A Mercenary Gamble
A lithe and robust elf, embodying the grace of his people, but there is something off about him, a haunted look behind his eyes.
Marlak spent most of his childhood idolising the Keepers, the guardians of the wood elf community that dwells within the Chondalwood. The keepers were holy warriors, bound to serve the seldarine and protect the elven people, and as such enjoyed great prestige.
It was this prestige that drove Marlak to become one of that elite order, but it required much effort and determination from the young elf. For although Marlak was strong and agile, even by the standards of his people, he was not quite so gifted as those who were born to this role. And so Marlak strove to master the art of the blade, not through the strength of his arm, but by the keenness of his mind. Slowly Marlak mastered the art of reading his opponent’s style to predict his moves and find the perfect opening through which to strike. Eventually, after seeing three batches of aspirants to the Keepers overtake him, Malak was deemed ready.
The final stage in his preparation was a night long vigil at the temple of the Seldarine at the heart of the forest. The temple was within the trunk of an enormous, still living oak, and was said to be a site so sacred the gods themselves had direct influence within. The vigil passed, and Marlak felt divine power imbuing him with strength. Proud that he had passed this last test, he emerged triumphant into the dawn light. However something had gone wrong, very wrong, and the elven priests recoiled from him.
Upon learning of this truth, the Keepers rejected Marlak, as none of the elves of the Chondalwood wished him to be their protector. Although he was not cast out, Marlak soon left his home to avoid the fearful gazes and cool distance that infused every aspect of interaction with his people.
For a time, Marlak wandered aimlessly, and gave himself over to the darkness within, and as he did so his power waxed strong. However, in a chance encounter with another elf, Marlak saw what it was he was becoming, and found a purpose. He would discover why the being that had corrupted him had done so, reject it’s influence, and thwart it’s aims. He has found snippets and clues that this power has some interest in the town of Eldredd, and has travelled there to investigate.