Constantine van Rijn, The Younger Brother
"I've always lived in your shadow brother, and that is where I will stay." Constantine is the smooth talking younger brother with more than a little more finesse than Torix. Nonetheless, he is content to live in his brother's shadow in and out of combat, and follows wherever their misadventures take them. As a child Constantine was held to every precedent his brother Torix had set. He wasn't physically fit, had a pale complexion, and had no sense of duty to society, the kaiser or anyone. That is, except his parents Prospero and Miranda. As a prominent merchant Prospero van Rijn had many competitors within Eisenreich. He would come home every day and complain about how they could drive him out of business. With Torix away at the military academy Prospero took out his frustration on Constantine. And so Constantine learned to hide from his father whenever he was home. Occasionally he would sneak to the pantry to eat, tip-toeing so as not to attract the attention of Prospero. The learning curve for such a skill was steep and Constantine considered it a necessity. After a long time Constantine figured out a way he could end his fathers frustration. Constantine would wander into the market over to Prospero's competitors and when they weren't looking would shoplift from them. "They'll love me more than Torix for this." he thought. This became a daily ritual for Constantine, he never could work up the courage to tell his father but the results came on very fast and there was peace in the van Rijn house. He was calculated and careful. Whenever he got caught he would come up with a clever lie to disguise his intentions. He had no idea his actions would have dire consequences. Eventually Constantine was discovered, along with his ties to Prospero. All the blame went to Prospero. Prospero was the most hated man in the market district. "Do you have any idea what you have done to my reputation, boy!" Prospero roared as he assaulted Constantine with a flurry of forehand and backhand slaps. Prospero moved his business to the shadier parts of Eisenreich out of necessity. From then on Constantine was not allowed to go out during the day without supervision, and was never allowed out at night. A year passed, but the shadow of Constantine's actions on Prospero's business never left. Torix came back, but Prospero and Miranda never spoke of the shame that Constantine had brought upon the van Rijn name. One morning an Eisenreich city guard arrived at the van Rijn home to deliver news: the death of Prospero. He had gone out the following night to do business in the outer circle and never came back. The guards theorized that a deal had gone sour with some questionable characters. Constantine grew pale. "Not only is father dead but it is my fault." he thought. Both brothers took the news hard."Why would he do that! Why would he trade in the outer circle!? It doesn't make sense." Torix yelled at The top of his lungs. Constantine kept his feelings hidden from Torix so as not to arouse suspicion. Late one night Constantine awoke with Torix in full gear hovering above him. "The city guard will not bring us justice, if we want it we must go out and take it!". Constantine retrieved a rapier he had stolen from The Steinfaust Smithy during his shoplifting days. The brothers grilled Eisenreich's petty criminals until they found the location of those who had slain Prospero, an abandoned warehouse. Constantine kept in the shadows as Torix burst open the heavy oaken double-doors of the edifice and proceeded to carve up multitudes of thugs with his full-blade as if they were wet paper. He eventually was surrounded by two on opposite sides. "Brother, some assistance please!" Constantine thrust his rapier into the thug at his brother's back. With the two of them working as one the thugs were all dead quickly and Torix's thirst for vengeance was quenched. Constantine noticed much had changed in his brother. "Those military dogs trained you well brother." Torix, panting and covered in blood, nodded. In Constantine's mind guilt raged "If you only knew brother, then my corpse would be among those brutes.". The two brothers returned home and never spoke of that night. Their mother Miranda soon was struck with disease. Prospero's savings were spent towards treatment but eventually she succumbed. Then the brother's were out on The street. They were now orphans, neither brother with enough wealth to afford or maintain property. They journeyed around Eisenreich performing odd-jobs. But never could Constantine bear to look at his brother for more than minutes at a time, with the weight of his misdeeds steering his gaze. Because of his betrayal, Constantine holds nothing but animosity towards Vincent Violet and will continue to feel frustration and indignation until his reign as Kaiser is brought to an end permanently.