The Brunstens are one of Lockenport's oldest families, and are said to have a finger in almost every pie in the city, with interests in fields as diverse as fishing, building, banking, mining and alchemy.
Legend has it that the man responsible for establishing the Brunsten fortune was a bureaucrat named Phineas the Dour. The official record in the Brunsten archive is that Phineas made a number of shrewd investments that did not generate much wealth during his lifetime, but which secured the financial fortunes of his descendants. The unofficial version of the story is that Phineas was an unscrupulous manipulator of legal ambiguities, and that he built the family fortune largely by finding creative ways to avoiding paying taxes, tithes and levies.
Eckhardt Swan was born into the Brunsten family, but ran away to join the Brotherhood of the Swan. Eckhardt tries to avoid all contact with his family, although that sometimes proves difficult given their pervasive presence in Lockenport.