According to the laws of Vallor, “Not a single ship bearing the pirate flag may enter the harbor of the Free City”. Many pirate captains who were smart enough to understand the nuances of such wording simply removed the Jolly Roger, when entering the harbor. The pirates paid well for their stay, brought with them many goods, and, in general, were quite beneficial to the city. In turn, the guards looked away when the question of a lack of a flag and trading licenses came.
Amongst such captains was Rosalinda’s father. His ship often harbored at the Free City after raiding trade vessels of the Empire. The young pirate fell in love with a young apprentice of the Guild of Jewelers and, rather quickly, won her heart with expensive gifts and tales of wondrous far-away lands. Soon, they had a daughter.
The girl grew up surrounded by riches, but not love. Family life quickly became dull to the pirate. His infatuation passed, only daily routine remained. Rosalinda’s father went off into sea more and more often and for longer periods of time, while his wife sought comfort and consolation in the latest parlors, having completely forgotten about the girl. Rosalinda tried in vain to win over the love of her mother by learning proper etiquette and reading the latest fashion articles, learning dance and foreign languages…
As she grew older Rosalinda tried to become part of her mother’s world – she took part in lavish audiences with her mother in the Guilds’ palaces, made many acquaintances in the gaming parlors. But even the secret tricks of manipulating people, which the girl learnt from card players and courtesans were useless. Mother and daughter remained completely aloof and were strangers to each other.
The only thing left for Rosalinda, was to await her father’s return. She could spend hours listening to his tales of distant lands and adventures. The captain was her hero and the daughter dreamed of being worthy of him. In time, rather than fashion and dancing, she started to dedicate more and more time to fencing and studying maps.
The epitome of this family drama became the crusade of the Empire upon Vallor. The marshal-protector Roland the Proud convinced the pirates to side with him instead. Amongst the ships that besieged the Free City, Rosalinda recognized the caravel of her father. Having understood that she had been betrayed by both her parents, she ran away from home on that very day and signed up for the militia.