Uneasy Lies the Head
Nobility of Neu Ungren
Three years out of date – most notably outdated due to death of Kurfurst-Duke Gergely (from natural causes) and his replacement with Rikard Benedek
- Kurfurst-Duke Ferentz Martilus (115 ?) Mayor
- Dominic Severus (72) Grandson and heir
- Ambros Severus (65) Grandson, head of “internal affairs”
- Basil Ambros (47) Great grandson, one of the more active followers
- Adamel Ferentz (32) Great-great grandson, military man, Rikard’s friend
- Martiulus Falkus (27) Great grandson, jovial drinker, Rikard’s friend
- Pfaltzgraff Lazslo (69)
Dean of nobility, Lazslo Imre is one of the great feudal lords of the Donetz plains. While he suffers as most of the others do from the drought the sheer number of estates held by Imres under allegiance both to Timosvar and Neu Ungren is large enough to be insurance against most disasters. Over the time Imres have also invested heavily into the city and are probably most mercantile of all the Neu Ungren nobility baring possibly the Kurfurst Duke himself.
Somewhat pompous and set in his ways, Lord Imre is still rather shrewd businessman. His thrift equally reflected on his family style as on his business dealings.
- Ida (65)
Plazgravina follows both her husband’s wishes and her own heart in running the quiet non ostentatious household despite the significant wealth. She is doing a large part of the domestic tasks herself keeping the need for the servants to the minimum. Very religious and devoted to the Cillitian order she spends significant amount of time in the Father Jacupo’s church although she does not volunteer in his hospice. As she is, through her mother, related to the Tokolies and, through her grandmother, to the Gergelies the present war troubles her greatly.
- Ilonka (34)
Given that Lord Imre had no sons of his own, the ancient Magyr custom of Domazet was invoked under which the second son of a lesser noble house is invited to marry one of the daughters and take the Imre name producing the grandson who would inherit the titles and land. The choice fell on Abel Hoffman, capable third son of Maurice Hoffman, Lord Imre’s long standing business partner and on Ilonka, eldest of the daughtes. Dutiful and obedient Ilonka has done her best never to remind her husband that he is not the full master of his own household. While her marriage was arraigned by the families it has turned into a loving affair, particularly reinforced by the mutual grief at the death of their first son at the hands of the demon. Ilonka is one of the more perceptive members of the Imre household inheriting her father’s business sense but not his buffoonery.
- Kata (26)
Shallowest of the Imre daughters Kata wishes for nothing more then the opportunity to dress well and mingle with the Neu Ungren’s rich and beautiful. Being intelligent she has realized early on what sort of behavior is most likely to get her what she wants and so she has perfected the role of a dutiful and conservative daughter to Imre. This has won her relative freedom and sizable allowance by the standard of the stingy Imre household. It has also earned her enmity of her elder sister who has long ago seen through her game. She was engaged to marry younger of Hoffman’s sons thus ensuring that the households be entirely merged after old Maurice’s death. Fact that Ferdinand died in the Witches’ war did not disturb her unduly as she likes the position of an unmarried daughter of the Dean of Nobility.
- Natalia (17)
Imre’s late born daughter has until recently been the apple of his eye. Loved and spoiled as much as Platzgraff have ever allowed himself to love and spoil anyone she has grown into naïve if intelligent young woman. Her world shattered when she allowed herself a sexual indiscretion with young and dashing Marko Santoni. After a period of ostracism she is now slowly being readmitted to the family. Her talks with Weasel and excursions beyond the confines of Imre mansion are starting to give her some very unconventional ideas about the world and her place in it.
- Capetan Imperialus, Pfaltzgraff Garos (52)
Great war hero of his generation Garos never grew into the role of either head of the family or even that of a Manor holder with feudal rights and responsibilities. After the death of his wife, failure of his estates and his brief bout with alcoholism, only strand that kept him connected to Neu Ungren was love for his daughter Illona. After his fate got connected to that of the party and he found the worth guardian for Illona in Margraff Bravd he set out again for a life of Mercenary under the command of Lajos Horozi and the Sanguine Order. As the officer of the Order he distinguished himself in the Battle of the Barges and the Mabbon Battle that ended the Witches’ war. After a temporary stay in Neu Ungren he intends to go back north with Sanguin Order.
- Lady Illona (20)
Perhaps the best looking girl of her generation in the city, Illona suffers from a similar problem of focus as her father. Brilliant at the sort of social games appropriate for the rich adolescents; she is unsatisfied with her life as a wife of David Espierie despite later’s demonstrated devotion, riches and high social status.
- Markgraff Tuvor (53)
Head of the Second Century the “Butcher Graff” as he is known, is one of the most powerful nobles in the city. Less ideological then Imre he understands that his best interests are aligned with the Navigators of Neu Ungren. He is currently playing the waiting game in the struggle between the Mastellis and Bartolinies waiting for his price to increase before he commits to an alliance. I personal life he is not a most pleasant personality, rude whenever he can afford to be and aloof even with those he considers friends. While not physically violent in the manner of his eldest son he is still considered one of the worst employers by the servants on Nob hill.
Gabriella (Formerly Gabriela Kantor) (42)
Born into the minor nobility, lord Balas’ wife was overjoyed to be married so far above her rank. While it is not exactly clear what prompted the marriage two equally likely possibilities were the desire by Lord Tuvor to ensure himself a perfectly faithful wife as well as perfectly faithful client in Freiher Kantor. In both instances Kantors have delivered. Destiny to be married to one of the uglier Magyr women in the city probably was considered well worth it to Lord Balas.
One of the physically largest men in Neu Ungren, Kryzsoff Balas is used to being able to intimidate and abuse those who displease him. Violent and exceptionally rude in most circumstances he has already did some damage to his father’s delicate political game – being himself staunchly conservative. There are rumors that Tuvor intends to skip him in succession in favor of Velibor while leaving Kryzsoff a secure but no too large maintenance. If this indeed were the case it would contribute even further to the not so warm relationship between the brothers.
Most urbanized of the Balases Layos is nevertheless his father’s son when it gets to the customary Balas arrogance and disregard for those he considers underlings. However, he is intelligent enough to hide that facet of his personality in order to be able to develop and maintain connections throughout various walks of life in Neu Ungren. He runs the day-to-day affairs of the Lord Tuvor’s abattoirs as well as being the executor of most of his political maneuvering. He has barely concealed disdain for his older brother whom he considers a brute and his younger one whom he considers a rustic. He has just entered the marriage market with a dream of marrying into one of the powerful Navigatorial houses. His eyes are set on Zoe Ruggero despite her unconventional history but he would be satisfied with someone like Bea Mastelli or even Andrea Fugger. This marriage may well prove to be crucial for the final Balas decision concerning their alliances.
Youngest Balas brother has never had great love for Neu Ungren. With his sensitive lungs preventing him from spending long time in the swamp he was reared mostly on the Balas estate of Kolburg in the central Donetz. He enjoys the role of the stern but fatherly feudal lord and does not fancy at all coming to Neu Ungren even for a brief visit. There have been brief rumors that he was giving illicit support to the Tokolys in exchange for the opportunity to supplant his father and brothers as the lord of Kolburg in the case of Tokoly victory but those have – so far at least – proven unfounded.
Lord Tuvor’s daughter is much moved by the plight of the poor and downtrodden. Together with the death of her illicit fiancé at the hands of Kryzstof, this has made her wary of her family and more closely interested in working in Cilitian nunnery then any other lady her age. Decently looking, she has not shown any interest in getting married within her social circle. This is not likely to perturb her father much and he already has plans for her in a variety of his schemes including, as a possibility, even a marriage to Salvatore Mastelli himself.
Tolnay – Kun
- Markgravina Veronica (60)
Descendant of the Lord of Serpentine Veronica arrived to Neu Ungren at the age of 15 to attend the school at the Cillitian Convent. For a while a star on the social sky of the city and one of the most beautiful as well as most eligible girls of her generation. She had a reputation for un-attainability and despite glamorous social life she enjoyed it is almost certain that at 24 she came to the bed of her illustrious Tolnay husband a virgin. Although fundamentally happy, her marriage with Pelegrin Tolnay was marred by the sickness and childhood death of their first son and a subsequent miscarriage of the second. When Pelegrin himself succumbed to the disease dozen of years ago Veronica was left a widow and a guardian of the only Tolnay heir – her late born daughter Gertruda.
Veronica never wished to raise her daughter into a socialite on her own mould and it was only the influence of Illona, her closest friend, and later of Weasel as well as the participation in the infamous indiscretion with Marko Santoni that have put the Gertruda on the social map of the Neu Ungren youth. After the destruction of the most of the rest of the Kun family at the hands of Tokoly Gertruda finds herself the heir to the combined fortunes of Tolnays and Kuns – estates and privileges outmatching not only those of Imres and Balases but also those of such Ducal houses as Tokoly. Pregnant with Santoni bastard, her current focus is to gain control of her own marriage in question of both time and choice.
- Markgraff Jagod (52)
Imperial Ritter and holder of the Silver Line, Jagod Benedek is second only to Garos Serwosy in military record among the nobility of Neu Ungren. Together with the handful of Tokoly Loyalist he held against the Esthawan rebels in the siege of Timosvar for over two months before the fabled Serwosy charge brought the short lived respite. For this he was advanced from Landgraff to Markgraff by the Emperor himself as well as earned immense gratitude of the minor nobility and citizenry of Timosvar. Briefly, Emperor toyed with the idea of striping, not nearly so committed Lord Kun of his hereditary Majorship and bestowing it upon Benedek, but Jagod preemptively declined such honor despite the obvious financial benefits it would have brought to his family.
Although less idealistic then Serwosy, Benedek holds similar reverential attitude towards the Empire and the person of the Emperor. Strangely enough he is also excellent friend of the Dominic Gergely and staunch supporter of Major in the civic politics. Any insults towards Gergely’s in Benedek’s presence are met with the sharp rebuke.
Jagod was a strong man but the siege and the war wounds have left their mark on him and he lives in almost constant dull pain that makes it difficult for him to move around. Fact that he could not offer his military expertise to Gergely in this latest conflict grates on him enormously.
He remained good friend with Serwosy after the war, even after they have fallen on hard times. After the death of the Lady Serwosy it was Gabriela Benedek and Victoria Tolnay-Kun that briefly took care for little Illona while Garos was drinking himself into oblivion. Briefly both Garos and Jagod hoped that there might be a spark between two of their children but when Janos married in Pec and Rikards tendencies become clear that hope was abandoned.
Margravina Gabriela (formerly Gabriela Tokoly) (47)
A beauty in her day Lady Gabriela, paternal cousin to the present duke of Donetz, was a prize for the young Landgraff Jagod when he wooed her, over 30 years ago. It was only her being sixth daughter (without any brothers) of her father and therefore of poor dowry that made her at all eligible for the handsome knight. At any rate, what begun as a romantic affair blossomed into one of the happiest marriages among Neu Ungren nobility.
Fiercely loyal to her husband and children Gabriela is also quite intelligent woman imparting some of her shrewd political sense into her husband. It is known that it was for her sake that the Jagod called his banners to support Tokoly even before his liege lord of Neu Ungren. It is less well known that his decision to side with Gergely against her relatives in this latest war was also advised by Margravina.
Appreciator of books she is considered to have one of the finest collections of fictions, histories and travelogues in the City obtained at considerable expense from Pec itself.
Not having the means or the inclination to be one of the great society ladies like Isolda Hagori or (in her time) Wilhelmina Tolnay-Kun Margravina still dispatched her societal duties in orderly fashion. She worked hard to reconcile her husband and even some of the more open minded among his peers to her second son’s queer behavior
His father’s heir in more ways then one Janos was spending time in Pec when the last war broke out. His duties at the court made it impossible for him to rush back and join the army and he has only just arrived back to Neu Ungren. Stable young man of average looks he will quite likely provide fine lord to his fathers dozen or so estates and faithful husband to his diminutive Stagi-magyr wife whom he met and married during his sojourn. He married the intellectual tendencies of his mother and martial inclinations of his father and succeed in being decent intellectual and passable fighter without excelling in either. What worries Jagod immensely is the fact that under the influence of his wife he has dabbled in the Art of Alchemy while in Pec and has even brought back a Stagiri alchemist as a part of his household. Right now Janos is assembling his father’s bannermen into what will be hopefully core of Neu Ungren heavy cavalry in the later parts of the war.
Leda (formerly Leda Khyntior-Palliani) (29)
Despite her ancient pedigree (Khyntiors are recorded among the Stagiri nobility since before the Living God’s time) lady Leda was considered unmariagable until she met young Janos two years ago. Her looks can be charitably described as plain and her diminutive frame and boy-like hips and bosom indicate that she will have distinct difficulties bearing children. Furthermore her most non lady-like interest in alchemy and apocryphal theology marked her as undesirable wife. Lord Janos appeared stricken by her, however, ever since he met her at a social occasion in Pec. She is not liked among the small Benedek household that accompanied Lord Janos to Pec, mostly for her insufferable attitude. Some of the more superstitious among the servants have even started spreading the rumor that she had cast a charm on the young master and that was the reason he married her. What impact she will leave on her parents in law and the Neu Ungren society remains uncertain.
The custom among the peripheral nobility is to have eldest son remain close to home and get educated in running the estate and marital arts and have second born sent to court to learn the diplomacy and intermingle with the notables from across the empire. This was the faith of Rikard Benedek until the fate, with his generous help, decide to change it. Ever since his teens Rikard have shown how different he is from his dependable and calm brother and father. Armed with strong sense of morals and inexhaustible supply of energy he was a trouble maker ever since he beheld the world outside his manor. At 13 he unhorsed his father’s banerman with a quarterstaff when the men were to trample a field belonging to one of his villains. At 14 he almost drowned Lajos Salver-Chervez in Totbab in an unspecified quarrel. Furthermore he turned to be a sensual type, enjoying and almost flaunting the pleasures of the flesh much to the shame of his otherwise very conventional family. All of this would make him somewhat unsuitable but still bearable as his father’s representative to the emperor. When, at 17 however he decided that the pleasures of the flesh he enjoys involve other men rather then girls his father gave up and sent Janos instead.
From there on, relationship between Rikard Benedek and his family have been strained to say the least. On one hand his behavior continues to embarrass the family. He has been known to openly enter the family Neu Ungren mansion at the crack of dawn drunk out of his mind with makeup on his face and to enter strange unexplained fights with other nobs or navs and sometime even with common thugs. He has point-blank refused to learn to ride a horse, use a long sword or even practice in heavy armor. He has traveled to Barburata with his friend Elena Gian-Lorentzo Masteli and returned with some sort of psychedelic nuts that almost cost him his sanity. On the other hand he is masterful manorial lord for his father, strong and yet respected and even loved by the peasants. Excellent at economics he has increased the yields of two estates that have been entrusted to him by almost a half partially by better allocation of resources and partially by using his navigatorial contacts to considerably increase selling price for the produce.
Furthermore with his Glaive or Halberd he is one of the most capable fighters of the younger generation Neu Ungren nobility. He fought heroically in the Askari action earning himself the Neu Ungren star from the Major Gergely. Finally he is a noble soul that does not suffer injustice gladly and that is something his father does appreciate.
Borlobas (21) Youngest of Benedek sons Borlobas is closest in the family to his middle brother. Almost as hot headed as Rikard the two were so very much alike that old Jagod met the, otherwise scandalous, news of Borlobas’ affair with the engaged daughter of Graff Knap practically with relief. Besides that indiscretion, which fortunately for Borlobas did not end in anything more disastrous then Benedek’s paying half of the lady’s dowry he has proven himself reliable if somewhat disorderly son. Main point of difference between him and Rikard is that while Rikard is a stickler for clothing and good looks Borlobas is unrepentant slob, permanently looking more like a dock worker then a nobleman. In addition to sometimes following Rikard and Elena on their excursions in the underworld he has more committed interest in the lowly of Neu Ungren. Frequently he assumes fake identities and spends considerable time living in places such as cathedral or back-o-the-docks and is considered the greatest expert on the underclass among the Nobs. In this he is helped by the fact that he is uncommonly (for a magyr) short and that, for one his back-o-the docks accent is practically better then Weasels. He takes particular interest in the games and entertainment of the underclass and has several times partook in the dart competitions in “Horseman”, where Gratiano knows him under the name Vincenci. Another item of distinction of Borlobas is his excellent basso voice, one of the finest in Neu Ungren. He benefited greatly from the excellent singing master his mother obtained for him until the lesions got canceled about the time Rikards habits became known.
Mikolina (19) & Menyreth (18)
In a way the Benedek sisters were victims of their brothers’ wayward behavior. Although not strict by nature Jagod and Gabriela were terrified enough by the thought of the female versions of Rikard and Borlobas that they have encloistered the girls as much as the Imres or Hoffmans. As a result the two have grown into society girls and gossips extraordinaire much closer to their well bred peers then to their own brothers. Neither has inherited their mothers exceptional beauty but fortunately they are not alike the fat Borlobas either. Both are very interested in fashion and Menyreth has found talent for directing their house tailor into producing some of the best dresses for the Neu Ungren formal events. Both are eligible now and given their very high position in the society, as well as the fact that they are very much present in the public eye makes them topic of much gossip. Mikolina invoked a minor scandal by dancing with Marko Santoni on the last Fiesta di Patrizzi but there is no indication that there is anything else going between the two.
Lukac – the former marine man of the world, spendrell
- Landgraff Maurice (61)
Despite being almost a decade younger then Platzgraff Imre, with whom he frequently associates, Lord Maurice Hoffman looks like a much older man. His unkempt white hair deep set eyes and the scornful expression as well as rich but poorly maintained attire give him appearance of the hermit. While he shares Imre’s arrogance when it comes to the Nobility he is much less realistic then Platzgraff when it comes to the practical dealings. He despises the Navigators and everything they stand for and most of all the Timosar covenant. He truly considers the Neu Ungren a lair of sin and seduction, Gergely an abomination of nobility and such people as Salvatore Mastelli spawns of the Demiurge. It is unclear as to why he chooses to live in the Neu Ungren unless it is his feeling that he needs to take fight to the enemy and that it is cowardly for a true nobleman to retreat and hide at an estate. Ever since the childbirth death of his wife, 18 years ago, what little humanity and emotion there was has left him. He runs his household as a mixture of a religious penitentiary and a military camp with both of his sons raised in the cult of noble sacrifice for the empire – cult that is to eventually cost them their lives. Greatest victims, however, of his personality remain his three daughters.