((Note: Please do not use any of the information listed to use in-character unless legitimately acquiring it through roleplay means.))
The Bursnell family settled the region along with some of the first settlers that broke away from the ancient Arathor Empire. While not particularly important politically, the family was well-known throughout the region due to being very magically inclined as well as having a fair sum of gold.
In later decades, the family has fallen away from their magical privledge. On occasion, gifted witches and wizards still rise, for both Victoria and Jessamine. Hesmin seems to have inherited the trait as well, being able to imbued his crossbow bolts, arrows and bullets with arcane auras.
Hesmin was born on the 13th of October in Gilneas City to both Victoria, a stay-at-home mother and Almerac Bursnell, a guardsman. At the time of his birth, his uncle Albert Bursnell and aunt, Theodosia Bursnell were also present. He was an exceedingly curious baby, and often remarked as being more on the quiet and reserved side. Two years later, his younger sister by the name of Jessamine Bursnell was born.
As both he and his sister grew from infants into toddlers and toddlers into children, the arcane magic running through Jessamine's blood became apparent. Often times, random things would begin to set themselves on fire, while other times levitation occurred. Even at such a young age, this was the beginning of the tensions within their household. Almerac highly mistrusted any types of magic, after having first-hand seen the dangers of it during a time of war, and strictly banned any usage or speaking of it.
Though not being magically gifted himself, Hesmin was often the front line for his younger sister and came to her defense on nearly every occasion. his repeated rebellious attitude and nature against both of his parents only increased the uncomfortability in the strained family relationship- though increased the strength of the bond between himself and Jessamine even further.
At the age of six, he was enrolled in one of Gilneas' numerous schools in the city. A few years later, his younger sister also joined. Though growing up in a somewhat chaotic enviornment, he seemed to excell in his school work and had an especially apparent talent for fields such as music as well as literature.
However, as he took on the years and became an adolescent, his days became less focused on reports and tests and more on keeping his sister safe from the other schoolyard bullies. On multiple occasions he was brought to the attention of the Headmaster and on nearly every occasion it ended in some type of corporal punishment; though, no amount of pain or punishment barred him from standing up for Jessamine which resulted in his expulsion from school at the young age of 17. As he struggled to make a name for himself, carrying out odd jobs here and there throughout the gloomy city, he quickly found himself a member of the small-time gang known as the Black Daggers. Facing hostility on nearly every side of his life, it eventually came to a head when both he and his father came to blows after witnessing him ruthlessly beat Jessamine while intoxicated.
At the court hearing to decide his punishment and confinement in the Gilneas City Prison, his uncle proposed the alternative choice that instead he be relocated to his farm where he would have his personality reformed. Whether by luck or destiny, the judge agreed.
A mere two years after being shipped from Gilneas City to the small sea-side town of Stormglen to live with his aunt and uncle, the Northgate Rebellion sent hidden recruitment agents to enlist him and his uncle in the fight. Though his uncle declined, he was more than happy to join in and fight the King's forces as he saw the Greymane Wall as a tool of cowardice.
Although the rebel forces were rag-tag and loose at best, it was here he quickly learned how to properly fight and came to favor weapons such as the rapier, firearm and even the crossbow.
Remarkably, he suffered no serious or crippling wounds and left service partway through the war after his aunt and uncle's plea.
Gilnean Hunting Society
After leaving service of the Northgate Rebels, Albert took the now adult Hesmin to a secluded gathering of number of Gilneas' most reknowned and skillful hunters of darker creatures and magics, all part of an organization casually refered to as the Gilnean Hunting Society (also just The Society between member), though the proper name was the Gilneas Hunting Society of Dark and Untrustworthy Creatures and Magic.
Though not officially documented on form or legal paperwork, the society did have it's own structure. At the head of the guild was the Lodge Master, then two Stewards, Senior Members, Society Members, Junior Members and then the Untested. It was here that both men and women skilled in combat and of a hearty resolve and intelligent mind were taught the art of tracking Azeroth's most dark of creatures, such as ghosts, summoned demons and even more releveant- worgen.
The primary goal was to exterminate all sources of evil and heartless magic, conjurers of the standard and accepted arcane arts were allowed in, as well as members of the clergy. The source of all this information regarding hunting and exterminating, came from a book known simply as the Index, which was written by a hermit-witch known as Thellena Beechworth. Though not an active participant in any of the hunts, she was a founding member well before the Greymane Wall was constructed.
With the guidance of his uncle (who held the rank of Steward), he quickly ascended from Untested to Junior Member and then to a proper Society Member in a matter of a year or two. The trial that awarded him the rank of Society Member was successfully tracking and killing a rogue mage turned demon summoner. While one of the younger members of the organization, he was well respected due to his almost uncanny investigation skills, proficient skills with a crossbow and gun, and his leadership qualities.
Worgen Outbreak and Forsaken Invasion
With Gilneas as a whole weakened by the ongoing civil war, the townspeople were easy prey for the rampaging worgen that steadily grew unchecked by any official authorities. A handful of infections from the worge turned into an entire households, towns and eventually the majority of the nation were reduced to mindless, heartless beasts.
The Gilneas Hunting Society was also heavily involved in the culling of many worgen, though the sheer number of them was something that not even the experienced hunters could handle. Eventually, facing overwhelming odds, they were forced to disband the organization as the remaining survivors scattered to the four winds, in search of their own individual safety. Hesmin and Albert made haste to their farmstead, when a lone rampaging worgen took them by surprise, biting Hesmin in the process. Now infected, he bid a tearfilled farewell to the people who had come to be the true parents that he had always sought.
As he ran into the forest to isolate himself from the larger camps of survivors, he stumbled into Jessamine. Already in a fragile state of mine, as she beheld the bandaged bite marks on his forearm, she took off into the northern headlands. Hesmin gave chase, trying to calm her down and ushering her in the opposite direction, though it was too late. Unfortunately, they had both ran into a Forsaken infiltration group, whose canines ripped Jessamine to shreds in a matter of moments, however, Hesmin fled to the safety of a nearby grove.
The death of his sister and farewell to his aunt and uncle wrought too much sorrow on his heart, and it was this crushing defeat that brought on his complete transformation. Some lingering parts of him remained, forcing him into a depressed state- much different from the other bloodthirsty worgen. At this time, a small raven adorned with a red sash landed near him and oddly enough, deemed itself his guardian.
He was quickly losing himself to the feral instincts of the beast that held tight onto his soul, but he was not too far gone. As the Royal Chemist concoted a syrum to temporarily grant sanity back to those afflicted, he was caught roaming through an abandoned house, restrained, and injected with this miracle liquid. As he regained the familiar memories of his life and leading up to the recent events, the painful loneliness and survivor's guild was all that could be felt. He did, however, take solace in comfort of his new raven companion, which he named Astona.
The kaldorei druids of Teldrassil offered the Gilnean people an opportunity to fully restore their choice over their forms, one of which he gladly partook of. Afterwards, he boarded one of the many vessels which sailed to capital of Darnassus.
Immigration to Duskwood and Stormwind
After arriving from Darnassus to Stormwind, he took on many odd jobs and opportunities, again seeming to resort back to a time before stability. He heard of a dark, grim region of Stormwind's territory known as Duskwood. He also heard the tales of it's similarity to Gilneas, and he quickly boarded a travelling caravan to find out.
Once there, he assimilated with the superstitoius townsfolk, which at first he found quite strange and peculiar... though as the days grew into months, he soon understood why. With all manner of dark creatures roaming the landscape, he soon found purpose again as a hunter of the obscure and a protector alongside an organization known as the Borderland Coalition. It was in this community that he made a few friends, though not seemingly for long. For a reason still unknown to him, all of the members seemed to vanish... at once, leaving him without yet again.
Quickly becoming bitter and cynical, he returned to Stormwind in hopes of finding other leads regarding bad-willed creatures and people. His search kept him in the city for many months, in which time he developed meaningful- if fleeting friendships. Although many of his friends soon vanished, as did the Coalition, a night elven woman by the name of Melsina Moonstone was a constant that he could latch onto for some semblance of stability. They quickly formed a tight friendship, and she helped to ease him back into the light and optimism.
One night lead him to a bar known as the Pig and Whistle, in the Old Town district of Stormwind. When ordering his usual, a glass of red wine, he met a highly bubbly and intelligent woman by the name of Snowyn. Unbeknownst to the both of them, she would play perhaps the greatest role in restoring the strength of the person he once was. They were both highly interested in one another, and eventually lead to Hesmin proposing to take her to Lakeshire for a romantic date.
Snowyn and Hesmin fell both quickly in love and through casual conversation, both the topic of Hesmin's involvement with the Gilnean Hunting Society and Snowyn's involvement with a cult themed organization known only as BLANK. Though they couldn't be more opposite to one another in terms of profession, their mutual feelings of love blinded them otherwise.
Curious about the whereabouts of his Society members, as well as the fabled Index that held their monster-hunting information, Hesmin and Snowyn both travelled north back to Gilneas. With the area still being heavily contested, their time was limited to a matter of days, though it was there that he showed her the various places of his life, including the house he had grown up in alongside his sister.
Going off intuition, Hesmin lead the both of them to the Blackwald, an ancient and dark forest that was home to the druidic rituals that restored the Gilnean peoples' sanity. Deep within, they stumbled upon what Hesmin recognized as Thellenas house, and one of the many meeting places of the Gilneas Hunting Society. On the floor was a beheaded body, and clutched in her arms was the Index. As Hesmin reached to pick it up and flip through the pages, a terrible pain shot through his nerves, and cuts appeared along his forearms. The both of them frightened, and Hesmin in mild shock from blood loss, they returned to their safehouse in the abandoned Keel Harbor, returning to Stormwind the next day.
As he held onto the Index, morbid and grotesque hallucinations began to plague him, as well as whispers and at times- outright disembodied screaming. Determined to uncover what exactly had made the book so cursed, he enlisted the help of Melsina Moonstone as well as a number of other associates, with Snowyn preoccupied with organization affairs in the northern Alterac Mountains.
The group met in Lakeshire to discuss the Index, as well as the possibility of Melsina opening it to evoke some sort of reaction. Indeed, as she opened it, no cuts formed along her skin, only a vision. In the vision, was the sight of a horrific and large worgen, surrounded by smouldering houses and ruins of a town. With the vision ended, she relayed this information to the rest of the group members presence. It was agreed that she would be used as a conduit to attempt to invoke any evil spirits contained in the volume, in the abandoned camp of the Badlands Hunting Society, a sister guild to Hesmin's own.
When the book was opened in the Badlands, out came the worgen from Melsina's vision. The group killed the beast, who turned out to be a fellow hunter from the Gilneas Hunting Society by the name of William. From his body, they pulled a blue crystal, which also held a vision: he and an unknown woman laying waste to a small, backwater village of Lordaeron known as Fallowsbreath.
During the preparation period for their next campaign, Hesmin learned of the death of Snowyn via her ghost in the forests west of Stormwind City. Heart broken and furious, he promised her spirit that he would find the source of the curse on the Index. Having become obsessed with his oath, his relationship with Melsina deterorated more and more, and on one evening it made itself apparent. Feeling angered and betrayed, she confronted him (with a good deal of prodding on his side) about his apathetic state. Revealing Snowyn's death made instant sense, and she confessed to having feelings of love for Hesmin and angered that it had never been mutual. Though. she was willing (if a bit cynical- and rightly so) to try and fix the friendship and help him uncover the truth of the Index.
With Fallowsbreath next on their sights, the group travelled there. The town held true to the vision of the crystal, nothing more than a few charred buildings with corpses. As they searched for clues, more and more ravens becan to flock to their location. Upon meeting the spirit of a man who was sacrificed in a ritual, the ravens shapeshifted into the townsfolk who had been gruesomely rearranged into human-bird hybrids, which the group was forced to fight off. At the end of the battle, a violet colored crystal was produced at the site of the sacrifice, which held a vision that pointed to the Swamp of Sorrows.
Feeling guilty for the repeated trouble and grief he had been causing Melsina, he gradually began to distance himself from the group until he and he alone took the bull by the horns. Following the trail second crystal, he had been lead to Swamp of Sorrows, where he was lead to a crazed member of the Badlands Hunting Society, who he was forced to slay to obtain the third and final crystal, a jagged and red formation.
Now in possession of all three of the crystals, as well as the Index, his goal was in sight. However, the constant hallucinations, endless paranoia and insomnia continue to plague and sap any remnant of life that he once had, even after Snowyn's death. His promise to her to solve the Index's mystery turned into a deathwish in the final battle, which he knew was to come. He enlisted the help of a travelling mage-woman by the name of Silloa Stillpond, and after a short amount of time spent together- revealed herself to be Snowyn, her soul transfered to another body with the use of a soulstone heart.
Revitalized, the breath of life was once again restored into his person. The two of them, unable to arrange the crystals in a fashion to open the Index, travelled to Dustwallow Marsh in search of the ruins of the Dustwallow Marsh Hunting Society. It was there, Snowyn's soulstone heart detected the lingering spirit of another man who was sacrificed, and the vision of the same mysterious woman who sacrificed him. The two resolved to recreate the sacrifical rune in hopes of stirring up some sort of energy. Instead, once they did so, Astona the raven landed in the middle of the chalk lines. By coincidence, the Index acted as a connection point for Snowyn and the raven, who was Jessamine's halved soul in a different body. She explained her knowledge of the Index, as well as the formation and bindings that must be formed to open it. After Jessamine was done speaking, she reverted to her raven body, causing Snowyn to inform Hesmin with some tears that the raven was her deceased sister, all along.
Snowyn and Hesmin contracted the help of both a dwarven smith and a mage, who crafted the bindings for the crystals. With those made, they returned to the Badlands Camp and set about opening the cursed book. Each crystal let out a different noise, each resembling a specific type of emotional babbling. One shouting, one envious and the third sorrowful. Slowly, from a portal created by the crystals, Thellena Beechworth emerged, bristling with unnatural and shadow magics. The battle ensued, ending with Hesmin finishing off the witch with a crossbow bolt to her forehead. After her death, the weight was lifted both from Hesmin's shoulders, as well as the Index. The curse was lifted, and the book could be used again as a source of information.
Hesmin shares many of the same characteristics of his father, being of average height and a head of thick black hair. While muscular, he lacks the burly physique that secured his father as an effective guardsman. As was the custom inside Gilneas City, he kept his hair fairly short, but when he moved to his aunt and uncle's farmstead, allowed it to grow out to about shoulder-length and grew a light beard as well. While hunting the Index and the crystal keys that made up it's curse, his hair and beard grew even longer. He inherited his mother's deep brown eyes, instead of his father's blue.
As a worgen, he doesn't look stunningly different in comparison to any of the others. His claws are a great deal shorter than most, and whether they are intentionally kept short to better allow the usage of guns and crossbows or are simply that way is uncertain.
He has a tattoo of a dagger on his left bicep, from the time he joined the Black Dagger city gang.
On his right forearm are a row of circular marks, where he was bitten and infected with the worgen curse.
Personality and Traits
Hesmin is a very brave and loyal individual, though at times can be extremely sarcastic and cynical.
As a boy, he had an especially bad habit for getting into all sorts of trouble, and his quick-thinking and even quicker speaking mouth often landed him in even more trouble than he bargained for, ending up with numerous black eyes and broken bones. Even then, he had a sense of duty to protect his friends and family from harm.
He is known by his friends to be a very laid back and friendly character once given the time to properly warm up and form a bond of trust in the relationship. Though, even some of his oldest friends and comrades remark about his especially reserved and mysterious nature, regarding his upbringing and anothing more in-depth than what he does in his spare time.
While not an overly curious man, he does possess a good amount of intelligence. This trait combined with his uncanny sense of intuition and gut instincts leads him to be a very capable and efficient detective.
He is willing to go through great sacrifices to prevent his friends from being harmed, often in the extreme as he did with the final crystal of the Index, where he exiled himself away, even with possibly being killed and the investigation rendered a failure.
To say he's a peaceful man is somewhat incorrect. He prefers to settle a dispute or problem with words rather than weapons, though he's not afraid to partake in violence. On some occasions, he even seems to become involved happily and with a certain bloodlust. Whether this is a result of the worgen curse or a flaw in his character is unknown.
He can tend to be a very vengeful person, often viewing the world with an 'eye for an eye' attitude, and eager to make both of the parties involved the victim.
Magical Abilities and Skills
Jessamine BursnellThe younger sister to Hesmin Bursnell, his relationship with her is something to be expected from an older brother. Protective and caring, he often stood up in her defense against both their abusive father, as well as the brutish bullies of the schoolyard. More often than not, the two got along favorably, though they often argued about the purpose of the Greymane Wall, and whether or not the decision was a good one. She would often purchase novels for him to read as a gift, and in turn he would buy her a favorite treat- strawberry icecream.
More of a woman to stay back rather than involve herself with a fight, after the horrific incident of burning down the Bursnell household in a fit of rage, she still resolved to learn to control her magical abilities and is a great scholar in her own right, which was demonstrated even in raven formwhen she explained the Index key formation.
During the battle with Thellena Beechworth, it was revealed that she unintentionally lead Hesmin to How this was accomplished remains somewhat of a mystery. It's been hinted at a handful of times that tome she was given while prisoner at Gilneas City Prison might be connected, a book which also taught her how to split her soul and store it inside a raven's body- ensuring she would live on after her first "death."
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