Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Alaric's Backstory

Early Life
    Alaric was orphaned as a baby.  As a baby he was left on the altar of the church in Chatain.  The priest looked for many weeks for the mother and father, but neither was ever found.  Due to this the priest raised Alaric with the help of everyone in the village.  Everyone in the town treated Alaric kindly.  All during his childhood, Alaric was instilled with church doctrine.  He developed a strong moral compass at a very early age.  This caused trouble with the other children, as he was inclined to tell the truth about their "antics".  Due to this he spent much time alone in the church reading the scrolls in the church's modest library.  He also spent a lot of time in prayer because he was taught to pray when he was troubled.

The Sword
    At the age of 10, Alaric came across a sword in a forgotten room in the church.  He took it even though it was rusty, and was so dull.  He took the sword to Chatain's blacksmith who helped him remove the rust and sharpen it.  The blacksmith taught Alaric how to care for the sword, and the basics of using it.  It was not longer after this that the priest discovered the sword and confronted Alaric about it.  He made it clear to Alaric that he did not like that Alaric had a sword and pleaded with him to get rid of it.  However, Alaric was fascinated with the stories of great heroes that he had read about.  The priest relented and let him keep it.  Alaric spent many hours outside practicing with his sword, and began wearing it all the time.  At first he did not know what he was doing.  However, he found a couple of people around town that taught him what they knew of swordplay.  He soaked this up and practiced whenever he had the chance.  Occasionally, visitors came to the town, and Alaric was able to convince them to help him with his swordplay.  After six years of this, he was quite proficient with the long sword.

The Incident
    When Alaric was 15 something starting harassing Chatain's outer farms.  At first it was just a sheep here and a cow there, but the attacks became more frequent.  It was discovered that this was the work of a band of brigands living in the woods outside Chatain.  Alaric took it upon himself to end the raids.  One day, Alaric strode out in the direction that the brigand camp was located.  He confronted the brigands and commanded them to leave.  The brigands' answered him by drawing their swords and coming at Alaric.  Alaric was able to hold off all three for awhile.  During this dual Alaric continued to demand that the brigands throw down their swords and turn themselves in.  The brigands never complied with this.  During the fight, Alaric was getting tired and had been cut a few times.  During all of this, Alaric was fighting very defensively, and had yet to bloody any of the brigands.  Alaric soon realized that he was going to have to kill the brigands or be killed by them.  Alaric then caught the brigands off guard by going into an all out offensive.  After the many years of practice with the sword, Alaric was able to dispatch the brigands, but not without taking wounds himself.  He then gathered up everything of value in the camp along with the bodies and made his way back to Chatain.  He went first to the church where he implored to priest to give the brigands burial rites, and to help bury them.  The priest agreed, but said this had to wait for the next day.  When asked about what Alaric planned to due with the camp findings, Alaric replied that he would split it amongst the affected citizens.  After distributing the findings and returning to the church, the full weight of what Alaric had done hit him.  He stayed awake all night playing for forgiveness for killing three men.  For many weeks Alaric was distraught by the events, and refused to touch his sword.  He spent many hours discussing what happened with the priest, and the priest was able to convince Alaric, that there was no other solution.  He explained that by Alaric confronting the brigand, he set in motion events that would end up with one of them dead.  Alaric was slowly convinced that it was better for him a devout, and good man, to have survived than the lawless brigand.  Once he had come to terms with that, he reread the stories of great heroes, and only now realized that they had killed men as well.  They did not seem to have problems with doing this, but only ever killed when it was necessary.  Alaric realized that he had done the same thing and began to think of himself as a Servant of the Light.  When he mentioned this to the priest, the priest smiled, and agreed.  He said that Alaric was right, but to be careful of who he mentioned that to.  Alaric began to feel much better.  However, he vowed to never kill a man again unless there was no other option available.