The Ties That Bind
Kiladius The Bringer Of Judgement
Tiefling Paladin (Lawful Neutral)
As a child, Kiladius had good reason to be optimistic. He was born in the poor district of Lightfall, Mudwall. He was the only child of two hard working Tieflings, Thexius & Yameia. They were by no means wealthy, but they made enough to survive by catching fish and selling them in a small stand they bulit down on the wharf. This was enough to provide at least a spartan lifestyle for their small family. As Tieflings they were often looked down upon as shady, untrustworthy and of sinister intent so in order to defeat this stereotype, Kiladius’ parents made every effort to separate themselves from their demonic heritage. They were industrious, thankful for what they had and would go out of their way to help others who had nothing.
Kiladius’ revelation to the the unjust reality of life came early when he was only 6 years old. One night, as his parents were closing their fish stand, a group of obviously inebriated men came stumbling loudly towards them. They were dressed in fine clothing, certainly nicer than anything inhabitants of Mudwall could afford, and had the air of wealth surrounding them. As they walked by, one of the larger men kicked their fish stand and muttered “demon’s whores” under his breath. Thexius, outraged by the disgusting insult and disrespect, confronted him and asked him to repair the damage and apologize for the insult. “Neverr…”, slurred the rich oaf as he reached for a dagger and stabbed Thexius in the chest. Yameia shrieked in horror and Kiladius ran to his father’s lifeless body on the dock. “Father!”, he cried out. “Get back you worthless little hell spawn,” muttered the attacker to Kiladius, “or I’ll do the same to you!” Yameia screamed as she charged at the man at full speed, yelling “Run Kiladius!” Her athletic frame crashed into the portly man and sent them both of the dock and into the water.
Through his tear soaked eyes, the boy ran home as fast as he could. He spent the rest of the night hiding in his bed sobbing fearfully to himself. It was not until the warm sunlight of morning crept through his window did Kiladius dare venture back. Fearing what he may find, he ran towards the wharf seeing a crowd in the distance. As he pushed through the group of horrified bystanders, what he saw shook him to his core. His gaze fell upon his parents cold and lifeless bodies in a pile on the wharf with a crude sign near them reading “Demon Whores”.
It was then that his idealism left him. He spent the next decade learning the ways of survival. He learned the alleyways, to take what he needed, and most important, he learned how to fight. He would never again feel weak and helpless as he did that horrible night. Kiladius grew strong and resilient as stone. This combined with his imposing demonic build, easily struck fear into the most hardened of men. He was feared throughout the alleys of Lightfall.
For years Kiladius lived this way, surviving with the ruthlessness of life pushing him onward aimlessly. On a night as fateful as the night of his parents cold blooded murder, Kiladius found himself in a tavern in Lightfall arm wrestling soldiers to earn his next pint, when an older man walked in the room. He was well into his 60’s but was still incredibly muscular and agile. Kiladius eyed him with curiosity as he made his way to the bar. He had well weathered bronze skin showcasing years of battle scars and and enormous white beard that seemed to glow. The man ordered his pint and made his way to Kiladius’ table. In a deep voice the man said,“Care to wrestle this tired old man for a pint young man?” Challenge accepted the two locked hands and began. Never had Kiladius found someone who could match his strength. Neither could gain an inch and eventually the match was called a draw. With new respect found for this stranger, Kiladius asked if he could buy the old warrior a pint. “My name’s Marward Dragonsbane, and yes I’ll take that pint.” said the man. The two spend the night sitting at the bar with Marward regaling Kiladius with stories of his days as a Paladin and his many victories on the battlefield in pursuit of justice.
For the first time since that fateful night, Kiladius felt a sense that he should be a force for good in Eomall. He heard the echoes of his parents teaching him as a child to do what was right, treat everyone as equal and be a force for positive change in his world. The pursuit of Justice described to him by Marward had also struck a chord. No longer could Kiladius stand idly by and let the honest, weak and poor of Eomall suffer under the evil of those who would seek to exploit them. It was that night (or morning, as it was quite late) Kiladius told Marward his story and committed himself to the pursuit of the life of a Paladin.
Over the next several years, Marward and Kiladius were inseparable. Marward taught Kiladius everything he could about combat, strength and strategy. The two raided bandit camps to recover stolen goods, sought out and destroyed evil creatures and protected the poor and downtrodden of Lightfall. As the time passed Marward looked toward retiring from the life of a paladin and enjoying his golden years. One evening as the two were leaving their favorite water hole, Marward asked Kiladius if he’d come over first thing in the morning to discuss something important. After a night of peaceful sleep, Kiladius set out for Marward’s house. As he neared the doorway he noticed the door slightly ajar. He approached with caution as Marward we not one to leave his home open. As he entered in to the dim light his darkvison enabled him to see a horrible sight: Marward lying on the floor of his kitchen in a pool or blood. Attached to his back was an ominous note reading “Back off, or you’re next!”. Kiladius was devastated and his blood boiled with vengeful hatred. His life now had renewed focus; to hunt down Marward’s killer and to continue his pursuit of justice by cutting down all those who stood to harm the innocent. With his charge firmly in bedded within him, Kiladius stood at the outer gates of Lightfall, ready to begin the next chapter of his life. Be ready Eomall, Kiladius Bringer of Judgement, is coming to even the scales.