Brandt is a powerfully built young man. Probably in his early twenties though his scruffy beard makes estimating his age a bit difficult. His hair is black, or so dark a brown as to make no difference, and straight. Which is unusual for the Kingdom where most people tend to a light or medium brown colour and a natural curl. His face is unmarked by battle scars but his hands and forearms show the remnants of the inevitable nicks and shallow cuts one gets from training with edged blades. Many of those scars are old and almost faded, which to an attentive observer signals that he has started training at a very young age and became good enough to avoid simple training wounds a long time ago.
If not for the fact that he runs with a mercenary company, and a cheap one at that, one could easily mistake him for one of the upper nobility who share his straight black hair and patrician nose. Nobody would dream to accuse the King or one of his nobles of having a large beak of a nose of course, not even behind his back. Brandt on the other hand has been told so – often, and some of his comrades even have gone so far as to mockingly claim that if only he would armor his nose a little more he could cut his opponents in two by headbutting them. For the most part Brandt takes the teasing and mocking in stride. After showing that he could easily kick everybody’s asses if only he can be bothered to exert himself, the mocking receded from hazing to the kind of friendly ribbing that one can find between close comrades.
Of course this far out in the country few if any people have had a chance to see the King or any nobleman so mostly idle speculation as to his actual status is non-existent. Still, on occasion some peasant thinks to recognise him, a situation that Brandt obviously finds annoying rather than flattering, and that will make him leave early and keep to himself for a while. Brandt will normally keep some distance from the other mercenaries anyway, as if he feels some difference between him and them that he can not quite manage to bridge.
His armor is similarly inconclusive as to his real status. It is a cut above the typical mercenary hardware, but not so far that it raises eyebrows. Or avarice. His armor is also dinged and frequently repaired, and if it ever had a coat of paint that has long since been chipped off. It looks in fact like a second hand set of training armour and those in the know presume that Brandt is an unrecognised by-blow of one of the high nobility of the Kingdom, with a maitresse whose existence and child was politically inconvenient to acknowledge to the family.
How he ended up with the mercenary company he keeps secret, but it is clear that he is there by choice rather than by necessity. His skill alone would open positions with much higher valued companies. Should he try to he would almost certainly be accepted in the regular army as a corporal, and be trained to take over as sergeant one day. All mercenaries train daily as their lives literally depends on it, but Brandt goes a step further by approaching his exercises and sparring matches almost as a vocation. It makes him stand apart from the group some, and there is some resentment that his example makes them look lazy by comparison, but they also know that in a tight spot they can rely on him to take point and keep it.
Brandt’s weapon of choice is a big zweihander that he has to wear in a special harness on his back because it is too big to carry at his side, or in a normal sheath. For tighter quarters and ambushes he is also proficient with an ordinary bastard sword and shield. His eyes, he admits, are not good enough to ever make him anything but pathetic at using a bow and arrow or throwing weapons. And while he can use a knife, it is generally only for cutting bread and slices of meat or cheese.

 

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