Our story begins, as many others do, with the simple and mundane. Simple folk, living out their mundane lives, perhaps as farmhands or millers, in an indifferent world. Life was hard, so people were raised hard; most finding solace in vices, tall tales, and religion. For many, that was enough; however; some dared to dream of the whimsical possibilities found in tall tales, or of the eternal glory exalted in religious testament, but few ever thought to act upon it.
In a tiny village, in an unnamed land, a small group of plucky (or, perhaps, reckless) folk heeded the words of a sagacious old man. He spoke of untold riches that lay beyond the hills outside of town, awaiting those bold enough to claim it. “Seek the portal under the stars, my friends,” crooned the old man, “Find your courage and plunge past its threshold. Gilded relics lie in the silent depths of that unearthly reliquary.” With pitchforks and torches in hand, they left to claim the treasure for themselves, unprepared for what their venture might cost them.
The price of achieving the extraordinary was paid in blood and their sanity, but the group was ultimately triumphant. They entered that heavenly vault as common stock, but left as enlightened kin, fewer in numbers yet invigorated. The treasures they found were beyond comprehension and the experience bound them together in unspoken ways, leaving them with an insatiable hunger for more. Shortly after, they left their village behind, restlessness nipping at their heels. They sought to become heroes, like the ones they had grown up hearing about. On the road, they began taking jobs where they could find them.
However, the realities of being sellswords struck the group like a bolt from the blue, and left them wandering aimlessly for a time. The world was the same everywhere they went: callous and indiscriminate. They were exposed to many horrors, both human and inhuman, and were paid to do disreputable things. Their work began taking them further away from their homelands, more so than they ever intended, but they pressed on, remaining true to their convictions. In time, what began as a band of poor, unremarkable fortune-seekers became a company of seasoned, cunning adventurers, whose search for gold and glory eventually brought them to a small fiefdom called Hirot…
Continued in ‘Doom of the Savage Kings’