Samuel Frisk was born Samuli Lahti in a small Vestenmannavnjar fishing community outside of Kivik, Eksjö. His father was a fisherman, as was his grandfather, great-grandfather, and so on. Samuli dreamed of breaking the “family curse” of fishing. He heard stories of the Vendel Merchants, of those who could decide what they wanted to do with their lives. Where Samuli only saw the shackles of tradition with his family he saw freedom with the Vendel League. When he came of age he told his father of his intentions to move to Kivik and begin apprenticing with a Vendel merchant. Samuli expected his father to be proud… but instead they fought. Samuli wouldn’t speak to his father again until the old man lay dying.

Upon arriving in Kivki he took the surname Frisk to distance himself from his family. He began apprenticing with a local physician and had a natural aptitude for healing. His master, Hugleikr Rask, was one of the few new-wave doctors that believed in diagnosis and not simple treatments. As such, Samuli was encouraged to study the latest medical texts and was a fast study.

In time, Hugleikr retired and Samuli took over his practice. It was in his first year when the Jarl of Kivik came to him and asked for advice on dealing with an illness. A plague was spreading through the Vestenmannavnjar fishing camps nearby and the Jarl was worried about Kivki’s safety. Samuli, still resentful of his upbringing, told the Jarl, “The plague will run it’s course out there and never touch our homes.” The Jarl reluctantly agreed with the doctor’s advice and the city of Kivik did nothing.

Then Samuli received a letter from his mother. The plague had reached his home village and his father was very sick. His mother feared for her family’s health but knew his father would never ask for Samuli’s return. She begged for Samuli to come home. She had heard that her son was a doctor and knew he could save his father’s life. Samuli ignored the first couple letters, but by the third reluctantly agreed. Not thinking he’d be gone long set out in secret to see to his family.

Samuli’s efforts were in vain though as his father only grew worse. As Samuli sat by the bed, watching a fever eat away at this father, the old man turned to him. “I forgive you, son. Please. Don’t let me die without my son’s love.” Samuli, still bitter, looked down at his father. “You forgive me? I did nothing wrong!”, he exclaimed. His father shook his head weakly, “I forgive your ignorance too. Please. Son. Stop hating me. If only for my last minutes.” Samuli’s resolve broke and he slumped in his chair. “Ok. Father.” He took his dying father’s hand and as the old man faded from life whispered, “I love you, father. I always have and always will. Even when I’ve hated you. I’ve always loved you.”

By the time his father passed his sister was sick. Again, his mother begged him to stay and Samuli agreed. Then his brothers grew sick and finally his mother. Samuli stayed for months to tend to his family and, eventually, the rest of his village. Luckily, Samuli seemed immune but out of the hundreds who lived there only five others survived the plague. In the end, Samuli gathered up the five others and agreed to help move them to Kivik.

Except Kivik wasn’t as welcoming as Samuli expected. It turned out that while he was away the plague reached the city. Their only doctor was missing and the Jarl’s son fell ill. The Jarl was outraged with Samuli abandoning his post and terrifying of the “plague bearers” Samuli returned with. The Jarl thought that Samuli had somehow started the plague in order to drive up the price of his services. Fearing for his life, Samuli fled in shame to Kirk. Later he would hear that Kivik was decimated by the plague, adding to Samuli’s guilt of inaction and abandonment a feeling that he should have died with all his friends and family.

When he arrived in Kirk he was given a chance to explain his actions to the League. Recognizing his skill and understanding his motivations, the League “encouraged” Samuli to look for work outside of the Vestenmannavnjar. Samuli knew what this meant. He’d never be accepted somewhere that could hear about his failure at Kivik, but a foreign nation won’t care about Vestenmannavnjar fishing villages or an angry Jarl. With deep sadness and regret, Samuli took the League up on their offer. He moved to Eisen, knowing he could never return home.

When Samuel arrived in Eisen the War of the Cross, in it’s twentieth year, had taken a toll on nation. He knew a good doctor wouldn’t be turned away and even his past caught up to him, his crimes would be overlooked. He was barely in Eisen a month when he was offered a chance to enlist and serve the Eisen Army as a field medic. Samuli, not having any other options, agreed and was enlisted as Samuel Frisk. The Eisen recruiter changing his name to “avoid confusing the troops.” Samuel served on several fronts, mostly after the main fighting, and traveled most of the country. The War had two huge effects on Samuel’s life. First, it taught him how to fight. Second, and perhaps more importantly, it made him into an Objectionist.

After being caught in an unexpected skirmish Samuel’s comrades decided they couldn’t afford having anyone with them that couldn’t fight. One of his friends gave him an old axe as a joke, saying “The Vesten don’t know how swords work, right?” Samuel was embarrassed but then he took to the weapon. Slowly the joke became reality and, to this day, Samuel doesn’t know how to wield a sword.

Ideologically, the War of the Cross was between the Vaticines and Objectionists for the soul of the Church. While Samuel had known of the Church, the War having started before he was born, being part of the conflict helped him understand the Faith. When he arrived he didn’t have much interest in the ideology. He saw himself as a doctor in a war, nothing more. Then, after fighting alongside Eisen Objectionists, Samuel converted to their faith.

For ten years Samuel toured Eisen; bandaging the wounded, tending to the dying, burying the dead, and performing last rites. When the war ended, Samuel traveled to Freiburg intent on opening his own practice again. The problem was that he wasn’t the only medic to think of that. Some of them were even backed by the Vendel League. The League prohibited him from practicing in Freiburg but allowed he to assist other League doctors. This helped make ends meet for a time but Samuel began sending out word to find a town in need of a doctor.

A year ago word reached him of the efforts to rebuild Five Sails. Samuel encouraged the League to back him as a physician and set about creating a clinic. Most of the paperwork was done remotely, with Samuel still assisting doctors in Freiburg until his practice could open in Five Sails. The League handled most of the contracts six months later Samuel began his move to Five Sails.

After four months on the road, Samuel arrived in Five Sails and set about establishing himself. After meeting with the other members of the Vendel League operating in Five Sails he learned of an upcoming election. After a little research Samuel threw his support behind a candidate, and convinced the League to support his pick too. While having the League’s backing helped, the Mayor’s election really helped elevate Samuel into the political ring.

During the campaign he met a few other individuals as well, and learned of a social club called the Kindred Spirits. Samuel, remembering his father and grandfather building a moonshine still in the barn, decided the Spirits would be a good group to network with. He recreated his family recipe the best he could, built his own still, and used the potency of his moonshine to gain acceptance in the Kindred Spirits.

Now in his thirty-first year of life, Samuel has begun reflecting back. He regrets throwing away his heritage and has begun quietly reintroducing his old life. He named his clinic Áki Klinikka after his late father. He’s privately given up his Objectionist beliefs and returned to the rituals of the Aesir Pantheon his family believed in. Though he still maintains the facade of being an Objectionist for business reasons. He’s even taken up recreational fishing. Still, more than anything, Samuel longs to return home to Kivik. He keeps his ears open to see if the Jarl he wronged ever dies or if the stories of the plague fade away.

Theme Song

Never Make It Home by Split Lip Rayfield

Well the wind it is a’blowin’ and I haven’t seen the sun
I ain’t seen much anything about a month or so
Coulda been much different, yeah, Momma she told me so
I never shoulda listened to the things she didn’t know

I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]

Well I had a chance to be someone I never been before
Took his clothes and wallet and I left him on the floor
I always thought it would be so damn easy to be free
Sing myself a different tune the Man came down on me

I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]

These bars are old and this room is cold an’ I’m out of cigarettes
Sleep is so elusive and my clothes are soakin’ wet
I think about my sin and as I make my final trek
It won’t make no difference with that rope around my neck

I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [Swim that muddy water]
I don’t think I’ll ever make it home [To feel the bright sunshine]

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