Edwin Gardner has the typical features of Gardnerians, with black hair, deep green eyes, and pale skin with an emerald shimmer. He is short. He has a scraggly bears and a shy, friendly smile. He wears a pair of thick spectacles. Edwin is getting older and it shows in his stiff joints and he has developed a lingering illness that makes him weak. As a young man, Edwin is disheveled and stocky. He has none of Vale and Vyvian's natural grace and aloof severity.
After his illness, he leans heavily on a cane and struggles to walk. His beard has grown thicker. Half his face appears to have gone permanently slack. He is noticeably thinner and older looking. His speech is now slightly muffled.
Edwin raised Elloren and her brothers with love and affection. He is patient, kind, and good with children. Edwin is mild-mannered. He is incredibly protective of Elloren and kept her sheltered from the larger world. He was always reluctant to let her venture far from Halfix. One of his most unique traits is that he believes the Gardnerian power structure to be unfair towards women. Even though women are not allowed in the music crafter's Guilds, Edwin taught Elloren how to craft violins after her natural talent was undeniable. He also wants her to wait to become wandfasted until she is older, and wants her to make the choice based on love. Edwin disapproves of religion of any kind. He brought up Elloren and her brothers simply and humbly. Edwin is not one to make judgements about others based on their race.
Uncle Edwin's quiet, bookish nature may be a bit of a ruse. Cael Eirllyn points out to Elloren, Rafe, and Trystan that they are as close to Gardnerian royalty as one can get. Thus, Uncle Edwin's decision to raise them to be so subversively was actually very brave. Cael believes it will get Edwin killed and thinks he must be very clever to still be alive. When Tessla meets him, she notices that he is shy and unsure in his manner, but there is a quick intelligence that mirrors Vale's.
Edwin is the son of Carnissa Gardner, the powerful Mage known as the Black Witch. His siblings are Vyvian and Vale. As a child, their mother was usually off conquering lands for Gardneria, so Edwin and Vale were raised by an Urisk nursemaid named Annel'lin who was a refugee fleeing north. The brothers consider her to be their true mother as their real mother was consumed by her power and had no natural mothering instincts.
Edwin never wandfasted and had no children of his own. When Vale and his fastmate Tessla died during the Realm War, Edwin took in their three children and raised them as his own. Originally they lived in Valgard where Edwin owned and ran a violin shop. After Vyvian inquired about the results of the children's wandtesting, he moved the family to Halfix.
Tessla Harrow meets Edwin at her birthday dinner. She immediately likes him.
When Vyvian wrote him a letter telling him that she would be visiting to discuss Elloren's future, Edwin began making arrangements for Elloren to attend Verpax University. He tells Elloren he did this because he believed her aunt did not want what was best for her and that he was trying to protect her. Knowing Vyvian would not be willing pay Elloren's university fees, he arranged for Elloren to pay her tithe through kitchen labor.
Edwin falls ill soon after Elloren arrives at Verpax. His heart has become weak, and he has lost the use of the left side of his body. He has been placed under Vyvian's physician's care.
Edwin is able to visit his niece and nephews at Verpax University for Founder's Day. He is introduced to the Lupines by Rafe. He attentively listens to Kendra share all the different teeth on her necklace and the various watercolor drawings she has made.
In a flashback to the days after Vale, Tessla, and Carnissa's deaths, Edwin is grieving the loss of his brother and Tessla, and to a lesser extent the loss of his mother. He had just tried to warn Tessla not to continue helping the Resistance, but Tessla and Vale had refused to stop. Edwin makes the decision to raise Rafe, Elloren, and Trystan himself. He also decides that he will raise them in such a way that neither Gardneria nor the Resistance can have them. He doesn't want any of the evils that come with power, magic, or their family's legacy to touch his nephews and niece.
Later in the flashback, Edwin wandtests Elloren. He has already wandtested Rafe and Trystan and is relieved they don't have the Black Witch's powers. He's devestated when it's revealed Elloren does. In an attempt to keep her safe and away from danger, Edwin convinces Elloren that her memories of the fire she started during her wandtesting was just from a lightning storm and that she has no magic.
Powers & Abilities
Edwin has little magic in him, just the faintest tremor of earth. He's a Level One Mage. However, he is an incredibly talented violin player and craftsman.
Edwin does not have a good relationship with his sister. While Edwin might have the legal control of the family, Vyvian truly has the power. Edwin is visibly afraid and nervous around his sister, even as an adult. He does his best to avoid her.
Edwin is the only parent the siblings know. He raised them with love and affection. Edwin clearly wants them to make their own choices in life, and he is incredibly protective of them.
- Edwin has never allowed wands or grimoires in the house.
- Based on the description of his illness, it is most likely that Edwin suffered from a stroke.