Count Aleric Lukas von Traugott

       Owner of Traugott's Clock Shop, located in the commons of Heathfield. Run by William (grandfather) and Patrick (grandson) McMannon, whom he hired. King's Man under the Black Griffon. Dedicated to him and his Queen. Mother Maria, brother Niklas and sister Julia, all reunited after the daring rescue of mother and sister from the dungeons of Luneberg.

      Baron Lukas von Traugott was a wealthy merchant of Luneberg. His craftsmanship in clocks had become renowned. Each piece was hand carved and balanced to perfection. This was the Traugott family's main claim to fame for decades. Traugott Clocks hung in the elite of the elite family homes.

      Being the kind of person Lukas was, he had two price sheets, one for the elite who bragged what they paid more than an appreciation of the clock itself and one that fit the not so elite of the elite that they may enjoy such a clock in the appreciation they were crafted for. 

-- The Luneberg Hawk --

      The Clock Shop was in the von Traugott Mansion itself, the building too had become renowned for the various chimes all in unison on the hour and even the few notes on the half hour. Those of Luneberg were always well abreast of the time. It was not an uncommon sight to see everyone stop to listen, taking that pause from whatever they had been doing to hear the chimes of the Traugott clocks.

      The Traugott family was loyal to Baron von Feldberg and Luneberg, Count Rouget de Lisle, Karl von Rundstedt. Most believed a decade ago the man had been murdered even if his body had never been found. Many rumors had surrounded this tragic event but very few would question or even consider it was the man's own brother or his mourning fiancee. Lukas von Traugott was one of those few to question such shaky evidence. He knew Garath Lyons, he knew Vincent de Beauvais, Jean Danatien de Vimeure, Trevor Cairns and Lazre Carno, whom had all disappeared along with their lord, placing them under suspicion that they had turned upon their reign in murder. Lukas knew them too well to even suspect such would ever be the case. 


      He had gathered evidence to speak out against those that would ruin these men and their family names. Lukas' evidence managed to falter as documents disappeared along with a few creditable witnesses.

      Instead, Lukas von Traugott was charged with treason and executed by the guillotine the next day. His wife and daughter made to watch before they were thrown into prison. A prison under the belly of the keep where most were forgotten over time. Miraculous the youngest son, Niklas, around fourteen years of age at that time, had disappeared. Claude had every intention of wiping out the males of the family as their wealth was confiscated as his own. The wife Maria and daughter, Julia of about twelve, were imprisoned so Claude could show mercy. Such would appease the many whom cared for the family and the knowledge Claude held the key that their lives could end if anyone tried to interfere. The eldest son, Aleric, was sent for immediately but Claude's men came back empty handed, it was discovered the eldest son had been killed in a hunting accident in the lands of Spain a few weeks prior at the age of seventeen.

Aleric von Traugott at the age of fifteen had been sent off to important noble families of foreign countries that his father had maintained a friendship with. 

      Attendant to knights as their squire, learning how to fight well under their training, to diplomats' apprentice that brought him along as they met with those in political matters of state. Lukas had hoped by sacrificing Aleric being away to stay with them, that he would become a diplomat when he was of age, becoming a well trained aid for Karl von Rundstedt. 

      These plans fell to ruin with the death of Karl and the takeover of his brother Claude. Lukas had taken the precaution to send word to Prince Pedro Rodgeraz to protect his son, now at the age of twenty-two, in case something happened unforeseen in his crusade against Claude. Pedro kept his word to his friend when he got word of his execution. A documented falsified death of Aleric was decreed, staging a hunting accident that produced even a dead body that would pass for his likeness. Aleric went into immediate hiding, becoming known only as The Hawk, a name Pedro had given him for his keen sight and natural abilities. 

      The Hawk had learned well in those years of training as an apprentice working his way up. He learned not to react hastily without thinking things through first. To do otherwise would only have another Traugott dead and the fate of Maria and Julia sealed.

       It took a lot of discipline on Hawk's part. He went home to Luneberg as The Hawk, stripped of family, title, and most of their wealth. Lukas had managed to get a bulk of it out and in a place where Aleric could get hold of it. It was used frugally while he found means to make more. It took Aleric two years to track down Garath Lyons, a man skilled in the art of keeping just one step ahead.

       It was the very fact that Hawk persisted that initially kept him alive, coupled with his own growing reputation. Garath didn't know whom this younger man was but this unspoken respect for such a talent had him holding off from just killing the man when he managed to turn the tables in an ambush. There stood Garath Lyons, the Black Griffon's right hand, and the notorious Four Horsemen around the one known as The Luneberg Hawk. Friend or foe would be determined that faithful night.



      Lukas had given Aleric enough information in the extra missive sent to Prince Rodgeraz to deliver into his son's hands, to save his son's hide that night. The grilling, at the end of a blade's point, lasted a good six hours before they believed him. It was through certain knowledge Aleric had, Garath embraced the son of Baron Lukas von Traugott instead of seeing his death. On this memorable night The Hawk teamed up with Garath and the Four Horsemen, to serve the very much alive Count Karl von Rundstedt. Eight more years would pass in the gathering of information and keeping track of Claude's reign before the wait would pay off. Of all the men the Hawk had served, Garath Lyons eventually taught him the most, not just to hone Aleric's skill in battle, but discipline of mind in the ability to think things through even clearer. Eventually Hawk got to meet the Black Griffon and his Queen wife personally, as important information was gathered to make plans in a retribution long overdue. 

      There was one man that was as loyal to The Hawk as he was to Garath and the Black Griffon. A name given by Hawk himself for his skills in fitting appropriately, he became known as the Mole....


The Luneberg Mole

      No one knew exactly where Jacque Soufle came from. A lad claiming the country of France as birthplace and making his way through the various lands. There was that edge to his accent that would have one questioning it, still, if he had spent a lot of time in other countries it would account for the mixture. He was hired as a kitchen boy at the age of fourteen in the Keep of Baron von Feldberg and Luneberg, Count Rouget de Lisle, Claude Louis Hector von Rundstedt. Perhaps it was pity for the half mask he wore over the upper portion of his face with the hint it covered a hideous burn. Blue eyes were lively, friendly, as was the high level of energy the lad seemed to have in spite of his disfigurement. The boy was very likable, one that did many a favor willingly. Jovial, talkative while he teased the kitchen maids chasing them about when he got older in a childish, playful way. Jac wasn't too bright, slow in the head some would say, he became more like a piece of furniture when around if he wasn't talking incessantly. 

      This was part of his ruse so that Jac could gain information while certain ones were around that wouldn't say anything otherwise. They didn't have to worry about a lad whom couldn't even seem to add, read or write. They had attributed much to his accident as being the cause. Jac was one of those right out there in the forefront of things in being around but also went unnoticed too. He was just Jac who did everything asked of him, harmless and not too bright. . 

      The lad worked hard, got his work done and no one noticed when he was not around. Bits and pieces all added up to a wealth of information over the years as Jac grew into a man. He found his way to the dungeons and brought food to the ones he found there. He was very good in his comings and goings to go unnoticed. If he was found in a place he shouldn't be, and that happened once or twice, he was just lost and directed to where he should be. Little did any of those loyal to Claude suspect the 'slow kid' that grew into the 'slow young man'

      Jac found the secret passageways that Claude built to hide his treasures in, places to escape to, places where he held secret meetings. He also found ways to go unnoticed, hidden, when meetings took place. It was during one of these that he heard about the legend of the Hawk. Seemed Claude was concerned over this one and was doing his best to find the man.

      Still, the Hawk always managed to elude Claude and his men, winning the respect of Jac. He decided he would find this Hawk himself in a personal challenge set. It was actually Hawk that found Jac when he made his own attempts to infiltrate the Keep. He posed as a merchant selling woolen goods and there to see the Castellan. He was ushered into the kitchen to wait and offered a respite of food. It was here the bumbling Jac came under his scrutiny. Outgoing as the young man was, somewhere around eighteen Hawk figured, he tried striking up a conversation with Aleric. The others had warned him about not minding the lad named Jac, that he wasn't all there in the head.

      Hawk played along, being adept at making up things that would lend more credence to his role as a merchant. He knew the others would be listening. He own assessment of Jac begged to differ after that prussian blue gaze locked onto those lively blue eyes like a hawk's. The hair on the back of his neck prickled instantly, instinctively, that this lad was not what he would portray himself to be. Of course he said nothing, hiding himself, but it perked his own curiosity to find out. An hour later the word came back that their Castellan refused to see him, he was assured it was the one's way and that he should keep coming back until the one gave him an audience.

     The old adage that the squeaky wheel got the oil. What Hawk didn't expect was the ability of this Jac to follow him to one of his hiding places after he left the Keep. What Jac didn't expect was to find the room empty he saw the merchant go into and followed, only to find him entering behind him, sword drawn with the locking click of the door. "Now for the truth..." Aleric said to start them off, there would be no ruse in the conversation that commenced. Each wary of the other as information was given but not completely, just enough to ring true without too much detail.


       Neither gave their real names, neither admitted to the real connection to the two females in the dungeon, only that Jac had been a friend of Niklas and had come to find him. Only name Aleric gave Jac was he was the one known as The Hawk and he too was doing a favor for another. Jac's story unfolded as finding the mother and daughter of his friend had been imprisoned. He stayed to help as best he could while he waited for Niklas to show up, figuring eventually his friend would. Aleric had hope he would too. He gave Jac the nickname of The Mole to be referred to as outside the Keep, given for his ability to get into places none others could. Their friendship grew based on a common cause and growing mutual respect. The Mole in turn gave allegiance to the Hawk and kept him informed. Aleric would direct him in what information was needed. Together they became a team.

      Jac said little about the mask he wore but enough to sustain the rumor he had been a victim of a fire but escaped alive, left with a disfiguring burn over the top portion of his face. The ruse he wore the mask so as not have others turn from him in disgust and pity. 


      There would still be pity but not of the kind seeing the actual disfigurement would have. As the years passed both became adjusted to the fact it seemed Niklas was not coming back. This fact hinted that Aleric's brother had to be dead or he would have by now. 

      He could believe Jac knew his brother for the information he had on the family, right down to knowing about Aleric's death and the execution of their father. Information more than would be obtained while working in the Keep. Both focused on keeping Maria and Julia alive with the hope they could get them out of there legally. Aleric knew if such didn't present itself he would get them out in a daring rescue if need be. Hope, in finding the Black Griffon alive, stayed his hand from attempting such for it was a risk not in favor of being successful for where they were located, for any of them. He would not put his mother and sister's lives at stake unnecessarily. Aleric's whole connection where they were concern, was solely through the Mole, whom could get in to see them on the sly, bringing them descent food and uncontaminated water. He had assured Hawk, that in spite of all the years they had been down there, they hadn't given up hope and were in fair health. The latter, Hawk could be thankful to the Mole for. Together they drew up a map of the whole Keep including all the renovations Claude made, all the secret passageways, rooms and escapes. This was the map he eventually gave to the Black Griffon.



No claims are made to any of the pictures shown. The actor is Vincent Perez, only used to give an idea of how this fictional character would look.