Rufus Auberc b. 4564 d. 4668
Lordis Auberc b. 4602 d. 4694
Istani Auberc b. 4630 d. 4720
Vand Auberc b. 4663 d. ????
Count Vand Auberc, was the fourth of his family name to hold title. His great-grandfather, Rufus Auberc, proud owning of a fine fleet of fishing vessels, purchased his title (Baron, not Count) not long after making a huge donation to the Coliseum, which had just begun construction. Not content with a fortune made from carp and tuna, Rufus was hot to expand his business and improve his house’s standing in Tintammil, but he lacked the necessary funds for expansion. Frustrated, he resorted to the most expedient method at hand – robbery – and paid the Fins to steal Hawkpeak silver earmarked for Lord Barginali, the Marquis of Lorvale, a powerful noble whose family had fornicated on the floors of Tintammil for generations. The heist was successful, beginning House Auberc’s journey on the path of good fortune.
With the silver procured from Barginali’s chests, Rufus led House Auberc to great prosperity. Just before his death in 4668, Torval proclaimed Auberc a Count, making him the highest ranked landless noble next to the obscenely wealthy Videssyns. The title upgrade was granted in acknowledgement of the beautiful statue of the God-Emperor Rufus commissioned to mark the entrance of the recently completed Coliseum.
Vand Auberc, Rufus’s great-grandson, was the younger of Istani Auberc’s two sons. His older brother, Intari, died in 4681 when accidentally shot while out on a hunting expedition. Vand wasn’t a member of the hunting company, but there were whispers that he might have purposefully missed the hunt to avoid suspicion in the matter of his brother’s death.
After Istani died, Vand became close with Lord Raynard Barginali, the Marquis of Lorvale. Luckily for Vand, the Barginalis had never discovered the theft perpetrated by his great-grandfather Rufus. The very well-connected Raynard did have evidence implicating Vand in his brother Intari’s death, but instead of turning the young Auberc over to the authorities, Barginali saw a kindred spirit and approached him about pursuing a mutually beneficial relationship.
Eager to improve his position, Vand listened. The young Auberc exuded natural leadership and oodles of charisma, to the point where his confidence bordered on arrogance. The two approached Vand’s father about forming a partnership, thinking that the Auberc fleet could be used to expand Barginali’s trade. Also, Vand wanted to move into the very profitable slave trade, but Istani Auberc flatly refused and told his son not to trust the overly ambitious Barginali.
Father and son argued for several years and all the while Barginali was whispering in Vand’s ear and telling him how much he could accomplish if his father wasn’t holding him back. At the same time, Vand was growing quite popular in the court and had a cadre of young, disaffected nobles hanging on his every word. But, no matter how hard he tried, nothing Vand said could convince his father. Istari kept tight reins on the business and muttered for Vand to be patient.
Well, patience was not one of Vand’s virtues and in 4720, his impatience won out when he killed his father to gain control of the family business. Vand was smart and made it look like an accident. Supposedly, Istari slipped on the stairs in the Auberc villa and broke his neck, but Vand’s mother, Aescalia, was skeptical from the get go. She’d seen how young Vand eyed his father and the influence Barginali had over her son, but she had no proof or evidence of his guilt, and so she kept her suspicions to herself.
After Vand took over the business, it began to expand rapidly, just as he and Barginali had planned and within a few short years, slaving replaced fishing as the Auberc’s primary source of revenue.