Into the Breach
Koldereth Bloodtread and the Blacksmith of Agria
Alright, alright… Bloody children, but fine, I’ll tell you again.
This is one of the great tales of our land, and you’d do well to hear it, lest you have nothing to tell your young ones, when you’re an old dwarf like me.
Alright, well, I should start, I suppose, as early as I can see the hand of fate drawing our heroes together. And that would be with Koldereth the elf, the events of which would eventually lead him to his death!
Now, when Koldereth was younger, he lost his whole family and all his friends, I was too polite a dwarf to ask him the details when I met him, but as far as I know from talking to his friend Ghilrim, I can tell you that it was under the most unpleasant of circumstances. Either way, now that he was alone in the world he decided to wander. You have to understand, that when you lose that much of what makes your life, your life, it causes a man to lose his sense of purpose.
He wandered, and wandered, in fact it seems that he was wandering to be as far from the events of his past as possible, and that’s why, of all places for a winter-touched elf to be, he found himself in Agria. Now, you kids have never seen a place like Agria. Agria sits at the base of a mountain, on the edge of a desert, and is quite a grand city by any standard. Great pillars of sandstone and wonderful drinking halls too, but I don’t think that’s what drew the elf here. You see crossing the desert to Agria is no easy task, and it all but killed poor Koldereth. He’s a mighty hero as any, kids, but a small part of me thinks he may not have minded to just lay down and die in that dry place. But is was not to be!
Although the skin was peeling from his face, and there was not but a twinkle of hope in his eyes, hope found him. Now Ghilrim, was an exemplary dwarf, well thought of by his family and anyone he’d crossed the path of, and had that sort of infectious positivity you could not quell. He took pity on the alien and invited him into his home. Now, I wouldn’t say Koldereth was a stubborn man, but I hear that he was probably a little resentful of Ghilrim’s positivity, and even that he had prevented him from fleeing to the Raven Queen from the sands outside Agria. I’m told that Koldereth didn’t say a single word for the first month he stayed with the Azaraks. I think the way of life got to him eventually, they had, at least temporarily, given him a purpose, putting him to work as a smith’s aide, and treated him like family.
As happy a life as that could have been though, you can never quite be at home in somebody else’s home, and once Koldereth had found that spark of hope again, he thanked the Azaraks for how they’d treated him, and told them he was leaving to seek a life of his own.
Ghilrim wasn’t the kind of dwarf to be lazy, but his life had so far been one of a rare kind of contentment. He knew that he had to go into the world and prove himself, otherwise he might never earn the hand of the one he loved, but had not yet begun such an adventure. Well, when Koldereth said he was leaving, that was it for Ghilrim, what excuse was there now? They were practically brothers, so Ghilrim understood Koldereth’s desire to leave, and would not stop him, but this empathy planted just enough of that wanderlust in Ghilrim’s spirit, that he had to pack his things and go with him. They were both capable warriors, and although Ghilrim enjoyed his life as a smith, even his family understood that it was somewhat a waste of talent.
Although Koldereth was more than ready to drift back into isolation, it gave him great strength to have a companion like Ghilrim, now both ready to go out and forge their destiny. Apparently Koldereth had only one specific idea, about where he wanted to go, and that was North, to cooler climates. Ha, ha!
A ranger, whose entire family was killed, died once, but was resurrected by Belgerath, met at The Herald of July, the seas of Okhtosh.