Conflux and Conflagaration
Rivellan began his life over 60 years ago. Born in a small village to loving parents, he grew up knowing life as an any child should. His mother was unable to bear brothers or sisters for him after his birth. His father, a village farmer and tradesman, worked diligently to provide his wife and son food and clothing. All was well for his childhood. After the most basic education possible given the circumstances of his raising, Rivellan set off to mimic the footsteps of his father. Learning the trade of farming, he began running goods from the farm to the local village. In his journeys into town, he had dealings with the local apothecary. Intrigued as to what he could do with a fistful of beats and some wild mushrooms, Rivellan began to shadow him to learn herbalism. He quickly found he had an uncanny knack for formulating new and original recipes as well as perfecting century old traditions. Much to the pharmacists chagrin, Rivellan was quickly outdoing the old man. Furious with his natural talents, the apothecary began pushing Rivellan out of his life and sabotaging his concoctions. Feeling defeated, he returned to the family farm.
On the evening of his first night home, a commotion came from the fields behind their two-windowed shack. Peering through the windows, he saw creatures of smoke, flame and brimstone. Their very footsteps scorched the earth beneath their feet and the cacophonous noises they were making pierced his eardrums to the point of painful silence. His father ran to the fields and attempted to fight off one of the small winged creatures only to find a vicious stinger pierce his left lung. Rivellan and his mother cowered in their home hoping to be left unharmed. The demons did nothing of the sort, they tore the house apart. His mother was taken by a beautiful looking yet incredibly sinister woman and Rivellan was snatched from his resting place by a horrid, demonic vulture. Taking flight and toying with its’ new victim, Rivellan began to put up a fight. Reaching into his trousers, he found a small salve that he had made while in town at the apothecary. Without thinking of the dangers of being dropped, he hurled the cream into the eyes of the demon who let out a shrill curse and dropped Rivellan…he fell what seemed like forever until the world faded into black.
Waking to the sight of a barkskinned woman, Rivellan gasped at his new caretaker. How long had he been unconscious? Where was he? All questions quickly answered by what would later identify itself as a Dryad. The beautiful Fey took Rivellan in under its’ own tutelage and taught him the ways of the Druid. She helped to hone his herbalism skills and teach him how to survive without the trappings of man. Rivellan grew up in the shade of the Dryad for the remainder of his teenage years. He gained a great understanding on how the actions of man harm the natural balance of things and how man is the only humanoid creature capable of deprecating the natural world. The Dryad taught him proper ecology and that the old ways of farming learned from his father destroy the natural order of things. After his acceptance of the wrongdoings of man, he was accepted into The Guardians of the Green. He swore his allegiance to Obad-hai and began telling other woodland fey of his regression to the Druidic ways.
His survival and flourishing did not go unnoticed. Unfortunately for him, the Vrock who had attempted to have him as a snack was scouring the earth looking for him for years. Seeing the congregation that he had formed in a sacred grove, the Vrock ordered his demonic legion to attack. Rivellan, who had gained quite a bit of power by this time, tried to ward the grove with walls of briar and thicket. When the demonic forces tore through them, he changed his form into that of a Treant and began assaulting them. Overwhelmed, Rivellan began to retreat further into the forest. He ran past the Dryad who had helped him so many years ago only to see that she lay motionless oozing a saplike substance from her temples. She was dead. He ran on. As he turned to run, he shifted his shape back into that of an aging man only to find himself face-to-face with his original attacker. He threw a fire seed at him only to see it absorb into his leathery skin. Foolishly, he charged headlong at the creature only to find himself ensnared by a whip writhing in flame. Horrified, he turned to see the most insidious of all the Abyssal Generals. A Balor. The abomination choked the whip and the life was extinguished from Rivellan’s elderly husk… regaining consciousness, he lifted his hand to his temple to move brush his hair only to realize his body was no that of ironwood. He has been reborn. As a Warforged.
With quickly fading memories of the past, he found himself slumped in the very grove burned by the demonic legion. Confused again as to how he arrived here and how he was given a third chance at life, he arose. His powers were gone, his memories slipping through his mind like water through a sieve, he found a small note pinned to his chest. On it, a leaf very much like the one his old Dryad friend had lived upon. He knew now what his purpose in life was. Obad-hai had blessed him to protect the forests. To preserve nature. To be the warrior that he couldn’t be with skin and bones. To destroy the insidious creatures from Hell and the Abyss and restore balance to the world. He was a keeper of the forest…he was a Verdant Lord.