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Rykar

Rykar

I was born July 22nd, 43549 to a mining family who lives outside of Ravensburg. My parents both lived through the Jidarian War. Both of them lost loved ones, but eventually found each other. Dad (Taithegin) was a soldier of Andor and fought with the clerics. He survived when not many did.

After the war my parents and grandparents settled into life after the war. Dad became a phosphate miner, Mom (Marista) started farming. There isn’t much money in either profession, but it kept a roof over our heads and food in our stomachs.

In the winter of my ninth year, I helped to save the town grocers from being burned alive. Their house lit on fire and I (and other kids) went and got others. They saved George and Gracie, plus put out the fire.

The next year (43550), the fair came to town. I took part in a contest and won an ear trumpet.

From an early age I was taught the value of working. At age 11 I was apprenticed to the local paper mill. That job lasted for two years until I had to leave. Max Merr accused me of taking money, which I didn’t do. After my name was cleared, I was given my job back. But working at the mill left a bad taste in my mouth. Instead I joined a sawyer team and worked with them for the next three years. During this time I met Everard. He is a retired member of the Adventurer’s and Hunter’s Guild and tells me tales. He also teaches me about being a hunter. Eventually Everard sponsors me to become part of the Hunter’s Guild when I turn 17. He also convinced me to become a follower of Scyndar.

In addition to joining the Hunter’s Guild at 17, I experienced several other changes. Dina, a girl I had been promised to since birth, and I got married. We immediately moved into a house built by my family as a wedding gift. I have been giving her family money from my jobs for several years. Not because they expected it, but because I felt it was my obligation as her future husband to show that I was capable of providing, even at my young age.

The other major event is that I joined a questing group. Several of us who live in Ravensburg saw a falling meteor and had visions from one of the gods of Light. We all felt the call to follow these visions and set out on our own adventure.

THE KORADUL FAMILY

The Koradul family is quite large and extended, especially for a dwarven family. One of the reasons for this is because of the Jidarian war. There were quite a few refugees which were resettled to Silvermoor and Ravensburg. For the most part the family focused on providing a home and a community for other dwarven refugees. Some members of the Koradul family did adopt non-dwarves.

Rykar’s parents adopted human twins, both of which were several years younger than Rykar. The pair of them, Lisarra and Lisast, left Ravensburg when they turned 15. The family is unsure why they left, but the family believes they left to find whatever might remain of their family. The twins never spoke of their parents or their family, only that they were rescued from a Jidarian slave camp.

Most of the family lives within several miles of each other and pitches in to help the other members of the family out. Most of Koraduls are farmers. But some, like Rykar’s father, are miners. He hires other family members to help in the mining operation. With the recent shift in the economy, members of the family have started going to work in the paper mill and the shipyards.

Most of the family are worshippers of the Church of Light, with a couple of exceptions. Some members of the Koradul clan, like Rykar’s father, are followers of other deities. Despite the fact that the Koradul family is fairly large, they mostly stay to themselves. The clan lives outside of town and only comes into town to get supplies. That doesn't mean that they ignore the town of Ravensburg, it's just that they are more comfortable being outside of the city.

COMING OF AGE

Rykar paused at the mouth to the cave. It was dark inside, despite the fact the forest outside had several torches along the path. Listening carefully, Rykar heard what he thought were voices inside, chanting. The sound carried, but the words were indistinct.

"You'll be alright, boy." The voice came from a dwarf standing by Rykar. It was clear the man mistook Rykar's hesitation for fear.

"I'm okay, Papa."

Rykar

"Then, get moving. Only the stone is eternal, son." The phrase, said by most of the Koradul family, was meant to remind everyone that life was fleeting. With that, Rykar's father stepped inside the entrance to the cave. He knelt down and gathered two large handfuls of dirt, stopping to smell each of them before dropping them back to the floor. He motioned and Rykar quickly followed his example.

He heard his father mumbling slightly. "From dirt we came to the surface . . ." The words trailed off as the elder dwarf stopping speaking. The two stood and walked carefully down the path. Despite the dirt on the floor, the path was well-worn from generations of Koradul feet.

After several minutes the cave opened into a large underground opening. Inside were the other members of the Koradul family, all chanting in the ancient language of the dwarves. Rykar stopped to appreciate the sight. Although the family lived close to each other, it was always an impressive sight when they gathered.

As his eyes scanned the grotto they eventually came to rest on a stone pillar in the center of the room. It was easily the height of two grown dwarves and three times around. The surface was rough-hewn and worn.

Remembering the reason for why they were here, Rykar stepped closer to the stone with his head bowed. He slowly reached out and touched the pillar as he heard his father's voice from behind him.

"The dwarves came from stone, deep in the earth. We carry the strength of the rock in our bones. But, we are creatures of the Light. Although the Light can shine in the Darkness, it needs Light to continue. The first dwarves dig themselves out from the earth and found the surface. We vowed to make this new world our home."

The rest faded away as Rykar studied the column in front of him. Family legend told that the first Koradul was born from this stone. He carried it with him to the surface as a reminder of where the dwarves were born. It felt slightly warm to the touch as he studied it. Realizing his father was talking, Rykar snapped out of his reverie.

"Go on, boy. Take your place among your family." He motioned to an intricately decorated box on a small pedestal beside the column. Rykar nodded his head and opened it find a hammer and chisel in side. Each was inlaid with precious metalwork. The edge of the chisel gleamed with a fine edge and the hammer looked like it had just been forged for this purpose.

Rykar reaches down and reverently picks up each. On the base of the hammer he noticed the sigil of the Koradul family. The young dwarf paused knowing what is next. He slowly circled the stone pillar. Taking a deep breath, he stepped up to the pillar and raised the tools to one of the faces. The sound of metal rapping on metal rang through the cavern. A small chip of stone flaked off and fell to the ground. Kneeling, Rykar picked it up and gently cleaned it. From behind him a chorus of voices called out. “From stone we came, through stone we find strength.”

Smiling, the young dwarf returned the tools to the chest and faced the crowd. Clutching the small stone in his hand, he realized he was now a man in the eyes of his family. Now he just had to find his way in the world.