Last Updated: April 4, 2008
Character stats are located below.
It was mid-autumn when a small adventuring party of seven, leading a mule drawn wagon, came wandering down the path to the small farm of Stedd and Shandrill Lythwood. They introduced themselves as the Ironguard Company. Their leader's name was Horstag, a human paladin. Others included Jarinda (a moon elf mage), Nym (a moon elf ranger), Dorn and Morn (two human brothers and paladins of Torm), Corkaury (a halfling rogue) and Thorin (a dwarven warrior). They asked the couple if they had extra supplies they would be willing to sell, as they still had a long perilous journey ahead of them.
As Stedd was bringing the provisions to the back of the wagon, a sudden burst of wind tore the tarp off of the back, exposing what appeared to be five golden leathery eggs, each appeared to be about two feet long. Jarinda quickly covered the precious cargo and told them to forget what they had seen. The company soon left, and Stedd and Shandrill returned to their daily chores.
Two nights later, the Lythwood's were awakened when a bloody and bruised Horstag came crashing through their door. Clutching one of the golden eggs, Horstag whispered, his voice hoarse, "By Torm, you must protect them now...". The giant of a man fell silent and still. The Lythwood's hid the golden egg under their bed, and cleaned the wounds and body of the fallen warrior, so that he could be brought to the village priest for a proper burial. Exhausted and badly shaken by the night's events, Stedd and Shandrill fell asleep.
The next morning, Stedd and Shandrill awoke to a loud scratching noise only to find that the golden egg was hatching. To their surprise, they soon found themselves to be holding what appeared to be an ordinary human baby boy. Fearing that the other golden eggs, may soon be hatching as well, Shandrill urged her husband to follow the path that Horstag must have taken and discover what had happened.
The next day, Stedd arrived at a valley. Over three-dozen bodies littered the ground. Some wore the uniforms of Zhentarim Soldiers, others bore a heraldic symbol he did not recognize (but later learned from a friendly Harper Scout to be that of the evil Cult of the Dragon). Stedd was quickly able to find five of Horstag's companions. All were dead. He continued to search the battle site, but found no sign of the other four golden eggs, or the body of the moon elf mage, Jarinda. Fearing that the stench of death would soon attract others, Stedd left for home, vowing never to return to this cursed place.
Not being blessed with kids of their own, Stedd and Shandrill decided to adopt the child and name him Horstag, in honor of the man who brought him to them. Young Horstag grew up a simple life as a farmer, and soon discovered his innate talents. His parents, fearful of what others might say, and a little fearful themselves, warned Horstag to keep his abilities secret. For many years, he practiced what he could do and learned his limits. The only people, other then his parents, who knew of his gifts were his friends Merri, a girl his age from a nearby farm, and her younger brother, Mark. When he came of age, Stedd and Shandrill told Horstag the truth of his heritage. This, along with his numerous trips with Stedd to the village markets, only fuelled his curiosity to see the rest of the world and find not only his place in it, but the possible fate of his four siblings.
Saying goodbye to his parents and childhood companions, Horstag's father took him aside before he left home and told him that the the best place for him to start down the road to find what he was lookign for was at the big Shieldmeet festival. Midsummer was almost upon him so he hurried to Blackfeather Bridge. It was traditional for the Featherdale Scouts -- an informal group of young adventurous kids who tracked, scouted and delivered post in and around Featherdale -- to escort the Featherdarrans to the Shieldmeet. As he hurried to meet the last of the young scouts eagerly, Horstag could almost taste adventure in the air...