So, this is my first Skyrim fic. I don't read any Skyrim stories, either... But while playing as my main file, a Nord named Rukla, I kept getting ideas of her life if she adopted my favorite little orphan, Runa. So... Here's chapter one. I'll be including different main quest lines. The Dark Brotherhood, definately. Possibly the Companions.
The life of Runa Fair-Shield
Runa Fair-Shield was six when her parents died. They were attacked by cave bears while coming home to Windhelm from a trip to Whiterun. Her mother had hidden her in a tree and told her to climb, be still, and wait. Minutes later, her mother had perished along with Runa's father.
Runa waited up in the tree for a day. She woke the next morning, sad and terrified. When she saw the bears were gone, she had jumped down from the tree and ran. Her small feet carried her miles in a few short hours. She stopped for nothing. Half way to Windhelm, she found a group of Stormcloaks. Her thin arms latched themselves around the first one she could reach, a woman that had only just joined the fight for Skyrim. All four of the traveling soldiers were startled by the child's appearence.
They were able to understand the child's quivering voice, but just barely. Two of them went in the direction she pointed, the other two brought her on to Windhelm. She led them timidly to her house.
Three months later, she was in the Riften Orphanage. She was the only girl there for the three years she suffered under Grelad the Kind. Daily beatings, barely any food, and the only kindness came from Constance or the other children, if at all. The only thing that Runa wanted was to be adopted. She saw one or two adoptions, but no one ever came to take her.
One day, Aventus Aretino ran away. Grelad was furious, even more so than the day the children had conspired to steal a sweet roll and share it. Everyone got double the beatings.
A few days after Aventus left, while Grelad was telling them they'd never get adopted (a weekly happenstance), a stranger came into the orphanage. She was wearing scaled armor, fur shoes, and an Amulet of Talos. She was a nord woman with blond hair brushed back, though not into a ponytail, and one braid framing the side of her face. She had war paint on as well; two blood red stripes going from around her eyes down her cheeks to end on her neck as points. Half covered by the paint was a scar under her eye on the left side of her face; a simple line.
She stood in the back as Grelad talked to them, frowning all the while. Once Grelad dismissed the children, Runa found herself approached by the woman. "Hello."
"Hi," Runa replied, a small smile on her face. Maybe this woman would adopt her.
"I'm Rukla," the woman spoke, giving Runa a smile and crouching to the child's level.
"Nice to meet you, Runa!" Rukla's smile grew. Runa liked this woman. She deserved a surname like "the Kind" much more than Grelad did. Of course, Grelad's surname was a joke. "Now, Runa. Who's Aventus Aretino?"
Runa frowned and explained who Aventus was. A part of Runa was angry that he had left the orphanage and left everyone else to bear the brunt of Grelad's anger. When she finished her explanation, she added in angrily "I hate it here. Grelod the Kind is the meanest person in all of Skyrim."
Rukla gave the child a sympathetic smile and reached into the bag in which she carried her things. She pulled out a sweet roll and handed it to Runa. "Here. And I promise I'll find a way to get you out of here, okay?"
"But Grelod won't-"
Rukla cut her off. "Don't worry. I'll find a way. Just wait, okay?"
Runa nodded enthusiastically, finding some hope.
Almost a week later, Runa only saw Rukla once more when she stopped in to say it'd be better soon. Runa, who in the days after the warrior woman had left, had felt her hope failing her again, found her spirits lifted once more.
It was only days after that when a surprised yell came from Grelod's bedroom one night. All five of the children, as well as Constance, rushed there to find out what happened. No one noticed the crouched figure fleeing the orphanage. On the floor by her bed, Grelod lay with her throat slit. The kids were all joyous at the death and even Constance held back a cautious joy after getting over the initial shock.
A few more days passed and the excitement of Grelod's death settled. Runa found herself wondering at Rukla's whereabouts and whether or not she had forgotten about the orphan. Her thoughts proved to be wrong when she heard speaking as she woke one morning.
"I'm sorry, but the children aren't up for adoption right now. You should go."
"I'm not going to leave." It was Rukla's voice. "All I want is to get Runa out of this place and into a good, safe home. I can provide that for her! My husband and I live in Whiterun, but we own another house here in Riften too! I can provide for her and raise her! She'd be happier with me!" Runa peaked around the corner from the sleeping quarters into the dining room. Rukla stood, in new armor this time, light armor that Runa didn't recognize. It was red and black and clung tight to the woman's figure.
"None of the children are getting adopted right now. I want things to die down a bit and I want to ensure each is entrusted to good people." Constance replied, almost growing angry, though her passive stance on things made her quiet.
"I am a good person. I'm a thane in more than one hold and I'm the Dragonborn! Isn't that enough?"
"Then explain that dark armor your wearing," Constance said coldly, referring to the Dark Brotherhood Armor that Rukla wore.
The Dragonborn scowled. "My sister gave me this armor. And I intend to wear it for what she intended. Protecting my family; Runa included."
"She's not up for adoption. End of story. You should leave." With that, Constance turned away.
Runa seized her chance and ran up to the woman trying to adopt her. "You really wanna adopt me?" she asked timidly, as if the question would change the answer.
Rukla saw the child and smiled. "Of course! And if Constance won't listen to reason, I'll go above her. I happen to know the Jarl. I'll be back in an hour, okay? Then you and I will leave for your new home in Whiterun." Runa nodded and Rukla bent to give the girl a quick hug before she exited. True to her word, she returned an hour later, clutched in her hand a letter from the Jarl herself. Constance paled as she read the letter, which stated clearly that the Guardianship of Runa Fair-shield would be passed to Rukla Dragonborn. Rukla gave a smug smiled and found Runa sitting on her bed. "Are you ready to go?"
Runa's eyes widened and she smiled. "You adopted me?"
Rukla nodded, smiling as well. "Yes. And we can leave once you're ready." It only took a moment for the child to get her few possesians together. She said goodbye to the others and they gathered around her to give her a hug and wish her luck. Even Constance said a sad goodbye to her. Runa took her saviour's hand as they left the dreaded orphanage and walked the streets of the city, finally reaching the gates. Outside, Rukla had her dappled white and black horse waiting at the stables. She lifted Runa up and set her in the saddle. "This is Braja. She's as good a horse as any and she'll help get us home." The blonde child nodded with a smile. Rukla led the horse forward, truely starting Runa's journey to her new home.
Hours into the trip, just outside of Ivarstead, Rukla laid a hand on the horse's flank and whispered "Woah."
Runa spoke, lowering her voice. "What is it?"
Quietly, Rukla replied, "There's a bear just up ahead. But I can get it from here. Just stay quiet."
Runa's heart began to pound. A bear. A creature that terrified her and took her parents away. She buried her face against Braja's mane, peeking out to watch as Rukla readied her bow. With a decent amount of skill, she let fly an arrow that had been dipped in frostbite venom. The bear made an agonized sound as the arrow stuck into the side of his neck, paralyzing him for a moment. Before he could even turn towards Rukla and her young ward, another arrow pierced his skull and he fell dead. Quickly, Rukla skinned the beast and took it's claws.
Runa was watching as her new gaurdian did this, acting it killing the bear was nothing. Which, to Rukla, it really wasn't. She had killed creatures much more dangerous. Hell, she had slain dragons before. The two travelers continued on.
They stopped at Ivarstead and went into the local inn. There, Rukla paid the Inn keeper, a friend of hers, the usual amount before leading Runa to the room. Rukla sat on the edge of the bed and took out some venison and some non-alchoholic cider. She handed both to Runa who looked surprised at recieving so much food. Rukla simply gave her a warm smile. "Tomorrow we'll be eating dinner at home." Runa smiled and ate her meal. Afterwords, she curled up in the bed and looked sleepily at Rukla.
"Night, Mama..." she whispered before finally drifting off.