliance of Hawkynfleur, Yarvander, and Quelemter lords to support their charges.  Other nobles were whispered to be supporting House  Ivallneer, but they stayed in the shadows.  The reason  for the three Houses to openly support the Ivallneer's was simple.  Lorwayne Hestean, the House head at that time, was a well known critic of those families and the Ivallneer's for their questionable business practices and less than noble attitudes.  The Ivallneer family had a better motivation...they wanted the Hestean lands.

The Ivallneer's brought the charges forward, using the testimony of a serving girl that once worked for the Hesteans.  A conclave of nobles was called to hear her evidence.  Lorwayne protested the innocence of his family, but in the end was found guilty of all charges.  The sentence was exile from the burgeoning Ravens Bluff for Lorwayne and his family.  All Hestean lands were auctioned, with the main estate being purchased by the Ivallneer's.  The various farmlands were bought by the other noble houses, divided and rented to farmers moving into the area.  All the Hesteans left with was what they could carry in their carriage and an unknown amount in jewels and gold, hidden inside Lorwayne's bag of holding.

Deciding to start anew, Lorwayne traveled to the small hamlet of Thall and purchased two hundred acres of farmland.  He built a small manor home began to rent out the land to farmers.  The Hestean family was loved by the townsfolk because of their friendly nature and their desire to help Thall grow.  While they would never grow wealthy in Thall, the Hesteans built a life for themselves in the small community.  

Lord Berel Hestean is the only male member of the family left.  His two sisters married and moved away from the Vast.  His parents passed away ten years ago, leaving the young Hestean the manor home and two hundred acres of rental farmland.  Though only in his twenties when he became head, and only member, of the House, Hestean possessed a patience unknown to most.  He desired a return to Ravens Bluff and the reclamation of the family lands.  To raise money for those endeavors, Berel invested in a small shipping concern out of the Bluff.  Over the space of five years, it grew larger and brought in more business, filling Hestean's coffers all the while.  

The biggest hurdle to a return to Ravens Bluff was passed a year ago.  The serving wench who testified against his family recanted her testimony and placed the blame at the doorstep of the Ivallneers for the Hestean fall before she passed at the ripe old age of one hundred and twenty.  The Hestean name was cleared and the estate lands returned to Berel Hestean.  The downside to this is that the estate lands are still occupied by the Ivallneer family.  They retreated into seclusion over twenty years ago and are never seen except for the occasional House carriage trundling down the road to the estate late at night.  Rumors run rampant as to exactly what happens at the secluded estate, but so far no one from the Bluff has been brave enough to look into it.  The Ivallneers keep to themselves and the Council of Lords ruled that it was up to Berel to kick them off his lands now that they were rightfully his.

Today Berel is thirty two years old and still possessed of the trademark good looks of the Hestean name.  He is close to realizing his dream of returning to Ravens Bluff and reclaiming his lands.  He slowly builds the membership of his House, with Lady Shera becoming his master at arms, and Avery acting as his squire.  Plans are in place for a group of House guard to be established in the coming spring.  Once that happens, he hopes to acquire the help of Shera and her Fellowship friends to reclaim his estate and cement his place in Ravens Bluff.