The History of Drako Le’mure.
Name: Drako Le’mure
Lifespan: from 1432-1493
Nationality: Italian (Venetian)
Born in Venice, Italy in the summer (August 25th)
Known family members;
Father: Davide Le’mure 1403-1448 (sailor/tradesman) (possible pirate)
Mother: Cinzia Le’mure (the dragon) 1407-unknown (barracks cook)
No brothers or sisters (that I know of)
I was born in great city of Venice on eve of August 25th, 1432. It was a time of art, commerce and war. Many nations around Venice used the city on the water as a hub for trading. There was a fairly strong military presence in Venice at the time due to the wars in Lombardy. My father was a sailor and tradesman and was often gone on long ship voyages. He made a decent living and kept mother and I in a home and well off. My mother was not the type to sit still however and she worked for the Venetian military as a cook. The soldiers all called her “The Dragon” because of her quick temper and boisterous personality. In tribute to this, my parents named me Drako.
I grew up mostly with my mother helping her in the barracks kitchen. Sometimes the soldiers would keep me company and teach me a bit of sword play and shield bearing. When I was young I had aspirations of being a valiant soldier of Venice while training with some of the best they had to offer. When I was about 8 years old I met a boy by the name of Giovanni Bellini. His father was a famous painter. Giovanni enjoyed to do the same. Giovanni and I would spend many late nights painting along side his father Jacopo Bellini. I remember that I loved the way the paint mixed, creating color and shape. Almost as if it were some kind of magic. Young Giovanni told me once he had a dream to travel the world and paint portraits of important people. I remember thinking that would be a grand job indeed.
At the age of 16 my father’s ship was reported missing. After a few months they declared him and his small crew “dead at sea”. Rumors started spreading, saying that he had turned to piracy and was shot down by a French war ship. I know not if these rumors were true but they were enough to give my family a bad name. A French Lord by the name of Agusto Ribault claimed that my father had robbed him and that my family owed him hundreds of pounds worth of cargo. The claim was absurd but he had enough power to throw his weight around. From there on my family worked to pay this Lord what my father supposedly owed him.
At the age of 18 my mother decided I needed to leave Venice and separate myself from the family name. It was the only way she could think of for me to have my own life. I then signed on with a traveling merchant to sail the seas and help him with whatever was needed. We traveled to many places and I saw many things. Having so much free time on the ship I spent my days painting, drawing and practicing my sword play with some of the crew.
June 1452, a year or two after I left Venice, a Noble Man in England saw one of my paintings and offered to hire me for a portrait of his family. I graciously accepted his offer. I spent a couple months in his home working on this painting. Throughout this time I heard and saw many things. As it turns out, this man was fairly important or at least he thought he was. He was third cousin to England’s King Henry VI. I overheard many things I am sure he did not intend for me to hear. One in particular was a plot to steal money from a convoy headed through his area. He then planned deliver the gold to the king himself, saying he dealt with the thieves himself. All in an attempt to get on the kings good side.
When done with the painting, the Lord only paid me half of what he promised. I explained to him that this was just not enough. That I could have made more money if I had stayed with my ship. He clearly did not care about my plight as he had his few guards throw me out with him saying, “You’re lucky you were paid at all. Now be gone.” Unfortunately for him I knew quite a few secrets that the local Duke was more than pleased to hear. I made twice as much money selling those secrets than what the Lord offered me for the painting. From there on I became somewhat of a spy. Moving into homes to create art for important people, all the while retaining secrets and selling them to the highest bidder.
This “job” was not without its dangers however. I found my self in a few sword battles from those to found me out. I was forced to kill two men on two separate occasions, who called me out and drew weapons. Although the longer I did the job the better I got at it and less I got caught.
When I was 23 I took a job in Ireland. A wealthy man paid me to paint a portrait of his daughter. The daughter was beautiful and very well figured for her age and actually a joy to paint. But her attitude was appalling. I found myself leaving the manor at night to get away from the family. There was a local Pub not to far away I spent most of my time. There I met Anya. A fiery woman with bright red hair. It was clear the patrons all loved her and she was the kind of person who could talk her way in and out of any situation. I introduced myself and offered to paint her for free. She took me up on that offer and five months later we were married. Together we decided to travel the world selling our skills wherever we could.
In 1457 we settled in England claiming a small plot of land along the River Avon. About a year later I did a painting for the Duke of Warwick. He enjoyed the painting so much he invited me and my family to the castle for dinner. When they found I was also handy with a sword he offered me a permanent job defending it. It would seem my earlier aspirations of being a soldier weren’t far off. Anya and I lived the rest of our days in the area. Together we had a daughter Arianna in 1459. A year later I was called to war in the Battle of Wakefield under the command of Richard Neville (The Kingmaker). This was my first real battle. I came out with minor injuries. After that experience my paintings tended to reflect the valor of war and the sword.
After that more battles followed, many rulers came and went. In 1471 I was wounded in battle. This was a battle we did not win and only by grace of god did I survive. But my war days were over as I had gained a permanent limp. I spent the rest of my days painting, spending time with my wife and watching my daughter grow.
December 1493 my wife and I got deathly ill. My daughter came home to look after us. My wife and I died a few days later on December 12th, 1493. My only regret was never returning to my beloved city of Venice before I died.