“Saint Garrick, grant me the strength to bring the light of civilization to my people, that they may walk in darkness no more. Amen.” -Tess Greenskin
It is a rare thing for a full-blooded orc to be raised in human civilization. Half-orcs are feared and mistrusted; full orcs are hated, considered monsters doomed to violence and savagery. When an orcish babe was discovered amongst the smoldering ruins of an orcish warcamp that had been put to the torch by Garrick scouts, the soldiers wanted nothing more than to dash its brains out against the rocks. But the chaplain who had accompanied them took pity on the creature, and took it under his protection, determined to raise it in the light of the church.
While the orc child showed signs of her bloodthirsty nature early on, the chaplain was patient with her and soon she learned to control her urges. He kept her locked away in the church, for fear of what others might do to her were she ever exposed to the public, but he taught her to read and write and raised her as a devout priestess. She took the name Tess, after the old hero Tess the Exile, and from her adoptive father she learned the gift of healing magic.
When the old chaplain passed, Tess was left alone in a hostile land without a friend in the world. She was met with hostility and scorn wherever she went, and sometimes outright violence. Fleeing an angry mob, she was saved by Rhialla, who was in town opening a chapter-house of the newly formed Inquisition. Rhialla recognized in Tess a fellow devout, and took the orc maiden on as her personal standard-bearer, shaming all those who had mocked and feared her. Tess accompanied Rhialla when she went forth to treat with the orcish Khan, and was struck down defending her lady with her last breath.
Tess Greenskin was the fourth incarnation of Feng Vola.