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Harbin of Terisiare
Throughout the multiverse, all children strive for independence from their parents. As children grow into adulthood, “growing pains” are quite common. The separation between child and parent can be a very difficult ordeal, but for the child to survive on its own it is a necessary trial. No child desires to live under its parents’ wing forever. But one child in particular, Harbin of Argive, was not given the chance. For he was born the son of Urza.
Harbin’s life was filled with many uncertainties, the chief of which concerned his birth. Harbin was born the son of Kayla bin-Kroog, exiled princess of the kingdom of Yotia. However, Harbin’s father is another matter altogether. While Urza, Lord Protector and Chief Artificer of all of Argive, raised Harbin, the truth of this fatherhood remains ever in question. Nine months before Harbin’s birth, Kayla had an affair with Urza’s brother and chief rival Mishra, Qadir of the Suwwardi and lord over all the Fallaji lands. While Harbin’s true father may never be revealed, the lad’s importance in the Brothers’ War is certainly undiminished.
After the fall of Yotia, Harbin was raised by his mother and Urza’s former apprentice, the artificer Tawnos. During a very early age, Tawnos and Kayla brought Harbin before Urza, astounded that the artificer had made no effort in trying to find his wife and only son. Urza, always chiefly concerned with attempting to outthink and outmaneuver his brother, was dreadfully afraid of attempting to reunite with his wife and son. At Tawnos’s request, Urza reluctantly took Kayla and Harbin into his home.
Although the shadow of the Brothers’ War dominated all of Terisiare, Harbin enjoyed a relatively peaceful life. Although the lad showed none of Urza’s genius, he did eventually come to believe artifacts were useful tools in accomplishing a better way of life.
As Harbin matured, he became increasingly more willing to please his father. Harbin longed for the life of a ornithoper pilot, flying the machines in service of the Argivian military. Harbin was astounded when Urza and Kayla granted the youth’s lifelong request, enlisting him as a pilot for various scouting missions. Harbin eventually began to feel betrayed. His father was deliberately placing him out of harm’s way. Harbin detested the idea that because he was the son of the Lord Protector of Argive he was somehow exempt from the many uses of ornithopters on the battlefield. However, Urza offered no condolences, and insisted Harbin was better suited for scouting missions. It was upon one of these missions that Harbin would forever change the face of the Brothers’ War and all of Dominia.
On one such mission, Harbin unwittingly discovered an entire continent. This forested land was rich in lumber and mineral deposits, scarce supplies in great need in the service of Argive. After repairing his broken ornithoper, Harbin returned to tell his father of the great news. Harbin was rather disappointed with Urza’s response. Urza felt that to invade another continent and continue the escalating war upon new shores would only lead to a greater destruction of nature. Already all of Terisiare was a barren and gutted wasteland, and this new continent should not suffer the same fate. Harbin was quick to remind his father that if he did not use the resources of the new continent, Mishra would definitely do so. With a heavy heart, Urza agreed.
Harbin was placed in command of negotiations between the Argivians and the masters of the new continent of Argoth. However, these negotiations were quick, to the point, and an ultimate failure. Harbin met with the ruler of Argoth, the forest spirit (perhaps even planeswalker) known as Titania. Harbin pleaded with Titania to allow Urza to use a fraction of Argoth’s resources to win the war, else Mishra would conquer the land and use it as he saw fit. Titania would not listen. She vowed no allegiance with either brother, stating clearly that any man, woman, or child of Terisiare would be slaughtered once setting foot on her shores. Harbin could press Titania no further and began bolstering Argive’s defenses against not one, but two enemies. Mishra had also taken notice of the island.
“Titania should know that my people need the lumber on your shores and the minerals beneath your hills. We are at war against a greater, darker power and need every resource we can muster.”
As both brothers arrived on Argoth, Harbin was eager and prepared for the action he had sought for his entire life. However, Urza had other plans. Harbin was to be sent home at once, away from the coming conflict. Harbin was furious, but knew he could do nothing against his father’s wishes. Harbin departed Argoth for his homeland. He would never arrive.
In the aftermath of the Brothers’ War, Urza unleashed a powerful blast of an origin unknown to Harbin. Ironically, Urza had doomed his son by attempting to keep him safe. Harbin’s ship was destroyed, along with all of Argoth, during the climax of the long war. Harbin was survived by his only son, the mage Jarsyl.